YMMV / Sixteen Candles

  • Ethnic Scrappy: Long Duk Dong is a borderline example: he does come away from the story with more physical injuries than the other characters, but he's also had the night of his life and effortlessly found a really cool girlfriend.
  • Fridge Horror: If Caroline is already of legal age, her having sex with Ted could be viewed as statutory rape... even though it was nonconsensual.
  • Hollywood Homely: A Discussed Trope involving Samantha. It's even discussed between Jake and a friend of his (who is befuddled he'd consider leaving the sexy and built Caroline for the younger and less "mature" Samantha).
    Jake: Do you know Samantha Baker?
    Friend: Sophomore, right?
    Jake: Yeah, what do you think of her?
    Friend: I don't.
    Jake: Would you ever go out with her?
    Friend: Depends on how much you pay me.
    Jake: She's not ugly.
    Friend: There's nothing there, man. It's not ugly, it's just void.
  • Retroactive Recognition: John and Joan Cusack make early appearances. He has a featured role as Bryce, while she's a wacky background extra with no linesójust a neck brace.
  • Scary Black Man: A very brief moment in the beginning, but Sam and her friend are having a discussion in the school hallway about what Sam wants for her birthday. Sam says she wants a Trans-Am and later says a black one. Her friend looks HORRIFIED at the thought of her being with a black man and even asks, "A black guy???" But then Sam corrects her saying "Black Trans-Am. Pink guy." The relief on her friend's face after the correction is telling.
  • Unfortunate Implications: It's been argued that the film tacitly endorses sexual assault. Ted relentlessly harasses Sam and is rewarded for it throughout the story. Jake also tells Ted to take the drunk Caroline home, saying "she's so blitzed she won't know the difference". They end up having sex (initiated by Caroline) and she says next morning that she enjoyed it.
  • Values Dissonance: So much of this movie would definitely not fly with today's audiences:
    • The male leads' casual encouragement of date rape is pretty cringe-worthy nowadays.
    • The character Long Duk Dong is a pretty awkward walking, talking Asian stereotype complete with an exaggerated accent Played for Laughs and a gong sound effect whenever he shows up.
    • The casual use of the word "fag" and "faggot" would be considered very un-PC.
      • For those aware of its meaning, "bohunk" (in reference to Sam's future brother-in-law) isn't much better.
    • Nudity and dropping of the word "fuck" in a PG rated film would certainly catch many viewers off guard, especially the shower scene in the first quarter of the movie, which appears out of nowhere.
    • The treatment of geeks as weird and creepy social outcasts would be especially shocking today considering that geek culture is very trendy and mainstream.
    • The use of Joan Cusack's neck-braced character (who can't seem to drink her fluids without difficulty and barely speaks) as a Butt-Monkey reads as rather ableist now. As the student guide website Shmoop puts it:
      You know how mean everyone is, making fun of Lisa Kudrow for having scoliosis in Romy and Michele's High School Reunion? If you laugh at that, you are those people. That is all.
    • The "black guy" joke mentioned above is rather cringy, especially with interracial relationships being much more common in real life than it was at the time.
  • What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: As mentioned above in Values Dissonance, despite being a PG rating, there's a lot of stuff in it that might be inappropriate for today's audience.
  • The Woobie: Sam. Her entire family forgets her 16th birthday because they're so focused on her older sister's wedding, and she's in love with Jake Ryan, who she thinks doesn't even know she exists.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/SixteenCandles