Lady Gaga's "Applause": An Analysis

By: Kaitlyn

There’s no hiding it, I’m a huge Gaga fan. I would even go so far as to consider myself a Little Monster. Yup. So it’s safe to say that I’ve been waiting for ARTPOP for what seems like my whole life.

And the wait is finally over.

I must admit, I was a little underwhelmed by “Applause” when I first heard it. I thought, “I waited two years for this?” I mean, it wasn't a "Born This Way" moment.

Then I realized how ungrateful and horrible that was to think that. So I listened to it a few (hundred) more times, and now I appreciate it.

And now, her music video just appeared this morning on GMA. And of course, everyone is asking, “What was that?”

So I’m here to tell you my analysis of the piece. I’m an English major, I have to analyze everything. To start analyzing the video, we have to analyze the song first.

Due to her hip injury, Gaga has been away from her fans for a while now, not being able to perform. This song is a huge “I’M BACCCCCKKK!!!”

“I stand here waiting
for you to bang the gong
to crash the critic saying:
is it right or is it wrong?”

She’s back and she’s going to cause more ruckus and continue to raise controversial issues and bring them forefront to the public eye.

In her hiatus, she has dearly missed her fans. Gaga is an artist that truly, truly lives for her fans.

She says, “If only fame had an IV baby could I bear,
being away from you I found the vein put in here.”

She wants her fame to radiate out into her fans. She wants them to have fame as well, because she thinks that every one of her fans is important, has a story to tell, and that story deserves to be told to the world. .

She lives for the applause. Now, that just sounds like a celebrity who is obsessed with themselves. Gaga is obsessed with fame, that’s for sure. But she lives for the applause in a way where when she hears the applause from her fans she knows that she has made a difference in their lives. Her music has touched her audience and changed them; that’s what she lives for.

So, that’s what the song is about. What about the video?

Now, I’m afraid I can’t analyze every second of the video, but I do think I understand the general gist of it.

It’s about transformation.

In the video, Gaga wears a variety, I mean a ton of different costumes and has a ton of looks. But the one that the video keeps going back to is a simple black piece. From that piece, she transforms into many different personas. It’s her obsession with changing, always wearing something eye-opening and bizarre.

The video goes with the words. She transforms when she performs her art to her fans. Her fans change her. She represents something different to each and every one of her fans. To some, she might be an angel of sorts wearing a large white sheet. To others she might be a magician making ideas appear out of a hat. And to others, a mermaid who finally has legs (maybe a call out to her “You & I” video?).

I’m afraid I have no idea what the whole swan-head thing is…Maybe to some she’s a swan. If someone can explain that to me that would be real nice.

This anthem is Gaga’s big return to her fans and to tell her fans that she will continue to be there for them. She will celebrate their differences, fight for them, and give them a voice in a world that currently calls that voice “weird.”

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Oh, hello!
We're Sarah and Kaitlyn, roommates from Milwaukee who started this blog to promote creativity and life.
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