Radio Ga Ga

Metropolis by Fritz Lang is a cultural landmark. Not only did it touch on social and political problems, but it influenced the entire sci-fi movie genre. Its cultural influence also extendes to the music industry, as noted by Janelle Monae. But before Monae, Queen first sampled pieces of Metropolis in their music video Radio Ga Ga.


Radio Ga Ga

The music video is a tribute to Metropolis, filled with montages of the film as well as the band Queen, flying through the city. The video tells a story of a family during the WW II era listening to the radio, and ends with the masses bowing down while the city is in total chaos.

The Meaning

 Written by Roger Taylor, the song was a commentary of how the changes in technology affect our culture. The lyrics, through wars of worlds/invaded by mars, gives an example of how the radio used to be our source for comedy, drama and science fiction stories. But with the advent of the TV, the popularity and social influence was diminished. The title Radio Ga Ga talks about the dilution of the radio and how the monopoly of the air waves resulted in commercialized, repetitive songs. The song emphasized that we should not forget the past (the radio), but be cautious about the future (television) of technology and how it can effect us all.

Metropolis X Radio Ga Ga

The video, set to a futuristic tone touches on several ideas. First it starts off as a Utopian society in the post-industrial future. Then, we are shown a new form of control/domination. In Metropolis, it was the robot Maria who controlled the working class. In Radio Ga Ga, it was image and entertainment, particularly the new MTV and television age. The conclusion for both is the same, chaos and destruction is the inevitable end.


~ by digitalamericathebeautiful on January 31, 2012.

One Response to “Radio Ga Ga”

  1. Excellent.

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