The Crimson White

Taylor Swift's new album, video strays from previous fan expectations

Noah Cannon

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Perhaps the most integral piece of Swift’s dynasty is consistency. Her knack for quality control has long set her apart from other top recording artists. Every song, every video, every promotional appearance by Swift plays right into the established formula for success she’s implemented for almost a decade now. Even her album release cycle – a new record in the third week of October every two years – hasn’t changed since her eponymous debut.

It’s this consistency that makes Swift’s new single “Blank Space” and its accompanying music video so out of the ordinary for die-hard “Swifties.” The video, inadvertently leaked by Yahoo earlier this week, is gorgeously shot in widescreen by Joseph Kahn and features the impossibly good-looking Sean O’Pry as Swift’s co-star.

In what is surely her most sarcastic song to date, Swift spins a jaded, sardonic tale of the fictitious Taylor crafted by tabloids. The accompanying visual for “Blank Space” features Swift as a sort of murderous Jay Gatsby in a merry-go-round of ill-fated boyfriends and smashed car windows. The end result is closer to a horror movie than a love song, with Swift emerging triumphant as the credits roll.

Swift’s refusal to be trampled by her own public image in “Blank Space” results in a glorious “screw you” song for the ages. She takes a joke she has so often been the butt of and instead chooses to laugh last and loudest. “Blank Space” is about the most irritating ex-lover she’s dealt with so far: the media.

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Taylor Swift's new album, video strays from previous fan expectations