The Runaways is a testament to how far women in the media and in the music industry have come and yet how far we have to go. There is no denying the importance of Joan Jett and Cherie Currie. Without them, there would be no Madonna, Lady Gaga, the Donnas or the Gossip. But watching a middle-aged man encourage female teenagers to flaunt their sexuality makes my skin crawl a little. You have to believe that these young women wanted to, let me paraphrase Kim Fowley, “dangle their sex in front of men and then snatch it away.” But it really seems like they had to do that just so that they could play rock and roll.
Watching rock stars get too far into sex and drugs on film is nothing new, but watching a 15-year old girl who’s thin enough to break in half get strung out on cocaine and booze is, well, a little weird. During the movie I kept thinking, “where were these girl’s parents? Would this happen today?” Sadly, it does indeed happen today, it’s just packaged a little differently. Also, and luckily for this, minors have more protection. One can only hope that their parents are guardians help to make good decisions for them.
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Girl in a Coma perform The Runaways hit "Cherry Bomb" with special guest Cherie Currie of The Runaways at SXSW March 19, 2010.