lady gaga

Is Lady Gaga overrated? Photo: Getty Images

It's kind of hard to believe that a year ago, Lady Gaga didn't register very high on the pop culture radar. But like a fashionable freight train, her outrageous getups and outré style have been gaining momentum since last February when she made the rounds during Paris Fashion Week in a leather leotard.

And so it began...an endless evolution of pantless ensembles, hair pieces that defy gravity, masked appearances at press conferences, a metallic orb around her head while she visited Ellen's talk show. Not afraid to be mocked, there was - and is - no end to Gaga's fearlessness when it comes to fashion. Her not-so-subtle jab at perfectly manicured pop tarts has been delivered loud and clear. In a part by the star herself: "Fashion is everything ... I want the imagery to be so strong that fans will want to eat and taste and lick every part of us," she told MTV last year.

Ya don't say?

Of course her outward approach has not only drawn attention to her shapely gams but also her wildly addictive dance tracks. Last week Gaga (née Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta) returned to her old stomping grounds (the Upper West Side of Manhattan) to perform "Poker Face," "Bad Romance," other said songs for four sold-out nights at Radio City Music Hall.

The show was a delight for some. Dismal for others. Sure there was no splattered fake blood or boob-sparking, but the simulated orgy was too much for certain attendees - including the gaggle of clueless parents who had brought their young children to the show. A flurry of status updates from Facebookers ensued with reports of crass on-stage behavior and outrageous antics.

Not to get all Carrie Bradshaw about it, but it brings up an interesting point. At the zenith of her career, has Lady Gaga reached her saturation point? Could being over the top all the time get - dare we say it - boring? Does she deliver or is it just a matter of cheap thrills?

To get to the bottom of this, we polled a few of our industry co-horts who were in attendance. "Yes, she does [deliver]," says designer Phillip Lim. "It's a like a Fed-Ex next day priority delivery! You get the package!"

"The thing with the saturation point is that it is so subjective," he continued. "And what's even more dangerous that it is a double-edged sword. You can get cut on both sides. I like what she is doing , it's good ol' fashioned fun!"

Elle's creative director Joe Zee, for whom Gaga is also currently taking on the role of cover model for the January issue, was equally as enthusiastic. "Lady Gaga is a true performer in every sense of the word. Not only was her show creatively dynamic and visually compelling, her musicality and singing was so on par."

"She has inspired legions of girls and boys to be themselves no matter how outrageous," concurs accessory designer Rafe Totengco. "She writes her own songs, plays the piano and sings with a gritty yet melodious sound. Her costumes are legend and I think one of the key elements of her success. She's like a cross between Leigh Bowery and Daryl Hannah in 'Bladerunner'!"

Personally I'm also a fan. There is no doubt that Gaga is a creative tour de force. She's a performance artist and whether you like it or not, whenever she steps out, people are always curious about what she is wearing. That's the whole part of being an artist, right? Sorry but J.Lo in a jumpsuit isn't nearly as alluring.

Ok, ok, so clearly Gaga's sartorial and musical efforts aren't lost on the fashion flock, but what do you think? Is it too much or just right for the times?

Let us know then check out some other celebrity outfits that make us go "hmm..."