Taylor Swift: Abandoned By Her Squad?

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Taylor Swift has been experiencing a lot of ups and downs recently.

Her return to the music world was less triumphant than expected, as "Look What You Made Me Do" was met with a mixed (at best) response from both critics and the ear-having public in general.

Her fortunes seemed to turn around with the release of the single's music video, which was hailed for its daring take on Taylor's many reinventions.

Taylor Swift in a Video

Less than one week after the release, however, many who initially applauded Swift are re-assessing the video, thanks in large part to what many perceive as petty shots at fellow celebs, including what might be a truly tasteless sight gag inspired by Kim Kardashian being robbed at gunpoint.

As one of the music industry's biggest names, Taylor is well acquainted with what a fickle mistress the public can be, but even she's never inspired such rapid changes in opinion.

In the past, whenever Swift was at a low point, be it the result of a breakup or one of her many, messy feuds, fans comforted themselves with the knowledge that she still had her "squad" of famous friends to lean on for support.

These days, however, several members of Taylor's clique seem intent on distancing themselves from the singer.

Rumors of Taylor's "squad problems" are nothing new, but this time Swift herself seems to be acknowledging that she's not as popular with fellow young female celebs as she used to be.

Taylor Swift, Look What You Made Me Do

The "LWYMMD" video cleverly acknowledges the dissipation of the squad with a scene in which Taylor sports a shirt signed by such A-list friends as  Lena Dunham, Selena Gomez, and Gigi Hadid.

Many have noted that some notable names - including that of Taylor's supposed best friend Karlie Kloss - are glaringly absent from the shirt.

Even more telling is the fact that few of Taylor's friends have voiced their support for her in the week since "LWYMMD" was released.

That's not terribly surprising, as the single has been scathingly critiqued not only for representing some of the weakest songwriting of Taylor's career, but also for alleged bullying and cultural appropriation.

The truth is, befriending Taylor used to be a quick and easy way for a lesser-known celeb to boost her public and earn instant cool cred.

Taylor Swift Rocks

These days, however, being besties with Swift can serve as a liability, as the members of her squad often find themselves in the position of being forced to defend flimsy arguments and problematic missteps.

As The Daily Beast points out, Selena Gomez became a victim of this phenomenon last year.

In the early days of Swift's feud with Kim Kardashian, Gomez rushed to her friend's defense, reminding fans that “there are more important things to talk about" than a petty squabble among celebs.

This prompted fans to seek out Gomez's stances on important topical issues, such as the Black Lives Matter movement, only to find she rarely addresses such issues.

The situation proved to be no more than a minor road bump in Selena's career, but it sort of thing one avoids entirely by not joining Swift's squad, and thus, implicitly co-signing the shade she throws at other public figures.

That's not to say that all of Taylor's friends buddied up to her solely for the attention, but it does seem that Taylor's inability to let go of a grudge is having a negative impact on more than just her music.

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Taylor Swift Biography

Taylor Swift and Friend
Taylor Swift is the next big thing in country music. She hails from Pennsylvania and has a younger brother named Austin. Personally,... More »
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Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift Quotes

I think it's kind of fun to call out your ex-boyfriends. Like why do this if you're not gonna take the opportunity to always have the last word. It's so much fun.

Taylor Swift

I saw that documentary on Britney Spears, and I feel bad for her—she can't leave her house!

Taylor Swift