Pop singer Taylor Swift last night (August 27, 2017) debuted her “Look What You Made Me Do’ visual at MTV’s Video Music Awards. In the Joseph Kahn-directed video, Swift begins as a zombie risen from the dead, but quickly segues to much more glamorous looks and settings, including a bathtub fall of diamonds and a throne which is surrounded by snakes. Clearly a big-budget project, the video includes multiple sets, costumes as well as dancers and extras.
Throughout the visual, the message is that Taylor is powerful and wealthy yes, but it’s also clear that her position has come at a cost to her freedom and innocence. The point is driven home in the final scene showing multiple versions of Swift from over the years, ranging from the wide-eyed version of herself from her first album through her infamous 2009 MTV VMA acceptance speech cut short by Kanye West (who, according to TMZ, has left in the feud in his past).
Not taking herself too-too seriously, the various Swifts make fun of each other, including one accusing the other of always playing the victim.
While a preview of the visual was endlessly mocked for of its stylistic resemblance to Beyoncé’s “Formation” video, it mattered not to Swift fans, who set a record for views of the lyrics-only video. According to Variety, it was watched more than 19 million times on its first day, making it the most-viewed lyric video on YouTube in a single day.
Check out the video below.