Remembering George Bailey
Sorry to keep beating a dead horse, but I'm still upset about George Bailey from It's a Wonderful Life. Here is a picture of him at the moment of truth when he decides to stay in Bedford Falls rather than leave for college. Yow!
Picture what would have happened if he'd made a better choice: After graduation, George returns to Bedford Falls to snap up Mary Hatch, who would have also finished college. They get married (as in the original version) leave town and have a wonderful, prosperous life. With his new-found wealth, George could build his widowed mother a new house or at least refurbish the old one; he could even help brother Harry get through college. Uncle Billy might not make out too well in this scenario, but some people just need to be let go before they ruin everything.
There must be some mysterious psychological reason for my antipathy toward this character. Maybe it's because I've known people who tossed away their advantages to embrace failure and frustration. I have a horror of making such mistakes.