Everything You Missed In Taylor Swift’s ‘The Man’ Video


Taylor Swift has dropped the music video for her latest single, “The Man.” Both the song and video take on double standards between men and women. As with her past videos, this one is full of Easter eggs and
other hidden meanings. Here’s a look at everything you missed. Every video from Swift’s “Lover” era has started with her by a window, and “The Man” is no different. Except now we have Tyler Swift. The office he’s in
looks similar to the one from Swift’s “Bad Blood” music video. Instead of a fight scene between women, this time we get a recreation of “The Wolf of Wall Street.” Swift’s alpha-male persona, Tyler, mimics Leonardo DiCaprio’s Jordan Belfort. Tyler takes the scene a step further by fist-bumping and acknowledging only the men in the room. The Leo reference is
no coincidence either, but more on him later. Next, we see Tyler
manspreading on a subway train. Behind him are some fake advertisements parodying the overtly
violent and sexual ways in which the media portrays men. The one seemingly advertising for liquor reads, “Capitalize on the feeling.” This is likely a reference to how Swift’s been criticized
and called “calculated” for writing about her relationships. The word greedy is
written on the train wall. Swift’s been called greedy in the past for certain business decisions she’s made, like adopting a fan-verified
ticket-sales system for her “Reputation” stadium tour and pulling her music catalog
from streaming services like Spotify and Apple Music over artist royalty disputes. But there’s a whole other take we can read from this poster and the word greedy. The title “Bo$$ Scotch”
seems to be a play on words referring to her old record-label
boss Scott Borchetta. In a post on Tumblr last June, Swift shared how she felt betrayed by Borchetta’s sale of her music to talent manager Scooter Braun. This poster could be
a callout to Borchetta as greedy for capitalizing
on Swift’s body of work, which famously features her
own feelings and experiences. Let’s take a look back
at the movie poster: “Man vs Disaster.” The fake title could reference
the action-film trope that all it takes is
one man to save the day. In contrast, Swift has often been said to be playing the victim when she tries to fight industry giants like record labels and streaming services. One of the fellow train
passengers is wearing a “Miss Americana & the
Heartbreak Prince” sweatshirt straight from Swift’s actual merch line. “Miss Americana” is
another song from “Lover” that deals with themes
of sexism and misogyny. Looking back to the movie poster, you’ll see the date July 20. Does this mean “Miss Americana” could be a single in the summer of 2020? Tyler opens a newspaper,
and the cover story asks, “What man won the year
in celebrity dating?” This headline calls
out the double standard that criticizes women but celebrates men for dating around. Swift herself is somewhat
of a poster child for this double standard and has spoken out against
it many times in the past. Tyler exits the train onto a platform and pauses to, uh, take a leak. He’s at 13th Street Station, a nod to Swift’s lucky number, 13, which we’ve seen referenced
many times before in past videos. The wall Tyler stops at
is covered in graffiti with the names of Swift’s past albums, like “Reputation,” “Red,” and “1989.” She’s hidden Easter eggs
through graffiti before, in many of her “Reputation”-era videos, like “Ready for It?” and “Delicate.” We also see the word karma in graffiti, which we’ve heard Swift use before in her clapback song “Look
What You Made Me Do.” ♪ Not for me, all I think about is karma ♪ A sign says, “Missing: If found, return to Taylor Swift.” And another one symbolizes no scooters. The posters and graffiti
are another reference to her ongoing battle with Scooter Braun and Scott Borchetta over the masters of all of the albums we see on the wall. Tyler’s peeing on the wall could represent how the two men, and men in the music industry in general, have disrespected Swift
throughout her career. There’s also a poster for “Mr. Americana,” directed by Larry Wilson, premiering at “Mandance,” and documenting Tyler Swift. Taylor Swift’s own documentary, “Miss Americana,” directed by Lana Wilson, premiered at Sundance earlier this year. When speaking to Glamour
about making the film, Wilson recalled how she
and her all-female crew were often not taken seriously
because of their gender. This riff on the documentary’s poster also relates to the fact that Swift directed this music video for “The Man.” Her impressive credits
for the song and video, that’s songwriter, performer,
executive producer, video director, and star, to be clear, come at a time when music, film, and other entertainment industries are being heavily criticized for their lack of opportunities
and recognition for women. As Tyler steps away from the subway wall, we see “The Man” written out in… well, it’s glittery and blue, which looks pretty similar
to Swift’s “Lover” aesthetic. Having “The Man” written in blue glitter could also be Swift’s way of saying men, just like women, can be complex and aren’t limited to
the narrow definition of masculinity society pushes on them. Next, Tyler’s on a yacht. If it looks familiar, that’s because it’s another nod to “The Wolf of Wall Street.” The movie not only embodies
the sexist double standards Swift calls out in “The Man,” but its star, Leonardo DiCaprio, is specifically
name-checked in the lyrics: DiCaprio is well known for dating a number of women,
especially younger models. And in “The Man,” Swift makes a point of emphasizing how men like DiCaprio get more of a “legend” status
for this type of dating, whereas women like herself are criticized for their dating habits. We see Swift call out
double standards again as Tyler leaves what looks
like a one-night stand. Instead of having the walk of shame that’s assigned to women, he struts through what looks like more of a hall of fame. 19 hands high-five him. They’re the 19 hands we saw in the song’s promotional photo. 19 is a number Swift’s been highlighting since even before the video was announced. During her woman of the
decade acceptance speech at the Billboard Music Awards, Swift mentioned 19 other
female artists by name. The references to the number are likely a nod to the 19th Amendment, which gave the first group of women the right to vote in the US. The amendment’s ratification
is seen as a landmark win in the women’s rights
movement in American history. Swift also released “The
Man” on February 27. This is the anniversary
of when the Supreme Court dismissed a challenge to the amendment and unanimously agreed
that the right to vote could not be denied on the basis of sex. And, if the hallway looks familiar, it could be because it resembles the one from Kanye West’s distinctly sparse home. You might recall that West
infamously interrupted a 19-year-old Taylor
Swift at the 2009 VMAs. And Swift’s not just
throwing shade at West here. Her reference is pretty significant under the context of “The Man.” When West interrupted her award speech, he implied that her work
wasn’t deserving enough of it. Years later, when West referenced Swift in his song “Famous,” he rapped, “I made that b—- famous.” West’s behavior is a clear example of men devaluing or even
straight up taking credit for a woman’s work. This reference seems even more purposeful after a scene in “Miss Americana” that shows Swift writing
“The Man” with Joel Little. She throws out some lyric ideas, saying: Which is exactly what West did. In the next scene,
Tyler’s being celebrated as the world’s greatest dad after seemingly doing the
bare minimum with his child. This scene addresses
another double standard, where single moms rarely
get any recognition, whereas their male counterparts are praised for little effort. If you look closely, you can also see that while Tyler is manspreading again, his daughter isn’t, which could be showing how girls are taught from a young age to take up less space. Also, catch a brief cameo from social-media star Dominic Toliver and actress Jayden Bartels. We next see Tyler partying
in a bar with other men. They throw around money as they take body shots off of women, referencing the reduction
of women to objects and being valued only for their bodies. The money they throw around
has Tyler’s face on it, a pretty obvious comment
to men owning more money because of the gender pay gaps and a straight-up lack of
opportunities for women. The men are all wearing
matching gold rings, which look similar to
fraternity or other club rings. This could be referencing
the boys’-club culture in many industries, especially the music industry. Next up, Tyler’s playing
a match of tennis. We can spot a Taylor
Swift merch water bottle under the bench. This scene seems to reference a specific incident with Serena Williams, when she was fined $17,000
for code violations at the 2018 US Open. Williams argued with the umpire and slammed her racket on
the ground during a match. She said her actions were due to her feeling that the umpire was unfairly penalizing her with his calls. Serena’s situation relates to Swift’s recent comment to CBS “Sunday Morning,” when she said, a man can react; “a woman can only overreact.” In the music video, Tyler’s
given a similar pass. He throws a tantrum, gets hysterical, smashes his racket, and
fights with the umpire. And no one does a thing. Not the ball girl, who’s actually TikTok star Loren Gray, or even the umpire, played by Swift’s own father, Scott. This could symbolize how people do notice men acting childish and emotional, but they don’t face the
same backlash that women do, and often for even lesser behavior. 58 years later, a very aged
Tyler is getting married to a much younger woman. Five plus eight is, of course, 13. The scene shows a stereotypical marriage between a super-old
guy and a younger girl. As the bride flashes her giant ring, it’s likely she’ll be painted the bad guy and labeled a gold digger. The light pink flower on Tyler’s lapel looks like the cornelia flowers Swift’s been using throughout
her “Lover”-era promo and also references the album’s
track “Cornelia Street.” We’ve seen a wedding and cake smashing in a “Lover”-era video before; in “You Need to Calm Down,” there’s an epic cake fight after a same-sex marriage. Swift could be drawing parallels to society’s acceptance
of what might be called a nontraditional marriage
with a larger age gap over one between people of the same sex. The scene also begs us
to imagine the reverse. If an older woman were
marrying a younger man, she’d be the one criticized
for “cradle robbing.” In any case, it’s the straight man who’s getting off easy. As the epic video comes to an end, Swift reverses gender roles one last time. We hear Swift, as the video’s director, yell, “Cut!” and Tyler walks off set. He asks Swift about his performance, but the voice we hear
is actually The Rock’s. Swift tells him to be
“sexier, maybe more likable.” She then praises Loren
for her outstanding work, when really she’s just
been standing around in the background. It’s Swift’s last dig at the ridiculous and sexist standards in
the entertainment industry, where men are showered
with praise and awards often for doing the bare minimum, while women are constantly
asked to do better by… well, by being sexier and more likable. “The Man” is a funny but poignant take on several of the double
standards women face and the larger systems that enforce them. Swift’s “Lover” era has seen her becoming more vocal about politics, and, if this video is any indication, she’s only getting started.

100 Replies to “Everything You Missed In Taylor Swift’s ‘The Man’ Video”

  1. I still can't get over kanye pulling that off like why wasn't he canceled?
    Besides no one would know about him without Kim or Taylor lmao

  2. This should be rule number one if ANYONE is going to do a entertainment career
    NEVER. BRING. POLITICS. INTO. ANY. SORTS. OF. ENTERTAINMENT.

  3. I didn’t realise Taylor was such a bitter man hating woman. No wonder she’s single most of the time. I truely hope she finds love or she may end up living with dozens of cats all bitter and twisted.

  4. One thing that I have noticed is that the lines from Miss Americana
    They whisper in the hallway, "she's a bad, bad girl" (okay!)
    The whole school is rolling fake dice
    You play stupid games, you win stupid prizes
    Which matches to the hallway scene in The Man Music Video

  5. I didnt miss anything cause i hate her music and i just am not watching even this video of yours. Just paused at 3 sec to write down my opinion and go.

  6. Taylor forgot to mention that she is only worth $360 million, but if she was a man, "he" would be worth an astounding $360 million. What Taylor needs to do is identify as a man when it comes to pay so she/he doesn't get paid less for her horrible political statements.

  7. Feminist cancer.. but I do agree on some of it.. just lost respect. She seems like a social Justice warroir.. :///

  8. I didn't know many of these…Thank you! It's really fun to guess out stuffs from miss Swift videos WE GET SERVED SO MUCH AHA

  9. So let me get this straight: an entitled wealthy white woman wants me to feel sorry for her because she imagines she has been somehow held back because of her gender. I think I'll file this under "Pretentious Bullshit."

  10. With a net worth of around $400 million, it's hard to see where "sexism" held her back. But then I rely on facts over feelings.

  11. Taloy is just mad, she can't find a "man" who will put up with her b!tchyness… This is the natural progression of a female's perception when they themselves are massively flawed. The way she acted in the video is basically the way no real men act. if I guy was "man spreading" like that, he'd be luck to leave with his knee caps and would be shown what a real alpha is… BUT HEY! she clearly things the guys she is into are like that… so maybe… pick an other man to date?

  12. So she "tailor's " each song from a man she slept with…how many songs has she "put out" now? Home girl has some serious daddy issues.

  13. You can say whatever you want about Taylor Swift, but her music video’s are powerful and has so many meanings. I love to watch her music video’s, they’re like movies.

  14. Let me offer up another interpretation, the man in the video does everything and receives nothing but criticism. The women in the video are showered with money and praise for doing nothing. That worlds greatest dad thing is a complete joke. Women are celebrated for being a mother with people constantly saying "being a mother is the hardest job in the world". Dads never even get a mention and are often drastically devalued. Be careful what you wish for ladies. The grass isn't as green as you think it is on the guys side. You're not going to get equality unless you start giving up some of the privileges you already have over men. There's a reason men kill themselves at higher rates than women. It's because being an average man is a lot harder than it seems.

  15. First off, how mind blown for Taylor to have so much things creatively being expressed through her videos.
    That was some serious research and analytics. How did you even find clues or thought about the ways things links together?
    That's just awesome.

  16. This video is complete trash. Taylor is merely singing Democrat talking points. She is a puppet. This nonsense makes me want to do all of the things in the video. Say thanks ladies! 😘😘😘😘😘😘😘

  17. The same media companies that supposedly pandered to white people and men for decades is now leading the charge to remind us of their hard work and dedication! Love it! ❤️ 😍

  18. As a massive Taylor Swift fan. I’m incredibly disappointed. Apparently a lot of people missed that the video is complete and utter shite.

  19. No matter what you think about her music or persona, you have to admit that her Sherlock like thinking through and giving hints and easter eggs of her music videos is damn impressive

  20. I came here just to thumb this down and mention that Swift is possibly the most over privileged woman with her millions of dollars and still claims to be oppressed. Please, tell me more about how tough life is from your pearly white (or beige, since it so wrong to be white these days… lol) high tower of fame and fortune…

  21. "You need to come down" – she cannot be more delicate than this!
    .
    .
    .
    "The Man" – oh where my fukin brain??? :))

  22. Does Taylor Swift realize how easy it is for her to sleep with an entire football team in one day? Can Ed Sheeran do that?!?
    No one wants to hear about her sexual conquests because it's the easiest thing for a woman to do…. Get laid. A man actually has to develop himself and work for it. She just has to be a "she". No accomplishment there Swift.

  23. Why hate on men for dating younger models. They date these older rich and famous men for clout and money too. I don't blame Leonardo he is creep for sure but those girls he date r equally pathetic. Also serena was reacting badly. And any other player would have gotten the same punishment. And she is a very senior player. People expect more from her.

  24. Luckily most males aren't what she's depicts in the video. And what's mostly depicted in the music video only happens to a very minority which the same ones that she mainly encounters. Furthermore for the female thing as for objects will look at what she's doing herself and also many females do it to themselves got to love these double standards rich people complaining that they're oppressed and while some of us are struggling.

  25. Kind of funny the same world that puts her into having multi-millions in her pocket is the same one that she's complaining about.

  26. As a man with chronic joint pain, asthma, insomnia, and PTSD from growing up in a low income area and having to take manual labor jobs and join the military to change my course in life im really glad she spoke out about the leg up ive had because im a man. When i had a heat stroke at 16 because i had to go to work and help support the house because my mom falsely accused my father of domestic violence and the courts sided with her despite lack of evidence i took solace in the fact that st least i have a penis. Bless tay tay for using her millions to speak out against the horribly unfair advantage ive had in life.

  27. You forgot to say that the tennis game was a “woman’s charity” but the player was a man 🙂

  28. This is such a great take-apart of her video frame by frame. So much is referenced and shot out here, it's astonishing how she pulls it off. Thank you for this!

  29. I know I'm gonna catch hell for this, but it's gotta be said:

    The underlining assumptions of Taylor Swift's video are actually wrong, exaggerated or one-sided. This Insider video is actually promulgating these same weird ideas.

    Chances are that Taylor and her fans are convinced that they are fighting misogyny, but honestly I think they're just setting up the stage for more leariness between the sexes. I think this because most, not all, most of what she talks about in her song is a really cynical and weird assumption of guys in general. Even though I know she will never realize that she's gradually becoming a misandrist and not a feminist, I hope in time other people will learn where the line is.

  30. The video was extremely sexist to men and should be removed… but it won't because the shitting on men and only worrying about women problems in the norm now. If we keep this path going for another 10+ years we will see a shift to men complaining about the same things women complain about. We all have problems, lets not focus on just women problems… thank you 🙂

  31. 0:44
    There's another man on the bench, but he is not been spreading, so all your logic fails here -_-

  32. 10:18 guy manspreading is taking space from women, people of color, older people and what seems to be hispanics

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