The lyrics describe the protagonist's frustration of being hounded by others for his comments, to which he replies "I was only joking".
During the song, the protagonist compares himself to Joan of Arc as the flames rose to her Roman nose. The proceeding line, "and her Walkman started to melt'", is often changed by Morrissey in live performances, to the more technologically-current "and her iPod started to melt".
The high-pitched voice in the background is actually Morrissey's voice altered to a higher pitch. The backing vocal is credited to "Ann Coates", a reference to the Manchester district of Ancoats.
The song is covered by Placebo, who substitute the words "Discman" and "Mega Drive" for the original "Walkman" and "hearing aid". It appears as a B-side to "Nancy Boy", as well as on Disc 2 of the Sleeping with Ghosts special edition and on the various artists compilation The Smiths Is Dead. "Bigmouth Strikes Again" has also been covered by Treepeople, The Entertainment System, Balance and Composure, Slapshot, and The Ukrainians (under the title "Batyar"). The British electronic musician LorD and Master recorded a cover of "Bigmouth Strikes Again" as part of his 2011 covers album, Discover. In this version, LorD and Master uses the words "iPhone" and "iPad" in place of "Walkman" and "hearing aid", following the trend that Placebo had set in the 1990s.