So what do you do if you’re Taylor Swift? After the four-year hiatus Taylor gave herself following her breakup with Tom Hiddleston, the singer released a new single titled “All Too Well” along with a seven-minute “short film” based on the track — in addition to a teaser video. What, we ask you, is ironic here? Read on.
At first glance, “All Too Well” might not appear to be too ironic. Swift gives us her take on male behavior, and on the classic tale of a doomed love affair between a mysterious lady and her companion. But you’ll soon notice that those tropes give way to a sense of something genuinely unsettling.
“The thing about women’s roles is we’re allowed to do what men can only dream of,” Swift sings. “And we get a little jealous, ’cause it’s tough sometimes.”
In the video, we see a woman discovering for the first time that her husband is cheating on her. They might have been together before the Venn diagram of how a person possibly could have cheated on a person existed, but watch as we realize there are a lot of women on this planet who would probably recognize that statement with a groan.
Swift’s need to cast her fandom in unusual light is also rendered clear. Even the highlight of the brief “short film” is a woman called “All” — the first girl ever to be called that! “She never got over…a woman,” a narrator says. “She never understood, what was fair, and fair was not right.”
There’s an even more poignant turn in the song when we hear a snippet of old wedding announcements as evidence that someone went to a relationship before meeting a partner.
“First Lady Genevieve Marie Blackstock and Fred Blackstock live in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida with their three children from previous marriages.” pic.twitter.com/CkDdXBZMAH — Stuart Smith (@stuartmsmith) January 22, 2018
“Some would say that this marriage … will end in heartbreak, but they promised each other forever,” the song states.
“All Too Well” is one of two songs from Swift’s repackaged “Reputation” album that will be available on Friday, the day following the Grammy Awards, where she’s nominated for five awards.
Previously, Swift’s awards shows have all been a snooze. Five years ago, she made headlines for biting her thumb on “Adele Dazeem” night, and last year she had a non-eventful performance of her newest single “Look What You Made Me Do.” If only Tay Tay had chosen to end the awards show festivity with something a little more meaningful…