We need to talk about Taylor Swift’s new video.
Ultra-megastar, talented songwriter and feminist cat-lover Taylor Swift has released the video for her new track, Bad Blood.
In case you missed it, the four-minute video features the 25-year-old as a superhero alongside about a billion famous friends including Selena Gomez, Lena Dunham, Cara Delevigne, Hailee Steinfeld, Cindy Crawford, Elly Goulding, Jessica Alba, Ellen Pompeo and Zendaya (Yes, it makes you a bit insecure about the relatively modest size of your own girl gang.)
There are so many things to love about the Bad Blood clip: Physically strong, kickboxing women doing something other than talking about men. Women using typically ‘girly’ symbols of femininity like make-up compacts to kick arse. Tarantino-style explosions. Cat references. Cultural diversity (a bit, at least).
But there’s another view about the video circulating online a bit today: The widely held theory that the whole clip is a dig at Katy Perry, and the resulting question about whether the clip is a bit… well… mean.
Who’s actually in this video, you ask? Post continues after gallery:
Let me back up a little. If you haven’t heard about the Katy–Taylor rift (don’t worry, I hadn’t until yesterday, either), Taylor seemed to throw shade at 30-year-old Roar singer Katy in a Rolling Stone interview last year, when she described the inspiration for Bad Blood using this anecdote:
“She did something so horrible, I was like, ‘Oh, we’re just straight-up enemies.’ And it wasn’t even about a guy! It had to do with business. She basically tried to sabotage an entire arena tour. She tried to hire a bunch of people out from under me.”
Perry tweeted shortly thereafter, “Watch out for the Regina George in sheep’s clothing,” — a reference to a Mean Girls character which, according to gossip sites, confirmed the rift between the two.
Then the Bad Blood clip came out this week. And it shows Swift in hand-to-hand combat with an arch-enemy played by Selena Gomez, who is wearing a Katy Perry-style blunt bob. Who gets roundly defeated by Swift’s character in the video – while the lyrics say things about having scars from being stabbed in the back by an ex-friend.
Now, I don’t presume to know the first thing about Perry and Swift’s relationship.