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Why John Mayer Should Be Scared for Speak Now (Taylor’s Version)

If you didn’t already know, Taylor Swift released Red (Taylor’s Version) on November 12th, 2021– and it is safe to say that the world is still recovering from both her artistic genius and from the actions of Jake Gyllenhaal. With the album release came the new 10 minute version of “All Too Well” and an accompanying short film, giving new insight into what is rumored to be a representation of Swift’s 2010 relationship with Gyllenhaal. Fans have been agonizing over Gyllenhaal’s supposed gaslighting in the kitchen fight scene of the short film, his absence at Swift’s 21st birthday party, and of course, his infamous keeping of her scarf (give the scarf back, Jake). All this to say, the internet and Swift fans around the country are not holding back in their criticisms of Gyllenhaal, flooding his Instagram comment sections with song references, and wishing him the absolute worst. 

While everyone is probably wondering how Jake Gyllenhaal is feeling right now, I am wondering how John Mayer is feeling knowing that he is next. If Gyllenhaal is the toxic ex of Red, Mayer is the possibly even more toxic ex of Speak Now, being not so subtly, literally called out by name on the track “Dear John.” Not only did Mayer state in a 2012 interview with Rolling Stone that he was “humiliated” by the song, but also that he “never did anything to deserve that,” (fans and all the girls that he “ran dry” may not exactly agree with him). Worse yet, he called the hit “cheap songwriting.”  

If I were John Mayer right now, I would probably be planning a trip outside of the country, drafting a public apology, or attempting to write a response song in which he admits to his faults in the past relationship (titled “Dear Taylor,” possibly?) No matter what he does, though, the album drop is on its way and the critical response from listeners is inevitable. To Mayer’s team: get ready for a PR nightmare.

Anna Kronthal is a second-year student at UVA majoring in English and Politics. She likes to binge-watch Netflix, scroll through TikTok, dance, and play with her dog.
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