Sunday, January 21, 2018

Bad Romance

This is where I ruin that Lady Gaga song everyone likes

Bad Romance is a grossly underrated song.

The two halves of the song mirror each other wonderfully. Ugly is echoed by horror, and disease rhymes with design as the first lines of both halves so that all the stuff in the middle is sandwiched together perfectly.

Plus, all the movie references in both halves strengthen that bond. Leather studded kiss in the sand is a reference to Sandy getting her leather kiss in Grease. And psycho, vertigo, and rear window are all references to Alfred Hitchcock movies.

What do all the movies have in common? The horror of romance? The dangers of love? The acceptance of our worst attributes? Who knows? Who really cares? Thematically, it works with the mechanics of the song in such a tight way that all the weird French stuff and the Fashion/Real Bitch bridge thing that happen in the original version are there just for fluff that work because the rest of the song is so damned strong.

My favorite part of the song is "I don't want to be friends." In the original version I swear I hear "I don't want to be French" the first time she says it after the French part of the song. But that could just be my lying ears.

Who can't relate to the sentiment of wanting more than friendship from someone? The complete letdown and heartbreak contained in the last few lines of the song, the idea that even a bad romance is better than friendship, is something I think everybody can relive at the close of the song. For a pop song to leave you lamenting one-sided love is impossible, so Lady Gaga belts out the chorus a few more times in the original.

It's a tricky little song in a lot of ways. Bad Romance has plenty for your brain to suss out and it happens to come in a fun package. I hope you like my stripped down version of it.

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