If you’re a child of the ’90s, there’s an extremely good chance you’ve seen the 1999 teen rom-com Drive Me Crazy (in fact, there’s an extremely good chance you’ve seen it multiple times). The movie marked Melissa Joan Hart’s first starring role in a major motion picture and (thankfully) introduced the world to a then-unknown Adrian Grenier.
The plot was satisfying and simple: Ex-best friends Nicole (Hart) and Chase (Grenier) pretend to date in order to make the real objects of their affections jealous, only to eventually realize that they’ve fallen in love with each other. It’s highly watchable and I’ve easily seen it at least 20 times…and it drives me freaking crazy.
Don’t get me wrong: I clearly love this movie on some deep and potentially unhealthy level (if I didn’t, I wouldn’t be an adult woman writing an essay about it). It’s full of epic ’90s ensembles, a killer pop-rock sound track, and a genuinely smart and witty female lead (kudos to Hart! Forever and always). But when you rewatch it as a grownup—as I did this past week—there are just one too many frustrating details that can’t be ignored.
So without further ado, here are things about Drive Me Crazy that will likely now drive you crazy.
1Chase clearly looked better BEFORE the makeover.
Fans of the movie will undoubtedly remember that a major plot point occurs when Nicole convinces Chase to pretend to be her boyfriend, which leads to an incredibly ’90s makeover scene. Nicole drags Chase to the mall (R.I.P.) and basically turns him into a walking Gap ad. The only problem? Anyone with working eyeballs can see that he was clearly better off before the transformation.
See: Exhibit A (aka Chase at the beginning of the movie, pre-makeover):
Now, see Chase after said makeover:
I know, I know—it was a different time. But I lived through that time, and I can definitively tell you that the cooler-looking Chase was the pre-makeover model (and again, I know—beauty is in the eye of the beholder and outer appearances don’t really matter…but they do if they’re a major plot point in your movie!).
2We’re not supposed to like Dulcie, even though she’s clearly pretty cool.
Dulcie (perfectly played by Heroes’ Ali Larter) is Chase’s punky, slightly morose ex and the person he spends much of the movie attempting to win back. However, we, the audience, are clearly supposed to know that Dulcie is absolutely no good for Chase/is an all-around unlikable person.
But when you really break it down, all Dulcie’s guilty of is being interested in social activism and holding herself to high standards. She breaks up with Chase in Act 1 when he shows literally zero interest in her passion for animal rights, and she seems genuinely concerned when she sees him change himself for a girl. Does she take herself too seriously? Sure—who doesn’t? But when all is said and done, Dulcie probably grew up to be a super cool and interesting lady.
3Melissa Joan Hart literally throws a heavy book off a hot air balloon while hundreds of feet in the air.
I get it, girl. You’re mad at your absentee father, and you have every right to be. But don’t throw heavy objects from hundreds of feet in the air. Someone could have been killed!
Fans will of course recall that Chase and Nicole reunite/finally make their feelings for each other official at the big dance at the end. But only die-hard fans will likely remember what comes next. The duo—who are also next door neighbors—head back home, only to discover Nicole’s mom and Chase’s dad in a, uh, compromising situation. What’s more, the single parents reveal they’ve been dating for some time, and they’ve decided to move in together.
So let me get this straight: Chase and Nicole—who literally just started dating, are now going to live under the same roof? That seems complicated. Also, what if they eventually decide to see other people once in college? Will they have to do holidays with their ex (aka live a nightmare)? Or what if they stay together, but their parents get married? They’ll be step-siblings.
Why did the writers put this in the movie? Just to torment me?
5And finally, the female friendships are atrocious.
In case you were wondering, unlike say, Clueless, or 10 Things I Hate About You, Drive Me Crazy definitely doesn’t pass the Bechdel Test. In fact, it downright bombs it. The only female “friendship” featured in the entire movie is between Nicole and Alicia (Susan May Pratt), and Alicia spends the whole film manipulating and betraying Nicole—and all for the attention of various male characters. Alicia’s negative force field could potentially have been balanced out by the incredibly sweet Dee Vine, but alas, Nicole never has a single conversation with her.
Are there any parts of Drive Me Crazy (or any ’90s classic that you otherwise love for that matter) that drive you crazy, too? Let us know!