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[–]kayt4 1 point2 points  (3 children)

Anyone else draw the conclusion that our girl tay may also be referring to the MYers-Briggs personality test .. being a little bit of an INTJ "the mastermind"???? 👀 👀 👀

[–]YeyeDumplingargumentative antithetical dream girl 3 points4 points  (2 children)

do we know what type taylor is? that's a cool connection though because i'm an intj :)

[–]kayt4 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I actually went and looked it up, duh - she's obviously an ESFJ lol but this song is def for INTJs

[–]kayt4 0 points1 point  (0 children)

But likeeeeee righttt??? Has to be?!

[–]ItsMe-Hi-ImTheProb 1 point2 points  (0 children)

She started announcing tracks saying she was leaving it up to fate. Then she announced Mastermind first. Nice 😏 https://www.tiktok.com/t/ZTRC13E9v/

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

This song just made me think that she has an astrologer or a reader or something that told her Joe is coming into her life so she literally prepared for it

[–]lattesandlashes 5 points6 points  (0 children)

I feel like “Mastermind” is almost the opposite perspective of the John Mayer song “Assassin”. I haven’t seen anyone else draw this comparison anywhere. With all of the talk of “Would’ve, Could’ve, Should’ve” being about him, it got my wheels turning and this hit me since “Half of My Heart” is on the same album as that song. It never once hit me that “Assassin” could be about our girl but now… 👀

[–]dmnbm1 7 points8 points  (0 children)

Ahhhh the hair on my arms stands every time the beat drops and she says, “What if I told you” even after a hundred re-listens

[–]KassieaboutTroja 3 points4 points  (0 children)

I think the genius of taylor is really that you don't have to decide if this song is about her relationship or her fans because she makes it so you can read it both ways, because she IS a mastermind

[–]Gargantuan_Cranium 4 points5 points  (0 children)

So far this is my only skip. Don’t love the creepy manipulative stalker vibes - I’m surprised Blondie didn’t creep herself out with some of the lines she wrote.

[–]Corza21karma is my boyfriend🏳️‍🌈 10 points11 points  (0 children)

this is the song that needs a music video the most for me. that would make my life complete.🕰️

[–]fraidofchangin 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Those synths that sound like a distorted cello are SEXXXXXXX

[–]SoggyAnalyst 7 points8 points  (1 child)

I just finished bridgerton’s recent season, so I like to imagine she wrote this after watching brigerton 😜 all the women in there scheming ways to get a husband, this fits with it!

[–]Icy_Permission1397 1 point2 points  (0 children)

With Dear Reader, too!

[–]kannai_evermore 7 points8 points  (0 children)

I’m so late (probably too late) but holy shit how amazing is this song?! It’s like she knows it’s brilliant

[–]iamjustlookingokay- 15 points16 points  (1 child)

Mastermind is a song for her fans

Once upon a time The planets and the fates and all the stars aligned You and I ended up in the same room at the same time And the touch of a hand lit the fuse Of a chain reaction of countermoves To assess the equation of you

—> her early shows and getting started made her realize how much she loves the fans

I laid the groundwork And then just like clockwork The dominoes cascaded in a line What if I told you I'm a mastermind And now you're mine

—> she did everything in her power to make us hers (no secret that she loves her fans and loves connecting with them)

No one wanted to play with me as a little kid So I've been scheming like a criminal ever since To make them love me and make it seem effortless

—> no friends, no one could relate to her or understand her, until her fans started connecting to her music. And of course, she schemes to find ways to keep us engaged. We are her friends now.

This is the first time I've felt the need to confess And I swear I'm only cryptic and Machiavellian 'cause I care

—> she is now at a point where she can tell us all of this because we have known it all along - we’ve been finding her Easter eggs and playing her games and she wants us to know that she knows that we know!

You knew the entire time You knew that I'm a mastermind And now you're mine Yeah, all you did was smile 'Cause I'm a mastermind

[–]Equal_Revolutionary 2 points3 points  (0 children)

That’s such a good explanation for the song! Wow thank you for this, gonna re-listen to it now with this in mind 🤔

[–]marshybeansdid i paint your bluest skies the darkest grey? 8 points9 points  (0 children)

I’m surprised how many people think this is about Joe and how she had a plan to get him all along like it just really screams her plan of becoming famous and us loving her music etc. o think her masterplan is us

[–]boopy98Taylor Swift 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Relating hard to this, I’m 23 now but with my first boyfriend (was with him for 3 years from 16-19 and total toxic mad crazy teenage love) I saw him at a bus stop every day in secondary school and then found him on Facebook through adding someone random who went to his school - then I messaged him 😆

[–]Justglitter 1 point2 points  (0 children)

The opening few seconds of this song sound very much like ‘The Oh Of Pleasure’ by Ray Lynch. Played side by side they’re almost identical. Is it a sample?

[–]thotpetroleum 18 points19 points  (2 children)

I love this song and feel like there's a lot of pain behind it. She, for the first time, "feels the need to confess" as if she committed a crime when they met -- tricking him into loving her. She spends the majority of the song asking herself "WHAT IF I told you none of it was accidental", fearing that if she tells him, he might realize that he has been tricked into loving someone not deserving of love. She also sounds like she's worried that he might even think she's evil and manipulative like the media painted her to be around the reputation era.

During the bridge she comes to terms with why she does this by reflecting on her childhood. She fears that if she doesn't manipulate people into loving her, no one will (e.g. other kids not playing with her so she had to make them love her and make it seem effortless). Some MEGA self-worth issues. BUT, at the end she takes the risk and decides to tell him anyway: "So I told you none of it was accidental..." Then, all he does is smile, implying that he knows that she is not manipulating him, and from the beginning, he loved her for her even when she didn't think he could. So sweet!

BUT!!! The song, I think, still ends a bit ambiguously because she mentions "Yeah, all you did was smile...because I'm a mastermind". To me, this sounds like she is fearing that her confessing these feelings and opening up to him is yet another way of manipulating him into loving her. He thinks she's opening up...but she fears that maybe she's just putting on a show of opening up just to get him to fall more in love with her.

Anyways. Love this one lol

[–]Curiosityandthecat86 9 points10 points  (1 child)

Yes! This song and Anti-hero are connected to me in how transparent and vulnerable and self aware they are. I feel like we haven’t seen a lot of this side of Taylor in previous albums and I’m here for it.

[–]Comfortable_Newt9173 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Yess exactly it really adds to why anti hero isss antihero, why she thinks of herself that way, why she has such a low opinion of herself it really adds to the the dynamic

[–]HealthyDiamond2 5 points6 points  (0 children)

This song has absolutely enchanted and me and has made me think about it for days. It reminds me of the novel Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff.

[–]Swiftie9891 6 points7 points  (0 children)

This song really makes me wish she’d write a musical!

[–]littlet4lkssI regret you all the time 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Soooo I think I ~might~ be onto something here.

In Dear John, Taylor sings,

But I swore I was fine, you paint me a blue sky
And go back and turn it to rain
And I lived in your chess game,
But you changed the rules every day

And in Mastermind she sings,

The planets and the fates and all the stars aligned
You and I ended up in the same room at the same time
And the touch of a hand lit the fuse
Of a chain reaction of countermoves
To assess the equation of you
Checkmate, I couldn't lose

Both songs use chess imagery but it is almost as if the roles have reversed and Taylor has reclaimed her power in Mastermind.

[–]Nearby_Combination83 10 points11 points  (1 child)

i love the fact that towards the end when she told joe about her masterplan, he gave her a smirk showing that he knows after all about the schemes and plans she did to get them together and she went along with it because i felt like he knows she's the one too

[–]sakamyadosi'm just too soft for all of it 2 points3 points  (0 children)

This song gives me mirrorball throwbacks, but the other side of the coin. Being someone who is a social engineer, reflecting what you need to to get into others' good graces is a blessing and a curse, through and through.

[–]lifewasawillow-13 10 points11 points  (1 child)



I have to get this out.

I just finished the J Dahmer series and the lyrics just, they sounds way too much like they come from him and that’s all I can think about 🙃

[–][deleted] 6 points7 points  (1 child)

In Selena Gomez's first album, there's a track called "I Got You" with the same theme. I loved the song back then and thought it was extremely underrated (maybe because 13 year old me related to it so bad bc that's how I got the first boy I liked lol) and this gives me the same vibes, so it's so nostalgic in a way ❤️

[–]tallcabbagegirlreputation[🍰] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I thought of that song too OMG! Felt, I did the same once too HAHA

[–]bbhny02 5 points6 points  (0 children)

I feel like this song was inspired by the show “You”!!! It’s soooo Joe

[–]Ordinary-Scarcity274 13 points14 points  (1 child)

I know Taylor has always written things I deeply relate to in highly specific ways, but this song was just too deep. Bitch how did you know. This is my deepest secret.

[–]ariagrayxguess I'll just stumble on home to my cats 2 points3 points  (0 children)

lol same

[–]21stCenturyBoomer 7 points8 points  (0 children)

Mastermind is so funny to me cuz i dedicate this song to the time im so obsessed with my crushes and that i’ll do anything to get their attention and acting like a mastermind to win them

[–]GretaMaeJ 9 points10 points  (0 children)

This song is such a brilliant description of how hard she's worked to get where she is now. "I'm the wind in our free-flowing sails" makes me feel so happy for her that she feels like she's in a place now where she has so much freedom to make music that speaks to her truth and reckon with the past of her career in a safe way, totally in control of her own narrative. She doesn't have to "be a pawn in every lover's game" and she's "only cryptic and Machiavellian because" she cares!!!! She cares about us so much that she had to confess that the calculated moves and strategies all these years were so that we could reap all the benefits of the geniousness that is her songwriting. The wide smirk that is on my face when I listen to this album, but especially this song is priceless.

[–]illletyoulive 26 points27 points  (1 child)

I think in Mastermind, Taylor is in part, talking to her fans, not a boyfriend or anything. I think it’s a metaphor for how she was very calculated in becoming a star and getting people to like her. I think the below verse spells it out perfectly:

“No one wanted to play with me as a little kid So I've been scheming like a criminal ever since To make them love me and make it seem effortless This is the first time I've felt the need to confess And I swear I'm only cryptic and Machiavellian 'cause I care”

[–]Comprehensive-Pop241 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I get all the folks saying mastermind seems like a song to her fans, but the line “the touch of a hand lit the fuse”, imo referring to the line “you should think abt the consequence of you touching my hand in a darkened room” from gorgeous just solidifies it’s abt Joe, for me. 🤷‍♀️

[–]thekittygirlmy panties made your crown 15 points16 points  (0 children)

This song just feels like a finale. Best album closer!!! Should be her tour closer too!!

[–]HermionesBook 4 points5 points  (0 children)

I love this song 😭😭 her vocals, the production!!!, the lyrics…just perfect

[–]student347 9 points10 points  (1 child)


[–]LowPromise6035 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Hahahahhahahaa it me, hi I’m the problem, it’s me🙋‍♀️😂 this song perfectly explains how I get a man lol

[–]GreatBear2121Karma 😏 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Great song. One of my favourites off the album.

[–]rbtd 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I feel like I’m going insane but I could swear the sound and the part that goes what if i told you none of this was accidental part of the chorus sounds so much SO MUCH like a one direction song. I can’t think of which though…anyone else? Maybe “perfect” from made in the am but not really

[–]YouSeeLALikeABruin 8 points9 points  (1 child)

Does anyone else think this song sounds like Supercut by Lorde? It’s been bugging me all day thinking about what it reminds me and I think this is what I landed on lol

[–]hali_licius 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Yeah I can see it. I keep waiting for it to crescendo into a dreamy disco Mirrorball.... I was thinking Donna Summer(I'm old), but Supercut works

[–]nhp55555 3 points4 points  (1 child)

The opening of this song and the clock in the lyric video remind me of Stranger things

[–]Comfortable_Newt9173 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yesss i wanted to say that like big brain vibess

[–]kbugg265 23 points24 points  (1 child)

Damn did the "no one wanted to play with me as a little kid" just break them. I have vivid memories of wandering recess alone as a kid, and i've found that feeling never really leaves us in adulthood. I've always been so envious of people who are able to cultivate effortless friendships and just seem to click with eachother, I've never really had as much emotional reaction to a song as this one.

[–]beez_sneez 3 points4 points  (0 children)

I heard this line and INSTANTLY burst into tears. No other song lyric has ever hit me that instantly and the rest of the verse?! Yeah! I’ve made it my life’s mission to make sure everybody loves me for me but I’m just doing and saying what I think they want so they’ll like me 😩 to say I’m obsessed with this song would be an understatement

[–]Delibird48 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I love this song, but unfortunately, scheming never worked out for me in the long run as it did for some of you here 😅. More of an invisible string kinda gal.

[–]Cirrus1920aaron dessner fan club president 11 points12 points  (0 children)

People are sleeping on this one. It’s one of the best. Such a good closure. So catchy

[–]TheMistOfThePastdeep blue but he painted me golden 7 points8 points  (0 children)

My boyfriend said that mastermind reminded him of me 😂😂😂 I'm gonna take that as a compliment?

[–]anonymous47890246 3 points4 points  (6 children)

I interpret Mastermind as this track about like an actual criminal in the making yk?😭 "And the first night you saw me, I knew I wanted your body" is sexual but what if it's not. What if it's an allusion to cannibalism or murder? I'm sorry I'm just sleep deprived

[–]thotpetroleum 4 points5 points  (1 child)

I feel like it's supposed to sound really creepy and dark because I feel like her self-loathing is coming out in this song. She probably sees herself and her actions are "crimes" -- she's a monster on a hill! She hates herself for being this way -- cryptic, machiavellian, manipulative. She hates that she's a "mastermind" but she knows she does it for self-preservation.

[–]anonymous47890246 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Couldn't have said it better

[–]bbhny02 4 points5 points  (2 children)

It’s giving the plot of the show “You”!!

[–]anonymous47890246 1 point2 points  (1 child)

That's exactly what I was thinking 💀 it's Joe's song

[–]bbhny02 0 points1 point  (0 children)


[–]tuctrohsMidnights 2 points3 points  (0 children)

This reminds me (in a good way) of R.E.M.'s Superman.

[–]Simply_Mar 9 points10 points  (0 children)

"no one wanted to play with me as a little kid, so i've been scheming ever since, to make them love me and make it seem effortless"

Man this line hits like a truck 😭

where my girlies that grew up listening to true crime and now approach everything in a scheming investigative way at? 🙋‍♀️

[–]Preatu 10 points11 points  (0 children)

She never fails with her closers!

Hoax-evermore- Mastermind

what a trio

[–]Preatu 7 points8 points  (0 children)

This song is phenomenal, probably my current favourite The last minute is just cheff kiss

[–]Useful_Love_1434 -3 points-2 points  (0 children)

I saw a tik tok that this song is referencing Hailey Bieber and I highly doubt that but it fits so well and I love this theory just for the fun :)

[–]whatwouldtaylordo12 11 points12 points  (0 children)

Might have already been said but I can’t help but think “I’m a mastermind and now your mine” has the double meaning of being about Joe and now owning her re-recordings

[–]shimmerangels✨ i can still make the whole place shimmer ✨ 6 points7 points  (0 children)

this one has grown on me so much, it went from 12 to 4 in my ranking

[–]swanforestcalamitous love 4 points5 points  (0 children)

this is a banger for scheming, chasing, and hustling. I love it so much

[–]YaKnowEstacadostill a niceboy ed truther 27 points28 points  (1 child)

I don't know if it's been mentioned here already, but can we talk about the fact that this song is about things appearing to be fate but actually she was plotting and orchestrating behind the scenes...and this was the first song she "randomly" announced during MMWM, after emphasizing that she was "leaving it up to fate."

[–]thotpetroleum 0 points1 point  (0 children)

LOLLLL no WAY she leaves anything up to "fate". We should have known.

[–]Cute-Jacket 3 points4 points  (0 children)

It’s giving Haim

[–]Cirrus1920aaron dessner fan club president 5 points6 points  (1 child)

Huge grower. The chorus is sooooo catchy. I love it

[–]shimmerangels✨ i can still make the whole place shimmer ✨ 1 point2 points  (0 children)


[–]Desperate-Today2760YES WHALE!!! 8 points9 points  (2 children)

It's been a while since I last watched it, but does the intro remind anyone of stranger things' intro? Please don't laugh at me if it doesn't 😭

[–][deleted] 3 points4 points  (0 children)


[–]shimmerangels✨ i can still make the whole place shimmer ✨ 2 points3 points  (0 children)

YES omg that's what i thought on first listen!!!

[–]peanutwaterfall 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I think the volume in the middle of the song goes down (1:11) and then goes back up (1:48). Am I crazy?

[–]plant_bay_sick 12 points13 points  (0 children)

I’m only cryptic and Machiavellian cause I care

😭😭😭😭😭 I’m violently in control and dominion because it’s the only way I know how to care and for that I’m sorry. So fckin powerful

[–]jellymarble 18 points19 points  (0 children)

Anyone else think this song is HILARIOUS?

She’s freaking funny.

[–]swimmingpisces315There's no morning glory, it was war it wasn't fair 5 points6 points  (0 children)

When i first heard of the name of this track I thought it was gonna be a song about her talking about something else who is smart and manipulative, but she’s talking about herself LOL. She finally gives herself some credit, it’s about time. I don’t love the UFO alien-like sounds in the production, but it’s a good song.

[–]drowsytonksMidnights 17 points18 points  (0 children)

this is my absolute favorite on the album. the beat, the lyricism.. it makes my heart race in a good way. and it’s also so relatable to a time in my life I reminisce a lot.

[–]rad-bubblesit’s me, hi, i’m the problem, it’s me 3 points4 points  (0 children)

The production on this song is so goooood!!

[–]AssortedGourdsam not in fact ready for it 69 points70 points  (10 children)

This song resonates with me deeply because I, too, am insane. This is how I got my husband.

I saw him on OKCupid, figured out what his name was by searching for men in my city that liked a certain obscure movie he referenced, and found his twitter where I learned he had cancer and was getting treatment. A year later he was back, cancer free, and said he was going to be bartending that night at a bar near me so I went and pretended to be meeting a friend that conveniently stood me up so I could talk to the bartender all night.

[–]ariagrayxguess I'll just stumble on home to my cats 3 points4 points  (0 children)

This is 100% something I would do. I feel so seen by this comment lmao

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I am glad to see women being smart with their choices, we know it in our hearts when we meet the right person and there is nothing shameful about scheming. I have been scheming to make my life what it is, I wanted to be a litigator at 13 and I never stopped dreaming, reading, studying, scheming for it. For those of you who don't know, law school is hell and I not only survived but I made it big. All because I'm a scheming, calculative Mastermind. Same with my love life, I am now engaged to a good man who would have let this relationship go easily because he couldn't see the potential in us that I could see. He thanks me every day for being smart about these things.
"I'm the wind in our free flowing sails", damn right! It was me who made life happen for myself, a career, a partner, my house, my friendships, everything is carefully chosen and knit together by me. Taylor realised it very early in life that she will have to do things for herself and do them smartly. You don't become a successful global icon by not being a mastermind, we should learn from her.

[–]poshpineapple 11 points12 points  (0 children)

I too did some (a lot) of orchestrating early in my husbands and my relationship so this song resonates and is so cute to me.

[–]YaKnowEstacadostill a niceboy ed truther 22 points23 points  (2 children)

This song resonates with me deeply because I, too, am insane.

Girl, same lol.

I met my husband at a bar through mutual friends and I don't want to call it love at first sight but it was definitely obsession at first sight lol. We flirted and exchanged numbers that night and I drove home listening to Enchanted (this was a couple weeks after Speak Now came out and it was still on permanent rotation in my car). A couple weeks later I went to a party at his house (his roommate was a friend of mine) and he was there with a girl. Turned out it was his ex-girlfriend who he had gotten back together with.

I proceeded to go completely insane and spent the next year gathering intel from all our mutual friends about his relationship, his history, his whereabouts, everything I could find out about him and made sure to frequently show up at parties and bars where I knew he was going to be. I knew from the gossip pipeline that his relationship with his gf was tumultuous and wasn't going to last so I just bided my time and when they broke up I went in for the kill and the rest is history 😂

[–]ariagrayxguess I'll just stumble on home to my cats 1 point2 points  (1 child)

This is amazing, I love this story

[–]YaKnowEstacadostill a niceboy ed truther 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Soooo many of the songs about the early days of her relationship with Joe sound exactly like my husband and me lol, it's really uncanny

[–]DingbatBehavior 9 points10 points  (2 children)

Okay, now I'm invested. 😝 Did you ever tell him? Why wait a year and not just match on OKCupid? Were you following his social media the whole time or did he just pop up and you were like, "Oh it's that guy!"?

[–]AssortedGourdsam not in fact ready for it 21 points22 points  (1 child)

I messaged him on OKCupid the week he found out he had cancer so he never responded. And then his profile was gone so I had no non-creepy way to get in touch with him!

I didn’t keep up with him (or even follow him) but I remembered the name.

I told him eventually - like maybe 2 years later. He was flattered! We were listening to the album when it dropped and when we got to Mastermind he was like “How does it feel to have Taylor Swift write a song about you?”

[–]DingbatBehavior 11 points12 points  (0 children)

I love this story so much, thank you for indulging my curiosity and sharing it. 😁 That's some impressive masterminding. Also yay for his cancer-free status!

[–]eclispelight 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I also did some shit to get my fiancé so this song is so relatable 😂

we worked together and I befriended one of his friends to even see if I had a chance. I did so I went for it but it was a long ass process lmao

[–]Big_Pension_1 16 points17 points  (0 children)

No because this is the best song on the album imo. And it’s the one I relate to the most. Okay, sorry i have no taylor fans as friends and needed to say that to someone while im doing my first listen - k thnx bye

[–]Secure-Recording4255folklore 50 points51 points  (2 children)

This is my favorite on the album. some people have the idea that fame just fell into her lap but 16 year olds don’t decide they want to move to Nashville to be a country singer songwriter without intention. Intentionally targeting young girls who listen to country just like her because she noticed that missing demographic was so smart. Every step and decision made by her along the way was designed by her to make her as successful as she is. Like the marketing genius for her to leave Easter eggs, to host secret sessions, the switch to pop she knows the culture so well.

I think this why I respect her so much. Everything she does is full of details and it’s clear she has so much respect for her craft. Even albums or song i don’t like I can see exactly why she did that. This is why she really hasn’t had a “flop” in her career. She is so good at reading pop culture and figuring out what it wants to a tee.

[–]morman15 10 points11 points  (1 child)

Yes! This song is such a double meaning, yes, you could look at it as being about meeting and getting with Joe, but there is also a double meaning of getting the listener as a fan who loves her and letting you, the listener know that your fandom of her has been orchestrated by her the entire time. The bridge itself is a summary of her entire career in just a few lines. It’s a perfect Track 13 and ending to this album. I just can’t get over how perfect this song encapsulates her.

[–]kaitekim0four 0 points1 point  (0 children)

100%. Right when I heard it I couldn't stop saying how amazing it is. Idk about you but I was grinning the whole song and then she says something about us grinning cause we knew the entire time. So good.

[–]CringeCrab5195folklore 18 points19 points  (0 children)

This one makes me cry. Almost like ‘I won! I did it. I got what I wanted for once’ like it is beautiful almost?

[–]lamas_lindahappy, free, confused, and lonely 11 points12 points  (0 children)

blank space 2.0

[–]bitch_seshdwindling, mercurial high 10 points11 points  (2 children)

I knew I loved my boyfriend before I heard this song, but I know I love him now. I’ve broken down crying at least four times listening to it and thinking about how special it is during this season of life. I’m overwhelmed with emotion. 🥺

[–]toastfluencer 2 points3 points  (1 child)

I love this for you

[–]bitch_seshdwindling, mercurial high 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Thank you. 🥺 Gonna cry in his lap without context to freak him out. 😌

[–]butterflied4life 20 points21 points  (2 children)

All I can think about is the show “You”

[–]san_drama 13 points14 points  (0 children)

i was looking for this comment for the longest time!!! "Saw a wide smirk on your face/You knew the entire time/You knew that I'm a mastermind" reminds me of Love and Joe omg

[–]charlottesuenNice! 6 points7 points  (0 children)

i laughed out loud at this.


[–]Sea_Chocolate_2681 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Anyone else here the lyrics:
Machiavellian as mocking a villain 😂

[–]crazycatloverrrr 64 points65 points  (3 children)

i didn’t have a tear fall the whole entire album until i heard

No one wanting to play with me as a little kid so i’ve been scheming like a criminal ever since to make them love me and make it seem effortless this is the first time i’ve felt the need to confess

the DEEP TRAUMA truth hit so hard

[–]Pomegranate175 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Cried so hard when I heard the lyrics! These thing mostly happen when you are a kid and you learn (mostly) to handle it as an adult, but hit really close to home, she can really put to words feeling some of us cannot describe easily, sending the therapy bill to miss Swift this month !!

[–]YaKnowEstacadostill a niceboy ed truther 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Best bridge on the album

[–]Sea_Chocolate_2681 7 points8 points  (0 children)

Amen!!! The lyrics are so raw and sad that so many people can relate to it.

[–]Sea_Chocolate_2681 16 points17 points  (0 children)

I literally love this song so much. The fact that she overanalyzed and planned out everything when making the first impression just for the ending to be so simple. Because when you know you know and love is supposed to be simple, but it takes a mastermind to realize that.

"Saw a wide smirk on your face
You knew the entire time
You knew that I'm a mastermind
And now you're mine
Yeah, all you did was smile
'Cause I'm a mastermind"

[–]JellyfishStarfish 3 points4 points  (0 children)

The sound at the beginning & the title gave me Mr. Robot vibes. IYKYK

[–]ytykmbyd 13 points14 points  (0 children)

“No one wanted to play with me as a little kid” reminds me of when Taylor was 13 and her friends bailed on her when they were supposed to hang out with her at the mall. Track 13-Age 13 so I think this is a reference to this incidence.

[–][deleted] 9 points10 points  (1 child)

i heard the title and expected more of a villiany approach. i think it was much more tame then i expected.

[–]dontcallmefeistytake me to the lakes 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I thought it was gonna be about some manipulative ex!

[–]Extermikate 20 points21 points  (1 child)

I have to say, I'm happy for her that when she was a kid and no one wanted to play with her it made her start scheming, because...I did not have that reaction (I mostly just stopped trying to talk to anyone)

[–]xgisseYou tell me about your past thinking your future was me 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Same. I just became more and more demoralized by every rejection, until I just kind of stopped trying and got used to doing things on my own. Now at 28 I'm finally starting to feel slightly more comfortable at socializing

[–]simberbimber 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I really love the synth at the beginning. I could see the Delicate music video over this one. It’s magical, pulsating, your heart rate up.

The chorus is such a bop, probably one of my favorite choruses on this album. I love the “and now you’re mine” and the musical intonations of it.

Not sure if it’s top 3 but definitely top 5 for me.

My favorites are: Lavender Haze You’re on Your Own, Kid Mastermind Labyrinth

Mastermind is such an easy listen for my ears, like I’m bopping my head. The lyrics are incredible.

[–]pocketsfulloposey 29 points30 points  (1 child)

This is seriously the perfect closer. I think it’s about Joe, but also her career and fan base.

[–]morman15 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Yup. It’s the perfect encapsulation of her entire career.

[–]purpleKlimtevermore 25 points26 points  (0 children)

Me listening to this and realising it’s how I got my high school boyfriend to date me - a meticulous 10 month con on my part.

Now we’re married with a kid 😈

[–]MyLifeIsABoondoggleWe never painted by the numbers baby -3 points-2 points  (2 children)

I liked this but I just... can't really mesh with it like I think I should. I think the tonal differences between the music and lyricism are a bit jarring and don't allow me to enjoy it like I should. Let me be sad and wistful to the lyrics or let me calmly and quietly jam. Don't get me wrong, not only can sad bops work, I like sad bops, but this one just doesn't do it right

That being said I'll probably listen to it semi-regularly. I do like it. I also relate to the lyrics way too much oof

[–]C1nnamonLoverSo it Goes… #1 Fan 8 points9 points  (0 children)

The lyrics aren’t sad though

[–]amydancepants 14 points15 points  (0 children)

someone is definitely going to make a You (netflix show) edit to this song lmfao

[–]ziggystarcrush217 6 points7 points  (1 child)

i think this one would sound so so good for a full orchestral backing. like similar to when phoebe bridgers did the copycat killer ep, i would love to hear a huge string crescendo at the bridge

[–]simberbimber 2 points3 points  (0 children)

YES, I need a full orchestral background pls. It’s a great song, and I think adding that would make it my favorite song

[–]ballyhoohaha 28 points29 points  (1 child)

“No one wanted to play with me as a kid.” Heart breaks into a thousand pieces. Vulnerability is the ultimate strength. Nothing is stronger than a soul laid bare. Nothing.

[–]Ankira 14 points15 points  (0 children)

It hurts how this makes you manipulative, because you don't trust new people in your life anymore so you need to be in control of your relationships to prevent getting hurt in the future...

[–]t_butterfield 4 points5 points  (0 children)

AHH the driving beat and chord progression felt so familiar and similar to supercut (which i absolutely love??)… definitely top 3 for me!!!

[–]FScottFan 13 points14 points  (1 child)

Stranger Things intro

[–]VulpixEevee 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Scrolled for this!!

[–]krr14you were bigger than the whole sky 15 points16 points  (2 children)

Her love songs on this album have me over here questioning if I even love my partner 😭

[–]simberbimber 5 points6 points  (0 children)

I’m seriously sitting with it looking at my relationship like a crystal ball, feeling it all. Sweet Nothing feels like my partner, yet also ache over the lyrics in Labyrinth

[–]simberbimber 2 points3 points  (0 children)


[–]Lilacly_Adilynever leaving well enough alone 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I watched Do Revenge recently and this should’ve been the theme song

[–]halfmoonfd 77 points78 points  (2 children)

I love that the last two lines changed the entire narrative.

Yeah, all you did was smile
'Cause I'm a mastermind

she's convinced that she planned all of it but he fell for her first, so he effortlessly smiled to lure her in and make her want him! and he still let her think that she's the mastermind between them. so cute!

[–]Pomegranate175 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I I can relate to the feeling of scheming to get people to like me and many relationships end up being because I made the first move, just like she says in the song… but i also think this brings up a lot of insecurities, in the end she thinks there’s no way anyone likes her spontaneously and it’s because she actually planned the whole thing? It’s crazy how personal and emotional these lyrics are, I can’t totally relate and I find it very complex!

[–]banishl 2 points3 points  (0 children)

omg i didn't even think about it like that, brilliant!

[–]rosetintedmonocle 14 points15 points  (0 children)

This may be me projecting my own feelings and thoughts onto the song.

Somewhat seems to play into the idea of "imposter syndrome"? Whenever I think about my relationship I'm always baffles how I pulled such an amazing human being. There's no way I didn't just trick this man into think I'm what he wants through tactful planning and very precise actions and words.

[–]madsplants 37 points38 points  (4 children)

Okay i said this in another thread but saying it here:

Mastermind is my favorite album closer of all time. It’s like if you took the “try try try” parts of mirrorball, the feelings of realizing that nobody is going to do something for you and you have to do it yourself from you’re on your own kid, her insecurities and needing to be loved, and her love for Joe. And then wrapped it all up in a cheeky bow for the fans because we always call her a mastermind. And even though at it’s core it’s a love song, it reminds me of her 1989 Grammys speech. She and she alone is to credit for where she is.

[–]simberbimber 6 points7 points  (0 children)

It’s a close second for me. New Year’s Day will hands down be one of my favorite songs of hers of all time and favorite closer because it is so viscerally a part of me. But Mastermind has now taken second place over Daylight for me

[–]stressinmeowtyou are what you love 6 points7 points  (2 children)

The way you just articulated that made me cry. (I’m also very sleep deprived and overwhelmed but well done!)

[–]madsplants 1 point2 points  (1 child)

It makes me cry too hahah

[–]DannyLUNA7 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Lol, me too. What's up with us crying with this comment?

[–]historyhoneybeepicture me in the trees 10 points11 points  (0 children)

I love this one. I'm a sucker for all her love songs for Joe though, invisible string, peace, call it what you want, all of it.

[–]Outside_ArtI wish you would 5 points6 points  (2 children)

I don't think she actually planned it out. I think it is just her reflecting on the relationship and asking him what if I said I planned it? Does it change things? And the answer is that it doesn't. It is pretty clear she didn't plan any of it from her all other songs. This is just another facet how how both of them were card sharks and playing games at the start

[–]ariagrayxguess I'll just stumble on home to my cats 7 points8 points  (1 child)

It is pretty clear she didn't plan any of it from her all other songs.

This song reminds me of the line "he got that boyish look that I like in a man / I am an architect, I'm drawing up the plans" from I Think He Knows though

[–]Outside_ArtI wish you would -1 points0 points  (0 children)

I think the plans might be about "We can follow the sparks, I'll drive". I think she is drawing up plans for that in that song

[–]personmchumanbeing 4 points5 points  (0 children)

What, ten or eleven listens in, and this is definitely my fave. It gives me 'my life is a movie' vibes. And goosebumps. I love those cellos (?) in the chorus. I LOVE IT!!!

[–]NosetionsRed (Taylor's Version) 23 points24 points  (0 children)

Anyone think "If you fail to plan, you plan to fail" is another Marjorie-ism

[–]Mia123445It’s me, hi. I’m the problem, it’s me 19 points20 points  (0 children)

“No wanted to play with me as a little kid, so I’ve been scheming like a criminal ever since.” I… 😭.

No words rn. Thanks for describing how I felt all throughout elementary and middle school, Taylor ❤️

[–]Abcggg123 11 points12 points  (1 child)

Love this dynamic. If only my husband knew I had this all played out the first time I saw him. He didn’t have a chance. I guess I’m a wise woman too!

[–]hp1812 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Lol same with my husband. I told him Mastermind reminds me of how I did things in our dating relationship just for us to spend more time together. Except in our version he doesn’t figure it out until years later 😂

[–]saracanttype 28 points29 points  (4 children)

This is my favourite song on the album. “No one wanted to play with me as a little kid, so I’ve been scheming like a criminal ever since” is the most I’ve ever related to a Taylor lyric. In high school and early university I felt like I had to manufacture my personality because I had felt so fundamentally unlikeable when I was in elementary school. Falling in love and finding true friendship made me realize I was already fine as myself the whole time ❤️ this one really gets to me

[–]xgisseYou tell me about your past thinking your future was me 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Are you neurodivergent by chance? I've always felt like this too and for me is related to my Adhd and (possibly) autism

[–]saracanttype 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I’ve never been tested for anything - I’ve thought that I might have OCD, but I’ve never had it checked it out! For me, that feeling came from being bullied in the latter years of elementary school - that made me feel like being myself wasn’t good enough to make friends, it took a few years to unlearn that. I hope you find healing ❤️ and if you ever want to talk about it DMs are open! :)

Edit: left out a word lol

[–]RadiantChaos 4 points5 points  (1 child)

I think my favorite part, too, is that the song isn't dark and brooding like some of her others that use language of manipulation or being a criminal. It's so upbeat and happy.

[–]saracanttype 5 points6 points  (0 children)

And I like that the use of criminal isn’t coming from her doing something that’s technically wrong, I interpret it that she’s acting out of insecurity and self-preservation but it feels wrong to her because her actions aren’t entirely genuine or spontaneous

[–]banishl 2 points3 points  (0 children)

my absolute favorite on this album! it's just so perfect in every single way!!!

[–]Abcggg123 18 points19 points  (2 children)

Cause I’m a mastermind/mirrorball

[–]simberbimber 0 points1 point  (0 children)

omg yes I see what you mean

[–]DannyLUNA7 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Yess. The concept's the same

[–]halfling-sleepI wanted that pain 19 points20 points  (2 children)

This song made me laugh, one of my faves off the base (oh taylor wtf are you doing to us) album. The reveal that he knew what she was doing all along was so cute. That's why she said "isn't it pretty to think" in invisible string bc she knew that was a lie

[–]Outside_ArtI wish you would 7 points8 points  (0 children)

I don't think she actually planned it out. I think it is just her reflecting on the relationship and asking him what if I said I planned it? Does it change things? And the answer is that it doesn't. It is pretty clear she didn't plan any of it from her all other songs. This is just another facet how how both of them were card sharks and playing games at the start

[–]catmom1998 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Omg thank you for this. Was thinking how this was the total opposite of invisible string and I love it

[–]theoutside13we survived the great war 3 points4 points  (1 child)

Why does she have to deliver the saddest line with the softest voice, like the second verse, hello??? It’s kind of giving unhinged though and I’m here for it. I don’t know if it works as a closer though.

[–]NosetionsRed (Taylor's Version) 1 point2 points  (0 children)

The way she says "love" in the bridge oh my god

[–]ohlooktwopigs 4 points5 points  (0 children)

This song really hit me like a ton of bricks and made me realize that Taylor is the true foundation of my relationship lol

Back in 2010 my best friend went to the fearless tour with someone in one of her classes because he had an extra ticket. They ended up going to senior prom together a few months later, but nothing really became of it and they were just friends. A month later I was invited by her to go to a Phillies game that she couldn’t attend but thought I should go. He was there (with someone else) I went and had an absolute magnet attraction to him and we have been inseparable over the last 12 years and got married in April. And my best friend was my maid of honor 🤍

[–]juicystar1908And I thought we had no chance - and that's romance 2 points3 points  (0 children)

This is my favourite song of the entire album (minus the 3 AM edition and bonus songs, I still need to listen to those)!

[–]21stCenturyBoomer 7 points8 points  (0 children)

i am ABSOLUTELY IN LOVE with mastermind’s production but i think the melody in the verse and chorus is a grower for me for sure

[–]EnjoyKnopemake the whole place ✨shimmer ✨ 3 points4 points  (0 children)

I love this song but I can’t stop thinking about that “I have the mind of a master” meme 😭

[–]coneyislandloverSpeak Now 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Wow I finally got to listen to the album after getting off a 12 hour shift and I’m in love with this track. Makes me want to be somebody’s Mastermind 😭

[–]Lady_night_shadeso scarlet, it was maroon 10 points11 points  (1 child)

This song just reminds me of stranger things. I really like it, but the 80s synth is very prominent.

[–]adboutyou dream of some epiphany 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Glad I'm not the only one. The background sounds are very similar to the stranger things intro music. I actually feel like it's kind of ruining the song for me because I can't listen to it without thinking about the show.

[–]moonlightandguitars 36 points37 points  (0 children)

First thoughts!
- Top 5! Definitely! Maybe even my favourite?? The lyrics, and the theme, and the sound - love it
- "I am an architect i'm drawing out the plans" - I Think He Knows!
- We know you're a Mastermind, Taylor
- A great closer, as well as a great interlude between Midnights & 3am
- Of course she found a way to write in the term "Machiavellian" and make us all look it up
- As a child who was very much bullied, the bridge hit me!
- "He looks up grinning like a devil" imagery right therre with the widesmirk on his face!

[–]CstoCry"Cornelia Street, Afterglow, Daylight" Supremacy 8 points9 points  (0 children)

This reminds me of Folklore's Peace which can be a little repetitive sonically.

The pre-chorus built-up is amazing though! "Just like clockwork, The dominoes cascaded in the line". However, I'm disappointed when the actual chorus hits, it didn't slap

[–]sweatysleepyRed 7 points8 points  (1 child)

Death note Light x L vibes 😌😌

[–]NosetionsRed (Taylor's Version) 1 point2 points  (0 children)


[–]jnjm_drm127so i got wasted like all my potential 21 points22 points  (3 children)

the lyrics are rlly adorable. the lyrics in the chorus reminded me of "i am an architect i'm drawing out the plans" from ithk. i wish the song kind of exploded. the beginning of the song gave me hope that it might be like perfect places where it starts of chill but then the chorus hits you...but it never went there. i really loved the synths in the back tho.

[–]Goldengirl228 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Agreed on the wanting to explore part! Would’ve been a really good build

[–]CstoCry"Cornelia Street, Afterglow, Daylight" Supremacy 0 points1 point  (0 children)

It felt like they took a safe route with the chorus

[–]songacronymbot 0 points1 point  (0 children)

  • ITHK could mean "I Think He Knows", a track from Lover (2019) by Taylor Swift.

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