There’s nothing better than strong women tapping into their power. We’ve seen it with Shonda Rhimes causally mentioning how she owns Thursday nights (and with her move to Netflix, she’ll soon own the remaining six). We’ve seen it with Serena Williams both owning her greatness on the court and embracing her black girl magic (soon to be black girl motherhood) outside of the court. We’ve seen it with the revolutionary release of Beyonce’s Lemonade–a love letter to black womanhood and a stunning memoir to forgiveness.
This does not include Taylor Swift’s “Look What You Made Me Do”—an incongruously peppy single from her upcoming new album, reputation, that aims for scalding pettiness but lands on blandly pitiful.
With a beat borrowed from Right Said Fred's “I’m Too Sexy” and laughably weak sang-spoken lyrics, there’s nothing shady, gasp-worthy or even memorable about Swifty’s new single that warranted the tediously planned fanfare of deleting her social media earlier this week and CGI-ed snakes and to declares that the Old Taylor “is dead.” This is the emo, faux-reinvention of a melodramatic teenager, not a 27-year-old woman.
For a songwriter who loves to name names, Swift is too scared to call out her enemies by other than vague references and even more feeble threats. “I got a list of names, and yours is in red, underlined. I check it once, then I check it twice,” she pants like some demented Santa Claus.
The “tilted stage” seems like a mosquito-esque jab at the production of Kayne West's Pablo tour. West outed her happily approving the perceived diss in last year's "Famous" in an earlier phone call. Taylor is still Lena-Dunham-levels of ignorant about the gravity of continuing to play innocent, helpless victim to the mean, scary black man.
In 2017, when Nazis are marching in the streets, their leaders have taken residence in the White House and everyone’s rights are under attack, the fact that Taylor chooses to sing about perceived slights to her kingdom and image in order to continue the nearly decade-old "feud" with the guy who made her A-list famous is as white privileged and tone-deaf as screaming into a sheet cake while white supremacists terrorize your city. #53Percent
And Tay-Tay and her single aren't doing a damn thing, the water-logged message is defiantly problematic.
“Look what you made me do!” is what The Joker cackles to a Batman, hogtied with electrified silly string, before detonating a series of bombs in Gotham City.
“Look what you made me do!” is what you shriek when your brother tackles you into a bookcase, making you break your mother's favorite vase.
“Look what you made me do!” is what the abuser yells to his battered wife in a Lifetime movie and real life.
It is not the feminist anthem of an empowered woman or even an indulgent clapback to the haters.
It’s not a message worthy of ABC’s new #TGIT promo. Pretty sure T-Swizzle has a chronic Affluenza, anyway. Hell, it’s barely cool enough to be the canned track to the cold open of an episode of a Kendall Jenner’s inevitable reality show.
The most offensive, oh-no-she-didn’t insult doesn’t come from the song itself, but rather from a still of the upcoming video—set to debut at this year’s MTV Video Music Awards this Sunday. It’s shockingly similar to Beyonce’s “Formation” Superbowl performance and brilliant Lemonade film. And she did it with such scathing blatancy that it can only be straight-up appropriation.
She saw a legendary artist she'll never outshine--Grammys be damned--make a brilliant piece of art that wasn't for her, and she pillaged pieces from it anyway.
T-Money doesn't have the range, and thankfully people are hip to her obviously Beckying. If Taylor Swift’s intention was to break the internet, she totally did just in all the wrong ways. Look what you made Twitter do!