BY ALYSSA FISHER
Back in 2004, girls everywhere were buzzing about the latest sensation to hit theaters. Mean Girls was adorable, hilarious and gave an exaggerated portrayal of high school cliques. Now in 2011, girls continue to fawn over the movie that swept the nation nearly seven years earlier; the hallways of CCHS would be a cold, barren place without the clever interjection of a Mean Girls quote. It’s rare to go a day without catching a group of babbling girls break into hysterics over the clever lines that they practically committed to memory. Comparable to the impact The Breakfast Club had on the 80’s, Mean Girls has undoubtedly become the staple movie of this generation.
It’s strange to think how a teenybopper movie could have such a large impact on a generation. Though, in a wasteland of dumb movies about teenagers, Mean Girls is a smart and funny one, a rarity to find. But what makes it such a hit?
Tina Fey deserves much of the credit; she wrote the sidesplitting script, which was adapted from a non-fiction book by Rosalind Wiseman called Queen Bees and Wannabes: Helping Your Daughter Survive Cliques, Gossip, Boyfriends, and Other Realities of Adolescence. Even though Mean Girls is a bit politically incorrect, teenagers can’t stay away from it because it’s so funny and honest, yet in an overdramatic way. It makes fun of racism, homophobia, and many other things, but not in an especially cruel way.
“[Mean Girls] is sarcastic, funny, and has a really good plot,” sophomore Lindsey Paul said.
The plot appears banal, but it has some unique qualities that will forever be remembered by teenagers. The story centers on Cady Heron, a naïve 16-year-old who dives head first into the shark tank of high school after being homeschooled in Africa for most of her life. What’s she’s not informed of are the ways cliques work in high school, and how you’re stereotyped by who you hang with and how you dress. After being approached by The Plastics, the three hottest, meanest and most popular girls in school, Cady’s two real – though unpopular – friends convince her to pretend to join them and then tear The Plastics down. Things go awry when Cady joins the group, defeats the leader Regina George, and then lets her newfound power as the leader of The Plastics get to her head and she herself becomes the mean girl.
“It’s definitely relatable, but to an extent,” junior Connie Ryu said.
Mean Girls depicts how vindictive teenage girls can be, but it is melodramatic; the cruel, deceptive schemes that ensue aren’t quite seen to that extent at CCHS. Though, it is eye opening to see Cady’s visualizations of the interaction between the students in the same light as the wild animals in Africa.
There were some scene-stealers as well: any of the character Damien’s parts became an instant hit His hilarious, flamboyant personality shined as he comically shouted things like, “She doesn’t even go here!” Hearing that single line nearly every day still hasn’t gotten old, and it seems like it can fit anywhere. More epic Mean Girls’ lines take place in various hilarious scenes, such as math geek Kevin Gnapoor, so confident in his hunkiness, hands out a business card that label him as a “Math Enthusiast/Bad A** MC,” which he proves in an amusing rap.
“Mean Girls is definitely one of my Top Ten favorite movies,” freshman Rachel Haas said. “It’s saved on my DVR; it’s just amazing.”
Anything having to do with Mean Girls is heard practically daily, and this is no exaggeration. The quotes are tossed around daily, even by CCHS’s own CTV. On Friday, February 4, the students actually performed their own rendition of the movie that had everyone rolling on the floor. It was creative and clever, factors that were absent from the sequel.
Yes, a Mean Girls 2 has indeed been released (but only to DVD, which is definitely saying something). Though advertised as a “sequel,” Mean Girls 2 is, in reality, an insipid and horribly botched rip-off of the original. While the individual parts of Mean Girls 2 are obviously derivative of the original, they’ve been assembled so haphazardly that the end result was plain dreadful. If that isn’t enough, the sequel replaced the star-studded cast consisting of Lindsay Lohan, Rachel McAdams, and Amanda Seyfried, with a cast full of young Disney Channel stars, who are in need of an acting coach.
“I wanted to watch Mean Girls 2 just to make fun of it,” Ryu said.
It was evident that this movie was created to keep the spirit of the original Mean Girls alive, and ABC Family took advantage of the situation and tried to cash in on its projected “success.” It’s best described with the words of Regina George: Stop trying to make it happen. It’s not going to happen.
“You just can’t remake Mean Girls without the original characters and Tina Fey [as the screenplay writer],” Haas said.
Even with this disastrous sequel among us, Mean Girls has a lasting impression that will keep us watching for years to come. The hilarious quotes will forever remain part of this generation’s vocabulary, so you don’t have to worry about walking through the hallways without a gaggle of girls giving you your Mean Girls fix for the day.
“It sounds corny, but Mean Girls has impacted our generation,” senior Maryam Attia said.