Smarmy Alligator

Politics, pop culture, and self-deprecation

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Alright, alright. I’m horrifically embarrassed to admit that I even thought of watching this moving, much less having spent an hour and a half actually doing so, but man. The Mandy Moore phenomenon that is “How To Deal” shored up almost every point I made in my thesis so perfectly, how can I not mention it?

I knew this movie would be bad, but I had no idea just how bad it would really be. I thought bad in a “Clueless” kind of way. Maybe even in a “Freaky Friday” kind of way. Oh no. It was bad in a “why am I watching this shlocky badness?” kind of way. The screenwriters seemed to never have met a teenage person ever in their lives. The predictability factor was off the charts. For the love of buddha, it was bloody awful.

But here’s why I’m writing about it anyway: there are some very basic themes that prevade in “female coming-of-age stories written in the past decade.” These include divorced, inept parents, who can’t teach their daughters how to truly love another person; young girls learning how to trust other people; young girls tormented by popular, bitchy other girls; young girls with fathers who aren’t willing to grow up; young girls whose mothers are experiencing the same dating/relationship things (and hence are not much in the way of role models); on and on ad nauseum.

My god, this movie fit into my thesis perfectly. How can I not write about it, despite it’s inherent, unacceptable, painful badness?

(And as an aside: After having spent the past few years examining female coming-of-age stories in the past decade in literature, might it be worthwhile to study it in real life, too?)


Written by laura k

August 14, 2004 at 5:37 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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