Katy Perry used her Vogue interview to shade the hell out of Taylor Swift


Gossip has been struggling this month, but things should really pick up in May. First we’ve got the Met Gala, and then we’ve got the Cannes Film Festival. So, that’s what we’ve got to look forward to. The 2017 Met Gala is being co-chaired by Katy Perry and Pharrell Williams, and so it makes total sense that Katy got the May cover of Vogue. Interestingly enough… last year’s May cover girl was Taylor Swift, who was co-chair of last year’s Met Gala. My guess is that Taylor will not even attend this year’s gala, right? Not with her ENEMY Katy Perry co-chairing.

Anyway, Vogue put Katy in eight different looks by Rei Kawakubo and Comme des Garçons for the editorial. Because Commes des Garcons is the designer/theme of this year’s gala. Expect lots of shapeless sack dresses and minimalism, I guess. Now that I’m putting all of the pieces together… this Vogue cover is probably one of the reasons why Katy has been changing her hair so much lately. I also think it’s funny/sad/stupid that Katy Perry – a HUGE culture-vulture for all things Japanese – is co-chairing an event for a Japanese designer. Like, Anna Wintour didn’t even bother to find a Japanese celebrity or a Japanese-American celebrity to co-chair the event. So, you can read Katy’s Vogue profile here. Some highlights:

Her evangelical-Christian childhood: “The schools were really makeshift. Education was not the first priority. My education started in my 20s, and there is so much to learn still.” She was not, for instance, “allowed to interact with gay people,” she remembers, and “there is some generational racism. But I came out of the womb asking questions, curious from day one, and I am really grateful for that: My curiosity has led me here. Anything I don’t understand, I will just ask questions about….My house was church on Sunday morning, church on Sunday night, church on Wednesday evening; you don’t celebrate Halloween; Jesus gives you your Christmas presents; we watch Bill O’Reilly on TV. That was my whole childhood and youth and early teens. I still have conditioned layers dropping off of me by the day.”

She follows Bill O’Reilly on Twitter. “I want to know what’s going on on the other side. I don’t want to be ignorant.”

Her life at 32: “It’s a nice place to be. I love it! I wouldn’t give anything to go back to my 20s; I’m so much more grounded. And I’ve learned a lot of lessons—patience, the art of saying no, that everything doesn’t have to end in marriage. That your education can start now. I blasted off on a rocket, holding on for dear life.”

The message: “I’ve seen behind the curtain and I can’t go back. I used to be the queen of innuendo, everything done with a wink. Now I want to be the queen of subtext—which is a cousin to innuendo, but it’s got more purpose.”

She’s not afraid to be political: “I don’t think you have to shout it from the rooftops but I think you have to stand for something, and if you’re not standing for anything,” she adds pointedly, perhaps aiming at some of her deliberately apolitical confreres, “you’re really just serving yourself, period, end of story. ‘California Gurls’ and fluffy stuff would be completely inauthentic to who I am now and what I’ve learned. I do believe we need a little escapism, but I think that it can’t all be that. If you have a voice you have a responsibility to use it now, more than ever.”

Her thoughts, post-election: “I was really disheartened for a while; it just brought up a lot of trauma for me. Misogyny and sexism were in my childhood: I have an issue with suppressive males and not being seen as equal. I felt like a little kid again being faced with a scary, controlling guy. I wouldn’t really stand for it in my work life, because I have had so much of that in my personal life. But it’s an awakening that was necessary because I think we were in a false utopia . . . we can’t ever get that stagnant again. I am so grateful that young people know the names of senators. I think teenage girls are going to save the world! That age group just seems to be holding people accountable. They have a really strong voice—and a loud one.”

[From Vogue]

That was some well-delivered and well-deserved shade for Taylor Swift. Sometimes I think Katy is very dense and ignorant, and then she’ll do something like shade the f–k out of Taylor Swift without even mentioning her name, and suddenly I think Katy is a genius. Yes, Taylor Swift is only serving herself. Yes, Katy Perry is more interesting because she at least did her part to stand up for women and stand against fascism. Speaking of, the Daily Beast did another excellent piece about the kind of performative (white) feminism from certain people – go here to read. Katy just reminded me of it.


Photos courtesy of Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott/Vogue.

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57 Responses to “Katy Perry used her Vogue interview to shade the hell out of Taylor Swift”

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  1. KLO says:

    I really like Katy. I sometimes even listen to her music voluntarily. She is a beautiful woman who is in great shape.

    But this cover is godawful. they made her look like Cruella de VIlle.

  2. QQ says:

    *slow Clap* collect that limp hair Maam, im all for being team not her or the other one either, here

    Also this: The message: “I’ve seen behind the curtain and I can’t go back. I used to be the queen of innuendo, everything done with a wink. Now I want to be the queen of subtext—which is a cousin to innuendo, but it’s got more purpose.” … so is this about less corny costumes ( to accommodate no whipping cream titty cannons) or more substance free lyrics about Pablum Empowerment??.. I guess Sis .. do you, your tunes and oeuvre aint for me

  3. Jerricabenton says:

    “If you stand for nothing, Taylor, what will you fall for?” ~ Katy Perry, probably.

  4. naomipaige says:

    Katy Perry = BLAH!!!

    I don’t get what the big hooplah is about this chick.

  5. rachel says:

    Katy Perry represents the Japanese culture the same way Gwen Stefani does. I smell disaster with this theme. I guess it should be… Interesting.

    • Jeesie says:

      To be fair the theme is Comme des Garçons and Rei Kawakubo, not ‘Japan’. It should lead to a lot of minimalist looks and bold avant garde looks, not necessarily looks that obviously draw from Japanese culture (beyond one specific designers impact on the culture).

      • Brittney B says:

        You’re being too generous, Jeesie. We’ve already seen how most celebs interpret these themes: seizing the most general part of the idea (e.g. “Robots!” when it was about merging craftsmanship and technology), and then running with the most stereotypical possible version of it.

      • WeAreAllMadeofStars says:

        Or it will just lead to boring silly mainstream celebrities taking the theme literally or ignoring it entirely in favor of dressing like they’re going to literally every other party in L.A. The Met Gala deserves its declining status after destroying its purpose and ambiance with celebritization. Shame on them.

      • Jeesie says:

        Sure, 90% of the attendee’s just wear a nice dress that has nothing to with the theme or go with the most basic interpretation, but my point was more that there’s zero reason for any dumbasses to show up dressed as a geisha or do a whole ‘Harajuko Girl’ thing, because that’s not at all what the designer is about. It would be like showing up in Lederhosen because German designer Karl Lagerfeld was being honoured.

  6. trollontheloose says:

    I would have LOVED a Japanese designer on the cover. I follow a few of them as well as Russians and others. It’s mind blowing creations/creative. Yojiro Kake is my fav du jour. As for Perry it’s enough with the shades. Kanye was obsessed Katy is obsessed, there is just room for everyone opinions and no need to stand on someone shoulders to make it like “i’m the good one”.

  7. Clare says:

    Katy says a lot of stupid shit and often puts her foot in it – but I have mad respect for the fact that she really does put her money where her mouth is. Her music makes my ears hurt, but she wasn’t afraid to be political – something that probably cost her money and fans – she gets credit for that.

  8. Twink says:

    Well said, Katy. Taylor probably voted for Trump.

  9. Shambles says:

    I still agree with this message, and Katy’s not the first person to say it. Taylor Swift has an enormous platform, and she chose not to use it to affect change in this extremely important election. She’s allowed to do that, but we’re also allowed to side-eye the f*ck out of her for it.

    • Erinn says:

      I agree. I mean, she doesn’t HAVE to do anything. But when so many other people are using their platform for good, it’s kind of weird to not be doing something similar. She doesn’t have to fully endorse a candidate, or anything. But she can do things like draw attention to charities that are helping people who are most at risk under the presidency, and stuff like that. But it seems like it’s just crickets.

      One thing I don’t get is that someone like Katy can throw shade however, whenever, for however long she wants, and she gets applauded for it. She talks about how other people are being self-serving. The whole backup dancer thing happened in 2014. She’s successfully jumped on every ‘screw TS’ train that’s left the station since then. It’s been more than two years – why is this considered appropriate behavior? Yeah, when someone drags you or whatever, and you respond to that it’s normal human behavior. It’s not really mature but it makes sense at the time. But over two years later and you’re still drawing attention to yourself when someone else has an issue with that person? How is THAT not self serving?

      Ultimately – cheers for her attempting to educate herself, and for using her money for good causes. But I still think she’s kind of just a crappy person as well – and the Brittney thing makes me think that she hasn’t grown as much as she wants people to believe. Also what is up with her music? It used to be annoying but catchy… but I can’t remember the last time I’ve actually liked a KP song.

      • Brittney B says:

        Every album seems to be about “reinvention” and trying a new genre, so how much do you want to bet… Taylor’s upcoming project is political.

        She’s obviously laying low for maximum impact, and any political messages *now* would be too little too late… but I bet you anything she’s going to turn her coded takedowns on Trump in at least one song. And any blowback from red state fans will result in other people defending her, and she’ll be on the “right side of history”, and we won’t get to talk about her silence and apathy anymore because we’re supposed to support each other right now.

        Sorry, that escalated a little. Just a theory!

      • WeAreAllMadeofStars says:

        I honestly would bet the entirety of my financial worth that you are wrong. It’s TAYLOR SWIFT. She’s a one-trick pony that doesn’t have anything to say. So she’ll put out a song about rah-rah-I’m-so-feminist-I-support-girl-power and be done with it. Insulting no one other than the men in her fauxmances has always been her M.O.

    • Geekychick says:

      On the other hand, I honestly feel like Perry’s activism is part of her image and brand much more than her own inner need for it.

      • OhDear says:

        Yeah, this is what bothers me – I hate how certain celebrities and corporations are using activism and political movements to sell themselves/their product/their brand, especially now that being “woke” is an in thing. In that case, I’d rather they be quiet about it.

    • QueenB says:

      Right. Its not illegal what Taylor did. So she didnt HAVE to. But we also dont have to like her and we dont have to shut up about it.
      If celebs should talk about issues and if they do more harm by speaking is a difficult discussion. Femininsm in this example certainly hasnt only profitited from famous people but its been watered down considerably and basically only used to talk about stuff that affects wealthy white women or for some male celebs to say something basic and being applauded by that by very gullible women. But Taylor Swift used feminism to sell her albums and to attack other women and to shield herself from a tame joke. Funny how the “women who dont support other women” came back so quickly to bite Taylor in the butt.

      I mean we can argue that someone should use their platform and do anything not to have Trump by now but if we need a vapid pop star to tell people that then we are screwed anyway.

      I’d be much more likely to defend a celeb thats always been quiet about political stuff and only did escapist songs as opposed to someone who cashes in on political movements.

      • supposedtobeworking says:

        but then there are so many others who wish celebrities would keep their opinions to themselves. I don’t think they can win.

        I wish we looked to people educated in politics, economics and public policy to inform us, and that we trusted and admired them as much as ‘we’ trust and admire celebrities. We as society put far too much attention and admiration on celebrities, and far too little on people in other careers. I wish we had some Dr. Martin Luther King Jrs and some Susan B Anthony’s, people within the movements who are famous for their own work, not just their pop culture work. (And yet, I think art is such a valuable way to reflect society and make statements, I just wish the pool was bigger, more diverse and interesting).

  10. Cheryl says:

    Celebrities have almost become irrelevant in 2017. Before Trump celebrities were everywhere with their causes and people listened like what they had to say was important. Now, however the actual “news” is so much for interesting and not to many people care about what the celebrities think. Like who actually cares what Katy Perry thinks? Even on celebrity blogs celebrities seem boring when reporting on things that are going on in the US and the world. Just my thoughts. As well shading someone else is just so pathetic. I get that it is fun in the business to put others down to make yourself look better. But in the end it turns out that it works against the celebrity. It just becomes like a cat fight. To be respected stay in your own lane. But then if they did that we would not have gossip would we?

    • laulau says:

      I’ve been thinking the same thing regarding the diminished celebrity ‘importance’ as of late. We are living in a giant global spy novel so of course Kim’s butt is less interesting. I will say tho, I miss the fluff a bit… These are anxious times and while I’ve been a politics junky for my whole adult life I do like some useless distractions too.

      I’ve always found with feminism, you can point out cultural flaws, religious flaws, political flaws and the media will pay some attention… Point out corporate flaws in terms of modern day slavery and unsafe factories and the conversation stops.
      Like Pepsi taking massive amounts of rain water out of the natural cycle in poor areas and selling it in the developed world is awful and so unjust but Kendall being an idiot is why people want to boycott?

    • QueenB says:

      “I’ve always found with feminism, you can point out cultural flaws, religious flaws, political flaws and the media will pay some attention… Point out corporate flaws in terms of modern day slavery and unsafe factories and the conversation stops.” thats a good point. Its something you have to admire about capitalism. Its talent to turn even movements that try to abolish it into cash. Che Guevara sold a lot of shirts!
      Feminism certainly is a brand strategy now and I think even the last person who wanted to tell me before that that was great has realized by now that it is not.
      Feminism seems to have become a lot more corporate. I mean it makes sense you can sell more stuff to women with a feel good message and can shield yourself from criticism but that wasnt the original goal of the movement.
      But just “Lean In” and turn yourself into a corporate puppet or a female CEO that exploits women around the world!

    • Marianne says:

      Exactly. Whether or not Taylor Swift had come in vocally in support of Hilary, it wouldnt have changed the election. Hilary had lots of support from big time people in Hollywood. It didnt make a difference.

      And for all we know Taylor Swift or any other celebrity for that matter could be writing to congress or donating money to various organizations that are supporting movements like blacklivesmatter or whatever. Just because they aren’t tweeting out a hashtag doesnt mean they dont stand for anything.

  11. Sam says:

    So Katy Perry can be homophobic, make fun of the mentally ill and be racist but because she shades Taylor Swift, she’s good in your book? Lol Sorry they’re both trash and they’re both cut from the same cloth of self serving white feminism. Katy just goes about it a different way than Taylor.

  12. Freddy Spaghetti says:

    Katy is just as mean as Taylor Swift. Actually, I don’t think Taylor has ever made fun of Britney and her mental illness.

    I can’t get on board with Katy. I think she’s just as bad, if not worse, than Taylor. Meh to both of them.

  13. Oxy says:

    From what I remember there are usually 2-4 more co-chairs alongside Anna so I don’t think it’s just Katy Perry (with the biggest name getting the most press and cover I guess). I’m sure they will have a Japanese representative there just like they did for the Chinese themed MET.

  14. A says:

    Katy Perry’s no winner in my book, but I do like what she had to say about her upbringing and stuff. I think that’s very relateable for a lot of folks, and I’ve been sooo curious to know more about that sort of stuff ever since I found out that she grew up in a hardcore evangelical home. The bit about the first few days post-election taking her back to her childhood, having grown up with a suppressive men in her life and all that….that really hit me hard.

  15. Rosie says:

    Sorry but Taylor is a million times more talented than Katy.
    At least she can manage to make a good song, when was the last time Katy did that?
    And Taylor has never mocked someone with mental illness.
    Honestly aside from the Kanye thing what has she done to get so much hate? Nothing really, I don’t think being a savy business person an caring about her image are bad things.

  16. Jayna says:

    I found her interview really interesting. She’s curious. She’s evolving and maturing, not just focused on her pop world.

    I felt the same way as Katy post-election, and still do. I’m angry, and I am bitter when I look at those photos with Trump surrounded by his deplorable Republican white male henchman, making decisions that affect women.

    My anger has been out of control these last two weeks. I’m not handling this presidency well at all. I used to say the bar is set so low for Trump that he gets away with everything, no matter how vile or false. But someone else was right. What bar? There is no bar for Trump.

    Back to Katy.

  17. Jay (the Canadian one) says:

    So “Chained to the Rhythm” is not fluff? I’m obviously missing its subtext.

  18. uvvc says:

    Why does this woman hate her hair so much? The sh!t those poor follicles have been through…

    Oh, and that green/platinum blonde looks awful on her.

  19. Mia LeTendre says:

    I’m trying to find the shade.

  20. susiecue says:

    Just me? Or does the nose ring on the cover look weird and photoshopped on?

  21. perplexed says:

    She doesn’t mention Taylor Swift’s name at all, so she could be talking about any number of people, I guess. Heck, she could be talking about Tom Brady (and probably not even). She’s making a general observation.

    Got excited for nothing.

  22. Sunshine says:

    So to counteract Taylor being all about Taylor, you insert her name into something that she wasn’t mentioned in at all?
    YOU are making it about Taylor Swift, because Katy said a statement that could’ve applied to anyone, and your immediate thought was “Taylor Swift”.
    and then you made a misleading title.

    acting in a casual or disrespectful manner towards someone/dissing a friend”

  23. Oliviajoy says:

    I can’t stand Katy or Taylor. Regardless of how they feel about politics, backstabbing, Kanye West, or anything else for that matter, they need to find something else to talk or sing about these days. I’m sick of hearing about either of them.

  24. MI6 says:

    🐍 uses the feminism label like she uses guys – only when it’s convenient for her and tosses it/them away when she’s done.
    Well done, Katy Petty. Touche.👍

  25. Anna says:

    I’m so tired of this “we were in a false utopia” b.s. in particular from white folks. Black folks and generally people of color and anyone with any kind of disadvantage (from not being wealthy white man)–we were not in a false utopia. We were glad to finally have a president–#44 Obama–who was genius smart, setting precedent with women and girl-friendly laws, and changing things for the better in this country. We knew–and nearly 100% of Black women knew–that the current admin would be disastrous for everyone’s future, but white supremacy and misogyny won out over that. So, no, I’m sorry, Katie Perry. *You* may have been in a false utopia, but Black folks in particular did not need this horror to take over in order to awakened out a “utopia” because regardless of the brief 8 years of Obama’s presidency, things had not improved in any substantial way for Black folk, people of color, undocumented, etc etc. No. I am sick of people regurgitating this nonsense.