Last year we posted Anita Sarkeesian’s great discussion of the manic pixie dream girl trope. The manic pixie is a female side character who, through her whimsical approach to life, “helps the male main character find himself, love life again, or overcome some obstacle.” Think Natalie Portman in Garden State.
Anyhow, I came across a skit making fun of the trope by taking the manic pixie to its logical conclusion, titled “Welcome to the State Home for the Manic Pixie Dream Girl.” Yep, it’s a state-run institution for the charming but totally helpless, perhaps-mentally-challenged not-so-dream girl. I’m putting it up here because it’s quite funny, but I also like how it deconstructs a version of ideal femininity, revealing it to be rather impractical indeed.
Transcript, by Trellany J. Evans, after the jump:
Lisa Wade, PhD is a professor at Occidental College. She is the author of American Hookup, a book about college sexual culture, and Gender, a textbook. You can follow her on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
State Home Administrator: Hi there! I’m so sorry that I kept you waiting. You must be–
Kyle: Kyle. We spoke on the phone.
State Home Administrator: Yes. Hello Kyle. *Turns to Katie* You must be Katie.
Katie: *Blows a kiss to the administrator*
State Home Administrator: Oh. *Catches the kiss*
Kyle: *Holds up the end of the headphone cable*
Katie: I like to listen to the songs in my head.
Kyle: *Gently sobs* I’m sorry. God, I’m sorry. I just..
State Home Administrator: It’s quite alright.
Katie: I paid the cab driver in buttons!
State Home Administrator: Well, why don’t I show you two around the facilities.
Kyle: *Continues to gently sob*
State Home Administrator: *Hands Katie’s husband a tissue*
Kyle: *Sobbing* Thank you.
State Home Administrator: It’s going to be okay.
State Home Administrator: When did you first suspect you were dating a manic pixie dream girl?
Kyle: Everything seemed so perfect at first. You know. She was cute, but also quirky and awkward. On our first date, she said she wanted pancakes for dinner. So adorable!
*The Shins begin to play as Katie and Kyle star at each other*
Katie: *Touches Kyle’s nose* Boop!
Kyle: We danced in the rain to the music in our hearts. I felt alive. But then after a few months, I started to realize she was eating pancakes for every meal. She can’t feed herself. She can’t pay bills. She just marvels at the wonder of every moment. I mean every moment! We got married in a fucking bouncy castle! *Sighs* Should I get here?
State Home Administrator: Oh, no. It’s alright. She can wander.
*Security guard mimics Katie’s movements*
State Home Administrator: We have excellent security.
*Security guard and administrator give each other a thumb’s *
State Home Administrator: I’m going to be honest with you Kyle, your wife’s case is sever.
Kyle: *Begins to sob again and pull his hoodie up*
State Home Administrator: But, as you can see, our facilities are designed to help girls like Katie function in… Oh, for the love of–
*Man in a hoodie walks in *
State Home Administrator: *Confronts the man* Out! Out! For the last time, she is here for her own good.
*Kyle takes his hoodie off*
Man: She’s such a free spirit.
State Home Administrator: Yes, I know sir, but she is really very sick.
Man: She listens to the Smiths.
State Home Administrator: They all listen to the Smiths, sir!
Man: Okay, okay, um, I made a mix CD.
*The Manic Pixie Dream Girls start staring the man*
State Home Administrator: I will make sure she gets it.
Man: Okay, I’m writing a play right now. I’m in the middle of the first act and she’s–
State Home Administrator: Okay.
Man: She’s my muse.
State Home Administrator: *Turns to Kyle* Sorry about that.
*Manic Pixie Dream Girls begin staring at the administrator*
State Home Administrator: *Throws the mix CD in the trash and leads Kyle out* It’s best not to watch.
*Manic Pixie Dream Girls rush towards the trash can to retrieve the mix CD*
Manic Pixie Dream Girl 1: Do you think it’s ever possible to ever be truly in the moment?
Manic Pixie Dream Girl 2: The Native American’s believed everything is alive
Manic Pixie Dream Girl 3: This is real pixie dust
Manic Pixie Dream Girl 2: Even this marker!
Manic Pixie Dream Girl 3: from the wings of a pixie.
Manic Pixie Dream Girl 4: This should be a game where you, like, put this thing, like, here and then you can make a Jolly Rancher pass right through it.
Katie: I told him “The best place to see the night sky is laying in the middle of the street.” It’s the flattest place there is!
Kyle: She does seem happy.
State Home Administrator: Happy as she can be, I suppose.
* Manic Pixie Dream Girls look outside as it starts to rain, then look at the administrator for approval*
State Home Administrator: Yes. It’s okay. Go ahead.
* Manic Pixie Dream Girls run outside and dance in slow motion to the Shins*
Kyle: How do they do that?
State Home Administrator: We don’t really know. The cause of the Manic Pixie Dream Girl Condition is still only dimly understood. Although my own theory is sever retardation of the brain. Excuse me, if I don’t go out there they drown.