The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus


Not so gaga over Gaga

Okay, I’m sure you’ve all been waiting for it, so here it is: my official statement on Lady Gaga.

In the space of 15 minutes, I was subjected to both the “Bad Romance” and “Telephone” music videos.

Let’s begin with “Bad Romance” since it was the better of the two. Lady Gaga herself has described this video as feminist, and I suppose if I really stretch my imagination I can see why. After all, she is horribly brutalized in the beginning and she does kill a man in the end.

For those of you who haven’t seen it, let me recap: Lady Gaga lies in a tub, after which she is dragged out by two women, forced to drink some stuff that might be water (or vodka) and then forced to dance seductively for a group of men in a pristine, “2001”-style room. Then after several minutes of such dancing, she is placed alone in a bedroom with the leader of the men, presumably to have sex with him. But right before they do the deed, she sets fire to him and watches the entire bed he was lying on go up in flames.

Now there certainly seems to be some hearty amounts of brutalization at the beginning, what with the dragging and the “watka” being poured down Lady Gaga’s throat, and you can see the pain and humiliation on her face as she’s stripped of her clothes and thrown onto the dance floor.

But between the time that she’s thrown onto said dance floor and when she subsequently burns the chauvinistic male pig to a crisp, I think she gets a little too into the dancing.

The aforementioned pain and humiliation mysteriously disappear from one shot to the next, as Lady Gaga forgets that this is supposed to be a horrible situation for her character and she begins to throw herself into the performance. She clearly enjoys shaking her hips and thrusting her pelvis, all the while wearing practically nothing. And regardless of the reasons why (maybe she really did forget, or she just likes “performing” too much to let it take a backseat to her acting), it does make the whole feminist argument lose a lot of credibility.

Now for “Telephone.” First off, and I acknowledge that this has less to do with Lady Gaga specifically than with music videos in general, I really hate it when a music video tells a story that has nothing to do with the song. Lady Gaga and Beyoncè are singing about being hassled with phone calls from their men while they try to enjoy themselves at a club, but what’s the video about? Lady Gaga’s in prison, then she gets bailed out by Beyoncè, then they go kill Beyoncè’s (presumably) abusive boyfriend, along with everyone else in the diner. That is stupid. It just is.

The entire prison sequence, for example, not only has nothing to do with the song, but it also doesn’t further the plot of the video in any way. Lady Gaga achieves absolutely nothing before she’s bailed out by Beyoncè, so why is it there? Because it gives Lady Gaga a chance to dance in nothing but lingerie whilst making out with the butch lesbian stereotypes that occupy the prison. Remind me again how this could potentially not be offensive or degrading to women?

And then there’s the scene in the diner. “Let’s make a sandwich!” Um, why? Oh, so we can see that she poisoned it! Wait, why are we killing this guy again? All we’ve seen him do is insult Beyoncè and “flirt with” another woman. That doesn’t mean he should die.

Then we find out that Lady Gaga poisoned everyone in the diner. How is that empowering?

Normal people don’t want to go on a killing spree. Serial killers want to go on a killing spree. But in the video’s zeal to come off like a Tarantino film, the production team glorified killing and made Lady Gaga and Beyoncè dress in (once again) practically nothing so they can dance amongst the dead bodies.

Then the pair drives off into the sunset to safety, but my question is: Who’s safe from them?

Trey Treviño is a sophomore CTV major. He can be reached for comment at [email protected].


More to Discover