Ah, romantic comedies. Their inevitable happy endings may be predictable, but the cinematic road to love is often quite imaginative. Take this week's big release, 'Life As We Know It', for example. The premise is that a couple dies, and instead of leaving their baby with grandparents or another relative with child-rearing experience, they leave her with two attractive young singles who hate each other, played by Katherine Heigl and Josh Duhamel.
We all know where this is headed. Heigl and Duhamel will ultimately act out the classic "Slap Slap Kiss" scenario (as has been so succinctly described by the folks at TVTropes.org). You know what I'm talking about. They can't stand each other, and then – boom! All of a sudden they're in love and can't live without each other. I'm sure Duhamel's fun-loving, beer-swilling character will lose his penchant for fun and magically morph into a boring house-trained drone. He will realize that Heigl's uptight character represents everything he should aspire to be, and will probably ditch all of his friends in favor of quiet nights cuddling on the couch.
She, on the other hand, will probably not change. Since romantic comedies primarily target women, the premise usually hinges on the fact that the female lead is perfect and does not require any major life changes. It's those unruly men who have so much "potential" who need to change. "Potential," of course, meaning decent-looking with the ability to secure a high-paying job.
'Life As We Know It' may be the most recent example of the "Slap Slap Kiss" formula, but it certainly isn't alone. Here's a round-up of five other conspicuous offenders.