Anyone who's talked to me for five minutes knows that John Hughes is my hero. Slowly, I'm getting around to seeing all of his movies, and this just happens to be the latest. Anyway, I hope y'all enjoy this.
Some Kind of Wonderful
"I knew it!" Freddie yelled. He was always angry when someone broke one of their traditional rites, and as of recent, Carly had been making it worse and worse.
"Freddie, it's not that big of a deal…" Sam tried to say, in her head trying to remember the last time PMS had even come close to having this effect on her.
"No! I understood when she wanted to spend her birthday with Ian, but this is going too far! We've been doing this for years!" he said, pacing like a lunatic around the front room of his apartment.
"Fredward, the only reason we even do this is because we'd rather spend Valentine's Day together than alone," Sam admitted, continuing to change the settings on his phone while he was distracted.
"How do you know I didn't turn down a hot date for tonight?" he said, stopping to look at her. She rolled her eyes and he continued, "Okay, so it's unlikely, but still! I didn't realize this thing was optional!"
"If you want to go out and be alone, that's your business. But personally, I brought my entire John Hughes collection over, and your TV is just begging to be christened," she said, nudging the stack with her foot.
"It's my apartment. I could kick you out if I wanted to," he reminded her. She reminded him with a glance that there was no way he could get her out of there without her own free will.
He sat down and ruffled his hair a little, which she patted down after having a good laugh at the effect it had on his coif, and he shrugged.
"I'm sorry Sam, it's not your fault. And it's not Carly's. I just…I don't like change. I never have. This whole "boyfriend" thing is just throwing me off."
Sam scoffed a little angrily, and Freddie rolled his eyes.
"I told you, it's not because I still have feelings for Carly. I don't. But you still won't believe me, so I don't know why I'm wasting my breath."
"I don't know either," she said, nudging him with a smirk. He smirked back. Had anyone else been around, the moment would have been tense, but instead it felt like a secret that neither would ever want to tell.
"Okay, please tell me you got the snacks?" Sam said, all drama forgotten.
"Is that all you care about?" he asked, joking. He got up and started to forage through a plastic bag on the counter, "Sometimes I think you just want me for my goods!"
"As long as you get the extra butter, you'll always be mine," she smirked, as he threw her a can of Wahoo Punch.
"So if I mistakenly bought Lite Butter?" he asked, already taking the package out to put in the microwave.
She got up and walked over to the counter, "Oh, I would drop you like a hot pocket."
He put the bag in the microwave and started to ruffle through a junk drawer (his mother still didn't think he could manage the child locks) and pulled out a couple flyers for restaurants.
"So what'll it be? Chinese Takeout or Pizza?" he said, turning around the flyers so she could read them. Sam was close to saying both, but she knew they were on a budget.
"I'm feeling classy. Let's go with Chinese," she said, turning to get the popcorn out of the microwave as the cacophony of popping kernels slowed. "And tell them that if they forget my fortune cookie, they're getting a chopstick in a place it doesn't belong."
Freddie rolled his eyes and dialed the number, ordering their usuals. He tried to remember what to take out since Carly was gone, but somehow couldn't remember, and ended up ordering enough food for three. Sam would finish the extra food anyway.
When he came out to the main room, Sam was already putting in a DVD, "Okay, first question. Have you seen any of these movies?"
He took a quick survey of the titles before shaking his head. She groaned, but continued to explain to him, "Well, we'll be working in order from my least favorite to my most favorite. I make no promises on commentary."
She took a moment to reorder the DVDs into quality order: Sixteen Candles, Weird Science, Pretty in Pink, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, The Breakfast Club, and finally Some Kind of Wonderful.
"Okay, I have heard of most of these, but that last one…?" he picked it up to examine it. "Eric Stoltz? Really now? He couldn't even cut it as Marty McFly."
She grabbed the DVD and smacked him over the head with it, to which he mouthed an "Ow!"
"Do not insult my man! I pine for him. I long for him…"
"I need to stop letting you read those cheesy romance novels Carly reads…"
"Hey, they are the only books she has. Otherwise, I'm stuck reading Spencer's old textbooks from his stint in law school. Or I could come over here and read your collection of Doctor Who novelizations."
"…Doctor Who is awesome. And it's the off-season. I have no choice," Freddie responded, turning a little red at the ears.
Sam rolled her eyes and put the DVD in, "Now, there's a little female nudity in this one. I will let you watch it because you haven't been laid in…well Freddo, let's be honest, you've never been laid. But I swear to God, if you so much as smirk, you'll be one step closer to sterilization."
Freddie rolled his eyes and put his feet up on the coffee table, reminding himself to clean up before his mother got home the next night. She was at a conference in Boise, and it was because of this that for the first time, their Valentine's Day Movie Night was at his apartment rather than Carly's.
As the credits opened to what was obviously a stereotypical high school, Freddie began to hope that the movies Sam had picked weren't as cheesy as the movies they usually ended up watching. It warranted a smirk that The Notebook had been marked off of the movie list this year. It was one of Carly's favorites, but even Sam only put up with it because of loyalty. He considered the fact that Sam hadn't brought tissues to mean that tonight was going to be fairly amusing, and that they would be able to cut out the sad bits that always seemed to come about when Carly picked the movies.
And he was glad they were watching John Hughes movies all night. Sam had always been in love with the guy, and he hadn't even bothered to watch any of his movies. Sam said it was shameful that someone who wanted to be a producer had never seen Ferris Bueller's Day Off.
He decided to focus on the movie, and just as he was getting into it, there was a knock on the door. He waited for Sam to pause the movie, but she was too into it, so he rolled his eyes and answered the door. The Asian man from the Chinese restaurant was wearing a pair of those dollar store heart antennae. When he read of the order, he was speaking perfect English, so it seemed the poor man was knowingly suffering from a case of over-amused boss. Freddie gave him a healthy tip, and as he closed the door, he heard the well-known sound effect for boobs. As he turned, all he could see was a stunned Molly Ringwald, and when he asked Sam to rewind, she snickered and shook her head.
The movie was PG-13, and he realized he probably hadn't missed much, so instead he got out the takeout containers and grabbed forks, because neither of them had ever managed to learn the proper use of chopsticks for fried rice. Without a word, Sam took the food he offered her and continued to watch the screen intently.
"I'm not getting this," Freddie said halfway through the movie. He had finished his food, and as he had guessed, Sam had finished everything else.
She looked up like he was asking the square root of four, and kicked him. At some point, her legs had managed to find themselves on his lap, and she narrowly missed some of his more sensitive areas.
"These movies aren't meant to be complicated. How do you understand Calculus, but you're not getting this movie?"
He picked up his chopsticks and prodded her toe, "It's not the movie I'm not getting. It's the girl."
"The first time you've misunderstood a girl?" she said sarcastically, kicking the chopsticks out of his hand. "What's wrong with Molly Ringwald? She's the everygirl. And her name is Sam. That makes her awesome."
"Well, Sam is dumb. Does she ever give a good reason for liking this guy? I mean he's hot. He's obviously not a teenager, because there's absolutely nothing awkward about him. But from the unlikely salutations in the hall, what does she really know about him? As far as I can tell, he's not too smart, he's got a real winner of a girlfriend, and he throws insane parties when his parents leave for the weekend."
"Well, it doesn't matter what he is. It matters what she wants. And she wants him. And for some reason, he wants her too," Sam said, pulling her knees up to her chest and got farther away from him. His cynicism was pissing her off.
"Right. Is it completely out of the realm of thought that he just wants her because his introduction to her was basically an offer for sex in the form of a note he stole of the ground in front of him?" he was getting visibly annoyed. "Seriously Sam, you'd be amazed how big the role of sex is in the mind of teenage guys."
"Well what about Caroline? She's hot, right?" she said smugly, feeling close to victory.
"And it's not possible that he's just bored. You know what they say about redheads…" he smirked, and she ignored him from that point on. At the end of the movie, he offered no response other than to say, "Well, the Asian guy was funny."
Next she put in Weird Science, knowing in the back of her mind that he had to like this one. He had to associate with the two nerdy guys who spent their life on science and porn. It was basically his life story.
Sure enough, he had less complaints about this one, although he did mention a few situations in which he would rather he wasn't standing next to another guy. He also mentioned something about the lack of hard-ons in the shower scene, which Sam had always noticed but never directly addressed.
"Seriously, if I was standing in the shower with a naked supermodel, I'd do a lot more than just stand there catching steam," he said, making eyes at the unreal woman on the screen.
Sam felt a tinge of jealousy, but came back with, "I wouldn't hold my breath if I were you. You have less of a chance of dating a supermodel than Anthony Michael Hall does in any of these movies."
He groaned, but at this point went to the kitchen and grabbed a bag of straight up chocolate chips and came back, sharing them with Sam, who was already starving again.
It was now officially night time, and with all the artificial lighting in the apartment off, the only light came from the screen. They were both bathed in the blue light of the TV screen as Sam reached to pick up the next DVD.
Pretty in Pink had once been her favorite of these movies. From the instant Jon Cryer came on screen, he owned it, and she fell in love with him, not caring that he was now old enough to be her father. His Duckie character always seemed to be the best character in the movie and the fact that in the end, his dreams just don't come true…it bugged her. This is the one John Hughes movie in which she felt very little apathy for Molly Ringwald's character. If she was willing to throw away a guy like Duckie for a guy like Blane, she deserved all she got.
Freddie found the same problem with this one, and though he appreciated the Otis Redding scene, he had a hard time feeling for either of the main characters. The supporting characters were so much.
"If there were no other reason to be disgusted by this movie, which there is, these kisses are the worst in recorded history. It looks like they're trying to eat each other, and not in a sexy way, it's like they're literally trying to gnaw off each other's lips for sustenance," Sam chuckled in agreement. Freddie smirked and added, "Even you and I did a better job than that."
She didn't speak for a second then said, "I thought we weren't supposed to talk about that."
"We don't talk about it," he responded, before turning back to the screen. "Don't worry Sam, I'll drop it. What's up next? Another case of the sidekick getting fucked over?"
Sam thought about it for a second before answering, "Well…it's very inspiring the way he gets fucked over!"
"I don't get it. Why does Hughes insist on putting down the sidekicks? He makes them out to be the best and most complicated character in the movie, but in the end, they're still alone," He said, drowning out the three ways to fake out your parents. She was slightly angry, because most of the quotable lines in this movie were in the first ten minutes.
"Hughes is very good about being realistic," she said quietly, trying to hush him up.
"So it's realistic that the sidekick gets fucked?"
She didn't answer, which he took as an affirmation, though he didn't understand why.
"Well I've seen a picture of the guy. He seems like sidekick material to me," he said grumbling out of confusion.
"Would you just watch the movie? This is probably gonna be the one you like the most, and yet you're talking through the whole thing!"
He could tell she was angry, and though he knew he could defend himself against her, he wouldn't emerge unscathed, and another single Valentine's Day was bad enough without a trip to the Emergency Room.
Instead, he shut up and started to focus on the movie. It was pretty good. This movie was finally movie along. It's not that the sidekick was being ignored, he just wasn't complete yet. And having a girlfriend had no role in completing the character. Which was okay. Still, he found himself wondering if a few years down the road Cameron might have ended up with Sloane, long after Ferris had cheated on her and left her heartbroken.
But as it was, Cameron was strong enough without her. And he was finally able to live with himself as more than a pawn in the game of life. And Sloane was there for him. Even if it wasn't the way she was there for Ferris.
At the end of the movie, he didn't voice his small criticisms, and Sam smiled, knowing that he enjoyed this movie. He could tell that she also enjoyed knowing that he would enjoy it.
"And you said it gets better from here?" he asked, smiling as he handed her the next DVD. She rolled her eyes and put it in. When she sat back down, she sat next to him and laid her head on his shoulder. It was getting late, and it was understood that this was just mutual comfort. His head just happened to rest on top of hers.
The thing that captured Freddie attention most about this movie was that each character was…perfect. They were stereotypes, but they were very round versions of their stereotypes. There was never a point where he was judging a character solely by their identity, but by their problems, their feelings, and their actions as well. And the thing was that you could identify with every character.
This movie they watched in silence, only laughing when appropriate. Their heads never moved, and in turn they could feel every breath the other took. Their disregard for conversation wasn't based on the late hour, but mostly on their complete comfort in each other's presence.
As with the other movie, Freddie could have complained about aspects of the movie that didn't suit him, but as the night went on and Sam became more and more involved in the movie, he wanted to disappoint her less and less.
When this movie was over, Sam stretched out, ready to put the next DVD in but Freddie pushed her back down and got up to put the last DVD in. When he sat back down, she laid down, her head in his lap, only a pillow separating them. He looked down at her and smiled, and she smiled back.
"Comfortable?" he asked, bemused by her position. She nodded and he added, "So this is the best of John Hughes's movies?"
"Technically, The Breakfast Club is probably his best. But to me, Some Kind of Wonderful is the most…accurate," she said, struggling with a description that made sense of her feelings on the movie.
He simply nodded and placed a tired hand on one of her arms. She didn't shrug it off, so she left it there. It was too late to be caring about personal space. After all, she was pretty much using him as a pillow.
He let out a little chuckle when Eric Stoltz appeared on screen. She rolled her eyes, aware of the guy's awkward hair and even more awkward high-pitched voice. But his awkwardness was part of his appeal.
As a boy, she knew that he would follow the same process of Stoltz's character. He would fall for the popular chick with the awesome hair and the perfect life, while she was sitting their screaming in her head at him to see that Watt's was the one. When she looked up at his attentive face, he proved her right.
As the movie progressed, she followed it intently, finding it comforting that she knew how it ended. The first time she had watched it, it had been hard to take. She'd seen Pretty in Pink too many times to believe that Hughes had changed his endgame. But she was glad he did. It gave her hope.
Without meaning to, his hand moved from her arm to her hair, which she meant to remove, but found a little too comforting to do so. He happened to do this as Watt's expressed her dependence on Keith and his friendship, and how she'd rather never see him again than have him think badly of her. It was a very true-to-life scene.
By the end, she could tell he was confused. In the process of the movie, it was hard coming to terms with who Keith would end up with. Everyone knew who was better for him, it just happened to go against what he wanted, and like any protagonist, the audience wanted him to get what he wanted. But it still hurt to see the way Watts looked at him every time he talked about Amanda. It was "You Belong With Me: Eighties Style."
But Freddie was unaware of this fact. He didn't listen to Taylor Swift.
When the movie was finally over, she dazedly turned off the TV and sat up, still leaning on his shoulder for support.
"I can't say I saw that ending coming…" he said finally.
She patted his knee before finding the strength to stand, "You wouldn't, would you?"
He showed his confusion as he looked at her, but she just chuckled, "I'll see you in the…late afternoon Fredward. I'm going to get a few winks, and I know your Galaxy Wars sheets will put me right to sleep."
Before he could argue, she stumbled off to his room. He was glad he'd cleaned it the night before. He decided that he could sleep on the couch for one night, or morning, depending on how you looked at it.
But even though he could lie down, he couldn't fall asleep. He was still confused as to how the movie ended. The whole movie had been leading up to Keith falling in love with Amanda. Why the hell did he walk off into the night with Watts? And why was it Sam's favorite movie?
But as he started to think about it, his mind went to a scary place. The more he thought the more parallels he was able to draw, especially when he thought of himself as Keith and Sam as Watts.
The biggest element of the relationship between Keith and Watts was not on their romance, but on their sheer dependence on each other. Watts was so dedicated that she even helped him make his date with another girl worthwhile. She watched as her perfect guy was being perfect to someone else.
Which made him think of Carly. Carly was a lot like Amanda Jones. She was beautiful, and she had captivated him for all the wrong reasons. She was nice, and she was beautiful, but she was also very dependent on guys for the wrong reasons. Where Sam had a mutual dependence with him, Carly had hung onto him the whole time they were dating. He made the realization that he was comparing them as if he and Sam were an item, and he rewound.
Even the kiss reminded him of his relationship with Sam. The first kiss between Keith and Watts was a practice kiss. To him it had been a matter of technique, but to her, she was trying to make her feelings known. And they had both enjoyed it, almost forgetting that it wasn't exactly a "real" kiss.
And finally he was able to understand the end of the movie. Keith had put all the pieces together, just as he had. All at once he saw the dependence, and the admiration, and the love that he felt for Watts, and that she had felt all along. And he also realized that this was why Some Kind of Wonderful was Sam's favorite movie. She had lived it.
Knowing now that he couldn't sleep, Freddie got up and turned the TV on. The DVD was still in, and all he had to do was push play. As he saw every scene again, he could see it as Sam would see it, and he felt horrible. Because in every scene, Keith was just as oblivious as he had been, and he could see in Watts what he had been blind to in Sam.
But by the end, he knew how he felt. He knew that he felt more than an obligation to Sam. He felt the love that Keith felt for Watts, and he laughed that the realization had come from a movie he had been mocking only a few hours earlier.
As the morning turned into afternoon, he was still unable to sleep, and through his thinking he had an idea, an idea that made it even more likely that this was his destiny.
He snuck into his bedroom, taking a moment to admire the way Sam was sleeping. Though she seemed so unladylike, when she slept, she slept like a princess, hands tucked to her cheek, hair splayed out on the pillow, her mouth barely ajar. He became aware of his staring and continued on his mission.
He took the small box out of his sock drawer, and walked over to his desk. He hadn't looked at this thing in months. It brought back embarrassing thoughts of how head over heels he had been for Carly.
He had sold loads of outdated equipment to buy her a Valentine's Day gift, but they had never made it that far. Still, he had asked Sam exactly what she would want if she was Carly, and though he hadn't realized it at the time, she had probably gotten the idea from the movie.
In his hand he held a pair of single carat diamond earrings. In the early afternoon sunlight they sparkled, suddenly reminding him of Sam's eyes. He closed the box, and the snapping noise made Sam stir.
"Freddie is that you?" she asked without opening her eyes.
He looked up and chuckled to himself, "Yeah."
"What time is it?" she asked, reaching blindly for his alarm clock.
He could easily see the numbers from where he sat and answered, "It's half past two."
She finally opened her eyes and smiled, "Would you mind making me a late post-Valentine's survival lunch?"
Usually he would have argued, but he nodded, "Sure thing."
He carefully pocketed the jeweler's box and went back out toward the kitchen, managing to make an attempt at cooking. What he ended up doing was warming up the pre-made pasta his mother had intended for him to eat the night before. By the time Sam came out it was finished.
When he had let her borrow his t-shirt and sweatpants the night before, he had thought nothing of it, but now the thought made him smirk. She sat down at the small kitchen table, and he sat down across from her, picking at his spaghetti, almost as unable to eat as he had been unable to sleep the night before.
She noticed something was up and examined the dark circles illuminated under his dark eyes, "Did you get any sleep?"
"Not really," he answered, shaking his head. "I was busy thinking."
"See, this is why I'm glad I don't have your brain. You sleep more when you have less to think about," she said, smiling this bright little smile that was meant to poke at him, while poking at herself as well.
"Well, you gave me a lot to think about," he answered, ultimately avoiding eye contact across the table, instead focusing at the little pieces of mushroom between the pasta.
She rolled her eyes, "Oh lord, what have you been overanalyzing now? No Freddie, I am not about to commit suicide via flare gun. And we don't even have a German-themed celebration in Seattle."
He chuckled, "Not the movies I was talking about. But I think I get it."
She smiled, "The ending to Some Kind of Wonderful?"
"Something like that," he said, fighting past his insecurities. "I was just wondering. What makes that your favorite movie? You sort of explained it last night, but I want you to clarify."
"This is where you tell me that you think I'm Keith and that I have some unachievable crush on some guy on the football team, and that eventually I'll end up settling on…Gibby," she said, bemused.
"No Sam, I think I'm Keith," he answered quietly. He finally looked up at her and found her staring at him, he jaw dropping just a little. He was right.
She stood up unexpectedly, "You know, I think I should…"
"Sam…" he said, standing up to follow her.
"No! You know, I'm Watts. You've got that right. But I don't get a Some Kind of Wonderful ending. I get a Pretty in Pink ending. You and Miss Perfect will end up together, and I'll end up, just kind of sort of happy with some extra. And I will sit in the background and let it happen, because I know it's what makes you happy, and that's okay for me. It may not make me happy, but just seeing you happy…it's better than nothing."
She was starting to cry out of frustration and he walked towards her, taking her head in his hands, "Listen, this isn't prom. I'm not wearing a pink dress. Therefore, this can't be the ending to Pretty in Pink. You're just going to have to settle for Some Kind of Wonderful. Now, I would give you a running start, but I'm not sure if I'd be able to catch up. So this'll just have to do…"
And with that he kissed her. The first was short, and she was too shocked to respond. The second was met with a smile, and a soft, forgiving opposition. When one of her hands almost found his pocket, he decided it was time and pulled away.
"Hey Sam, do you remember those earrings you wanted?"
"You mean the ones you bought Carly? You must've returned those ages ago…" she said, wondering why he was bringing this up now.
He brought the box out and opened it, "You knew you were gonna get these."
She smiled, and without hesitation began to put them in and answered, "I didn't know. I hoped, but I didn't know."
They both smiled as they just stared at each other, until Sam asked, "Well, how do they look?"
Freddie cupped her cheek with his hand and rubbed the last evidence of her tears away with the tip of his thumb, "You look good wearing my future."
I hope you enjoyed that. If you did, please review. And if you didn't...review anyway :D
Also, make sure you look out for the rest of the Cabal on our giant Valentine's Day post. This is my contribution, but I'm sure my compatriots have better.
The Cabal: arrossisce/aussiemma/axel100/BaalRules/BoxOfTrinkets/boxofpiglets/Commander Lagasse/Coyote Laughs/ItalianBabexo8/iCabal/iCarlyangst/iLuvNathanKrEsS/JamesTheGreater/KingxLeon21/Myjumpingsocks/ober22/pairababes/Pieequals36/pigwiz/Tech-Man/The Earl of Sandwich/xXACCEBXx