Yesterday, Taylor Swift announced the October drop date for her new album of ’80s pop–inspired tunes, 1989. She also released a dance-filled (some say cringe-inducing) video for her first single, “Shake It Off,” which lit up the Internet with love and loathing. Whether you adore or abhor the video, the real question is this: does it stand up to Mariah Carey’s 2005 video for her same-named single? Here, Jillian Vieira, FLARE’s resident Swift apologist, and Michael Li Preti, our Mimi die-hard, debate.
Jillian: Say what you want about the Queen of Singles Dedicated to Her Exes, but at least T-Swift has a sense of humor about herself—an endearing quality so rare in this Insta-perfection-obsessed era. You can’t deny the appeal of her fresh optimism and wholehearted geekery (those moves look like they were choreographed by a terrible dancer who knows it). And, with all due respect to Ms. Mariah Carey (and I’ve got a lot—hello, “Heartbreaker”), Taylor’s hair and makeup game in her version of “Shake It Off” is ON.
Michael: Professional victim Taylor Swift manages to come back from the most successful album cycle of her career with a single about her haters. If she spent half as much time finessing her moves for the video as she did obsessing over her detractors, maybe it wouldn’t be such a disaster. Sorry, TayTay, but Mariah did “Shake It Off” first, better—and in a rose petal–filled bathtub. #HatersGonnaHateHateHateHateHate