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The first film:

  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Some viewers have theorized that, when Janis and Regina were friends, Janis was the queen bee and Regina was the innocent friend (like Cady) who was slowly evolving. There are times where Janis is arguably just as bad as Regina.
      • The above also led to the theory that Regina is a lesbian herself who bullied Janies due to internalized homophobia.
    • In some twisted way, Regina does appear to care for the Plastics, seeming shocked that they abandoned her and that Cady was manipulating her. Were her Pet the Dog moments genuine or just something she did to make sure they stayed loyal?
  • Designated Hero: Janis. She's just as manipulative as Regina but while Regina is said to be evil and receives punishment for it, becoming a better person for it, Janis is a Karma Houdini who threw Cady under the bus and never offers any help.
  • Designated Villain: Karen.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Pretty much the entire cast depending on who you ask. The characters are well-written enough and well-acted enough (and significantly, diverse enough) that that you could put almost any of them in this field. But special mention has to go to Glen Coco, a character who we do not see, do not hear, and only hear one line about, and is still this trope for some.

  Glen Coco? Four for you Glen Coco! You go Glen Coco.

    • According to the special features, the Mathletes were the favorite characters of the cast and crew.
    • Regina George herself has been known to be the show stealer for many people too, as have Gretchen and Karen.
  • Follow the Leader: This movie has been called a PG-13 version of Heathers, and not without justification.
  • Fountain of Memes: Dear Heavens. The amount of oft-quoted lines in this movie is rivalled only by Star Wars and Casablanca.
  • Genius Bonus: Gretchen's report about Julius Caesar (the Shakespeare play not the person), while clearly a veiled critique of her and Regina's relationship, is an accurate summary of how the upper echelons of Roman society viewed Caesar and why he was assassinated.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Regina's line "I couldn't invite her to my party, I mean, right, she was a lesbian!" to Cady became this trope when Lindsay Lohan started a romantic relationship with a woman.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Regina's "I couldn't have a lesbian at my party..." takes on a whole new (and funny) meaning now that Lindsay Lohan has picked up a girlfriend, and now that Amanda Seyfried has done two movies in which her character makes out (and in one case, has sex) with another woman.
      • For an added bonus, take a look at the list of songs during the credits. One of them is performed by Samantha Ronson, Lohan's on-and-off girlfriend.
    • The fact that the film was toned down to PG-13 after Lindsay Lohan was cast, due to her being too "family-friendly" to star in an R-rated film.
    • Before playing Gretchen Wieners, Lacey Chabert was the voice of Eliza Thornberry, who traveled around exotic lands with her parents like Cady.
    • Though it also counts as a Funny Aneurysm Moment depending on your view, the movie follows Cady as she falls in with the wrong crowd and goes from a mild-mannered nice girl into a party-happy temperamental bitch...
      • Lohan's constant arrests and trips to rehab afterwards have led to the widespread idea that Regina got the last laugh on Cady in the end.
    • Cady sees two girls making out at the Halloween party and looks very dismayed.
  • Hollywood Homely:
    • Gretchen. Regina comments that Gretchen isn't that pretty, implying that Gretchen is only popular for being rich, not for her looks like Regina and Karen and Cady. The problem? She's played by Lacey Chabert.
    • Janis, who is played by Lizzy Caplan. To be fair, the producers were reluctant to cast Lizzy as Janis because they felt she was too pretty, so they instead gave her an "alternative" look and showed that her lack of popularity was due to her fashion sense and past events instead of her being ugly.
  • Hollywood Pudgy: Regina "balloons" up to a size 6. Though at the height of her weight gain, the special effects crew did shove a pillow up under her shirt. When Regina bumps into a fat girl and she says, "Watch where you're going, fatass!" Regina has very obvious padding on her ass. Arguably intentional, to show how high Regina's standards are.
    • Tina Fey comments on this commentary and notes that Regina at her fattest in the movie is probably around Tina Fey's own weight.
  • Memetic Mutation, Fountain of Memes: On Facebook and Tumblr (especially Tumblr), there is not a single line from this movie that is not memetastic.
  • Misaimed Fandom: Oddly, this movie seems to be most popular with the same kinds of people that it mercilessly makes fun of.
  • Moral Event Horizon: "Put it in the book." It's where Cady herself admits she's begun to act like a bitch; though at the time, she tells herself she's just pretending.
  • Older Than They Think: The often quoted line "It's like you've got ESPN or something" is usually attributed to this film, but that exact line actually came from an episode of Will And Grace (the line was said by Jack) that aired 3 years before this film came out.
  • The Scrappy: Time has not been kind to Janis. While Cady, Regina, and Gretchen all did terrible things, they all got Laser-Guided Karma and redeemed themselves at the end, Janis emerges as a Karma Houdini.
  • Unfortunate Implications: "Desperate Wannabes" include.... a dwarf girl and a physically challenged girl in a wheelchair. Isn't that interesting?
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: Cady not coming clean at the assembly. While it seems a cowardly move, she is actually protecting Gretchen and Karen by not revealing that she wrote in the Burn Book. And that's not even getting into how the mob would likely have torn her apart if she told the truth.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Janis who pushes the Naive Newcomer into befriending the Girl Posse all so she can bring them down from the inside. Aside from being furious at Cady honestly befriending Gretchen and Karen, she later throws Cady under the bus at the assembly.
  • Values Dissonance: Regina destroyed Janis' reputation by spreading a rumour that she was a lesbian. While this was a stigma in the early 2000s, in The New Tens, the reaction from the school would likely be "...and we should care because?"

The sequel:

  • Complete Monster: Mandi.
  • Fanon Discontinuity
  • Jerk Sue: Jo.
  • Ruined FOREVER
  • Sequelitis: Apart from the element of Jo creating a group of Anti-Plastics and the climactic football game, the film is pretty much a remake of the first film, without the laughs. Also Jo's friends turning against her is extremely forced.
    • Tina Fey repeatedly turned down offers to make the sequel. Now that the sequel was done without her, she regrets turning down the offer.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: Mandi's step-brother is really callous towards her. It's not exactly undeserved but since she seems to like him, Taylor can come across as a bit of a jerk and arguably even as a contributing factor to Mandi's bitchiness.
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