jump to navigation

Tommy Ross and the Prom Date February 27, 2007

Posted by kelly in Carrie, teen films.

This is just a quick post to comment on the common theme of the hot, popular guy asking the shy, awkward girl to prom. It’s interesting because I expected Carrie to immediately fall for Tommy Ross’ advances. Instead, she immediately suspects trickery and even after the gym teacher tells Carrie that perhaps Tommy actually likes her, Carrie still refuses to be his prom date until she has to agree to get him to leave. My expectations arise from the scenario that is common in many contemporary teenage films such as “She’s All That,” “10 Things I Hate About You,” and “Never Been Kissed.” In all of these films a boy asks a supposedly pathetic and ostracized girl to the prom either to win a bet, earn money, or to trick her for their own (and their pretty, popular girlfriend’s) amusement. In the former two, as well as in “Carrie,” the advances of the popular boy lead to tremendous evolutions in the female character – she undergoes a huge makeover and her classmates begin to see her in a new light. Of course it is a male that aids in her femininization. It is interesting though, that only in these more modern versions of this motif does the girl actually fall for it. Although in “Carrie,” the protagonist does eventually fall prey to the cruelty of the popular girls, at least she is not originally gullible and ignorant. I’m just wondering why the more contemporary films, the ones we would expect to be more progressive, are the ones that present the women as easily fooled and victimized.

I’m sure this is an oversimplification, I just had it in my head and thought I’d share it!



1. robynbahr - March 1, 2007

You bring up an interesting point. In some ways, I think it all goes to back to the root idea that woman is borne of man.

First you see it with Eve being fashioned from Adam’s rib. Then myth of Pygmalion and Galatea – “Pygmalion fell in love with an ivory statue he had crafted of his own hands, and in answer to his prayers, the goddess Aphrodite brought it to life and united the couple in marriage.” (Wikipedia) Then those stories become Taming of the Shrew and My Fair Lady – man forms woman into the person he wants her to be – which in turn become films like Carrie, Ten Things, She’s All That, and Never Been Kissed. Woman needs to see herself in man’s eyes before she can be herself, or something like that. Man needs to guide woman into becoming a whole person. It seems like a running theme throughout literature.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: