A teenager who treats her landline phone or cell phone as if it were the most important thing in the world and is on it constantly, and this almost always leads to an insanely high bill. If she uses a cell phone, she may feel more comfortable texting than actually interacting with other people. When she has to baby-sit kids, she might not care about them.
This trope is older than cell phones; it goes back to the proliferation of the home telephone. In the days before cell phones, this often involved a gag about there being only one phone in the house (or two phones on the same line where each extension could listen in on the other). This made it impossible for the poor parents to call while the Bratty Teenage Daughter
tied things up.
Classic trait for the Alpha Bitch
, Valley Girl
, Bratty Teenage Daughter
, and other teenage stereotypes.
Live Action TV
- Stella in Jonas. Her attempt to give up texting results in Sanity Slippage (including ending her sentences with "send").
- Dalia from Suburgatory is rarely seen without her cell phone, usually slumped over it as she texts.
- There have been teens addicted to cell phones on episodes of MTV's True Life. in particular is the episode "I's Addicted to Texting", and one of the subjects followed was a woman who was married and had a baby.
- In The Haunting Hour episode "A Creature Was Stirring", Becky's father has to take her cell phone away mid-conversation to get her to stop talking.
- In an episode of The Brady Bunch, Mr. Brady gets fed up with his kids hogging the phone and running up a huge bill, so he has a payphone installed for them to use.
- Lampshaded and made fun of on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Buffy isn't responding to the Scoobies trying to call her. Giles suggests she might just have her phone unplugged, but Xander responds "It's a statistical impossibility for a teenage girl to unhook her phone."
- In Adventure Time, Valley Girl Lumpy Space Princess is constantly gossiping through her mobile phone even though she's homeless and living in a forest, on canned beans.
- Candace Flynn from Phineas and Ferb is often shown on the phone with best friend Stacy. She seems to carry her cellphone everywhere as well.
- In the episode of The Simpsons where a fortuneteller tells Lisa about her future wedding, teenage Maggie is shown to have her own home phone and always be on it. The joke is, we never hear her voice during the whole episode because Maggie is The Voiceless.
- In the Tom and Jerry shorts "Busy Buddies" and "Tot Watchers", the baby sitter left in charge at Tom's house goes straight to the phone right after the husband and wife leave, only leaving the phone to punish Tom for bothering the baby (when in fact he was returning the baby after it wandered off).
- The Tiny Toon Adventures short "I Was a Teenage Bunny-Sitter" opens with Babs chatting on the phone with her friend Harriet, but then she has to leave to babysit and says she'll call back. After meeting the parents there, she makes a sandwich and calls Harriet back, only to hang up when she has to make mashed potatoes for Duncan (the kid she's baby-sitting). At the end of the cartoon, Babs is sleeping on the couch while Duncan is the one chatting on the phone.
- Teen Titans Go! When Starfire is given the power to "talk like an earth teen" she is practically attached to her new smartphone. When she looses this power, she tosses the device away.