Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
(Photo: Getty Images, Rich Fury)

Maroon 5 announced a new album yesterday, and while that would normally be cause for celebration among people who like largely inoffensive pop rock, this album announcement left people a little confused about the band’s intentions. That’s because the new album is called Red Pill Blues, which seems like a reference to an online community of lonely misogynists who have convinced themselves that feminism is destroying humanity and that they’re oppressed by women and beta males. The term “red pill” originated in The Matrix, but it has recently been co-opted by Men’s Rights Activists to mean that they’ve “woken up” to the “truth” that women are evil, that it’s feminism’s fault that nobody likes them, and that fedoras are actually super cool and stylish.


To get to the bottom of this and figure out if Adam Levine and the rest of Maroon 5 are actually MRA creeps who spend an inordinate amount of time on Reddit talking about “cucks,” Death And Taxes reached out to a spokesperson for the band and directly asked if it was an MRA reference. Here’s what the spokesperson said:

The title references a term popularized in The Matrix. It was never the band’s intention to reference anything else. The band is shocked that this has even come up.

So, it turns out that it’s not a nod to digital misogyny at all, but an actual reference to The Matrix. The Death And Taxes story doesn’t say if Maroon 5 intends to change the name, but since Justin Timberlake somehow got away with a song called “Take Back The Night” a few years ago, maybe it doesn’t really matter.

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