The Grammy winner's fans — who search for hidden messages in her songs that shed light on the real-life people they're about — flocked to Twitter Friday morning shortly after the album's midnight release. They believe one of Swift's new songs, "Betty," is about the baby Lively and Reynolds welcomed last year.
The clues? For starters, Swift, 30, is close pals with the "Gossip Girl" alum, 32, and her actor hubby, 43. She previously featured the voice of their 5-year-old daughter, James, on her 2018 song "Gorgeous."
This time around, "Betty" name-checks James and her little sister, Inez, 3. Fans believe the song isn't about the little girls but uses their names to tell a story about teenage characters. Swift told fans during a live chat ahead of the release of the album's lead single, "Cardigan," that she included three songs on "Folklore" that she calls a "Teenage Love Triangle," Bustle reports.
"You heard the rumors from Inez / You can't believe a word she says / Most times, but this time it was true / The worst thing that I ever did / Was what I did to you," Swift croons on "Betty."
She continues, "She said, 'James, get in, let's drive' / Those days turned into nights / Slept next to her, but / I dreamt of you all summer long."
Did we mention that Reynolds shared a photo of Swift at a piano to tease the album's release in his Instagram story?
I need to know if Betty is @blakelively and @VancityReynolds 3rd child.
It can't be a coincidence that
James and Inez are lyrics in the same song. I love Blake and I need to know @taylorswift13#Betty#folklore
— Ellen. I'm feeling 22 (@mintybluebells) July 24, 2020
Shortly after the album dropped, fans began speculating.
"I need to know if Betty is @blakelively and @VancityReynolds 3rd child. It can't be a coincidence that James and Inez are lyrics in the same song. I love Blake and I need to know @taylorswift13," one fan tweeted.
— je(R.E.M.)y (@Music_Maniac_19) July 24, 2020
Of course, Swift's die-hards have other theories, too. Lots of other theories. Some believe "Betty" is told from the singer's own point of view, and she uses the name James for herself because, as fans know, her parents named her after singer-songwriter James Taylor.
THE JAMES IN BETTY IS TAYLOR SINCE SHE WAS NAMED AFTER JAMES TAYLOR IN THIS ESSAY I WILL-
— jason derinulo jr (@outroaugust) July 24, 2020
Others believe "Betty" is about Swift and her supermodel pal Karlie Kloss. They argue that James represents Swift and Betty represents Kloss, whose middle name is Elizabeth. Hmm, a stretch, but an intriguing one!