I didn’t quite know what a Manic Pixie Dream Girl was until my friend sent me this video on Youtube.
After watching I decided to start doing more research on this ‘trope’ and what it is all about. To which I got this definition.
“A Manic Pixie Dream Girl or MPDG, is a term coined by film critic Nathan Rabin after seeing Elizabethtown. It refers to “that bubbly, shallow cinematic creature that exists solely in the fevered imaginations of sensitive writer-directors to teach broodingly soulful young men to embrace life and its infinite mysteries and adventures.” A pretty, outgoing, wacky female romantic lead whose sole purpose is to help broody male characters lighten up and enjoy their lives.”
And then this video:
I sat and really thought about it for a few days, I know the characters they refer to. Like Natalie Portman’s character in Garden State, Ramona Flowers in Scott Pilgrim and so many others. Though it surprised me other characters that got put into the category as an MPDG such as Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s and even Maude in Harold and Maude. I would have never put them into this category, but apparently some do.
But this got me really thinking, what about those girls, like myself who on some level identify with characters like that. Their quirkiness, the pursuit of happiness and being different? Does that make me a Manic Pixie Dream Girl, and if so, am I looked at as just a woman who comes into men’s life as something to push them without wishes of my own? Sure, I do support the men in my lives by being a little more light and whimsical as I have tend to just be attracted to men who might fit the trope of Soulful Brooding Male. But I have wishes and dreams of my own, I have likes and dislikes. I exist outside of them. I write and create, I am my own muse. Yes I have a childlike look a the world but that is because I choose to, I choose to smile and look at things without taking a cynical eye to it and allow the world. Its not wrong that I am this type of person from a feminist point of view, because to me its a way of owning my feminine side. I am not there to be quirky on command.
To quote a character often mistaken for a MPDG, Clementine Kruzynski from Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless mind. “Too many guys think I’m a concept, or I complete them, or I’m gonna make them alive. But I’m just a fucked-up girl whose lookin’ for my own peace of mind; don’t assign me yours.”
I’m a Manic Pixie Girl, there’s nothing dreamlike about me.