Yes, I am of the Molly Ringwald generation. And really, for those of you who make fun of the '80s, I thumb my nose at you: You of the Dick Clark or the "N Sync" generations have nothing on Molly Ringwald.
Like Molly Ringwald's many teen characters, I was not completely of one group or another. I was part geek, part athlete; part punk and part preppy. But winding throughout all the angst and teenage confusion were deep and durable friendships. My friends and I were our own pack of misfit eclectic fringe characters. We found our fashion in thrift stores that sold by the pound, and we learned of the world exploring the city by train and the wilderness by foot. Watching the old Brat Pack movies brings back that feeling of certainty I had in my friends. Boys, I wasn't sure about, but my friends were forever.
—Pearl Stark, station manager, KPOV
When I first heard Molly Ringwald was touring and available to sing at the Tower Theatre, I immediately said, "Book her!" She's an iconic part of movie history. She's affected the lives of countless teenagers since 1984—then young and now older. But what drew me to the "2013 Molly" were the ways she's grown into her status as a role model. She stars in ABC Family's "The Secret Life of the American Teenager" not as a has-been teen idol, but rather as a gay, single mother of a young adult. She celebrated her 40th birthday five years ago by writing the bestseller "Getting the Pretty Back," with heartfelt advice. Sure, I remember Molly as John Hughes' go-to angst actress. Yet her insights and talent on camera, in print and behind a microphone still resonate. Ask my college-bound niece who's her favorite actress? That would be the "Molly" from 1984 and the "Molly" in 2013.
—Ray Solley, executive director, Tower Theatre Foundation
Pretty in Pink has always struck a chord with me. Molly's movies and the characters she played always seemed to creep into my projects in college. For a digital art class I recreated a series of famous scenes, where I played Molly's character, in photographs. Standing with Blaine in front of his car when he asks her to prom in PIP and sitting on the table with the birthday cake between us like in Sixteen Candles were two of the scenes. While I may not have one specific favorite Molly moment, I love her Brat Pack movies, even though Pretty in Pink came out the year I was born.
—Anne Pick, former Source calendar editor and movie reviewer
I named my daughter after her. Molly Ringwald was one those normal-looking girls amongst the GORGEOUS girls of the '80s, yet she was more beautiful than all of them. With Molly Ringwald, it was SO MUCH MORE than her looks. All of us young women could relate to her and the real characters she played in all of her movies. The somewhat nerdy girl landing SUPER HOT Jake in Sixteen Candles? How many of us went to bed every night dreaming that if it happened to her, it could happen to us?
(Ed. And with the risk of encouraging a stalker ...)
I was 10 when Sixteen Candles came out and was just reaching the point that girls were no longer "icky." I wouldn't say I had a full-blown crush...probably because I had no idea what that meant. The Breakfast Club followed a year later and it was the first time I saw a group of "kids" willing to get in trouble for who they were. Now, when Pretty in Pink came out, I was old enough to know what a crush was and, yes, Molly was in that category! She would have to be my first "movie star" crush.