"Misery" (CD single)

Music review by
Stephanie Bruzzese, Common Sense Media
"Misery" (CD single) Music Poster Image
Popular with kids
Brooding breakup song is accompanied by very violent video.

Parents say

age 18+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 16 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

This tune is slightly darker than the average breakup song. For example: "Sometimes these cuts are so much deeper then they seem / You'd rather cover up, I'd rather let them bleed."

Positive Role Models & Representations

Despite the dark tone of this single, the members of Maroon 5 set good overall examples, leading clean lives and avoiding controversy.


Though the lyrics themselves aren't very violent, the whole video is based on a girl who tries to kill a guy by knifing him, shooting him, hitting him with a car, and other acts of violence.


A few steamy lines like "Your salty skin and how it mixes in with mine / The way it feels to be completely intertwined." 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this single gives a darker take on the average breakup, with somewhat morbid lyrics like "I am in misery, there ain't nobody who can comfort me / Why won't you answer me? Your silence is slowly killing me." The video also depicts a girl trying to physically hurt a guy by knifing him, hitting him with a car, and more. That said, the lyrics themselves are largely free of graphic language, sexual descriptions, or references to substance use. In the end, the song itself is acceptable for teens.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byBlueRibbonCookies December 14, 2011

Watch the video before you let your kids see it

Wow. I just saw the video for this song and I am stunned. The premise is supposed to be "comical," but they missed by a long shot (at least for this m... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byArticwolf Odinson February 15, 2019
Teen, 16 years old Written byrebma97 March 20, 2014

Catchy, but violent lyrics

This song is really catchy, and Adam Levine is a really good singer. However, the lyrics are violent and contain some depressing lyrics about breakups ("So... Continue reading

What's the story?

Hot pop band Maroon 5 has released the first single, titled "MISERY," off their third studio album, Hands All Over. The story behind the song involves a guy who's lamenting a painful breakup, giving a somewhat dark and more adult rendition of post-breakup emotions: "I wrote two hundred letters I will never send / Sometimes these cuts are so much deeper than they seem / You’d rather cover up, I’d rather let them bleed... I am in misery, there ain’t nobody who can comfort me ...The silence is slowly killing me." Despite the melancholic overtone, the lyrics don't include explicit language or graphic descriptions of sex. However, the video is another matter -- showing the band members under various forms of physical attack by an extremely violent woman. Though the song itself is OK for teens, watch out for the video.

Is it any good?

"Misery" features the classic sound that's made other Maroon 5 songs famous: bubbly pop beats combined with lead singer Adam Levine's unusually high vocals. While the formula is nothing we haven't heard before, it still results in a catchy enough tune that will appeal to die-hard Maroon 5 fans and anyone who appreciates good, solid pop.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how to handle an especially bad breakup. What are five things you can do to cheer yourself up after your heart's been broken?

  • What are five lessons you can learn from a bad breakup that can help you have more successful relationships in the future?

Music details

  • Artist: Maroon 5
  • Release date: July 29, 2010
  • Label: A&M Records
  • Genre: Pop
  • Parental advisory: No
  • Edited version available: No
  • Last updated: November 11, 2020

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