Christmas movies produced by Hallmark, Lifetime, Netflix and more are known for taking actors from beloved teen movies and TV shows and sticking them in the suspended reality of a TV rom-com. The 2004 cult classic Mean Girls is one movie that's been well-represented this holiday season, and not just because multiple of its actors are leading their own movies. Lindsay Lohan referenced the iconic “Jingle Bell Rock” number in her Netflix Christmas movie Falling for Christmas, and now Jonathan Bennett made his own hilarious North Shore High callback on Hallmark’s The Holiday Sitter.
The rom-com stars Jonathan Bennett as Sam, who’s tasked with babysitting his niece and nephew, with the help of his godsend of a neighbor, Jason (George Krissa). After it was established that Jason’s dog has a fondness for playing fetch, one scene features Sam waking up to the dog licking his face. At this point, Sam utters a phrase made famous by Mean Girls 18 years ago:
It's a wonder the dog didn't start howling as soon as that line was uttered. I guess he never saw the movie. Tsk tsk.
The famous line from Mean Girls was actually said by Rachel McAdams’ Regina George, after Gretchen Wieners (played by fellow Hallmark regular Lacey Chabert) continued her attempts to make the slang term catch on. Jonathan Bennett’s callback was a pretty fun moment, especially for fans who have rewatched the Aaron Samuels portrayer in the classic teen movie (which is now available to stream with a Paramount+ subscription) too many times to count.
The reference also followed one from Lindsay Lohan, who played Cady Heron in Mean Girls, as she returned to acting in Netflix’s “better than expected” Falling for Christmas. Making reference to her dance number with The Plastics to “Jingle Bell Rock,” her character sings along to a few lines while in the car. It turns out, the inclusion of the song was apparently Lohan’s idea.
Lacey Chabert, fellow Mean Girls star and one of the actors who stayed with Hallmark when several others jumped ship to Great American Family, also led her own holiday movie, Haul Out the Holly. While she didn’t seem to include any Easter eggs to her iconic 2004 role, she did repeat one of Gretchen’s famous Mean Girls lines when posting a sneak peek of the Hallmark movie on social media. It counts.
It’s so much fun to watch actors from our favorite movies star in holiday rom-coms, and these little references are fun nods to the fans who are paying attention. The Holiday Sitter is the first Hallmark Christmas Movie to feature gay leads, and Jonathan Bennett has been open about how the network was supportive in its handling the LGBTQ+ storylines (a fact that seemed apparent when watching The Holiday Sitter).
The movie next airs on Hallmark Channel at 4 p.m. ET December 17, and plays several more times through the rest of the year. Meanwhile, Falling for Christmas can be streamed with a Netflix subscription, and you can see Lacey Chabert in Haul Out the Holly when it airs next on Hallmark at 2 p.m. ET December 21. You can also view the full slate of upcoming Hallmark movies, and check out all of the other holiday offerings with our 2022 Christmas movie schedule.
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Heidi Venable is a Content Producer for CinemaBlend, a mom of two and a hard-core '90s kid. She started freelancing for CinemaBlend in 2020 and officially came on board in 2021. Her job entails writing news stories and TV reactions from some of her favorite prime-time shows like Grey's Anatomy and The Bachelor. She graduated from Louisiana Tech University with a degree in Journalism and worked in the newspaper industry for almost two decades in multiple roles including Sports Editor, Page Designer and Online Editor. Unprovoked, will quote Friends in any situation. Thrives on New Orleans Saints football, The West Wing and taco trucks.