Gabbie Hanna medicates our souls once again

Hanna releases another single before the release of her first album


(Simon Nathans/ Daily Collegian)

By Simon Heywood, Collegian Correspondent

With the release of “Monsterand Monster (Reborn)” last Halloween, fans were wondering what online personality Gabbie Hanna’s next move would be. Originally, she announced to her fans, which she calls “showstoppers,” that she wanted to have an album out by the end of the year, and later in 2018 she announced its title: “This Time, Next Year.” When New Year’s Eve came to an end, some fans were wondering where Hanna went. Soon after, she announced that she was working on a new single, “Medicate.” Her “showstoppers” were once again sent into hysteria as the waiting game for February 1 began.

Throughout the next few weeks, Hanna began teasing her new single by posting photoshoots on the set of the music video, to revealing the cover art for the single on Instagram. With each post, she released a bit of the lyrics, hyping her audience even more.

When February 1 rolled around, social media and YouTube blew up with reactions to Hanna’s new single. Many, including her close friends, commented on how she outdid herself yet again.

I couldn’t agree with them more. Each single Hanna puts out always leaves her previous one in the dust. With “Medicate,” this single was the most emotional of all her pieces thus far. This song touched my soul and sent me back into my own memories, with each lyric and note striking a new chord within me

Hanna wrote on Instagram that “Medicateis a song “for anyone who’s ever felt like a science experiment gone wrong, for anyone who’s questioned if their brain is broken, for anyone who’s ever wondered if their feelings are justified,” following up by saying “depression is scary. Anxiety is scary. The idea of chemically altering your mind [with medication] is scary.” In 2013, Hanna graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and communications. From her life experiences along with her studies, she’s become one of the greatest storytellers and a prominent internet personality that voices the importance of mental health awareness.

With “Medicate,” Hanna questions whether a pill/medication can truly help those of us struggling with mental illnesses be one step closer to happiness. “Can you medicate a broken heart,” she sings, wondering if medication is “the way to fix this or is this a quick fix.” Can medication be a long-lasting solution or is it only temporary?

As the song’s story progressed, however, one lyric that stuck out to me as a blossom of hope in a dead field is “turn your tragedies into a work of art.” That not only stuck out to me, but it stuck to me. That’s what artists do. Sure, we are very capable of expressing the happiness in us, but our dark times also motivate us to create beautiful things. Oftentimes, it’s those creations that are sprouted by the darkness that help so many people, because it shows no one goes through the darkness alone. It also shows that there is a way to turn the darkness into something good. In one of the promotional photos she posted on Instagram for the single, she says “this little sunflower grew in darkness,” referring to how all of the hardships she went through only helped her grow. Every obstacle we encounter, all the hardships we face, are presented to us as a means to help us learn and grow as individuals.

Along with the single that Hanna released on February 1, she released the music video for this song the following day. To me, it’s as if the music video is a work of art that stands so strong on its own, adding another beautiful layer to the song with its visual effects. The music video starts out with Hanna in loose clothes, makeup that makes her look tired and drained, walking into an empty room set up with chairs in a circle. As she sits, she starts to sing, and the cameras circle her the entire time, zooming in on her depressed state, then zooming in on the chair across from her, showing the viewer her perspective.

People in the comment section and on social media analyzed the video thoroughly, and at the bridge of the song the video circles from behind Hanna and there is a flash effect that reveals another version of Hanna. She’s wearing a black leather jacket, black pants and heeled boots, with a full face of polished makeup, and neatly curled hair, singing back at this depressed version of herself. As the finishing portion of the song continues with each of them singing to each other, viewers noticed something in the back; the windows present in the video the entire time had bars added to it the moment “leather Gabbie” appeared. This subtle change was interpreted in many ways; my interpretation is that this constant pondering on the use of medication is almost like leading some people to a mental prison. Can medication free us from our dark mental prisons, or will it only lock us in a new mental prison? At least, that’s how I see it.

Overall, this single is so beautiful, from the notes to the lyrics. The music video added a visual layer to the song, giving it another sense of beauty. The way it was shot and directed was so amazing and mellow; it conveyed Hanna’s story of her song perfectly. To echo the words of her friends and “showstoppers,”Gabbie has truly outdone herself this time, and I cannot wait to see what she releases next.

Simon Heywood can be reached at [email protected].