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I have been a dedicated Swiftie since her country days, and I never stopped supporting Taylor Swift– even during her worst times. That’s why when she wiped out all of her social media and started posting videos of snakes, I knew something was up. When she announced that her new song was releasing, I stayed up late at night to be the first to hear it. A smile was stuck to my face while I listened to the song, and when she said the words, “I’m sorry, the old Taylor can’t come to the phone right now. Why? Oh- cause she’s dead,” I gasped. Swift’s comeback single, Look What You Made Me Do, has been dropping jaws around the world.
The music video dropped at the MTV Video Music Awards, and within the first day of the video being out, records were smashed. This video featured snakes, diamonds, almost every version of the “old Taylor” that we can remember, and hints that she dropped about her upcoming album. Taylor is making her own reputation with this song and video.
The highly anticipated video destroyed records including most views on YouTube in 24 hours, with 43.2 million, according to Forbes.com. Estimated that every minute in that 24 hour period, the video was viewed 30,000 times, and quite a few have been from me. The number of views is still climbing, which may be due to the fact that the video was so interesting and fascinating to watch, no matter if you love Taylor or hate her. Each scene has a different underlying meaning or message, yet it was up to the world to decode them.
In the first scene of the video, Taylor is seen as a zombie in a graveyard, alluding to the fact of the old Taylor being “dead,” according to theguardian.com. My initial reaction to this was sadness, because I personally liked the old Taylor. The days of her curly hair and guitar were my favorite, and that girl being declared dead hit me where it hurt. If one were to look closely at the tomb stone behind her, they would see that the name printed on it says, “Nil Sjoberg.” “Nil Sjoberg” was the name of the co-writer on Calvin Harris and Rihanna’s hit song, This is What You Came For. “Nil Sjoberg” ended up being Taylor all along. When this information was leaked, Harris, Taylor’s ex, was not happy. He went on a Twitter rant and stated, “I know you’re off tour and you need someone new to try and bury…” It is assumed through this scene in the video, she is burying Nil Sjoberg. It was very interesting to me how she used this controversy to her advantage in her video, and how every move she made was based off a situation that she went through.
In the next scene, Swift is sitting in a bathtub filled to the top with diamonds and jewelry. This could be referencing how Taylor once said that people think she bathes in pearls. Also, a one dollar bill sits on the top. The one dollar bill is most likely a reference to the dollar she sued the Colorado DJ for groping her in 2013. Taylor suing him for a dollar shows how she does not really care about the money, but rather about the point she was making and the impact she has. Taylor suing the the DJ for only one dollar was truly inspiring to me.
Another major hint Taylor dropped in the music video was her sitting atop a throne surrounded by snakes. One of these snakes is serving her tea, likely meaning the tea that Kim Kardashian “spilled” when she released the phone call where Taylor allowed Kanye West to put her name in his song, but that is another whole story. Kim called Taylor out on being a snake, which started her entire “snake” reputation. Taylor’s Instagram flooded with snake emojis in the days that followed, and it was sad to watch. Her “good girl” reputation was ruined in one day, and it was hard as a Swiftie to witness the millions of hateful comments she received. Although, now it is great to watch her come back as strong as ever.
Finally, one last major hint, or almost fact at this point, was in one of the last scenes. The “new Taylor” stands on top of all of the “old Taylors” with a shirt that says rep. These “old Taylors” include the Shake it Off music video Taylor, the Grammy opening act Taylor, the Taylor who was interrupted at the Grammy’s by Kanye West, the You Belong With Me music video Taylor, and more. She kicks these Taylors and declares them dead. These old Taylors are the new Taylors past. I remember every single one of those old Taylors, and I remember idolizing them. As I watched them getting kicked in the head, my ten year-old self started to cry a little. Yet, the fifteen year-old me is ready to idolize the new, 2017 Taylor.
So, the old Taylor may be dead, but it’s going to be interesting what the “new” Taylor is going to make us do to love her.