John Cleese just about brought out Taylor Swift’s claws when he insulted the singer’s cat on The Graham Norton Show. Swift was appearing on the British talk show Friday (it airs Saturday, 11 p.m. ET, on BBC America), with the Monty Python troupe member and cricket player Kevin Pietersen. When the discussion turned to Swift’s cat Olivia Benson, named for Mariska Hargitay’s character on Law & Order: SVU, Norton showed a picture of the white Scottish Fold.
“How did it have the accident?” Cleese asked, prompting a confused look from Swift. He continued: “Is that a proper cat? Or is it damaged?” Before Swift could rise to Olivia’s defense, he finished with, “That’s the weirdest cat I’ve ever seen in my life.” Here’s the full exchange:
When Pietersen, who is allergic to cats, said he wasn’t “a massive fan” of the animals, Swift began scooting away from him. Cleese, on the other hand, is a massive cat fan, especially when compared to dogs. But he didn’t earn any points with Swift with this comment: “I much prefer cats. They’re unpredictable and cussed … like women, you know?”
Swift’s latest commercial for Diet Coke features a bit of a new song—more on that later—and a whole bunch of kitties, including a cameo from her own Olivia Benson at the end. The concept? Swift is playing with a single kitty, but as she consumes the Diet Coke that kitty begins to multiply.
Soon they are overtaking her as if they were Tribbles and she were Captain Kirk. The ad ends with the tagline: “What if life tasted as good as Diet Coke?” If life were how Swift imagined it, life would taste like an awful lot of hairballs.
The commercial also features a clip of a new song. It’s hard to get a great a read on the track, which has an appropriately sweet melody, though one can make out the lyrics: “And that’s how it works, that’s how you get the girl.” The song certainly doesn’t seem as darkly emotional as Swift’s “Out of the Woods,” which was released earlier this week.
But back to the cats. There are a lot of them, though Olivia naturally gets special treatment, posing with Swift’s album at the end. One remaining question: Is Meredith Grey jealous?
Light filters in to Taylor Swift's gorgeous New York apartment. She sits up in bed, stretches her arms and addresses Olivia Benson, who is curled up at her feet. Taylor can't hear Olivia Benson's thoughts.
T.S.: Wow. What a beautiful day! I'm feeling 22! What should I wear?
O.B.: Why must we repeat this charade day after day? And you're 24.
T.S.: I think my little red and black plaid skirt with the totally cute red tank top and black Mary Janes with knee socks. and a white cardigan would be perfect too! What a great idea, Olivia Benson. Where did you learn so much about fashion?
O.B.: I would never tell you to wear those granny stockings. Please just shut up and feed me.
T.S.: Here, take this delicious kitty tranquilizer, I mean treat.
O.B. : Fine. Let's just get this over with.
Taylor emerges on her front stoop, holding Olivia Benson on her arm. Taylor looks around in wonder.
T.S: Welcome to New York! The lights are so bright, but they never blind me.
O.B.: It's daytime, genius.
T.S. OH MY GOD!! Like, are all my ex-boyfriends stalking me or something? There's Jake right across the street!
O.B.: Please don't go talk to him.
T.S.: I am totally going to talk to him. He is so obvy not over me. He is going to be so jealous when he sees you with me.... HIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII Jake!! Did you see me on The American Music Awards? Wasn't I good? This is my cat Olivia Benson. She's a Scottish Fold. I am writing a song about her called "My Boyfriend is a Cat." What do you think about that?
Jake: You're writing a song called "My Boyfriend is a Cat, What Do You Think About That?"
T.S.: No! I asked you what you thought about my cat song. Don't you want to say hi to Olivia Benson?
Jake: Hi Olivia Benson. You are so cute.
O.B.: Hi Jake. You are so cute.
T.S.: What are you doing in my neighborhood, Jakey? Didn't I tell you like five million times that we are never ever ever getting back together?
Jake Yeah. OK. I have a new girlfriend, Slovenian supermodel Svetlanka. We are going to Paris tomorrow. She is so excited that she wanted to have baguettes for breakfast today. And she only likes the kind at the bakery around the corner from your apartment. I pleaded with her to try some other one, but she insisted. Believe me, I pleaded. A lot.
T.S.: PARIS?? How many times did I tell you I WANTED TO GO TO PARIS WITH YOU???
Jake Gyllenhaal runs off screaming
T.S.: You better run! Your'e a liar, and pathetic, and mean, and mean, and mean, and mean!!!
O.B.: I hate that song.
T.S.: Can you believe that Olivia Benson? Can you believe he's taking that skank to Paris? I totally think he made her up. Who's named Svetlanka anyway?
O.B.: I want to go to Paris with Jake Gyllenhaal.
T.S.: That was like super traumatic. I need to do somehing nice for myself. Let's go to Serendipity and share a frozen hot chocolate.
O.B.: Chocolate make me barf.
T.S.: I changed my mind. Let's go to a spa and have a girls' day!
O.B.: I'm a cat. I don't need to go to a spa.
T.S.: Yes you do. Your beautiful fur needs to be groomed and styled. And you have some gunk around your eyes. WAIT!! I just heard you! I heard your thoughts, Olivia Benson!
O.B.: Oh no. Now I have to be nice.
O.B.: Nothing. I really do want to get my ears fluffed and cleaned. Great idea, Taylor.
Taylor finds a spa and walks in
T.S.: Hi. Olivia Benson and I want the works. Manis, pedis, massage..
Spa front desk worker: You can't bring that cat in here.
T.S.: Yes I can. I'm Taylor Swift. And there's a dog in here. I see it!
Spa front desk worker: That's the official spa dog, Spotify. He's hypo-allergenic.
O.B.: Am I hypo-allergenic?
T.S.: SPOTIFY?? I HATE SPOTIFY! I hate this spa! I'm never coming here again!
O.B.: I want to go home and eat and use my litter box.
T.S.: Why didn't you just tell me Olivia Benson?
O.B.: Because I didn't think you would listen to me.
They leave the spa and Taylor becomes entranced with a shop window
T.S.: Wow, look. Pink kitty earmuffs for your flatty little earsies!! I am so getting you a pair Olivia Benson.
Olivia starts scratching herself
O.B.: I have fleas.
T.S.: Ew. Shake it off! Just shake it off.
A flea jumps on Taylor and she starts scratching herself
Abigail Breslin was accused of calling Taylor Swift an "unstable cat lady" on Twitter. Hollywood Life, MTV and Us Weekly, among other outlets, assumed that the actress was mocking the pop singer via the social networking site Thursday after she modified the lyrics to Swift's "Blank Space."
Addressing her 168,000 followers, Breslin, 18, tweeted, "Cuz darling I'm a nightmare dressed like an emotionally unstable cat lady." In the hook, Swift, 24, sings, "Cuz darling I'm a nightmare dressed like a daydream."
Breslin, who just released her own ex-boyfriend-bashing pop single, "You Suck," explained what she meant later that night. "To clarify: my tweet earlier quoting a taylor swift lyric was me saying I AM AN EMOTIONALLY UNSTABLE CAT LADY," the Perfect Sisters actress told the media. "NOT TAYLOR. JSYK." Swift, meanwhile, has not commented via her own Twitter account.
Both stars are self-proclaimed cat ladies, however. Breslin announced on Dec. 8 that her kitten "has a Twitter @notailnoprob," and Swift often discusses her feline friends, Olivia Benson and Meredith Grey. In fact, earlier this year, Swift said she'd rather stay home with her cats than go on a date. "I'm not going to compromise the happiness and independence that I've found for just anybody. The idea of a date gives me a partial panic attack!" she told People. "But I'm fine! I have two cats. That's all I need."
The year is coming to a close, so what better time to take a minute to look back on the most adorable, heart-warming and sometimes heart-breaking cats of the year? That's exactly what we'll be doing with the 12 Cats of Christmas. Now it's the turn of a feline who's living it up with pop-star royalty ...
Taylor Swift spent much of 2014 ruffling the feathers of music snobs -- but her antics breached the closeted walls of cat Internet culture when footage was snapped of her carrying her latest cat, Olivia Benson, out and about in the New York City. Debate ensued! We even advised Taylor on cat-appropriate places in NYC to take Ms. Benson!
Beyond the heated arguments, though, Olivia looks like she's having a ball in the Big Apple. It helps that she gets to call a near-$20 million Tribeca penthouse home, but within those no-doubt platinum-gilded walls she already has a ready-made play-pal to call on in Taylor's first cat, the honorable Meredith Grey. The two frequently star on their shake-happy pop princess' Instagram account -- and recently they celebrated National Cat Day together by sharing a coy cuddle.
Rummaging deeper into Taylor Swift's Instagram account, it's refreshing to see that she is quite happily besotted with cats. When her parents cat-sit, photo sessions with Olivia and Meredith ensue, and Taylor recently partied-it-up on a night out by getting all wild and crazy and striking a cat pose. "Yes we are cats," is how she proudly captioned the following photo.