Photo Credit: Jun Sato/WireImage
It seems like only yesterday that nobody had ever heard of Lady Gaga. Now, she's on the cover of Time magazine, wearing a metal bra that shoots fireworks, standing (via some digital magic) next to former U.S. president Bill Cinton. Now that's cultural influence.
Gaga's making her debut on Time's annual "100 Most Influential People in the World" list, which names a hundred leaders, thinkers, heroes and artists -- 31 of them women (don't get us started, we are approximately 50% of the population, after all!).
So which of pop culture's mighty ladies made the cut? Some are no surprise: Lady Gaga was a shoo-in, Oprah Winfrey made the list for a record 7th year in a row, and Sarah Palin makes her second consecutive appearance. Among the younger generation, Taylor Swift is an obvious choice -- but Time also singles out Glee's Lea Michele for inspiring girls to get involved in school music programs.
In the film arena, Kathryn Bigelow got a spot for making Oscar history, and Sandra Bullock receives praise for her impeccable career comeback. A few celebs make the "heroes" category by putting their fame toward good causes, including tennis champ Serena Williams.
However, we noticed that a few of America's most powerful women are absent from the Time list. Neither Hillary Clinton nor Michelle Obama made the issue (although Nancy Pelosi and Tea Party founder Jenny Beth Martin did). TV powerhouse Ellen DeGeneres, ubiquitous now, what with her Idol gig, is nowhere to be seen. Neither is Beyonce, who sang the most catchy song in recent history, "Single Ladies." And how about the ladies of Precious: multitasking Mo'Nique and beauty-standard-defying Gabourey Sidibe? Interestingly, all these women were candidates who were considered, but didn't ultimately make the cut. Other women who came this close include Amy Poehler, Chelsea Handler, Susan Boyle, Meryl Streep... and, believe it or not, Snooki.