Twenty years after it first hit cinemas, 10 Things I Hate About You is still as quotable as ever. No surprise, a lot of the now classic ‘90s teen movie’s best lines come from Kat Stratford, who helped so many young women enter the new millennium armed with a feminist attitude and a collection of riot grrrl CDs. Not to mention, she eternally provided fans with witty repartee for any run-ins with the Joey “Eat Me” Donners of the world.
Fans can thank 10 Things writers Kirsten “Kiwi” Smith and Karen McCullah Lutz, who would go on to pen other gems like Legally Blonde, She’s The Man, and Ella Enchanted, for all of that. The two women turned Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew into a timeless high school rom-com filled with two very different sisters, ill-advised betting, and Letters To Cleo. Maybe best of all, it introduced the world to Heath Ledger as the “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” singing heartthrob Patrick Verona, who gets a few memorable lines of his own.
On the 20th anniversary of 10 Things I Hate About You, it’s worth taking a look at some of the best quotes from the film. These are the ones that continue to stand the test of time. Who knows, some of these lines may still come in handy twenty years from now.
1. “Romantic? Hemingway? He was an abusive, alcoholic misogynist who squandered half of his life hanging around Picasso trying to nail his leftovers.”
Thanks to Kat Stratford, you will always have the perfect retort to anyone who insists you read The Sun Also Rises.
2. “You know, there’s a difference between like and love. I like my Skechers but I love my Prada backpack.”
Anyone who’s owned a Prada backpack, especially a mini one, understands exactly what Bianca’s saying here. Hopefully one day, Chastity (Gabrielle Union) will understand, too.
3. “Who knocked up your sister?”
Showing up right on time – 9:30 pm, of course – results in Patrick catching a glimpse of Bianca wearing *the* belly. At least her dad only made her wear it around the living room, right?
4. “I know you can be underwhelmed, and you can be overwhelmed, but can you ever just be, like, whelmed?”
Chastity asked this very important question and luckily, Bianca had an answer: “I think you can in Europe.”
5. “Ooh, see that, there. Who needs affection when I have blind hatred?”
Kat might have been too drunk and discombobulated to realise it, but Patrick’s flirty comeback to her insistence that he could never find a girl who actually liked him is very impressive.
6. “Shit, Bianca, I'm shooting a nose spray ad tomorrow!”
It’s what Joey (Andrew Keegan) utters right after Bianca punches him in the face at the prom. Let’s assume he didn’t get a callback.
7. “I guess, in this society, being male and an asshole makes you worthy of our time.”
Evergreen quote, courtesy of Kat Stratford.
8. “The last party I went to was at Chuck E Cheese. You want to talk about some fun? That’s a good time!”
Getting ready for Bogey Lowenstein’s party, Michael (David Krumholtz) reveals that he particularly likes to go where a kid can be a kid.
9. “Damn, I was going for thoughtful.”
Joey Donner really could have used a thesaurus. This one comes when Bianca calls his photo "pensive."
10. “She’s meeting some bikers, big ones, full of sperm.”
Kat sure knew how to soothe her dad’s nerves, huh?
11. “Am I that transparent? I want you. I need you. Oh baby, oh baby.”
Sweating like a pig or not, Kat totally drags Patrick. We can’t help but stan a sarcastic queen.
12. “Oh goodie, something new and different for us!”
Let’s just say Mandela (Susan May Pratt) wasn’t surprised (or delighted) to hear her bestie Kat wasn’t interested in attending school sanctioned functions, like say, the prom.
13. “My mission in life, but obviously, I struck your fancy so you see it worked, the world makes sense again.”
Kat’s comeback to Patrick feeling himself outside the record store is just dripping with sarcasm.
14. “Do you really wanna get all dressed up, so some Drakkar Noir-wearing dexter with a boner can feel you up while you're forced to listen to a band that, by definition, blows?”
Tell us how you really feel about the prom, Kat.
15. “But mostly I hate the way I don't hate you. Not even close, not even a little bit, not even at all.”
Kat’s poem is *chef’s kiss* but it’s the final stanza that will have you bawling your eyes out. Don’t worry, that was apparently everyone’s reaction on set after Julia Stiles delivered these iconic lines.