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Released: 2021

“Favorite Crime” by Olivia Rodrigo is a poignant ballad that delves into the complex realm of toxic relationships and emotional manipulation. The song serves as a retrospective on a love gone badly, where Rodrigo juxtaposes her selfless devotion with the manipulation she endures, neatly wrapped in crime scene metaphors. It’s her personal narrative of playing the willing victim while grappling with lingering feelings for the perpetrator.

The opening lines: “Know that I loved you so bad, I let you treat me like that, I was your willing accomplice, honey,” sets the stage with a confessional tone. Rodrigo admits to being manipulatively treated yet, ironically, she willingly played her part in the abusive dynamic, blinded by love. The phrase “willing accomplice” demarcates her role in the so-called ‘crimes of love’.

She further says, “And I watched as you fled the scene, Doe-eyed as you buried me, One heart broke, four hands bloody.” Here, she likens the end of the relationship to a crime scene, with her doe-eyed innocence shattered and both parties bloodied in the emotional wreckage. It’s a raw visual underlining the painful toll of such relationships.

“You used me as an alibi, I crossed my heart as you crossed the line… ‘Cause you know that I’d do it all again.” – This could symbolize her blind trust, crossing her own boundaries as the lover consistently crossed the line. Despite the hurt, she’d go through the pain again – indicating the crippling cycle of toxic love.

The chorus: “The things I did, Just so I could call you mine. The things you did, Well, I hope I was your favorite crime” is a gut-wrenching commentary on their emotionally manipulative dynamic. Rodrigo yearns for something meaningful in her heartache – even if it’s just being remembered as his ‘favorite crime’.

It all culminates in the final verses: “It’s bittersweet to think about the damage that we’d do… But I say that I hate you with a smile on my face.” This underlines the bitter paradox of love and hate, how one smiles through the pain and the bizarre satisfaction from the shared destruction.

Ending on a note of acceptance and closure, “Your favorite crime, ‘Cause, baby, you were mine,” Rodrigo seems to let go, accepting their shared culpability in the relationship’s demise. The phrase “baby, you were mine” encapsulates her lasting affection amidst the heartbreak – a complicated mix of nostalgia, pain, and acceptance.

In “Favorite Crime,” Rodrigo employs an intriguing mix of crime imagery and raw emotional vulnerability, illustrating the traumatic aftermath of a toxic relationship. It is a profound exploration of forgiveness, victimhood, and the challenging process of finding closure.

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