Monday, 31 March 2014

STYLE DISSECTION: PRETTY IN PINK





I've always been pretty open about my love of John Hughes - we were inspired to set our first album in a fictional town we called Condale by the fact Hughes based all his films in the fictional town of Shermer Illinois - and there are references to his movies in a lot of our songs.  He was an awesome man.  HOWEVER, as much as I love Pretty In Pink, I have a few issues with it.  Well, actually, one major issue.  Blaine.  

If you haven't seen Pretty In Pink and are planning to then please don't read the rest of this blog.  Everyone else, hi, nice to have you here. 

OK so Pretty In Pink is the Cinderella story of Andie Walsh, a poor girl from the wrong side of the tracks (literally, there are train tracks at the opening of the film and Andie's house is right next to them).  This wonderful girl who only wears pink SEE WHAT THEY DID THERE over the course of the film inexplicably - in my opinion - falls for Blaine McDonough, a spineless beige normcore yuppie.  

In case you're not getting it yet, I really don't like Blaine.  

I would much rather Andie ended up with either Duckie - her hilarious if slightly needy best friend, played by Jon Cryer, or Steff, Blaine's best friend who has secretly been trying to get with Andie for years without Blaine's knowledge.  Steff is played brilliantly by James Spader, one of my favourite actors.  In the film he manages to play a horrible bigoted creep that I still sort of want to get the girl.  

Anyway, I'm now going to argue these points further using the wardrobe of the characters. 

This is Andie. 








She buys most of her clothes secondhand and alters them to make amazing new outfits, which always feature something pink.  She's fond of lace collars, hats, hoop earrings, maxi skirts and florals.  She's sassy and smart and doesn't seem to care what anyone else thinks of her.  Although her feelings are still hurt by these two uber-popular uber-rich girls in her class who insist on uber-bullying her. 


I love that green hawaiian shirt though. 

Andie lives with her dad in her perfect pink bedroom...




...And spends most of her days with her best buddy Duckie, who is also from the wrong side of the tracks.  I'm as envious of Duckie's wardrobe as I am of Andie's.  Look at this guy. 







He wears blazers with the sleeves rolled up, a hat perched precariously behind his quiff, waistcoats/vests, round sunglasses and of course his dirty white duck shoes worn with big thick socks. 




Duckie is a great guy, he's the kind of amazing person that will lipsync to Otis Redding in the record shop where his best friend/one true love works, just to entertain her. 


I LOVE HIM SO MUCH.  

Weirdly though, Andie is pretty unaffected by this performance, in fact she actually seems to find it sort of exacerbating and makes this face:


That very same night she goes on her first date with Blaine, a man so uninspired he dresses only in shades of blue and beige.  He's like the 80's version of Season-One-Dawson-Leery.  Look:

BEIGE AND GREY


BEIGE AND BLUE


BEIGE AND PURPLE


BEIGE AND BLUE (AGAIN)


I mean, seriously guys, I know it's part of his 80's casual rich boy/preppy look, and sometimes it works, but I have a theory that it was the costume department's way of saying, "This guy is not good enough for Andie".  And when Andie is with him, she's beige.  The only time in the entire film when she's not wearing pink is on their first date when he takes her to Steff's awful (but amazing) house party.  She wears a grey matching skirt and jacket with pearls.  


Whereas when she's with Duckie it's like their outfits are riffing off each other in a wonderful expression of their characters. 


Yes, those are little silver pigs hanging off her top.  She found those pigs somewhere, liked them, thought, "these would look good on my pink cardigan", then actually sewed them on there. Or should I say, sowed. 


(This is my favourite of Andie's outfits in the film.  Look at those trousers, and I love this lace top she puts over everything and then tops off with an embellished cardigan). 


Apparently John Hughes initially planned to have Duckie and Andie end up together and somewhere in Hollywood there exists a cut of the film where that happens.  But test audiences wanted her to end up with Blaine instead (*shakes fist at Test Audiences*) so they re-shot the film and no one ever saw the Duckie ending.  Which is a massive shame, not only because Duckie looks totally babe-ing in the final prom scene. 



They're meant to be together. 




(Andie made her prom dress herself, of course).  Here is a screen-grab gif montage of her getting ready for Prom:


And she wears these shoes and tights with the dress.  PINK EXPLOSION. 


Oh, and speaking of Gifs, this is how Blaine introduces himself to Andie in the library. 


OK, I guess that's kind of cool, but it's also a bit OTT/creepy, isn't it?  

And after this Amstrad exchange Blaine stands up and looks so insanely pleased with himself, "Oh hi, I'm a beige superhero". 


Now.  Steff.  I need to say this first, he's awful.  But damn, he can wear a linen suit. 


Andie's bag <3.  

Also the other thing you need to know about Steff is that the more evil he's being, the less buttons he has done up on his shirt. 

A bit evil: 



Slightly more evil:


Seriously serious about being evil:


So evil he's not even wearing a shirt, he's just wearing a robe, boxer shorts, and is drinking whisky and watching cartoons at his own house party. 



One of my favourite moments in the film is when Steff and Duckie brawl in the hallway.  The reason they're fighting is because Duckie has overheard Steff telling Blaine that he should forget about Andie and not bring her to house parties anymore.  But we know the real reason Steff is saying this is because he's jealous and secretly loves Andie.  And of course Duckie openly loves Andie, so it's rejected love fighting more rejected love, and Steff isn't wearing any socks. 







Blaine never fights for Andie.  That's all I'm saying.  Instead he just lies in his beige room on his beige bed drinking out of a beige mug, not calling her on his beige phone. 


Oh, I've just changed my mind THIS is my favourite of Andie's outfits in the film. 






That Korea silk bomber and those shorts are incredibaaaall. 

Oh, who's that lady she's dancing with you ask?  It's only her best friend and boss/mentor/mother figure Iona (played by Annie Potts).  Iona has a different style inspiration every day, she's the frickin' coolest. 











I also love her apartment. 


Anyway look, I know I can't change the past, and I'm sure Andie and Blaine are really happy with each other.  I also accept that Steff was never going to get over his own prejudices to be with her, so he was never really an option...but a girl can dream right?  I mean, look at that body languge - these guys do not look like they'll be together forever:


So let's leave it on some screengrabs of Duckie singing to himself in Andie's bedroom:



And a cute dog. 

7 comments:

  1. Thank you for this post, i love this movie so much it hurts! Your depiction of Blaine was hilarious and so accurate! Andie and Duckie style is purely perfection. Sorry for my english, i'm french...

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  2. Melissa @getoffmysteps31 March 2014 at 21:52

    Love all your insights into this film! Haha I had never thought of Blaine as being so....beige. And I agree, the Korean silk bomber is AMAZING. But I am curious to know your opinion on the finished prom dress because no matter how many times I watch this film, when the dressmaking montage begins and that New Order song begins, every single time I am willing for the dress to be amazing, but it just isn't. :( And I feel bad that Iona's dress got cut up for that.

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  3. I love you. I love Pretty in Pink. I love this.
    He is just...so beige.
    I think I might be in love with Duckie. By might I mean am :)
    Love this x

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  4. Awwww! I wish they would release the alternate ending. I always thought she and Duckie should get together, go to art school and become amazing designers. :)

    LOOOOVE the lip sinc!

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  5. You are a person of my own heart. Andie's style inspired my style, and now I'm pursuing fashion design as a career. I'd like to think that Andie got Blaine so I could have Duckie. :) One can dream, ya know.
    A+ post. 10/10 would recommend <3

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  6. Love this post! The description of Blaine was spot on hahaha. I think Iona would be my favourite character in the film, simply because Andie was just stupid enough to choose Blane over Duckie.

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  7. One of the best fashion inspired movies of all time! Such a great post. I am loving your analysis of the movie and all the screen stills took me on a little trip down nostalgia lane. Thanks for sharing!

    Shelbee
    www.shelbeeontheedge.com

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