Taylor Swift has been re-recording her discography after the rights to six of her albums were refused to her and kept under Shamrock Holdings. The company has the masters, the artwork and the videos and so, Swift took matters into her own hands.
Fearless: Taylor’s Version dropped in April this year and this November, we got Red: Taylor's Version.
She released a 14-minute short film for the track All Too Well, a song reportedly about her relationship with Jake Gyllenhaal. At the time she was 20 and he was 29, in a whirlwind relationship plastered to the public, and an age difference she references throughout the extended track.
"You said if we had been closer in age maybe it would have been fine" and 'I'll get older, but your lovers stay my age,'' hits home for a lot of young adult women as they look back on the relationships they had when just coming into adulthood.
Either growing up on or next to Taylor this kind of public acknowledgement of your own experiences could really guide young people away from the allure of an older partner.
The normalisation of big age gap relationships in media is concerning to some and people are starting to pick away at it; why is it so uncommon for public figures to date people their age?
There's the joke that Leonardo DiCaprio dumps all his girlfriends not long after they turn 26, and Keanu Reeves was praised for being married to a woman not in her 20s. Innocence and youth has continuously equated to worth and beauty.
The lyric “you keep my old scarf from that very first week,’ Cause it reminds you of innocence”, can simply be a reference to the ‘innocence’ of a new relationship, but given the quips throughout about age it can take on another meaning altogether. That's why the actors are the ages of Swift and Gyllenhaal at the time of their romance; it's uncomfortable for some to see.
Taylor ends the video as an author reading her book All too Well to an audience of young women.
As both a joint experience and a piece of advice, it’s refreshing to hear this song again not as a knee jerk heartbreak ballad but a reflection. 13 years on, Taylor is a person who has caught a lot of flak for dating ‘too much’ or ‘always writing about her exes’, but very little of the attention was on the men involved in these relationships.
Catching all the hate herself from the age of 16, it's time to reflect on why we deflect all criticism to the women involved and not the men.
I'm sure John Mayer is just glad the attention isn't on him for once, but don't rule it out; Speak Now: Taylor's Version is rumoured to be the next release.
Words by Josie Wade for Female First.
Tagged in Taylor Swift