Brow Beat

An Illustrated Timeline of Kanye West and Taylor Swift’s Seesawing Fortunes

When one goes up, the other must come down.

Kanye West and Taylor Swift going up and down on a see-saw.
Photo illustration by Slate. Photos by Rob Kim/Getty Images and Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images.

In the moment Kanye West interrupted Taylor Swift at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards, their fates became forever intertwined. Ever since, their fortunes have teeter-tottered back and forth, with each gain for one seemingly corresponding to an equal and opposite loss for the other.

Just this week, Swift, who until recently was claimed by neo-Nazis as an icon and suspected by others of being a stealth Trump supporter, came out in support of Democrats. Meanwhile, Kanye “George Bush doesn’t care about black people” West was scheduled on Thursday to have a friendly lunch with President Donald Trump. This latest Freaky Friday–esque turn will leave each winning over some new fans while alienating some old ones, but given that pop music fandom has always been steered by the young and more liberal, there’s little question who this week is up and who is down.

So how else to recap their teeter-tottering fortunes except with a literal teeter-totter? Below, nearly a decade of Kanye West and Taylor Swift, in one seesaw.

A Timeline of Kanye West and Taylor Swift’s Seesawing Fortunes
A Timeline of Kanye West and Taylor Swift’s Seesawing Fortunes
A Timeline of Kanye West and Taylor Swift’s Seesawing Fortunes
A Timeline of Kanye West and Taylor Swift’s Seesawing Fortunes
Chart by Slate. Photos by Rob Kim/Getty Images and Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images.