Where's Jack Ryan?

Who will replace Jack Ryan? And, please let me not have to watch another episode of Jessie!!!

For our last date night (in December...) MacGyver and I went to see the movie "This is 40".  I had seen the previews (both rated and unrated), and was dying to see it!  As I have a far stupider sense of humor, I basically laughed through the whole damn thing--including two episodes of laughing so hard I was crying, and one episode where I may (or may not) have slightly peed myself laughing (I blame the Wild Man for this problem).  MacGyver--not so much.  Yes, he admitted, some of the scenes were pretty funny.  And, others were very familiar (did we not have almost the same disagreement about music the other day?  Where the kids and I were rockin' out to Lady Gaga and MacGyver made his semi-annual statement that no good music has been made since 1978...)  But, he thought most of the movie was almost painful to watch with all the effort put into trying to be funny.


Oh, well.  Apparently I have married a man with more "sophisticated" humor and taste in music than I.


Anywho--"This is 40" got me a bit nostalgic for the 1980's and early 1990's for some reason.  I think it's because Judd Apatow and Leslie Mann nailed some of the sturm und drang of becoming a middle-aged Generation X'er.  And, well, MacGyver's assertion that there's no good music these days...  A few days later as I was downloading Ryan Adams' "Lucky Now" (totally awesome song!), I found myself making my way to Peter Gabriel's "In Your Eyes".


I mean, please!!  What Gen X'er doesn't remember that song!  What girl growing up in the '80s didn't dream of John Cusack holding up a boom box in their front lawn, blasting "In Your Eyes" for all the neighbors to hear?  We grew up not thinking of Romeo and Juliet whispering sweet nothings to each other from a balcony in Italy--we grew up expecting Lloyd Dobler serenading Diane Court with lyrics about her eyes being "the doorway  to a thousand churches".


And, we grew up hoping to find Jack Ryan on our door step with a cake for our 16th birthday.


What Gen X "girl" didn't feel like Sam Baker at some point--watching with their own personal Long Duk Dong find a girlfriend before we could find our own Jake Ryan?  What Gen X "boy" didn't feel like Lloyd, pining after a girl he thought was out of his league?


And, who among our generation, didn't TOTALLY related to at least one character in The Breakfast Club?


I remembered how much I loved (and still love) these movies, and how John Hughes (and  Cameron Crowe)  seemed to really speak to my generation.  I was amazing to us that a "grown up" would "get us" so well.  Our insecurities.  Our feelings of isolation.  Our longings. Our fashion trends....


Now, as I sit with my little Drama Queen and Wild Man on the sofa, and watch yet another rerun of Jesse or Good Luck Charlie, I wonder what director or screenwriter will capture their generation.  Who will be the DQ's Jack Ryan?  Who will be the WMB's Claire Standish?  Who will be their "Brat Pack"?  What song, in 20 or 30 years, will make then stop in their tracks, close their eyes, and remember their teen years the way that "In Your Eyes" (and "Don't You (Forget About Me)") does for me and so many of my female friends.  What dress, or lack thereof, will bring back the same feelings that I have of the prom in Pretty in Pink?


And, what director, when my kiddos are parents themselves, will make them laugh until they pee themselves?

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Christine Wagner February 19, 2013 at 04:54 PM
Readers--I was experiencing a total "brain fart" when I wrote this. Please change "Jack" to "Jake"!! I can't believe a Gen X'er like me made this typo!!!! :-)
Maryann March 06, 2013 at 04:20 PM
I agree! Although most days, I can't wait for my kids to STOP peeing themselves :)And Jake, Jack--whatever. I didn't remember his name anyway, but I knew exactly who you meant!


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