The Real Meaning Behind Olivia Rodrigo's Get Him Back

Olivia Rodrigo's "Get Him Back!" was born out of a moment of intense doubt. When Rodrigo appeared on "The Zane Lowe Show," she explained that before "Get Him Back!" she penned another track that was later scrapped. The pop star recalled how that made her question her songwriting abilities: "I was like, 'God, I can't write songs. I'm so bad at this. I don't want to,' whatever, being really negative. Then, we took a break, and we came back, and we wrote 'Get Him Back!' and it's one of my favorite songs."

Rodrigo immediately loved the song because she knew it would be fun to perform for a crowd in a packed arena. The former Disney star penned "Get Him Back!" with trusted collaborator Dan Nigro and despite being a part of her impressive sophomore album, "Guts," it still manages to stand out because of its unique style. Though the production sounds like a classic pop-punk song, the lyrics almost sound rap-like because of their delivery. 

"Get Him Back!" explores the contradictory emotions that come about after a complicated heartbreak. On the one hand, we want to make our ex feel the hurt they've caused us, but on the other, we miss them and want them back. What makes things even harder is that these emotions dictate our next moves: Will we go back to a familiar situation for a smidge of happiness or risk leaving a former love behind in the hopes of finding something better? "Get Him Back!" proves that Rodrigo understands this struggle all too well.

Get Him Back! is full of contradictions

"Get Him Back!" actually features a double meaning because Olivia Rodrigo wants her ex to be in love with her again, but she also wants to get him back for all the hurt he's caused her. The track's chorus sees her juggling these competing emotions as the former Disney star sings about how she wants to make him jealous and get under his skin but then follows it up with how much she misses him. The end of the chorus summarizes these contradictory feelings: "Oh, I want sweet revenge, and I want him again." 

Throughout the track, Rodrigo describes how her ex wronged her. While they were dating, he used to flirt with her friends and may have even cheated on her. Despite everything, he doesn't believe he's in the wrong. Instead of confronting these issues head-on, he jets her off on fancy vacations and tells her she's being unreasonable. Still, Rodrigo finds herself missing the good parts of the relationship, as she sings: "'Cause I miss the way he kisses and the way he made me laugh."

Sometimes, her feelings of longing win over and she starts writing him a text to get back together, but then the singer-songwriter considers how disappointed her friends would be and stops herself. Thus, Rodrigo wishes she could make her ex better, noting, "But I am my father's daughter, so maybe I can fix him" to cheekily reference how she wants to fix him, just like her father, a family therapist, would.

Is 'Get Him Back!' about Adam Faze?

In the "Get Him Back!" outro, we hear chants encouraging Olivia Rodrigo to get him back. But the song's final line, "Oh, I don't know, I got him good, I got him really good," indicates that the singer-songwriter got her revenge with the track. Given the song's scathing lyrics, it's unsurprising that people have speculated about who it's about. Most fans are convinced that Rodrigo's ex-boyfriend, Adam Faze, is the inspiration behind it. 

In the opening lines, Rodrigo sings, "I met a guy in the summer, and I left him in the spring." The pair reportedly started dating in the summer of 2021 and ended things around February of the next year, which aligns with the track's timeline. Another lyric in the opening verse — "He said he's six-foot-two, and I'm like, 'Dude, nice try,'" — could also reference Faze, who reportedly stands at 5'9". 

In "Vampire," which many also believe to be about Faze, Rodrigo bitterly recalls how her ex would take her out to parties and make them out to be the best thing in the world when in reality, they weren't that enjoyable for her. "Get Him Back!" recalls the negative experience: "And he would take us out to parties, and the night would never end. Another song, another club, another bar, another dance."