Author Topic: How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK  (Read 6249 times)

Offline Kd5000

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How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK
« on: December 16, 2006, 11:16:39 pm »
with Ennis. She was more liberated and certainly more economically independent then Alma. Do you think she would have confronted Jack the very next day and not waited around bitting her nails, hedging her options.   Maybe this topic has already been covered before, but I would still be interested in hearing what other Brokies  have to think.

Here's my thoughts. 

Most likely scenario
A) She would have had an explosive blow-up with him, telling him to get out right away and never come back.  Alll the while crying on the inside. 
or
B) She would have slowly come around to confronting Jack.  Jack, are you gay?  How long has this been going on.  How will we protect Bobby from this. Why didn't you tell me this before we got married, etc.
or
C) She would have called her mother the very next day, confided in her what she had seen, pleaded with her mom not to tell her dad.  Calculated what's in her best interest, asked Jack for a divorce not mentioning what she had witnessed.
or
D) Act like nothing has happened. She might start seeing another man on the side. They would have an open marriage where she and Jack would show up together but she would know not to expect any sexual relations with her husband. 


Offline Bucky

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Re: How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK
« Reply #1 on: December 17, 2006, 03:52:20 am »
I think Lureen probably suspected that Jack was not the macho type anyway and she had to almost force herself on Jack to have sex with him.  I am sure she wondered why Jack went up to Wyoming three or four times a year but his "buddy" never came to Texas.  Actually she said as much in the movie when Jack was looking for his blue parka.

Lureen knew that Jack was the butt of jokes among some of the people of Childress, Texas I think.  I know she over heard some man say to her father  "isn't that the pissant that used to ride the bulls."  Her father replied with a put down of Jack by saying "he used to try."  I really don't think Lureen would have been that surprised if she had seen Jack kissing Ennis.  I don't think Lureen would have fretted and grieved over it like Alma did but then Lureen was more sophiscated than Alma and probably knew more about the world than Alma.  I think she would tell Jack that it didn't surprise her because she had suspected that he was gay for some time.  What she would have done about it I couldn't guess but I think she would have stayed married to him for Bobby and the sake of appearing to have a normal family. 

Offline Faye92

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Re: How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK
« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2006, 08:17:54 pm »
That's a good question. I believe Lureen would have blown up about the entire scene but she would have kept it away from her parents to protect their reputation as well as she and Jack's. I don't believe she would have initiated a divorce though, even though she had the financial means to sustain and support a decent standard of living for she and her son. For some reason, I don't feel that she thought too highly of her father (hence the bashful smiling at the Thanksgiving dinner table scene when Jack put her father in his place) but that's just me. Perhaps out of inner spite, she would have stayed with him, keeping the secret between the two of them.

Lureen was such a trailblazer, I wouldn't even doubt that she would have encouraged Jack to pursue a relationship with Ennis protecting and supporting him, if you will, along the way. I need to watch the film again though and focus on her a bit to say for sure. She appeared extremely liberal to me.

Offline Katie77

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Re: How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK
« Reply #3 on: December 21, 2006, 09:17:13 pm »

D) Act like nothing has happened. She might start seeing another man on the side. They would have an open marriage where she and Jack would show up together but she would know not to expect any sexual relations with her husband. 



That one seems to me to be the more likely.....She became very business orientated, and I'm sure she would not have said anything, that may have been heard by her father.

It seems in the marriage, that she was the dominant partner anyway....and even in their first meeting she was the agressor.....She was a lot stronger willed and stronger nature than alma, and I think she probably guessed that there was something "different" about Jack.....I do think though that she loved him for who he was, and she was so proud of him when he stood up to her overbearing father, and I think if she had "caught Jack", it probably would have answered all her doubts about him, and I think too, that she would have carried on with her life the same way as she did.....

I some ways, when Ennis rang her after Jack died, I think a lot of her questions were answered, and a lot of her doubts confirmed.......
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Offline jpwagoneer1964

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Re: How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK
« Reply #4 on: December 21, 2006, 09:45:50 pm »
That one seems to me to be the more likely.....She became very business orientated, and I'm sure she would not have said anything, that may have been heard by her father.

It seems in the marriage, that she was the dominant partner anyway....and even in their first meeting she was the agressor.....She was a lot stronger willed and stronger nature than alma, and I think she probably guessed that there was something "different" about Jack.....I do think though that she loved him for who he was, and she was so proud of him when he stood up to her overbearing father, and I think if she had "caught Jack", it probably would have answered all her doubts about him, and I think too, that she would have carried on with her life the same way as she did.....

I some ways, when Ennis rang her after Jack died, I think a lot of her questions were answered, and a lot of her doubts confirmed.......
I'll go along with that.
Thank you Heath and Jake for showing us Ennis and Jack,  teaching us how much they loved one another.

Offline Brown Eyes

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Re: How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK
« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2006, 04:07:51 pm »
This is a great topic for a thread!  I think our best clue is her reaction during the phone call (as has been suggested above).

I also think her reaction might have been different at different points in time.  Maybe if she had found out when they were all really young, her response might have been more explosive.  By the time we see her at the dinner with Randall and LaShawn, we can see her cynicism has taken on a more subtle tone... not explosive but subtly bitter.  If she had somehow outright caught Jack with Ennis, it's truly hard to predict her reaction.  But, again, it would probably depend on the point of time in the relationship.

I think her response on the phone is somewhat encouraging.  She did Ennis an enormous kindness in telling him about the ashes (and encouraging him to go get them) and in telling him that brokeback was Jack's favorite place (although she may not understand quite the significance of this herself).
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Offline bbm_stitchbuffyfan

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Re: How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK
« Reply #6 on: December 31, 2006, 05:00:32 pm »
It is in my interpretation in the phone scene that she comes to understand the significance of Brokeback being Jack's favorite place. (That's one of the movie's most moving scenes for me.) I think the whole revelation here overwhelmed her, but I think she felt sympathetic for the both of them. I don't think Lureen would have been as hostile toward Jack as Alma was Ennis; I definitely think she would have kept it under wraps.
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Offline Katie77

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Re: How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK
« Reply #7 on: December 31, 2006, 10:07:45 pm »
I don't think Lureen would have been as hostile toward Jack as Alma was Ennis; I definitely think she would have kept it under wraps.

Do you really think, Alma was "hostile" towards Ennis?.....she kept her secret of knowing quite a long time, obviously bottled it all up, and it was probably the straw that broke the camel's back as far as any chance that her marriage would survive, but it seems like a few years had passed before she finaly went "hostile" after the thanksgiving dinner....I think then, she felt "safe" being able to say something, she was now remarried, pregnant and was not as afraid of the repercussions of bringing it out into the open, as she would have been if she was still living with Ennis......I think she was remarkable, that she held it in for as long as she did...

If you notice what was said, between her and Ennis before she started on the "Jack Nasty" thing....she said to Ennis he should get married again, and his reply was "Once bitten"...which was a smart arse way of saying that SHE was the one who had turned him off women.....letting him know that she knew about him and Jack, was her way of saying, "its not my fault, have a look at what you have been doing"......and "I know too, what you have been doing"......she was letting him know, that she had no guilts about their marriage failing, and she wasnt going to let him blame her....she didnt threaten him with exposure or anything, she just wanted him to know that she knew, finally........

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Offline BBM-Cat

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Re: How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK
« Reply #8 on: December 31, 2006, 11:23:24 pm »
This really is a great question to consider. I always imagine that if Lureen actually caught Jack and Ennis together, let's say, in an intimate or a compromising situation she would probably initially diffuse the situation by saying something clever and snippy like, 'Why Jack, I didn't know you were still riding bulls!' or, 'Jack, I just figured out why you never like to dance with your wife!'.  Then we'd probably hear 'An Angel went up in Flames' in the background...as she mutters to herself...asks for a divorce...storms off...Jack and Ennis comically trying to extricate themselves...LOL
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Offline Katie77

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Re: How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK
« Reply #9 on: January 01, 2007, 12:13:36 am »
This is a good subject of discussion, and now I guess there are another question:

1....What do you think Ennis and Jack would have done if they had looked up and saw Alma looking at them thru the door??????????


My thought is that Ennis would have ran for his life, and Jack would have followed, trying to settle him down, and telling him that "maybe this is best, now she knows, we can be together"..................
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Offline Penthesilea

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Re: How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK
« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2013, 10:03:50 am »
*bump* for Throwback Thursday :)


1....What do you think Ennis and Jack would have done if they had looked up and saw Alma looking at them thru the door??????????


Wow, what an explosive question. I barely dare to picture Ennis and Jack's reaction. :o
Thinking about this a little...

Offline CellarDweller

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Re: How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK
« Reply #11 on: September 12, 2013, 10:13:05 am »
1....What do you think Ennis and Jack would have done if they had looked up and saw Alma looking at them thru the door?


My thought is that Ennis would have ran for his life, and Jack would have followed, trying to settle him down, and telling him that "maybe this is best, now she knows, we can be together"..................

Good question Sue, but I don't agree with your answer.  I think that if they spotted Alma watching, given what we know about Ennis and how he behaves, I think he would've pushed Jack away, slugged him in the face, maybe kicked him when he was down, and then told Alma about how this "queer" force himself on to him.


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Offline x-man

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Re: How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK
« Reply #12 on: October 01, 2013, 11:47:06 am »
Good question Sue, but I don't agree with your answer.  I think that if they spotted Alma watching, given what we know about Ennis and how he behaves, I think he would've pushed Jack away, slugged him in the face, maybe kicked him when he was down, and then told Alma about how this "queer" force himself on to him.

This thread began by wondering about Laureen, then Alma, and now about the guys, specifically how they would have reacted had they realized at the reunion that they had been spotted by Alma.  This does give us more room to operate since both story and movie tell us more about them than  about the women.  Before that, however, I want to ask about Ennis' supposed "internalized homophobia" that has led so many people here to blame it for Ennis' failure to act.

When most of us think of homophobia, we think of people with the kind of behaviour that gives us the so-called "homophobic panic" used in the past to justify thugs in bashing cases, of bullying, bashings, killings, fag jokes, ex-gay conversion groups, religious right-wing crazies threatening us with hell and damnation, and the like.  Is there really any evidence to count Ennis amongst their number?

Ennis makes it clear, from the reunion on, that the reason he will not live with Jack is that he is afraid of getting killed.  This is why he tells the Earl and Rich story in the first place.  He expresses no homophobic attitude towards Rich and Earl, nor at anyplace does he say or do homophobic things.  Along with his fear of being killed by living with Jack, is his worry that any actions in public that make his feelings towards Jack obvious will lead to the same thing.  He has a pretty good case--discretion is the better part of valour, especially in that time and that place.  He does seem to have the idea that if they put themselves in situations where they could be found out, that no matter how careful they are, it is bound to happen.  At no point does he express any real homophobic behaviour in the sense that we usually use the word.  The worst we can accuse him of is being paranoid, but the Earl and Rich story and his perceived belief about how Jack died would justify any paranoia rather than undercut it.

Regarding paranoia, consider how Ennis changes.  In the tent the first night, Jack initiates the encounter, but Ennis becomes an enthusiastic partner very quickly.  On the second night, Ennis acts perhaps more bravely than he does at any other time when he chooses to get up from the fire and walk into the tent--he is not acting to counter any internalized homophobia, but rather his fears that what he is about to do might well lead to his death.  In succeeding days--as suggested in the movie by the Aguirre-with-binoculars scene, and in the story by Proulx's saying much about their having a lot of sex both in the tent and out in the open--Ennis takes a lot of chances.  Out in the open, when at any time a stranger could wander by?  I wouldn't have done it.

Fast forward to the reunion.  They embrace, but Ennis is the one (in the movie) who looks around slyly, and pulls Jack to a more private place and begins the kissing sequence.  This is a long way from "a one-shot thing we got going."  If there is any place where Ennis could be perceived as homophobic it is in the final argument when he says the "boys like you" line.  But at that point neither man is speaking entirely rationally, both are pushing the other's buttons to wound the other in misguided self-defense.  The final argument ranges from Jack's "a goddam bitch of an unsatisfactory situation" and "I wish I knew how to quit you" to Ennis "You been to Mexico, Jack Twist?  I know what they got in Mexico ( in the movie) for boys like you."  This is mild stuff indeed for a rampant homophobe. 

Ennis is certainly carrying around a lot of emotional baggage which will never allow him to step beyond it and chance death by being open about his love for Jack.  But we shouldn't sum up all that emotional baggage as "internalized homophobia."  That is inaccurate and discounts Ennis' character.  Ennis does not say much about his first 18 years, but they couldn't have been nice.  If we want to account for Ennis' fears and doubts, we have to look there, but we can't.  All we've got to go on is what the movie and story have to tell us.

Back to the reunion and how the men might have reacted if they had known they were caught out.  I suggest they did know, at least partially.  Here the difference between the movie and story are important.  In the movie the reunion scene happens outside, and Alma opens the door once.  In the story it happens inside in a darkened hallway outsiide the apartment, and Alma opens the door a second time.  We can assume that essentially the same behaviour between the two men happened in the hall as happened outside--the embrace, the passionate kissing, the conclusion with Ennis reluctantly pushing Jack away to calm things down, but both still consumed with sexual passion and frustration.  (Check out Jack's face when Ennis has to push him away and tell him to slow down.)  Alma first opens the door for a few seconds as the two are kissing.  She opens it again when they have stopped, but are still standing virtually on top of one another, still obviously hot and bothered.  When "The door opened again a few inches and Alma stood in the narrow light," Ennis sees this and realizes what she has seen.  "What could he say? 'Alma, this is Jack Twist, Jack, my wife Alma'...'Alma'  he said, 'Jack and me ain't seen each other in four years.'  As if it were a reason.  He was glad the light was dim on the landing but did not turn away from her."

Ennis is not good at verbal footwork.  I think he realized she was on to them, but he didn't much care.  It certainly didn't stop them from getting to the motel as soon as possible.  In the Thanksgiving scene when he responded with anger to Alma's "Jack Nasty" line, and he threatens to make Alma and Monroe "eat the fuckin floor" if she doesn't back off, there is no "I'm straight, he's queer" or verbal attacks on Jack or gays to bolster his straight credentials.  And no real denial of what she knows.  He just leaves in anger and goes out and gets drunk.  If you remember Queer as Folk, contrast Ennis reaction to that of Chris Hobbs when Justin confronts him in public about the hand job.  That did indeed almost lead to someone's death.

I am left with the belief that Ennis is the tragic figure in BBM, that the biggest mistake of his life was not settling down with Jack, but this was not because Ennis was homophobic, but a very screwed up man, probably because of his childhood--what else could it be?--never able to free himself, and because of it, five people's lives were harmed.
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Offline Monika

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Re: How would Lureen have reacted if she had caught JACK
« Reply #13 on: October 01, 2013, 01:29:07 pm »
I am left with the belief that Ennis is the tragic figure in BBM, that the biggest mistake of his life was not settling down with Jack, but this was not because Ennis was homophobic, but a very screwed up man, probably because of his childhood--what else could it be?--never able to free himself, and because of it, five people's lives were harmed.
You make a good case - thanks for the long post btw -it is a very interesting read!
...but I do think homophobia is part of it. As Annie Proulx herself writes, that the villain of the story is society. And Ennis and Jack are both a part of that society - a product of it, as we all - more or less - of our environment. I think, Ennis especially, has internalized the homophobia, and the mere thought of two guys setting up a ranch together...is simply a big no-no for him. And that´s the real tragedy of BBM, isn´t it? That they never even try to make a life together.