Tuesday, November 18, 2008

John Hughes misled me....

So, The Nerdlinger family moved domiciles this weekend, and this explains why the postings have been so infrequent over the last little while, and for that, I apologize. I'll get back to posting regularly just as soon as can be.

In the meantime, during our epic packing, we were looking for something on the TV to distract us from the boredom of packing endless boxes. We came across Pretty in Pink.

Now, I would like to pause for a moment to make an admission. Along with each and every Smiths album, the films of John Hughes and Cameron Crowe helped get me through my adolescent angst. I could watch his flicks and identify with the teens struggling through their trials and tribulations. I thought that Hughes and Judd Nelson really "got" me.

Pretty in Pink was one of the darker films in the Hughes ouevre. Like a lot of these movies, it deals primarily with two things; unrequited love and the pressures of fitting in to a clique structure. When I was a young teen, who else would I identify with but Duckie as played by Jon Cryer? Duckie was awkward and nerdy and totally in love with best friend Andie (Molly Ringwald), and if she could only see that he was funny and offbeat and unique and devoted to her, they would live happily ever after, right? I mean, what teen hasn't been there? And then at the end, she chooses that douchebag Blaine (Andrew McCarthy).

Except that, watching it as an adult, an odd thing happened. I came to a shocking realization:

Duckie is a stalker. Oh yes. Duckie is one firm rejection away from killing Andie's cat. There's a scene where he phones her like, twelve times in one night. He's constantly creeping in through the back door at her work without telling her he's there. She knows how the Duckmeister feels, and she's not into him in that way. But Duckie can't let go, and has deluded himself into thinking there's a future. When that's threatened, he jealously freaks out and sits on a mailbox in the pouring rain.

And he's annoying. He dresses like an idiot (even for the eighties), he badly lip-synchs to songs for no apparent reason, and he touches the tapedeck in other people's cars, which is a fucking faux pas.

And you know what? Andrew McCarthy is not so much a douchebag anymore. Yeah, he dresses like a preppie moron, but at least he doesn't look like he's from Mars a la Duckie. Blaine's geniunely trying to break free of his clique restrictions, as is Andie, and while he'll probably dump Andie once he goes to Yale and starts banging coeds, at least he won't write her letters in his own blood like Duckie might.

Wow. You know you've officially left your rebellious teen years behind when you sympathise more with Andrew McCarthy than Jon Cryer.

Lloyd Dobler still fucking rules, though.

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