In just a couple weeks, we will approach the three-year anniversary of the time, at the height of their beef, that Katy Perry unsubtly called Taylor Swift a “Regina George in sheep’s clothing” in a tweet referencing Mean Girls’ evil icon to characterize Swift as a villain. And what could possibly be more Regina George than attempting to one-up your competitor’s Mean Girls reference? While Taylor’s new song “Look What You Made Me Do” takes sharp aim at Kanye West, it leaves plenty of room for her other famous frenemy to suffer a few hits. Released on the same day Perry dropped the non-slanderous visuals for her own Taylor diss, “Swish Swish,” Taylor’s song finally responds to Katy’s Mean Girls shade with some of her own:
I’ve got a list of names and yours is in red, underlined
I check it once, then I check it twice, oh!
The idea of a kill list will draw tons of Arya Stark comparisons, but Mean Girls enthusiasts should recall a different inspiration: the scene where Regina George, in a fit of rage over Cady’s (hint hint) deception, scribbles a nasty takedown of herself in the Plastics’ Burn Book, written — you guessed it — in red, and underlines the words “fugly slut!” We wouldn’t put it past Taylor to have a hit list stored somewhere, but a diary with Katy Perry’s name, face, and scalding-hot tea about her plastered all over it with not a single fingerprint to trace it back to Taylor seems much more up her alley. (Later in the song, Taylor also sings “locked me out and threw a feast” in a possible reference to Perry’s “Bon Appétit,” and her attempt to take Taylor’s crown.)
And using a true Regina George battle tactic, “Look What You Made Me Do” also samples Peaches’ “Operate,” the same song used throughout the Halloween-party scene in Mean Girls. Yep, the one where Regina plants a lie about Cady to her crush (and Regina’s ex) Aaron Samuels to take his attention off Cady and back to her, then traps him into kissing her in front of Cady. If it hisses like a snake, well …
None of this is exactly fetch, but Taylor made it happen.