If you have been on Twitter for the past month, you have probably stumbled on a couple posts about The Kissing Booth.
A new Netflix original movie that has been sweeping up the tween crowd by storm. The plot centers around Elle Evans, a girl is falling for her best friend’s older brother, Noah. After a moment happens between them at their school carnival’s kissing booth, they must hide their relationship to keep his brother Lee and her father from finding out.
Netflix reported that it has 30% higher rewatch rate than the average movie.
It makes sense why this movie is a big hit. It’s a teen-centered romantic comedy with a semi-good looking cast and a cheesy type fill that we teens eat up quicker than pizza. Though, like the plot’s origin, Wattpad, there is content that it features and promotes that we need to call out.
For one, the movie has an extreme lack of diversity.
Nowadays, creative content is being called out for not representing the masses. But honestly, Disney Channel’s Descendants did a better job of creating a diverse environment than this movie did. And that movie is about fairytale villains having children (with who? we still don’t know). The movie features one women of color with a speaking role who still manages to carry out microaggressions in her few minutes of screentime. It’s important for these types of movies to feature a diversity of characters so all teens can see themselves in them. But instead, we once again found ourselves with a movie that takes place in L.A. and ignores it’s diverse demographic.
The film also manages to promote the popular trope that a bad boy is a perfect boy for you.
There is nothing wrong with dating a boy who had a bad past or may be troubled in some way or fashion. But what movies like this do is promote fighting and threatening people to stay away as flirting and romantic. It doesn’t show it’s true colors of being actual signs of abuse down the line. The Kissing Booth isn’t the only one doing this and doesn’t deserve all the blame for this. Yet, it allows the idea of guys being aggressive as attractive to be conveyed to even more vulnerable teenagers.
Now, this whole article isn’t to simply hate on The Kissing Booth. Despite its awkward writing style, it has its moments. The main three actors did an amazing job for the script they were provided and overall the appeal is obviously there. But like all pieces of creative work, it has flaws that need to be talked about or else they will be repeated again and again.