“I don’t know if people know this about me,” says Lady Gaga in the interview that accompanies her new British Vogue cover. She then proceeds to spout a claim that, actually, the general public had no previous knowledge about: “If I weren’t who I am today, I would have been a combat journalist. That was one of my dreams.” Yes, apparently there is some sort of alternate timeline in which New York Times stringer Stefani Germanotta is filing copy directly from Kabul.
The revelation came as Gaga was discussing her gig performing the national anthem at Joe Biden’s inauguration this past January, just one day after supporters of Donald Trump had stormed the U.S. Capitol building. “When I was at the Capitol, the day before the inauguration, I remember walking around and looking for evidence of the insurrection,” she says.
The claims quickly attracted the bewilderment of some segments of Twitter who have been asked over the years to imagine Gaga as the archetypal tragic blonde starlet, a Beyoncé-assisted murderess, and leader of the Kindness Punks on the war-torn planet of Chromatica, but never as an actual journalist gathering facts in the field amid the heat of combat.
But we do have a suspicion that Gaga could have actually found success as some sort of journalist, if not necessarily a combat journalist. The woman has an innate understanding of the news cycle and what actually piques the interest of the public that is demonstrably stronger than more than a few working journalists we could name (or media executives, for that matter). She also has a knack for combining words and images together to get her point across. If a large part of her rise to fame is an ability to make news, shouldn’t she be given the benefit of the doubt that she’d be able to report it as well?
Gaga later extends the journalist metaphor into her approach to acting, specifically for her role in the true crime-inspired House of Gucci. “I only felt that I could truly do this story justice if I approached it with the eye of a curious woman who was interested in possessing a journalistic spirit so that I could read between the lines of what was happening in the film’s scenes,” she tells British Vogue. “Meaning that nobody was going to tell me who Patrizia Gucci was ...Not even Patrizia Gucci.” (Okay, we should point out that it is investigative journalism best practices to attempt to reach your subject for comment. However, we appreciate the spirit.)
Gaga also says she did a bit of photojournalism to prepare for the role, documenting things that she felt Patrizia Gucci might appreciate. “I have no evidence that Patrizia was a photographer, but I thought as an exercise, and finding her interests in life, that I would become a photographer, so I took my point-and-shoot camera everywhere I went,” she says. “I noticed that Patrizia loved beautiful things. If something wasn’t beautiful, I deleted it.”
Photography? Photo editing? A strong news sense? On-the-field hunts for evidence? She’s practically a one-woman news bureau.