Jay Chatter

The Great Gatsby

Jaime

Jordyn Koons, Editor

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Spoiler alert! If you haven’t read the book or watched the movie, do not read ahead.

When I first heard that we were reading “The Great Gatsby” in my English III class I was thrilled because I own the movie and absolutely love it. I was excited to see what really unfolds in the book.

For those who don’t know, “The Great Gatsby”, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, is a story told by Nick Carraway, when he was once Jay Gatsby’s neighbor sometime after 1922. The story begins with Nick moving down to live in the West Egg village to become a bond man. He moves into a small little home between two mantions, one of which was Gatsby’s. One night Nick travels over to have dinner with his cousin, Daisy Buchanan, and her husband, Tom Buchanan, as well as professional golfer, Jordan Baker. While at dinner that night Tom receives a phone call and leaves the room, soon followed out by Daisy. Nick tries to engage in a conversation with Baker but is soon shushed quiet, Baker tells Nick that Tom has a mistress in New York. When Nick returned home that night he notices his neighbor standing out on the dock, as if reaching for the green light across the bay.

One day, Tom invites Nick to go and have lunch with him in New York. On their way there, while they were traveling through the Valley of the Ashes, Tom grabs Nick’s arm and they both jump off the train. “I want you to meet someone,” Tom explains. Tom brings Nick to a garage to meet his mistress, Myrtle Wilson. As the group travels the rest of the way to New York Myrtle exclaims she wants a puppy for the apartment Tom keeps for her in New York. After getting a dog, they go to the apartment and Myrtle calls friends to come over and they all spend the rest of the afternoon drinking. Nick explains that, that night is the second night he has ever been drunk. After a few more hours of drinking and drunken behavior, the night ends when Myrtle and Tom begin fighting over Daisy, his wife. After Myrtle begins screaming Daisy, Tom loses his anger and breaks Myrtle’s nose.

Within the next few weeks, at the beginning of summer, Gatsby begins hosting huge weekly parties. One day, one of Gatsby’s servants arrives at Nick’s door with an invitation to his next party, when Nick arrives it seems that he is the only one to get an invitation. Even though Gatsby’s house is packed with people, Nick seems to be alone, so he decides to get roaring drunk. A few drinks later Nick meets up with Jordan Baker, and they set off to find Gatsby. When they were not successful finding him, they decided to sit in the garden. They join a table with a man Nick has never met before, but that man knows Nick. He recognizes him from the war. Once they start talking Nick exclaims that he has not yet met the host, and that he has heard that Gatsby has killed a man before. The man looks at Nick and says, “Sorry, Old Sport. I guess I have not been a good host, you see I’m Gatsby. I thought you knew.”

After Gatsby introduces himself, he has to excuse himself for a business matter, but promises to return later. Shortly after he is gone, a man comes up and says that Gatsby would like to speak alone with Miss Baker. Over an hour later Jordan returns and exclaims that she just heard the most amazing thing, but she could not share. As she turns to leave she yells to Nick that they should have tea next week and to look her up in the telephone book.  As the summer progresses Nick and Gatsby become close. One morning Gatsby picks Nick up to have lunch in New York with him. While they are there Gatsby explains that he is going to ask a big favor of Nick, and that Jordan will explain everything at tea this afternoon.

When having tea with Jordan that afternoon, Nick learns the amazing story that Jordan heard at the party. It turns out that Gatsby is in love with Daisy Buchanan, they met a few years ago when Gatsby was in the army, but they couldn’t be together because Gatsby could not support her. In the years after the army, Gatsby makes his fortune in hopes of winning back Daisy. He buys a huge house across the bay of hers and he throws elaborate parties in hopes of her coming. Gatsby is now ready to be face-to-face with Daisy and he asks Nick to invite Daisy over to his little house for tea, where Gatsby would then show up unannounced. When the day of the meeting arrives Gatsby makes sure everything is perfect for his lost lover. He hires being to cut the yard and he has a ton of flowers delivered. When Daisy arrives and the see each other for the first time in years it is awkward and nervous at first, but soon they grow comfortable and are back to their old selves. As the afternoon increases the three of them move from Nick’s house to Gatsby’s. While there Gatsby shows Daisy around and they spend the rest of the night dancing.

A couple days later Tom and Daisy attend one of Gatsby’s parties. While Tom spends the time chasing other women, Gatsby and Daisy sneak off to Nicks yard to get a moment alone. After Tom and Daisy Buchanan leave, Gatsby tells Nick his plans to recreate the past with Daisy but Nick warns him not to pressure her to soon. As the summer continues Gatsby and Daisy spend more and more time together as they continue to grow.

One afternoon Nick and Gatsby travel over to East Egg to have lunch with the Buchanans and Jordan Baker. Nervous and oppressed by the heat Daisy suggest a trip to New York. No longer trying to hide her feelings for Gatsby, Daisy pays special attention to him and Tom picks up on what’s going on. As they head into the City, Nick, Jordan, and Tom take Gatsby’s car, while Gatsby and Daisy take Toms car. Low on gas, Tom stops at Wilson’s Garage. While there Tom learns that Wilson knows about Myrtles secret life, but he does not know who the man is. Wilson also tells Tom of his and Myrtle’s plan to move West. It seems the Tom has lost a wife and a Mistress in one day.

The group arrives at the Plaza Hotel. Tom then begins badgering Gatsby with questions about his intentions with Daisy. Eventually the truth comes out, Gatsby then wants Daisy to admit that she has never loved Tom at all. When Daisy can’t do this Gatsby declares that she is leaving Tom, but Tom understands Daisy better and he knows that she will never leave him. Tom then orders Daisy in Gatsby to return home in Gatsby’s car with Nick, Tom, and Jordan to follow. As Toms car comes to Wilsons Garage he stops to see what all the comotion is about. It turns out that Myrtle Wilson was hit and killed by an oncoming car, who never bothered to stop. The car turns out to be Gatsby’s car. When the three of them return to East Egg Nick finds Gatsby outside of the Buchanan’s home, keeping watch for Daisy. After a few questions Nick learns that Daisy was actually the one driving, but Gatsby is prepared to take all the blame. With all of that day weighing down on Nick, he returns to his home in West Egg. The next day Nick is unable to concentrate at work and he plans to take an early train home to check on Gatsby.

It now transitions over to Wilson, who is conceived by grief and sets out to kill the man that murdered Myrtle. Nick traces Wilsons journey which places him at Gatsby’s house by early afternoon. Wilson murdered Gatsby then turns the run on himself.

After Gatsby’s death, Nick is left to make all the arrangements for the funeral. Whenever Gatsby threw a party everyone came, yet no one wanted to come to his funeral. Even Daisy suddenly went away on a trip. The only people who mourned Gatsby was his father, Nick, a few servants, and the mailman. When Gatsby died he was completely forgotten. After everything that has happened Nick plans to move Midwest. Before leave he sees Tom one last time. Tom questions Nick as to why he wouldn’t shake his hand, Nick respond saying, “You know what I think of you.” It was Tom who led Wilson to Gatsby. Nick no longer wants anything to do with Tom, Daisy, or anyone that is like them. The book comes to in end with Nick visiting Gatsby’s mansion one last time. He stands where Gatsby once stood, arm outstretched towards the green light across the bay. Nick notes that we are all a little like Gatsby, boats moving up a river, going forward but continually feeling the pull of the past.

One thing that bothered me not only in the movie, but also in the book, is when Daisy just leaves at the end. She was just as much involved in this as Gatsby was. After that day she had tea with Nick and she saw Gatsby, she never had to return and continue to see Gatsby. If she knew that she wasn’t going to be able to leave Tom then there was no use in leading Gatsby on. Everything he did in life was for her and she just took advantage of that. Gatsby would do anything for her, even die for her. Daisy was the one that hit and killed Myrtle, but Gatby was so blind in love he was willing to take full blame for what happened and that cost him his life. Sould Daisy of killed Myrtle? I understand she is upset because that is who Tom is cheating on her with, but isn’t she cheating on Tom with Gatsby? I love the 1920’s, everything about it and I thought that this book does a really good job of showcasing what it was like back then, but no matter how great everything else is I can not get over what Daisy does. She literally takes everything from him, then when his funeral comes around she doesn’t even bother to show up. Gatsby would have done anything for her, but she just uses him.

One of my favorite scenes from the 2013 movie is when Daisy is coming over to Nick’s house for tea. Although Nick assures Gatsby that everything is fine he still goes over the top decorating the yard and bringing in flowers. When it finally comes time and Daisy arrives Gatsby gets so nervous he walked out the back door right into the pouring rain. At first Nick did not know where Gatsby went, he was in the living room when Nick went out to bring in Daisy, but shortly there’s a knock at the back door and in walks a soaked Gatsby. I am not sure why, but it is one of my favorite scenes. It is funny and it shows how they are able to rekindle their love after years of being apart.

 

About the Writer
Jordyn Koons, Editor

Hi! My name is Jordyn Koons and I am the editor of the Marshfield Jay Chatter. I am 17 years old and a senior at MHS. My favorite thing to do is hang out...

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