Penn Badgley Explains Why 'You' 's Joe Goldberg Would 'Despise' Taylor Swift

Take it from the man who plays a homicidal stalker, it's exhausting always rooting for the antihero

YOU penn badgley, taylor swift
Photo: Courtesy of Netflix, Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

Penn Badgley is taking a stab in the dark and proclaiming that his You character Joe Goldberg is not a Taylor Swift fan.

"I think, unfortunately, he would despise her," he told Variety. "Because she's successful and blonde maybe? I don't know, but I think he would."

Badgley's instinct that Joe would never be a Swiftie is funny given that the singer's work has appeared in the Netflix hit several times

"Exile", Swift collaboration with Bon Iver from her album Folklore, also played at the end of season 3 as Goldberg's home went up in flames — with murderous wife Love (Victoria Pedretti) inside.

In fact, there's even a Swift reference in "She's Not There," an episode that Badgley himself directed in the forthcoming second half of season 4.

Badgley also famously used Swift's "Anti-Hero" for his TikTok debut, where his real-life self appears to meet his character, which prompted an "OMG" from the 12-time Grammy winner herself in the comments.

"I'm screaming," one fan wrote, while another follower took the song choice as a "Swiftie confirmed?!" (Badgley has yet to officially reveal that he is a "Swiftie.")

YOU penn badgley
Courtesy of Netflix

Speaking about stepping behind the camera, the 36-year-old actor said he "loved it" because taking creative control over how the story plays out on screen "reinvented the show for me."

Badgley has also evolved his approach to acting in recent seasons by imposing boundaries on what he will and won't do on camera — specifically, he recently revealed in a podcast interview that he asked for "zero" intimate scenes in You.

"It's not a place where I've blurred lines," Badgley further explained to Variety. "There's almost nothing I could say with more consecration. That aspect of Hollywood has always been very disturbing to me — and that aspect of the job, that mercurial boundary — has always been something that I actually don't want to play with at all."

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You is now streaming on Netflix, with the second half of season 4 dropping on March 9.

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