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Madonna Shrewdly Plays the Victim Card

Sixty-something superstar's complaint over ageism ignores an ugly truth

You can’t craft a career like Madonna’s without playing the media … and us.

The Material Girl never had the best voice or the most seductive hooks. She boasted a little of everything – an attractive figure, a radio-friendly sound and lyrics that nailed the zeitgeist.

Her greatest talent? Knowing how to grab people by the scruff of their necks. By that measure, she had few peers.

Time hasn’t dulled that instinct.

The superstar, globally adored and with all the resources western society can offer, is now a professional victim at the tender age of 64. She’s following in the footsteps of Meghan Markle, who proved you can claim victimhood status no matter your wealth, beauty or privilege.

Madonna introduced future Grammy winners Sam Smith and Kim Petras on Sunday’s Grammy telecast. Viewers may have been shocked by what they saw, and it had nothing to do with the Satanic showcase the pop duo performed.

Madonna looked puffy and distorted, her face impossibly smooth. it didn’t take a plastic surgeon to note the singer has had some work done. Memories of the late Joan Rivers’ face floated to mind, as did fellow pop superstar Michael Jackson.

So Twitter did what Twitter always does … weigh in on the subject with less than kind results.

It’s only natural. Her fans knew her best during her provocative youth, a time when she flashed her curves and cleavage on MTV and elsewhere. She literally penned a book entitled, “Sex” and worked out feverishly to stay youthful and lean.

And it worked.

Her sexuality became integral to her brand, her songcraft. That’s hard to leave behind as the calendar pages pass.

So Madonna, like many stars before her, medically delayed the inevitable.

Now, as the public reacts to her decision, she’s going on the offensive. She refused to age gracefully, and now her detractors must be punished.

The media quickly took up her cause du jour. Reporters echoed her cries of “ageism,” even though many chuckled as comedians taunted President Donald Trump for his skin color and coif.

The New York Times contorted itself into a pretzel to say Madonna’s visage was the singer’s latest blasts of performance art, empowering to the end.

…whatever her intentions, the superstar has gotten us talking about how good looks are subjective and how ageism is pervasive. In the end, whether she meant to make a statement or just to look younger, better, “refreshed,” almost doesn’t matter. If beauty is a construct, Madonna’s the one who put its scaffolding on display.

Vogue, the magazine, not the name of Madonna’s perky smash, similarly rallied to her side.

Instead of focusing on her rousing speech, however, which was all to do with radical self-acceptance and celebrating those who don’t conform, news outlets and the Twitterverse alike decided to hone in on her “unrecognizable” appearance amidst thinly veiled accusations of extreme plastic surgery. And, true to form, Madonna is having none of it.

Broadcast TV reports followed suit.

Madonna's 'unrecognizable' appearance sparks conversation on ageism l GMA


Liberal tastemakers couldn’t turn on the pop princess, at least not yet. She’s been an “ally” for all the correct causes, from abortion to LGBTQ+ Nation. Scribes will twist and turn, as needed, to have her back.

Here’s why they’re wrong.

Madonna could have been brave by embracing her wrinkles and defying beauty norms.

“Hey world, this is 64, and I’m loving every second of it.”

That would be empowering, a former sex symbol staring down Father Time. Yasss queen! Instead, she clung to her youth with all her might. What worked for a while is now backfiring. Sadly.

She’s just mad we noticed.


Buried under the star’s new look is a terrible truth. Western culture routinely allows men to wrinkle up without collective tsk-tsking. Aging superstars like Sylvester Stallone, Liam Neeson and Clint Eastwood grow older, and craggier, while the cruel insults are kept mostly in check.

Female stars, from actresses to rock goddesses, attract more attention for the sin of getting old.

Madonna could have defied that imbalance, daring us to mock a star for standing up to the reality we all face.

How subversive! Instead, she chose the surgical route, one open to only the richest among us.

Madonna addressed her “changes” on social media,

“I am happy to do the trailblazing so that all the women behind me can have an easier time in the years to come.”

Trailblazers don’t assume the fetal position and lash out at detractors. They keep moving forward, oblivious to the taunts headed their way.

And does she really think, or even want, future Madonnas to demolish their faces to placate our youth-obsessed culture?

If so, that’s the most alarming part of Madonna’s new pose.


  1. What’s not surprising is that most if not all the comments embrace exactly what Madonna is saying, you’re all agists. Madonna lives in the future, where you can customize your look, your gender, you’re clothes, your mind…it’s YOUR life…don’t let the peanuts in the gallery tell you what you’re power is. She has the last laugh at those who throw so many stones, yet we’ve yet to see your ugly skeletons?

    1. I find her complaints about ageism laughable. Even aside from the bad surgery, I find her attention-seeking antics off putting. Things like showing her her naked behind at age 63 on the Fallon show in 2021 deprive her of credibility in making the argument against ageism. Antics like that are not a good look at any age, but it is sad to see an intelligent, multi-talented entertainer make such a spectacle of herself. It reeks of desperation.

    1. I went to the clip. But we don’t know if she had any surgeries or not. Idk bout E1 else but I don’t remember her, from the 80s. So what are we comparing?

      Idk what Madonna saw when she looked in the mirror. Apparently it wasn’t what we saw when we looked at her. Now there’s NOTHING about her that looks like the Madonna we knew. She even got rid of her eyebrows. Hope she’s happy with her new face.

  2. The fact that over 112.000 users gave this disgusting hasbeen likes is truly terrifying. Madonna must have a bot farm to protect her disgusting plastic surgery.

  3. Just a side note that Stallone has definitly had work done as well…. Not all celeb men try the “aging gracefully” route… And our politicians seems to be the worst offenders of plasticizing their faces, proving all the more the grift called “public service”.

  4. Someone posted a recent photo of Susanna Hoffs, who is the same age and seems to be more comfortable aging, side by side. Kind of shocking.

  5. Seems to me that tacitly declaring “being old” to be unattractive by undergoing surgery in an attempt to maintain a youthful appearance would better fit the definition of “ageism” than the people saying she should have just aged gracefully.

    But that’s just me.

  6. Here’s a free life lesson: when the only things you have to work with are your boobs and booty, Honey that ain’t gonna last. Get some life skills.

  7. I’m not at all sure women take more heat for gathering wrinkles than they do for extreme measures to “hide the evidence” they’re getting older. Charlotte Rampling, Helen Mirren, Annie Lennox and others show that a woman can age beautifully, if they’ll allow themselves to do so.

  8. Yes, her cultural impact has been profound. She has taught women and girls across the world that it’s cool to be a ho.

  9. A line from the movie The Edge comes to mind: “Never feel sorry for a man who owns a plane.”

    If you have an $850 million net worth and have enjoyed the privilege of decades of superstardom and media adulation, you don’t get to call yourself a victim, sorry.

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