The Real Meaning Behind Olivia Rodrigo's Lacy

When singer-songwriter Olivia Rodrigo dropped her highly-anticipated sophomore album, "Guts," fans were quick to speculate the meaning behind the heart-wrenching bops. The singles "Vampire" and "Bad Idea Right?" set the tone for the album as a collection of grave mistakes, heartaches, and subsequent regrets.

 And while much of "Guts" seems to follow that theme, there are a few exceptions like "Lacy," a mellow track that contrasts against the darker themes of the album with its sweet lyrics, which were written by Rodrigo and Dan Nigro. On the surface, the song describes Rodrigo's infatuation with a girl named Lacy. But Rodrigo's expert lyricism leaves a lot up to interpretation, so fans have several theories about the meaning behind "Lacy."

However, Rodrigo is staying tight-lipped about the inspiration for her music. Speaking to The Guardian, Rodrigo explained why she keeps her cards close to her chest in the matter. "I mean, I never want to say who any of my songs are about," she admitted. "I've never done that before in my career and probably won't. I think it's better to not pigeonhole a song to being about this one thing." "Lacy" is a prime example of Rodrigo's music not having a singular well-defined meaning but several plausible explanations.

Is Olivia Rodrigo coming out with Lacy?

Since Olivia Rodrigo's "Lacy" features several nods to the titular character's beauty, many believe the song is about Rodrigo coming out as queer. The first lines of the track, "Lacy, oh, Lacy, skin like puff pastry," allude to a physical attraction to the song's muse. Lacy is so gorgeous that Rodrigo believes she can't possibly be human and must be made of angel dust. She also seems to notice little things about Lacy like the scent of her lingering perfume and how her eyes look like daisies. 

Rodrigo describes the sweet torture of being unable to escape Lacy as she runs into her everywhere, takes over her thoughts, and eventually becomes an obsession. These lines could hint at Lacy being a famous personality. To portray her nervous longing for Lacy, Rodrigo sings about how she makes butterflies flutter in her stomach "like ribbons in your hair, my stomach's all in knots."

But the outro describes how Rodrigo cannot grapple with how Lacy makes her feel. In the context of this explanation, it could either mean that Rodrigo cannot accept her feelings for Lacy because they're so new or Lacy is unattainable, so all this longing could break her heart. In the song's final lines, Rodrigo seemingly openly admits that she has feelings for Lacy, singing, "And I despise my jealous eyes and how hard they fell for you."

Lacy could be a song about comparisons

On her debut album "Sour," Olivia Rodrigo wrote several songs about how her need to compare herself with others negatively affected her self-esteem. And "Lacy" could be a continuation of that theme. Instead of looking at the song through love's lens, we could see it from the eyes of a woman struggling to love herself because she believes she'll never reach the epitome of beauty like Lacy. All the references to Lacy's beauty could be Rodrigo reminding herself of all the ways in which she lacks in comparison. 

Despite holding her in such regard, Lacy's compliments don't bring Rodrigo any happiness because they feel like throwaways coming from someone so beautiful. Throughout the track, Rodrigo tells herself to take Lacy off the pedestal because she's a human after all, but she can't seem to do so. The line "you got the one thing that I want" alludes to Lacy being her ex's new partner or Lacy reaching Rodrigo's ideal beauty standard.

The final chorus fits this theory perfectly because Rodrigo feels as though Lacy's mere existence makes it harder for her to live. The lines, "Lacy, oh Lacy, it's like you're out to get me. You poison every little thing that I do," could mean that Rodrigo cannot do simple things without comparing them to how Lacy would do them. As the song ends, she expresses her disdain for Lacy and curses her brain for being unable to tune out the comparisons.

Who is 'Lacy' about?

All of the lyric videos released for "Guts" had rings featuring the four letters that made up the album title, except "Lacy," which saw the absence of the "S" ring. This led many to speculate that the song could be about Sabrina Carpenter. In "Happier" from her first album, "Sour," Rodrigo described Carpenter as a beautiful woman who gives her ex butterflies, which mimics the feelings Lacy gives her. 

Lacy's second verse sees Rodrigo compare her muse to Bridget Bardot, an iconic 1950s sex symbol. And in 2020, Carpenter did a photoshoot where she recreated a Bardot photo. Carpenter matches Bardot's beauty with her blonde hair and facial structure. She also posted an Instagram photo of her recreating a Bardot look with ribbons in her hair, as mentioned in the track. "Lacy" could also be about Rodrigo and Taylor Swift's complicated relationship, which led some to believe "Vampire" was about Swift, too. 

Swift has garnered a reputation for being one of the sweetest and most down-to-earth artists in the music industry. So, Rodrigo could be alluding to her with the line, "Aren't you the sweetest thing on this side of hell?" Swift also has Bardot's blonde hair and gorgeous looks. Since the start of her career, Rodrigo has been compared to Swift. As an up-and-coming artist, it can almost start to feel like you can't escape the comparisons nor live up to them, which aligns with the track's themes of envy. Rodrigo is also a huge fan of Swift's, matching the obsession in "Lacy."