Just One of the Guys

just-one-of-the-guys-poster“Of course you’re confused. You’re wearing my underwear.”

The Scoop: 1985 PG-13, directed by Lisa Gottlieb and starring Joyce Hyser, Clayton Rohner, William Zabka, and Billy Jayne

Tagline: Terri Griffith is about to go where no woman has gone before.

Summary Capsule: Girl goes trannie to make it big in the hot world of high school journalism

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Justin’s Rating: Ya see, when *I* wear a dress, nobody’s fooled. That’s probably a very good thing.

Justin’s Review: I’ve seen Just One Of The Guys about eighty times so far. But never straight through. This film is one of those that the studios sold to every cable network for five bucks apiece, so pretty much any time of day you can be flicking through the channels and stumble upon it. It’s nothing overly special, yet its goofy “girl pretending to be a guy” plot and affable nature make it the ideal TV junk food.

Our main character, Terri (Joyce Hyser) is a high school journalist with the typical 80’s problems: a shallow college boyfriend, a horny younger brother, and some semi-impossible dream she wants to attain to make her life worth living. Convinced that the world is skewed heavily in favor of the penis-wearing gender, Terri cuts her hair, throws on some hot duds, and starts speaking in a “manly” voice. Which is to say, her normal voice. The only reason she gets away with it is that everyone around her doesn’t question a feminine guy with plucked eyebrows. This is, after all, the era of other androgynous heroes, such as in Real Genius.

The core of the movie is, of course, to see how “the other side” is treated and gain a greater understanding of that.  Terri is borderline cute as a girl, which makes her transformation harder to swallow… but it sort of works. Her attempts to mimic guy speech patterns and movements provide much of the “comedy” here (it’s more of a light-hearted comedic piece, one that never has you laughing out loud). Of course, we all know the moral here: neither gender has it easy, but both are more capable than we usually give credit.

You also can’t miss the incredible 80’s fashion that is on display here; I don’t think I’ve found a film that highlights the spectacular oddity of this decade’s clothing better than this movie. Amid all the spandex, loose ties, feathered hair, and leg warmers, you might be able to spot the bad guy from The Karate Kid, who’s also the bully in this flick. “Sweep the leg, Johnny!” It’s a bit more surreal to have him here when Terri looks a bit like Ralph Macchio (and another character refers to him/her as such).

In the end, I much prefer my cross-dressing movies to be more on the comedic side and less on the “slit my wrists out of depression, thank you Boys Don’t Cry very much” side of things. This is harmless, thoughtless, and genderless… but when there’s nothing else on, you can just indulge. Bit by bit.

You're the best around! Nothing's gonna ever keep you down!

You’re the best around! Nothing’s gonna ever keep you down!

Intermission!

  • A very young Sherilyn Fenn (Twin Peaks) as the girl who hits on Terri
  • Well, this movie could certainly open with a worse pan
  • In THIS family, the daughter goes out onto her balcony in underwear and the son reads Playboy at breakfast
  • Rating guys by looks, then car
  • Face it, nobody wants to “molest” your friend
  • Wow, this kid is stupid horny
  • Her upturned collars move when she talks
  • Her boyfriend is quite the shallow materialist
  • Great fashion tips… such as having a shirt that has a neck as wide as your waist
  • That library is… hot!
  • Her first “guy” outfit
  • Brother teaching her how to adjust herself
  • It’s the bad guy from Karate Kid giving wedgies
  • The geek boys… hehe
  • She really goes out of her way to get changed for gym!
  • You can never separate geeks
  • Terri’s look when the coach says “shirts… skins!” is priceless
  • Girls hitting on other girls pretending to be guys is weirdly hot
  • Nice generic beer
  • Cute shoes!
  • Rick’s happy dance/flexing
  • Brother and sister crawling up the stairs
  • He named his penis “Spike”?
  • Terry getting all girly on Rick in the bathroom
  • Buddy’s bad pick-up lines
  • The geek song is pretty funny
  • There’s a lot of (picture) nudity in this film for a PG-13
  • Fish eat pizza?
  • It’s a prom scene in an 80s teen flick! Who’d have thunk it?

Groovy Quotes

Buddy: I’d rather wallow in my virginity…

Buddy: Don’t get me wrong. It’s not like I’ve never had sex before. I’ve had lots of sex. It’s just that now I’d like to try it with a partner.

Denise: You were in the boy’s locker room?
Terry: Yes!
Denise: Can I be your younger brother?

Terry: Budster, there’s a half-naked woman in your bedroom feeding pizza to some fish and she’s all yours.
Buddy: Sounds too kinky for me.
Terry: Buddy, she needs you; I need you; you need her.
Buddy: Is she really half-naked?
Terry: Maybe more by now.
Buddy: What if you’re lying?
Terry: What if I’m not?
Buddy: Good point – if I’m not back in a week, forward my mail.

Terry: You know, sometimes I just wish I was a guy.
Buddy: No you don’t! The male body needs sex at all times! It’s a living hell!

Terry: Look, maybe my balls don’t itch.
Buddy: All balls itch! It’s a fact!

Terry: Aren’t you embarrassed?
Buddy: Nope. I’m horny. Horny will kick embarrassment’s ass anytime.

Terry: I’m just so confused.
Buddy: Of course you’re confused. You’re wearing my underwear.

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