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Celebrity Slam - No fury like a Swiftie scorned

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We’ve been doing this Celebrity Slam thing for a long time now – well over a decade – and while we’d never claim to be experts, it’s safe to say that we’ve learned a few things about how it all works in the celebrity sphere. There are a lot of nuances, a lot of dos and don’ts as far as how one should behave in order to avoid landing in doomed situations. We could offer up a lot of tips, but this week’s item gives us the opportunity to share one of the biggest.

Do NOT, under ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, take a swing at Taylor Swift.

Leaving aside the fact that she will almost certainly eventually write a song about you that is both damning of your character and catchy as hell, thus ensuring that the shade cast your way will be part of the pop cultural landscape for the foreseeable future … she will not be shy about calling you out in the moment. And when that callout happens, well – the Swifties will come.

This week, Netflix f---ed around and they are now finding out.

At issue is the new Netflix streaming series “Ginny and Georgia,” which only just hit the service. Specifically, there’s a joke in the final episode of the series. The titular Ginny and Georgia are having an argument about relationships when the daughter (Ginny, we think?) says the line “What do you care? You go through men faster than Taylor Swift.”

Swift – whose relationship turmoil was admittedly culturally omnipresent in the early part of the 2010s – took umbrage with the joke, tweeting out the following:

“2010 called and it wants its lazy, deeply sexist joke back. How about we stop degrading hard working women by defining this horse s**t as fuNny.”

What followed was an absolute social media fracas, with the Swifties taking to the internet to put forth their full-throated defense of their queen.

Now, we’re not going to sit here and legislate the joke itself – we’re not above making reference to long-ago misdeeds and dalliances when we’re taking our swings in this space – but there’s a certain pragmatism that one would think a multibillion-dollar outfit like Netflix would take into account.

Basically, they’re in business with Taylor Swift. The singer has two different projects currently up on the service, with more stuff potentially in the pipeline. And while we have no doubt that “Ginny and Georgia” is a show that has much to offer, it seems unlikely that it will be able to build a comparable fanbase to, you know, one of the biggest pop stars of the 21st century.

Hell, it’s not even the most popular mother/daughter double-G-titled show on the service – they already have “Gilmore Girls,” for God’s sake.

Again, our problem isn’t with really with the joke itself, though we will concede that Swift’s descriptors of said joke are absolutely accurate – it is absolutely lazy and definitely sexist. Like we said, we’ve been guilty of some questionable taste with regard to the jokes we’ve made, though we like to think that we’re a bit more charming and/or clever about it.

Of course, we’re also a bunch of idiots writing a silly column in an arts weekly. We have no skin in the T-Swift game. Maybe if you’re Netflix, you should keep an eye on the people working for you to ensure that they aren’t cheesing off other people with whom you have a significant financial relationship? Just a thought – we’re no experts, after all.

And again – the Swifties are no joke. They can make you pay dearly should they choose to mobilize. Whether they do or not, well … that’s probably up to Netflix at this point. And if you’re someone who wants to believe that Swift has somehow overreacted, well … you don’t get to choose how someone is going to respond to what is said about them. Really, shouldn’t she be able to put all that stuff behind her? She’s long since moved on – perhaps it’s time for the rest of us (TV writers included) to follow suit.

Anyway, here’s a nickel’s worth of free advice, Netflix – apologize. Do the mea culpa and whatever else it takes. The fury of the Swifties is not a whirlwind you want to reap, no matter how many billions of dollars you have.

Last modified on Tuesday, 02 March 2021 05:47


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