2023 was a huge year for Taylor Swift. Between embarking on her biggest tour yet, releasing two albums and a concert film, breaking numerous records, and becoming Time’s Person of the Year, this past year leaves fans wondering what Swift can do to top 2023. What’s next for Taylor Swift? Well some fans have an idea…
For the past few years, Taylor Swift has been in the process of reclaiming some of her early work; specifically, her first six studio albums. With four “Taylor’s Version” re-recordings complete, fans (often referred to as "Swifties") have been speculating which of the two remaining albums will be released next. Swifties love to hunt for hints, planted by Swift herself, and create theories on what’s coming next. The current consensus, and one that I strongly agree with, is that Swift is about to reclaim her sixth studio album, reputation.
reputation was originally released on November 10, 2017 and marked a huge turn in Swift’s career. Before the album’s conception, controversy surrounded Swift as she faced backlash and criticism from the media and other prominent public figures. This directly influenced Swift’s career and personal life, and reputation is a direct response to the scrutiny she faced. In an interview with Time Magazine in 2023, Swift recalls the era, stating “It’s a goth-punk moment of female rage at being gaslit by an entire social structure.”
When creating the album, Swift decided it was best to thematically split the record into two sides: one about drama and revenge, as seen with tracks like “Look What You Made Me Do” and “I Did Something Bad;” and the other about love, as seen with tracks like “Gorgeous” and “Dress”. During an interview with Rolling Stone in 2019, Swift stated “[t]he one-two punch, bait-and-switch of reputation is that it was actually a love story amongst chaos.” In a way, Swift was showing us a new side of herself while still allowing that beloved, distinctive side to shine through.
This album played a huge role in Taylor Swift’s career. Swifties, myself included, are anxiously awaiting Taylor’s Version. I think it’s her most highly-anticipated re- recording yet! Will she make any changes? What will the vault tracks be? Will there be additional features or new music videos? The options are endless and fans know that Taylor Swift has many tricks up her sleeve, even some we haven’t thought of.
There are numerous theories floating around regarding reputation (Taylor’s Version). One that has gained a lot of traction is the “112-Day Theory,” created by TikTok user Nikki King (@nikkiking23). In summary, the creator believes Swift’s final four re-records are being released in a clock-like formation: one album every 112 days. For reference, Speak Now (Taylor’s Version) was released on July 7, 2023 and 1989 (Taylor’s Version) was released on October 27, 2023. According to this theory, the next album is coming in February of 2024. You can watch King’s full theory summary here and scroll through her feed for more information.
Theories like King's can often be linked to Easter eggs left by Swift. An excellent example of this is a screenshot from Swift’s “Karma” music video that shows a clock with a blue nail (for 1989) and a black nail (for reputation). The 1989 nails aligns with the number eight, coinciding with the month the album was announced. The other nail aligns with the number two; does this mean we’ll get an announcement in February? Or an album release? This is reputation after all, I don’t think a surprise drop is too far-fetched.
Swift herself has talked about planting Easter eggs in content like music videos, social media posts, and even in her outfits and accessories. Recently, Swift has been seen wearing a lot of reputation-inspired outfits: colors like black and green, snakeskin, and even snake-shaped jewelry. Fans quickly caught on to these patterns, encouraging the idea that reputation (Taylor’s Version) is coming soon.
Swift returns to the stage in just a few short weeks in Tokyo, Japan as The Eras Tour goes international. She’s been quiet on social media recently, taking time to herself during her time off. I’m interested to see if she makes any changes to the upcoming shows, especially ones that coincide with fan theories. I guess we’ll have to keep an eye out; but I think it’s safe to say that the announcement and release of reputation (Taylor’s Version) is imminent. Are you ready for it?