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Review: Mean Girls the Musical (2024) Falls Flat

Mean Girls (2024) has been floating around in a lot of controversy since it was released in theaters on January 12, 2024. This rendition, based on Mean Girls (2004) and the Mean Girls Broadway Musical (2017), has had both highs and lows but mostly fell flat.

The modern musical was not a hit like it was advertised to be. 

The Mean Girls the Musical’s poster outside of Lake 8 Movie Theater. This poster is sitting alongside a bunch of other movie posters that are being shown in the theater. Photo by Larkin Tackett.

Comparing the ‘24 and ‘04 versions, the newest one was much slower-paced with long drawn-out musical scenes that interrupted the flow of the story instead of adding to it. The musical scenes of the high schoolers being animalistic in the 2024 version were overdone and too long while the scene in the original 2004 version felt like it was the perfect amount of time and extent of the acting.

Most of the Plastics did not portray the characters and their traits as well as they did in the 2004 version. While the acting was not the best, overall; the singing and dancing, and its timing, was terrible. 

Many individuals also believed that the casting of Reneé Rapp as Regina George was well thought out with her singing abilities and experience in the acting field, but I disagree.  Jaquel Spivey as Damian Leigh and Auliʻi Cravalho as Janis Ian were the best translated from the original to the new movie. 

Regina George is a character I loved to hate in the 2004 version, but I just hated the 2024 Regina. Her character felt extra entitled and nasty, not just mean.  Her musical numbers felt forced. 

The artsy friends, however, were as lovable as ever and the 2024 Damien and Janis had me rooting for them through the entire movie. Even their musical numbers were enjoyable. 

“Even though the actor [Chris Briney] of Aaron Samuels couldn’t sing, it was still nice to see him in the movie,” said Landry Macko, a sophomore at Wadsworth High School. 

This wasn’t the only complaint among the viewers.

“They didn’t leave any of the original jokes that were super funny,” said Mia Vignali, a junior at Wadsworth High School.

Both movie versions and the Broadway production were successful in portraying the message of high school bullying and there were moments in the movie that showcased femininity in an insensitive and over-dramatic way. Mean Girls’ 2024 overall message of feminism and not judging someone was hidden in the oversexualized aspects.

“An example is Karen,” Vignali said. “She was just too stupid and used her stupidity to oversexualize her.” 

Karen is not the smartest girl in school in both versions but in the 2024 version, she was also extremely sexual and her body was the focal point of her character in almost every scene. 

However, on the flip side, some people did think the movie was campy and fun. It was modernized and brought Mean Girls 2004 to a new perspective of 2024 by replacing some of the old terminology and updating outdated technology. 

 

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About the Contributor
Larkin Tackett, Staff Writer
Larkin Tackett is a sophomore and it is her first year on the Bruin staff. She is currently a staff writer but she wants to be an editor in the future. She took the Newspaper/Yearbook 1 class her freshman year and immediately knew that she wanted to be on the Bruin. Her favorite part of being on the Bruin staff is getting to hang out with fellow staff members and learning some new things about news and newspapers. The Bruin has taught her how to work under a deadline and get things done under an amount of stress. She has grown so much due to this class and wants to continue growing. She is looking forward to seeing the staff's growth in writing, layout, and collaboration from issue to issue and improving for the years going forward. She also looks forward to deepening relations within the staff and creating new ones with future staff members.
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