There was a point when Taylor Swift was becoming insufferable. It was around 2009, when her second album, Fearless, sold six million copies and won Album of the Year at the Grammys.
Swift's music had been a guilty pleasure for me ever since I bonded with my much-younger cousin by listening to her first crossover single, "Teardrops on My Guitar," each of us taking one earbud and singing along. I will never be able to tolerate Justin Bieber but Swift's heartfelt take on unrequited love was a reminder of when every crush felt like life or death (do not miss that).
The new music video also introduces us to Taylor Swift: Hipster, who wears animal pajamas and thick-rimmed glasses.
On Fearless that wistful teenage romantic began to grate. Singles like "Love Story" and "White Horse" showed that Taylor had a bit of a fairy princess complex, singing about boys who should sweep her off her feet, marry her and live happily ever after.
But for all her dreamy victimhood, Swift was only too quick to take down the popular girls who didn't deserve their adoration ("You Belong With Me") and serve up the ones who did more than dream and cry in bed ("And Abigail gave everything she had to a boy/Who changed his mind and we both cried") as cautionary tales. It's enough to make any grown woman want to barf, just a little bit.
But with "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together," the first single of her fourth album, Taylor Swift is showing that she's all grown up and done thinking about relationships as fairy tales (I guess dating John Mayer will do that to you.)
The single is her poppiest yet, breaking records as the fastest-selling digital single ever for a woman. It's rocketed to No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100, making it Swift's first No. 1 single ever.
It's also self-aware and not afraid to be snarky, especially about an ex who listens to "some indie record that's much cooler than mine." No longer a princess or a victim, this is a girl who is singing about relationships as I know them — frustrating, messy, and yeah, exhausting.
Welcome to adulthood, Taylor. This is why the gods invented riesling.
The just-released music video also introduces us to Taylor Swift: Hipster, who wears animal pajamas and thick-rimmed glasses, crochets fake birds to put in a real tree and has kick-ass cable-knit walls and a band made up of furries who play instruments like square banjoes and keytars.
This is like Hipster Music Videos 101, minus the PBR. With flouncy retro dresses, Swift's sartorial style is still good girl gone good, but at least she's finally out of those stuffy corsets.