‘Titanic’s’ Jack destined for death: could not have fit on door

Lilli Hime

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Everyone knows about the infamous scene in “Titanic” when Jack sinks tragically into the freezing waters of the Atlantic. Rose, while sitting idly by, survives safely aboard a door fit for two. Fans have picked the scene to the bone, configuring every way in which Jack could have fit onto that door, criticizing filmmakers and Rose alike.

Now, even Kate Winslet, the actress who played Rose, is chiming in on the dispute. The actress told Jimmy Kimmel she thought “‘[Jack] actually could have fitted on that bit of door.” Winslet’s statement caused an uproar of justification from fans whose critiques were finally being recognized by the perpetrator herself.

If my rhetoric and composition class has taught me anything, it’s subtext: reading between the lines. And a lot of fans miss or ignore what’s between these lines. Commitment issues. We’ve all had or at least seen those horrible relationships where we desperately search for an excuse to break up.

Well maybe for Rose that escape came in the form of an opportune iceberg. Maybe Rose was an opportunist who saw a way to avoid the awkward break up all together. Rewatch the scene, put it on mute, and imagine Rose saying this instead: “You’re just too clingy, Jack. I’m sorry but I think it’s best you let go of the idea of us … and the boat. Besides, there’s plenty of fish in the sea. Don’t be so blue.”

Jack may have been a player of his time, creating the move we know today as the hit-it-and-quit-it. I mean, it was only a matter of time before he figured out those devil-may-care looks could get him a little beneath-the-corset action from more than just one miserably engaged gal.

Okay, now let’s pretend Jack and Rose didn’t have commitment issues and wanted to stay together for the rest of their lives. There’s no doubt they could have both fit on the door.  Buzzfeed, Mythbusters and the endless speculation of millions of fans have proven that. But could they both have survived?

The issue most people overlook is the great burden of additional weight, were Jack to climb aboard. Mythbusters recreated their own modern day version of the scene and discovered that 80% of their bodies would have to be distributed evenly on the door to not die of hypothermia. If those guys could do it, why not Rose and Jack? Well, neither were very much in the mind for the precision of those calculations, adrenaline, impending death and what not.

In their minds, it’s full body on the board or death, not statistical percentages and calculations.

It’s also pretty safe to assume that they’d been eating pretty well on the Titanic, adding a few extra pounds under the belt. Maybe if Jack had just skipped seconds on dessert, he could have survived but as it was, his additional weight on the door would capsize it, landing them both in the same predicament. And a gentleman is supposed to put ladies first, right?

Ultimately, we defer to the words of director James Cameron, who has been asked many times over the course of the past 19 years, why couldn’t the star-crossed lovers share the door?

“The script says Jack dies,” Cameron said. “Jack has to die. So maybe we screwed up and the board should have been a tiny bit smaller, but the dude is going down.”