Taylor Swift’s song “The Man”, from her newest album Lover, is one of her most on-the-nose feminist anthems. Swift, who has faced relentless harassment by various industry men throughout her career, uses her platform as a singer-songwriter to share how she feels about societal issues in much of her newer music.
With lyrics like “I’m so sick of running as fast as I can / Wondering if I’d get there quicker if I was a man”, Swift is taking on the patriarchy by her own means. Of course, with every major Swift song comes a super creative, engaging music video.
Recently, Swift released the long-awaited “The Man” music video, in which she not only stars but also directed—taking her creative liberty to a whole new level. Swift is the epitome of a woman in power in the entertainment sphere, and she’s utilizing her agency to make a splash.
In the music video, 30-year-old Swift is near unrecognizable as she plays a man, making a very important statement by way of her acting. The lyrics make the point that the world views men and women very differently, and here, Swift portrays a man, looking not at all like her very feminine self.
She appears as the man she sings about: an alpha, a commandeering force, the boss. She urinates on a wall, does what she likes and marries a young girl—all under the guise of “the man”.
The music video packs a punch with its conclusion, where Swift asks the “man” character, “Could you try to be sexier? Maybe more likeable this time?”. Though its conclusion makes an astute point, the entirety of the video is full of color, pastels and various cameos, including Swift’s own father.
Though Swift plays the male protagonist in the video, many would never have guessed—even after watching the video multiple times. Perhaps this was her intention. Underneath the guise of facial hair and muscles, it was all Swift, but it was certainly hard to see.
Swift admitted to fans it took five hours per day to get into costume for the video, which had a complicated makeup and hair process. Becoming a Wall Street boss is certainly not an easy task, but Swift’s team succeeds flawlessly.
Beyond just the look, her acting doesn’t disappoint. Her sweeping, brute movements don’t give away that behind the costume, it’s Taylor Swift. She worked with a movement coach to help her nail the physical attributes as well.
In exclusive clips and pictures, Swift has revealed to fans how she transformed into “The Man” for the video. You can check out these exclusive images are available here.