Nick Slocombe

Here, we present our characterisation of the main character Nick Slocombe in Fiona Maazel's short story “Let's Go to the Videotape”. Characterisation can be divided into outer and inner.

Outer characterisation

There are no explicit descriptions of Nick’s outer characterisation in Maazel's “Let’s Go to the Videotape”, such as the way he looks. Since Gus is five years old (l. 3), we can assume that Nick is probably in his 30s or 40s. His wife died three years before the events of the story (l. 10).

Inner characterisation

Nick is obviously a man who is struggling to cope with grief. Since the loss of his wife, whom he seems to have loved, he has been struggling with feelings of grief and despair. Although the tragic accident was three years ago, Nick has found it difficult to recover, move on, and find joy in his life: “After she died, Nick had shied away from joining any support groups because they contrived relationships among people whose only shared interest was grief” (ll. 65-66). Thus, Nick distances himself from other people who have similar experiences to him, even though they might be just the people able to understand him and offer him support.

He does this because he does not wish to face his feelings of grief, and also because he feels he cannot share his experiences with anyone other than his wife: “After she was gone, he found himself unwilling to entrust his hurt to anyone but her” (ll. 66-67). This feeling is common among people who have lost a loved one and fear that they can never find happiness again or feel that moving on would represent a betrayal of the memory of their loved one. You could argue that he is clinging to the past.

However, this ...

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