When I discovered the “Screaming, Crying” TikTok trend, inspired by the one and only Taylor Swift, I couldn’t help but think about how she’s completely dominating TikTok right now. During this already exciting season for Swifties, we’ve seen her music spark a number of viral moments, like the “Wildest Dreams” TikTok trend (Taylor’s version, duh) and the “All Too Well/Champagne Problems” trend (which may or may not be rooted in misogyny, but I rest my case). Now, the “Screaming, Crying” trend makes use of two highly important pop culture references: 1) a Gen Z phrase meant to communicate general enthusiasm and hysteria, and 2) one of Taylor’s most iconic songs, “Blank Space.”
Check out this trending audio and I promise you’ll understand the “Screaming, Crying” TikTok trend right away. The viral soundbite features a sound from “Blank Space” where Taylor sings “screaming, crying” — however, instead of continuing to the next lyric, “perfect storms,” the clip simply ends. The comedic timing of this is 10/10, and in true Gen Z fashion, TikTokers are adapting the sound to show us moments when they, too, are “screaming, crying.”
For those who are unfamiliar with classic Gen Z slang, screaming and crying may seem over-the-top. However, this trend is not meant to be performed dramatically, a la “The Killer Is Escaping.” Instead, the goal is to appear sarcastic and deadpan — because naturally, when Gen Z says “screaming, crying,” they don’t actually mean that. Similar to the abrupt nature of the audio itself, the trend is all about presenting a relatable scenario when you’re frustrated, annoyed, or otherwise can’t deal anymore — then, reacting sarcastically and playing “screaming, crying” in the background.
TikTokers are using the trend to share what’s got them feeling some type of way — for better or for worse. For example, @austin.tayl0r says, “When I have to do the work for classes that I’m paying tens of thousands of dollars for.” TikToker @mikaelaistired says, “When you remember that it is, in fact, still only Monday.” In another version, Ashiah says, “Me showing up to the job I did, in fact, agree to show up for” and @_bela_amor’s version says, “Every time my period is late.” Screaming, crying indeed.
If you’re a Swiftie, you’ll appreciate this version from @niamhadkins that says “When the heartbreak album of the century is about to drop and you’re in a stable relationship,” or this one from @gingergrinch says “When ur trying to get in the 10 min all too well headspace but the worst thing your golden retriever of a boyfriend has ever done is use your olaplex shampoo w/o asking.”
Ever since #SwiftTok broke the internet earlier this year, I’m convinced Taylor is taking over our favorite app one video at a time. The “Screaming, Crying” TikTok trend is a great one to try if you’re short on time, but still want to tap into a viral moment and increase your chance for views — because let’s be real, all eyes are on TSwift content right now. As we approach the “All Too Well” short film release on November 12th, I expect that momentum will only continue. And until then, I’ll be screaming, crying (you get the point) in anticipation.