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#9 References From The 2000s That Made You Fall In Love With “Good 4 U”

Olivia Rodrigo is the new sweetheart of the pop industry. At only 18, the American actress and singer ー who is the star of the High School Musical series on Disney Plus ー is dominating the 2021 artistic scenario. She released her first solo album, sour on May 21st and her songs are already setting the tongues wagging worldwide.

good 4 u” is one of these hits that exploded on music streams. With a pop-rock beat and a chaotically contagious video clip, it accumulated more than 76 million views on YouTube. According to many Gen Z kids on the internet, much of this success is due to the super nostalgic tone of the production. The 2000s are totally back! Her Campus Casper Libero investigated the single’s aesthetic and brought together some genius references that probably made you fall in love at first sight. Prepare your heart for a nostalgic trip!

First, the 4:3 format

You may have noticed that the “good 4 u” music clip has black stripes in its corners. This is because it was not shot in a widescreen format, which is the most common nowadays. To refer to the 2000s, the video’s first aesthetic strategy is to record the frames in a square format (in technical terms, in a 4:3 ratio), just like the way it was made at the beginning of the millenium.

The unforgettable flip phone

Nothing has a more 2000s vibe than this iconic cell phone model! This peculiar design was popularized by Motorola in 1987, but it was only in the 2000s that it reached its absolute peak. It was in the hands of preppy characters in every teen movie of the decade and represented the essential bagage of many real-life middle schoolers as well. It appears in the very first take of the video clip, already pushing us into this decade’s atmosphere.

The mean cheerleader

This is a classic character from 2000’s teen movies: the super popular cheerleader who is both mean, charismatic and has sort of sociopathic leanings… À la Regina George, in the video clip, Olivia relives the unforgettable plot of the “mean girl”.

But not any mean cheerleader…
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YYxh8hSbwGw

Despite appearing to be a typical cheerleader look, the outfit that Olivia uses in “good 4 u” is an exact replica of the one worn by Mandy Moore’s character in one of the most famous teen movies of the 2000s, “The Princess Diaries”. Lana Thomas was a popular mean classmate of the Genovian heiress, Mia Thermopolis.

Olivia’s Body?

Another film that yielded many easter eggs to this Olivia’s production was “Jennifer’s Body” (2009). It’s a horror comedy starring Megan Fox, which starts with a conflagration and has as its main character a half-manic teenager. What could be more “good 4 u” than that? To top it off, Olivia’s video clip ends with a scene replicated from the film: the “infernal girl” diving into the water with evil eyes.

Twilight type font

You probably found this typeface familiar at first glance ー and for a reason. This blurry font is very close to the one that appears in the titles of movies and books of the “Twilight” saga, another sensation in the 2000s! Nobody confirmed that this was really the reference, but many fans have pointed out this similarity – which is even clearer when, at the end of the clip, Olivia appears walking through a forest that is broadly comparable to the one in which scenes of Bella and Edward were shot.

Strass everywhere!

The beginning of the millennium marked the era of strass accessories! The fashion industry profited a lot at that time customizing everything with these shiny rhinestones. There were even those who sported strass-encrusted cell phones out there ー and, by the way, having one of those was the guilty pleasure of many teenagers of the decade. Olivia brings this trend back, now adapted to a ring light filled with sparkles and pearls.

Hair clips are back!

Along with the beaded jewelry, another fashion trend that is making a comeback is the barrettes’ one. This accessory is one of the greatest fashion achievements of the 2000s and was worn by all the huge celebrities of the time, such as Britney Spears and Hilary Duff.

Is it Paramore?

Another huge reference from the 2000s is in the sonority of the single. This pop rock and pop punk vibe goes back to the beginning of the decade, an era of Avril Lavigne, Linkin Park and Simple Plan. Another band with many similarities to Olivia’s production is Paramore. So much so that one of the group’s songs, “Misery Business” (2007) reached more than 281 streams the day after the debut of “good 4 u”.

We can say that Olivia came to present the homesick hearts of an entire generation. All the songs released by the new international idol are available on digital platforms and you can listen to them whenever you want to feel the tacky and flawless vibe of the 2000s again. Just put on your headphones and travel back in time…

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The article above was edited by Amanda Moraes.

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Helena Cardoso

Casper Libero '21

A journalism student who loves musical theater and dreams about living in Disney World.
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