By Monica Giulianna (The Muse Momo)
Paper Towns, John Green’s most recent novel-turned-movie, has a story that I’ve had my eye on for quite some time. Let’s face it, after the massive media boom last summer when The Fault in Our Stars was released, Green’s popularity could go nowhere but up. With the Looking for Alaska adaptation in the works, and Paper Towns coming out this week, I couldn’t help but to take upon myself to analyze the story behind Quentin and his mysterious neighbor; Margo Roth-Spiegelman, before they hit the big screen in theaters worldwide.
Here’s what you need to know; Quentin is your typical, Average Joe kind of guy, the one who always walks on the sidewalk, never colors outside the lines, you get the idea. Margo is the classic class badass, she’s constantly running off to go on some crazy adventure, only to come back and leave everyone speechless.
Now, what could possibly bind these two completely opposite souls to one another? That’s simple, death. You see, back when they were children, mini Q and mini Margo went out on a little play-date, only to find a man almost in his 40’s, in a suit, leaning against a tree after committing suicide in a public park.
For anyone who hasn’t read it, I promise you, that was not a spoiler. That happens within the first few pages of the book and it’s basically the only part that mini Q, mini Margo, and (for obvious reasons) Robert Joyner (R.I.P.) play in the entire story. Nevertheless, this is the moment that shapes who they will be for the rest of their lives.
The thing about seeing a dead person in front of you, is that it can really determine who you will potentially become. Subconsciously, you feel that urge to find a way to cope with what you saw and your mind adjusts accordingly. Their minds had very different ways to cope and it’s evident from the start. Margo, from the moment they found Joyner, felt an urge to figure out what happened, Quentin just needed to escape. As long as he could stay away, Q would adjust, whereas Margo needed to understand in order to have some closure.
Now, how is it that exactly nine years later, their roles are reversed and Q feels a need to understand, while Margo just wants to escape? Well, maybe Quentin wasn’t such a “well-adapted” kid as he thought, and they were both still trying to cope with Joyner’s death. He has finally realized that no matter how much he plans out everything and tries to forget the past, he has to face it eventually. Margo has done enough facing, and she has finally understand that no matter how much she tries to find some answers and compensate for what she saw, the outcome is still the same, so she has to move on. Their actions are reversed because of their bond and because they balance each other out. Their behavior is both poetically and mathematically perfect.
Of course, this is just one person’s thoughts, my own, but I would love to know if anyone out there agrees or disagrees with my theory. Let me know in the comments section below, like and share and get lost, get found in a theater near you!