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Movie v. TV Show Casting Brawl! - Baby-sitters Club Snark-fest! [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Dissecting the unintentional hilarity of The Baby-sitters Club.

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Movie v. TV Show Casting Brawl! [Jul. 10th, 2012|03:14 pm]
Baby-sitters Club Snark-fest!


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Well, I don’t have any of the books on me at the moment and am moving on Saturday. So I decided to post a poll/snark of casting issues! Dun dun dun! Both the movie and show are clusterfucks and bastardizations of an already-flawed, but lovable series, am I right? So let's see which one did a better job of casting fail!

I’m going to give my snarky opinion of the movie v. television series casting and see how you guys feel about the casting as well. At this point, I’m just doing the club but there’s potential for secondary characters! Let’s see who wins-show or movie?

By the way, this makes me wish I was a game programmer because then I could make something like this to go along with the snark:

Too good to be true, no?

Up first: Everyone's favorite badass, Kristy Thomas.
Avriel Hillman
Schuyler Fisk.

I think most people agree with me on this one: Even as a kid I thought Schuyler Fisk was HORRIBLY miscast as Kristy Thomas. I wanted to see the show Kristy! Movie Kristy had a voice so high-pitched glassware in China break every time a kid pops the VHS or DVD of this sucker in. It’s not the reddish hair that bothers me, but the fact that she’s not authoritative at all, looks younger than thirteen, and is simply not believable as head of the club-does this girl look like she started ANYTHING? Like anybody would listen to her? The outfits they give her make her look like a bullied kid on the playground, not a bully. Avriel Hillman, in my opinion, is the best cast on the TV show- Kristy at her best and who I picture when I think of Kristy Thomas. Is she an Oscar worthy actress? God, no. But I’d take her over Schuyler anytime. I’d even take her fanny pack over anything movie Kristy wears. And I hate fanny packs.

Also, if this Kristy had been in the movie, she would have been pounding her dad in the dirt for abandoning her again, not running away sobbing the carnival. I like to picture her stealing the fake shotgun from the gamestands and chasing Patrick down. Or putting sugar in the gas tank of his creeper van.

Winner: Tv Show!

Next: Our favorite dummy, Claudia Kishi!

Jeni F. Winslow

Tricia Joe
Movie Claudia looks Asian and for many that’s a big plus. But I find her to be a cardboard replica of our dear, twit Claudia. Honestly, in the movie she doesn’t wear anything particularly cool, her art sucks, and she says nothing of value. Hell, that THING she's making on the porch makes TV Claudia's "jewels" look Louvre worthy! Movie Claudia is just whining about possibly failing a test. Show Claudia has a bad rep for not looking Asian enough, but hey, at least she wears crazy outfits and does the “dumb” look pretty well.

Winner: TV show!

Next up: Stacey McGill, our fave streetwalker!
Jessica Prunell

Bre Blair.

Show Stacey is gorgeous, but I’m sorry- she just doesn’t say Stacey at all to me. That permanent grin and “nice girl” demeanor is not our stank Stacey. I don’t see it as believable at all that she’s supposed to be a street smart (Manhattan street smart, that is) New Yorker. She looks so delicate that she’ll get kidnapped right off the Subway or give her allowance money to someone who asks. Movie Stacey looks like I envision Stacey to look. I could believe that she spends a lot of time shopping and talking about boys whereas TV Stacey seems too innocent. I give my vote to Bre Blair.

Winner: Movie!

Next up: Our lovely hidden bitchmeister, Mary Anne Spier!
TV show:
Meghan Lahey

Rachel Leigh Cook
Even though Rachel Leigh Cook has the hair and innocent look down perfectly, show MA’s features actually make me think MA. Even if she is quite tall and has very light hair. Also, I like the relationship between show MA and Dawn better, even if they fight a lot. I could believe them as friends and stepsisters wheras in the movie, they felt like strangers chatting on the bus with how disconnected they were. Many are going to disagree with me, but I pick show MA.

Winner: TV show!

Next up: Our favorite hippie hypocrite, it's Dawn Schafer!
TV Show:
Melissa Chasse

Larisa Oleynik

I loved Larisa Oleynik when I was a kid, guys. Alex Mack, 10 Things I Hate About You, hello! But even then I found her to be so out of place in this movie. She just looks like a wannabe hippie and doesn’t have any of that bitchface we “love” about Dawn on here. I think if Alan Gray really had a crush on Dawn (which is inexplicable since he threw spaghetti and meatballs *snicker* on her in that one book but is shown to be a harmless runt in the movie) she would have a little more sass to throw at him than standing there being weirded out. She has the personality of a toothpick in the movie no matter how much they tried to hippie her up with a braid in her hair and seeds for dinner. Wow, you wild thang! Melissa Chasse may be whiny, but that’s closer to Dawn. She also looks more like Dawn when her hair’s not fucked up.

Winner: TV Show!

Up Next: Our Fave Punching Bag, Mallory Pike!
TV show:
Meghan Andrews
Stacy Linn Ramsower
Oh, Lord. I’ve seen every description under the sun for these girls. One of my favorites says that Mallory looks “suitably unfortunate” hahaha. As far as I remember, neither Mallory does much at all. I think movie Mallory looks more convincing as Mallory (even with the dumpy clothes they gave her), but she has absolute no chemistry with Jessi, who’s supposed to be her best friend. I’ll get to that in a minute. So since both just stand there to get dumped on (like in the movie when they say “yay!” when she gets cake and then glare when it melts), I’m going to call a draw.

Winner: Tie!

Up next: Wangsty Jessi!
TV show:
Nicolle Rochelle
Zelda Harris

If any character is more abused than Mallory, it’s Jessi. First off, in the movie she looks like she should be being baby-sat. I imdb-ed up the actress and unless they filmed the movie RIGHT before releasing it, then she was probably still 9. That’s right- NINE GODDAMN YEARS OLD. Because I would trust my children with someone that age.9 is even too young in the magical land of Stoneybrook! Perhaps that’s why she and Mallory don’t seem a good match- the actress playing Mallory was probably about twelve. The movie tries desperately to throw her personality trait out there and she dances in the street; Movie, Jessi was a dancer in the books not an asshat. Minus points off for when she neglects David Michael, who looks like he actually needs help, to go find some girl’s imaginary friend. Show Jessi wins by a landslide, even if she probably doesn’t dance a snit. She and Mallory also have good chemistry, at the very least, like when they run around town in doofy sunglasses.

Does not exist in the movie and I don’t think she does in the show, either. It’s been years, correct me if I’m wrong!

Does not exist in either format because her character had not yet been created!

Grand Finale:
Logan in the closet Bruno!
TV Show:

Erin Lawton

Austin O'Brien
Oh, jeez. Movie Logan is horribly miscast but TV Logan is just as laughable even if he’s actually blond. One southern sounding word for every five hundred non-southern words? I’m going to hunt down clips to compare them. *deliberates* Movie Logan looks wayyyy too old for MA. In the stable scene he looks like a pedophile around young girls lmao. But he stands there like a weakling when Cokie is being rude to his girlfriend and holds a riding hat and shakes like she just threatened to cut off his wang while he was sleeping. It’s pretty hilarious and as much as I love teasing Logan about femininity, he is definitely more assertive in the books. Show Logan just seems better to me, even if his accent fails. Way better than movie guy’s attempt. Also, props for some actually cute dialogue between them rather than that awkward kiss in front of a bunch of kids in the movie as Logan does nothing about Cokie being mean to his girlfriend and attempting to ask him out. "I didn't say yes!" Say no, you girly man!
Pikachu-er, Logan from the show, I choose you!

Winner: TV Show!
So let’s tally it up: And the winner from my perspective is…

The show!!!

Agree, disagree? We all know comments can be just as epic as snarks so show me your analyses!

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[User Picture]From: 3_foot_6
2012-07-10 10:38 pm (UTC)
Nice - I was thinking of doing a comparison!

The only movie character I prefer to the TV character is Bre Blair's Stacey - she definitely has a big city, slightly snotty, older-than-her-years (no, goddammit, I will not call it "sophisticated") vibe. Aside from being the most horrific actress and having a perma-grin that gives me nightmares, TV Stacey played her like Mary Anne; she was disgustingly sweet and soft-spoken and never said anything too negative. Though props for having a real perm. That thing was MASSIVE in some episodes.

ITA with you about Mary Anne. I disliked Rachael Leigh Cook as Mary Anne, even though I like her as an actress, because she just strikes me as someone better at edgier or bitchier roles. Every time she says "I'm not going to cry" in the BSC movie I yell, "That's because you look like you're going to cut a bitch instead!" The Hulk may not have looked the part described in the book as well, but she totally was Mary Anne.
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[User Picture]From: awishfuldreamer
2012-07-10 11:31 pm (UTC)
Rachel Leigh Cook would have made for a better Kristy than Schuyler Fisk. I guess they thought giving her the hairdo was enough, but the movie is so full of fail it's not much of a surprise.

About TV Stacey, I totally agree! Not that any of them were good but her...*shudder*
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[User Picture]From: fallenidol_453
2012-07-10 11:19 pm (UTC)
Nice comparison! However, is my computer going crazy or are there no images of movie!MA or movie!Claudia?
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[User Picture]From: awishfuldreamer
2012-07-10 11:25 pm (UTC)
The images should all be there. Sometimes I have to restart my computer or use a different browser for images on here to show up. :)
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[User Picture]From: irishgypsie
2012-07-10 11:40 pm (UTC)
I mostly agree with you, particularly about Kristy and Stacey. I disagree about Mallory though, and here's why. As evidenced by the screenshot you used, show Mallory was WAY too old to be a believable 11 year old. And I personally think she was pretty, especially in those later episodes. It's been awhile since I saw all of the episodes but I know I liked the later ones better and Mallory never really struck me as terribly dorky or awkward in the show. Movie Mallory looks exactly how I picture Mallory to look; cute and average looking - not hideously malformed or too pretty. She had the proper dork demeanor too. So my vote goes to movie!Mallory even though I do agree with you about the lack of chemistry with Jessi. There too I agree - movie!Jessi was as bad of a miscast as Kristy was, since Zelda Harris was too young and couldn't dance for shit. Nicolle I think danced a little bit in one or two episodes, but not ballet. What confuses me is why it was so hard for the casting directors to find appropriate actors? The BSC are all very narrowly defined...there must have been at least one black 11 or 12 year old actress who could also dance ballet (or at least could fake it). Why on earth would they cast a 9 year old??

I hated both Logans...but then I hate Logan period so it would be pretty darn hard for any Logan actor to win me over. :)
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[User Picture]From: awishfuldreamer
2012-07-10 11:56 pm (UTC)
Now that you mention it, I seem to remember the show TRYING very hard to make Mallory dorky. That horrendous wig (not in the screenshot, but on other occasions) and then in one episode she just moans about her nose and makes cringe-worthy faces. I'd have to watch it again to really jog my memory. Movie Mallory suffered from not being very developed, but she sure did look like Mallory should.

I couldn't find the shooting dates for the film, but since it's usually several months before release, I would guess that Zelda was still nine or had just turned ten. Either way she's far too young and her line delivery was gag-worthy.

T_T Don't you wish Cam Geary was real?

Edited at 2012-07-10 11:58 pm (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: siriusly_lupin
2012-07-10 11:55 pm (UTC)
I completely agree with this! I loved the show when I was little, and I saw the episodes so many times. The actors actually kind of became cemented in my mind as the characters. When the movie came out, I ended up horribly disappointed, because I thought almost all of the actors were horribly miscast. I agree that Bre Blair was the only one who did a better job in the movie than her show counterpart.
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[User Picture]From: awishfuldreamer
2012-07-11 03:58 am (UTC)
So disappointing. I enjoyed the movie as a kid but still was especially dissatisfied with Kristy since she was my favorite. I was like "who's this whiny runt and where's the big bad president?!"
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From: shatisarockgod
2012-07-11 05:08 am (UTC)
I honestly have to go with the tv show all the way around. Might just be a sign of favoritism since I preferred the tv show to the movie even as a kid. I just think the tv show actresses and actor either looked and/or acted enough like the characters. Maybe it's just a time thing for me. Maybe if the movie had been released before the series I'd be siding with all the movie actresses/actor.

Edited at 2012-07-11 05:11 am (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: queenhyprshadow
2012-07-11 06:21 am (UTC)
I definitely think movie Stacey looks more like Stacey from the books. Bre is gorgeous!

I find Mary Anne a tie. Meghan makes an adorable, longer haired Mary Anne while Rachel looks just like a real life, short haired Mary Anne. Both have personality down.

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[User Picture]From: guitar_hwy_rose
2012-07-11 11:33 am (UTC)
Ha, this is great. I agree with you on all of them. I reckon Avriel Hillman was BORN to play Kristy in the TV show. Even though I absolutely hate Kristy in the books, I don't mind her in the show because Avriel portrays her so well. Both Staceys are very pretty, but Bre Blair is stunning and exactly how I have always pictured Stacey. Both Jessis do nothing but piss me off. Larissa Oleynik is an awful Dawn and although I hate Melissa Chasse, she was definitely more suited to the part. I think they got TV Logan pretty right; the movie Logan is just... wtf.
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[User Picture]From: guitar_hwy_rose
2012-07-11 11:36 am (UTC)
I also think Meghan Andrews was quite cute and definitely my preferred Mallory. The movie was just goddamn awful, a total letdown after idolising the shows for so long.
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[User Picture]From: captaintwinings
2012-07-11 05:08 pm (UTC)
I feel like Larissa Oleynik and Rachel Leigh Cook should have dyed their hair and switched roles. I like both actresses, but not for the parts they played. Larissa Oleynik is cute in a wholesome girl next door kind of way, and she has this sweetness about her that says Mary Anne to me. Meanwhile, Rachel Leigh Cook looks like someone who would be told she should be a model or an actress, and she could pull off the conflicting niceness and bitchiness of Dawn's personality.
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[User Picture]From: xand_so_it_isx
2012-07-12 09:00 am (UTC)
You're right, they would have been better switched. Like I really wanted to like them in the movie because they were my favorites, but they just don't seem right. I always assumed that it was because the other actresses were totally unknown to me but I knew those two from other things and as much as I loved Alex Mack she just wasn't Dawn, but I can kind of see her as Mary Anne.
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[User Picture]From: glitterberrys
2012-07-11 07:08 pm (UTC)
I haven't seen the movie since I was a kid, so I only have vague recollections of the acting involved. That said, I really like most of the TV show cast. They're not GOOD ACTORS and most of them don't look the parts, but they get the job done.

Avriel Hillman is ridiculously perfect. There's no point in comparing.

Tricia Joe actually looks LESS like my mental image of Claudia than Jeni F Winslow - I think because she has that vacant expression down so well. Which may be bad acting, not good acting, but whatever it is, it works.

Bre Blair definitely has the Stacey look and 'tude down better. Jessica Prunell is adorable, and less grating as an actress than most of the girls on that show, but she's NOT NYC sophisticated.

I give Dawn to Alex Mack, but that's mostly because Melissa Chasse was SO awful and annoying.

MA is a toss-up for me. Meghan Lahey is SO poorly cast physically - she's tall, doughy-faced, medium-length light hair...but she has that timidity that works. RLC is the better fit for the part, but she's very...confident-looking. Maybe it's just that she's pretty. I don't know. I don't love either of them, but the reasons are so different I'm just not sure.

Jessi is Nicole Leach for me, even though she looks NOTHING like I pictured Jessi. She's just adorable and very appealing. Zelda Harris's only one-up is that she actually has Jessi's complexion. (Though Jessi does do random dance shit from time to time in book canon, I think, so it's not TOTALLY out of character, maybe?)

Mallory, I'd give it to the girl from the show, but I have a soft spot for Stacy Linn Ramsower, because she was a frequent guest star on one of my favorite tween Nick shows of the '90s, Hey Dude. Every time a random little girl was needed, she was brought in. Probably most memorably, she was the kid Melody saved from drowning that time a pro swimming scout happened to be vacationing at the Bar None.
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[User Picture]From: jessicarae729
2012-07-11 07:14 pm (UTC)
I pretty much agree with your assessments. I was 11 when the movie came out (aka, prime target), and I even remember afterward thinking it was kind of disappointing but wanting to like it so much that I tried to convince myself I loved it. I think it would have gone better if they had done the 80s approach instead of mid-90s as mentioned above, and I also think it would have been better if they'd done the plot more like that Ramona & Beezus movie that came out a couple years ago. The "overarching" plot is made up for the movie, but it's chock-full of bits that come out of the various books. I think they could have pulled plot points from a bunch of the books, and then used the camp storyline or something like that to pull it all together. Forget about the Claudia going to summer school, greenhouse, Mrs. Haberman, and Luca, and I could have done without the Kristy's dad business too.

As for the actors, I vote for all of your same ones except for Austin O'Brien/movie Logan because I thought he was nicer to look at. And by thought, I mean "still do". Otherwise, I definitely agree that movie Stacy is better and show Dawn is better. Larisa Oleynik would have been good for MA. I like the look of movie Claudia but do agree that she was vapid. HATE HATE HATE movie Kristy. If they weren't going to do anything decent with Mallory and Jessi in the movie, they should have just left them out and done a book pre-#11.
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[User Picture]From: aceattorneysho
2012-07-11 11:10 pm (UTC)
I haven't seen either yet, but I've read the lovely Ms. 3_foot_6's snarks on the show and roughly 3 of the movie so I soooorta know based on clips and screenshots. Even so I'd agree with you. The actors in the movie just look wrong from photos. That's how you know you've picked the wrong people. For example, once I saw that Larisa Oleynik was Dawn, I made a o_O face.

I plan to MST3K/Retsupurae the movie at least (once I can get my computer set up to do so) and I'm clearly going to also have to do it for the TV show to compare the two.
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[User Picture]From: sifukatara
2012-07-12 12:52 am (UTC)
I love Stacey in the TV Series better than the movie! First of all, the writer's got Stacey's sitting charge wrong. It's Charlotte, not Rosie! I prefer the TV Show version of Stacey because she is sweet and more like a thirteen-year-old should be. I like to think that book Stacey had a combo of both nice and sophisticated. I also love her bond with Charlotte in the series. It matches the books perfectly! The movie version just seemed to old for me. I have to say I prefer the TV Series to the movie any time.
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[User Picture]From: kaldary
2012-07-12 08:38 pm (UTC)
I choose movie Claudia and Jessi for an odd reason. Even though she didn't fit Claud well but I appreciated that she looked Asian. TV show Claudia looked like white washing. Same with Jessi. I liked that they did cast a very dark girl to play her instead of the old "We need to add a black person, but let's cast the one with the lightest skin tone!" I wouldn't care so much if this wasn't so common in media.
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[User Picture]From: xand_so_it_isx
2012-07-13 03:31 am (UTC)
I dislike movie Jessi cuz she looks about 8 and I just can't get over that, but I do agree the show should have had a darker Jessi considering what a huge deal it was her being black.

Claudia looks Asian to me. I mean she doesn't look Japanese, but the actress who plays her is probably half Asian, she kind of looks Filippino to me. But I agree they should have gone with someone who looks Japanese.
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[User Picture]From: lippian
2012-07-13 09:57 pm (UTC)
You forgot Karen! TV series!Karen is spot-on in Claudia and the Missing Pla-doh, both in looks and personality... but in the ten-second clip where Karen appears in the movie, she doesn't even have hated glasses. She is a brat, though.
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[User Picture]From: awishfuldreamer
2012-07-15 02:39 am (UTC)
I decided to only do club members, but I promise Karen did cross my mind! ^_^ The TV version is great because you really feel the same desire to smack her like when reading the books. Doesn't she only get like one line in the movie? That's the way it should be but the movie still sucks. Hmmmm...
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[User Picture]From: refuse2shine
2012-07-17 12:41 am (UTC)
I got into these books around 1998 (I was 6 at the time) so I didn't see the movie til a lot longer after it came out, but I still remember the first time seeing it and not liking it at all because the characters didn't seem right. The only parts I really truly enjoyed were the Stacey in New York parts because she was the one I thought they got spot on. Mallory was good too but she didn't show up nearly as much as I thought she should've.

I've never seen the show so I can't say too much about it but Avriel Hillman just looks so much like I thought Kristy should it's unreal.
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