Culture

John Mayer’s New Song Subtweets the Hell Out of Taylor Swift

Culture

John Mayer’s New Song Subtweets the Hell Out of Taylor Swift

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It must be so invigorating to be in a celebrity beef—to know that you have the power of responding to the other side in a public forum seen by millions waiting to analyze your choice of words and deduce how you, the celebrity, might have wronged or been wronged by another celebrity. John Mayer could’ve responded privately to Taylor Swift’s thinly veiled accusations that he’s basically just a pervy old dude in her song “Dear John,” which is supposedly about their brief relationship. Instead, he’s released a Tim and Eric-inspired video for a new song called “Paper Doll” that’s basically one giant “Deal with it” in Swift’s direction, filled with allusions to her lyrics and an undertext that suggests she should’ve coped instead of taking to the recording studio. (Which he could’ve done, alas.) Over the type of mewling, gliding melody you might expect from his acoustic side, Mayer drops lines like “You’re 22 girls in one”—see, because she wrote a song called “22”—and “Was it just too far to fall?”—see, because she wrote a song called “Jump Then Fall”—and “Holy hell, I know I was kind of a dick about it but a six-minute song is such an overreaction”—see, because… The video is super weird, too, which I’m a big fan of. That’s a way to take the sting out of a subtweet.