Lady Gaga’s video for “Marry The Night,” which landed early yesterday evening, is the latest manifestation of the pop star’s ever-more-outsized ambitions. The 14-minute-long, supposedly autobiographical clip, which has a Gaga director credit, travels from a particularly metacommentary-rich psych ward to a studio apartment that’s so threadbare, the bathtub’s in the living room to a couple of dance rehearsals where Gaga seems particularly pugilistic to a junkyard where cars blow up as a matter of course to a nighttime dance scene that’s vaguely reminiscent of Madonna’s Dark Ages Of MTV clip for “Burning Up” to the precipice of her first meeting with Interscope Records. The above shot of Gaga covered in Honey Nut Cheerios is from a freakout scene midway through the clip that’s supposed to mirror her reaction to being dropped from her first major-label deal, although the moral of the story is that believing in yourself (and engaging in the occasional cereal bath/hair-bleaching session during your lower points) does tend to work out; after all, winding up where she did served as sort of a lucky break for her, since not many labels these days are willing to work a debut album as tirelessly as Interscope worked The Fame a couple of years back. And indeed she does celebrate her liberation by dancing to “Marry,” which still sounds as WKTU-terrific in this slightly tweaked mix. Clip below.
Watching this clip, with its lengthy intro that will no doubt be chopped by those video outlets who have ad blocks scheduled every 10 minutes, made me flash back to the first time I saw the clip for “Paparazzi,” which was directed by Jonas Åkerlund and which was Gaga’s first video to burst outside of the time constraints of its attendant song. At the time, I rolled my eyes at the spectre-of-fame-obsessed clip—blame the Gaga Overload Of Summer ’09, not to mention the rapid-response nature of blogging, which certainly increases one’s tendency to drum one’s metaphorical fingers on the metaphorical table. But I eventually succumbed to its charms, and given the stunning cinematography and attention to sartorial detail of both videos it’s not hard to see them as of a piece, only played in reverse chronological order.