Caitlin Gallagher
August 31, 2017 3:25 pm

Taylor Swift has received a lot of praise — and a lot of criticism — since she released the music video for her new song, “Look What You Made Me Do.” Though she’s no stranger to scrutiny (as she addresses in the song and video), the director of “Look What You Made Me Do” is not letting the singer go undefended. Director Joseph Kahn has been using his Twitter account to stand by Swift, and that includes calling out what he thinks is a double standard when it comes to female creators.

As the director of the music videos for “Blank Space,” “Bad Blood,” “Wildest Dreams,” and “Out of the Woods,” Kahn frequently collaborates with — and defends — Swift. And on August 30th, he tweeted about gender equality, regarding how people have been responding to “Look What You Made Me Do,” when he wrote:

“If I plan something as a man I’m a ‘genius.’ If Taylor as a woman plans something she is ‘manipulative.’ Double standards. This is wrong.”

With Swift embracing snake imagery in “Look What You Made Me Do,” presumably as a way to reclaim the snake emoji after Kim Kardashian allegedly used it against her, it’s interesting that Kahn is addressing the fact that people are calling Swift “manipulative.” Swift has often been accused of being calculating and playing the victim — now more than ever before since the release of “Look What You Made Me Do.”

Kahn is absolutely right that a woman shouldn’t be judged for making conscious, creative decisions when it comes to her art. But when those decisions are calling out other celebrities she has feuds with, well, that does alter the situation just a little bit. Because it’s one thing to call a woman “manipulative” for something you’d praise a man for and quite another to criticize an artist of any gender for a music video that is intentionally serving the specific purpose of throwing shade.

To be fair, Swift is also mocking herself in “Look What You Made Me Do.” And while she’s busy doing that in the music video, Kahn is busy on Twitter commending his collaborator.

Ultimately, Kahn will not let Swift get attacked for what he perceives as misogyny — no matter what anybody else says about her, Swift’s director will always have her back.

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