After premiering a 22 second teaser on Larry King last Tuesday, the nearly nine-minute video premiere for Gaga’s current single, “Alejandro,” is now available for your consumption. In what Gaga has dubbed a tribute to the gay community in which she’s “pining for the love of my gay friends but they just don’t want me,” the “Alejandro” video seems to be more of a tribute to music video past. From the industrial metropolis of Madonna’s “Express Yourself” to the black and white cadence stomp of Janet Jackson’s “Rhythm Nation 1814,” director Steven Klein—most famous for his work with, you guessed it, Madonna—pays homage to the women for whom Gaga owes a great deal.
However, what sets Lady Gaga apart from current pop-stars today is her willingness to openly embrace the impact her role models have had on her. From the artists Gaga has emulated most heavily—Grace Jones, David Bowie, Madonna, the list goes on—Gaga readily and joyfully likens herself to a tapestry of her pop-culture past, present, and future. Much like her idol Andy Warhol, she acknowledges the transience of art and image in the pop-culture sphere. And, much like Madonna and Michael Jackson, she realizes the duty of being in show business: to entertain.
From a fashion perspective, Gaga is unparalleled in the music industry today. With costumes inspired by Marc Caro and Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s The City of Lost Children, The Third Reich, and a Halloween S&M party, “Alejandro” also plays host to machine gun bras, Caesar-do’s aplenty, red latex nuns habits, and enough underwear to make a Victoria’s Secret catalogue blush.