"You know the rules. You can't sit with us."
I remember the first time I ever watched Mean Girls.
I was 13 (I know, I made it THAT LONG without ever seeing it) and I was hooked from the opening sequence. This was stuff I knew, but I had never seen it played out so accurately on screen. The perception people have of being homeschooled, the inner-mechanisms of girl cliques and how weird it is when your one friends mum tries to be part of the group. (Amy Poehler can totally be part of my clique though.) How sometimes you suppress your actual skills in order to fit in, and how you can sometimes trample your real friends in the process.
In an hour and a half, Tina Fey blew the lid on teenage girls. She also created the most quotable film on the planet. I don't think a single day goes by where I DON'T drop a Mean Girls line. (My hair is definitely full of secrets. Don't tell anyone.) Not to mention, it's become a huge pop culture thing, whether you're looking at Stella & Bow's recent Mean Girls collection, or that infamous Brandy Melville shirt. Mean Girls is a staple and symbol of teenagerhood.
I think part of the genius of Mean Girls is that it doesn't flinch. Nothing is sugarcoated. Regina rules with an iron fist and a sharp tongue, Gretchen desperately needs attention, and Karen is just along for the ride. Janice has a well-earned grudge, and Damien is The Keeper of The Pink Shirt. Kady just wants to survive the jungle. The sheer cruelty that girls especially can inflict on each other is shown in all it's glory, from the opening moments to the great Burn Book Goes Kaboom scene (Honestly, I would leave the south side for that). But it also shows the confrontation, and that, I think, is what makes this film so great. It's not wrapped up with a bow. How many times do you wish there was a gym scene for your life? "Raise your hand if you've ever felt personally victimized by Regina George." Or maybe a trust drop where you can just tell it like it is, minus the cake baking? There's a lesson in there somewhere.
Tina Fey wrote a film that resonates in a way most adults couldn't grasp. Most adults don't, as a matter of fact. My mum likes the movie, but she doesn't really understand my need to wear pink every Wednesday, or why I laugh and say "Stop trying to make it happen. It's not going to happen." any time some new thing comes out that's just ridiculous. It's funny to her, but it's not canon. She's also not a teenage girl. (Surprise.)
Today is Mean Girls' 10th birthday. And it's a Wednesday, which is incredibly cosmic. So I'm going to wear pink, watch my favorite movie and call my girl friends just to tell them I think they're grool and that they definitely don't need to lose three pounds.
And you? You can totally sit with me.