ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

8 Clichés in American Teen Movies

Updated on December 16, 2019
Priya Barua profile image

Pursuing a rather tedious subject called law, Priya Barua still tries to find time to follow her passion for blogging.

I grew up watching American Teen Movies. I loved movies like Princess Diaries, The Prince and Me, The Duff, A Cinderella Story, Another Cinderella Story, LOL, etc. The more I watched, the more I realized that there were few clichés that were omnipresent in these movies. And, here's my list.

Source

1. Labels Exist

Here is the first cliché in American Teen Movies. You are labelled as you enter high school. The popular kids are either rich or hot, preferably both, and the guys in the clique are either in the Football or Basketball Team and the girls are on the Cheerleading Team. That, unfortunately, is the basis for getting into the popular group. And then you have the lesser known beings, as they call them, the ‘nerds’, technically, these super brilliant kids who for some reason are also dirt poor. Then there exists a class of Goths who are into punk rock and Green Day with emo hairstyles and black leather clothing, their roles merely to show a bit of variety in the school campus. And of course, every school needs a bunch of weirdos who play an auxiliary role in the environment, like being in the school band or eating trash out of the bin or something. You know the guys I am talking about. So the labels are hot, rich, nerd, goth and weird. There is no in-between like talented or sweet or anything but only these five rigid categories, a structure somewhat reminiscent of the caste system that existed in the Indian subcontinent.

2. Grades Are Secondary

The second cliché instructs you to focus on your life by trying to find your Prince Charming. In High School. I would have laughed only if it weren’t so stupid that you can’t even laugh. Be positively insular and self-oriented and self-focused and think about the guy or girl you love instead of thinking about your grades which will ultimately take you to college and later, by God's grace, land you a job. But no, grades are too secondary to even think about, isn’t it? I begin to wonder if I have ever watched an American Teen Movie where they discuss their plans to go to college. Sigh.

Source

3. Frat Parties are a ‘Thing’

I am sure that they are a thing, but the way they show it in the movies seems like it is the be-all and end-all constitution of going to school. Drinking beer out of plastic red cups, playing beer pong, picking up girls left and right every other week keeps me wondering when they actually study. Or, if they study at all. I went through my entire schooling without going to a single frat party (not that we had any) and I didn’t die. But then again, here, we don’t believe in wiling our time by drinking and playing beer pong.

4. The Wonder of Sports

The fourth cliché is about the importance of sports. But only a certain sport. Ever watched a teen movie where our protagonist’s love interest was a tennis player? Or a chess player? Or even a swimmer? Neither have I. It seems like American public schools only endorse football or basketball depending on the movie you are watching. And not even football, like the David Beckham football; they play the lame kind of football where you keep pushing other people to get the ball across the line. I am still waiting for the day when the hot, blonde, popular guy plays tennis. Now, that’s a sexy game. It is indeed a shame no one realizes this.

5. Experimenting with Alcohol...

Or cigarettes. Or drugs. Or technically anything that gets you high and wasted. While it is perfectly normal for a teenager to experiment with a lot of things, it is baffling how every movie would have a particular scene of the protagonist or her love interest or her love interest’s friend experimenting with the local crack. I am not moral policing here, nada, not by the slightest, but it just seems kind of a redundant inclusion in most movies. Never seen anyone experimenting with different study methods. But then again, that would make a boring watch.

Source

6. Rebelling is the New Black

Ah…those blissful teenage years when you slammed the door in front of your parents, and then went to college and realized that slamming the door was a bad idea because your parents are now on a cruise in Italy and you are knee-high in debt. These movies show that rebelling is good. Rebelling is how things are done. Rebelling is what keeps you going. Sorry, you are no Mahatma Gandhi and you ain’t leading your people to freedom. Rebelling for the right things is important; standing your ground for things that matter is important, Not, sneaking away to have sex when your parents are sleeping and you are supposed to sit for your Bio paper tomorrow! That’s pure idiocy enough that I cannot express in any language. Grow up, kid, start taking responsibility for your life. You’ll realize your parents were right in many ways you couldn’t have imagined. Like when they asked you to eat healthy, and you rebelled by guzzling down a 2-litre cola bottle. Not cool, sir.

7. The Art of Zipping your Pants Down

The seventh cliché it seems, is that you have to lose your virginity by the time you are sixteen. Or at least that’s what these movies teach you. Go, find the guy/girl, have some meaningless (or meaningful) sex, break up and go on your separate way. Funny how I so, eloquently, just summed up the entire plot of an entire movie. Crazzy! Why is it so important that you have to lose it before you go to college or on your prom night or whatever these movies seem to indicate? I think it’s perfectly fine if you don’t. Don’t lose your virginity in high school. It’s a choice, and it should always be a choice. But these movies clearly seem to show that it is some kind of ritual. Disheartening, indeed.

Did you lose your virginity in high school?

See results

8. Your Greatest Achievement counts in IRL (Not.)

Teen movies seem to portray that a teenager’s greatest achievement in high school is to go to some fancy Ivy League college….Hhahaahah-No, they portray that a teenager’s greatest achievement in high school is to be crowned Prom King or Prom Queen. If that is not distressing enough, I really don’t know what is. I, and I am certain many would agree with me, that goals should contribute to your growth, it shouldn’t be some lame, random title you would hold for one day in your school and screw up the rest of your life by living in the fringes of society and running around for scraps. Also, don’t annoy the smart boy. He’ll do well, you won’t.

Did you enjoy the article?

See results

© 2018 Priya Barua

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • Priya Barua profile imageAUTHOR

      Priya Barua 

      17 months ago

      Thanks for the comment @Sagheer

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://maven.io/company/pages/privacy

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)