Indy's Relationships with Women Part II

By S.L. Nobrega (a.k.a Canyon)

"I could have been your greatest adventure!"

Marion Ravenwood

First off, I would like to explore the early relationship between Indy and Marion. Not much is known about their relationship, which took place in the 1920’s, and so I come across the following conclusion. I believe that when Abner was teaching, he introduced his daughter to Indy and things progressed from there and I imagine that Marion fell for Indy in a big way. At the time, Marion would have only been about fifteen or sixteen years old and would have been very much taken by the handsome archaeologist, a man who by the time he had reached his late twenties, would have extensive experience of life. I think it’s fair to say that Marion not only had a crush on Indy, but she was also falling in love with him. By this time, Indy had spent many years travelling abroad, and compared to boys of Marion’s age, she would probably view Indy as mature and experienced. It seems to me that Indy would, in turn, be attracted to Marion because of her youth and beauty, and in my honest opinion, I feel that Indy and Marion are very well suited to each other, Marion almost being Indy’s equal.

One can only imagine that Indy and Marion were involved on an intimate level and I would imagine that Abner found out about their relationship. When he found out that one of his students and his daughter were involved with one another, he told Indy not to go near Marion again and it is likely that Indy left her without saying goodbye. As I have stated before, I believe that young women falling for older men is very common. Try to imagine yourself in the place of a younger Marion. Are you going to be interested in someone your own age, someone who is generally immature, or are you going to fall for someone like Indy, a man who has traveled the world and has already done a great deal with his life?

Ten years later...

Marion suddenly brought her fist up and struck him on the jaw.

Indy was stunned by the blow and his eyes flashed with anger.

“I never meant to hurt you.”

“I was a child, I was in love. It was wrong and you knew it!”

“You knew what you were doing.”

I have to admit, that line gets me every time. As much as I love Indy’s character, I always feel like replying to that comment with something along the lines of: "It takes two to tango", meaning that he was as much responsible for their affair as she was. So, after ten years, Marion is not too pleased to see Indy, and in some ways, I guess I can’t say I blame her, but then again people are known to make mistakes in relationships. As I remember, there was going to be a scene in Raiders in the Raven Bar. Just as Indy is about to leave, Marion asks him to kiss her. Marion says something along the lines of “Because from now on, I’m calling the shots in this relationship.” It seems to be that by the time Indy leaves, Marion is now the one in control.

So, despite Marion’s anger toward Indy for returning after all this time, how do Indy and Marion fall in love again? One of my favourite parts from Raiders is the wonderful scene that takes place on Sallah’s balcony. The children’s pet monkey jumps onto Marion’s shoulder and Indy glances over at her, and to me, its almost like Indy wants to say something to Marion, and it’s almost as if a private moment exists between them. And, let’s not forget that fantastic smile Indy gives Marion. That smile alone is enough to make any girls heart beat faster! Ahem, anyway, I feel that Marion forgives Indy for leaving all of those years ago and she begins to see that despite his flaws, Indy is not necessarily a bad person, and is not only someone who is very romantic, but he is also someone who cares a great deal about her. Every time I see the scene where Indy believes that Marion is dead, a great feeling of sadness washes over me, and the scene in which Indy is absolutely devastated is also heartbreaking to watch, even though we all know that Marion is very much alive.

One of my favourite scenes from Raiders is the scene that takes place between Indy and Marion on the Bantu Wind. It seems that over the past few days, Indy and Marion have not had a proper chance to resume their relationship on a romantic level. I absolutely adore this scene, because it is the first proper love scene between these two characters. I think by this time, Marion feels that she still has a lot of old feelings for Indy and I think that they both still remember their feelings with regards to one another from years ago. I also love this scene because Marion is doing her very best to tend to Indy’s injuries but he’s having none of it, and tells her: "Please, I don’t need a nurse. I just want to sleep."

Believe it or not, the next-to-the-last scene in Raiders where Indy and Marion walk down the steps of the government office in Washington almost didn’t happen. Marcia Lucas was one to change Lucas and Spielberg’s minds after seeing the film, as originally the scenes at the end were just going to be of the Ark being wheeled away. Luckily, we have this wonderful scene between Indy and his love, Marion and I get the feeling that despite Indy’s habit of having many relationships with women, he and Marion will have a very interesting future relationship.

Willie Scott

I find the relationship between Indiana Jones and Willie Scott one of fascination, because it almost seems that these two are completely opposite to each other and at times, their personalities clash. Willie, a nightclub singer first meets Indy in a club, namely Club Obi Wan. At first, she dislikes the archaeologist and gets inadvertently caught up in an exchange between Indy and the crime lord, Lao Che. In the first ten minutes of Indy and Willie meeting, she is prodded with a carving fork, loses a diamond, is shot at, is made to jump out of a window and falls through several canopies, and ends up falling through a car roof! By the time that she boards the airplane with Indy and Short Round, needless to say, she is not too happy, and I love the banter that takes place between her and Indy.

It is clear from the times that we see Willie in a jungle setting, her reaction is that she is not in her usual environment and we learn that she was settled, living in Shanghai and "hates being outside." For those of you who have read the paperback novelisation of Temple of Doom, there is a great scene, which takes place just before the campfire scene, where Willie is bathing in a nearby stream and is thinking about Indy. Indy goes over to her to see how she is, and what takes place is an interesting conversation between the both of them. The interesting thing about this part is that, by this time, they really like each other but neither is prepared to admit it at this stage.

Indy: "Hey, Willie -- I think you better get out now."

Willie: “Stark naked? You wish... If you're trying to seduce me, Dr. Jones, this is a very primitive approach.”

Indy: “Me seduce you? Honey, you're the one who took your clothes off. (shrugging) I just came over to remind you that you never know what else might be in the water.”

Willie: “Somehow I feel safer in here.”

Indy, Willie and Short Round reach Pankot Palace, and later that evening, the tension between Indy and Willie breaks and a love exchange takes place between them. So the question is, what happened between these two people since the first time they met? As I have said before, on this adventure Willie is completely out of her environment and if you take people out of what they are used to, it tends to make people feel comfortable. At first, Willie seems very reluctant to be involved and indeed did not regard Indy as a love interest, but by the end of this adventure, Willie almost seems like a different person and I think that this is due to the fact that both she and Indy were thrown together on an adventure and had no choice but to work together. A scene, which I think is interesting, is the part just after our heroes witness the sacrifice. Indy informs Willie and Short Round that he is going down into the cavern to get the Sankara Stones. Willie is upset and replies with:

“You’re gonna get killed chasing after your damn fortune and glory!”

Indy turns and smiles.

“Maybe, but not today” he replies.

Indy kisses Willie, and just after if you look at the expression on Willie’s face, she seems to have a look, which indicates that at this stage, she cares deeply about Indy. To me, that look is also one of a woman who is seriously beginning to fall for someone. I am more than aware that Willie is not exactly the favourite out of the three Indy girls, which is a shame because she really comes through in the end of this adventure, and I feel that she has the potential to be an interesting character. Another favourite of my scenes is near the end of the film, just after all of the children run into the village. Indy and Willie begin another banter, and Willie tells Indy that she doesn’t wish to go on any more adventures with him, but no doubt changes her mind once he kisses her. As I have said before I am well aware that Willie Scott is not a big favourite amongst Indy fans, but I feel that she is an interesting character nonetheless.

Dr. Elsa Schneider

Although Elsa betrayed Indy, this does not mean that I don’t find her character interesting. I feel that out of the three Indy ladies, Elsa is the most complex. One of the most interesting things about this scene is the fact that Indy and Elsa hit it off almost immediately, the both of them shamelessly flirting with each other.

Indy: "Fraulein, will you permit me?"

Elsa: "I usually don't."

Indy: "I usually don't either."

Elsa: "In that case, I permit you."

Indy: "It would make me very happy."

Elsa: "But I’m already sad. By tomorrow it will have faded."

Indy: "Tomorrow I'll steal you another..."

I believe that Elsa is attracted to Indy because, c’mon girls, lets face it, Indy is an extremely handsome man! Any Indy fan will know that Elsa betrays Indy later, on this adventure and I believe that even though Elsa planned to use Indy for her own purposes, I do believe that she was genuinely attracted to the rugged adventurer. What woman wouldn’t be? With regard to Indy’s attraction to Elsa, Indy generally tends to fall pretty easily for women, especially beautiful women. As I have said before, Indy is a romantic. He is not only in a time (the 1930’s) when romance was pretty much alive, he is also someone who loves the company of women, and tends to get into situations whereby women become his partners, and most of the time, these women will end up being a lover. I remember the first time that I saw Last Crusade at the cinema, and needless to say, I was shocked when I realised that Elsa was, in fact, a bad ‘guy’. I imagine that the hurt and anger that Indy must have been feeling was pretty justified. But the question is, was Indy in love with Elsa? Personally, I think the answer to that is yes.

Indy strikes me as someone who not only falls in love with women easily, but he is also someone who tends to wear his heart on his sleeve. It would seem that Indy seems to be easily attracted to women and I think that when he is involved with a woman, he is 100 percent committed to that person. One of the things that I love about the time period that Indy’s is in is that it was an era in which things were very different to how they are now. One thing that would have been interesting to see in the trilogy would have been a scene whereby Indy is at a dinner party and how he interacts with women on a social level and I believe this has been done before in some of the comics/graphic novels that I have read.

When Part I of this article was published online, I started a thread on one of the popular Indy message boards and had a wonderful reply from none other than Monkey, one of the best fan fiction writers out there. His words were “Indy is the consummate romantic hero” and ”Romance is a vital part of Indy’s world.” Well I have to say, I thoroughly agree with these statements, as I believe that they are very true. With regard to Indy’s feelings relating to Elsa during the second half of this adventure, I absolutely love the scene whereby Elsa tells Indy: ”I can’t forget how wonderful it was”, as Henry Sr. replies with ”Yes, it was rather wonderful.” It’s hilarious because Henry genuinely thinks that Elsa is talking to him and the look that Indy gives his father is priceless. It’s clear from the look on Indy’s face that Elsa’s kiss was not entirely welcome and in the scene involving Indy getting the book back from Elsa in Berlin, the exchange that takes place between them is fraught with emotion. It feels that, in some ways they still care for each other, but in other ways it is almost like they hate each other.

I do not think that Elsa is evil. I believe that she was caught up in a situation whereby, similar to Henry Sr., she became obsessed with the Grail and would not let anything stand in the way of her goal. Much can be said about Henry Sr.’s comment to Indy after they escape from the Grail Temple. “Elsa never really believed in the Grail. She thought she found a prize.” I feel that in some ways, Indy blamed himself for Elsa’s death. I feel that given the circumstances, Indy did his best to save her and I can’t help but think that, if Elsa had not been wearing those gloves, she may have lived.

Generally, I think that Indy’s relationship with Elsa out of the three is the most complicated in that she not only betrays Indy, but his father also. Despite this, I think that by the end of this adventure, Indy forgave Elsa and I think he realises that she was not evil, but just someone who was obsessed with obtaining the Grail.