By Erin Blakeley
The Breakfast Club – 1985 – dir. John Hughes – Original Theatrical Trailer
Early on in The Breakfast Club, Brian Johnson, one of the students stuck in Saturday detention is asked to describe the activities of the Physics club, of which he is a member. “I guess you could consider it a social situation,” he replies. “I mean, there are other children in that club.” Today, no self-respecting teenager, on-screen or off, would ever refer to himself as a child. In fact, the word ‘children’ has largely fallen from the lexicon, replaced by shorter, snappier words—kids, teens, tweens—that reflect the growing lack of distinction between adults and their progeny. Yet, the characters in The Breakfast Club—the five high schoolers famously archetyped as the brain, the athlete, the basket case, the princess and the criminal—are children. Each one, save Bender (the criminal), is dropped off at Saturday detention by a parent. And despite the promise of social transformation that is at the heart of the film’s appeal, at the end of the film, after all the truth-telling and boundary-breaking and making out—they get right back in the car with their parents.