Thursday, May 20, 2010

Videography - Lady Gaga (Part I - The Fame)

Lady Gaga has been yet another one of my musical phases, so I decided to do her videography. After the release of her most recent video, "Telephone", I felt it was necessary to view the development of her music video style and how it got to be at this epic, ten minute place with stunning visuals that no other artist can get away with.

Order: 1
Title: "Just Dance"
Album: The Fame (2008)
Song Premise: Despite being drunk, phoneless, keyless, and manless, the narrator decides to just (you guessed it) dance the night away.
Video Premise: Lady Gaga and gang go to a house party that is seemingly dead. Everyone is awakened when Gaga puts on some new tunes and the young fashionable sociables  drink, dance, and look fashionable while doing so.

Comments: Honestly, this video is pretty much everything you would expect it to be. The song is about partying. The video is about partying. Although the quit editing and big cast make it visually stimulating. This is certainly the most glamorous house party I've ever seen (which I know doesn't say much about my social life!) Also, I found the 70's era architecture to be believable. Poor kids in their 20's are likely to rent homes from that era.

Order: 2
Title: "Beautiful, Dirty, Rich"
Album: The Fame (2008)
Song Premise: The song is about being poor yet having a sense of entitlement and ego. You're rich if you think you are...basically.
Video Premise: In an empty mansion, Gaga frolics around, writhes around in a huge pile of money, and dances while her friends occasionally frolic with her.

Comments: The "Beautiful, Dirty, Rich" video is quite similar to the "Just Dance" video because it shows Gaga and her friends in a similar context and setting with no real point. Unlike its predecessor, this song could have a deeper video. Instead, it's kind of a carbon copy which, unfortunately, cheapens the song.

Order: 3
Title: "Poker Face"
Album: The Fame (2008)
Song Premise: The narrator muses how she can get men hot and bothered, but really has no heart or meaning behind her actions whether to continue physically or emotionally.
Video Premise: Lady Gaga emerges from a pool by a mansion. She attends a party where she and several men and women play a game of strip poker. Various dancing and random shots.

Comments: "Poker Face" is the first video to really get, ahem, Gaga. There are several random, WTF moments that, at least to the viewing audience, have absolutely nothing to do with the song. Like, Great Danes? Why? I guess, why not is the better question. Strip poker is inevitable but I can't help but feel the lyrics weren't fully utilized.

Order: 4
Title: "Eh, Eh (Nothing Else I Can Say)"
Album: The Fame (2008)
Song Premise: A woman, very sweetly, ends her relationship after she meets someone new.
Video Premise: In an Italian-American 50's-esque New York, Lady Gaga chats with her friends, is then she is shown in a housewife role, and then heckled by well meaning men.

Comments: This is definitely the lightest of all of Lady Gaga's videos, and perhaps the least sexual. At times it feel it could be a Britney video from the late 90's...with weirder clothing. It's fun and not at all heavy handed. There really isn't a point which makes me wonder why it was chosen as a single.

Order: 5
Title: "LoveGame"
Album: The Fame (2008)
Song Premise: A woman wants to have sex...yeah, that's pretty much it.
Video Premise: Lady Gaga dances in the subway station, then inside the subway, then she makes out with one of the security guards.

Comments: Simple and sexual...just like the song. Need I say more?

Order: 6
Title: "Paparazzi"
Album: The Fame (2008)
Song Premise: A woman claims she is a man's biggest fan and to follow him like paparazzi.
Video Premise: Lady Gaga is making out with her boyfriend in their mansion. He takes her outside on the balcony. When she refuses to pose for the paparazzi's cameras, he pushes her off the side. She survives, but returns home in a wheelchair. Through dance, she recuperates. Meanwhile, the video is intercut with shots of dead/murdered supermodels and Lady Gaga in a four-way with a trio of musicians. At the end, Gaga is still with her boyfriend but she poisons his drink and then turns herself into the police. Fame is hers once again as she goes to prison.

Comments: Oh, how I love videos about fame! Why? I have no idea, but I do love this video. It's one of my favorites of all time. Interestingly, it doesn't have much to do with the lyrics of a woman sickeningly devoted to a man. It still deals with paparazzi, most definitely, but on another level. Again, the visuals really get me. I like the dead super models. I like the revenge. I like the extended cinematic beginning. Props!

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