Best Ad of the Year? It's Lady Gaga.

Nothing has been as sticky. No other advert, print or video or Web, no tweet or blog, billboard or word of mouth, has so thoroughly knitted itself into my merchandise-buying neurons. I'm fully bought-in, invested. Ebola isn't as viral. My wallet is open and its tongue is hanging out.

My vote for Advertisement of the Year 2009 is Lady Gaga's video "Bad Romance," a five-minute self-exploitation film that sells booze, high-end audio gear and stiletto heels as hard as it rocks. Canny and cagey and completely engaged in the business of business, brand Gaga is the first white artist I can think of who has embraced aspirational, label materialism with the kind of gusto shown by hip-hop artists such as Kanye West and Jay Z.