Taylor Swift’s “The Man” Music Video

This new era of Taylor Swift, “Lover” has been filled with dreamy pastels and light ballads. This era has also been the first year that Taylor has decided to take a political stance. During the 2018 primary, she broke her political silence by endorsing Democrat Phil Bredesen for Senate and Jim Cooper for House of Representatives in her home state of Tennessee. 

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With Taylor's newfound outspoken voice, she addresses the issues that she has been facing her entire time in the spotlight in the song, “The Man”. It encapsulates Taylor’s frustrations that she has endured throughout her life as a woman. 

This iconic song addresses the criticisms that she has received. Some of these include her dating life, her inability to own her records and her fights for artists’ streaming rights. 

Taylor Swift on stage singing in a gold sequin dress Photo by Eva Rinaldi from Flickr

The song addresses her struggles, and the video that was released on Feb. 27th addresses the general privileges men hold over women including: being praised for caring for their children, their ability to be applauded for having one-night stands and their ability to be angry without facing punishments.  

The video shows the man as a leader in the office, receiving praise from countless people for his work. Then, he takes the train home and disrupts the other passengers' experiences by manspreading and smoking a cigar. 

This scene ends with the man getting off the subway to pee on a wall. This cement wall is covered in meaningful graffiti and signs. It has “KARMA” in black with the titles of all of Taylor’s seven albums, a sign that says, “MISSING: IF FOUND RETURN TO TAYLOR SWIFT” and a no scooter sign. This portion of the video is a nod to Scooter Braun and Scott Borcheta, who made a deal that made Braun the owners of all of Taylor’s masters. The man steps back to reveal his new piece to the wall, his pee stain that says “The Man”.

The next scene cuts to the man partying with women in yellow bathing suits on a yacht in a tropical region. This is a direct reference to the lyrics “I’d be just like Leo, in St. Tropez.” She is pointing out that men can party, lead wild lives and be praised for it. 

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After this scene, he is in a room checking himself out while a naked woman lays on the bed. He runs his hands through his hair and then walks out of the room, leaving her, and being rewarded by 19 hands giving him high fives. The video is pointing out the fact that men can have one-night stands and have this walk of praise, while women have to do a walk of shame. 

The subsequent scene shows the man with his child at a park. He is half paying attention to her, while the women around him are fawning over him being with his child. 

After this, the video cuts to the man partying at a strip club, ignoring the women around them, showing that they are like objects to them. 

This next scene was an ode to Serena Williams becoming angry at the 2019 French Open. It shows the man throwing tennis balls and his racket around the court, but he faces no backlash from it. 

The final shot features the man in his old age, settling down and marrying a much younger woman. 

While the video wraps up at the tennis court, the man walks offset to the Director seat, who happens to be Taylor Swift. She gives criticism to him saying, “Pretty good, could you try to be sexier, maybe more likable this time?” This being in reference to the sexist comments that women face frequently. 

camcorder on blue background Photo by Thomas William on Unsplash

It is then revealed at the end of the video that Taylor Swift was the man in the video and that this video was created entirely by her.