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When exactly did Madonna become a superstar?


androiduser
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I joined the Madonna fandom sometime in 1990 when she was already at her highest peak, and my knowledge of everything before that is based on articles, anecdotes and personal impressions. So I am never sure about the moment when Madonna became an absolute superstar? I think with the True Blue era she solidified herself as the number one female pop star. My impression is that the first album was successful but definitely not big enough to turn Madonna into an instant superstar, and she became really huge with Like a Virgin.... but still not established enough to be the absolute number one? I always see True Blue as a huge turning point, and then the Who's That Girl Tour was the absolute indisputable proof of Madonna's superstardom.

Can any of the older fans put things into perspective (while still keeping it real, without any fan bias)?

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20 minutes ago, me1981 said:

1985 - no doubt it was that year that made her a mega star. Everything before that was fame and popularity and stuff but 1985 put her in the upper echelon. 

Everything after that made her untouchable

 

I agree. 1985 is when she really landed and then like a prayer in 89 followed by blond ambition in 1990 took her to a higher place of superstardom only previously reached by Michael Jackson.

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14 minutes ago, Jet said:

I agree. 1985 is when she really landed and then like a prayer in 89 followed by blond ambition in 1990 took her to a higher place of superstardom only previously reached by Michael Jackson.

Yeah 85 was when the music took off, but also the myth and the legend really started being built. LAV both album and single hit #1, Material Girl #2, CFY another #1 Angel and Dress You Up in the top 5 and ITG never released but might as well have been another #1. The huge success of Desperately Seeking Susan, dating and marrying Sean Penn, the playboy/penthouse scandal, the Virgin Tour and Live AID. It was non stop all year. 

This was the year every newspaper, tv show and magazine was talking about M non stop and the paps started stalking her and even flew over her wedding. The obssession had begun. 

True Blue hitting big just cemented it and LAP gave her the critical approval that had been begrudging before that. 1989 was when music critics started taking her seriously. Yeah 1990 was another massive year, another 1985 and it too just shot her into the strasophere for sure. 

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5 hours ago, androiduser said:

So I am never sure about the moment when Madonna became an absolute superstar? 

I am a fan since 1989 but I knew her since the release of "Burning Up". In my humble opinion Madonna became a superstar in 1984 -1985 during the "Like A Virgin" era (MTV, singles, movies...).  1990 is the peak of her career but she was everywhere  (on the news, radio, TV) during 1984-1987. 

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I’ve been a fan since 1987 and she was already a superstar even then - I live in the U.K. and i remember her having 8 singles in the charts in 1985 which I think at the time was a record plus live aid and the whole penthouse scandal so I would say 1985 too but I wasn’t a fan nor even a fan of music then  - it was family who introduced me to music - the true blue era is my favourite in terms of music , videos , artwork and of course the magnificent wtg tour and I’m going to get shot down for this but I just love the who’s that girl movie too - it was my first cinema experience and I remember being given a badge and press pack which sadly I don’t have any more . I agree with other comments that the blond ambition tour elevated her to icon status and put her in the same league as my 2 other favourite icons MJ and Prince- an era that she will never sadly replicate again ?

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For me it was seeing her statue up alongside David Bowie, Michael Jackson, and Tina Turner at Rock Circus in Piccadilly Circus in  London around 1986

http://www.artandarchitecture.org.uk/images/full/410d114aec02b1807c88363931845b86d6e2d2de.html?ixsid=yc9PyEljmek'

 

And then the crowds at Heathrow when she landed for Who's That Girl Tour

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1 hour ago, cake said:

imo M reached superstar status in 1990. She'd had years of incredible success, hits, looks, videos.. by 1990 it was clear that she was more than a pop star and she wasn't going anywhere

in 1990 she reached the highest of her peaks, but she already had her highest selling studio album and her first major stadium tour behind her, so I think in 1990 she reached a whole another level of fame, but was already a superstar since True Blue

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It's Like A Virgin era that made her become a Superstar, then True Blue made her beyond superstar that you cannot compare her to Like A Virgin era. But, Like A Prayer era 1989 to 1991 is the era that made her an untouchable megastar where all of success are hers. That's only my observation.

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In short: 

Like A Virgin era -> Superstar

True Blue era / Who's That Girl era -> The queen of pop

Like A Prayer era / Blond Ambition Tour era / Immaculate Collection era -> A legend in music (similar to Elvis, The Beatles, etc).

But after the Sex Book and Erotica, the haters (and many fans) almost destroyed her career. Ray of Light was the second coming. This is my opinion. 

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