Lifetime Movies: Top 5 (of 10) 'Troubled Teen' Tales & Bonus Classics

Our honor roll of the network's peeks into adolescent hell:


it's a cheesy tv movie post ONTD, grab the popcorn


(trigger warning)


OP Note: 5 from source, rest added by me.

Pregnancy Pact (2010):

The Issues: Teen pregnancy; peer pressure
The Plot: The movie, ostensibly based on a sensationalized 2008 incident in which a group of high schoolers made a ''pact'' to get pregnant together, involves a journalist (Thora Birch) who returns to her alma mater to investigate why all these girls are getting knocked up in the first place. (The groan-worthy tagline: ''Not all teen pregnancies are unplanned.'') Lesson learned: Just because all your friends are getting pregnant doesn’t mean it’s a good idea. In fact, it’s a downright terrible one.
Lifetime-iest Line: Rose (Kelly Heyer): ''So this is what it feels like to be Jamie Lynn Spears.''


Odd Girl Out, 2005

The Issues: Bullying, cyber bullying, prescription drugs
The Plot: Here's something you may not know: Sometimes, middle schoolers — particularly girls — are mean to each other. And the Internet makes everything worse. Vanessa (Alexa Vega) starts out eighth grade hanging with the popular kids, but is slowly ostracized from their cruel clique. When the bullying becomes extreme — complete with a webpage dedicated solely to bashing her — Vanessa ODs on her mom's prescription drugs. Mean Girls ain't got nothing on Lifetime.
Lifetime-iest Line: Stacey (Leah Pipes): ''What? That is such a lie! You've known her what, five minutes? Vanessa and I are incredibly close.''
Emily (Shari Dyon Perry): ''Yeah, close enough to kill her.''


Girl, Positive, 2007

The Issues: AIDS; sex; intravenous drugs
The Plot: After a one-night stand at a ''Best Friends Forever'' party, high school senior Rachel (Andrea Bowen) discovers that the popular football player she slept with was a heroin addict — and HIV positive. Good thing a supportive, HIV-positive substitute teacher (Jennie Garth, because poor Kelly Taylor can't catch a break even outside of 90210) is around to support her in her time of need. Fun fact: The movie was originally called Consequences, obviously because Having Sex Just the One Time Might Literally Kill You seemed too unwieldy.
Lifetime-iest Line: Tagline from the trailer: ''Hooking up can take anybody down.''


She's Too Young, 2004

The Issues: Sex; STIs; peer pressure
The Plot: This movie has everything: Drinking, drugs, peer pressure, sex-driven media influences, and a high school syphilis outbreak. It's a mom's focus group of everything they're afraid might happen to their beloved 14-year-olds. Marcia Gay Harden stars as the main teen's concerned mom. Come for over-the-top party scenes, stay for even more over-the-top heart-to-hearts.
Lifetime-iest Line: School Nurse (Lauren Glave): ''Do these boys have any feelings for you?''
Becca (Megan Park): ''For about a minute.''
School Nurse: ''But you keep doing it anyway?''
Becca: ''Yeah. And I'm the most popular girl in ninth grade.''
I felt bad for Marcia doing this movie so soon after her Oscar.



Cyber Seduction: His Secret Life, 2005

The Issues: Internet porn; sex addiction; energy drinks
The Plot: Justin Petersen (Jeremy Sumpter) was a good student, a gifted swimmer, and an all-around stand-up kid — until an older, more sexually experienced classmate introduced him to the sordid world of online pornography. Now Justin's staying up all night, guzzling Red Bull, visiting sites like ''A Lust for Bust,'' and...simply looking at dirty pictures, because this is basic cable and he can't really be shown doing anything else. Can his devoted parents and his churchgoing girlfriend help Justin get his life back?
Lifetime-iest Line: Justin's concerned dad (John Robinson): ''He better have an explanation.''
Justin's concerned mom (Kelly Lynch): ''Like what? 'Virgin Vaginas' are a new band?''
This one was too much even by Lifetime standards.

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This is a pretty good modern list of the best troubled teen movies, but as a 90s kid I couldn't help but think of some of the classics from that era. Here are some of my other favorite tv movies, ONTD what are yours?


Fifteen and Pregnant

Based on a true story, 15 year old Tina Spangler discovers she is pregnant. Her choices are abortion, adoption, or a lonely, exhausting life as a single parent. Abandoned by her boyfriend, she turns to her mother. Tina discovers although it has torn her world apart, her pregnancy could re-unite her shattered family and help her find her true purpose in life.
The iconic original. Kirsten did an interview a few years ago saying that this is the movie women mention most when they come up to her in public.




Mother, May I Sleep With Danger

Laurel has the boyfriend of her dreams, Kevin. He can and will do anything for her. He is totally devoted to her but the downside is that he never leave her alone. When she tries to get some distance he responds with aggressiveness. It finally dawns on Laurel that he is not good for her. Laurel's mother Jessica has already started to suspect that something is wrong with his background.
I was never a huge fan of Tori's movies but considering how prolific she was it didn't feel right not to include her here. It was either this or Co-Ed Call Girl, lol.



She Cried No aka Freshman Fall

A college freshman is date-raped at her brother's frat party by a fraternity member.
DJ Tanner didn't work much after Full House so it was always nice when she popped up in TV movies.


A Secret Between Friends aka When Friendship Kills

Lexi Archer is a teenager who, after the divorce of her parents, moves with her mother Kathryn and younger sister Jill from Chicago to Seattle. At her new school, she befriends Jennifer Harnsberger, a popular straight A student whom she meets during volleyball tryouts. After her volleyball coach suggests that Lexi should lose a few pounds in order to enhance her athletic performance, she starts to look for ways to diet. When Jennifer admits to being bulimic, they decide to diet and work out together.
I remember them playing this one A LOT.



She Fought Alone

A young high school student is raped by a classmate. However, when word of the crime gets out, instead of condemning the rapist--a member of the school's championship football team--the other students jeer at and humiliate her, call her a "slut", accuse her of instigating the rape and pressure her to keep her mouth shut so the football team will still be able to play.
This is another one that was on constant repeat on cable.

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