Breaking It Down: The Product Placement of Lady Gaga’s ‘Telephone’ Video


Last night’s unveiling of the video for “Telephone” was an important event in gay bars and coffee shops worldwide, one that finally brought together two long-contentious fashionable tribes: fans of Lady Gaga and fans of  Beyonce. The video was significant for manifold other reasons. The nine-and-a-half-minute video was the second collaboration of Gaga and Swedish director Jonas Akerlund, and the singer even gets a co-writing credit on it (Notable dialogue: “You’ve been a very, very bad girl, Gaga,” followed by the two sharing some kind of truck stop snack cake). This was also the  longest time on record that we have seen Lady Gaga’s face. Previously, it had been withheld like a holy grail with veils, Photoshop, and rapid-fire editing. We also see all of Gaga’s lithe body, and at one point her blurred-out crotch. One grail remains un-captured, the blurring suggests.

Outside gay bars (but in a related domain) there was another cause for celebration. “Telephone” is a nearly ten-minute commercial for the brands Gaga loves, both ironically and not. Click for our top moments in the video’s product placement:


We can’t tell what cigarettes these are, but judging by the filters they’re definitely not Parliaments—and not even Gaga would survive smuggling American Spirits into a jail. That’s a Viktor and Rolf chain that made it through the security pat-down, by the way.

Every lady needs Chanel. And a handy tip from Gaga to women: when curlers won’t make it through security, try Diet Coke. And is that a Bess jacket she’s wearing? Also file under: “Unclear why it made it through the security pat-down.”

This is some of the only food that doesn’t get thrown up in the video.

Polaroid is the go-to film and camera brand for pop stars who need to have their photo taken now. Thankfully the brand is back after threatening to discontinue, Can we give Gaga credit for that?

Gaga isn’t so into virginity, it seems, but she certainly gives this phone her full attention.

This is not the logo for any brand we recognize, but at a later point in the song Gaga calls Beyonce “honey bee.” Some type of advertising is afoot—we can feel it!

The American Dream owes a lot to Gaga. Who else is bold enough to give Kraft Miracle Whip and Wonder Bread the synchronized dance it’s so long been due?

The lesbian dating service Gaga’s guards are using is real. Sign on! But will you be as good an inmate as Gaga?