The Real Reason My Chemical Romance Broke Up

A myriad of hearts broke in the chest of emo teens on Friday, March 22, 2013. After twelve years, My Chemical Romance, one of the biggest bands of the 2000s, had split up. The announcement on their official website simply stated "Being in this band for the past 12 years has been a true blessing... And now, like all great things, it has come time for it to end. Thanks for all of your support, and for being part of the adventure."

Later, Gerard Way, the lead singer and lyricist, tweeted a long letter confirming the news. In it he dispelled any notions that the break up was acrimonious: "I can assure you there was no divorce, argument, failure, accident, villain, or knife in the back that caused this, again this was no one's fault, and it had been quietly in the works, whether we knew it or not, long before any sensationalism, scandal, or rumor." And that was that. The band was no more.

Way's account that the group broke up peacefully hasn't changed. In 2014, he maintained Zane Lowe on BBC Radio 1 that My Chemical Romance knew it was time and that everyone was pretty torn up about it. However, in 2019, that all changed with an announcement that My Chemical Romance would reunite for a My Chemical Romance Reunion Tour. So it seems that neither the great things nor the adventure had yet come to its end. 

Accidental rockstar

However, it's worth interrogating the end of My Chemical Romance further. For that, we'll examine Gerard Way and the fact that he did not originally set out to be a singer, but a comic book writer, a vocation he'd later pursue with his series The Umbrella Academy.

Then 9/11 happened. At the time, Gerard Way was working as an intern at Cartoon Network, but the travesty blew those thoughts away: . "Something just clicked in my head that morning. I literally said to myself, 'Fuck art. I've gotta get out of the basement. I've gotta see the world. I've gotta make a difference!'" A lot of the emotions the band played on were about the falling apart feelings that came at that time. The band had a point. 

In 2013 though, Obama was serving his second term and as Leonie Cooper reminded Gerard Way in an interview for The Guardian, the band felt that the world had changed so much that My Chemical Romance wasn't really needed anymore. So considering that Trump... exists, does he think that My Chemical Romance would reunite? Apparently, he did: "That's stuff I thought about when the world started to get super f*****-up again... I'd changed so much as a person.... I didn't know how the band would fit into it any more. But you're right, the world is definitely in need of something positive."

Evidently, he resolved those uncertainties.