Part of the Valentine’s Day Blog Hop
“Everyone tells me if I survive
Sooner or later help will arrive
Everyone says the sun”s gonna shine
Sooner or later that”s a long time”
– From the song Sooner or Later by Rex Smith
*Dragnet voiceover* Sooner or Later began innocently as a YA novel by Bruce and Carole Hart. All was dandy until it was turned into a made-for-TV movie of the same name. On March 25, 1979, one girl’s view of love was forever altered.
I was still a child when it happened. Innocently I sat in my living room to watch a cute little love story of two teenagers. Well, I thought it was going to be a cute little love story. No! Instead it was a demonic tale that manipulated me, forever altering my universe!
In Sooner or Later a thirteen-year-old Jessie (played by a rather non-descript, and thus easy to identify with, Denise Miller) goes to the mall and gets a make-over, transforming her into a girl who looks sixteen. (Ah! Make-up! My obsession with the colorful goo begins!) Heavenly chimes of live music draw her outside to a free rock concert featuring a random local band. (I was already obsessed with rock and roll, so this only drew me in deeper.) However, the front man was no average singer! He was the tall, blonde, handsome, and rather manly, wannabe rock deity Michael Skye! (No one knew who Rex Smith was at the time, but we sure knew after!)
Jessie later winds up with Michael as her guitar teacher, and, through the magic of make-up, lands this super awesome musician boyfriend who would never give a thirteen-year-old the time of day. He sings to her, takes her out, and romances her. It’s perfect! That is, until he makes a typical seventeen-year-old guy move and she pushes him away while revealing her real age. Jessie is now discarded as jail-bait, breaking both her heart and mine! I shed every stupid tear with her while she eats an entire Sara Lee chocolate cake. (Now we have break-up eating! Evil, I tell you!)
SOMEHOW, Jessie manages to get Michael back, and it’s not by caving and sleeping with him. She tears at his heartstrings and makes him vulnerable. Now he is totally willing to take it slow and respect her. (Yep! A vulnerable, respectful, long-haired rocker! I was DOOMED!!!)
Unfair! This movie made me obsessed with make-up, more obsessed with long-haired musicians, and brought me to the belief that no matter how old I am I can sweep a seventeen-year-old hunk off of his feet!
This is why Sooner or Later is one of my favorite, and most annoying, romances of all time.
Sidenote: The soundtrack included several hits. Two of the songs, Simply Jessie, and the epic, You Take My Breath Away, were played as bridal party entrance songs at my wedding.