Taylor Swift dropped her album Midnights on October 21, followed by a music video for the lead single ‘Anti-Hero’. But right after its release came heavy criticism for the singer visualising her nightmares in the music video, including one of gaining weight. The video has now been edited and the scene depicting Swift on a weight scale that reads “fat” has been scrapped.
According to Variety, the music video on Apple Music no longer shows the weight scale and instead focuses on the ‘Style’ singer’s anti-hero clone staring back at her reflection with a face of disappointment. However, the original music video is still available to watch on YouTube.
Speculation surrounding why the frames were removed comes from online debate over the scene, which has since been labeled “anti-fat” by some due to the indication that being fat is a negative thing.
A user on Twitter wrote that it’s okay to appreciate Swift as an artist and perhaps the album Midnights as well but she can be called out for her “blatant fatphobia” and expected to do better.
Another added that it wasn’t the word “fat” that offended her but the choice of the “least creative way to portray an eating disorder”.
The debate also featured fans defending Swift’s vision and saying that the mindset was presented in a way that is “consumable” for audiences and that Swift personally dealt with body dysmorphia.
Almost a week ago, Swift had shared photos from ‘Anti-Hero’ set on Instagram, promoting the release of the music video. She had said that the visual treatment was reflective of her own “nightmare scenarios and intrusive thoughts [playing] out in real time.”
Swift has publicly talked about her eating disorder in the past. It was also a part of her 2020 documentary for Netflix Miss Americana that saw the singer admitting that in in the past when she saw pictures of herself she’d feel like her tummy was too big. She also said that if someone said she looked ‘pregnant’, it would trigger her to starve herself.