The Breakfast Club (1985)

I have seen at least four TV spoofs of this movie before finally watching the source material.

Sitting next to my roommate—the more educated film student of the two of us—I can see the giddy look on her face as she watches me, watching one of her favorite movies for the first time.

I recognize the opening song from a Bob’s Burgers episode. I wonder if this is where the famous fist pump I’ve heard about comes in, but it’s not. Fine, I’ll wait.

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As the resident “bad-boy,” John Bender is driving force of this whole movie. Without him, all we have are four nameless shmucks sitting in silence for 8 hours. However, I’m surprised because I don’t like Bender as much I expected to. His sass only works with Vernon, because he is objectively an asshole. With everyone else, his insults often cross a line. Especially with Claire.

Side note: who gives out eight hour detention?

I like when the two love interests initially dislike each other, but there’s a difference between dislike and blatant disrespect. I don’t see why Claire would be attracted to that. Also Bender sticking his face in her crotch was insanely creepy, was it not?

That being said, I also appreciate characters that skew towards being unlikeable. And I appreciate that there are things I love, hate, and love to hate about each of them. It makes their character growth all the more significant. And Bender does change, I think, at least a little.

I was not expecting this movie to be so dark. I shouldn’t be surprised, but after the fun antics of the hallway-heist, I was really in the feel-good spirit. But that’s why this movie is so iconic. The story – the characters – have depth. The campfire-esque bonding scene between them was sweet and tragic, funny and heartfelt, and just very honest.

And immediately followed by a dance party.

So finally, I have seen the inspiration for every televised “bottle episode.” I know where that dancing Gif is from. And most importantly, Brian just came up with The Breakfast Club like a goddamn wordsmith.

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