Women’s Lib! or #76, Miss Teen Sweet Valley

Only in Sweet Valley: the Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring a Miss Teen Sweet Valley contest and holding it in the SVH auditorium. They are doing this as a fundraiser. How this will make them money I don’t know. I guess they are expecting all the pervs out there to buy tickets. And also, why the fuck is this allowed in the school? Am I surprised by it?

Liz and her fucking matching barettes.

Jessica is ecstatic of course, and is sure she will win. In fact, she waits a bit to sign up because she doesn’t want to make the other contestants scared.

It was hard to keep her intention of entering , and winning, to herself. But it was better to wait and see who else was signing up in order to evaluate her competition. If the other candidates knew Jessica was entering, they were bound to get discouraged and withdraw. In either case, the pageant would be canceled or Jessica would win simply because she was the only person in the contest.

How do the ghostwriters sleep at night?

Elizabeth, on the other hand, suddenly grows a spine and goes on a campaign to get it canceled, because she feels it is demeaning to women. She writes a long article in The Oracle. The Sweet Valley News reads it and wants to print it. Seriously, because the ONLY news worth printing in Sweet Valley has to do with the Wakefield twins. Plus, the local news LOVES the story and has the twins on tv to debate the issue. Please let that be a shitty local access channel, and not the nightly news.

Jessica really really wants to win. Why? So her brother’s college friend will notice her. And she’s an egomanical sociopath. Wow, great reasons. The guy, Frazer, actually ignores jess and doesn’t seem interested. Wh-wh-wh-what? How is it biologically possible that a guy ignores Jessica?

Meanwhile, Jess is taking modern dance lessons to work on her talent portion. Her teacheris very short with her and keeps giving her a hard time. That’s impossible! Jessica is amazing at everything she does! How dare someone day otherwise! Oh, actually, he’s hard on her because HE’S NEVER SEEN TALENT LIKE HERS…EVER. And it’s his duty to encourage such talent. Again, stop. validating. Jessica.

Liz finds a loophole in which she can get the pageant cancelled, but all for her love of Jess she lets it go on. Any person wishing to have an event in the school auditorium needs permision from the superintendent, who has been out of town “visiting the Soviet Uniton meeing with Soviet educators.” The fuck? He’s a superintendent of schools, not a spy for the CIA.

So Jessica fucks up during the dance portion, and is all ashamed and doesn’t want to go. In order to help her, Liz enters the swimsuit part posing as Jessica, because doncha know that she has a perfect size-six, tanned body.

So, Jessica finally wins. And she starts to think…I screwed up the dance portion…did I really win just because I’m pretty? Of course because she is about to have a profound thought about the superficiality of it all, it is forgotten of course. Through rumors she heard that the prize was 10,000 bucks and a shopping spree, but it turns out the prizes are reallya haircut at the new styling salon in the mall, a month’s free bowling at Al’s Alley, a set of encyclopedias (omg remember those?) a twenty-five dollar gift certificate for Things for Girls, ten free movie rentals at Quick-dash. Bwahahaha.

Ok, but then…this is infuriating. Frazer then shows up and is like, I’ve liked you this whole time but was afraid to ask you out. WHAT? It’s like even when Jessica doesn’t get what she wants it’s like it’s because she is so awesome that it will always work out in the end anyway.

Other thoughts:

One of the other contestants is deaf (not Regina, she’s dead) and Jessica was all, oh it’s okay because her hearing aids were hidden behind her hair.

20 thoughts on “Women’s Lib! or #76, Miss Teen Sweet Valley

  1. EnidRollins says:

    Wow, Liz, way to stand up for your beliefs. Not even I’ve done that. And it’s OMG sooo great to have a sister who’s your perfect size..so she can cheat and lie for you. Someone took out the spine Liz put in after 74 books. Oy!

  2. Merrie says:

    Maybe it’s because I just read the recap of Sweet Valley Twins Book. No. 2 over at 1bruce1, but the modern dance guy totally remind me of the twins’ ballet teacher, where Jessica was the better dancer but Madame whatever liked Elizabeth more, but realizes her mistake at the end and proclaims Jessica is ‘born to dance.”

  3. Jessa Fields says:

    Any person wishing to have an event in the school auditorium needs permision from the superintendent, who has been out of town “visiting the Soviet Union meeing with Soviet educators.”

    According to Amazon, this book was published in October 1991. In December 1991, the Soviet Union was dissolved. I’m sensing an interesting backstory…

  4. ihatewheat says:

    Merrie: TOTALLY! I hate how Jessica is THAT GOOD that people have to lie to her about it, because if her talent were unleashed it would be dangerous.

    Jessa: I feel like there is a conspiracy: the SVH superintendent is RESPONSIBLE for the demise of the Soviet Union.

  5. Gretchen says:

    Wow, Liz, way to really exemplify how much you believe in your feminist principles.

    Also – it makes perfect sense that the superintendent of Sweet Valley schools would meet with Soviet educators. They wouldn’t meet with, you know, the Secretary of Education or even the Deputy Secretary. Nope. Sweet Valley’s got it all figured out (obviously, what with the assemblies where a douchey guy chooses a girl in front of the entire school and whatnot) and could teach those damn commies a thing or two…

  6. Jessa Fields says:

    Jessa: I feel like there is a conspiracy: the SVH superintendent is RESPONSIBLE for the demise of the Soviet Union.

    Da, moya podruga. Didn’t you read the very Super Special, Sweet Valley Oblast? It’s the one where First Secretary Patman bulldozes Fowler Crest and builds a kolkhoz, Elizabeth faces the tricky task of “disappearing” those size eight and above from the yearbook, and Jessica sends a jealous cheerleader to a forced labor camp.

  7. Club X says:

    I loved this recap…hysterical! Ihatewheat, I would pay you to do recaps of everything in the universe just so I could laugh all day long. You are awesome!!

  8. Magenta Galaxy says:

    I also hope that it was a debate on the crappy local channel and not Dateline NBC or something.

    A store called Things for Girls? Hmmm…what could they possibly sell?

  9. Kate says:

    You didn’t mention my personal favorite part of this book- when Jess does the Q & A part of the pageant, is asked something about who is the strongest influence in her life, she gives like a two word answer that a five year old would think was too trite- something like “my sister- she’s really nice to me” and wins.

  10. kiwimusume says:

    Of course the dance teacher has never seen talent like Jessica’s before. When have the Wakefield twins ever not been amazing at something? They are, as one Babysitter’s Club fanfic writer put it, canon Mary-Sues.

  11. Dwanollah says:

    What Kate said. It was like she was given bonus points for the novelty of having a twin sister so she could coo the usual “We’re best friends! She’s always there for me!” stuff and all the audience would go “Awwwww” and wipe away tears or something.

    And don’t worry, Liz. It’s okay to be a feminist, as long as you aren’t one of those fat, ugly, unshaven, lesbo-dykey ones, so you still have the option of strutting around in a bikini and playing right into all of the problematic stereotypes of male-dominated culture. Oh, but as long as it was for YOUR TWIN SISTER, it’s just a-ok peachy keen. *insert copious eye rolling*

  12. Jadie says:

    This one is actually #76, and Almost Married is #102, not #101, and Jessica’s secret love is #107, not #104. No harm meant, it’s just easier to find a recap that way.

  13. janeprimrose says:

    Odd fact: On these ‘classic’ covers, Jessica often looks strikingly like my foster sister Karen, yet Elizabeth never does. Jessica is particularly Karenish on this one and that early Christmas special edition (where Elizabeth is opening a present and Jessica is making a fake ‘ooh’ face over it). It’s not that Karen is anything like the bitch Jessica is – she just has the same features! How does that work?

  14. katie says:

    lol. i totally learnt nothing from that book.
    whats the moral to it? all i get is that if ur beautiful and manipulative…u get everything.

    i agree. jess does not look all that gorgeous.

    liz’s expression: exactly the same in ‘love letters’..


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