Esme Bianco details how Marilyn Manson abused & tortured her for years

Esme Bianco  at the 2015 Society Of Came....

It didn’t occur to me until just now that the women abused by Marilyn Manson were paying attention to Evan Rachel Wood’s words and actions for years. The women who came after Evan were abused, tortured, raped and traumatized as well, and in retrospect, I can see now that Evan became their North Star. They paid attention to what she said, for years, about being the victim of intimate partner abuse. They paid attention to her activism at the state and national level to protect survivors of abuse and punish the abusers. And when Evan named her abuser, those women took their cues from Evan too. Which is why so many of Manson’s victims came out and told their stories, and named Manson as well, all in the wake of Evan telling her story. I realized all of that as I read Esme Bianco’s account of being violently assaulted, tortured and raped by Manson. She, like Evan, had spoken about intimate partner violence publicly, but like Evan, she had not named her abuser before now. You can read Esme’s account here at The Cut (trigger warning: her story is very graphic). Here’s just one section.

“It’s really surreal,” she says over Zoom from her Los Angeles living room. The 38-year-old redhead takes off her glasses and wipes away a tear. Talking about Manson sends her body into flight mode, but more recently, it also fills her with what she calls a dragonlike strength. “I have this hot energy and power in my chest. I just want to open my mouth and be like ‘Ahhhhhhh’ and rain fire down,” she tells me, sticking out her tongue and waving both hands. It’s a strength Bianco says she didn’t have while playing Ros, a character on Game of Thrones who works in a brothel and is abused in ways that mirror the actress’s personal life. Like Ros, Bianco’s alleged abuse often had an audience: members of Manson’s entourage who now say they witnessed his angry outbursts and Bianco’s bruises, along with the fans and industry executives who dismissed the singer’s violent comments about women as just a part of his stage persona. “He’s told the world time and time again, ‘This is who I am,’’ says Bianco. “He hid in plain sight.”

****

Their [friendly] dynamic changed in 2009, after Manson sent Bianco a plane ticket from her home in London to L.A. so she could star in the music video for his song “I Want to Kill You Like They Do in the Movies.” He explained that it would be shot on a flip camera for a home-video feel and would involve Manson “kidnapping” Bianco in his home. “I need to have a victim/lover,” he wrote in an email. Bianco believed that the job would be strictly professional. “You are gonna have to pretend to like being manhandled by me. Sorry,” Manson emailed her a few days before the shoot. Once she arrived, she says, the line between art and reality immediately blurred. Bianco, who was 26 at the time, says she spent the next three days in lingerie, barely sleeping or eating, with Manson serving up cocaine rather than food. She remembers him losing his temper and throwing the camera at a smoke alarm. Soon, she says, he became violent, tying her with cables to a prayer kneeler, lashing her with a whip, and using an electric sex toy called a Violet Wand on her wounds — the same kind of “torture device” Wood has said was used on her. Bianco was terrified but tried to calm down by telling herself, It’s just Manson being theatrical. We are going to make great art.

While waiting for her flight back home, Bianco sobbed. She felt sad to leave Manson and considered her wounds to be proof of their bond. On some level, she knew what had happened wasn’t BDSM; she says they hadn’t discussed consent or safe words, which she knew from both personal experience and the fetish performers in her circle were crucial for safe power dynamics. A few days after the shoot, Manson emailed Bianco a picture of her back covered in welts with a note reading, “bringing sexy back.”

[From The Cut]

It gets progressively worse from there. Two years after the “video shoot” – which was just Manson torturing her – she moved in with him and the abuse got far worse. He would shake her awake and tell her that she needed his permission to sleep. He would whip her. He would humiliate her in front his friends. The emotional abuse went hand in hand with the physical abuse, and Manson and his crew normalized all of it.

It’s also worth noting that both ERW and Esme testified in California around the passage, last year, of the Phoenix Act, which is an extension of existing domestic violence statutes, and basically makes it easier for survivors to come forward and press charges against their abusers, even years after the fact. Esme says at various points in this piece that Manson belongs in jail for what he did to her and other women. I agree.

Marilyn Manson attends The Art of Elysium's 13th Annual Black Tie Artistic Experience 'Heaven' at The Palladium in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, USA, on 04 January 2020. | usage worldwide

Photos courtesy of WENN, Avalon Red.

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62 Responses to “Esme Bianco details how Marilyn Manson abused & tortured her for years”

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  1. Nicole says:

    The keeping you awake thing needs to be talked about more. It’s such a shock.

  2. Digital Unicorn says:

    My heart breaks for her but am glad she was able to heal and feel strong enough to tell her story. Manson needs to be in jail.

    She was also horribly treated by D&D on the set of GoT, supposedly her refusal to do nude/sex scenes, as it was traumatic for her, was the reason they killed Ros off.

    • sa says:

      I didn’t know that. And they killed her off so horribly, it was traumatizing for me as a viewer, I can’t begin to imagine how bad it must have been for her after surviving domestic violence.

      Any time I think I can’t like the GOTs guys less, I learn something new about them…

      • molly says:

        The behind the scenes of that show sound miserable. (Especially the treatment of women.) In many ways, I’m happy it ended so poorly and everyone saw the terrible GOT guys for what they were. I’d be really mad if it was held up as some artistic masterpiece that continued to receive tongue baths for decades to come.

    • AMM says:

      That was speculation because people knew one woman on set refused to do nude scenes anymore. It was more likely to be Emilia since she almost stopped other than one for the fire reveal in the later seasons.

      Ros was a made up character for show only, and considering Little Finger, Varys and Sansa (her main interactions) left Kings Landing and all the brothels got destroyed the season after Ros died, I don’t think she was ever written to survive or have a bigger part.

  3. Lunasf17 says:

    He turned out to be exactly who he claims to be. I hope he gets some jail time or something for these victims. He is gross. I’m not sure exactly how the law works in these cases but
    I’m hoping for something.

    • Julie says:

      It’s truly astounding how much of the so-called trolling was real. The physical abuse of his girlfriends in his music videos was apparently real. Imagine being that sociopathic that you literally air your crimes to millions and make money off it?

  4. GreenBunny says:

    I’m not usually an eye for an eye person, but everything he did to these poor women should be done to him. He needs to feel what he did to them while people laugh and watch him suffer. He makes me feel so much rage.

  5. Zinny says:

    But she went back from London two YEARS after the torture video, back to him to move in with him. I know I’ll be canceled for saying this, but I just can’t with this at a certain point. I cannot infantilize grown adult women to that extent. Yes, when someone lives with the abuser, if he controls all the family money, he controls the only housing available to the victim, they have kids together, or they are escaping an even more abusive family situation, you can say that staying with the abuser or going back to them is not really that person’s choice. What Esme did here IS a choice and I’m not going to infantilize her.

    And it strikes a real nerve in me because I have a friend who is VERY similar. This friend is married with children and is being abused by her AFFAIR PARTNER. And she keeps going back and back to the affair partner and being forgiven by her husband (who also cheated and has plenty of his own problems but that’s another story.) She parentifies her young children and uses them as her emotional support animals to cry to over how his man abuses her.

    For a LONG time, literally a year or two, I just thought she had gotten in over her head with a manipulator and just needed help getting out.

    Two years later after unhuman amounts of help from me, her husband, her children, her therapist, and a variety of other people, she just keeps going back and back but then wants to keep constantly moaning to us all about the horrible things he does to her.

    At this point I have to unfriend her because I can’t stand to hear it anymore and I can’t stand how she’s CHOOSING to drag her family through this.

    And I feel the same way about someone who CHOOSES to fly in from London to move in with the guy TWO YEARS after he made the torture video.

    • detritus says:

      They say it takes over 7 times of trying to leave an abuser.

      Rather than dissecting the whys of when they leave and when the speak out, maybe we should be looking at how incredibly complicated it is to untangle trauma bonds and mentally shift that a person you respected/desired/loved (or still do) is a predator.

    • Leigh says:

      And she left after 2 months of living full time with the abuse. She was obviously manipulated by him into thinking life with him would have been different. When it was harming her, she planned her escape and left. Wow. Your comment is yikes. Sorry about your friend but we’re talking about another victim of abuse here.

    • Julie says:

      @Zinny. It’s called trauma bonding. Look up her testimony to the State Senate a few years ago. She explains that the mind finds a way to protect itself by normalising abuse. And if you have been abused before, as was her case, it was easy to slide into this as undesirable but not a deal breaker. Is it possible that she thought she could get a better lifestyle from him? Sure. But that’s still not a license to assault her.

    • Mich says:

      It is possible that he groomed her in the two years in between so that she was able to segment the ‘torture for art’ in her mind as something that wasn’t his usual habit. He sounds very gifted at psychological manipulation.

    • Gah says:

      @Zinny I would recommend doing some reading and reflection on abuse and how often women who have abusive partners are also victims of developmental abuse in childhood.

      Yes we are adults and can make our own decisions AND it takes incredible amounts of resources and support to escape (finally) and do the healing work required not to make the same choices again and again.

      Consider your inquiry into abuse like you would a school assignment and delve into the psyches of both the abused and the abusers.

      Our world is staggeringly unjust and the webs of trauma far more insidious than many people realize.

      I envy you your naïveté and wish I did not have first hand experience with both developmental abuse (that led to CPTSD- something even experienced therapists often lack skills to treat) as well as garden variety PTSD from several assaults in adulthood.

      Breaking the cycles that created my pathologies has cost hundreds of thousands of dollars and years of my life. It is a privilege to be able to do the recovery work I have done.

      The vast majority of people who have experienced harrowing crimes against them likely do not have the access and support I have had and it is incredibly difficult to untangle the webs.

      I wish your friend recovery and healing and wish for you a broader understanding of the very real obstacles that face victims as they extricate themselves from painful and vicious cycles of abuse.

      • Ersatz says:

        Thank you very much for this.

      • Mich says:

        Wow. Thank you.

      • Zinny says:

        You can wish her healing all you want but it’s kind of like the “thoughts and prayers” cliche – nobody’s wishing will change anything, not for her, and not for her children that she’s choosing to parentify. It’s her CHOICE and nothing will change until she makes a different CHOICE.

        She has absolutely zero obstacles getting away from her affair partner, she’s MARRIED to someone else who loves her and owns a comfortable home with her husband. At this point I absolutely do not consider her a victim but a willing participant — the only victims are her traumatized children, and again, it’s trauma that she CHOSE to put them through.

      • Julie says:

        @Zinny my sympathies to everyone in your life. To read all the comments that have kindly attempted to explain to you how developmental abuse makes you more susceptible to abuse throughout your life. The comments that have tried to teach you about victims locus of control and trauma bonding. And you still come up with this comment? Yeah, you are clearly a rigid unempathetic human. You are entitled to a shit take but for the love of God stop posting them on articles about abuse.

      • Zinny says:

        I grew up with this friend, we practically lived in each other’s homes. There was absolutely no abuse of any way, shape or form in this home. People “explaining” a situation with made up and incorrect excuses that do nothing but fit their own narrative is just a way for them to reinforce their own self-serving beliefs.

        The number of women who put their children through HELL because “I still love him no matter what he does” is off the charts and I’ll never make excuses for those people.

        Why are you making these excuses for women who choose to stay with a man who’s violent, and not for a man who is sexually abusing the kids? Because we could definitely use your excuses for those women too, yet they are excoriated when they choose their husband over and over and force their kids to grow up being molested, KNOWINGLY.

      • Kristen says:

        @Zinny You might consider that it’s easier for you – as a person outside of the abusive relationship – to say what your friend should be able to do. You knowing what’s happening simply isn’t the same thing as being the target of abuse. Of course to you there are clear right and wrong things as you haven’t been perpetually manipulated and abused. If you really want to help your friend get safely away from this individual, the best thing would be to back away from the judgment and derision, and reaffirm that you’re there for her whenever and for whatever she may need. You judging her in this way only serves to strengthen his hold over her; that it’s them vs. everyone else.

    • caitlinsmom says:

      It must be so nice for you to have all the answers. Your response generalizes your friend’s experience to ALL WOMEN when that is absolutely not the case. You also totally ignore the glorification of Male “artists” who not only are encouraged to abuse in the name of art, but are glorified for it. Your response ignores the power imbalance between men and women, and even more so the imbalance between famous men and women who are trying to make it in the entertainment industry. Finally, you ignore the fact that women have been socialized, from birth, for a millennia, to excuse male violence and to believe that love changes all.

      ignorance must truly be bliss.

    • Queen Meghan’s Hand says:

      Hi Dita Von Teese,

      “Incurred” was the word you used right?

      I think we can not infantilize women abuse victims while advocating that their abusers should receive material consequences regardless of how long the relationship lasted. Part of abuse is the psychological control. That’s not infantilizing, this is rooted in scientific inquiry.

      Part of an abuser’s violence is the ripple effect it inflicts on loved ones close to the abused.

      I am sorry for what you have experienced.

    • Becks1 says:

      Well, other people have commented on some of the worst parts of your post, so i’ll just add that in the full article (which is really horrifying), she says that she was able to “brush off” so to speak the torture video because it was “art.” She didnt expect that to be her life if she moved in with him. And then he spent two years grooming her before she moved.

    • Miss Margo says:

      By saying that you are effectively blaming the victim for not reacting the way you think they should have reacted in the situation. Shame on you for victim blaming.

    • ennie says:

      Someone famous on these threads on twitter, I think said:
      why are you complaining about the victims instead of pointing out the blame of the abuser?
      Yea, your friend is in the wring, but the abusive person is to really blame.

    • Josie Bean says:

      Zinny quote: “But she went back from London two YEARS after the torture video, back to him to move in with him. I know I’ll be canceled for saying this, but I just can’t with this at a certain point.”

      Exactly. I have read about young asian girls who are FORCED into marrying men who abuse them. They do not have a choice. They do not get the opportunity to do a “torture video” and then decide if they want to actually live with the guy who put them through so much physical pain.

    • Coco says:

      It seems like you’re allowing your resentment towards your former friend color all your perceptions about domestic abuse and that you’ve bought into the illusion of a ‘perfect victim.’

    • AlpineWitch says:

      It is obvious, from what you say, that your friend’s experience has coloured your views about what every abuse victim goes through.

      You should ask my mum why she chose to stay with my father for about 40 years in spite of what he was doing to his children or you might ask why I was still staying with my rapist after he raped me. I guess we are all stupid or weak people with no will, right?

      It must be nice to be so ignorant, in the end if I had a choice I would have chosen ignorance too. Pity that abuse was foisted on me since I was a baby, that must have been my fault as well.

      • Zinny says:

        Uh yeah, I absolutely would ask your mother why she chose to stay with your father despite whatever he was “doing to his children,” which doesn’t sound good.

        And maybe if more people had asked that at the time instead of just looking the other way or being enablers, the children wouldn’t have had to grow up with whatever that was being done to them.

      • ennie says:

        you really should thank whomever , including your parents from shielding you from abuse and help you be so enlightened, I cannot say assertive, as you come off aggressive in your comments.
        I’ve seen some social workers who act like you towards people in difficult situations. Not helpful at all.

      • Zinny says:

        You’ve seen social workers say this, Ennie? Were you in a situation where social workers were questioning your CHOICE to stay with a man who was harming your children, and you found that “unhelpful?” Maybe they were more concerned with helping your children than enabling your choice to repeatedly bring your children back to an abuser.

    • Kristen says:

      It can be incredibly difficult to leave an unproblematic relationship that you know isn’t working any longer, let alone one where someone is actively manipulating and abusing you. To want to leave or to want to say no to something simply isn’t the same as being able to. Neither Esme nor any other victims of abuse are responsible for what happened to them. Period.

    • local russian hill says:

      listen and read this. and try being part of the solution. thank you.
      https://the1a.org/segments/coercive-control-domestic-abuse/

    • Jenna says:

      I’m sorry about your friend. That must be really hard for everyone involved.

      In Esme’s case, it’s to the point where the FBI is investigating him for human trafficking. Maybe that was part of why she returned?

    • Sarah says:

      Your comments on this thread are so harmful, I don’t even know where to begin.

    • eggcentric1 says:

      This is what I don’t understand, too. After having such a bad, creepy experience filming with him and getting away safely, you choose to move in with him after? I don’t understand at all – she was free to go at that point and could have outed him as an abuser then. This story makes no sense to me.

  6. Grant says:

    This both sickens and enrages me. I’m not here to k!nk-shame but I will never understand this. To me, getting off on punishing, abusing, violating, and generally denigrating another person is repulsive. I wish someone would do this to Manson so he could experience the utter helplessness, vulnerability, and terror that he has made his female partners experience. Sending her pictures of the welts that HE GAVE HER?!?!? Unreal. I think I have been watching way too many documentaries lately about violence against women (the Night Stalker on Netflix being the most recent)… It’s all just very taxing and breaks my heart and maddens me at the same time. As a man, I have never been more aware of my privilege.

    • Julie says:

      Between this and the Armie Hammer stories, I am very happy to be called a kink shamer. Ladies and gentlemen some kinks should be shamed. This hijacking of feminism to normalise sexual violence must end. The silencing of any discussion about the psychology behind some of these people is super problematic. And the refusal to understand that consent is not a black-and-white concept is the most anti woman thing to come out of sex positivity.

    • YAS says:

      What he did isn’t “kink.” Anyone who’s serious about kink/fetish and active in that community will tell you about the strict boundaries that govern any such interactions. This is a man who is trying to disguise his abuse under the guide of kink/fetish because he knows most people in the general population don’t understand much of the nuance about this and will just look at it and write it off as kink between consenting adults that just resulted in something have regrets.

      • Anna says:

        Exactly. Thank you @YAS This is extreme abuse that has nothing to do with healthy kink and BDSM communities. Abusers know that people will conflate it and that are conflating it themselves in order to get away with being abusers. That’s how they get away with it, but in the meantime, it gets connected in people’s minds to whatever they think of as “kink” (usually un-researched especially into the healthy and loving practice) or BDSM. I’m sick and tired of abusive evil people being connected to and ending up defining a lifestyle and point of desire that has no relationship to the evil they do but rather is something beautiful when shared between loving and consenting adults. @Grant

      • Grant says:

        Let me be very clear. I am in no way trying to minimize or “conflate” what Manson did by saying it’s “k!nk.” On the contrary, I actually find the idea of people (1) getting off on being denigrated, degraded, and mistreated or (2) denigrating, degrading, and mistreating others unnerving and, frankly, kind of abhorrent, even if there are safe words in place and extensive after-care involved. Based on my experience (which is, admittedly, largely limited to reading the /r/sex subreddit) this kind of BDSM usually manifests itself in the context of a man exerting extreme domination over a woman. Consent or not, that practice is something that has always made me extremely uncomfortable. I simply referenced k!nk and k!nk-shaming in my comment because I have been lectured in the past for “k!nk-shaming” when expressing my discomfort at sexual practices that involve extreme submission on the part of the woman; I wanted to be careful in the words I used to discuss those practices.

    • CherHorowitz says:

      Your last line gave me hope Grant.

  7. Cel2495 says:

    He needs to be in jail.

  8. LillyfromLilooet says:

    So grateful to these brave women for speaking up.

    Manson should be in jail.

  9. Joanna says:

    When you’ve been abused before, for some reason you have a tendency to gravitate towards those type of men. Idk why. I was gang raped at 16 and all my life, I feel like i have to fight for myself to be with good people. Idk why. Idk if if deep down I feel like I’m “not worthy” or what it is but that’s the way it is for me.

    • ImSoSorry says:

      I’m so sorry, Joanna. I know I’m just a stranger on the internet but I’m here to add to the voice in your head that you’re definitely “worthy.” I found myself in an abusive relationship, without your back story, and it was so hard to get out.
      Don’t give up the fight to be with good people. You deserve it. <3

    • KL says:

      I once had a therapist that told me that people who come out of abusive situations or relationships have a mindset of hyper-vigilance. You know, so much of victim-blaming culture (as in these very comments) is along the lines of what the victims SHOULD have done, SHOULD have noticed, SHOULD have understood sooner, etc. So we become preoccupied with making sure we suffer no more surprises, take no more risks (because of course that’s the reason we were abused, right, not the independent actions of our abusers).

      This sounds… okay-ish, on paper, but as it was pointed out to me: “What can happen then is that people don’t seek out what feels good, which can also be a new and anxious experience. Consciously or not, they seek out what feels familiar.”

      Personally, it was a bit of a lightning bolt to my brain. So I thought I’d share.

    • detritus says:

      It’s not your fault.

      Our brains are creatures of habit, brains want to replicate things we saw when we were younger, what we grew used to, because there’s a certain comfort in familiarity.

      Knowing what we tend toward and understanding why (relationship attachment is a term you may want to explore if you haven’t come across it yet) is the first step to change and you’ve already got that started.

      You’ve survived some very big things, you’ve got this.

    • Grant says:

      Joanna–you are amazing and your strength is an inspiration to many, including myself. I am so sorry you had to experience that.

    • MarcelMarcel says:

      Hi Joanna my story is different from yours but I’m a rape survivor too. I love the work of Dr Nicole LePers The Holistic psychologist on insta. And Tara Brach’s book Radical Acceptance helped me too. As well as one on one sessions with a clinical psychologist who specialises in supporting queers and marginalised folk.
      Anyhow we’ve never met but I just want to give you the biggest hug. You survived the worst thing anyone can and you’re here and there will be so many positive, healing & fun moments for you ahead.

    • Joanna says:

      Thanks guys for all your nice comments!

  10. Kat says:

    For those of you saying “why didn’t she just leave?” — it took me five or six attempts over four years to finally leave my abusive ex (who I was with for a decade). It’s not always as simple as just walking away — as well as often being physically abusive, spousal/partner abusers have a mental hold on you and it takes time to cut through their web of psychic poison to be able to see a life on the other side of the pain you’re currently experiencing.

    I hope MM’s abuse survivors sue him into oblivion and he gets prison for a very, very long time.

  11. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    This monster needs to be behind bars with 24-hour round the clock florescent lighting.

  12. Size Does Matter says:

    It’s awful reading these stories from beautiful, famous, successful women and the abuse they suffer. And then to think about all the regular women out there in abusive situations with no voice and no hope and no way out.

  13. HME says:

    Anyone wondering why she moved in with him 2 years after the torture video needs to read more of the article. First of all I think its important to note that she was a huge fan of his when she was a teenager. So she was already under his spell before they’d even met. Secondly while this article kind of makes it sound like they weren’t in much contact during the 2 years between the video and her moving in with him they were actually engaged in a long distance affair the entire time and he was physically abusive whenever they were physically together. So he was grooming her and abusing her during those 2 years. Also worth noting is that her offered to help her get her work visa when he asked her to move in.

    That man is a vile piece of sh!t and I hope he gets sent down for life.