Katy Perry’s Swish Swish video: six minutes you’ll never get back

Full disclosure, I didn’t mind Katy Perry’s song Swish Swish Bish so much when I first listened to it. As it was her long-awaited response to Taylor Swift’s Bad Blood, I found it tame, yes, but also fine. Katy released the video for the song yesterday. I never got the basketball references in the song and the video did nothing to clear that up. It includes notable actors like Molly Shannon and Gaten Matarazzo from Stranger Things in bizarre roles. I don’t even want to talk about her desecration of my beloved Terry Crews.

The video is a heaping spoonful of WTF? Part of that is by design, we are supposed to see Katy and her team of misfits struggling with their game. But truthfully, they’re struggling with everything – acting, emoting, humor, irreverence – you name it. The set up is that the Tiger’s, which is Katy’s team because “I am the eye of the tiger” and all that, are bumbling nincompoops who inexplicably float in the air, eat basketballs and drink from curved straws. The opposing team is the Sheep, but the mascot is a wolf wearing a sheep’s skin. Kaiser helped me remember this:

So clearly this is going to be a nuanced and shrewd use of satire, right? Okay, let’s do this. I’ve listed a few thoughts I had will watching this below. Feel free to do the same:

Some thoughts while I watched this:

0:13 – Okay, that ball pyramid thing was really funny. Maybe all my predictions were wrong?

0:18 – Nope

0:25 – Is calling the “game” unwatchable self-deprecating or a warning?

0:44 – I’m probably supposed to know who all these people are. I can’t imagine that would make this better for me

1:39 – These boogying umpires should be the whole video

2:04 – Why did that woman eat the basketball? What earthly reason would make someone eat a basketball?

2:11 – Aw, now I’m just nostalgic for Space Jam. And I hated Space Jam

2:26 – At least Gronk looks hot

2:35 – Holy crap, Kaiser was right, Doug the Pug really is a famewhore

2:40 – Oh yeah, Just Dance 2018 is coming out. Whee!

2:56 – What in the holy hell is she doing?

3:00 – Normally, I would find the armpit thing gross, presently I see it as a way out

3:01- Is “Swish Swish Bish” a question? Can my answer be “no”?

3: 47 – Christ, I have never been so happy to see Nicki Minaj in all my life

4:07 – *whispers* thank you for being here, Nicki

4:26 – Dancers in formation, I’m actually watching a proper video now

4:43 – “Get it together, Katy” – Preach, Nicki!

4:52 – Wait – we’re they going? Nicki – COME BACK!

5:04 – Did they get the CGI animators from the first Jumanji for this thing?

5:20 – What’s with their sweat obsession?

5:32 – Jaysus, the wire work is actually worse than the CGI

5:41 – Is that Matt Lauer in a Katy Perry wig?

5:42 – So it was all a lie? Yay team!

5:48 – What a f—king waste of Terry Crews

5:49 – What a f—king waste of Molly Shannon

6:07 – Katy’s poor execution of The Worm is my punishment for watching her video. I get it. I deserved that

Firstly, any and all references to The Harlem Globetrotters MUST STOP. The Globetrotters have given us decades of entertainment and do not deserve to have their good name sullied with this mess. I get this was super meme-rific and a shout-out to You Tube stars. Maybe when my kids get home, they can explain to me what I just saw. But even without appreciating how “clever” it thinks itself, the humor in being bumbling is not to force it. With the exception of the opening pyramid shot – which was great – Katy and Ko. broadcast their impending prat falls via bullhorn. I know it’s a lot to expect subtlety from the woman who shot sparklers from her bra but she’d hyped this thing so much, it almost broke Twitter yesterday.

Speaking of Twitter, all the katycats were out in full force squealing over this video’s brilliance. I spent hours trolling for some funny tweets to include here but the pickings were slim. I know they’ll turn up eventually but I needed a palate cleanser. The good news for Taylor fans is she could fart in a bag for her next video and probably be able to call it a win over this.

This one speaks for me:

Note by Kaiser: This video is the worst & I’m so disappointed in Katy, especially because she totally ruined any goodwill. Now bish is being eclipsed by Taylor’s Mean Girl Snake anthem.





Photo credit: Twitter and WENN Photos

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57 Responses to “Katy Perry’s Swish Swish video: six minutes you’ll never get back”

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  1. Nicole says:

    This video is terrible. Taylor song is terrible. Both of them need to go back to the drawing board

    • Nanny to the Rescue says:

      But the question is: Which one is worse and who will, even with a bad product, win this petty battle (the war’s far from over, tho)? Because they didn’t release this on the same time by accident.

      • Nicole says:

        I need taylors video for comparison. Right now song wise swish swish is slightly better. And that’s not saying a lot

      • Nanny to the Rescue says:

        I meant it more in a “who will win the media’s attention today” kind of way.

        I haven’t watched this video nor listened to Taylor’s song yet to form an opinion. I’m just here enjoying my popcorn.

      • Nicole says:

        Oh Taylor. But she has a team to make that happen. So it’s not surprising

      • Nanny to the Rescue says:

        Doesn’t Katy have a team also? She’s a successful artist, surely she’s not alone.

        BTW, did Katy tell in advance she’s releasing the video today or did it just happen? I’m trying to figure out who had the date first and who tried to usurp it. Taylor only told “us” about this a couple of days ago. Was Katy first?

        I wonder if they’re fuming about each other at home in their fancy houses and bad hairdos.

      • Nicole says:

        I’m not into KP so I don’t know. I would have to look back. I mean Taylor’s was a surprise so its probably her being petty.
        Also Taylor has one of the best well crafted images in the business. Her people are top rate. Some celebs have the better crafted teams

      • Nanny to the Rescue says:

        Found the timeline: Katy said on Monday she’s releasing the video this week. Taylor said on Tuesday that she is releasing her song at midnight on Thursday. Both wanted the product out just before the VMAs.

        So Katy was first, but with no precise date, Taylor was a day later but with exact date, then Katy released the video a few hours before Taylor’s schedule.

      • Marianne says:

        It will be Taylor. I am barely seeing anyone talking about Katy Perry’s video and yet People already has like 5 articles on Taylor’s song.

      • Miles says:

        Well Taylor’s song is selling like crazy. She has a 94% lead over the second best selling song. I wouldn’t be shocked if Taylor’s sells more in one day than Katy’s total. And not because Taylor has the better song but Taylor Swift is the bigger brand so when it comes to public perception and popularity she’s going to win

    • loveotterly says:

      I hate it too but I guess she knows her demographic. I would be comfortable with my kids watching this, and let’s face it 12 year olds are the only people who buy Perry songs.

    • JennatheMuff says:

      Glad I watched this and LOL’d 20 times before reading your take! Are we too serious in our pop culture right now for campy slapstick? In the pending doomsday that is 2017 I found this to be exactly what I needed

  2. Word says:

    Katy is a talentless hack. END

    • SNAP says:

      This! The title sounds like she is promoting tooth brushing …swish swish..wtf?…lol…maybe she should had tried the oral hygiene theme for her stupid video…since videos rarely ever go with the lyrics. It may had been better received and made more sense…

      • Olive says:

        “Swish” is a basketball slang term – it’s supposed to be the sound of the ball going through the net.

  3. Lindy79 says:

    Its that The Mountain from Got???

    That’s all I have

  4. Susanne says:

    Hecate, your blow by blow description is everything! I feel no need to ruin it by watching the video. Perfect solution! I will find another way to waste that hat 6 minutes, tyvm.

    • Cannibell says:

      This. Thank you, Hecate, for taking one for the team. Also, this whole Tay/Katy video mess sounds like some kind of music video race to the bottom.

  5. magnoliarose says:

    Nicki helps but the whole feel of this is dated but not in an ironic throwback way or anything. Just old and tired. Everything is just bad.

    ETA Haven’t we moved beyond finding a heavy person eating all of the time funny?

    • Kitten says:

      “Haven’t we moved beyond finding a heavy person eating all of the time funny?”

      This was my first thought exactly. The video was lame. No idea what the song is like because I listened with sound off.

      Nicki looked SMOKIN’ hot.

      • NotSoSocialButterfly says:

        Nicki was the only redeeming aspect this video.

      • still_sarah says:

        I had the sound off too until Nicki Minaj came on. I love her in everything she does. Then I kept the sound on. It wasn’t much of a treat. KP sings very softly, like sing-whispering. It was nothing like how she sang on “Wide Awake” where she actually used her voice.

  6. diana says:

    This is so bad and I was kinda pulling for her.

  7. Savasana Lotus says:

    All I know is Katy on SNL and her performances on that episode were beyond bad. Just painful to hear and that made what you were watching pathetic. I think this pony pulled the last trick from her bag several years back. Taylors song is just…I don’t know…meh. But, she still sounds great and the girl can write.

    • manda says:

      yes! I was just thinking the same thing re: katy! The SNL performance was painful to watch, I was embarrassed for her.

      And this is crazy, but I think it’s her new hair. It really doesn’t help

      I have not checked out taylor’s new song because I care even less for her. I’m sure it’ll be on somewhere sometime soon

    • Erinn says:

      Watch her video with Neil DeGrasse Tyson. If you can. I genuinely had to turn it off SO fast… I was having some of the worst second hand embarassment I’ve ever experienced.

      She’s just SO unintelligent. But she tries SO hard to be cool that it just comes off as sad. It’s like she’s like a mother of teenaged kids who only picks up and starts using the references once they’re on the decline.

      It’s like “hmm. What’s popular with the young guys now? Memes! Neil deGrasse Tyson! STRANGER THINGS!” She just seems like she’s late to the party for so many things… and the dis track wasn’t even clever. I’d have loved something that was hilariously dishy… but it just kind of was sad. But late to the party seems to be what she’s doing now… she could make great money from american idol… though it’s not like that’s going to somehow bring her career back to what it was before. American Idol is such old news.

      I don’t like Katy. It’s more based on how much of an idiot she is, how she’s made insensitive comments about people with mental illness, appropriated so many cultures, called the weeknd’s producer an n-word… the list goes on and on of her stupid comments. I will say she’s had some incredibly catchy songs… but it’s been about 7 years since California Girls came out.

      She does some great stuff, and I think a lot of the time she probably doesn’t REALIZE she’s being an idiot. But she just really doesn’t seem bright. I’m glad that she’s taken an interest in the political world – maybe she should throw herself into some kind of charity work and take a bit of a break to kind of reset. I think the more exposure she gets to the world, and the things that normal people, or people who are struggling feel and live, the better.

      • Kitten says:

        Agree with every word, Erinn.

      • greenmonster says:

        She is even late with her comeback at Swift. This song is as if you have a “clever” response 2 hours after a fight with someone and you call that person to throw it at them. Just that Katy’s comeback is neither clever or good.

      • Tiffany :) says:

        ” she’s had some incredibly catchy songs… but it’s been about 7 years since California Girls came out.”

        Her music career from the very beginning was built on Dr. Luke’s production and writing staff. Without him, it is pretty clear how weak she is. I hate Dr. Luke for Kesha reasons, but I do think he has a lot of skills when it comes to creating commercial pop.

  8. Beth says:

    I didn’t watch the video, but the name of the song is ridiculous. People like Katy, Taylor, Tiffany, and Debbie Gibson, are why I’ve always hated pop music. Cheesy

  9. cleveland girl says:

    What the actual f*ck did I just watch???

  10. Honey says:

    WTF?! That was tragically stupid

  11. Div says:

    It is a bit funny that Katy’s song and Taylor’s song are both terrible. Both need to go back to their old sounds imo. I usually prefer Katy’s music to Taylor’s but in this case Taylor (barely) wins.

    • milla says:

      It makes me sad. For the first time ever, women get more music time. And you end up with perry swifty rihanna and other girls who really deserve awards for their pr. But thats not music, thats not art

  12. Adrien says:

    She out-Susan Powtered Susan Powter in the video.

  13. 76May says:

    The song is absolutely horrible. Who has time to listen to that crap?

  14. Mike says:

    I don’t even have to listen to know it is terrible, because Katy is terrible. At least Swifty puts out a decent tune every once in awhile.

  15. UmYeah says:

    I feel like Katy only makes music and videos for 13 year olds.

  16. Maria says:

    Why did they include the heavier girl in the video? I feel like that was just a mockery like bigger people are added in videos to be props of ridicule now or something, like when Miley had little people in hers, I felt it was some kind of circus like Freaks thing, or is it to make the “stars” look better? Idk but it leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
    The song is atrocious btw.

  17. Chaine says:

    No, not six minutes, because I only made it through about two minutes, twenty seconds before I ditched it.

  18. Nanny to the Rescue says:

    OK, now I watched it. What the heck is Hair Jordan supposed to represent?

    And yea, it’s all extra cringeworthy until Nicky pops in and brings some class into the whole mess. Nicky Effing Minaj brings class in this case (it’s like a whole different video), that’s how bad the rest is.


  19. Dinah says:

    I’m a fan of Dodgeball the Movie, so I find this video to be quite funny. The takehome message is to “get your shit together”, despite being the underdog, I think?

  20. CK3 says:

    I like the cameo from the cast of Glow and Nicki’s segment. The rest is terrible.

    • still_sarah says:

      I just kept watching it and thinking “Is there any point to this?” – the lyrics, the characters, anything in the video at all? It looked like just a lot of disjointed stuff thrown together. It was a mess.

  21. Happy21 says:

    I couldn’t even get to the Nicky part. That was plain terrible. I think she wishes she was funny and humorous like Pink is funny because all I see is a wannabe Pink video.
    I guess if we’re supposed to think that she and Taylor are battling for the better song, I’m going to have to go with Taylor. Swish Swish is plain awful even before I watched a minute and a half of the video.

  22. ChasingAdalia says:

    Am I the only one that thought the video was hilarious?


    I got to see her do this song live last month, and it gets catchy and jumpy after a while. Maybe that’s why I like it. Never underestimate the power of live music. I had to turn the TSwift video off earlier because it was just such crap and the lyrics were a little frightening.

    • JennatheMuff says:

      No you aren’t the only one. It is hilarious. Every time I watch this I find new meme references and it gets better and better. It’s the kind of video that isn’t made for a hot take, you gotta let it simmer and watch it a few times to appreciate it.

  23. Jayna says:

    That song is an average club song that’s got a beat, though, and should have had dancers to drive it, to make it a better song than it is, by giving the music video rhythm and also putting in some great visuals to feed into the mood of the song, not this goofy distraction of a video. Fail.

  24. Ana says:

    Is it me or Katy Perry’s voice has gotten worse with time (it was never good to begin with, but…). She sounds so deflated.

    • ChasingAdalia says:

      Dollars to donuts it’s the way it’s produced. She sounded great last month in person.

  25. MSat says:

    I actually cringed when trying to watch this. It’s just… so bad. What the hell is she thinking? Also – has Katy just stepped into the exact persona that Miley Cyrus just shed? Short bleached hair, crazy outfits, rappers in every song… only thing that is missing is the giant doobie from Miley’s stage show.

    Girl, no.