Monday, February 28, 2005

Material Girl

Madonna. Icon. NO need for an introduction. The name says it all. Always a non-conformist diva, Madonna sort and embraced controversy. If it wasn't her cavorting in a wedding dress in "Like A Virgin" or prancing as Marilyn Monroe in "Material Girl", Madonna always had something to say.

While obviously targeting the commercialism of the early '80s, "Material Girl" is until today one of Madonna's most mis-interpreted songs. It's also the one song that had the biggest impact on Madonna's image with journalists and fans calling her a "Material Girl" up until today.

The single was a big hit all over the world when it was released in early 1985. Much effect on this success had the ultra-glamourous videoclip by Mary Lambert. In the pink-induced overload video clip, Madonna completely re-stages the famous "Diamonds Are A Girl's Best Friend" sequence from the Marilyn Monroe movie "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes."

It is now the image (and musically) Madonna avoids. She also slots into many roles in life. Musician. Actress. Artist. Mother. Wife. Rebel. Empire. Bourgeoisie. Evita. And it doesn't stop there. Her life is celebrated, worshiped and scorned. Her accomplishments fill a book. Her mistakes are analysed and watched. But what has made her "Madonna?"

Madonna. The icon. Popular culture. Music. Visual artist. It is this type of celebrity that continues to evolve, or re-invent (a much hated term, now ironically favoured). With every album, music video, world tour, movie or sighting, Madonna is constantly watched and adored. She continues to inspire, educate, dictate and reveal more layers of herself to the outside world. And today, it is still this world that finds fascination in her every move.


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