This is EXACTLY how I wanted Hillary Clinton to come out in New Hampshire. Guess she’s been scooped.
I know a lot of people loved this performance, but it left me cold. I piss and moan practically every year about the National Anthem, though, including all the same boring objections to the way people modify the tune — I WILL NEVER BE SATISFIED — so I won’t repeat the regular gripes here. Just close your eyes and imagine the words you have been forced to read so many times before. (I name-checked the Whitney Houston version the other day before realizing I haven’t actually listened to it in like 15 years, so I have NO IDEA anymore what she did in it; I think my subconscious just DECIDED it’s good because she and her voice came to such a sad end.)
Anyhoo: I think Gaga generally has a great voice, but she sounded strained for parts of it, and not as powerful as I’ve heard her elsewhere. She’s sounded better on Saturday Night Live. She also dragged out the beginning a bit too much for me. (You can’t spell ‘melodrama’ without ME.) Interestingly, there is a gambling subplot: Vegas put the over/under at 2 minutes and 20 seconds, and some bookies timed it at 2:29, and some timed it at 2:09. So your payout depends ENTIRELY on where you happened to bet. I am not sure if anyone bet on her looking like a cross between Dolly Parton and Tootsie (the latter reference courtesy of Twitter; I cannot take credit), but if you did, congrats. You probably got rich.
And yes, that’s a bedazzled microphone AND ear piece, to go with her patriotic nails and jacket and eyeshadow. I know this is a LOT of red, but riddle me this: Does the lipstick seem like a cop-out? I mean, if you’re going all in, don’t leave one toe poking above the water line.