Taylor Swift offers her bullied fans an empowering message in the music video for "Mean," which premiered on CMT Friday night (May 6). The Declan Whitebloom-directed clip for the "Speak Now" single blends universal tales of getting picked on with a colorful theater show starring the country singer.
The video opens with Swift strumming a banjo in front of her backing band, who inhabit a lush stage setup resembling a farmhouse and begins playing alongside her. The jamboree offsets the painful tales of bullying: a well-dressed boy is prodded in a locker room by the football team, a female fast-food worker is victimized by a group of high schoolers, and a girl is shunned by the popular crowd and forced to eat lunch in the bathroom.
All of the stories are resolved at the clip's end, with the first two teens landing their dream jobs and the unpopular girl happily watching the star Swift has become on stage. "Someday, I'll be big enough so you can't hit me/And all you're ever gonna be is mean," Swift sings while dressed in a glamorous flapper getup.
Swift certainly proved the haters wrong at the ACM Awards last month, in which her performance of "Mean" was followed by a surprise Entertainer of the Year win for the 21-year-old. "Mean," the third single from third album "Speak Now," is at No. 54 on this week's Hot 100.