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Janis and Regina have completely opposite interpretations.Janis believes in being a straight-talker, Regina believes in manipulation for pleasure and profit.
It’s interesting to study the social dynamics within the Plastics themselves.
She's attractive, and more importantly, she's the most socially intelligent.
This is the “near death” trope- when a player experiences significant trauma and decides they don’t want to play anymore.
This is a bit of a copout, and probably an artistic choice for the sake of the limitations of the movie.
She has no preconceived notions of how people behave or ought to behave in cliques and groups. The first thing that happens when she shows up at school is… She’s unable to make sense of the elaborate, cascading complexity that are high-school social relations.
Fish out of water, Alien visits Earth, you name the trope.Unfortunately, social reality can be like poker- there are real stakes involved, and you don’t win by “playing nice”.Well, different people have different interpretations of how the game ought to be played. What is "normal" to us is strange and foreign to her. We all know what it's like to be thrust into an environment where we don't know the rules. It might seem like a show about teenage girls, but it’s as nail-bitingly exciting as Late Night Poker, because it demonstrates decision-making, with stakes. Cady’s been homeschooled her whole life, which makes her a perfect “blank slate” character to explore social reality with.Think about this- what would’ve happened if Regina get hit by the bus?Even if Cady decided to “quit the plastic scene”, Cady’s continued existence would threaten Regina’s dominance (as long as Regina cares about her social status).Cady’s interpretation of how to play the social game changes throughout the movie- that’s her personal development as a character, and that’s what makes the movie so goddamn compelling- she experiences multiple different social realities depending on how she wants to play her hand.As I revisit quotes of the movie, I realize that both of Regina’s followers are “clueless” (in the Gervais Principle sense).She has too many assets (her own looks, the attention she gets from boys, and above all, her shrewd understanding of interpersonal relations, people’s insecurities, fears, wants and needs, and all the blackmail content she has).I suppose maybe Cady could’ve gone the “exile” route and kept to herself and the math kids.