When a sequel to Mean Girls was announced last week, I started thinking of all the ways technology has changed since the 2004 original, and began to wonder how various classic teen film characters would handle today's methods of communication.
You don't really think of Mean Girls as being painfully dated until you start to consider that the film portrayed high school life without referencing texting or Facebook or Twitter, and that Regina George sought revenge on her friends by printing out pages from the Burn Book and physically distributing them around the school, as opposed to just scanning a copy of the book and sending it to every recipient she could think of. As Irin noted last week, "while the Internet and texting existed when the movie came out, it was all but invisible in Mean Girls, technology has since enabled all sorts of cruel behavior to be disseminated more rapidly than ever."
And while we can probably imagine the damage Regina George could do with a firm grasp on social networking, what of the teen film heroes and villains that came before her? Would today's technology have a positive or a negative impact on their lives? Let's take a look:
Andie Walsh, Pretty In Pink
Pros: Could connect with people outside of her town, easier to find the vintage clothing she loves so much, could start an Etsy store to sell her homemade clothes and supplement the family income while her father looks for work.
Cons: iPods and mp3s might put her employer, the record store Trax, out of business; Regretsy would totally pick apart her homemade prom dress; cell phones would give Duckie a means to annoy her via voicemails, photographs, and texts.
Farmer Ted, Sixteen Candles
Pros: Could probably put his unfortunate gassy dancing incident on YouTube for a few million hits; would probably enjoy starting a Facebook group titled "Girls With Hats Are Just So Vogue," could argue with online strangers over whether or not he is, in fact, King of the Dipshits.
Cons: Would probably be expected to produce actual sex tape, rather than Samantha Baker's underwear, to prove to his idiot freshman friends that he'd slept with her (which he hadn't), would be caught by traffic surveillance tapes driving Jake Ryan's dad's car after drinking and without a license, would most likely be embarrassed forever by his Farmer Ted persona, which will live on through various abandoned MySpace and Xanga blogs.
Veronica Sawyer, Heathers
Pros: If her diary was a blog, people would probably have called the cops on her before her teenage angst bullshit had a body count.
Cons: The internet simply would have been another means for J.D. to manipulate everyone as only a psychopath can.
Kenny "Special K" Fisher, Can't Hardly Wait
Pros: Would be ALL OVER Craigslist missed connections, looking for "the angel that fell from Heaven and landed at Subway so she could buy a mad delicious looking BMT last Saturday night," could keep his pleasure chest filled by auto-ordering at Drugstore.com.
Cons: Would probably be devastated to look at actual sex statistics online regarding women and sex at UCLA.
Can you think of any others? Feel free to post them in the comments below.