Hairstyles Of The Damned Analysis

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Hairstyles of the Damned by Joe Meno is a story about a boy named Brian and it takes the reader through one of the most confusing and stressful times in a person’s life, the teenage years. Brian is navigating his way through the punk scene while dealing with drama, conformity, love, friendship, and family. Gretchen’s car and Mike’s basement develop the theme of Brian trying to find his identity and place in the world by being places of introspection, places where important moments happened, and places that give him the freedom he wants. Despite Gretchen’s car being a piece of junk, it was a safe place for Brian to be introspective. It was in the car that he discovered he loved Gretchen, “We were in her crappy car and singing, and at the end of the song “White Riot,” the one by the Clash, I realized by the way I was watching her mouth pucker and smile and her eyes blink and wink, we were way more than friends, at least to me,” (Meno 3). Brian is very attentive to detail, especially those that have to do with Gretchen’s mannerisms and appearance. Gretchen is labeled as a fat angry punk by those at her school and other teenagers in the community but when in her car, Brian describes her as a dream girl, “…I noticed she didn’t even wear lipstick…show more content…
In the car, Gretchen was able to show a more vulnerable side of her to Brian. She was no longer the tough girl, but a normal teenage girl with feelings other than anger. She also showed vulnerability in front of Brian in the car when she caught Tony with Erica Lane and cried to him about boys being idiots. She took the photo of her mother with her on a drive and Brian followed along silently supporting his friend through her way of coping with her mother’s death. Gretchen addressed the photograph as if her mother was still alive, she said, “You too, mom,” (Meno 86), after telling Brian to stay in the car when she went to rearrange the garden gnomes on Stacy’s front
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