What ‘Mean Girls’ on Broadway Is Really Like

The well known comedic phenomenon that is one of the most quoted movies to date-- ‘Mean Girls,’ hit Broadway in March of 2018. Tina Fey helped transform her most favored comedy into a Broadway hit. The story of Cady Heron, a teenage girl that moves from Africa to public school and gets caught up in the cliques and cliches of high school. The comedy story of the high school mayhem added some original songs and choreography dance moves and set the stage.  

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In the musical ‘Mean Girls,’ the two best friends of Cady, Damien and Janis, portray this as a “cautionary tale.” It’s set up as the story being told from Damien and Janis telling the tale of Cady Heron and how she almost killed a girl because she pushed her in front of a bus. Damien and Janis are active characters in this musical as they have multiple singing and dancing numbers showcasing their importance. It seems as Damien’s voice is showcased more with his musical numbers and witty dialogue. The actor who played Damien, in my opinion, was hands down the best performer on that stage. 

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The lead Cady Heron was definitely no Lindsey Lohan. No one can top the iconic cast that was put together for the film rendition. That being said, everyone did a pretty good job even though they had to live in the shadows of some phenomenal actors. The actress who played Janis didn’t quite have the spunk and fire that Lizzy Caplan did. Damien’s character most definitely overshadowed Janis in their collaborated scenes. 

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Even though they had to convert the movie into a musical, they did a pretty good job of including all the iconic moments. Most of the favorite quotes and scenes were carried into the musical. The famous quote, “she doesn’t even go here,” you can bet was used in the musicals rendition. The only quote I was sad to see not make it into the musical was a line from Regina’s mom, “Do you guys need anything? Some snacks? A condom?” I can’t tell you why but that is one of my favorite lines from the movie that I feel should have been in the musical! 

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Since ‘Mean Girls’ came out in 2004 when social media wasn’t as big of an issue as it is now, the musical modernized it with showing the effects of social media with popularity and bullying. Janis and Damien did a little voiceover explaining to the audience the side effects of social media and how it can be abused. With all the humor and light-heartedness the directors tried to add some life lessons and important topics, especially for teens. 

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Since it is a musical there were cheesy tunes every few lines or so. Singing about high school and popularity. The music and lyrics are not Tony nomination worthy, but they are catchy. The musical wasn’t a musical you go to hear the music, it’s one you go to for entertainment. It was not a musical that you’d want to download the music and jam out to on your commute to work, but is overall just a musical you’ll see because it’s funny and entertaining. 

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The musical was not what I was expecting. I’m not sure what I was expecting when I walked into the theater. It was certainly a fun time that had the audience laughing. Aside from all the super cheesy moments, it was a good musical. If you happen to find yourself attending the show just make sure to not set too high of expectations for it.