First, the good news: Madonna's "Vogue" is still the definitive '90s dance classic, and I don't care about your counterarguments even if you're defending "Groove is in the Heart," "No Scrubs," "This is How We Do It," "Baby Got Back," or whatever. It's all about "Vogue." No song has more attitude, authority, winking self-absorption, and sheer dancefloor chutzpah. No song is gayer either, which helps.
Anyway, the bad news: Katy Perry used a snippet of "Vogue" on her newest tour. Ugggggghhhhhh. Just because you do most of your dancing with your hands doesn't mean you are entitled to vogue. Check out the small Madonna tribute here.
Of Madonna's huge hits, "Vogue" is probably the one that her most diehard fans tend to love most. It is the most Madonna of Madonna songs. It is the most "Love yourself as you worship me." As a fellow worshipper of the Lourdes, I'm sensitive about how this song is handled by lesser gods. Here's Madonna's most recent tour version of "Vogue" from her verrrrry heavy-handed "MDNA" tour. (Fabulous costumes though.)
And now, let's check out the plebeians scratching at her throne.
Here's Rihanna covering "Vogue" at a Fashion Rocks gala event. She went full showgirl for the routine and even co-opted some of the original "Vogue" video choreography, which feels a little bit like that time Heidi Klum exploited Hindus by dressing as a "scary Indian goddess" for Halloween. You're treading on sacred ground, Fenty. But of all the covers on this list, I think Rihanna achieved the most ferocity. I'm not bothered by her lip-syncing either, since this is always the song Madonna is most likely to lip-sync on tour.
Kylie Minogue's turn. First of all: Is it strange that all Australian female celebrities look alike? Seriously, Kylie is a hybrid of Naomi Watts, Nicole Kidman, Jacki Weaver, and even -- at times -- her childhood idol Olivia Newton-John. This also means she looks effing amazing and everyone should respect her bubbly majesty. Anyway. Kylie loves Madonna and is generally regarded as Madonna's top-tier contemporary in every non-U.S. nation. Here she combines "Vogue" with her old romp "Burning Up" (not a cover of the same-named Madge song), and I'd call the tribute just fun and cheeky enough. The problem is that unlike Madonna, Kylie is just -- and I mean this as a compliment to Madonna -- a bit more approachable. She enjoys some burlesque styling, but Kylie can't quite do the untouchable empress act. She is more princess than priestess, you see. I should write fables.
Here is a casual cover by the unspeakably cool Beth Ditto. Just enjoying herself, living, loving, doing it all. A perfect karaoke version. Could've used a few more headmistress-ly scowls though. That's what makes "Vogue" sing.
Britney Spears even added a "Vogue" dance break to her "...Baby One More Time" tour. Oh, Britney. Stick to squawking "Papa Don't Preach" on the "Crossroads" soundtrack. Leave the gay-ass jiving to Madonna and her coterie of mythological homosexuals.
And I couldn't finish this discussion without bringing up Sue Sylevester, a.k.a. Jane "I Am 7'4 and Funnier Than You" Lynch, and her "Glee" cover of "Vogue." I appreciated the effort and still do. The rage. The Chris Colfer pouts in the video. But I don't get it. There's not enough of a parody here to make it a success. It's cool to see Jane get to do glamor, since she is in fact a statuesque and commanding presence, but this sort of feels like that MTV show "Becoming" where fans got to recreate their favorite artists' music videos, and it always looked 70% cheaper. Jane looks fab, though.
And the winner of this heat is... Rihanna. The decadence alone was a fine (if meager) gift to the original voguess.
Now, your turn: Which "Vogue" cover is tops?
1997 | Crime | RSummary: Quentin Tarantino adaptats an Elmore Leonard novel into this story of a few increasingly desperate people scraping to get by. It has deep soul, a wicked sense of humor, and Samuel L. Jackson, Robert De Niro, Pam Grier, and Robert Forster.Director: Quentin Tarantino
Cast: Pam Grier, Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Forster
2013 | Drama | RSummary: Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill have boundless energy in the story of a real-life commodities crook who earned millions through scummy small-time stock trades.Director: Martin Scorsese
Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill, Margot Robbie
2013 | Comedy | NRSummary: Insanely funny comedy show created by Amy Schumer, who stars in brilliantly funny sketches about sex, city living, dating, and friendship.Director: Daniel Powell, Amy Schumer (creators)
Cast: Amy Schumer, Kevin Kane, Mike Houston
2007 | Comedy | PGSummary: Newlyweds Nick (Ice Cube) and Suzanne (Long) decide to move to the suburbs to provide a better life for their two kids. But their idea of a dream home is disturbed by a contractor (McGinley) with a bizarre approach to business.Director: Steve Carr
Cast: John C. McGinley, Ice Cube, Nia Long, Aleisha Allen
1996 | Crime | RSummary: Jerry, a small-town Minnesota car salesman is bursting at the seams with debt... but he's got a plan. He's going to hire two thugs to kidnap his wife in a scheme to collect a hefty ransom from his wealthy father-in-law. It's going to be a snap and nobody's going to get hurt... until people start ...Director: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
Cast: William H. Macy, Frances McDormand, Steve Buscemi, Peter Stormare
2013 | Thriller | RSummary: Based on the true story of Daniel Lugo (Mark Wahlberg) a Miami bodybuilder who wants to live the American dream. He would like to have the money that other people have. So he enlists the help of fellow bodybuilder Adrian Doorbal (Anthony Mackie) and ex-convict, Christian bodybuilder Paul Doyle (D...Director: Michael Bay
Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson, Anthony Mackie, Tony Shalhoub
2008 | Science Fiction | PGSummary: Animated series continues the story of Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker as they battle the Emperor Palpatine, Count Dooku and General Grievous, but also takes time to explore other smaller characters in the Star Wars universe.Director: George Lucas (creator)
Cast: Tom Kane, Dee Bradley Baker, Matt Lanter
1993 | Sports | PGSummary: Emotionally powerful sports classic featuring Sean Astin as a skinny high school kid with big football dreams and the determination to make his way towards his dream team at Notre Dame.Director: David Anspaugh
Cast: Sean Astin, Jon Favreau, Ned Beatty
1995 | Mystery | NRSummary: Denzel Washington plays an out of work WWII vet who takes the wrong job and is soon neck-deep in a mess of politics, murder, and jazz in '40s Los Angeles.Director: Carl Franklin
Cast: Denzel Washington, Tom Sizemore, Jennifer Beals
Let Streaming Genie help you.