One look at rocker Marylyn Manson, and it’s easy to associate him with images of a dark gothic animalistic man. And it’s precisely the freakish look and the perception of his being something sinister that has prompted many media members to label him, whose real name is Brian Hugh Warner, as “a controversial figure and negative influence on young people.” Being an entertainer who’s willing to push the limits is one thing; facing serious allegations off stage is different.
Manson, 52, is being accused by many of his past lovers as being callous, heartless, and hateful after their allegations that he inflicted ongoing physical, sexual, and emotional abuse on them.
Ashley Morgan Smithline broke her silence saying that Manson used coercive tactics to humiliate her. Smithline gave her first interview to People’s magazine in which she called Manson, who in the U.S. produce three albums that went platinum and gold, “[the] most terrifying monster in the world. I want people to know who he is, and it’s worth it if not one more woman gets hurt again,” she said.
Smithline, along with actor Esmé Bianco who is suing Manson for sexual assault, said Manson appeared to take pride in manipulating them into a relationship. The women report that Manson gave the impression that they were coming to his West Hollywood apartment to audition for parts in a movie.
Smithline first exposed Manson’s alleged behaviors in her Instagram post, saying he made a “blood pact” in which she and Manson drank each other’s blood; Smithline, who is Jewish, said Manson made her buy Nazi materials. And that at one time he broke her nose.
Other women, Ashley Walters, Sarah McNeilly, Ashley Lindsay Morgan, and Evan Rachel Wood, have come forward to back up Smithline’s claims; the women, who were in a relationship with Manson at one time or the other, said they all experienced similar incidents of sexual, emotional and or physical abuse.
“I was emotionally abused, terrorized, and scarred. I was locked in rooms when I was ‘bad,’ sometimes forced to listen to him entertaining other women,” wrote McNeilly. She added, “[ I was] kept away from certain friends, or if I didn’t, he would threaten to come after them.”
Lindsay wrote on her Instagram concerning Manson, “The reason I’m finally sharing this traumatic experience is for my healing and because I’m done being silent. I don’t believe it’s fair for someone to not be held accountable for their horrific actions. I’m not a victim. I’m a survivor.”
While all of these women’s accusations are caused for grave concern if true, actress Evan Rachel Wood seems to have had an enormous impact on Manson’s reputation. Wood, who has an impressive list of movies and TV appearances, including CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, and the TV series True Blood, said during her relationship with Manson, she suffered unbearable humiliation.
She wrote on her Instagram that Manson “horrifically abused me for years. He started grooming me when I was a teenager. I was brainwashed and manipulated into submission.” Wood, 33, also took a jab at Manson’s record label. “The many industries that have enabled him, before he ruins any more lives. I stand with the many victims who will no longer be silent.” Wood and Manson had an on and off-again relationship that began in 2007 when she was 19 and he was 37.
In 2018, Wood gave a speech before the House Judiciary Committee to promote the Sexual Assault Survivors’ Bill of Rights Act. Many felt her abuse claims during the speech was directed toward the relationship that she and Manson had, although Wood did not mention Manson by name.
Regarding the allegations, Manson issued a statement on his Instagram that read. ‘Obviously, my life and my art have long been magnets for controversy, but these recent claims about me are horrible distortions of reality,’ he said. ‘My intimate relationships have always been entirely consensual with like-minded partners. Regardless of how and why others are now choosing to misrepresent the past, that is the truth.’
On Monday, Manson’s record label, Loma Vista, ended their relationship with him. Manson had eight album releases that debuted in the top 10, including two No. 1. Manson has been ranked at No. 44 on the “Top 100 Heavy Metal Vocalists” by Hit Parader; He and his band had been nominated for four Grammy Awards. Manson was set to appear in two TV shows, but since the allegations, the producers have terminated his involvement with the project.