Top Five Reasons to Hate Bono (Other Than That Stupid Spider-Man Musical)

It was impossible to know, back when Rattle and Hum or The Joshua Tree came out, what Bono would one day turn into. He's been making it incredibly difficult to like him for about 15 years now, but -- woomp, there it is -- he just found a way to put a cherry on top of all that annoying behavior: He and the Edge are about to release their soundtrack for the most ridiculed musical in the history of musicals, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark. It's out June 14. As we count down the days to the inevitable horror of it all, let's use the time productively by taking a look back at Bono's other most annoying moments. There are plenty to choose from ...

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5. The Mullet
Yes, it's a trivial thing, but at the time, we couldn't hate him for this because the music he was collectively making with U2 was so exceptionally good we felt silly for even bringing it up. Now we no longer care because U2 hasn't written a song that genuinely moved our souls since, like, 1992. So let's talk about that mullet. Even by '80s standards, it was horrifying. Frankly, we should've considered it a warning for what was to come.


4. Accepting a Knighthood In 2007
Isn't rock 'n' roll about pushing against authority? And fighting the Man? In the U.K., the Queen is the oldest symbol of the Establishment and conformity -- which is why David Bowie refused a knighthood, Keith Richards refused a CBE (a different honor offered by the Queen) and John Lennon sent his MBE (yet another honor) back in protest against worldwide wars supported by Britain. Bono took his, though. Oh, the shame that comes with all that honor ...


3. Talking Out of His Ass
We brought this up after his nonsensical comments about Beyonce at this month's Billboard Awards, but our favorite of his quotes has to be: "U2 is an original species. There are colors and feelings and emotional terrain that we occupy that is ours and ours alone." So U2 experiences emotions and colors that no other human has ever experienced? Oh, all right, Bono, that seems wholly reasonable, you arrogant jerkwad.


2. Those Effing Glasses
What, are they welded to his face? He kept them on inside the White House, he kept them on inside the Vatican, and he probably keeps them on in the shower, in bed, and when he's trying to read in dark rooms at night. The only person who has managed to get them off him is Pope John Paul II -- and we bet even then Bono was pretty reluctant. No wonder he's soundtracking a show titled Turn Off the Dark -- past dusk he's probably half-blind.

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1. That Overwhelming Sense of Self-Satisfaction
Well, he's just smug isn't he? The self-satisfied half-smile, the trying-to-look-moved-all-the-time squint. Bono's is one of the most slappable faces on earth. In the mid-'80s, he looked genuinely concerned and angry about something -- now it feels like the only thing he's concerned about is trying to look concerned about something. Yes, he does a lot of philanthropic work for his chosen causes, but he sure does revel in the attention it brings. Other musicians and actors are constantly doing good for the less fortunate around the world and not rubbing our faces in it every three minutes. Also, they probably pay all of their taxes in their home countries, instead of moving band funds to the Netherlands (true story) to avoid having to give all of that money to you know, Irish schools and whatnot. A little hypocritical, wouldn't you say? Just look at that face.

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Bono is no better or worse than he's ever been.  You're just not 15 anymore.


Or, you could get past the superficial annoyances and note that:

-He pledges to fight poverty, yet moves U2's country of incorporation from Ireland to the Netherlands so he doesn't have to pay taxes on royalties. You know--taxes that might help his struggling countrymen as they face a financial crisis that makes ours look petty by comparison.

-Again, pledging to fight poverty, he invests in Forbes magazine...which proudly calls itself "the capitalist's tool", celebrating conservative economic policies and just generally being rich.

Of course, if you just want to hate the glasses, I have it on good authority that U2 regularly rents entire floors of hotels.  Bono occupies three rooms:  one for himself, one for his glasses, and one for his hats.

I shit you not.

Rae Alexandra
Rae Alexandra

Thanks for the info on 'Forbes' - had no idea. (The tax dodge hypocrisy is at the end of Number 1 though).


Total DERP on my part.  Serves me right for trying to be a smartass.

South Park had it right.  And I stand by the "separate hotel room for the glasses" story, straight from the manager's lips.


What?  No mention of Bono spray-painting graffiti on the fountain in Justin Herman Plaza?

But... the "Joshua Tree" tour in the Oakland Coliseum is still one of the Top 5 concerts I've ever soon....

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