** This blog has moved to myopinionsareimportant.com **
(The following is my contribution to the writing project at Middle Zone Musings, which is a blog you should read always. The project is simple: write a blog post with the topic What life lesson(s) have you learned from an unusual source? I’m not sure if this is the type of thing Robert Hzurek had in mind. Ah well.)
Teen Girl Squad, a flash animation series on Homestar Runner, follows the lives and untimely demises of four teenage girls:
- Cheerleader – the popular, attractive girl who is the ringleader of the squad,
- So-and-so – the academic one who avoids being academic in order to fit in,
- Whats-her-face – who has bad fashion sense and is the outsider of the group, and
- The Ugly One! (Yes, she really is called that.)
Sarz has previously mentioned she most identifies with Whats-her-face (the one wearing pants). That puzzles me a bit. Perhaps we’ll see why as we go through each episode in the series.
What I Have Learned From Teen Girl Squad
Teenage girls are obsessed with appearance and have crushes on boys.
Watching cartoon girls get stomped on by dinosaurs is funny.
Clouds have teeth.
Teenage boys are dumb. (“You must be girls.”)
Girls like shopping. (no, really!)
Op shops are not considered fashionable.
Girl crushes are ridiculous.
Girls are ridiculous full stop. (Discuss.)
Cartoon girls upended in the sand, being used as a perch by evil birds, is strangely entertaining.
Girls with bad fashion sense get abandoned by their friends.
Teenage girls sometimes pass themselves off as older than they really are in order to attract older boys.
Peer pressure drives girls to do insane things. Probably not as insane as jumping into a lion’s mouth, though.
This one was less educational than the others. Sorry.
When playing a bass guitar, watch that it doesn’t turn into a shark and eat you.
In high school, are friends really friends?
Without Cheerleader around, the other girls are free from pressure.
“The tyranny is over!”
Teenage romance is completely ridiculous. (Or did that get covered in a prior episode? Or all the episodes?)
Parties are much more interesting if there are boys involved.
Beware of maniacs in speedos.
“She likes cloth” is a good band name.
“Say baby, you want to find a remote access point with me?” is a good pick up line.
Texting from three feet away is silly.
Whats-her-face finds true love in this episode, which is why Sarz likes it so much.
I suspect I learned something about the nature of girls by watching this series of animations. Judge for yourselves by the comments above. Or, perhaps, be shocked and stunned that I have just learned everything I know about women from a series of very silly flash cartoons.
In all seriousness, this series brought back memories of high school for me, with its pettiness, its peer pressure, the focus on popularity and the strange dynamic in play between boys and girls. Thank goodness times change and priorities change.
But how much do things change really? How much of our lives is focussed on looking good, chasing material things and playing politics in the workplace? I’m not sure the insanity of teenagedom ever goes away – it just becomes more subdued, more channelled.
What is the main thing that characterises teenage life? I would say it is it’s unplanned nature, living for the moment and not thinking much about the future; indeed, barely able to comprehend the future.
Yet what happens when we become adults? How often do we actually think about what we’re doing? Do we have a plan? How often do we stop to consider whether we are fulfilling that plan? How much do we allow our lives to be shaped by the expectations of others?
I’ve been challenged as of late – and I suppose this is only tangentially related to Teen Girl Squad – to have a plan, to know we’re I’m going.
How much of our lives have meaning? How much time do we spend on things that don’t matter?