It’s not every day that an artist manages to top the charts with two singles from the same album. Taylor Swift did this when she followed the successful Shake It Off with Blank Space – a “superstorm ballad that hits like a pitching wedge through your windshield” according to Rolling Stone.
In an interview with Global News, Swift stated that she wrote this song from the perspective of a character she created based on claims made about her by the media.
She detailed that perspective in another interview: “In the last couple years I’ve noticed there’s been a pretty sensational fictionalization of my personal life. […] They’ve kind of drawn up this profile of this girl who is a serial dater, jet setting around with all her boyfriends, she can get ’em but she can’t keep ’em because she’s too emotional and she’s needy.”
The narrative of the song was lauded by Billboard: “Taylor Swift tossed every acidic “Maybe SHE’S the problem” user comment into a blender and served up a self-aware smoothie as the second single from 1989.”
PopMatters called the song to be “likely the best of Swift’s career and easily a candidate for the best pop song of 2014” and that it “captures the essence of 1989 in all its glimmering, solipsistic glory”.
Blank Space spent 7 consecutive weeks at number one in Billboard Top 100 before being dethroned by Mark Ronson’s Uptown Funk (featuring Bruno Mars).