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Now or Then – Youth in Revolt or Superbad?

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Now: Youth in Revolt (2010)Then: Superbad (2007)

With the release of Youth in Revolt, Michael Cera’s domination of the Ironic Teen Comedy genre is probably complete. Sure, Miguel Arteta’s film version of C.D. Payne’s cult novel, about a young Oakland oddball who goes through the tortures of the damned to prove his worth to the girl he loves, is artier and and a lot more stylized, but we figured it might be telling to put it up against the last great Michael Cera Ironic Teen Comedy, the wondrous, amazing and legendary Superbad. Herewith, our comparison.

Horndog Teens and the Girls Who (Might) Love Them

Youth in Revolt: Nick Twisp (Michael Cera) is a desperate, geeky virgin who is amazed to discover kindred spirit Sheeni (Portia Doubleday), a beautiful, headstrong young woman who like him is also into movies, poetry, and the Europeans. But does she like him in that way? Unclear.

Superbad: Sensitive Evan (Michael Cera) and irreverent wise-ass Seth (Jonah Hill) are two desperate best friends and — wait for it — virgins with crushes on, respectively, sensitive Becca (Martha MacIsaac) and irreverent wise-ass Jules (Emma Stone). But do the girls like them in that way? Unclear.

A Teenager’s Filthy Mind Is a Good Place to Start

Youth in Revolt: The movie opens to the sounds of Nick masturbating beneath the sheets of his bed.

Superbad: The movie opens with Seth telling Evan which porn site offers the most value for his subscription dollars.

Crafting New Identities

Youth in Revolt: Dismayed at his inability to seduce headstrong and rebellious Sheeni, Nick creates an alter-ego for himself — a brash, smoking, mustachioed French bad boy named Francois Dillinger.

Superbad: In an attempt to offset his own intense uncoolness, Evan and Seth’s nerdy third wheel Fogel (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) gives himself the name McLovin’ on his fake ID.

Bad Cops!

Youth in Revolt: Nick’s mother falls for Police Officer Lance Wescott (Ray Liotta), an authoritarian who mercilessly torments Nick.

Superbad: After he’s assaulted when purchasing alcohol with his fake ID, McLovin’ meets police officers Michaels (Seth Rogen) and Slater (Bill Hader), who then proceed to steal beers and get drunk with him.

Every Girl Loves an Outlaw

Youth in Revolt: In an effort to convince Sheeni he’s also a rebel, Nick sets a good chunk of Oakland on fire and goes on the run. Sheeni is, needless to say, impressed.

Superbad: After the cops accidentally interrupt McLovin’ with a girl, they pretend to haul him away in handcuffs in full view of a high school party, giving him instant badass cred.

Don’t forget to vote in the Now or Then poll or leave your thoughts in the comments below!

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