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Superbad is a 2007 teen comedy written by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg (who began working on it when they were in high school and named the main characters after themselves), directed by Greg Mottola and produced by Judd Apatow.
Seth (Jonah Hill) and Evan (Michael Cera) are best friends, seniors in high school who are going off to different colleges next year. It's their life's ambition to get laid before they leave high school. To achieve this, they volunteer to bring the alcohol to an end-of-the-year party where both of their respective crushes will be. They are forced to enlist the help of an annoying friend, Fogell (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), and his fake ID, which identifies him only as "McLOVIN". Trying to buy the alcohol, he is caught up in the middle of a robbery, makes friends with the cops (Seth Rogen and Bill Hader), and spends the rest of the night being entertained by them. (That's not a euphemism. It looks like a great time.) Seth and Evan, assuming he's been arrested, strike out on their own to find some alcohol and make it to the party... which they eventually do, except the rest of the night isn't what they were expecting it to be.
This film contains examples of:
- Above the Influence: The movie uses this, although having sex is the point of the teenager's plan. It does have him getting together with the girl at the end. Also subverted somewhat, as Jules is completely sober, and Seth is very much drunk. Happens at the climax, along with a more toned-down gender-flipped variant.
- Ambiguously Gay: Seth. Maybe not even all that ambiguous.
- Awesome McCoolname: McLovin. Lampshaded by everyone.
- Bavarian Fire Drill: This is done by real police officers. They turn on their siren just to get other drivers out of the way and so they can go through red lights. Also done later on Fogell's behalf, where they "arrest" him so that he'll seem like a bad boy so that he can get more chicks.
- Brand X: Goldshlick Vodka is an obvious nod to Goldschläger Schnapps.
- Broken Treasure: Seth has to bring alcohol to a party in order to impress Jules, and manages to succeed despite many setbacks. Evan has to bring a specific brand of vodka to impress Becca, but it breaks on the way. It all works out in the end though.
- But Liquor Is Quicker: The key to Seth's plot to more or less Date Rape Jules.
- Captain Obvious:
Seth: When I was a kid, I would...draw pictures of dicks.
Seth: Draw pictures of dicks.
Evan: Dicks? Like...a man dick?
Seth: Yes, like a man dick.
Fogel: Why would you park in the staff parking lot? (pause) I mean, 'cause you're not staff.
Seth: I KNOW THAT, FAGEL. I. KNOW. THAT.
- Cluster F-Bomb: "Fuck" is heard 186 times, averaging 1.6 times a minute.
- Coming of Age Story: With rather more discussion of penises than usual.
- Cover Identity Anomaly: Fogel's fake ID lacks a first name.
- Dawson Casting: Played straight with Jonah Hill, avoided with Emma Stone, Michael Cera and Christopher Mintz-Plasse. Commentary for the film tells the story that Judd Apatow had to be convinced that Jonah could pull off the role age-wise. Originally the role was intended for Seth Rogen (who wrote it) but was deemed too old at 25; Hill ended up landing the role despite only being a year younger than Rogen. Rogen admits freely that he's looked thirty since he was about fifteen. Because he was a minor, Mintz-Plasse's mother was required by law to be on the set when Fogell loses his virginity.
- Dramatic Shattering: The bottle of Goldschlick.
- Extraverted Nerd: Fogell, best known as McLovin.
- Fail O'Suckyname: Literally, in the case of the film's Italian edition. Since it is customary for Italian youth to use "X" (as in, the multiplication symbol) instead of "per" (because "per" in Italian also means "times") while texting and in slang, the distributors, thinking of a supposed appeal to young moviegoers, did the same to this film's title. The result... SUXBAD.
- The cops also note that they once arrested a man named "Phuck." They're pretty sure he was Vietnamese, but its still startling to see on a license.
- Feud Episode: Seth accuses Evan of "abandoning" him while trying to steal alcohol. Then Seth gets into an argument on the fact that Evan is going to a different college when they were supposed to go together. When Evan said he was trying to do his best in school and tired of Seth "holding him back", Seth fights him and calls Evan a wuss for not saying anything before.
- Give Geeks a Chance:
- Complete geeks Evan and Seth end up with hotties Becca and Jules. Although Evan, despite his geeky personality, is still a hottie according to most women.
- Fogel getting half-laid with hottie Nicola and heavily implied that he's gonna get some later.
- Hollywood Nerd: Totally averted - Seth, Fogell and Evan all look like believable high school outcasts. The film actually goes further in making even the cute popular girls like Becca and Jules only be normal school pretty rather than Hollywood goddesses..
- Hope Spot: When the boys finally make it to a bus and are on their way to the party until the bum breaks Evan's bottle of Goldschlick.
- Hot Mom: Evan's mom. Lampshaded.
- I Am Not McLovin: Poor Mintz-Plasse...
- Iron Butt Monkey: Seth is this, he gets hit by a car twice, cops a baseball bat to the back of the head and collapses face first into pavement without scratch to show for it.
- Ivy League for Everyone: Evan getting into Dartmouth is what instigates the riff between him and Seth.
- Kick the Son of a Bitch: Officer Slater's reaction to being spit at by some dumb kid is a pretty severe overreaction and would be disturbing police brutality in any other context. But here it's just a Crowning Moment of Awesome for him.
- Last-Name Basis: Fogell.
- MacGuffin: The fake "McLovin" ID gets so much mention and screen time, it's practically its own character.
- Noodle Incident: We never find what "non-violent crime" Francis committed, or what sort of people his "friends" are, or why he wasn't welcome at the party.
- Although it is kind of implied that he's a pedophile.
- Another one of the noodle incidents in the movie is when Seth tells Greg to piss his pants again, in which Greg replies that that was eight years ago. We don't know what exactly happened and why he wet himself.
- No Periods, Period: Someone points out a red spot on Seth's pant legs. Seth is confused about where it came from until someone else asks "Dude, were you dancing with a chick in there?". Indeed he had been, and hilarity ensues.
- The Not-Secret: Both cops are already fully aware that "McLovin" isn't Fogel's real name, but they're playing along to try and show him that not all police officers are heartless jerks.
"When we were your age -- we hated cops."
- Only One Name: You know who.
- Actually none of the characters have two names. Most are referred by their first name. Officers Michaels and Slater only have last names and it's unclear about Fogell/McLovin
- Precision F-Strike:
Jules: What!? The!? Fuck!?
- Really Seventeen Years Old: The characters try to pass themselves off as 21 in order to buy alcohol.
- Stacy's Mom: Seth is attracted to Evan's mom.
- Throw It In: A surprising amount of the jokes were purely ad-libbed by the cast, usually until something was funny enough to cause the actors to break down laughing, and thusly added to the script.
- Wild Teen Party: The whole plot is Seth, Fogell and Evan trying to get alcohol to the party they were invited to.
- You Just Had to Say It: Evan tells Fogell to "shut the fuck up" for telling Seth he and Evan are going to the same college, sharing a room.