Margaret Atwood's Happy Endings

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Margaret Atwood’s “Happy Ending’s” is all but what it seems. With a somewhat misleading title, Atwood’s intent is to convey that there is no happy ending and that “the endings are the same however you slice it” (Atwood 515). Presented within this story is the theme of how plots are hypothesized as a continuation of the story, “a what and a what and a what” (Atwood 515), but the important part is the stretch in-between. Although there are six different scenarios in this short story, they all have the same conclusion: John and Mary die. In “Happy Endings” Atwood argues that the main components of the plot are character underdevelopment, love vs. desire, and the looping back to Scenario A. In the six scenarios, Atwood created John and Mary to portray the main characters of her tales. Theses bland names are fitting for these dreary characters. Atwood seems to make no attempt at character development, leaving that to the reader’s imagination. Instead of developing in-depth character personalities, Atwood leaves them undeveloped and stereotyped. The only thing that we do know about them besides their names is that “the only authentic ending is the one provided here: John and Mary die. John and Mary die. John and Mary die” (Atwood 515). Since John and Mary were give such little background and information,…show more content…
Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, where Tom and Daisy are simply married because “Daisy is money” (Fitzgerald 120). This proves that Tom has a desire to be with her in order to climb the social ladder, which is a big deal in this time period, and not because he’s actually in love with her. Gatsby and Daisy, however, have a mutual love for each other, with Daisy even admitting to Gatsby “you know I love you” (Fitzgerald 125). This proves that he is the one that helps fulfill her stimulating and challenging need, enabling her to confide in Gatsby to satisfy those needs since Tom is no longer able to fulfill

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