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Discussion » Questions » Television and Movies » A question for fans of the movie "The Notebook" - - -

A question for fans of the movie "The Notebook" - - -

I came across this essay and the author pretty much sums up my thoughts, too.

Do you think the author has a point? I do.

Oh, by the way -- I'm completely biased in my opinion, so I know I'm right, too! Ha!

I saw the movie only once. I liked it a LOT, too. But I remember I had the same type of thoughts as expressed in the essay. Maybe not quite so strongly, though.

Dear the 2004 Romantic Drama The Notebook,

I know this seems like it might be coming a little late, but as they say - better late than never! After all, Allie waited seven years for Noah to come find her, never realizing that he had attempted to write her every day for a year but her mother intercepted all of the letters before they reached her. And when Allie and Noah finally did reunite after years and years of being apart, they discovered their passion for one another had not died at all. I've taken this to heart and decided that it's never too late to tell someone how you truly feel. So let me just say this...

F*** y**, The Notebook. Why'd you have to do that to poor Lon?
You might be somewhat taken aback by this, so let me refresh your memory - after Noah and Allie break up, the two eventually find themselves involved in World War II (albeit, not together or anything). While tending to wounded soldiers, Allie meets a handsome young lawyer named Lon Hammond Jr., and the two eventually get engaged with the intent to marry. All the while, Noah continues to pine for Allie, unaware that his letters never reached her. And even after seeing Lon and Allie share a kiss from a distance, his resolve to get back Allie is only strengthened.

Here's the thing about Lon: he's what's known as "the baxter." In romantic films and books, "the baxter" is the protagonist's crummy/dull/jerk significant other, whom they must break up with to follow the path of romantic destiny with their true love. They're a plot point, an obstacle to be overcome - nothing more than a speed bump on the road to love. Think mom's new boyfriend Fletcher in Liar Liar, or Walter in Sleepless in Seattle, or James Marsden in Enchanted.

...or James Marsden in X-Men.

...or James Marsden in Superman Returns.


See the pattern here? James Marsden is constantly getting Baxter-ed. But you, The Notebook, took things too far. James Marsden doesn't deserve to be Baxter-ed this consistently - he's usually handsomer than the leading men....


He's usually more responsible and grounded than them too...










...and he's just overall BETTER than the leading men the women he loves ultimately wind up with. And while the other films presented decent enough reasons why he was doomed to Baxterdom (he's usually something of a stick in the mud, or in the case of Enchanted, a near-braindead thoughtless cartoon man come to life through unnatural magic), there's basically no excuse for his treatment in The Notebook.

Lon is handsome, loving, sweet, funny, charming - and dedicated. He loves Allie truly and completely, and he dedicates himself entirely to her. There's no sense he doesn't value her, or treats her with any level of disrespect, or anything untoward that would justify her not only leaving him, but abandoning him unannounced to go hook up with her hobo-bearded ex for several days while poor Lon is left in the lurch.


The dude already has to deal with being named "Lon" - couldn't Allie at least do him the small mercy of a phone call?

And hell - when Lon finds out his fiance has been hooking up with Hobo Ryan Gosling, he remains kind and respectful and loving. He doesn't immediately break up or get mad at her or anything - he tells her that he loves her and wants her to himself, but realizes that she's still in love with someone else, so the mature thing would be to let her go gracefully and without a bunch of drama.

If you're going to Baxter this poor guy, at least make him a jerk or something so we don't have to feel SO BAD for him. Lon winds up being the only mature, level-headed person in the film - he's kind to a fault, wise beyond his years, and an upstanding character in general.

You did Lon wrong, The Notebook.

Just thought you should know.

An Open Letter To


Posted - November 10, 2018


  • 22239
    ive never seen the nnovie or read the book
      November 10, 2018 4:19 PM MST

  • 11475
    That's why I pointed out the question to fans of the movie. The question and essay won't make sense without seeing the movie. But, if you do see the movie soon, you can come back and answer again! Ha!
    I'm just joking around with you, Pearl!
    Actually, now that you mentioned it, I forgot about the book. I've not read it, either.

    This post was edited by WelbyQuentin at November 10, 2018 5:19 PM MST
      November 10, 2018 4:24 PM MST

  • Not a fan of the  I hated all the ways poor Noah was blocked from being with the woman he loved. And for me Lon was just boring, yep a good looking Baxter:(  Sorry but I will take Ryan Gosling any day instead of James Marsden, who is yes too pretty for my taste haha.  HATED the ending by the way:( This post was edited by Benedict Arnold at November 10, 2018 7:24 PM MST
      November 10, 2018 7:00 PM MST

  • 4376
    Just saw First Man a few days ago. Gosling was excellent as Neil Armstrong.
      November 10, 2018 7:20 PM MST

  • 11475
    I bet he is. I like him in anything I've seen him in, not that I've seen him that much, I guess.
      November 10, 2018 7:31 PM MST

  • 11475
    "Boring," how dare you!

    In all honesty, I'd take either Gosling or Marsden! Ha! Both are good-looking to me. (The author of that essay goes too far about Marsden's looks, though I do find Marsden really handsome.)

    I only saw the movie once and I can't remember the exact ending --

    PLOT SPOILER!!!!!!!!! "THE NOTEBOOK"!!!!!!!!!!!
    I remember most the ending scenes with the young main woman as an older woman, portrayed by Gena Rowlands. Rowlands was wondrous in that role -- in what seemed to be a mushy love story to me up to that point, Rowlands entered and suddenly everything that led up to her an an older woman --  it all struck home as "real."
    I don't know if that made sense. My brain is shutting down.
      November 10, 2018 7:30 PM MST

  • Thanks for reminding me my boyfriend wants to see that film;)
      November 10, 2018 7:22 PM MST

  • 11475
    It'll be interesting to see what he thinks.

    And you know what else hit me just now? With how my brain sometimes goes overboard into unrealistic negativity, what you probably see as "boring" in 'Lon,' I think I was drawn to that probable same personality as stable and secure. I can see how 'Lon' might come across as boring, yes. But I'm drawn to the same characteristics but don't see them as boring.
    What am I trying to say? -- Basically, I think Lon's a really nice guy and deserved better. Nice guys truly finish last.
      November 10, 2018 7:37 PM MST

  • My boyfriend is a fan of Neil Armstrong so I know he will want to see it;)  I agree Lon seemed the more stable, reliable sort of man that would take care to make a girl happy;)  Indeed Marsden is the more classic kind of good looking, handsome for sure.  But at times we ladies like a rougher looking man, that seems more exciting to us lol ;)  However I did enjoy James Garner, such a great actor and Gena Rowlands was wonderful!
      November 10, 2018 7:56 PM MST

  • 11475
    OH! I was thinking your boyfriend wanted to see "The Notebook."
    I told you my brain is shutting down.

    You make good points. 
    And the fact we're both discussing the two guys shows that they're interesting characters there in that story.

    Thanks for answering my question.
      November 10, 2018 8:07 PM MST

  • Lol;)  No boyfriend wouldn't like the notebook, he hates sad endings. You are right those were interesting characters for sure! Thank you for bringing up an interesting discussion. I haven't thought about the notebook in years;)
      November 10, 2018 9:46 PM MST

  • 11475
    Hey, you're welcome, Cinders717. I'm glad you enjoyed the discussion. I have to.

    I got a kick out of, completely by chance, reading that essay I posted. It was the first time I had ever "read/talked with someone" about a similar reaction to James Marsden's character in the movie. It's been fun conversing about it some more.
      November 11, 2018 12:27 PM MST

  • Indeed I enjoyed our conversation too;
      November 11, 2018 1:08 PM MST