Fans Claim ‘betty’ as an obvious queer anthem

Fans Claim 'betty' as an obvious queer anthem

Taylor Swift burned down the Internet with the surprise release of folklore this week, and people have been quick to try and decipher her songs. Many have decided that ‘betty’ is an obvious queer anthem. 

If you have just come back from being lost in the forest or have just woken from a week-long sleep, you might not know that Taylor Swift dropped a surprise 8th studio album this week. Called folklore, the unexpected album set the Internet ablaze, and has been receiving very positive reviews since it came out. As with pretty much all of Taylor’s work, fans immediately set to work dissecting and discussing the songs, and what they might mean in relation to Taylor and her life.

However, one song from the album in particular has garnered a lot of attention. After many years of rumours and speculation that Taylor might be queer, ‘betty’ has a lot of people wondering if she has finally given the world an explicitly queer song.

The song is about a girl named ‘Betty’ (duh), who the narrator of the song is clearly into.

Seems pretty clear-cut, right? Not quite. At some point in the song, it becomes clear that ‘Betty’ talks to the narrator of the song, who is apparently named ‘James’.

Okay, so then it’s clear-cut that it’s not about two women, right? Wrong again! There are two theories as to why fans believe ‘James’ could refer to Taylor herself. Firstly, it’s well-known that Taylor is named after singer James Taylor. Additionally, Taylor’s rumoured girlfriend Karlie Kloss apparently has the middle name ‘Elizabeth’, which is often shortened to Betty. Put these together, and fans believe it could be a sign.

If that one doesn’t work for you, there is also a second theory fans have come up with to explain why ‘James’ is not necessarily a male. Taylor is good friends with Blake Lively, and Lively has two daughters with Ryan Reynolds named ‘Inez’ and ‘James’ – both of those names appear in ‘betty’.

The plot thickens! Fans dissecting the songs in this way is not as deranged as you might think. Taylor has a reputation (lol) as someone who loves to drop cryptic hints and clues and easter eggs all throughout her music and videos. You can’t blame fans for reading into things, or deciphering things as clues in regards to this song. Taylor has lead us down this path on purpose. Regardless of the validity of any of the theories, many queer fans have already claimed ‘betty’ as their own.

As a queer person, I fully get the urge to read into subtext and clues to try and ascribe queerness to entertainment. A lot of the time, subtext and queer reading of content is all we have. I can understand why it is exciting, especially for young queer fans of Taylor, to imagine a world in which she is queer, and in which she is singing queer songs.

If you ask me, even if it’s not the explicit intent from Taylor, the entire album has strong queer vibes, and you can claim it if you feel it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Live: Seattle-area protests: Live updates on Saturday, July 25

Live: Seattle-area protests: Live updates on Saturday, July 25

Chrissy Teigen Apologizes for Megan Thee Stallion Tweet

Chrissy Teigen Apologizes for Megan Thee Stallion Tweet