It is no secret that I'm a Lady Gaga fan. I loved her concert and had such a fantastic time with James. I continue to love Gaga and what she does...
Part of my fascination with her is her music videos, aside from the fact they are so different than anything that is out there, a lot of the contents of her videos are social critiques, which is typical of performance artists who often critique various events in society in their work.
Before I start I have to say that Lady Gaga's new video Telephone surprised me. I knew there was a lot of hype surrounding it, so it was going to be big, but this was BIG, EPIC perhaps. I pictured the video being something about what was described in the song, a club scene, which could have been portrayed easily, and I'm sure would have been done in typical Gaga style, but this was different and great, too.
Lady Gaga said herself on E Entertainment that it is a critique of issues in society. I remember analyzing videos in AP English 11 and 12, and talking about hidden meanings/messages, as well as taking many film classes, and discussing hidden meanings/symbolism, so this was up my alley. Here are a few of the things I saw when I watched it. Yes, I have analyzed all of her videos. Maybe I'm crazy. I just love that there are perhaps so many hidden messages in her videos. I love all of the possible social critiques/possible meanings in this video. Some of the symbolism is just awesome.
Here's some of the topics I noticed in the video that could be argued about in the video:
- Jail scene- where Paparazzi left off perhaps- remember in the video paparazzi Lady Gaga just killed her boyfriend
- Friendships: the strong friendship between Gaga and Beyonce
- Strong female friendships- girl power! Society often talks about girl power and girls are better than boys!
- Females do not need to be subservient to the male, hence Beyonce and Gaga poisoning Tyrese and other men in the diner/strong female figures shown in the prison/ the line "I told you she didn't have a dick" (1:12)/ leather bondage gear shows female as masculine figures
- Gaga put to rest all of the rumors she is a guy or hermaphrodite (1:12)
- Cigarette glasses (1:27) - Drugs in prison, burning people up (killing them)?
- A critique on female prisoners?
- The brutality in the prison system (female prisoners beating up on one another)
- The prevalence of prison in our society
- The "ugliness" in prisons- those weren't necessarily the hottest looking people
- Butch guards (:30), were they male?
- Coke cans in Gaga's hair- coke the drug in prisons and its prevalence, how people try to sneak things into the prisons
- (1:38) Lady Gaga bound in chains symbolizes people being bound in prison
- Female sexiness- there is something sexy about the dancing (starting about 3:25)
- Police tape around 4:10 could symbolize danger, dangers prisoners face, danger these people are to society as Gaga is wrapped in police tape
- (4:27) plenty of fish dating showing the prevalence of online dating
- (5:05) animalistic nature how Gaga takes a bite of that food Beyonce has in her hand.
- (5:20-5:30) Beyonce talking with Gaga about trust, showing how perhaps a man did her wrong, cheated perhaps, which is a common problem in society
- Females are objectified by men (6:00-15)- the way the camera zooms in on Beyonce's assets, slapping one of the females ass
- Pussy Wagon- can mean a homosexual activity
- Pussy Wagon- from Kill Bill- a pop culture reference
- Poison in the kitchen (7:05) talking about unsanitary conditions, perhaps the poison in the food relating to fast food or mass produced food?
- Setting is a cafeteria, and cafeteria can have a negative connotation. Would you choose to eat at a cafeteria or a restaurant?
- The bad things workers do to food (a much more intense play on the server spitting in the food?)
- (7:09) One of the ingredients is rat poison, which again could be used to discuss the unsanitary conditions in restaurants/cafeterias
- (7:04) "Poison TV" logo- does TV poison you and the mind?
- (7:07) White powdery substance with a danger logo- perhaps salt, perhaps coke? Who knows, but it is something dangerous. If it is salt you can talk about the extra sodium that is typically found in mass produced food that is used to preserve it.
- (7:10-20) Men are pigs- Tyrese eats his food quickly and sloppily
- (7:27-35) Beyonce says, "I knew you took all of my honey you selfish mother******" - Beyonce is seen as pure and wholesome. She is a relatively good influence one can argue and kids can idolize, so she was bleeped out, which is more pure than Gaga who during the scene where she was riding in the Pussy Wagon said motherfucker
- (7:27-:35) Honey could mean money?
- (7:35) Beyonce pulls out the same mouse glasses Gaga has in the Paparazzi video after she killed her boyfriend, so in essence Beyonce is doing the same thing.
- (7:32) Gaga's nails are painted with a flag design, which can denote patriotism
- Beyonce's yellow dress is a relatively pure color
- Wonderwoman like outfits in the scene following the diner, showing female power
- (7:30-8:00) Dead people- poison perhaps from drugs (the prevalence of drugs in society), or the danger of mass produced cafeteria-style food
- the lyric "stop telelphoning me" could represent how women do not need to be bound to their husbands or boyfriends
- (8:15-8:30) Beyonce is using a corded telephone in the bedroom, which could show some nostalgia
- (8:46-55) Breaking News scene where Gaga and Beyonce are fleeing the scene- critique about news and how it is about suspects and bad people - News is often about crime stories
- (9:15) Female bond, women are strength when they join hands at the end
I'm not saying any of this is true, I'm not saying I believe all of this, I'm just merely analyzing, which I enjoy doing. You may say I'm crazy or overanalyzing, and sure, I'll buy that, but I just like it more after doing it... haha. I'm also not saying you have to agree with all of my thoughts. I am not necessarily saying I agree with every idea I threw out.
But I guess what I'm also trying to say is there is so much in this video! Like did you see Gaga's telephone-do at about 7:00-7:15?
Anybody else find any other symbols?