There are some things in life and art that are plainly obvious to both the creator and the spectator. No one's looking for hidden meaning in Transformers or the cover of a Cheerios box (although...). Then there are those pieces of richly layered art which may seem obvious, but in reality have guarded their true secrets under a fine facade. It's time to scratch beneath the surface of one such painting and reveal, finally, its true history.
Leonardo da Vinci's masterpiece has been hailed as the greatest painting ever put to canvas by more than one art critic, but they have failed to bring to light the true mysteries behind this mysterious girl. Art lover and layman alike have burdened themselves with the question: what is she smiling about?, but that is simply a piece of misdirection, masterfully laid in place by Leonardo himself. You thought there were secrets hidden in The Last Supper? No, no. Here is where the secrets lie.
You see, what many people don't know is that Leonardo da Vinci was Italian. As in, he was actually from Italy, a place of evil and darkness. In the 16th century, as today, Italy was rife with two things: spaghetti and the Mafia. Leonardo da Vinci invented the former and was a prominent member of the latter, rising as far as consigliere in the De Luca family before being gunned down at an abandoned warehouse for selling heroin to the mulanyans in south central Rome, expressly against Don De Luca's wishes.
Mona Lisa, whose real name was Lisa del Giacondo, was in reality the wife of powerful silk merchant "Big Joe" Giacondo, with whom the De Luca crime syndicate had extraordinary bad blood, due to some matters involving six goats and a shipment of cocktail dresses that "should have never made it off the truck". While most of his compatriots in the Family regarded Leonardo's painting as something to be endured, rather than celebrated (or, as one high ranking member put it: "pure faggotry"), he was well known in the greater community as a wonderful artist. It was this reputation that brought Big Joe to commission Leonardo to paint his daughter, with the secret hopes that Leonardo would be wiled by her charm, fall in love, and his problems with the Family would disappear.
Unfortunately for Giacondo, when Don de Luca heard about the painting, he insisted Leonardo play a trick. You see, in that era there was no greater insult to a woman than to suggest she had no eyebrows. Strange, but true. The boss commanded that Leonardo paint Giacondo's daughter perfectly, but leave off the eyebrows. The insult would be felt throughout generations of Italians, and it would be sweeter revenge than any bloodshed could possibly bring.
Though reluctantly, Leonardo did as his Don instructed. To his surprise, however, by the time he had finished the painting, de Luca had grown bored of waiting, had fitted both Giacondo and his daughter with cement shoes, and relocated them to a watery grave at the bottom of the Mediterranean. The painting, however, went on to become an enormous success, as people from all over gathered to gaze in wonder at the Mona Lisa, which meant, literally, "Lisa, of bare eyebrow".