Lydia, Updated for Present Day
1988—it was a long time ago.
You can’t really play too much of “a recycled teenager” without some stylistic changes.
Sure, there’s the question if too great a number of the MTV generation “ever grew up” or if we live in an extended post-adolescence with tiny jobs, an abundant service economy, and definitely TIME TO PARTY.
Many of us keep listening to the same music we did back in high school. . . . . . but there’s a question if we’d still wear the exact articles of clothing.
Many 40 year-old’s couldn’t well fit into the same Metallica t-shirt or at least wouldn’t wear it well. And it’s not if most Metallica fans turned into investment bankers.
I can’t really think of Winona Ryder as Lydia Deetz ever “selling-out”, really. But would she still wear the same shapeless black rags and spiky head-piece?
Not likely—or it would just look weird 30 years on.
But an artistic, dark soul would still wear the sort of dark, punk-rock accoutrements. I’m thinking a black sun hat, t-shirt, and jeans like the photo below—incidentally a slice of the local population around here in our very own St. Louis.
So how do you weigh the reality of “working”, or holding-down a job?
There’s one answer to that—THE “GIG” ECONOMY.
Front whatever kind of bullshit you want, but there’s a niche for any kind of service. And that means more than working at “Build-a-Bear” though it’s a job Lydia might try out for like, A DAY before getting fired.
If you remember, she makes her way around as a local personality working on DIY t.v., maybe a bit of radio at the local community stations. When she’s not doing that, or maybe running a YouTube channel she makes extra money by giving live tarot readings via web-cam with an air of intrigue and langouring mystery.
Stretch that job out while living with a couple of house-mates and possessing a liberal arts degree, maybe you can “fake it” until “you make it”.
Cyber-space calls, meat-space is tacky. But tours of the strange & unusual can pass as a vocation, if you’re creative and “a little loopy”.
So it is among the hard feld-spar and open lots, where skaters flip tricks and the depthless blue sky hangs above as old media is recycled into newer, strange organic forms. Personalities weave in and out of her languid, sarcastic day and she never loses her dramatic air, bobbing in and of the screen like an apparition in a Bram Stoker novel.
Trust me—many can get away with this well into middle-age or later—as where do you go when there’s no role models or hero’s—only television sound-bytes and the even more evanescent online-hype?
And who could rightfully succeed in such a media environment? What single point of hard, diamond-like concentration does it get to push a personal brand, a line of consumer products?
Let the freak show begin. . . . . she’s just the ticket-taker.
As for Beetlejuice? The star of the story—and you’ll know “IT’S SHOW-TIME”.
Lydia remains the well-grounded “voice of reason” and keeps this film anchored. Her most welcome-return will certainly be anticipated, or else the sequel “was never meant to be”.
And by plucking the petals off a black-rose and creamy white fingers with black nail-polish, she’ll wish you luck.