What does Russian Roulette mean?

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Rihanna: Russian Roulette Meaning


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Song Released: 2009

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Russian Roulette Lyrics

Take a breath, take it deep
Calm yourself, he says to me
If you play, you play for keeps
Take a gun, and count to three
I'm sweating now, moving slow
No time to think, my turn to go

And you can see my heart beating
You can see it through...


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    Mar 27th, 2010 3:40pm report

    Rihanna is taking a very life-threatening chance with the man in the song by playing Russian roulette with him. Clearly the man in the song doesn't care about her life by making her play the game although she says she is "not leaving." It is a metaphor for taking a risk in a relationship that can possibly ruin your life emotionally and physically. After her unfortunate incident the song is a hindsight understanding of her relationship with Chris Brown where she in actually risked her life in staying with him. She must have contemplated death that night of the brutal incident and this is the song reflecting on those events and the person she was with.

    It took me a while but it is very easy to figure out. let's take a closer look.

    "I’m sweating now, moving slow
    No time to think, my turn to go"
    She was very scared because he had tryed to hurt her before
    "And I’m terrified but I’m not leaving"
    l don't understand that part very well but l think she loved him too much.
    "And then I get a scary thought
    That he’s here means he’s never lost"
    She thinks he can get away with it or something.
    The last part is about the time of the incident
    "As my life flashes before my eyes
    I’m wondering will I ever see another sunrise?"
    it's obvious.

    l love this song ! XD


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    Oct 24th, 10:49pm report

    How come no one mentions the fact that, in this round of the game, she apparently wins. She beats the guy, as if beating him at his own game.

    Anyway, the song definitely speaks about how one may gamble with life. However, I do not think it necessarily means so in the literal sense. The music video gives the sense of her having already experienced death at some level at least. For instance, she was both shot and run over by a car but still finds herself in this prison like place for another round.

    Death is not meant to be literal because she emerges after those attacks on her life. The idea of Russian Roulette is like how frivolous human beings play with each others' lives, as if killing each other a little each time.

    But, as I said, in the end, she emerges the winner.


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    Jan 3rd, 2020 1:18pm report

    It could be a human talking to God, please listen to the song carefully. The human in the song is so vulnerable and can’t do anything regarding the end of his life, everybody dies, so just pull the trigger is the message human is saying just to show he has a say in his death decision. Of course I could be wrong.


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    Nov 21st, 2019 11:55pm report

    It's about Rihanna giving her heart to the devil


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    Aug 20th, 2016 8:14am report

    I agree with some, but of course, have my own interpretation of this song. A few yrs ago, got into a relationship w a guy 23 yrs my jr. Loved him so much. Knew it probably wouldn't work out. Big fear. We were so good together. Wanted SO BAD for it to work out. And i took that chance...trying to pass the "test." we lasted 4 yrs. Even engaged at the end..
    As long as he was there with me, i hadn't lost him.not yet. But my worried mind and heart told me that eventually, i would lose him. Because of our age difference.
    I think yes, she's taking a chance on a man/relationship. And she is afraid of it not working out. She's scared, but not leaving...gonna stick it thru..take a chance with love and the one bullet in the chamber. He tells her to relax.. All is good. But, she knows it probably won't last..gonna kill her.will only see one last sunrise...So...its a gamble. And...in the end, she was right. It Fell apart. Killed her.. She couldn't fulfill him.


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    Jul 16th, 2012 7:33pm report

    Russian roulette is the infamous game where you have several guns, some loaded, some not. You pick one and shoot yourself, hoping it's not loaded.
    Read more about Russian Roulette and the different variations here:

    "And then I get a scary thought
    That he's here means he's never lost"

    This means he (the opponent) has never lost a game, he hasn't shot himself. He must be good at the game, and she worries for her life.

    "But it's too late too pick up the value of my life"

    This means she is too far in to back out now.

    "If you play, you play for keeps"

    An allusion to how if you win, you live, and you lose, you lose forever.

    A brilliant song with deep meaning.


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    Oct 18th, 2011 10:36am report

    it gives u new life when u r about to enter the after life and it shows clearly she is not afraidof the dead and the creaer of death


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    Jun 18th, 2011 6:41am report

    I thought it was about when Chris Brown beat her up but instead of saying he beat her shes saying he shot her cos beat-up doesnt sound as muscical.


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    Feb 17th, 2011 2:32pm report

    I think she went through a initiation test and that's how she was feeling through it.


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    Sep 9th, 2010 9:57am report

    She is playing a life threatening game and is scared in case she loses her life

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