The video: At long last, the video for Lady Gaga's "Judas," the second single off her Born This Way album, has arrived. (View it below.) It features thuggish bikers, a stylish Jesus, gaudy fingernails, a gold gun that shoots lipstick, and Lady Gaga herself as a belly-bearing Mary Magdalene who's prone to performing simplistic dance moves in sync with others.
The reaction: Though Gaga has stuffed "Judas" with noise and provocation, "this feels less 'eventful' than videos past," says Willa Paskin in New York. Been-there-done-that, says Maura Johnston in the Village Voice. It's "drenched in a murky soup of signifiers and symbols" and contrived to create controversy, but "all I can wonder is, 'How would the 'Like A Prayer' video have been received in the age of Twitter and SEO-happy music blogs...?' And then I sigh." No, look "beyond [Gaga's] casting as Mary Magdalene, the biker outfits and torrid love triangle and 'Judas' isn't peddling cheap controversy," says Christy Choi in TIME. A closer viewing reveals that Gaga is "moving in a new direction from her bluffin' muffin,' Poker Face days" and getting more philosophical. And sure, you can say you've seen it before, but "what other music video shows a public stoning?" Check out the video: