Today were celebrating the beauty that is 10 Things I Hate About You as the timeless teen movie turns 20.
Feeling old yet?
The flick that launched the careers of Heath Ledger and co into the stratosphere was a beacon of brilliance back in 1999 when it debuted, with a bunch of sassy characters led by the formidable Kat Stratford (played by Julia Stiles).
The high schooler took no prisoners as she shared her feminist ideals and devil may care attitude that influenced a bunch of young women to unapologetically be themselves and stick to their convictions, no matter how it may reflect on your look at me, look at me popularity.
While we wax lyrical on the brilliant messages of the story as a whole, the original story of William Shakespeares, which this modern adaption is loosely set, is actually pretty problematic.
Like, that thing is grim AF in comparison.
Written in 1591, Shakespeares piece was always going to have a pretty different take on how things were done, seeing that is what Elizabethan Shakespeare was all about. Plus, you know, the whole written in 1591 thing.
10 Things though, in contrast, is a pretty light hearted story of the two sisters from Shakepseares novel, who have a bunch of dudes chasing after them for differing reasons – Bianca because she is wanted, Kat (or in the play, Katherine) because their father forbids Bianca to date until someone takes Kat off his hands.
At the root of both stories, Kat is the apparent tempestuous shrew. And the movie floats along the same train of thought as suitors try to woo the women.
In the film Kat shows the same sort of violence by shrew Katherine, who breaks a lute over a teachers head – in the film, we remember Kat crashed into egotistical Joey Donners car.
The violence checks out in both the movie and play. That is really where the similarities stop, though.
What were pretty chuffed didnt make it into the rewriting is the misogynistic take on Shakespeares tale, which really does make you raise an eyebrow and thank the good lord Allison Janney showrunners veered from the OG telling to bring us something we can look back on 20 years later and smile.
The main difference between the two stories is abundantly the attitudes towards women – the sisters are property to be traded. Thankfully, its pretty much the opposite of 10 things, which has a whole lot of strong female characters.
For instance, Petruchio (whom the character of Patrick Verona is based on) basically kidnaps his new bride Katherine after theyre married – and she can do nothing about it as she was bought. Cute, huh?
Petruchio also feels the denial of food and clothing on Katherine will break her will in the play and make her into a better wife. Not cool, P!
That didnt happen and Heath Ledgers Patrick definitely didnt resort to calling Kat his property or, his ass, and cart her off to a life of wifey servitude as in the play.
At the end of the old story, tamed Katherine offers to place her hand under her husbands foot. Should he need a literal leg-up we suppose?
That misogynistic stuff just wouldnt fly in modern 10 Things.
In fact, its a welcome reversal of the play and Patrick is the one who changes (he quits smoking, actually smiles, probably doesnt mess with Bunsen burners), which flips the misogynistic rhetoric on its head.
Its said Shakespeares take on the whole thing was a satire about the gender norms of the time, but sheesh the whole thing is pretty dated. WeRead More – Source