Saturday, September 15, 2012

Analyzing Gaston

Back in January, I wrote about Gaston from Beauty and the Beast, and people are still interested in the topic.

Reading people's comments have caused me to think about another moment in the movie: the ending, where Gaston fights with the Beast.  If I recall correctly, the Beast and Gaston have never seen each other before the fight.  In fact, the Beast has no idea who Gaston is at all.  He's just fighting for self-preservation.

Why is Gaston fighting?  I'm not entirely convinced that his motivations have anything to do with Belle.  You could argue he's trying to impress her, or you could argue that he's being a jealous ex-boyfriend who thinks, "If I can't have her, no one can!"  But really, I think Gaston's reason for fighting the Beast is more about himself than it is about Belle.

Gaston is basically fighting the Beast, in order to help his bruised ego.  After all, he's supposed to be famous and well-loved for being a master hunter.  But then his ego and reputation took a huge blow when Belle turned down his marriage proposal, in front of the entire town.  I mean, thinking about it.  The best-looking girl in town just dumped him before they were even together, and everybody was watching.

And that's why Gaston decides to go after the Beast.  He feels like it will save his reputation; if he kills the mythical monster, it will "prove" that he's not a loser.  Gaston manipulates the townspeople into forming an angry mob not because he wants backup, but because he wants lots of people there to witness his heroic victory over a foul monster.

I'm relatively sure that Gaston has no idea the Beast used to be a human. The Beast says a few things to Gaston, but it doesn't seem to register with Gaston that the Beast is a talking, thinking human being.
Anyway, that's just some amateur psychoanalysis on Gaston.  I think I'm saying that his actions towards the end boil down to the fact that he only cares about himself and looking good in front of others.


Anonymous said...

If you want to psychoanalysis Disney's Beauty and the Beast, there have been psychology papers and articles written over both Belle's development of Stockholm Syndrome and the Beast's development of Lima Syndrome. Their relationship is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to psychological problems with the story though. Disney really watered it down, but even in the original 18th century story, it's a horrible "love" story.

Moriah said...

You're totally right Micheal, I think Geaston just wants to have a good reputation , and his good looks , more than he loves Belle. And I think he knows it too.


Guest said...

I can't believe, Anonymous. How dare you suggest that Belle has Stockholm Syndrome and the Beast has Lima Syndrome. You made it sound them sound like they should be ashamed of themselves for meeting and falling in love with each other.

The people who typed that Belle has Stockholm Syndrome are liars. Belle chose to remain with the Beast because he saved her from a pack of wolves. I mean, she could have gone back to her village. left the Beast to die, and likely become a slave of Gaston. But she didn't tanks to her conscience.

Also, Belle was able to put the Beast in her place. And that's one of the things I admire, respect, and like about her. Thanks to her, the enchanted prince was able to reform. If it hadn't been for her, then he would have remained a beast for the rest of his life.

As for you, Moriah, why'd you agree with Anonymous? He or she sounded like she or her is biased.