I Was Wrong About Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)

Reconsidering Stacy, Dimone, and Mr. Hand

Grace Ombry
Late to the Party
Published in
7 min readSep 11, 2023

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Mr. Hand (Ray Walston) confronts Jeff Spicoli (Sean Penn) over a pizza delivery. Screenshot by author. ©Universal Pictures

When I was a senior in high school, Cameron Crowe’s Fast Times at Ridgemont High captured the zeitgeist of mall culture, fast food jobs, burnouts, and everything from the waxing of Cheap Trick to the waning of Blue Öyster Cult. I hadn’t watched it for a few decades so when I came across it recently on…

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Grace Ombry
Late to the Party

Pop culture maven about town, author of the novels Smokin' & Cryin' and State of Love & Trust. Here to get ignored by a much wider audience.