Deconstructing Lady Gaga • Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta (26), known by her stage name Lady Gaga, is an American singer and songwriter, from New York. • She began performing in the rock music scene of Manhattans Lower East Side, and was signed with Streamline Records by the end of 2007. • During her employment as a songwriter for the record company, her vocal abilities captured the attention of recording artist Akon, who signed her to his label Kon Live Distribution. • Lady Gaga invented herself, fashioning her oversized persona out of a mix of high and low culture; drag queens and heavy metallers, pop stars and random provocateurs. • Unlike Madonna, pop historys other great appropriator, Gaga, wears her influences proudly: Shes smarter than the average pop star. Better read. More extensively travelled. Deeper. And she wants you to know it.
Deconstructing “Paparazzi” • The song portrays Gagas struggles in her quest for fame, as well as balancing success and love. • The video acts as a „short film‟ reflecting a powerful message of fame and death of celebrity and its effect. • Throughout, it portrays several examples of situations people go through to be famous; pornography and murder being the main themes to the video. • It is 8 minutes long and features an attractive Alexander Skarsgard (Eric in „True Blood‟) as Gaga‟s boyfriend. • Narrative based, following the murder plot line of gaga as a pop star followed by the paparazzi and heavily revolves around the lyrics of the song.
“Paparazzi” continued• Bubble „comic-like‟ writing flashes onto the screen reading „A serial pictures production‟. Throughout this sequence various names flash onto the screen reflecting „opening credits‟.• Various quick cuts are used showing a pile of money on the floor imprinted with Gaga‟s face. This could be a use of branding Gaga as an artist, incorporating her alter ego within the scene.• Close ups are used of gaga and her boyfriend seen lying on a bed talking in Swedish; subtitles are imprinted on the screen again much like in a movie – music video has a very cinematic feel.• Gaga is seen wearing black heavy eye shadow and over exaggerated false eye lashes with a leather glove and „Dior‟ diamond rings; high fashion is a predominant feature within the video and highly associated with the artist choosing over exaggerated fashion choices. This is very postmodern, because it heavily relies on image and the outer shell of things.
More on “Paparazzi” • One showing gaga dancing and another of various dead models situated in different locations. • Several extreme close-ups are used of each model focusing facial features showing extravagant eye makeup and outfit – focusing on outward appearance. • At one point the camera uses a low angle shot of a model hanging from the ceiling. This choice of narrative and imagery reflects Gaga‟s extremity and attempt of steering away from the representation of pop videos; based around dance routines and „innocence‟. • Gaga is seen in heavy black eye makeup and a black leather outfit doing various dramatic hand gestures with frequent close ups of sexual facial expressions. • A scene is quite sexual as gaga licks one of the trio‟s hands and is seen kissing them often. This represents the artist as having a sexual image. Gaga is represented within the video as dark and unique, choosing to present various alter egos within her videos following different narratives presenting her as a versatile artist.