Molly Ringwald on the gross sexual behavior in Sixteen Candles

Originally published at:


Strange how Weird Science has gotten a pass in this age of reckoning with our not-too-distant past, and not just for the relevant #metoo stuff.


I don’t care what she says…Duckie’s haircut was never acceptable!



Duckie was an incel. Duckie was never acceptable.


It was a problem with almost all the '80s teen movies; certainly all the ones I remember. It’d be easier to list the ones that weren’t advancing rape culture. Assuming there are actually any movies on the list at all from that time…


Duckie was a weirdo, not an incel; and he did get a girl in the end (Kristy Swanson.)

I honestly can’t think of any, and I’m an ‘80’s baby.’


This is something I’ve noticed fairly often in older movies. From today’s perspective there are so many rapists/attempted rapists! Consent seems to be shameful, like if the girl actually said she wants it she’s a slut, so it’s up to the guy to “convince” her that it’s OK to put out.

It’s kind of a problem when I want to show them to my kids because they’re otherwise great movies, but they lionize unhealthy relationship behavior.


It’s not just teen movies, consent was a dirty word back in the 80s.


As quoted directly by Ally Sheedy’s character, Allison:


I love 80’s movies with a passion but the high number of movies that normalize and even glorify stalking, sexual assault, and more is really telling. Yes times were different back then, but that doesn’t excuse the boys will be boys culture that ended up being ingrained in many young guys’ minds. The shit we’re seeing today is a direct consequence of those attitudes and i will not give those movies a pass. Yeah i can still enjoy old movies even with problematic themes but i don’t for a second ignore that shit… it bothers and annoys the hell out of me.


Ferris was a Righteous Dude!



Non rape culture advancing 80’s teen movies I can think of

Red Dawn (Yes its counts as a teen movie. Brat Pack vs. the Commies)

Fast Times at Ridgemont High comes to mind. (the statutory rape of the protagonist is not seen favorably)

Ferris Bueller’s Day off is pretty chaste in general (already done by MikeK Star)

AFAIK all the sex in Porky’s was consensual.

Losin It shows that trying to slip a “spanish fly” to a girl could result in a blowtorch to the genitals


As a teen in the 80s, I always hated the teen movies at the time. They seemed to made for all the people I didn’t like, and who didn’t like me.


Right off the top of my head the shower scene in Porky’s was definitely not consensual. Consent doesn’t start at the penis entering the vagina.


I didn’t watch a lot of teen movies in the '80s, but what I did watch left me with seriously icky feelings. (The last couple of years of the '80s being an exception, maybe, in not being consistently awful - the “Heathers” era. But I haven’t seen those movies since either, so they may have just been better in comparison…)

Yeah, it’s true. Looking back, I realized some while ago that notions of consent were pretty ropy (and rapey) back then. Teen movies were the worst only because they more consistently focused on dating/sex issues, not because the adult movies were any better. That, and the teen movies were a novelty, whereas adult movies had been depicting sex as the interactions of aggressive men and resisting women since the beginning of motion pictures. In that respect, '80s movies were more explicit versions of '20s movies. Which is weird, given that the '60s and '70s should have changed things.

That’s probably the whole list, too. Though didn’t the Porky’s series (none of which I’ve seen) revolve around spying (or attempted) on naked girls, etc.? It wasn’t just about the depictions of actual sex, but more general attitudes.


I cracked up at the scene when Jackie Earl Haley went to the Tijuana pharmacy trying to buy it and, unable to speak Spanish, kept referring to it as “Bzzz Espanol”.


Despite the ending, I’m sticking with the interpretation that Duckie wasn’t in love with Andi but was in love with the idea of being Andi in all her retro girl fabulousness. I like to think he grew up to be a happy drag queen who breaks out a version of Andi’s famous dress for special occasions.

That movie’s portrayal of teenage sexuality still holds up as realistic today.

In re: Ringwald’s comments, she’s on-point as usual about these things. Pointing out the continuing over-all value of the Hughes movies doesn’t mean one has to support the more unsavoury aspects (see also Long Duk Dong).


There’s one!

Given his FABULOUS lip sync to Try a Little Tenderness, I totally agree; Duckie was a drag queen in denial.

(Although that dress was hideous, even for the 80’s.)


Ms Ringwold has turned out to be a national treasure imho.