22 genius easter eggs and references in Taylor Swift's 'ME!' video
26 April 2019, 17:22 | Updated: 26 April 2019, 22:50
Taylor Swift and Brendon Urie's new video for 'ME!' contains several easter eggs to Taylor's previous songs and music videos - but did you spot them all?
It's finally arrived. A new Taylor Swift era is upon us as well as a brand new single called 'ME!' featuring Brendon Urie of Panic! At The Disco.
For weeks, Taylor had been counting down to a big announcement on April 26th. In the days leading up to the end of the countdown, fans had been sleuthing hard to find out what she was about to drop. All the Instagram clues, the butterfly mural in Nashville, her new aesthetic on the red carpet... they all built up to the big reveal: a new single - and a music video.
Taylor Swift's 'ME!' lyrics: Every single reference you missed in the Brendon Urie duet
Taylor confirmed in a YouTube live chat that the video contained a bunch of easter eggs and references for fans to find: "Okay regarding Easter Eggs. There are a lot of them in this video. Some you’ll find out right away and some will take a minute to reveal their meaning (omg why am I talking like a sorcerer)."
So, without further ado, let's take a deep dive into the video and locate every single one.
Here are all the easter eggs in Taylor Swift's ME! video.
1) The Reputation era snake gets turned into butterflies at the start of the video.
It's also the same snake that was featured in all the teaser videos for the Reputation era. There's also a loose reference to lyrics from 'Clean,' when Taylor sings, “when the butterflies turned to dust”. The return of the butterflies in the video flips the dark place, which Taylor was in, in 'Clean' on it's head and turns it into something positive, reflecting the vibe of 'ME!'.
From SNAKE turns into a BUTTERFLY! One of my favorite part of the music video! @taylornation13 @taylorswift13 #TaylorSwiftTONIGHT #MEmusicvideo pic.twitter.com/rM8ZeiOhEn— Taylor Swift Facts (@blessedswifty) April 26, 2019
2) The video is set in a Paris, just like the 'Begin Again' video.
Well, it's a heightened version of Paris but still! It's a whole new era and outlook for Taylor following Reputation. You could say she's...beginning again. Duh.
3) The opening of the video appears to be a callback to Panic! At The Disco's 'But It's Better If You Do'.
Panic!'s video opens with an argument between a couple in an apartment before the other storms out. Taylor has written about how Panic!'s music was a big part of her teenage years in an essay for ELLE UK. With Brendon Urie on the track, it could be an homage to the band's work.
4) Taylor's cats Olivia and Meredith make an appearance at the beginning of the video.
The cats are expanding their acting careers! Olivia can also be seen in 'Blank Space'.
5) The Dixie Chicks make a subtle cameo appearance.
Remember that picture of the chicks with sunglasses on that Taylor posted on Instagram? Well, they were a reference to the "cool chick" lyrics in the song - and a reference to the Dixie Chicks, who appear in painting form on the wall of chicks.
Taylor, a life long stan of the Dixie Chicks, included the band in her essay about music in ELLE UK. Taylor also referenced Panic! in the same playlist so does that mean another collab is coming?
6) As Taylor walks through the room, there are 13 dark clouds surrounding her.
Taylor will never stop referencing the number 13. Neveerrrrrrr!
7) There's a reference to her now infamous phone call with Kanye West and various other lyrics from her past albums.
Taylor sings "I know that I get psycho on the phone...". It's likely a reference to the "I’m sorry, the old Taylor can’t come to the phone right now. Why? Oh, cause she’s dead!" line in 'Look What You Made Me Do'. Taylor also sings "I’m pretty sure we almost broke up last night. I threw my phone across the room, at you" in 'Stay Stay Stay'.
She's not had a great relationship with phones, has she? Maybe just stick to texting...
8) The pink phone symbolises how she's finally leaving the phone drama being her.
In the scene, Taylor walks past a pink phone, touches it, but does not pick it up. As she walks past, the cloud turns into a snake and follows her. She's then consumed by one of the clouds but walks ahead and out through the doors, leaving the darkness behind and stepping into the light.
i'm super emotional? are these snakes like eating her? but she walks out and she's just like a phoenix rising from the ashes? idk my brain is running all over the place at this entire video @taylornation13 @taylorswift13 please help me 😂 #MeOutNow #TaylorSwiftTONIGHT pic.twitter.com/lsTLrPUqoe— 💛☂️ a cool chick. (@doryaf) April 26, 2019
9) Taylor dances with seven dancers and seven briefcases.
Her new era will focus on her seventh studio album. Seven bags secured.
10) The clock behind Brendon Urie in the apartment says 8:30, which fans are now speculating could be a hint to the album release date.
As we all know, every detail in a Taylor Swift video means something - and the inclusion of that clock is not a mistake. 8/30 could signify August 30th. In Taylor's 2019 calendar, there's another wax stamp which could signal the start of another countdown. August 30th is also a Friday, a perfect day to drop an album?
11) There are 13 Umbrella people falling from the sky - not including Brendon Urie.
The number 13 strikes again!
12) One of those Umbrella people is her back up dancer Christian Henderson.
13) The video references several musicals: Wizard of Oz, Mary Poppins and Moulin Rouge are all included.
The brick road, yellow pavement and rainbow over the 'emerald city' are have visual connections to Wizard of Oz. The rooftop scene in Paris is reminiscent of Moulin Rouge's Elephant Love Medley and Your Song scenes. The Umbrellas? It's all very Mary Poppins, isn't it?
The video also has strong visual references to french musicals such as The Umbrellas of Cherbourg and The Young Girls of Rochefort.
14) The 'Lover' sign on the building could hint at Taylor's next single.
The sign could be another reference to the famous L'Amour sign in Moulin Rouge but what if it's an easter egg for the name of the next single from the album? Taylor dropped a ton of hints about the track titles in the Ready For It? video. Has she done the same here? Time will tell...
15) In the background of the skyline, you can see some iconic London landmarks, including Big Ben clock tower and St Paul's Cathedral.
These are all likely references to Taylor's boyfriend Joe Alwyn, who is from London.
16) The entire video takes place inside a chrysalis.
Another reference to the rebirth of Taylor's butterflies - and the new Taylor Swift herself, who has shed her dark Reputation era and emerged into a colourful legend. It's a whole metamorphosis.
17) The refusal of an engagement ring could be a call back to the 'Look What You Made Me Do' video.
In the video, Taylor rejects an engagement ring. Fans seem to think that this has the same energy as the empty engagement ring box and the word 'no' spelled out in jewellery in the LWYMMD video. At the time, fans speculated that she had rejected a proposal from Calvin Harris.
In this video, Taylor could also be poking fun at the fact that the tabloids are convinced that her and Joe Alwyn are engaged, when actually, they might have just got another cat instead.
18) The cat that Brendon gives to Taylor was the secret that she's been keeping for months.
In the video, Brendon offers Taylor a new kitten after rejecting flowers and an engagement ring. Taylor revealed that the video contains a secret that she's "been keeping for months." The Nashville butterfly mural that Taylor commissioned also contained three cats... She's definitely about to reveal a new cat, isn't she?!
SHE IS! Taylor shared a picture of the cat on Twitter a few hours after the video was released.
And then there were three… pic.twitter.com/v8DyjdL1ec— Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) April 26, 2019
19) A kaleidoscope of loud heartbeats under coats?!
One fan on Tumblr made a connection between the scene where Brendon opens his coat to reveal a wooden heart that contains a kaleidoscope of hearts... the lyrics of Taylor's 'Welcome to New York'! (Taylor later confirmed the reference on Tumblr.)
20) Taylor can be seen wearing cowboy boots in one scene.
Fans have speculated that Taylor might be about to go back to her country roots on her 7th album. With references to the Dixie Chicks in the video, Country Taylor might actually make an appearance after all. Get ready to yee haw like you've never yee hawed before.
21) Fans have spotted a potential reference to 'ME!' in the lyrics to Reputation track 'Endgame'.
In 'Endgame', Taylor sings "Reputation precedes me". It could just be a coincidence but it's hard to see anything that Taylor does as a coincidence. Reputation, Taylor's sixth album literally preceded 'ME!'.
What makes this reference even better is that 'ME!' was released on the same day as Avengers: Endgame. This literally cannot be a mere coincidence. IT'S TOO PERFECT!
"reputation precedes me"— ✰ caitlin ✰ (@polar_swift) April 25, 2019
reputation. precedes. ME.
oh my god
22) All the hints from Instagram were screenshots from the music video.
After weeks of trying decipher what her hints meant, it turns out that they were all snapshots from parts of her video. The flowers can be seen in the background of the apartment, the pink dress is what she's wearing on the roof, the cats, the yellow suit, the multicoloured floor, the briefcases and of course... the chicks in sunglasses.
CAN YOU BELIEVE?!