Remember, for a while there, when everyone was complaining that
Because on Thursday (June 16), Gaga premiered her brand-new video for "The Edge of Glory," a piece that's a little bit Madonna's "Papa Don't Preach," a little bit Michael Jackson's "Billie Jean" and a whole lot of " '80s videos where someone dances on a fire escape while smoke pours from a well-lit window."
There is no hyperkinetic, women-in-prison kink, no odes to Weimar Germany and no birthing of a machine gun. Shoot, there's not even a single Christian allegory to be seen (OK, maybe one, when Gaga strikes a Christ-like pose on the concrete).
Instead, "Edge" is little more than five-and-a-half minutes of classic pop, brimming with imagery, style (and moves) that could've been lifted from millions of videos in the pop heyday of the 1980s. It is Gaga's free-spirited youth in New York's East Village, only reimagined on a Hollywood level (in another nod to the videos of yesteryear, it makes no attempt to hide the fact that it was clearly shot on a "New York"-styled backlot): She sashays and struts on a fire escape, descends to the perfectly foggy, still-wet streets of the city, and poses on the front steps of her apartment building, while none other than Clarence Clemons hits a note-perfect saxophone solo. It is a fantasy in every conceivable way, and if it reminds you of something you've seen before, well, that's because you probably did — not just in '80s vids, but in films like "Fame" and Broadway hits like "Rent," too — and chances are you loved it.
And while all the feel-good nostalgia is dampened a bit by the very of the moment drama surrounding the video (Clemons is currently recovering from a stroke he suffered over the weekend), "Edge of Glory" still manages to shine, mostly because of its simplicity. You wanted a straightforward, dance-till-you-drop, unabashedly-indebted video from Lady Gaga? Well, now you've got one. It's not a stretch to call it a classic, mostly because, well, it is — at least in its inspirations. And its aspirations too.
What did you think of the video? Let us know in the comments!