The Mean Girls EffectDavid Jin Mean Girls is a 2004 film about the life of a popular high school girl. The teen comedy is considered by many high schoolers to be a legendary movie that depicts a dream high school that is ideal for many of today’s youth. The film centers around 4 junior girls called the plastics. They are pretty and preppy, popular and legendary in the school. They are worshipped like goddess by the students of the school because of their fame, riches, and popularity.
However, the group of mean girls live up to their name. They are nasty, trashy and downright evil at times. Revenge is their middle name, and they will not hesitate to throw some of their best friends under the bus at a seconds notice, literally throw them under a bus. They gossip, spread terrible rumors and exclude their friends from cliques on purpose. However, this movie has had a big effect on the public, especially the youth and the younger generation.
The ideal life of the plastics in high school has created a lust for popularity among teenagers and also has showed teenage girls that being ‘mean’ will get you friends, popularity and fame in the complicated world that is high school. To begin with, Mean Girls has caused teenagers in high school to embark on a quest for popularity, in some cases, an unhealthy quest. Studies show that the depictions of popularity by movies like Mean Girls, where an epitome of perfection is established, cause teenagers to strive for that image.
Mean Girls and other similar movies are causing an unhealthy strive for popularity in teenagers. A study shows that after watching mean girls, females 14-16 are more likely to have thoughts of insecurity about their weight, attractiveness and popularity. High schools have also reported increased numbers of cases of eating disorders since the movie has come out, a direct result of the image and message that the movie conveys to the teenagers and high school students watching.
In addition, Mean Girls and other movies have glorified being ‘mean’ and nasty which has created a negative image for the teenagers of our time. A society fed by these kinds of movies is teaching teenagers that being aggressive and nasty can boost their social status and also, as depicted by these movies, is the cool and popular thing to do. The movie also commends popular cliques and ‘fakeness’ and sends a message that popularity is everything, and that girls must strive for it always. In regards to Mean Girls and its effect on the younger generation, it has caused a glorification of being trashy and nasty, as made teenage girls insecure about themselves and has also conveyed the message of ‘popularity at all costs’, even if you have no real friends. Mean Girls and other similar movies have become legendary in high schools and have promoted negative images to teenagers everywhere. “I knew how this could be solved in the real world, but this was girl world. All the fighting had to be sneaky and nasty. ” As shown, the movie (although a really good movie) passes on a bad image to teenagers everywhere and has caused many problems in our society.