By all accounts, Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn have now been dating—in extreme secrecy—for about two years. During that time, each has spoken nary a word about the other, and if they do let something slip about their relationship, they never name names or go into any detail. In keeping with this frustrating tradition, Swift’s first semi-direct acknowledgement of her boyfriend on Instagram, which arrived toward the end of Thanksgiving, was perhaps the vaguest celebrity social media post in the history of celebrities being vague on social media.
The post in question—which she also copied, verbatim but with slightly different formatting, into her Instagram Story—is masquerading as an innocent promotional post for Alwyn’s new film The Favourite, which begins rolling out in theaters this weekend. It quickly becomes evident, however, that the upload is much more of a Joe Alwyn–appreciation post than one in honor of The Favourite: Rather than focusing on Olivia Colman, Rachel Weisz, or Swift’s pal Emma Stone, ostensibly the film’s three leads, the compilation of clips appears to be a supercut of only Alwyn’s appearances in the movie. (There are a few quick flashes of Stone, probably only allowed by Swift because she’s reportedly the one who set up Swift and Alwyn in the first place.)
“The Favourite is absolutely phenomenal, and it opens in NY and LA tomorrow,” Swift, who accompanied Alwyn to the movie’s New York Film Festival premiere, in September, on a rare night out together, captioned the post, tagging only the handles of the film’s official Instagram page, Nicholas Hoult, and one Joseph Matthew Alwyn. It’s not a lot, but it’s surely enough for those Swifties who read way too far into “Delicate,” “Gorgeous,” and “King of My Heart.”
The last time we heard a peep from either Swift or Alwyn about their relationship was in mid-October, when Alwyn was asked, at the 2018 BFI London Film Festival, about Swift’s recent decision to break her silence on all things political. “I think it’s great. I think it’s important,” was all he would say at the time.
And, in the October 2018 issue of British Vogue, Alwyn quickly brushed past a question about his girlfriend, but only after commenting on their remarkably successful attempts to keep the courtship as far away from the spotlight as possible. “I’m aware people want to know about that side of things,” he said. “I think we have been successfully very private, and that has now sunk in for people.” He added, “But I really prefer to talk about work,” and that was that.