I have to admit, the first time I watched the early Johnny Depp masterpiece Cry-Baby, I was a little more than baffled. Even with it's classic storyline — bad boy meets good girl and worlds collide when they fall in love — I found Lenora's obsession terrifying and Hachetface... definitely lived up to her name. How did a film with the same basic plotline of Grease and, well, every movie ever, end up peppered with so many disturbing little moments?
The short answer is: it's a John Waters film. Disturbing, tacky, and intriguingly retro is his calling card. Actually, by John Waters' standards, this movie actually really tame and subdued. Like if John Waters’ films were reality stars, this would be the Lauren Conrad, not the Teresa Giudice. You ain’t seen nothing, kids.
But for a regular movie, yeah, there are a lot of bizarre moments that I really have a hard time defending. From fierce tongue wars to Cry-Baby's crazy Fire-crotch stalker to all sorts of confusing pregnancies, there are a lot of eyebrow raising moments from this cult favorite. So in celebration of it's 15 year anniversary, I've chronologically collected 23 of the most cringeworthy parts from Cry-Baby. Enjoy the ride!
1. When Wanda, in response to her polio shot, does a bunch of sexy writhing and growling.
Sexy writhing and growling seems to be her standard reaction to most things, though.
2. When Cry-Baby lights a match with his mouth.
Because I guess he's part dragon.
And then he eats it, like it was a sizzling breath mint or something.
3. “We’re SQUARES, Allison, and Squares gotta stick together!”
Cry-Baby's gang is called the Drapes and Allison's normal, boring friends are called, well, the Squares. Which doesn't really make sense, since "Square," is sort of a derogatory term, and I don't think you can reclaim it in the same way you can reclaim a word like "bitch."
4. When these badass rebels go line dancing.
I mean, from West Side Story to Grease, synchronized moves seem to be a great way for greasers to show off their masculinity.
5. When Iggy Pop was naked in a wash bin.
Iggy being naked isn't new or even necessarily problem, but couldn't they given him a bigger bath?
6. "Grandma, I'm so happy knocked up, I wish I was having triplets!"
Side bar: Pepper being on her third child makes 0 percent sense, even by white trash standards. Let's be generous and assume Pepper is 18-years-old, tops.
Her children are about 6 or 7-years-old. So though it's not impossible, are we really supposed to believe that Pepper was getting pregnant in like, 5th grade? My mind hurts.
7. When Cry-Baby, coming to pick Allison up at a talent show, cries sexily in her direction.
Bitches be swooning.
8. When Cry-Baby's stalker decides that flinging her humongous granny panties at him is the way to his heart.
Redheads are crazy.
9. When all the licking happened.
Is... this how people kissed in the 1950s, or have I just been doing it wrong this entire time?
10. When Allison brings up her dead parents while they're making out.
And, even creepier, it somehow isn't an erection-killer.
11. "Electricity killed my parents!"
"So obviously that's why I hired a 3-year-old to draw this electrical chair tattoo on my chest."
12. When Wanda's parents were my parents.
This one's just personal, but Wanda alone has delightful, upbeat, normal parents among her friends who are spawned from Jesus Freaks and disgruntled smokers. Likewise all my friends from high school came from like, broken families, and despite my leather jackets, red lipstick and oodles of cleavage, I had a serious Leave It to Beaver situation going on.
I likewise made that face a lot.
13. When Allison collects a jar of her tears.
AND THEN DRINKS THEM.
EW, OH MY GOD, WTF.
14. When this happened.
I didn't know the Asshole Parade was in town.
15. When Cry-Baby's stalker tells the media that she's pregnant with his child, to what gain?
Redheads are crazy.
16. When an incarcerated Cry-Baby created nothing but "Allison" license plates, proving to be the worst working inmate ever.
That's not how cars work, Cry-Baby, oh my god. UNLESS he's making nameplates to sell to different Allisons across the world from his Etsy shop, in which case, wash.
17. When Wanda leaves her house only to find a crowd of people outside waiting to laugh at her.
Also similar to my high school experiences.
18. When this didn't seem like appropriate font for an orphanage.
19. When Belvedere, Ramona, and Peppers release all the children from the orphanage for the thrill.
"Bye! Good luck in the real world! Try not to pregnant before middle school or whatever!"
20. "I had my baby. Isn’t he cute? Wave to Allison."
Redheads are crazy.
21. When licking happened some more.
NOT EVEN THE LEAST BIT SANITARY.
22. When Baldwin kidnaps Allison's grandmother for a dangerous game of chicken for no real reason.
"You were born a Square and now you'll die a Square," he claims. But like, if that threat is why he's doing this, is HE expecting to die? I don't... why is this happening?
23. Likewise Pepper somehow up in Cry-Baby's car during the dangerous game of chicken... after she goes into labor.
And then she gives birth in the car.
A real fairytale ending.
Images: Universal Pictures (30)