by Asha Rajan
Now I gotta cut loose. Footloose. Kick off your Sunday shoes...
Go on, 'fess up. That's an instantaneous earworm, and you're tapping your toes. Keep tapping for this week's VHS and Chill. We're watching Footloose (the 1984 version, we're not monsters) and playing a drinking game.
Every time Kevin Bacon pouts, take a bite of bacon (chomp!).
Every spotting of a cornball trope, take a swig of your cocktail (drink!).
There are so many to choose from in this movie; the perfect sedate, god-fearing country town, the country boy next door, the rebellious preacher's daughter, the less glamorous (really, Sarah Jessica Parker as less glamorous?!) best friend, the outsider who injects life to the conservative, dismal town, the steadfast, long-suffering preacher's wife who ends up supporting the teens, the rebellious teens, the country kids playing chicken with tractors. You're going to be hammered within the first 15 minutes.
I was 15 in 1984 when Kevin Bacon kicked his way onto the big screen in this film. Sparkly leg warmers were cool, conservative parents came in all shades, and music and rebellion were my everything (drink!).
This coming-of-age movie, like Kevin Bacon (chomp!), is the complete package. It's got all the angst and frustration felt by every teenager ever at the thoroughly oppressive regime of their parents' rules (drink!).
After all, who hasn't felt caged by society's notions of what we should be doing, how we should be behaving (drink!)?
And we all know that parents of teens are just the absolute worst, right (drink!)? They're so MEAN.
Who hasn't wanted to drive their beat-up yellow VW beetle to an abandoned farm shed, turn the music up loud, and run, jump, and punch the air as a release (chomp! drink, drink, drink, drink, drink, drink!)?
Am I the only one who identified with Ariel's mild mannered bad-girl rebellion (drink!)? I don't think so!
Am I the only one who dreamed of meeting a Ren (chomp!), just awakening to a sense of social justice (drink!)? No.
Was I the only one charmed to my toes by the quiet, goofy, corny boy-next-door cowboy embodied by Willard (drink!)? I mean, THE BOY CAN'T DANCE, but he can wear the shit out of cowboy boots and a hat (drink, drink!)! Who the hell looks adorable when trying to find the beat (drink!)? Willard, that's who. Ummm... I may have married Willard.
But beyond the tension of whether the teens change the tightly-knit, closely-stitched community in a small but significant way (drink!), beyond the music with a beat so strong your body reacts instinctively (drink!), beyond the carefully constructed twee down-home, Middle-of-Nowhere-USA country town (with incidentally, no black or brown townsfolk – drink, drink, DRINK!), and beyond the rebellion (drink!), there was Kevin Bacon/Ren (chomp!). We all deserve a Ren at some point in our lives.
So, let’s hear it for the boy!
For this week's VHS and Chill you need to get yourself a cowboy boot to drink out of, because that's what all the kids wore in the bible belt Americana of Footloose. Or, you know, a jar or something else down-homey. But don't skip the bacon, or else you can't play the aforementioned drinking game above. If you really want to get crazy, put the bacon IN your drink. Beer, whiskey, bacon? It totally goes together.
The Footloose Boilermaker with Bacon
- 1 shot whiskey
- Plenty of bacon (as garnish, or just to eat)
- Pour the beer into your cowboy boot mug.
- Pour a shot of whiskey into the beer.
- Don't forget the bacon.