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The Messed-Up Part Of Grease That Fans Are Happy To Ignore

Several films dominated the box office in 1978, including "National Lampoon's Animal House" and "Close Encounters of the Third Kind." However, one movie musical out-performed them all, grossing nearly $160 million worldwide (via Box Office Mojo) and going on to become a beloved classic that's still celebrated to this day.

Audiences fell in love with "Grease," directed by Randal Kleiser and based on the stage show by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey. With its unforgettable soundtrack, energetic dance numbers and teenage romance between Danny Zuko (John Travolta) and Sandy Olsson (Olivia Newton-John), there are many reasons why "Grease" continues to be a pop culture staple. In fact, the prequel series "Grease: Rise of the Pink Ladies" is set to drop on Paramount+ on April 6, which takes place four years before the events of "Grease" and follows four students who ignite a moral panic in Rydell High (via EW).

But over the years, many "Grease" viewers have pointed out some concerning aspects of the film. For example, when Coach Calhoun (Sid Caesar) explains the rules of the dance competition, he tells the students that all couples must be boys paired with girls. This has led some to call "Grease" homophobic. And who could forget host Vince Fontaine (Edd Byrnes) creepily hitting on teen Marty Maraschino (Dinah Manoff)? There's also a severe lack of representation, which has led some to call the film racist. According to The Today Show, there's been a demand for "Grease" to be completely banned.

Beyond these concerns, negative chatter has surfaced about the main component of "Grease," the dynamic between Danny and Sandy. At a glimpse, it's quite an adorable story as two opposites defy the odds and end up together. Yet upon closer inspection, everyone's favorite T-Bird isn't all he's cracked up to be.

Sandy has to make sacrifices to be with Danny in Grease

Despite enjoying a blissful summer with Sandy, once back at Rydell High, Danny is only concerned with image and maintaining a cool, tough guy front with his buddies. Though these two ultimately have a happy ending, "Grease" audiences feel it comes after much sacrifice on Sandy's part. As such, there are some fans who feel that Sandy deserved much better than the boy she ended up falling in love with.

She's forced to deal with Danny's hot and cold attitude toward her, in addition to some downright hurtful acts. A prime example is when he dances with ex-flame Cha Cha (Annette Charles) in front of Sandy. She's left in tears because of Danny numerous times, but in the end, changes her entire personality and appearance for him (all he did was put on a letterman sweater).

On Reddit, u/JoshProIsBestInLife said, "...no woman should change to suit their man or vice versa. You should have the strength of character to be yourself and your husband/boyfriend/whatever has to accept that or move on."

Still, many are willing to overlook this and appreciate "Grease" for what it's meant to be — a simple, feel-good flick. U/PurpleOwl85 said, "Yes, it has outdated and controversial storylines but the music, dancing, humor and weirdness is absolutely wonderful."

Even the late Olivia Newton-John didn't see what all the fuss was about. In fact, she described the social media hate toward "Grease" as "silly" and encouraged fans to relax. She told the "A Life of Greatness" podcast, "I think everyone's taking everything so seriously. I think we need to relax a little bit and just enjoy things for what they are. And I didn't see it like that at all, I think it's just a fun movie that entertains people. That's all."