"Lolita" is a song recorded by Australian duo The Veronicas, released on 27 July 2012. It was written by The Veronicas' Jessica Origliasso and Lisa Origliasso, together with Laura Pergolizzi and Toby Gad, while production was handled by Gad. Intended as the lead single to the shelved third studio album Life on Mars, "Lolita" was not included on The Veronicas' re-titled third studio album The Veronicas released in November 2014 through Sony after the duo left Warner in late 2013. The song charted at number twenty three on the ARIA Singles Chart.
Taking its name and inspiration from the 1955 novel of the same name by Vladimir Nabokov, the song draws on the experiences by Lisa and Jessica, of ex-boyfriends and male music executives who would try to manipulate them. In an interview with Noise11, "Lolita" was described by Lisa as, "kind of dark – it's a little bit mysterious and a little bit provoking in a sense." Explaining the theme of the song in the same interview, Jessica stated: “To us, Lolita, is about power play... It’s the power play between genders and age groups, as well as people’s perception of taboo, boundaries, what is acceptable and what a Lolita is: She’s a bad-ass and she’s on a mission. She wants to destroy something, either her own perception of what’s right and wrong or everyone elses. She wants to prove something to herself.”
The artwork features a photograph of Jessica and Lisa's mother, Colleen, in her late twenties. After coming across old photos of her, they found there was "something haunting about that particular shot". The sepia toned picture has a curved white border surrounding the edge; in the photo, Colleen is seen standing against a blank wall with both hands behind her back; her hair is parted in the centre and sits on her shoulders and her eyes are directed to her left; she is wearing a buttoned down, long sleeve pleated shirt, underneath a short black dress; the loudspeaker to her bottom-left has a torn white patch on the grille. Above the speaker are the words "The Veronicas" apexing "Lolita", written in black and red capital letters, respectively in impact font.
On 5 July 2012, the title of the single was revealed through an eight second YouTube video. The first lines of the chorus and second verse was leaked on their Twitter account on 12 July and 21 July, respectively. "Lolita" was premiered on 2day FM on the Kyle and Jackie O show on 26 July, and the digital single and lyrics video was released the following day. The first remix by DJ Connor Cruise was published on SoundCloud on 31 July.
PopBytes' Alex Nagorski compared "Lolita" to the grungy sound of Life on Mars and said it "...remains a master class in contemporary pop." He also added "It manages to not feel out of place for mainstream radio while simultaneously being completely unique and challenges the conventions of the genre."
"Lolita" debuted at number twenty nine on the ARIA Singles Chart on 5 August 2012 and peaked at twenty three.
The music video for "Lolita" was directed by Spencer Susser of Blue-Tongue Films. The Veronicas worked on the concept with Susser, wanting to visually explore the "darker side of love through fantasy and science-fiction". Jessica commented on Susser's work, saying: "His cinematic presence brought to life the visual symbolism prevalent in our story of star-crossed love -- and the revenge that follows."
The Veronicas encountered problems with their record label who were concerned about the public response to the videos concept. In an interview with James Wigney of the Herald Sun, Jessica explained: "They were questioning a few things of the video content of Lolita... And someone piped up saying 'girls, what's your demographic? Do you think you might upset a few people?... I said, 'The song's called Lolita; - this is our personal lives, we are living this. We are not making this s--- up; we are writing about things that are close to home and you might want to rethink the single if you are rethinking the concept of the video'."