Why Is Every Cool Guy High School Villain Named Steve? (Plus Thoughts On The First Half Of “Stranger Things”)

Screen Shot 2016-08-01 at 2.10.12 PM

If you haven’t watched “Stranger Things” on Netflix yet you should check it out. It’s terrifying and gripping but actually has a cool story and plot. I’m not into horror movies* and scary shows generally, but the backbone of the show (the writing) is there so I’m chugging through the frightening shit to figure out what the hell happened to Will Byers.

But who is Will Byers? Glad you asked. Will is a boy, about 12-years-old, who lives with his mom and brother in rural Indiana in 1983. He and his three best friends- Mike, Lucas and Dustin- are classic “geeks.” They play Dungeons & Dragons, are best friends with their science teacher, head the AV club, and get bullied by a kid named Troy.

The main conflict comes when Will disappears after riding home from a game of Dungeons & Dragons. The whole town goes looking for him as Police Chief Hopper, who has some palpable sexual tension with Will’s mom, leads the search. Bingo bango, sounds like a typical kid-gone-missing storyline right? Wrong. Why else would I set it up this way? Without going too deep into spoilers, there’s supernatural elements and a possible government conspiracy. The show goes off the rails.

Anyway there’s also a subplot, that is starting to come together with the main story arc, of Mike’s sister Nancy dating this high school douchebag named Steve. Unsurprisingly, Steve has perfect hair and tries to bed every chick in the school. In fact Nancy even says the phrase “another notch on your belt,” which has probably been said to about 18 different movie character Steves in the 80’s. And, yes, she does end up sleeping with him and regretting it. Vintage Steve.

But why is every cool guy high school villain named Steve? Is there a pact between a bunch of film makers who got bullied by the same guy? Is there just a higher percent chance that your kid will be a bully with phenomenal flow if you name him Steve? Was it one nerd who started this whole trend? Was the name Brad already taken?

So many questions. I’ve put together a list of some of my favorite “Steve’s” so we can figure out which came first. The self-obsessed, quietly handsome guy with great locks? Or the name?

Screen Shot 2016-08-01 at 1.45.57 PM

Steve from Stranger Things. He fits all the criteria. Vicious lettuce with a few strands falling in front of his forehead. Just to let you know that, yes, he could have that thing sitting still, but he lets a little drip down. Let’s you know he likes to party.

Screen Shot 2016-08-01 at 1.48.19 PM

Steve Ellinger from “My Date with the President’s Daughter.” A Disney movie that not everyone has seen produced arguably the most stereotypical “Steve.” Steve Ellinger was a bad-ass. He rode a motorcycle, wore leather, liked to take chances, thought he was entitled to the hottest girl without even trying, and made fun of a nerd’s love for magic. Just a very clean-cut, proper high school bully. The record books do not show if Steve went off to college, but if he did, I’d imagine he joined an unrecognized frat, got kicked out of school, and spent the rest of his days hanging at his local town bar selling fake ID’s to 17-year-olds.

Screen Shot 2016-08-01 at 1.46.17 PM

Steve from Full House. He wasn’t actually a bully, in fact he was a pretty genuine guy. But he belongs on this list because his hair was unbelievable, he wore a letterman jacket, and his name was Steve. His favorite things to do were eating the entire Tanner fridge and breaking up and getting back together with D.J., who he playfully called “Deeg.” If that’s not a fictional high school guy named Steve, then I don’t know what is.

Screen Shot 2016-08-01 at 1.47.21 PM

Steve Stifler. All-time high school movie character, under-the-radar Steve. Most only refer to him as “Stifler.” Not a textbook Steve in the sense that he’s not really a cool guy. He thinks he’s a cool guy, but he’s kind of a dweeb. Still, he’s a dedicated bully and sports a nice understated haircut. Oh and he also claimed to sleep with 23 girls his freshman year at Michigan State. Pretty good numbers but let’s be honest, Steve Ellinger probably pulled that in one semester.

*I’m not a horror movie guy because why would I want to watch something that scares me? I already have enough anxiety as it is. I don’t need a show to make me jump out of my skin. Seems counterproductive.

Related Posts

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *