New Year, new Taylor Swift music video. The sixth single off of 1989 is “Out of the Woods.” It is nothing like the video for “Shake It Off,” or “Blank Space,” or “Wildest Dreams,” and especially not “Bad Blood.” BUT, I could see it kinda tying together with “Style.” It’s got lots of nature imagery, and Taylor giving the camera looks, and it’s all about — what else? — a boy.
But it’s not all about the boy. There’s text accompanying the video that clearly states “she lost him, but she found herself, and somehow that was everything.” Guess you could say that Taylor has made it out of the woods, if the woods are a turbulent relationship with a boy (cough*Harry*cough).
For a seemingly simple idea, with Taylor literally trying to get out of the woods (out of the woods, out of the woods), there’s a lot to digest in the video. Watch it once, or twice, or fifteen times, and then let’s dive in.
1. Full disclosure: I really like “Out of the Woods,” and it might be one of my favorite songs off 1989. So this video is already very exciting.
2. Except, the video starts at the beach, and I’m not a huge fan of the beach. But if Taylor wants to go to the beach, then I guess I’m going to the beach with her like a good friend.
3. Taylor’s beach immediately starts sprouting roots, or vines, or whatever the heck is happening here. Settle in, because we’re in for a magical Tay video.
4. Clearly, these are Taylor’s woods. Gonna guess that she’s going to try and get out of them.
5. I find myself very anxious over the fact that Taylor is wandering around the woods and not wearing any shoes.
6. She’s a very brave soul to risk her feet like that. What happens if she steps on a stray twig?
7. Taylor finds herself stuck in some thick vines, and I can’t help but think of that scene in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs where Snow is running through the forest.
8. Oh good something else to worry about. There are wolves in the woods, too.
9. This wolf is saying, “my, what pretty blue eyes you have, and such a pretty matching blue dress to go with it.” Or whatever wolves say.
10. The wolves then start chasing Taylor, like those wolevs chase Belle in Beauty and the Beast.
11. I know I’m not supposed to like the wolves, but when they’re jumping to catch up to Taylor they just look so cute, and like actually cuddly dogs, and I want to stop and play with them for a second.
12. Taylor don’t stop to play with them, you’re trying to get OUT OF THE WOODS.
13. Oh, then the wolves and Taylor become friends, I guess. She can befriend any living organism.
14. Taylor Swift, walking into 2016 like:
15. Ah, so this is the part where I start to get lots of Lord of the Rings vibes. I know I’m probably not supposed to get Lord of the Rings vibes, but I can’t help it.
16. Taylor appears to be walking somewhere, and she’s barefoot, and has some forest creatures for company, just like the Fellowship setting ot to destroy the One Ring.
17. Also these striking aerial shots remind me of Peter Jackson’s aerial shots of Middle Earth, but enough about Lord of the Rings.
18. Tay’s thinking, “the cold never bothered me anyway, LOL.” (Sorry) (Why does this video conjure up so many Disney movies?)
19. Then things get messy. Actual messy, becayse Taylor starts rolling around in the mud.
20. Taylor, you do you. If you want to roll around in the mud, do it.
21. Then the fourth — and last! — Disney allusion in the video. Suddenly Taylor grows roots (?) and becomes a tree (??) and I secretly hope that the next second she’s going to turn into Grandmother Willow from Pocahontas. Aren’t you kinda rooting for that, too? (Rooting? Tree? Get it?)
22. It doesn’t happen. Instead, she’s visited by glowing sparkles, that could be fireflies.
23. Then, everything sets ON FIRE.
24. Well, that escalated quickly.
25. Don’t worry, she’s OK. She’s got her wolf pack with her.
26. We’re probably not going to see these wolves on stage with her anytime soon, though. Can you even imagine? Can you imagine her being like, “Here’s my squad! And also some wolves!!”
after destroying the One Ring Taylor has made it out of the woods! And she appears to have made it to… herself.
28. Has she come full circle? Is this the Taylor we saw at the beginning of the video at the beach? Was this whole journey her inner struggle to break out of the woods, AKA the relationship?
29. This is like Taylor inception.
30. Did she make it? Did she make it out of the woods? (Out of the woods, out of the woods?)
31. The video ends with some text: “She lost him, but she found herself, and somehow that was everything.”
32. Safe to guess this means that yes, Taylor made it out of the woods. She might have lost the paper airplane boy along the way (cough*Harry*cough), but she came out the otherside so much stronger. As you do.
33. This is a good video. [Watches it 15 more times]
(Images via YouTube.)