In keeping with the theme of her most recent album, Taylor Swift’s new Netflix concert special, Taylor Swift Reputation Stadium Tour, opens with a black-and-white retrospective montage featuring some of the many headlines — the good, the bad and the very ugly — that the country-turned-pop star has made over the years. After one reporter announces, “Taylor Swift is in hot water again” and another whines, “She holds too many grudges,” the word “reputation” begins to repeat as the woman at the center of it all takes the stage.
Swift, 29, arrives at the AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, in a sparkly black leotard with a hood over her head. She looks tinier than ever as she stands before a pair of larger-than-life video screens on a grandiose stage with four massive catwalks shaped like an X. Without much pomp and circumstance, the growl from the beginning of “…Ready for It?” kicks in after Swift utters the first lyric and strikes a pose, driving the sold-out crowd of 60,000 fans wild.
Early on, the 10-time Grammy winner exudes confidence and attitude. She makes sure to ramp up the dramatics by slowing down the opening lines of “I Did Something Bad.” And when she’s joined by a group of all-female backup singers, Swift stares directly into the camera before launching into a choreographed routine, backed by fireworks so massive that the heat practically radiates through the TV screens of viewers at home.