Torqued wench

For some reason, Tom Hansen (Joseph Gordon-Leavitt) is believed by some to be the Best Fictional Boyfriend:

It’s unclear as to how much of the internet’s collective rage against Zooey Deschanel is actually based on her as a person, but we do know that a huge percentage of it stems from her character’s treatment of Our Beloved JGL in (500) Days of Summer. How many of us sat at home on our couches (or, let’s be real, in a movie theater full of strangers), yelling, “It’s okay, my sweet prince, I will love you forever! Forget her and come let me lick your precious, be-sweatered wounds!!” (possibly whilst licking the screen)? Or was that just me? I have a hard time believing that we all didn’t feel a serious pang of jealousy as we watched poor TomTom’s heart get torn to shreds by a set of bangs wearing little girl dresses, unable to do a thing about it. Whether he’s drawing on our arms, kissing us in the copy room, or simply gazing at us with eyes that resemble warm chocolate cupcakes, Tom would be a perfect fictional boyfriend.

To tell you the truth, I think it was just her. And whence cometh all this “rage” against ZD? I can think of things she’s done that are far worse than picking on little Tom-Tom, and you don’t see me with knotted BVDs.

Taylor Brogan, who tweeted that thing to my attention — okay, it wasn’t just my attention — has noted:

In the movie, we see on a number of occasions that Tom’s own perception of Summer is very different from reality. The “expectations vs. reality” scene is probably the most obvious example. Based on all of Summer’s past behavior, including her admittance that she isn’t ready for commitment and her continued disinterest during the relationship, Tom still EXPECTS her to want him. He expects her to greet him with love and affection after all that time, because he’s just the nicest guy, you know?

In reality, she’s just a smart, thoughtful twenty-something who knows herself well enough to know that this guy is not the one for her. She initially turns him down, which should have been the Big Damn Signal of Truth and Destiny (“dude, she’s just not that into you”). But Tom is persistent, and she is, presumably, lonely.

I am so stealing that bit about the Big Damn Signal of Truth and Destiny.

If there’s a lesson in this, it’s simply: be wary of the Manic Pixie Dream Girl. The most immediate effect of being swept off your feet is losing your equilibrium.


  1. Lynn »

    2 October 2012 · 7:40 am

    I am so out of the pop cultural loop (and proud of it, actually) I had no idea there was any rage against Zooey Deschanel. A lot of eye rolling I could understand but rage? Is she really worth it?

    Anyway, the sort of thing described here is exactly why I hate romantic comedies. The people in them, especially the women, are so STUPID. I just can’t stand them.

  2. fillyjonk »

    2 October 2012 · 8:05 am

    Do the people who spend so much time raging against celebrities/manic pixie girls/movies/whatever have no real problems in their lives? Because if so, I kind of want their life, and I promise I wouldn’t hate on ZD if I had it.

    I will say I always wonder at the Manic Pixie Girl fondness: they’re supposed to be kind of flaky, right? I would be driven INSANE by a guy who was cute and vivacious but flaky. I guess (some) men are different? (Or maybe I’m just looking at myself, as probably the best example of anti-manic-pixie-girl and going: “Yes, once again: this is why you are single.”)

  3. Brian J. »

    3 October 2012 · 5:32 am

    The unwritten implication of this post is that Charles is out of pictures of Zooey Deschanel.

    Otherwise, one would expect to see one accompanying the post.

  4. Tatyana »

    3 October 2012 · 8:43 pm

    Brian: shshsh! don’t give him ideas!

  5. CGHill »

    3 October 2012 · 9:14 pm

    I hate to break it to both of you, but it’s too late.

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