As If: The Slang Of Iconic Female Characters

Screen Slang Much?

You have to admit, young women and adolescent girls have long been a driving force in shaping our everyday language. Television and movies play a huge role in creating some our most colorful expressions. Can you guess which TV shows or films popularized or introduced the following slang words in the past few decades?


“What’s the sitch?” was asked in the first ever episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer in 1997. The show ended in 2003, crushing the heart of many a fan but ensuring its mythical status by dying a fairly early death. The show’s fan base grew in the years following its demise, and the clever lexicon of the show spurred at least one book (Slayer Slang by Michael Adams) alongside endless essays and articles.

"As if"

“He said my debates were unresearched, unstructured, and unconvincing. AS IF!” the movie’s heroine Cher exclaims in 1995’s Clueless. Cher (Alicia Silverstone) is a soul-searching, popular and wealthy high schooler, who charmed audiences due in no small part to the show’s writers empowering her with witty and pointed language.

“That’s so Raven”

So, yes, the 2003 Disney Channel TV show was called That’s so Raven. And now, it seems, the very phrase, “That’s so Raven,” is used to express everything from delight to disgust, or things that are stereotypically found in black culture. It also might be used as a comment on one coming out (of the proverbial closet) via Twitter, which is what Raven-Symoné did in 2013.

“Female Backpack”

The reality TV show Jersey Shore might not have exactly popularized this one, but they coined it, and it’s hard to forget. It means, loosely, a woman who hovers or hangs around her man too much. And, in Jersey Shore’s world, you can bet that’s most likely due to trust issues.

“_______ much?”

The 1988 film Heathers took the word “much” and gave it a whole new function. Placed after an adjective, infinitive verb or noun phrase, it’s a sassy way of posing a pretty judgy question: “Jealous much?” and “Drool much?” Those girls.


Who started it? This one is a trick question. “Whatever” was coined back in the 1970s as a brush-off, but a certain aforementioned movie took it to a new level with a now famous hand gesture. Give up? “Clueless” gave us the gesture, a way of framing the word coming from the speaker’s mouth. The movie gave “whatever” new life, and the word is still popular today, though flavored with some irony.


Back in 2004, Regina George told Gretchen Weiners in Mean Girls to “stop trying to make ‘fetch’ happen” because “it’s not going to happen.” Short for fetching, it meant cool, lovely, totally a good thing…and some diehard fans of the word are still trying to make it happen. Ceasing and desisting is the only way. And it should happen, right? Oh, wait—see what we did there? We ruined it.

“Just not that into you”

A colorful rom-sex-com about attractive, single women in New York City, HBO’s Sex in the City spawned what’s arguably one of the sturdiest self-help tropes to come from television. When Carrie Bradshaw’s boyfriend Berger tells Miranda that her date “was just not that into you,” the phrase went out into the dating world and caught fire. Admitting he might not be that into you can be painful, but not as embarrassing as believing he didn’t call because he got hit by a bus. That’s painful.

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Word of the Day

Can you guess the definition?


[ sik-uh-fuhnt, -fant ]

Can you guess the definition?

Word of the day

[ sik-uh-fuhnt, -fant ]