Mary Anne's Makeover (RS#60)

Original Publication Date: 1993

Ghostwriter? Yes, Peter Lerangis


This book was always one of my favorites. Mary Anne sees a haircut in a fashion magazine and is inspired. She and Richard have a father-daughter day at the mall, where she gets a new, short haircut, new makeup, and a few new clothes (she has to pay for part). She has a wonderful time with her dad, but when she gets home, Dawn is stunned. Not just surprised then happy, like Sharon, but condescending. Dawn spills the beans to the rest of the BSC, including Logan. When Logan sees Mary Anne's new look, he agrees with her that it's great. Most kids at SMS seem to like the new look and Mary Anne gets loads of compliments. Rumors even start that high school boys are asking her out.

But the rest of the BSC act like they're either upset with Mary Anne for keeping it a secret or like they're trying to commiserate that "it's not so bad" or "it'll grow back." (Since Dawn called them before, I'm guessing she said something about Mary Anne's "awful" haircut so the other girls thought Mary Anne needed sympathy.) Mary Anne's so sick of the cold shoulder that she stops attending meetings (the horror!). Eventually, she decides to take matters into her own hands and explain that she's happy with her new look and she wasn't trying to offend anyone by keeping it secret and things are okay again. Dawn still has the gall to say that it hurt her to see how close Mary Anne was with her dad, but she'll just have to get over the fact that Mary Anne has a good relationship with her ONE LIVING PARENT.

There's a somewhat boring subplot about Carolyn Arnold building a time machine that she almost thinks will really work. Aside from Back to the Future references it's boring.

Established or continued in this book:

The Girls (and Logan):

Claudia candy: tortilla chips in the closet, pretzels under her bed, Goobers, Milk Duds

Foul: Mary Anne complains that she's not allowed to have pierced ears. Since the incident at summer camp during which she nearly had her ears pierced by amateurs, Mary Anne hasn't wanted them pierced. Why should it matter if she's allowed? (Also, as a parent, how would you enforce that rule when your stepdaughter with whom you live has two piercings in each ear? It would be difficult, wouldn't it?)

Mary Anne goes to a salon at the Washington Mall which she knows Stacey likes. Sure enough, in the seventh Super Special, Stacey and her mom got stranded by the blizzard because Stacey had had her hair done at that mall.

Logan says that if he could go back in time to whenever he wanted, he'd go to the day he first met Mary Anne, which, as we'll see later, is his most vivid memory.

Their Families:

This person (http://bsc-snark.livejournal.com/232174.html#cutid1) has a great theory about why Mary Anne's dad had her keep her hair in braids: when down, she looked more like her mother. Since he mentions that in Mary Anne's first book, it's reasonable that he might have thought it would be too painful.

The book implies that Mary Anne was dressing in little girl clothes and braids until Richard and Sharon married.

Richard Spier likes jazz.

Mary Anne references an abysmal haircut that Karen Brewer got at a local salon, which is recounted in one of the few Little Sisters I read (Karen's Haircut).

The Club:

Foul: Mary Anne takes credit for talking to the Arnolds about the twins' desire to be separate people. I thought that book was Mallory and the Trouble with Twins...

Chapter 9 opens on a Thursday at school, but after school the same day Mary Anne goes to a BSC meeting.


Student: Hannah Toce (8th)


I have never understood the deal with parents not allowing their daughters to cut their hair. I knew a few girls in elementary, middle, and high school with very long hair who weren't allowed to have it cut. One for religious reasons, which is different, but the others just because their parents said no. I'm going to put it in writing now: as long as her haircut isn't wild (think shaved head) or expensive, my daughter and any daughters who follow can have whatever length haircuts.

It's too bad that there's no mention of donating cut hair to something like Locks of Love. Then again, I can't find out how long that organization or others like it have been around; maybe they didn't exist in 1993.

Page 89: "It sounded as if [Sabrina Bouvier] had been going to the [SHS Winter Dance] since she was a toddler." Well, since Sabrina Bouvier was a contestant in a beauty pageant in Little Miss Stoneybrook...and Dawn, I suppose it's possible.

The numbers:

Starting 8th grade: 4

Halloweens in 8th grade: 2 (plus one in seventh)

Valentine's Days in 8th grade: 2

Summers after 8th grade: 3

BSC Fights: 8

SMS Staff and Faculty: 32

Students (other than the BSC): 96; 63 8th graders, 2 7th grader, 18 6th graders, 12 unspecified

Clients: 29

Types of candy in Claudia’s room: 65 (bonbons, bubble gum, Butterfingers, butterscotch candy, candy hearts, Cheese Doodles, Cheetos, a chocolate bar, chocolate-covered cherries, chocolate marshmallow cookies, Chunky bar, cookies, Cracker Jacks, crackers (unspecified and whole wheat), cupcakes, dark-chocolate caramels, Devil Dogs, Ding-Dongs, Doritos, Fig Newtons, Fritos, fruit pie, Goobers, gumdrops, Gummi Bears (regular and sweet-n-sour), Heath bars, Hershey's kisses, Ho Hos, jawbreakers, jellybeans, Kit-Kats, licorice, licorice whips, Lifesavers, M&Ms (regular and peanut), Mallomars, malt balls, marshmallows, Mentos, Milk Duds, Milky Ways, mini candy bars, Necco wafers, Oreos (Double Stuf and chocolate-dipped), Payday bars, Planter's Peanut bar, popcorn, potato chips, pretzels, pretzel sticks, red hots, Ring Dings, root beer barrels, salt water taffy, Snickers, taco chips, Tootsie Roll Pops, Tootsie Rolls, tortilla chips, Triscuits, Twinkies, Yodels)

Crushes: Claudia-8 (Guy, Terry, Austin Bentley, Timothy Carmody, Arthur Feingold, Woody Jefferson, Trevor Sandbourne, Will Yamakawa), Dawn-5 (Travis, Lewis Bruno, Parker Harris, Price Irving, Richie Magnesi), Mary Anne-2 (Alex, Logan Bruno), Stacey-7 (Toby, Kelsey Bauman, Pete Black, Ross Brown, Pierre D'Amboise, Scott Foley, Sam Thomas), Kristy-1 (Bart Taylor), Mallory-1 (Ben Hobart), Jessi-3 (Daniel, Curtis Shaller, Quint Walter)


Laura said...

Foul: Mary Anne takes credit for talking to the Arnolds about the twins' desire to be separate people. I thought that book was Mallory and the Trouble with Twins...
It is but I believe MA is referring to the baby-sitting sub-plot in Mary Anne and the Great Romance where the twins get separate rooms.

How did Richard even find out about the ear-non-piercing incident at Camp Mohawk? (Do you think Mimi told him after Claudia told her but asked her not to tell MA's father?)

Richard could justify it as: when he made the rule about ear-piercing, he was MA's only parent, as was Sharon to Dawn (in terms of permission) when she let her get her two holes per ear.

Back to the Future, Whoo Hoo!

Hair: I've never understood rules about hair either. (Religious customs aside.) My parents have always said I could do whatever I wanted with my hair because it was MY hair and I had to wear it.

SJSiff said...

You're right that Mary Anne helped with separate rooms, but in this book she's specifically referring to how they were dressed alike.

I didn't mean to imply that Richard knows about the Camp Mohawk incident (sounds so scandalous!), just that Mary Anne decides to never pierce her ears then and sticks with that decision for most books.

You're right about how Richard could justify the rule. It just doesn't make much sense to me, but I have no direct experience with step families.

Thanks, editor! :)

Jessie said...

This one was my favorite BSC book when I was a child!
The clothes-haircut thing was very interesting, but I always thought that the rest of the story should have been more interesting. They have a fight and then they become friends again when they explain their feelings at the end. It's too much like so many other BSC books... I think if Logan would have disapproved Mary Anne's new look, the story would have been more interesting. I like it anyway :)

Unknown said...

1) LOOOOOOVE Richard Spier in this book. He is so supportive, and he's come such a long way with Mary Anne since book one. New clothes, make-up, a new (short!) hair cut. I'm so proud of him, and my heart just burst when I read how awesome he was.

2) On the other side of the coin, What the Hell, Sharon? Your daughter is being a rude little Beeotch to her step sister right in front of you and you're just sitting there!

3) Sabrina Bouvier has clearly managed to circumvent the Stonybrook Groundhog 8th Grade Time Warp! We must find her and torture her out of her secret so that we may than apply it to Dawn (and Karen), who desperately needs to grow the hell up.

SJSiff said...

Brilliant idea about how to fix Dawn and Karen!

Anonymous said...

All the references to Mary Anne's non-pierced ears used to bother me when I read these books. In "Mary Anne Saves The Day" (RS#4) it references her having earrings in -- just little studs. I don't have my books anymore, but I'm certain it was when she took her hair down to show her dad how good it could look when not in braids. That was one of the continuity errors that bugged me the most, strangely enough. I really wish I could check it and tell you the exact page number -- maybe you could take a look and see?

SJSiff said...

I just skimmed the whole book, and I didn't see it anywhere. However, my copy still has "Abigail" as her mother's name, not "Alma." Maybe other versions include the earrings? The closest thing is when Mary Anne wants to be able to wear nail polish and stockings and lipstick.