Explorations (**BD2 Movie Spoilers!**)

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Tornado
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Re: Explorations

Post by Tornado »

corona wrote:I can really see that. Jacob as the drug that numbed the pain, and what will be needed again if Edward leaves. And Edward exacerbates the fear, unwittingly, by demanding marriage first, requiring in essence a test of her devotion to him (or is he just buying time?). Well, yes to both; although his proposal is mostly because of love. Yet Edward's great fear is that Bella will resent him for changing her once it is done. I can see both fears feeding off each other (and they come very close to revealing their true fears to each other: You don't want to change me; You don't want to marry me).
Yes, as Kristen said in one interview: they both want the same thing from each other, they just have different ways of expressing it. For Bella, the sign of her eternal commitment to Edward is becoming a vampire so she can be with him forever. For Edward it's that she agrees to marry him. In his human experience that is a sign of eternal commitment; if she's that committed to him, maybe it would be okay to change her.
corona wrote:And I can see Jacob now as being the battleground. Edward's proposal has the unspoken request: You Go First. He is asking Bella to put her full trust in him again, even as he is trying to buy more time and never really claims her, allowing her relationship with Jacob to continue. And I can see Bella reading that as ambivalence on Edward's part, more of a reason why she can't simply let Jacob go. For the first time, I actually have a small measure of sympathy for Jacob. He is being used by both sides as Bella and Edward are working out their issues through him.
Yes, and of course, there's Edward still down on himself, thinking always that he is the lesser option, because he is a vampire. He wants Bella to have the best in life, and he does not equate turning her into a vampire with the best. So he is torn. He wants her - she is willing, but he loves her enough to wonder whether it's denying her the best she could have in life.
corona wrote:That's no slam on Edward, the best choice of all for Bella is Edward. But if Edward will not change her, is her second best choice staying with Edward while human? I think it might be Jacob.
Yes, if Bella isn't changed their life would always be one of frustrations, with Edward forever burning because of her scent, terrified of injuring her with his strength, and Bella ageing all the time. It was never a practical solution. I'm not going to say better Jacob than that, but vampirism was always the best choice, with all things taken into consideration. It is clear from the way the Cullens live that vampirism does not have to be evil, so therefore, although there are serious drawbacks (like that she can't see her family again), if she wants to be with Edward it is the best option.
corona wrote:That doesn't mean I still won't swing a baseball bat at him, since he is begging for it. But maybe I'll use the bat of understanding instead of the bat of ill intent. It's all okay, as long as I feel better, about myself, which is what is really important. :D
Can I help??? :D
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Openhome
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Re: Explorations

Post by Openhome »

To throw a wrench, or devil's advocate, into the fray...

Sometimes I think we don't take Stephenie seriously about things she's said. There are some really good reasons for this, like a fantasy world that doesn't always make sense, and a total lack of math ability (see ANY date in the entire series), however, I think we need to take what she said about Jacob seriously.

When Twilight came out, he was a side character only. He wasn't set to come into the story again until she finished it in FD. Side character. He was just this young kid who would make a great romantic interest for their daughter.

Then two more books came between Twilight and BD, and WHAM! -- Insta-Love Interest, just add fur!

SM had to create a viable option to Edward from a boy younger than Bella. He couldn't be like Edward because Edward was perfection to Bella, so SM made him the perfect human option. He had to be everything that Bella couldn't have in Edward, everything she would miss. He was her numbing drug because he had to be. He had to do something, anything, to help Bella move on past Edward. The result is a convoluted character that ended up falling short because he had to.

Yes, had Edward never returned, Jacob could have been Bella's sunshine. That much is clear. He is a solid choice -- the choice of a human life that would be better than the half life of not being a vampire -- but he must also always be only the second choice because he is meant to be second best for Bella.
corona wrote:I can even see where choosing Jacob would be the "healthy" choice, at least as long as she stays human. That's no slam on Edward, the best choice of all for Bella is Edward. But if Edward will not change her, is her second best choice staying with Edward while human? I think it might be Jacob.
Agreed and well said.

Like you said, Corona, Jacob IS the battle ground because of who he is and what he represents. He IS what Bella must fight against and choose to lose. He must be sacrificed if she is to stay with Edward, both he and all he represents.

But that's not easy for an author to do. We all know and understand that.
but I can understand how SM might feel about Jacob, dragging him, an innocent bystander, through the angst of our young couple and then not wanting to take anything more away from him.
As such, he was supposed to be the tragic hero, but as you noted, SM couldn't do it. So now he is in this odd state of a forced HEA. He should have been the sacrifice physically that he was symbolically, but she couldn't do it. SM couldn't kill Paris to save Romeo.

Tornado
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Re: Explorations

Post by Tornado »

I agree with that, my only problem being did she have to make his behaviour quite so bad? Even in New Moon I never got the impression that he would go to such lengths to try and win Bella. He seemed like a kid with some decency, but all that seemed to be thrown out the window in Eclipse.

I get that he thought that he had to do everything he could to save Bella from "the monster", but surely even he, in his youthful inexperience, could see that he was overstepping the mark, and more than once. I cannot equate the good hearted kid that Jacob seemed to be in the first two books with the arrogant, self-righteous being that he became. He returned to decency a bit in BD, but even then the books ended with him still largely unresolved for me, as it's difficult to see past the arrogance, even post-imprint, although there is some sign of resolution there.

This makes me believe he's capable of moving past it (and probably has by the end of BD, internally at least), and all I want is to hear him admit that he was wrong!!! I don't really care what he admits to being wrong about, I just want to hear it from his own mouth that he acknowledges that he's not the be-all, end-all of knowledge on everything and that he has a lot to learn. I think, once I hear that, I can be reconciled to Jacob. I think it's something that, if we had more on their story, we would get. And although I'm not particularly interested in a story just about Jacob, I wouldn't mind something so that I could just hear him acknowledge that his judgement is not always sound. That would be proof to me that he is the good hearted kid I thought he was in the first two books.

However, if this is something he would never do, then I would have to say that Jacob is not good in any sense that I can understand, and I would have to abandon all the attempts I have made during reading these books to make excuses for his behaviour, because he doesn't deserve them. I must confess my enjoyment of the books would probably lessen too, because I can't believe that he is worth the time of day from Bella, anymore than someone like Mike Newton or Tyler Crowley, unless he can be a man and admit that he's just as human (apart from some obvious differences!) as everyone else.
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corona
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Re: Explorations

Post by corona »

Tornado wrote:
corona wrote:That's no slam on Edward, the best choice of all for Bella is Edward. But if Edward will not change her, is her second best choice staying with Edward while human? I think it might be Jacob.
Yes, if Bella isn't changed their life would always be one of frustrations, with Edward forever burning because of her scent, terrified of injuring her with his strength, and Bella ageing all the time. It was never a practical solution. I'm not going to say better Jacob than that, but vampirism was always the best choice, with all things taken into consideration. It is clear from the way the Cullens live that vampirism does not have to be evil, so therefore, although there are serious drawbacks (like that she can't see her family again), if she wants to be with Edward it is the best option.
I also think Bella would still choose Edward while still staying human. But this scene really brings into focus why that wouldn't be good for Bella. There are benefits and sacrifices for both lifestyles. Staying as a human with Edward would mean losing many of those benefits she has as a human, and she will be sacrificing something unique to that particular pairing, aging while Edward stays young. She will have to make sacrifices becoming a vampire, yes, but it becomes very clear that that is what she will have to do, that it doesn't make any sense not to become one, at least not if she wants to stay with Edward.

I can see the final death in this scene of Edward's "second" option, staying with her while keeping her human. I think Edward becomes more resigned to the inevitable as the story progresses in EC, but he is still holding on to that option as an alternative he could live with (and he's been saying as much the entire series).

In other words, by giving Bella a really good option as a human, the strongest case is now presented that in choosing Edward, she MUST become a vampire. I have no idea if that is a point that SM explicitly wanted to get across. I doubt Bella gave it much thought, because this point was always ridiculously obvious to her. But Edward could only see the downside of changing Bella. Edward ends up getting his wish, that Bella finally sees what she is giving up, but by accomplishing that he ironically ends up making Bella's arguments for changing her airtight.

How about a Twilight "apple" analogy? Before taking that TGDS bite, Bella is ignorant of all of the sacrifices she will be making, so that a human existence with Edward might be possible even as it would always be bittersweet. After taking that bite, such an existence is no longer possible.
Openhome wrote:
corona wrote:but I can understand how SM might feel about Jacob, dragging him, an innocent bystander, through the angst of our young couple and then not wanting to take anything more away from him.
As such, he was supposed to be the tragic hero, but as you noted, SM couldn't do it. So now he is in this odd state of a forced HEA. He should have been the sacrifice physically that he was symbolically, but she couldn't do it. SM couldn't kill Paris to save Romeo.
And she even had second thoughts about Bree, didn't she? If she felt that way about Bree, how much more must she have cared for Jacob?
Tornado wrote:I agree with that, my only problem being did she have to make his behaviour quite so bad? Even in New Moon I never got the impression that he would go to such lengths to try and win Bella. He seemed like a kid with some decency, but all that seemed to be thrown out the window in Eclipse.
......................
I don't really care what he admits to being wrong about, I just want to hear it from his own mouth that he acknowledges that he's not the be-all, end-all of knowledge on everything and that he has a lot to learn. I think, once I hear that, I can be reconciled to Jacob.
I completely agree. The ramping up of Jacob's anger and bitterness was over the top, but I think done for a purpose. And in the end, it really didn't work for me.

I think maybe SM was wanting to pull a Tom Hanks "Big" on Jacob. A child makes a wish and enters the world of adults, but then wants to become just a kid again and return to his former self. I think SM wanted to give Jacob back his original role as that good-natured kid on the beach. That was the problem, though. The Tom Hanks character in Big was always a child, even while masquerading as an adult. Jacob is an adolescent made into a man physically by the time of BD, and even has his adult moments as well. Just before the imprinting he accepts his role and status as the alpha and grants Bella the exception to the treaty. I thought that was one of Jacob's best moments in the story.

Jacob can't go back, but I think SM really wanted that for him, even though it no longer made sense. He's nearly seven foot tall for crying out loud. His obsession with Bella keeps him near for the imprinting, and his inner turmoil is meant to demonstrate his own personal need for a resolution. The anger and acting out is ramped up to lead to the scene where an existential need for the imprinting manifests, saving the life of Renesmee.

I don't agree with these choices for Jacob, at all. But having done this, the best thing for Jacob at that point is to have his own epiphany. Not a love-drug induced haze, but some honest to God reflection over what he has gone through and things he has done and said over the past several months.

And there is the conflict. Jacob, the wolf behemoth, has just imprinted on a newborn baby. No matter which way you slice it, it isn't going to work for a lot of fans. I would have liked to have seen Jacob acknowledge he has made mistakes, but the kind of adult behavior that may work to his character's benefit also makes his relationship with Nessie seem even more bizarre by emphasizing the adult/child disparity. Suddenly the path he took to get there, obsession, lust, anger, passion, desire, no longer work. Problems, problems. What to do, what to do?

In the end, I think SM settled for placing Jacob back on his original path by essentially baptising him in the waters of imprinting, removing all of his sins and restoring the innocence that SM took from him by elevating his role in the story. Just as SM makes him into an adult to have a relationship with Bella, she turns him back into a child again for Nessie, de-sexualizing our nearly 17 year old, nearly 7 foot man-child. I think SM had taken Jacob way too far down the adult path to pull him back, but I think that was what she wanted.

So we get the imprinting reveal scene with Bella. And doesn't the way that end, with Bella sitting off in a corner ashamed of her attack, tell us everything we need to know? Seth, the innocent, was the one injured, but isn't that really a way of saying that Jacob is innocent? Bella thinks she is talking to the Jacob we have all come to know. She doesn't realize that this is the new Jacob who appears to be only dimly aware that they even have a past. Jacob doesn't even think about those things anymore, because Jacob has become a newborn himself.

"...Bella, things are different with us now, but you’ll always be my best friend, and I’ll always love you. But I’ll love you the right way now. There’s finally a balance. We both have people we can’t live without."

This is just my opinion, but that statement by Jacob is likely the closest he will ever get to acknowledging any personal responsibility for causing Bella any unjustified pain. But, he doesn't really admit to anything, and note he is also reinforcing his claim on Nessie. I really needed something more from Jacob, not a statement that he will be good to Bella, now that he has found a true soulmate for himself (who just happens to be her daughter).

Frankly, I think that if there are any additional stories to be told with Jacob in them, that one of the plot elements you will NOT see is Jacob coming to terms with his behavior during this period. I get the distinct impression that as far as Jacob is concerned, SM doesn't see that there is anything that needs to be forgiven.
"It will take an amazing amount of control,” she mused. “More even than Carlisle has. He may be just strong enough…the only thing he’s not strong enough to do is stay away from her. That’s a lost cause.”

Tornado
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Re: Explorations

Post by Tornado »

corona wrote:I doubt Bella gave it much thought, because this point was always ridiculously obvious to her. But Edward could only see the downside of changing Bella. Edward ends up getting his wish, that Bella finally sees what she is giving up, but by accomplishing that he ironically ends up making Bella's arguments for changing her airtight.
Eclipse was about making Bella think about what she was doing. That's why there was so much emphasis on newborns and what she would give up. She is still prepared to pay that price, which does speak volumes about the way she feels for Edward.
corona wrote:Just before the imprinting he accepts his role and status as the alpha and grants Bella the exception to the treaty. I thought that was one of Jacob's best moments in the story.
I agree. His standing up to Sam (even though that was more to save Bella) and giving Edward permission to change Bella were the only truly self sacrificial things he did in the entire saga.
corona wrote:I don't agree with these choices for Jacob, at all. But having done this, the best thing for Jacob at that point is to have his own epiphany. Not a love-drug induced haze, but some honest to God reflection over what he has gone through and things he has done and said over the past several months.
This is the problem with the narration switching back to Bella at this point. I really think that Jake, especially in regards to his relationship with Edward, which has clearly changed by the end of BD, has reached this epiphany, been reconciled to it, and has moved on. We just didn't get to see it, because it wasn't enough a part of the overall story (and the book was already reeeeeeeeeally long!) to be included.
corona wrote:Frankly, I think that if there are any additional stories to be told with Jacob in them, that one of the plot elements you will NOT see is Jacob coming to terms with his behavior during this period. I get the distinct impression that as far as Jacob is concerned, SM doesn't see that there is anything that needs to be forgiven.
I don't know about that, I think it more likely to be skipped because there's no valid reason to include something like that in the plot of a future story, as it wouldn't keep the pace going, as that revelation relates more to the BD story. But you never know.
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Re: Explorations

Post by corona »

Tornado wrote:
corona wrote:I don't agree with these choices for Jacob, at all. But having done this, the best thing for Jacob at that point is to have his own epiphany. Not a love-drug induced haze, but some honest to God reflection over what he has gone through and things he has done and said over the past several months.
This is the problem with the narration switching back to Bella at this point. I really think that Jake, especially in regards to his relationship with Edward, which has clearly changed by the end of BD, has reached this epiphany, been reconciled to it, and has moved on. We just didn't get to see it, because it wasn't enough a part of the overall story (and the book was already reeeeeeeeeally long!) to be included.
I agree that his relationship with Edward has changed, but I don't think that means that Jacob actually had an epiphany. If he did, then he was able to reconcile his epiphany with himself without informing anyone else about it. His relationship with everyone changed now that he is happy after his imprinting. The imprinting alone would be sufficient explanation for that. If he holds any new insights, he hasn't shared them with anyone else, which is why I lost any connection I had to him.

I want to go back to that earlier quote I had from him and take another look at it, because it is the only thing he really gives us.

"I’m not going to say thank you,” I told him. “You’re still putting Charlie at a huge risk."

"I am sorry about it hurting you. I didn’t know it was like that. Bella, things are different with us now, but you’ll always be my best friend, and I’ll always love you. But I’ll love you the right way now. There’s finally a balance. We both have people we can’t live without."


This is one of the weakest mea culpas I have ever read. Jacob gives us the absolute minimum.

Jacob is sorry that Bella is going to be in absolute hellfire agony, but he can't live without Nessie, so he would have done it anyway. Would he have at least consulted with the parents first, if he had known? The text indicates he wouldn't, as I read "can't live without" as being absolute. He can't live without Nessie. Having the Cullens move away is unthinkable. He therefore might be terribly sorry that Bella has to go through with this, but consulting with them beforehand would run the risk that they would say "no" to his plan. Charlie's safety appears to be an afterthought.

I think here that Jacob is just being blunt and honest. I don't fault him for that. I didn't particularly care for Rosalie, but I did like her blunt honesty. The problem with Rosalie's blunt honesty, though, was that it was never leavened with compassion. I'm not getting much more from Jacob here, other than that avoiding pain for Bella is a preference, not a requirement. Contrast his handling of this with the way that Bella agonized over causing him pain in Eclipse.

"I'll love you the right way now." That is good, I'm fine with that. But the reason given is "There's finally a balance. We both have people we can’t live without." That's a pretty bare statement. He will love Bella the right way now, because he no longer loves her the obsessive way and has imprinted on her daughter, and Nessie is now his. I already mentioned him reinforcing his claim on Nessie. But his statement also shows no conscious consideration that he bears any personal responsibility for the former imbalance. Bella is a married woman. He had to let go of her at some point and acknowledge that she had chosen Edward. He is admitting he never did let go until forced to through his imprinting. By not acknowledging any responsibility for that, there is a subtle implication that Bella is the responsible party in this. Furthermore, Nessie could well be taken as the price that Bella (and Edward) had to pay for creating that imbalance.

I'm aware I'm reading a lot into that statement of Jacob's, but this is all that Jacob is giving us. And it's precisely because Jacob isn't giving us any more, when he should be and the circumstances demand it, that I think a strong argument can be made that Jacob doesn't, in fact, feel that he was responsible for anything. In other words, no epiphany because none is required.
"It will take an amazing amount of control,” she mused. “More even than Carlisle has. He may be just strong enough…the only thing he’s not strong enough to do is stay away from her. That’s a lost cause.”

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Re: Explorations

Post by Tornado »

corona wrote:I agree that his relationship with Edward has changed, but I don't think that means that Jacob actually had an epiphany. If he did, then he was able to reconcile his epiphany with himself without informing anyone else about it. His relationship with everyone changed now that he is happy after his imprinting. The imprinting alone would be sufficient explanation for that. If he holds any new insights, he hasn't shared them with anyone else, which is why I lost any connection I had to him.
I agree that we didn't experience it, but I think that's more to do with how long the book was, and making something like that relevant to the rest of the story as it returns to Bella's narration. That he and Edward discussed their new relationship is a distinct possibility, we just didn't get to experience it. However, I will acknowledge that I don't know if Jake would have gone far enough in his epiphany at this stage. He probably still needs to grow up a bit more.
corona wrote:"I’m not going to say thank you,” I told him. “You’re still putting Charlie at a huge risk."

"I am sorry about it hurting you. I didn’t know it was like that. Bella, things are different with us now, but you’ll always be my best friend, and I’ll always love you. But I’ll love you the right way now. There’s finally a balance. We both have people we can’t live without."


This is one of the weakest mea culpas I have ever read. Jacob gives us the absolute minimum.

Jacob is sorry that Bella is going to be in absolute hellfire agony, but he can't live without Nessie, so he would have done it anyway. Would he have at least consulted with the parents first, if he had known? The text indicates he wouldn't, as I read "can't live without" as being absolute. He can't live without Nessie. Having the Cullens move away is unthinkable. He therefore might be terribly sorry that Bella has to go through with this, but consulting with them beforehand would run the risk that they would say "no" to his plan. Charlie's safety appears to be an afterthought.
In Jacob's defense, he didn't know that being near Charlie would cause Bella physical pain, and he is genuinely sorry for that. Other than that, though, I agree with you. I often imagine him sitting back smugly when Bella successfully manages to avoid killing Charlie that day, saying, "See? I was right!" But the fact is he was only right because Bella is strong, not because he did the right thing. He placed Charlie at an incredible risk, and why did he do this? Because he didn't trust anybody but himself. He didn't believe for a moment that any of the Cullens, including Bella, would care if he was separated from Nessie (we know that Bella was already worrying about that). For someone who is supposed to know her so well, this doesn't exactly compliment her. He knows how much she cares about him, and he doesn't think that she will help them work something out so that he doesn't have to be separated from Nessie? Of course she will! She couldn't live with the guilt if she didn't. But he never trusts anyone at any point in the books after he begins to phase. He only trusts himself.
corona wrote:I'm aware I'm reading a lot into that statement of Jacob's, but this is all that Jacob is giving us. And it's precisely because Jacob isn't giving us any more, when he should be and the circumstances demand it, that I think a strong argument can be made that Jacob doesn't, in fact, feel that he was responsible for anything. In other words, no epiphany because none is required.
I still think he might at some stage, at least as far as Edward is concerned. Let's face it, there's no doubt in anyone's book that he treated Edward disgracefully, and his reasons for doing it were based on incorrect information (because he never trusts anyone's judgement but his own). So perhaps in time he will realise he was wrong about Edward, and probably already has. Does he ever acknowledge this? Possibly. Does he ever say it out loud? I'd hope so, if he is a man. It's possible he has done it by the end of BD, but it wasn't relevant enough to the pacing to put into the book. But then, maybe he hasn't. Maybe he hasn't grown up enough, and maybe he never will be man enough to admit it. However, if he does do it at some point, this is what I want to read.
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Re: Explorations

Post by Alphie »

You guys always do such a great job of quoting each other, and I'm lousy at it! So forgive me for not dragging in all the quotes I want to use and being specific. I just wanted to jump in for a second with a few thoughts.

All of the arguments about Jacob's behavior are valid. He is very immature and demanding and doesn't see how he's wrong. But I have two type of "Devil's Advocate" points to make in regards to that.

1. He IS immature! He's 16-17 years old. I know very few boys that age who are decent enough to fully apologize and own up to their mistakes. I think because we do like Jacob and want him to be a "hero" that we expect him to behave like one and own his mistakes. I think that part of the way Stephenie wrote him was true to him being a young teen who just doesn't know better. It's not an excuse, and it doesn't make it right, but it is the fact.

2. Edward behaves just as poorly in these books. I've seen just as many "Edward is a control freak" posts as I have seen "Jacob is immature" type posts. Again, one of the things I like about the series is that, regardless of how Bella seems them, neither one of her choices is perfect. Both male characters are flawed and damaged. We can't lay all the blame for everything at Jacob's feet. Did Edward ever fully apologize to Jacob or Bella for the control he forced on Bella's life - or, like Jacob, did he always assume that his way was the better way? Sure, he did eventually allow Bella some freedom to go visit Jacob in Eclipse, but that was only because he would rather she go safely than sneak out. And the only reason he allowed her to carry the baby after she got pregnant was because Rose was protecting Bella. Edward believed for a good, long time that he was right about the baby. I don't remember him apologizing to Bella for being such a jerk about the pregnancy and not believing.

I could go on, but I think you see my point. Everyone here knows I'm more of an Edward fan than a Jacob fan, but that is only in regards to who I always thought Bella should end up with. I always saw the good and the bad in both characters. But for Bella, she needed to be with Edward. So I make those points only to play devil's advocate.

Jacob's line about how they can both be happy with the person they have in their life is way premature and again reflects how immature and young he is. I don't believe for one second that Nessie and Jake's life will be an easy slide into romance and love where they live happily ever after. Stephenie left BD on a cliff hanger for me. Sure, Bella's story is wrapped up, but it seemed pretty clear to me that she set up the love triangle of Nahuel/Nessie/Jacob. And consider that as she grows up Nessie will soon understand that Jacob once was in love with Bella to the point where he wanted Bella to abort Nessie! Jacob might not have had to apologize and atone fully in Breaking Dawn, but I don't think Nessie will just fall into his loving arms without some explanation. He will have to own up to that behavior at some point. And his maturity will develop as he leads his pack... which will eventually have to leave Forks when the Cullens do. Even if Jacob's motives behind telling Charlie were selfish, it only bought him a short amount of time. Bella, Edward, and Nessie won't be able to stay in Forks much longer. Nessie is growing too quickly. And the whole Cullen family can only stay a few more years, tops, before the people in Forks grow suspicious. Jacob will go where ever Nessie goes, and his pack will follow him. Sam and his pack will stay in Forks.

I had another point and I forgot what it was. I'll think of it while I'm sleeping and post again tomorrow!
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Re: Explorations

Post by Tornado »

Alphie wrote:1. He IS immature! He's 16-17 years old. I know very few boys that age who are decent enough to fully apologize and own up to their mistakes. I think because we do like Jacob and want him to be a "hero" that we expect him to behave like one and own his mistakes. I think that part of the way Stephenie wrote him was true to him being a young teen who just doesn't know better. It's not an excuse, and it doesn't make it right, but it is the fact.
I agree, but I still know some kids that age who wouldn't have gone that far (particularly in forcing himself on Bella the first time he kisses her). Certainly some of his behaviour is explainable by this fact, and is understandable, but as I said earlier, did she have to make him quite so bad? Not to mention that, both Bella and SM continually say how good Jacob is. And he certainly is early on. But then his behaviour becomes so atrocious that he honestly behaves like little more than a spoiled brat. I think the excuse of his age only goes so far.
Alphie wrote:2. Edward behaves just as poorly in these books. I've seen just as many "Edward is a control freak" posts as I have seen "Jacob is immature" type posts. Again, one of the things I like about the series is that, regardless of how Bella seems them, neither one of her choices is perfect. Both male characters are flawed and damaged. We can't lay all the blame for everything at Jacob's feet.
Absolutely. The difference for me was always this: Edward acknowledges his mistakes and apologises. We have enough examples of him apologising for his bad behaviour for me to believe that he would have apologised for his behaviour over the pregnancy, even though we didn't witness it.
Now, is his ability to admit he was wrong because he is a lot more mature than Jacob? Possibly. But we do have to remember that, as far as a lot of emotional development goes, Edward is only 17 himself. Yes, he has had longer to gain maturity in a different way, but he is still frozen to an extent, so to what do we ascribe his ability to admit he is wrong, as he frequently does? Is it because he has a better character than Jacob? Perhaps. Is it because of his low self esteem? Possibly. Perhaps it is down to a century of experience, but that is difficult to prove, especially when you take his frozen nature into account.
Alphie wrote:Did Edward ever fully apologize to Jacob or Bella for the control he forced on Bella's life - or, like Jacob, did he always assume that his way was the better way? Sure, he did eventually allow Bella some freedom to go visit Jacob in Eclipse, but that was only because he would rather she go safely than sneak out.
I don't think Edward assumed his way was better. SM suggests on her website that the reason he stopped trying to keep Bella away from Jake was at least partly from the thought that maybe Jacob was better for her than he was. Again, this takes a good bit of maturity, especially considering what a control freak he is. So he didn't assume he was right for Bella, and stepped aside, yes, to make sure she didn't get hurt, but also to allow her the freedom (as much as possible, anyway) to make an informed decision.

And there is a third character you forgot to mention, and that is Bella herself. In a way, she is the oldest of the three of them, and her behaviour and treatment of both of them was certainly questionable on quite a few occasions. I can't recall her ever apologising to either of them for anything, either.
Alphie wrote:Jacob's line about how they can both be happy with the person they have in their life is way premature and again reflects how immature and young he is. I don't believe for one second that Nessie and Jake's life will be an easy slide into romance and love where they live happily ever after. Stephenie left BD on a cliff hanger for me. Sure, Bella's story is wrapped up, but it seemed pretty clear to me that she set up the love triangle of Nahuel/Nessie/Jacob. And consider that as she grows up Nessie will soon understand that Jacob once was in love with Bella to the point where he wanted Bella to abort Nessie! Jacob might not have had to apologize and atone fully in Breaking Dawn, but I don't think Nessie will just fall into his loving arms without some explanation. He will have to own up to that behavior at some point. And his maturity will develop as he leads his pack... which will eventually have to leave Forks when the Cullens do. Even if Jacob's motives behind telling Charlie were selfish, it only bought him a short amount of time. Bella, Edward, and Nessie won't be able to stay in Forks much longer. Nessie is growing too quickly. And the whole Cullen family can only stay a few more years, tops, before the people in Forks grow suspicious. Jacob will go where ever Nessie goes, and his pack will follow him. Sam and his pack will stay in Forks.
Yes that's pretty much where I am with the story too. I do wonder what will happen when they all have to leave, and what will happen with the Nessie situation. It would be interesting to see Jacob develop beyond the immature teen he currently is.
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corona
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Re: Explorations

Post by corona »

Alphie wrote:He IS immature! He's 16-17 years old. I know very few boys that age who are decent enough to fully apologize and own up to their mistakes. I think because we do like Jacob and want him to be a "hero" that we expect him to behave like one and own his mistakes. I think that part of the way Stephenie wrote him was true to him being a young teen who just doesn't know better. It's not an excuse, and it doesn't make it right, but it is the fact.
You are right, I suppose much of my frustration was that I actually did want Jacob to step up to the plate. I didn't like him, but I wanted to like him, and I thought his moment was coming up, but it came and went. Possibly the most aggravating thing about him was his constant brinkmanship with everyone else, not understanding that every single person around him was having to compensate and restrain themselves.

I think a lot depends, though, on whether or not you actually believe there will be more stories in the TW world. If you do, then it becomes much easier to imagine there might be consequences for certain actions or opportunities for growth. Personally, I got the feeling that SM was trying to wrap up everything that she could, so I got the impression of finality, which freezes everyone in time, not just the vamps. I think the thing that tipped me over to that conclusion was how strong she portrayed Nessie's connection to Jacob, even over her own father. That is basically giving away the end to their story. Why do that unless you're not sure you will ever be writing their story?

You see a big part of my problem? I can't picture those additional stories, so Jacob always remains the same to me. It isn't that I don't have an imagination, it's because I am interpreting BD as the final word in the TW universe. I hope I am wrong. Funny, though, isn't it? Out of all of the characters in the book, Jacob is the prime candidate for growth, but I can't picture it. There is some stubbornness on my part, but I'm just not willing anymore to put any effort into understanding him.

If there are additional stories, then Nessie would likely learn that both her father and Jacob had wanted her aborted, but I wonder if it will ever come out that Jacob had wanted to "abort" her after she had already been born, and that she is alive by the grace of the imprinting? For that matter, I think she would actually have a more difficult time dealing with the fact that Jacob loved her mother, but never really loved her, at least not in the conventional way. Jacob fell in love with her mother. Jacob imprinted on Nessie. How in the world would someone deal with that?

Come to think of it, Jacob was even against conceiving her. So he was anti-Nessie before, during, and momentarily after her birth.

I think you are right, there is not much point to writing their story unless there is romantic conflict. The only way for Nahuel to enter the picture, though, is if Nessie has some kind of meltdown with Jacob. Perhaps these kinds of revelations combined with a feeling of entrapment would do. Maybe her book cover would have a picture of breaking chains, a rebellion against the choices that have seemingly been taken from her?

I'm with Tornado on Edward. Edward did make the biggest mistake, I'll admit that. He does apologize often though, so where I don't see it directly from him I am willing to fill in the gaps. Jacob, not so much, most of his apologies were to Bella for his unwarranted lashing out, and they often had a calculated feel to them. Where Edward aggravated me the most was when he was dismissive of human emotion. I may be Team Edward, but I'm always on Team Human, I have to be.
"It will take an amazing amount of control,” she mused. “More even than Carlisle has. He may be just strong enough…the only thing he’s not strong enough to do is stay away from her. That’s a lost cause.”

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