Taylor Swift’s music video for “Midnights” lead single “Anti-Hero” has been edited to remove a scene that shows her stepping on a bathroom scale that read “fat.”
Variety can confirm the music video on Apple Music no longer shows the scale, instead, Swift’s anti-hero clone just looks at her with a face of disappointment. The music video on YouTube still features the scale displaying “fat.”
Contacted by Variety, reps for Swift and Apple Music did not immediately have a comment.
Speculation surrounding the reasoning behind the removal of those frames comes from online debate over the scene, which has since been labeled by some as “anti-fat” because of the indication that being fat is a negative thing.
In an Instagram post promoting the release of the music video (which she wrote and directed), Swift says the visual treatment was reflective of her own “nightmare scenarios and intrusive thoughts [playing] out in real time.” Within that context, the video matches the song’s introspective and analytical lyrics, which include lines such as “Sometimes I feel like everybody is a sexy baby / And I’m a monster on the hill.”
Swift has talked about struggling with an eating disorder in the past, most extensively in her 2020 Netflix documentary “Miss Americana.” In the film, Swift admits there have been times in the past (“It’s only happened a few times, and I’m not in any way proud of it”) when she’s seen “a picture of me where I feel like I looked like my tummy was too big, or… someone said that I looked pregnant … and that’ll just trigger me to just starve a little bit — just stop eating.”
Swift later elaborated on what she’s gone through for her Variety cover story, saying that it was difficult for her to speak up about it for the documentary.
“I didn’t know if I was going to feel comfortable with talking about body image and talking about the stuff I’ve gone through in terms of how unhealthy that’s been for me — my relationship with food and all that over the years,” she said. “But the way that Lana (Wilson, the film’s director) tells the story, it really makes sense. I’m not as articulate as I should be about this topic because there are so many people who could talk about it in a better way. But all I know is my own experience. And my relationship with food was exactly the same psychology that I applied to everything else in my life: If I was given a pat on the head, I registered that as good. If I was given a punishment, I registered that as bad.”
From Variety US