Some entertainers exist for years without going on the polarising spectrum – Taylor Swift has never managed to be that artist.
Once America’s country sweetheart, we loved hearing her catchy tunes about the boy next door, until some started to begrudge her for having a love life, no matter who the boy was.
Another guy, again? the critics said, all the while the guys themselves appeared to get off scot-free.
But she was fulfiling her ‘nice girl’ persona, doing what she thought we wanted her to do, she said. That was fine until it wasn’t.
Is anyone that nice, really?
She was suddenly too nice, an over-sharer and always ended up saying ‘poor me,’ until some were sick of it – no matter what she said, did or who she dated.
Related: Explainer: Here’s why the Taylor Swift / Scooter Braun feud has taken off again
Oh, and did you know ‘girl squads’ are toxic and it’s not cool to stay quiet about your political views if you’re in the public eye?
Her success is frequently treated with suspicion; the way she always acts surprised to win awards is “fake and annoying,” and her unapologetic demeanour means she must be told her place. Whereas the Justin Biebers of the world can always be forgiven.
For you see, Taylor Swift was never going to win.
When she released Reputation, she herself agreed her own had “never been worse.” A very public argument with the Kardashians saw the smear campaign reach new heights; snake emojis were no longer simply referring to the reptile. And so she retreated inwards; we saw less of her publically, she did fewer interviews.
She went away for a year and emerged a new kind of Taylor Swift.
And it’s all this she addresses in the new trailer for her upcoming Netflix documentary. The film is expected to dive deeper into Swift’s seemingly transformative absence from the spotlight which resulted from her self-exploration.
“I became the person everyone wanted me to be,” Swift reflects in the trailer. “Throughout my whole career, label executives would say, ‘A nice girl doesn’t force their opinion on people. A nice girl smiles and waves and says thank you’.'”
“[So], no one physically saw me for a year… and that was what I thought they wanted.”
The documentary comes from Emmy-winning director Lana Wilson and is expected to screen at the Sundance Film Festival before its premiere on Netflix on January 31st.
You can watch the trailer below:
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