How did I miss this? Shag

So my husband is watching this movie with Phoebe Cates and Bridget Fonda, and OK, I get sucked in: It’s a period piece titled Shag (1989), co-written by SNL’s Terry Sweeney, so one’s expectations are extra-low.

It’s actually a cute movie so far, although I might have to write later about the rapeyness, but I want to point something out. The girl in the video with the sleeveless high-necked top and the yellow clamdiggers? She’s the fat girl. Her character name is actually Pudge.

That embarrassing tub of lard is Annabeth Gish. She’s not even 1980s movie fat. WTF, Zelda Barron.

13 responses to “How did I miss this? Shag

  1. I have not seen this movie in a million years. I must have blocked the rape out of my memory, because I don’t remember it. But I do remember Pudge not being fat, only her thinking she was fat because she was heavier as a child. I guess being fat myself, it stuck out in my memory more?

  2. I’m trying to find anything about it online now because I’m just so baffled by how I blocked it out of my memory (but this interestingly enough would not be the first time I blocked out a sexual assault from a fictional story from my memory. I also did it the first time I read a certain book that I don’t want to spoil for anyone.) Anyway, googling and combination of “shag” and “date rape” was so not helpful!

  3. Annabeth Gish played the not-so fat fat girl in Mystic Pizza.

  4. LOL, emmawolf! I will learn from your Google mistake. 🙂 Note that I have only seen the movie to the half-hour mark or so, when Bridget Fonda is trying to fight off the townie, and basically only escaped getting raped when the tough townie chicks dragged her out of the car to yell at her and cover her in whipped cream. Not sure where the scene went from there. I hope that’s as bad as the movie gets, but considering Phoebe Cates gets pawed after specifically telling Moai Headed Townie to stop doing so, there’s not a whole lot of respect for women’s bodily autonomy in this movie.

  5. I loved Shag! Two things:

    1) Part of Pudge’s backstory is that she used to be fat, and her mom put her on crazy diets and she got skinny, but everyone still calls her Pudge. During the big dance contest at the end, one of the judges is her friend’s mother, and her husband says, “Is that Pudge?” “No, Pudge is fat.” So she’s NOT actually considered fat–she just used to be.

    2) If I remember the townie scene correctly, they just drag her out of the car, pour booze down her throat and rough her up. Just girl-on-girl. She was never raped or assaulted by anyone but the boho townies. (Although I’m sure there was scads of inappropriate gropiness.)

  6. We need a new category: Movies I did not actually watch.

  7. Bridget Fonda is physically fighting a townie guy, begging him to stop because it’s against her religion, so I think the townie girls saved her from rape for sure. Then they put whipped cream down her shirt for some reason. Don’t know what happened past that point because I had to stop the movie there — it was just a little too exciting for Mike. 😉

    And one of the townie girls calls Pudge a fatass, so I think she might actually be supposed to be at least chubby. Her pencilneck townie suitor obviously doesn’t think so, though!

  8. I totally adored this movie. I, too, didn’t remember the date rape scene, just the fun music and dancing. I remember Pudge being called that because she USED to be fat though. As all mean girls tend to, they like to remind those that were not always perfect of their imperfections. Pudge’s being that she used to not be thin. And the mean girl, of course, knows that mentioning that she might be overweight is a trigger for Pudge and making her upset.

    • That’s true, Cleo. Townie girl might just have hit on Pudge’s sensitive spot by luck. Of course, anyone hates being called a fatass, so just about anyone would respond to that insult.

  9. Now that I recall, I think the townie was one of the girls’ boyfriends. So she was saved from a rape, by a jealous girlfriend.

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