Skip to comments.20 YEARS OF MADONNA
Posted on 12/15/2003 4:15:01 AM PST by JesseHousman
Nobody ever says, "Madonna who?"
She's part of our culture, an American success story who's maintained a media presence for 20 years now, re-inventing herself with every prevailing wind, while never, ever giving the impression she's doing anything other than what she wants to do. We are by turns impressed, embarrassed, shocked and amazed by Madonna's antics, but we're rarely surprised anymore.
Madonna, the dancer from Detroit, set out to become famous and succeeded beyond anybody's but her own wildest dreams. She's 45, and shows no signs of slowing down or relinquishing her place in the spotlight; in fact, she's been known to share it quite generously from time to time -- kissing Britney Spears was good publicity for both women, and if anybody knows publicity, it's Madonna.
Two decades have passed since the material girl first stormed the scene. That's a long time to hold America's attention, and many of us still recall when we first became aware of the phenomenon named Madonna.
I remember when I heard Madonna for the first time. It was 1990, I was 5 years old, and it was the night that HBO aired her Blonde Ambition World Tour, live from Madison Square Garden. My father was never a big Madonna fan, but he taped it that night, so I got to watch it again and again. That's when it all happened. I started dressing like Madonna, memorized her song and dance steps and had her posters hanging up all around my room.
When I started my Madonna collection, my family thought it was a stage. As the years passed, I got older and collected all her music, movies, concerts and specials. During my teen years, I stopped dressing like her, but kept listening to her music, and I have to say she helped me out during those years. She taught me to express myself and always be myself no matter what!
Many people are surprised by my admiration for Madonna, but I will say the inspiration I got from Madonna has, in many ways, made me the person I am today.
-- Angella Llewellyn, Dayton
A tiny-talented, average-looking girl from Detroit decided she was going to be a star and multimillionaire, and she did it! From the gitgo, she used every trick she could think of to shock people, using her body and sex to perpetuate this shock value. She broke all the rules . . .
Now that she has attained her goals, she is playing the role of the caring mother and wife, who is lily pure. Her smugness and arrogance during interviews is disgusting. I would rather be poor than get rich using sex and shock values. In my opinion, she is a sleaze and nothing but trailer trash. She humiliated her father.
-- Thomas J. Glaser
Years ago, when I was a teacher at a parochial school, the school had a special assembly for a talent show. We were all shocked when a young girl stood in front of the students and visiting parents and lip-synched Like a Virgin. Needless to say, new policies were quickly written for all future shows!
-- Dayton reader
Back in the late '70s and early '80s, I was a pure "rock 'n' roller." My music was hard and fast . . . I hated disco, Top 40s and anything that was asssociated with dancing.
Then one day in 1983 I was sitting on my beat-up couch, watching MTV, and this girl starts dancing and singing a song called Lucky Star. Her voice was great, she showed her belly and she just seemed overall so sexy! After that video, my whole attitude changed toward music. I started listening to Top 40 and going to dance clubs. Basically, Madonna single-handedly changed my whole taste in music! I love Madonna's attitude.
-- Chuck Biehn, Centerville
I guess I am a closet Madonna fan, as it's not easy for a 67-year-old to admit. I have been an avid fan since I saw Evita. I was prompted to watch the movie for its historical content because I remembered, as a child, my parents discussing Evita and Peron.
What I did not anticipate was that I would fall in love with Madonna's portrayal of Evita and that I would play the video over and over again. When she sang Don't Cry for Me, Argentina, I told my daughter that I wanted that song played at my funeral -- I may change my mind when I get closer to that stage in my life and pick a more appropriate song. But that song is Madonna at her best!
-- Yolanda Nava, Dayton
I am 23 years old, and considering I was only 3 when Madonna came out, my memories of her debut are limited but that doesn't mean I wasn't a fan from the beginning. (I remember) my two older sisters, in their teens, trying so hard to be like her and act like her. Sitting there watching them put on layers upon layers of eyeshadow is one thing I remember, and it was really great because when I sat there in awe of this, they would then play dressup with me and allow me to put on their makeup!
-- Heidi Macke
My friends and I were definitely Madonna wannabes! I remember my girlfriend buying a T-shirt that said "Boy Toy" on it. I think her older music is better, but probably because it stirs up so many memories. The fact that she is still going strong 20 years later I think is great. More power to her.
-- Davina Powell, Fairborn
When Madonna hit it big, I had not even been conceived ... yet I can still proudly claim that I have grown up listening to her songs, just maybe a few years too late. In my opinion, she is the apotheosis of a person. Madonna is one of the few superstars who never fell into addiction, because she always had the goal of brilliance in the back of her mind. I respect her constant rebirths and accepting views of the world.
It saddens me that people say her grasp on the media is weakening, because I know it's true. When I see her rolling on the floor with Britney, I can't help to think how much better she is than that. I mean, hell, you are a superstar, but you are still over 40 with kids!
-- Zhenya Karelina, Dayton
In 1983, I was 14 years old and a freshman at Catholic Central in Springfield. I did not copy Madonna's style, but I watched as other girls did -- let the uniform code war begin! Female students vs. faculty members. Girls tried to emulate Madonna, despite a "uniform dress code" in place.
I once used Madonna's lifestyle and song lyrics as a speech topic with the point being she was misunderstood. I spoke longer than needed, wasn't finished when the bell rang, and the teacher gave me an 'A'.
I love the movie Desperately Seeking Susan and I own the video of Who's That Girl. I never saw any of her other movies. I liked her MTV videos, including the controversial Like A Prayer. I lost interest in her when she hit her girls-gone-wild+infinity stage. I've liked a song here and there since then, but the '80s were the best.
-- Lisa Schuler, Dayton
I was a window clerk at the Dabel Post Office in the '80s. One Christmas season a woman came to my window and asked for some Christmas stamps. I asked her if she wanted the contemporary or the Madonna. She looked at me strange and said, "Contemporary, I don't even like Madonna's music. Why would I want her on a stamp?" I then pulled out both kinds of stamps and said to her, "Madonna, as in Mother and Child." The customer started laughing and I could tell she was more than embarrassed by what she had said! This has been a favorite story that I have loved to tell for years!
-- Jamie Hamilton, Forest Park
Laura, thanks to her father, has developed into a world class nincompoop who now writes dribble for The Dayton Daily Worker.
Parents who allow their children to watch and listen to the anti-culture whores and what passes for modern "culture" need to have their heads examined.
A GREAT ROLE MODEL FOR AMERICA'S CHILDREN
"who the hell she is" - she's a 45 year old, 'riches and fame' money wh*re. Simple.
LOL! Well said.
She started dressing like Madonna at age 5. She must have driven herself to the mall in her battery-operated Barbie beach cruiser? No need, the dad or a slut mother surely helped her shop. The dad was probably irked that the thong undies didn't fit until she was 7. Oh wait a minute, I shouldn't say that. I'm presuming that Madonna actually wore undies.
Well golfballs & garden hoses and all that rot.
oh yea, & not to forget.