She may have last been spotted filming a music video in a London kebab shop, but Taylor Swift isn't quite ready to publicly re-embrace "down-to-earth Taylor", aka "the old Taylor", just yet.
Instead, she's delivered yet another elaborate, big-budget visual spectacle that positions her as an uber-glam pop behemoth, following on the heels of August's Look What You Made Me Do.
But while that video excavated her own career history for visual kicks, the new clip for her second single ...Ready for It? (annoying ellipsis included) has looked to classic science-fiction for inspiration.
Or – if we're being mean – the films and television shows Swift and her perpetually showy directorial collaborator Joseph Kahn have seen lately.
Here are all the visual references we've spotted so far...
The opening of the ...Ready for It? video is very Blade Runner – specifically the colourful flickering of Swift's eyes. In Blade Runner, this is used to indicate whether a character is a robot, and like Harrison Ford's maybe-replicant in the original film, it's revealed at the end of the video that the Swift we first encounter is a robot herself.
The Japanese aesthetic seen in the background of the opening hallway is also lifted straight from the Ridley Scott masterpiece, which incorporated visual elements of Tokyo when building the world of futuristic Los Angeles.
That the Japanese writing translates as both "Joseph" (as in director Joseph Kahn) and "Year of the Snake" (a reference to Swift's recent embracing of the snake imagery this era) are more Swift-specific references.
Ghost in the Shell
The skin-tight body suit that one of the Swifts sports throughout the video is its most obvious movie reference – looking uncannily like the "thermoptic" suit worn by the protagonist of the 1995 manga Ghost in the Shell. Or, for less discerning viewers, the Scarlett Johansson flop from earlier this year. Designed to camouflage its wearer into any background, it could work as a metaphor for Swift's reptilian ways.
That Swift was exploring the film as a visual reference somewhat inevitably led to jokes earlier this week, specifically that Scarlett Johansson's racially controversial live-action adaptation suddenly ranks second in the whitest things to ever happen to Ghost in the Shell.
The video's premise, about a imprisoned female robot eager to break out and overpower her captors, has already been speculated to be a metaphor for how Swift sees her relationship with the media, but it could also just be an overt reference to the cult sci-fi thriller Ex Machina. That movie saw Alicia Vikander play a robot dressed in a similar white outfit, who is secretly plotting to escape from under the thumb of her creators.
By the time Swift is bathed in blue light and begins floating into the air, Kahn has fully embraced the neon aesthetics of Tron and its 2010 sequel Tron: Legacy. The lit-up shapes decorating Swift's body-suit also appear like a direct reference to the outfits in the film.
Then again, there's something about Swift's pose when she ascends into full power mode that looks uncannily like one of the transformations so often seen in the classic manga series Sailor Moon. Kahn did tease on Twitter earlier this week that the ...Ready for It? video would partly be an homage to anime, so it makes sense.
While we still don't know when and where the video was filmed, certain shots give the impression that it was at least partly filmed at California's Hawthorne Mall, an abandoned shopping centre which has served as a filming location for an array of productions including Gone Girl, Rush Hour and (dun dun dun) robot drama Westworld – which surely couldn't have been a coincidence?
But with the robot's scaly back and sharpened head-mask, along with the slithering creature crawling over the other Swift's face shortly before this set piece, it feels more like a nod to Species, the erotic sci-fi thriller from 1995 about a horrifying alien disguised in the body of an underwear model.
X-Men, Carrie, Stranger Things, et al
By the time robo-Swift explodes in a beam of light and eviscerates everyone around her, she has embraced the visuals of every "vengeful wronged woman" in pop culture, from Phoenix in the X-Men, to Carrie White at the prom, to Eleven blowing up the Demogorgon at the very end of the first season of Stranger Things.
And if the individuals holding Swift captive are meant as a metaphor for her seemingly endless list of detractors, then we should probably get used to Swift exorcising her angst by killing everyone off in her videos. It's going to be a long campaign...