"And it's like I'm supposed to be all happy 'cause she's wearing a backpack, you know?"
To me, one of the more iconic movies of the 90s, and of my college years, is Swingers. Out in 1996, it ushered in a new era of bowling shirts, swing music, and people being so money they don't even know it. And, of course, something that hasn't died, even 14 years later...Vegas, baby, Vegas!
The backpack line, well, that one got me because we all had our little backpacks in the mid-90s, and really got me thinking about this movie. Forget shoulder purses, it was all about the little pack. There was even a song, "Little Black Backpack," immortalizing the trend. But, yeah, when Swingers hit, the trend was relatively new and we were all starting to learn to love it.
It's funny watching this movie now. Mikey has to call into his answering MACHINE, using a calling card to save money...no automated voicemail (it existed, but was pricey), no cell phones (they also existed, but very few people had them outside of their car), definitely no PDAs. The Internet barely existed outside of AOL, so no one in this movie has a computer. If anything, this movie demonstrates how different it is to communicate in 2010...
Some things haven't changed so much...the 2 (or 3) day rule, which may have actually been popularized by this movie. The not getting over being dumped. The struggle for a 20-something to find their place, their success in the world. Everyone in LA being in cars (which begs a question for me...if they are driving all over the place, without carpooling...do they not drink that much? Is it common to not get too drunk in SoCal because someone has to drive?). Boys sitting around playing video games, getting into real world fights when one beats the other in the fake world (though...the graphics in the games have gotten MUCH better!).
It's funny watching this movie now, and thinking how much it changed things in my little college world. We had parties where the guys were all in the bowling shirts and we girls tried to learn to swing dance. The music changed. And the way we talked totally changed. It was definitely a fun time!
I'll just go back to being the little bunny in the corner, and let someone else be the big bad bear.
*BTW...warning...googling "Swingers" to find images for this movie brings up some very, very disturbing stuff.