Always the Bridesmaid, Never the Bride

by Michelle C.

Wedding season is starting. A great way to learn the dos and don’ts of wedding etiquette is to watch the horrific, but hilarious, outcomes of the wedding gone wrong in movies. Some of my favorite tropes in the wedding genre are the bride and switch, childhood marriage promise, crazy in-laws, and the bridesmaid’s turn at love.

In the bride and switch, the bride is a master manipulator and the groom is being deceived about who she really is. But not to worry, there is usually a girl in the background who is just waiting to show the groom what true love really means.

Try: Decoy Bride, The Wedding Planner, The Parent Trap, Made of Honor

In the childhood marriage promise, two friends promise to get married when they are older. Fast forward a dozen or so years and the friends may have lost touch or been divided by distance. All we need are these two to get back together for the promise to be fulfilled.

Try: Sweet Home Alabama, My Best Friend’s Wedding, 13 Going on 30

In the crazy in-laws trope, the couple is the least of our worries. The father-in-law or the dreaded mother-in-law are the focus of the story. How will they cope with their little girl or boy getting married. You can expect lots of shenanigans and plenty of sabotage.

Try: Father of the Bride, Meet the Fockers, Monster-in-Law

In the bridesmaid’s turn at love, the old adage “always the bridesmaid, never the bride” seems true. Our heroine is usually wonderful in every way, but has been unable to find Mr. Right. She might even have given up on finding love. Maybe there’s someone out there that will ensure the next dress she wears at a wedding will be white?

Try: When in Rome, 27 Dresses, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, Bridesmaids

What are some of your favorite wedding movie tropes?

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One response to “Always the Bridesmaid, Never the Bride”

  1. Julie says:

    Ooooh, I watched “Father of the Bride” a bazillion times in high school. One of my favorite scenes is when Steve Martin starts taking apart hot dog bun packages at the grocery store, railing against the number of buns per pack versus how many hot dogs he gets per pack. Its full of tropes, but done well, blending humor and sentiment and zaniness. And I love “Sweet Home Alabama”! The whole “I’ve gone to the big city and am now super successful and sophisticated”, but have come home to my small town and have conflicting emotions about it all, is a romance trope I never seem to tire of (as long as its fun and makes the well-worn path feel fresh).

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