Lady Gaga’s “Shallow” Grammys Performance Births Several Memes

A meme is born.

61st Annual Grammy Awards - Arrivals
David Crotty/Patrick McMullan/Getty Images

On Sunday, A Star Is Born continued its slow march to dominating the Oscars (if Sean Penn has anything to say about it) by taking home two of its four nominated awards at the 2019 Grammys for breakout song “Shallow.” Though Bradley Cooper skipped the ceremony, Lady Gaga was in attendance and not only tearfully accepted their trophy for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance—Best Song Written for Visual Media was awarded to Gaga and her “Shallow” cowriters offscreen, before the telecast began—but also took the stage during the show to perform “Shallow” live.

Accompanied by Mark Ronson, one of the song’s cowriters, Gaga wore a bejeweled bodysuit with a plunging V-neck to belt out an electric guitar-heavy version of “Shallow” that Jackson Maine would approve of. At the end of the powerful performance, as the crowd in Los Angeles’s Staples Center went wild, Gaga froze where she was, bent over and holding her sparkly mic stand off-kilter. Eventually, Gaga peeked up through her platinum hair to find a camera directly in her face. She stared right back into the camera, even as she was still catching her breath and shaking a bit from the effort of holding her topsy-turvy pose, and thus a meme was born.

Immediately, as is bound to happen when millions of people around the world are all watching the same event at the same time, countless Twitter users screengrabbed the moment and added captions, in varying degrees of hilarity and in two general schools of thought. Some described things that stare unblinkingly, unnervingly back at you, like the delicious leftovers taking forever to reheat in the microwave, while others compared Gaga’s blank stare to their own reactions to disturbing moments, like realizing it’s Monday morning yet again or receiving a passive-aggressive email from a colleague.

See some of the best memes from that unforgettable finale to Lady Gaga’s performance, below.

Gaga, who also took home the trophy for Best Pop Solo Performance for her song “Joanne (Where Do You Think You’re Goin’?),” heralded A Star Is Born‘s brutally honest portrayal of mental health in her acceptance speech for her and Cooper’s “Shallow” award. “If I don’t get another chance to say this, I just want to say I’m so proud to be a part of a movie that addresses mental health issues. They’re so important. A lot of artists deal with that. And we gotta take care of each other,” she said. “So if you see somebody that’s hurting, don’t look away. And if you’re hurting, even though it might be hard, try to find that bravery within yourself to dive deep and go tell somebody and take them up in your head with you.”

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