Being the Backup Plan: Just Right or Just Wrong?
I decided to take a break from writing one Friday night. I closed my laptop, and turned on my T.V. I flipped through the channels, and I saw Just Wright coming on for the umpteenth time. I had seen it about three times over the years, but since it was at the beginning and nothing else was on, I went ahead and left it on. I got up, made my requisite bowl of popcorn, sat down, and was quickly reminded of what irritated me about the film. It is a concept that some learn to accept and live “happily” with, and others, like me, just feel that it is out of the question—being someone’s backup plan/Plan B.
If anyone is not familiar with Just Wright, it is a “feel good” romantic comedy about Leslie Wright, a physical therapist who loves her hometown basketball team, her gold digging home girl, Morgan, whose sole purpose is to find an athlete to take care of her, and Scott McKnight, a top basketball player in Leslie’s hometown. Leslie meets Scott in a chance encounter at a gas station. There we see that they have things in common (Ha! In “Common”), and he invites her to his birthday party. Leslie brings Morgan to the party, and Scott immediately takes interest in Morgan. They began dating, got engaged, but when Scott got injured during a basketball game, Morgan left him. Leslie became his physical therapist, and they ended up falling for each other. Once Leslie rehabilitated Scott, and he was okay to play again, Morgan came back. Scott then dropped Leslie for Morgan. After being with Morgan again, Scott then realized that he wanted Leslie.
Although Scott and Leslie got married, and she landed her dream job because of her work with Scott, look at all the Maury Povich BS that had to take place in order to get there. Let’s dissect this. Scott met Leslie first, and didn’t have any romantic interest in her. He then met Morgan through Leslie, and wanted to date her right off the bat. You mean to tell me, you would be okay with knowing that your boyfriend or husband is more attracted to your friend than he is to you? I’ll wait… No, I won’t. Let’s move on.
Let’s say you are not as anal about the attraction thing. Cool. Morgan leaves. He then falls for Leslie, which was clearly a better fit based off of chemistry, interests, and authenticity. As SOON, as Scott was able to play, here comes Morgan traipsing back in. He drops Leslie to be back with what was clearly a gold digger. Even after being with Leslie, feeling the major positive, difference from being with Morgan, and forming a genuine connection, he had no qualms about leaving her high and dry. He was back with Morgan and saw it wasn’t what he wanted after all, and wanted Leslie back. If she wasn’t a backup plan before, she most certainly became one at that point. For one, he had Morgan before and already knew what he was in for, yet still chose her over Leslie. If choosing Morgan over and over again, does not show who his first choice was or what his Plan A was, then I don’t know what does.
The film came to a close on a high note, but I’m one of those people who thinks about what happened to the characters after the tape stopped rolling. How is daily life for them? Some may think that they “lived happily ever after,” but there were a lot of moving pieces to this. I can imagine it being very unsettling for the person who serves as the alternate. Even if you are not a person who dwells much on the past, I’m sure you will always have that thought that your significant other settled for you, tucked in the back of your mind. Even more unsettling on a different level was knowing that Scott was really attracted to Morgan, and with Morgan’s level of moral fortitude not being all that high; whose to say he wouldn’t choose her a third time? I'm sure everyone has their own opinions about the variables that render someone a Plan B, and there may even be a thin line between a backup plan, and just someone having an epiphany about what they really want. However, the idea of being someone’s second choice, or worse, last resort just is not a good feeling and is not advised. Although it was a cute little movie, I would not recommend that storyline be used as an example for you to allow someone to choose you last.