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Office Argument: Do Taylor Swift and Tom Hiddleston Make a Good Power Couple?

Alison Herman says yes; Allison P. Davis says no. Hear them both out.

Ringer illustration
Ringer illustration

Allison P. Davis: I should have known that Taylor Swift and Tom Hiddleston might end up canoodling after seeing this Instagram footage of them having the whitest dance-off ever (to T.I.’s "Bring Em Out"). I didn’t take it seriously, though, and here’s why: Love fires can catch on a dance floor, but only when two people can catch the same beat. Not that either of them were really on beat, but they definitely weren’t riding the same bump-n-grind groove. If you can’t do that, you have no business being a couple.

Alison Herman: Allison, I object! That infamous Instagram clip doesn’t capture two people dancing together (or, as you pointed out, on beat). Instead, it’s two people dancing vaguely in proximity to each other, getting a publicity boost from said proximity while still doing their own thing. This also happens to be a perfect metaphor for an effective celebrity couple! I may not love this pairing, but I certainly respect it. Taylor gets an upgrade — British! Maybe Bond! Definitely not a DJ! — and Tom gets one step closer to erasing our collective memory of that one time he got beat up on camera by a CGI’ed Mark Ruffalo. Long live Tiddleswift.

A.P.D.: Nobody’s reputation gets an upgrade when the couple name is as bad as Tiddleswift, which sounds like something dirty you do by yourself, or Swifleton, which sounds like a reject Hogwarts house. Hiddleswift? Barf. Tomlor? That’s a monster in my nightmares. TayTom? Don’t insult me. When two souls are meant to be together, their couple name will be a beautiful dulcet sound on the wind. It will roll off the tongue with ease. It will look right when it’s splashed on the cover of Us Weekly. This already makes my eyes bleed. Save Tom from this fate! He deserves better than an aggressively bad couple nickname, and so do we.

A.H.: A couple name doesn’t have to be pleasant to be good! (Are we going to pretend "Brangelina" doesn’t sound like a breakfast cereal aggressively marketed toward tween girls?) It just has to be catchy. It needs to lock into our brains like … well, like a Taylor Swift song, thereby bringing the couple in question one step closer to world domination. Case in point: Tay and her last beau never had one, a red flag if there ever was one. See? Tiddleswift’s already starting out strong!

A.P.D.: Please, stop saying Tiddleswift. I convulse every time. I get why this is a good PR move — sort of. Taylor Swift is now the clear victor over Calvin Harris. (I’m not convinced Tom needs it.) But it just doesn’t feel right. Calvin Harris and Taylor Swift are of the same ilk: two boiled potatoes nestled in a bowl of mayo. Tom Hiddleston looks like British aristocracy. He looks like he summers on yachts with Tilda Swinton and has a book club with Emma Watson. Taylor Swift hangs out with Karlie Kloss — and looks like the type to hang out with Karlie Kloss. Is Tom gonna make cookies and play with Taylor’s cats? Absolutely not. This love is doomed because Tilda Swinton will fall asleep in her presence if Tom ever brings her to a dinner party.

A.H.: Saying it is the only way we’ll get used to it, because face it: That’s what we’re gonna have to do. See, this feels exactly right to me. Taylor Swift may not be British aristocracy, but she’s the closest damn thing to an aristocrat that America has: a skinny, pretty WASP who was born rich, got richer, and has the class signifiers to match. This photo was taken near her mansion in coastal Rhode Island, for God’s sake! Meanwhile, perfect as Tom may be in our hearts, he really does need this. If you’re trying to be famous — real, American-movie-star famous, not Tumblr-GIF-sets-of–Crimson Peak famous — you’ve gotta outgrow Marvel by any means necessary, including an ultrafamous girlfriend. These two slender-hipped wonders were simply meant to be. All we can do is embrace them.