He can be seen as an arrogant and intimidating person to many. To contribute to his arrogance, Tom is cheating on his wife and has an affair with Myrtle Wilson, a woman he meets on a train, and describes her husband George as “so dumb he doesn’t know he’s alive (30). Tom’s affair is out in the open for practically everyone in the world to know, which shows that he does not care that he is cheating, and that he is allowed to have his fun. As expected, he is hypocritically outraged and disconcerted when he learns of Daisy’s “scandalous” affair with “Mr..
Nobody from Nowhere,”‘ and wants to be “[counted] out” of the cheating and affair, which is probably one of the most hypocritical things that Tom could ever say (137). This is where he realizes that he cannot accept the taste of his own medicine, as well as his ‘transition from libertine to prig [being] so complete” (137). He describes Daisy’s lover in a disrespectful way and adds to it, inferring that Gatsby still is of a lower social status than he is. His strength, his intimidating nature, and his disregard of anyone else but himself, gets him nowhere and he is faced with a loss of composure.
In the same way as Tom, Nick can appear to have a fluctuating transition to suit his patent quality of bluntness. Nick is the narrator of the Tory and readers have to be able to assume that he will remain truthful throughout the entire duration of the story. Evidently, he is quickly able to justify his acts of bias, because one of his “cardinal virtues” is that he is “one of the few honest people that [he has] ever known” (64). This questions his person because every narrator has to judge, no matter what or how honest they claim to be.
As a Story teller, one has to take a side, have some opinion on a situation just like anyone else, and Nick does not fail to do so. Readers can recognize him separately as “Nick the narrator” as well as “Nick the heartache’. The narrator version of Nick does not consider Daisy, Tom, and Jordan decent people, but the character version goes along with and participates in their society, choosing to overlook their flaws to fit in and spare their “friendships”. By withholding his opinion, he becomes an unreliable narrator that readers can no longer trust.
His strength, his sense of judgment, is also turned into a weakness when he makes a list of Gatsby party goers, “a better impression than Chic] generalities of those who accepted Gatsby hospitality and paid him the subtle tribute of knowing thing whatever about him” (65). This is said in a dry and aggravated tone, allowing his irritation with the guests to shine through; he is judging them. Nick even acknowledges that his going about without criticizing anyone ultimately “has a limit,” similar to Gatsby after his long awaited dream comes true (6).
The slim chance of Gatsby dream of being with Daisy coming true is enough for him to remain hopeful, his strength and “extraordinary gift” (6). After witnessing the pairs first time seeing each other again, Nick leaves unnoticed and unmissed after being “forgotten” by the two, feeling that Gatsby didn’t know [him then] at all” (101 Gatsby and Daisy are so entranced by each other and their reunion that they fail to see anything else besides their love.
One would think that Gatsby should be feeling ecstatic that after five years his dream is finally coming true, but he had tampered too much with the idea of Daisy, his perfect woman. Nobody could ever live up to his high and impractical expectations. “doubt had occurred to him,” allowing readers to begin to realize that “Daisy tumbled short of his dreams – not through her own fault but because of the colossal vitality of his illusion… Beyond everything. He had thrown himself into it… Adding it all the time” (101).
Gatsby “green light,” his “orgiastic future… [that] recedes” was his dream, being with Daisy (189). Daisy’s true to life persona is being sent farther and farther away as he obsesses over it more and more. Gatsby “gift’ is able to bring the best and at times, worst out of him (6). Clearly, Tom’s intimidating and arrogant appearance can be quickly turned around in a short second, Nick’s sense of judgment is apparently allowed to vary because of his being honest, and Gatsby special sense of hope could eve him forward only to a certain extent.
The Minneapolis Sunday Tribune review referring to F. Scott Fitzgerald The Great Gatsby as an “ironical panorama of the weakness of the strong and the strength of the weak,” clearly conveys the opposite and out of place factors of strength and weakness through the characters of Tom when handling his affair and Nick’s sense of judgment, in addition to Gatsby sense of hope. Some would find it daunting to think that their personal strength can ultimately be resisted, whereas a weakness can be used to the same person’s advantage.