If you were a Spice Girls fan in the '90s, then you likely spent a large portion of your free time hungrily poring over the lyrics in their CD inserts while listening to the songs. It's OK, everybody did it. But, in retrospect, there were probably a lot of Spice Girls lyrics that didn't mean what you thought they did. You're likely already aware of some of the dirty lyrics in Spice Girls songs you might've missed as a kid, but there are so many more than you realized. It wasn't just some innuendos; there were a lot of metaphors happening, leaving plenty of room for misinterpreted Spice Girls lyrics.
Between the innocence of childhood and that imaginative zeal that comes with being a kid, it's easy to either misunderstand or read into lyrics that don't actually mean anything. On the flip side, the same can be said for lyrics with a far deeper (and often dirtier) meaning than your childhood brain could (thankfully) comprehend. Both of these statements are true when it comes to Spice Girls lyrics. Some of the lyrics below are also included simply because the rumors over what they actually mean are enough to ruin your entire childhood. Seriously, prepare yourself before diving in.
1"Well, My Dear, You Know That He Pleases Me / But Sometimes Illusion Is No Revolution / That Ain't No Release For Me" — "Too Much"
Sweet mercy, this is totally a line about not having to fake orgasms with a partner, isn't it? That means '90s kids were all likely singing about orgasms in front of their family, friends, and teachers completely unaware. Great.
2"We Can Go For All Night Long / Doing Things You Thought You Would Never Do" — "Holler"
Like eating an entire large pizza by yourself? Or playing on Echo The Dolphin until 1 a.m. like a total rebel? Things like that? Oh, wait. Oh no, it isn't that at all. Oh, cripes.
3"Be A Little Bit Wiser, Baby / Put It On, Put It On / 'Cause Tonight Is The Night / When Two Become One" — "2 Become 1"
Be honest. When you were a kid you thought this song was about something sweet, like Emma Bunton telling her boyfriend to put his coat on because it's raining outside, right? You probably had no idea it was actually about safe sex and using condoms. But it's OK, because none of us did.
4"First Time Whet My Appetite / Second Helpings Always Better / Started Getting Burning Hot" — "Last Time Lover"
This isn't a literal lyric about the joys of eating endless amounts of spicy food. It's absolutely, totally about sex.
5"I Wanna Really, Really, Really Wanna Zig-A-Zig-Ah" — "Wannabe"
Truthfully, no one likely had any idea what a "zig-a-zig-ah" was as a child. However, a 2015 rumor placed the origin and meaning of "Zig-a-zig-ah" as coming from a very unsavory place that simply cannot be repeated here. Just know that whatever you thought it meant as a child was way off from the actual and slightly horrifying rumored meaning.
6"So Climb Aboard My Journey Deep Inside / Better Late Than Dead On Time" — "Something Kinda Funny"
This lyric isn't about getting aboard the amazing Spice Girls bus from Spice World and turning up fashionably late to a party (that was the dream, by the way). Instead, it appears to be a sexual invite with the added bonus of encouraging a delayed orgasm. (Totally fair play: Get it, ladies.)
7"I Wont Tell Anyone What We Do / It's Just For Me And You / So Come And Play My Game" — "Holler"
We all had that embarrassing game we were too ashamed to admit we loved back when we were kids. However, this lyric probably isn't about your secret passion for Dungeons & Dragons, but likely about some sexual games instead.
8"I Will Not Be Told / Keep Your Mouth Shut / Keep Your Legs Shut / Go Back In Your Place" — "Do It"
Hands up if, as a child, you honestly thought that being told to "keep your legs shut" was simply in reference to maintaining polite, ladylike etiquette while sitting. You know, rather than the implied meaning that the Spice Girls appear to be going for here.
9"Boy, Don't You Hesitate, I Won't Keep Waiting For You / To Come And Let Me Take You To My Fantasy Room" — "Holler"
This was long before 50 Shades Of Grey made "fantasy" rooms a legit thing — not that it would have helped us understand this lyric any better as kids. Because here, the line gave the impression that the Spice Girls were just talking about their dream bedrooms (like the amazing bedroom from Hey Arnold!, right?) and encouraging their boy pal to come hang in it. So innocent.
10"If You Wanna Be My Lover / You Gotta Get With My Friends" — "Wannabe"
As a child, this lyric seemed to imply that a potential boyfriend had to date your friends before they were worthy of coming anywhere near you. This seemed rightfully strange and not appealing in the slightest bit. In retrospect, it seems to be about encouraging your lover to show respect for your friends, which is a sentiment anyone can get behind.
11"Hey You, You're Always On The Run / Gotta Slow It Down Baby, Got To Have Some Fun" — "Stop"
Although you may have thought so as a child, just because someone's "on the run," doesn't make them some kind of a fugitive.
12"Wink Wink, Nudge Nudge / Tell Me Do You Like The Rude Stuff?" — "If You Wanna Have Some Fun"
To kids everywhere, "the rude stuff" doesn't get any ruder than, like, a butt or a fart or a particularly gnarly burp. But it definitely does get ruder as we grow up and realize that our favorite Spice Girls songs have been absolutely full of innuendos the entire time.
13"Don't You Know It's Going Too Fast / Racing So Hard You Know It Won't Last / Don't You Know, What Can't You See? / Slow It Down, Read The Sign, So You Know Just Where You're Going" — "Stop"
It sounds like a proficient piece of bicycling advice for you to stay safe on the roads, rather than a statement about taking it slow and easy at the start of a romantic relationship. Right?
14"We Got G Like MC Who Likes It On An... / Easy V Doesn't Come For Free, She's A Real Lady" — "Wannabe"
According to The Daily Star, who apparently received this salacious detail from an unnamed "insider," this "Wannabe" lyric is apparently harboring a drugs reference, with the line being suggestive of "enjoying sex whilst on ecstasy." The phonetic "E" that starts the "Easy V" line cheekily ends the proposition of the previous one, making it sound as though they say, "G like MC who likes it on the E." And with that revelation, there goes our childhoods. Kaput. Ruined.
Are you ever going to be able to hear the Spice Girls the same way again? Probably not. Then again, now that you know what they were really singing about, maybe you'll love the Spice Girls even more.