6 Dec. 2012
The Reunion of the Great Gatsby and the Beautiful Buchanan
In the film Moulin Rouge, there is a famous quote that states, “The greatest thing you'll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return”. In F. Scott Fitzgerald’s, The Great Gatsby, the story follows the main character, Nick, on his journey through New York during the 1920’s full of glamour, partying and fresh new faces. During this time, Nick meets the great, but mysterious Jay Gatsby, and as the story unfolds, the readers get to learn more and more about Gatsby and discover his love for the beautiful Daisy Buchanan, past life, and the question as to what makes him so great. It is during Chapter Five though, a chapter focusing on the reunion of Gatsby and Daisy, that is the most pivotal due to the use of the Fitzgerald’s effective descriptions that show Gatsby’s affection and determination to impress Daisy and help gain sympathy for the story’s intriguing character.
When the chapter begins, Nick returns from a date with Jordan Baker, but when he arrives home he, “was afraid for a moment that [his] house was on fire. Two o’clock and the whole corner of the peninsula was blazing with light” (Fitzgerald 81). To his relief his house is not ablaze, but is surprised to find that the very bright house belongs to Gatsby, in which he tells him that, “Your place looks like the World’s Fair” (81). Nick’s description of Gatsby’s house not only shows how much wealth Gatsby has, but additionally foreshadows that he is secretly preparing for Daisy in the hopes that when she arrives to Nick’s house, she’ll be curious as to who lives next door to him. In preparation for Daisy, Gatsby begins to worry about the status of Nick’s grass since, “there was a sharp line where [Nick’s] ragged lawn ended and the darker, well-kept expanse of [Gatsby’s] began” (82) he sends a servant over to Nick’s house to have it cut. Between his over the top house decorations and sending a servant to cut Nick’s grass, readers are not able to feel much sympathy for Gatsby because it seems like he’s being a little selfish and only using Nick to get to Daisy. On the day of the meeting, Gatsby arrives to Nick Gatsby is so nervous that when Nick tells him about the grass, Gatsby seems to have forgotten he even sent a servant and asks Nick if, “[he’s] got everything [he] needs in the shape of-of tea” (84). Nick’s depiction of Gatsby shows the love, devotion, and nervousness he has towards seeing Daisy in making sure everything is perfect for when she arrives to Nick’s house, and cause readers to have a change of mind about Gatsby, becoming more sympathetic now that it’s clear that he set up a perfect reunion and just wants things to run smoothly. When Daisy finally arrives, the encounter is awkward. Upon seeing Gatsby for the first time, “[he’s] as pale as death, with his hands plunged like weights in his coat pockets, standing in a puddle of water” (86) and when she tells him that she is happy to see him, being so nervous accidently knocks over Nick’s clock, “[but catches] it with trembling fingers and [sets] it back in place” (86). To Daisy’s surprise, he even remembers how long it’s been since they’ve seen each other, telling her that, “[It’s been] five years next November” (87). As the meeting goes on though, it stops raining, the awkwardness fades and Gatsby and Daisy, “were sitting at either end of the couch, looking at each other as if some question has been asked, or was in the air, and every vestige of embarrassment was gone” (89). Throughout the first half of the chapter, the setting plays an important role by representing Gatsby’s mood before and during the encounter. Before, and even after Daisy arrives, Fitzgerald portrays Gatsby’s nervousness through the cloudy and rainy weather, but once things start to smooth out and not be so awkward, Gatsby’s smile and happiness illuminate the room just as the sun starts to shine. The reader is also...