This has bothered me for a long time (decades), so it’s about time I blogged it out. First, SPOILER ALERT! This has to do with a detail near the end of the 1987 film Dirty Dancing starring Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey. If you don’t know how that movie ends and don’t want to know you should stop reading now both for spoilers and because the rest of this probably won’t make any sense to you anyway.
As for the rest of of you, remember that part of the movie when Patrick Swayze sweeps in and says “Nobody puts Baby in the corner” to Jennifer Grey who at the time is sitting in a corner? Of course, you do. It’s perhaps the most famous line from Dirty Dancing. If you don’t remember this line I think you need to review the spoiler alert above.
In the context of the film, “Nobody puts Baby in the corner” is supposed to be super romantic or heroic or something, but it doesn’t make any sense. There is absolutely nothing wrong with Baby being the corner.
In case you need a refresher for Baby’s location and Johnny’s reaction to it:
I don’t see anything wrong with Baby being in the corner. She actually has the best seat at the table. Here is why:
- She is facing the stage. Her mom and dad have to turn their heads or their chairs to see the show. Baby has a straight on view.
- The pillar provides a leaning option to off set the discomfort of uncomfortable folding chairs.
- No one can sneak up behind her. Any good mob boss can explain to you how important this is.
Okay, Johnny is right that nobody should “put” Baby in the corner, but he wasn’t there when seating arrangements were made. Maybe she chose that seat for herself. I would have (see above for reasons).
So, that’s why, although it is many people’s favorite, “Nobody puts Baby in the corner” is my least favorite line from Dirty Dancing.
For the record, my favorite line from Dirty Dancing is “I carried a watermelon.”
Despite my alternate opinion about the pros and cons of sitting in a corner, Dirty Dancing is still one of my favorite 80s dance films. I rank it lower than Flashdance but above Footloose.
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