Sunday, March 6, 2011

Breaking Down Lady Gaga's "Born This Way"


Having trouble understanding all of the Metropolis-meets-Sin City-meets-Superman imagery in Lady Gaga's latest epic video for "Born This Way?"  Or do you just think the Strange-inspired birth scene is a little icky?

Freelance writer Aylin Zafar has a very interesting and in-depth take on the whole spectacle, and analysis the clip and all its references, from start to finish. For example, Zafar explains the pink inverted triangle and unicorn at the opening of the video:

Our journey into Lady Gaga's space-age utopia opens with some telling, very Gaga imagery set against the opening music from Vertigo, scored by Bernard Herrmann. The film was directed by the master of psychological thrillers, Alfred Hitchcock, who is one of the singer's noted inspirations. The clip opens with an inverted pink triangle, a symbol for gay rights, but originally used as badge required to be worn by homosexual men in Nazi concentration camps. In case you've been living under a rock, "BTW" is about gender equality and gay rights, so no surprise here.



Within the triangle, we see a city skyline (a heavy nod to Metropolis, but more on that later) and...a unicorn. Whee! The unicorn matters for several reasons: not just campy and fun, the unicorn serves as a metaphor for strength in the Hebrew Bible—depicted as "powerful, fierce, wild"—which is what Gaga is championing here. Perhaps even more interesting is the unicorn's medieval significance: The creature was popularized during that time through a story about a unicorn who was tamed by a virgin maiden; the unicorn became a symbol for the relationship between Virgin Mary and Christ—pure love and immaculate conception. And, wouldn't you know it, Lady Gaga describes the process of recording "Born this Way" to Vogue in their latest issue, saying: "the gates just opened, and the songs kept coming. It was like an immaculate conception."

Read the full piece here.
Related Posts with Thumbnails