I was sitting alone in my room, watching When In Rome starring the adorable Kristen Bell (doesn’t she look like a female, young Dylan Sprouse? Am I the only one to see that?) and the hunky Josh Duhamel. Anyways, in one of the scene at the start where her sister gets married to a guy she’s met like in two weeks, Kristen’s character meets Josh’s character and they talk, flirt and dance (as it always happens in rom coms) and you can see they were starting to fall for each other.
When in Rome
It was all sweet and all that, but come on, that doesn’t happen in real life. Maybe it’s happened to one of you who are reading this, but it definitely hasn’t happened to me.
All the weddings I’ve attended were with friends or family, and I was too busy stuffing my face with food, and watching the bride and groom look at each other with so much love. Everyone else was there doing the same thing too, I guess, because no Josh Duhamels came to my rescue and danced with me.
I started to think of other rom com cliches that give us high expectations of romance, which just disintegrates the moment we realise that our lives are not like movies. Here are 10 cliches that I think are over the top, probably don’t happen in real life and are the typical cliche of a rom com (in no particular order). This list is based on just my thoughts, and is not in any way, judging anyone’s lifestyle. Most of them are only things that relate to me, and do not happen in my life, so if it offends you, I am sorry in advance. Take this as a satire piece and enjoy it.
(FYI ALL OF THE GIFS IN THIS POST ARE MADE BY ME, SO ENJOY MY EFFORTS AS WELL :P)
1. ‘Falling in love at a wedding’ scenes
Yes, I have issues with this so I’m mentioning it again as the number 1 difference between real life and romantic comedies. Why is it that every time there’s a wedding, it’s a setting for a love scene, or a falling in love scene or some kind of revelation scene?
Why can’t it just be someone going to the wedding for the free food and drinks and just enjoying that? I definitely enjoy weddings with more alcohol and amazing performances.
Also, they all seem to be in the same color scheme. Look at the scene with Louisa and Will below and the one with Josh and Kristen above (sorry, I forgot the names of their characters because I was busy coming up with ideas for this post while watching the movie).
All I know is I struggle finding proper lighting to take selfies and pictures with my friends/family.
Me Before You
2. The main female characters always have a sad single life until they meet the love of their lives
This is one of my pet peeves when watching romantic comedies – because of the portrayal of the bleakness of singlehood. I’ve been single for some time and yeah, sure, there are days when it’s bleak as heck and although it’s not because you’re alone, but more because you wish there’s someone at home for you to come home to after having a bad day, there are so many other days that I rush home from work and social activities just to curl up in my bed to read a book.
It’s like being single is the worst and most boring time of your life and it can only be made better by having the love of your life. It’s not miserable to be alone and rom coms need to stop making that a cliche, so that single people like us can live freely and not be judged for doing things alone sometimes – and liking it!
How To Be Single
3. The token drunk, sex-fueled, potty mouthed best friend
Judy Greer, I’m talking about you – actually, the characters you usually play. The main female character is always the nice girl just trying to find love in this hard world, and the best friend is always someone who sleeps around and will probably never find love. She’s always drinking or pushing the main character to drink. She always has been through countless walks of shames and she runs off her mouth to the point of being too brutally honest that we start to hate the character, but don’t.
I pity those characters though, as there are times I feel like I’m the Judy Greer character to my friends who are more demure and don’t cuss (except for the sex-fueled part – in that area, the tank’s empty). In fact, I was just telling this to my friend the other day when she was talking to me about her significant other, and I made some self-deprecating joke about drinking. The fourth wall of my story broke and I told her, I’m that token drunk, potty-mouthed friend. Will we ever find love, all us Judy Greers of the world? I f#%ing think not.
4. The Friends-Turned-Lovers Trope
This one makes people think that guys and girls can never just be platonic friends. Somehow, always, if you’re really close that closeness will turn into love. Yes, you can love your friend, but you don’t have to end up with that person. It’s no wonder so many guys I know say that they can’t be just friends with girls. They either date them or just stay as acquaintances.
I’ve had close guy friends who are just friends until now and people would say things like, ‘why don’t you date him? You guys are so close, maybe there could be something more?’
No. Sometimes, two people can enjoy each other’s company without wanting to rip each other’s clothes off.
Made of Honor
5. Grand declarations of love
At the top of the Empire State building, on a boat at someone else’s wedding, on a hot air balloon in front of a camera that is broadcasting to the whole nation, singing on the benches using the PA system so the whole school knows … you get the idea.
A love story is not a love story if no one declares their love grandly. There’s no such thing as watching a guy drop his cereal and quickly eat it within 5 seconds before you realize that you love him and then say ‘I love you’. No, you have to keep that feeling inside and wait till there are people around to cheer on the both of you.
The Ugly Truth
6. Being oblivious to obvious love
Speaking of grand declarations, don’t forget another cliche where everyone in the world knows that you both have feelings for each other except the both of you. Or, in other words, the guy shows his interest, and the girl is completely oblivious to it.
Truthfully, I’ve used this cliche in my writing as well, so I plead guilty and I repent. I guess this could happen in real life too, because you can’t be sure of how the other person is feeling, so you play it safe. But, it’s an age old cliche – let it die.
7. Falling in love in a weekend
WHAT! WHY? How do people even fall in love in one whole weekend??? Is it really that easy to fall in love?
The main characters meet on a plane ride and go off on a weekend adventure and by the end of it, they realize they’re in love with each other. The bitchy boss goes off for a weekend with her assistant only to fall in love with him during that weekend instead of all the late nights they’ve worked together.
You know the kind that makes you wanna do an Elsa and say:
8. Falling in love with an a-hole (pardon my french)
What is it with rom coms and most movies that I’ve seen that seem to perpetuate the notion that the man you belong with are the ones who treat you like shit?
You can have the best guy ever to crush on but somehow you’d fall in love and end up with the guy who sexualizes women – a rude misogynist – and it all seem to be acceptable.
The main female lead would dump or change interests from the nice sweet guy to the obnoxious guy who’s been giving her advice or is a jerk to her because that means he has character or personality. Being a jerk does not mean having more personality than a bland guy.
It’s so easy for the female lead to forgive anything done by the male lead – because they are supposed to end up together.
10 Things I Hate About You
9. Dumping/breaking up with significant other for the main lead
Which incidentally brings me to how easily main characters dump someone they’re in a relationship with for the main character they’d end up with, with no repercussions or even guilt.
She could be at a church, preparing to get married or engaged to be married, but somehow she’d ditch the man she’s supposed to be married to and run back to the person she ‘loves’ from the start. Come on, how cruel are people to leave someone else just for another jerk? Have some conscience. At least don’t lead that other person on in the first place. Why don’t you just be single if you’re unsure of how you feel?
Or at least, tell the suffering party way in advance before you ditch them.
Sweet Home Alabama
10. Career driven woman are always alone
You can’t have both career and a love life. If you do, you’re considered lucky. If you don’t, it’s always because you’re the dragon lady – a career-driven, work-obsessed woman.
This is one thing that annoys me more than anything else, as it makes us think that being a powerful woman would make men not want us and that we’d end up at the top alone. It seems that the only thing that makes us worthy is having a relationship, not the job you’ve worked at for 10 years, or the dream you’ve finally achieved after waiting for so long.
The Devil Wears Prada
So! That’s all I have for today.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a hater… just a nitpicker. I still love watching rom coms for the entertainment purposes, but I’ll never think of it as a way of life or even learn anything from it.
All it does is to serve as fluffy fodder for our daily lives – a show to watch while having dinner, a story to laugh at as we go on with our own lives.
If you have any other thoughts or things that annoy you about rom coms, do comment below.
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Cover image courtesy of Randomly Organized Pop.
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