Despite previous claims, there might be things that Taylor Swift does better than revenge.
The singer, 27, returned to the spotlight this week with a brand new single, “Look What You Made Me Do” — a dark, biting track off her upcoming album, Reputation – that seems to take hits at some of the star’s frenemies.
Though the accompanying music video won’t debut until Sunday’s MTV Video Music Awards, social media users are already dissecting the few frames visible in the teaser clip shared on Good Morning America on Friday. In one moment, Swift is clad in a black leotard and fishnet tights while leading a group of male dancers — including performer Todrick Hall — all wearing similar looks. The video appears to be set in an ornate ballroom.
The Beyhive was quick to point out that the scene had some similarities to Beyoncé’s Lemonade visual album. In the video for Lemonade track “Sorry,” Beyoncé and Serena Williams dance in the halls of a lavish Louisiana plantation while wearing black leotards. The diva also donned the look with an army of similarly dressed backup dancers during her performance of “Formation” at Super Bowl 50.
One fan tweeted side-by-side screen grabs of Swift’s “Look What You Made Me Do” teaser and video from Lemonade, captioning it “Lemonade and Minute Maid.” Added another: “Taylor Swift wanna be Beyoncé so bad.”
Many, however, came to Swift’s defense. Said one Twitter user: “I’m honestly over the whole hating on Taylor Swift thing, I don’t love Beyoncé, but I respect her & you don’t see me s——- on her.”
Added another tweeter, “I’m not one to come to the defense of Taylor Swift, but Beyoncé does not own the rights to wearing a black leotard.”
Overall, Swift’s new tune — which samples 1991 Right Said Fred hit “I’m Too Sexy” — is getting mixed reviews, namely for its notably darker tone (the singer declares at one point that the old Taylor is “dead”).
Others hearkened to Swift’s now infamous feud with Kim Kardashian West and Kanye West, and accused the singer of “playing the victim.”
The star may be once again turning the tables on her haters, however, by playing with the media’s perception of her as someone who always plays the victim. In her smash hit “Blank Space” off of her Grammy-winning album 1989, the star poked fun at the portrayal of her as a man-eater.
“[From] 2013 to 2013, they thought I was dating too much because I dated two people in a year and a half, but whatever — we’ll leave it there,” she said during an interview with NME in 2014. “‘Oh, a serial dater. She only writes songs to get emotional revenge on guys. She’s a man hater. Don’t let her near your boyfriend.’ It was just kind of excessive and, you know, at first it was hurtful and then I kind of found a little comedy in it.”
“This character is so interesting though,” she added at the time. “If you go and read these gossip sites and they describe how I am, [it’s] so opposite my actual life.”
Swift’s sixth album, Reputation, comes out on Nov. 10.