Away Michael Gow Character Analysis
Meet the Character
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Tom: Tom is a very talented actor with the potential to go far with his acting. “You’ll be our next Chips Rafferty eh, son”. He and his family moved to Australia from England 8 years ago and there not the wealthiest family but there certainly the happiest family. His acting and certainly his family are important to him. Tom is quite defensive, and criticism towards his family concerns him and doesn’t make him happy.
Tom has a great relationship with his parents as he gets on great with them, he gets on well with Meg but he cares for her more than he lets on. “It’s from the bottom of my heart, actually” Tom doesn’t really get along with Megs mum Gwen. She’s quite rude towards Tom and his family and that makes Tom really defensive. [Tom runs back in. He has heard this] “I hope you have a rotten holiday”.
Meg: Meg is an open minded and smart young girl; she is very accepting of others and is also very appreciative of what she has ‘That’s really nice. That’s really nice of you’.
Meg values her family, but doesn’t understand why her mother acts in certain ways or makes certain comments ‘You were awful’ , she highly values her father and cares about Tom, but not as much as he does about her ‘Well… I still wish I got you something’
Gwen: Gwen is married to Jim and is Meg’s mother, her and her family are better off than most and she isn’t afraid to show it as she is quite a snob. She likes to live and have a more luxurious life than others and likes to point it out as well. “We got a new caravan. Everything in it you could want” Gwen seems to care about herself more than anyone else. Gwen and Jim come in] “You were supposed to hurry, not stand round yapping. There are a million things to do. I’ll have to do it all, I expect” Gwen’s only real relationship is with Jim. Meg and Gwen seem to be quite annoyed with each other and there seems to be a lot tension between them. Gwen doesn’t get along with most people as she rubs them the wrong way but she cares about her family most. “Have a lovely time in your…tent”
Jim: Jim is a positive person always praising others when they do well ‘You’ll be our next Chips Rafferty, eh, son? ’, he also tries to keep everything calm and under control ‘We’ll find them. Don’t get upset’.
He is dedicated to his wife Gwen and daughter Meg, he gives us the impression that he wants to give them the best lives they could have. Jim is friendly and kind to everyone and seems always supportive in what others do, ‘You look lovely though, Mags’.
Vic: Vic is a very supportive and happy person ‘But we did enjoy it. Very much. You should be proud Mr Baker’. She and her family and not the wealthiest but she appreciates everything that she has ‘Oh… no. Not exactly. We’ve got a tent’. Vic is proud of her son Tom and happily married to her husband Harry, she is friendly to everyone and see’s the good in them, ‘You were marvellous’.
Harry: Harry and his family came out to Australia 8 years ago and haven’t seen much of the country, ‘8 years. Not a lot of it, no, not yet’. Him and his family aren’t the wealthiest ‘A lean-to? ’ and can’t compete with other families but they still appreciate everything they have. Harry values his family and does his best job at giving them the best lives he can give them; he’s appreciative of them which makes them a much happier family. Harry is kind to others in every situation and tries to keep peace, ‘Congratulations, son’.
Coral: Coral is a mysteries character who keeps to herself’ [Coral doesn’t respond]’. It appears she is suffering from a case of depression, ‘She looks awful, poor women’ while overcoming something that has happened to her son. She is supported by her husband Roy, but Roy is not the best supporter at times. Coral is quiet and hasn’t built many strong relationships with others as others are trying to with her ‘Did you enjoy the play? [Coral stares at her for a moment then looks away’. ]
Roy: Roy is the principal at Meg and Tom’s school. He is a very well-spoken man who seems to be quite successful. “So what do you think of our little Chips Rafferties, eh? Proud mums and dads? He’s married to his wife Coral who is a very mysterious woman who is quite withdrawn but Roy sticks by her like a loyal husband. His job and his wife seem to be very important to him. “Oh yes, yes. It has been a successful evening”. His main challenge or concern is his wife who is still grieving over the loss of what we assume is her son. Although he sometimes struggles with his wife he still cares about her and her feelings. “I thought I told you to get it the car”. He seems to get along well with pretty much everyone and everyone gets along well with him. Turning Points
Tom: Toms turning in the script is when he is talking with Meg on the beach; he is open to her about his terminal condition. Tom is very sick and cannot survive. When Tom finally tells Meg about his condition it brings him to tears ‘Why are you crying? ’ showing Tom’s emotional side and that he is actually scared of what is happening to him and that fact that he doesn’t have much longer to live.
Harry: Harry’s turning point in the script is when he is talking to Jim on the beach, Harry opens up to Jim about their life in England after the war and about his son terminal condition. Harry and his family left England for Australia after the living conditions, rationing and destruction after the war. Every day Harry keeps the burden of his son dying and the secret of this away from his son. We see that Harry struggles every day from these problems and that he looks strong on the outside but he is really dying on the inside ‘Even while we’re very, very sad. We have no regrets, but we have no hopes. Not any more’.
Jim: Jim is just like Gwen with holding to the past though he is just masking the struggling relationship in the family in fear of his past life. He does not however approach the problem of Gwen directly hence slowing the what would of been inevitable if it wasn’t for Vic’s intervention. Jim never faced this burden but yet is acting strong ‘Let’s all relax and calm down’, he never really had a turning point or confronted change for better in the script.
Vic: Vic faces the same challenges as her husband Harry, leaving her home in seek of a better life for her and her family and the everyday challenges she faces with the terminal condition of her son. After her and Gwen’s talk on the beach we see them both come back in tears, so we only can assume what their conversation was about. We see the change in Vic in an emotional state where we see her and Gwen crying and supporting each other ‘[The women come back. They have been crying and supporting each other]’.
Meg: Meg’s turning point is when she realises that her mum is a person to and they have been through a lot to care for her and worked hard for her to have a better life than she did. She realises that even though her mum can be rude she’s her mum and she accepts it. Im sorry”. This changes Meg for the better, it gives her an insight into what her mum and dad faced. It was caused by Meg when she was mad at her mum for purposely not packing Jim’s presents for her so they would feel guilt for her but Meg figured it out and was really annoyed with her. She asked her what she had done or been through and Gwen said exactly what she had been through which made Meg realise that she was just trying to do everything she could to ensure Meg had a better life than her mum.
Coral: Corals turning point is when she meets a man named Rick. Rick was looking for his wife when he stumbled upon Coral. Rick is on his honeymoon and made his wife embarrassed at lunch and is trying to find her, while Coral slipped out of the room that she and Roy are staying in. Rick and Coral become too attached to each other, especially Rick. “But I get excited when I know it’s time to see you”. Coral isn’t so withdrawn anymore although she still can’t get over the loss of her son. Roy is still worried about her but Coral claims she’ll be fine; Coral decides to leave the hotel and her old life and start over.
Roy: Roy’s turning point is when he just can’t take Corals behaviour anymore and just cracks it. ”Im going to have to do something, see someone’. This change makes Roy very frustrated and he just doesn’t know what to do anymore or how to handle it. Corals annoying behaviour causes frustration for Roy and when he finds that Coral and Rick are spending all this time together it really gets to him and that’s when Roy has had enough.
Gwen: Gwen’s turning point is when she and Vic go off for a walk along the beach after Gwen was talking about how she doesn’t understand how people wouldn’t want to fight for a better life. They came back and they had both been crying but Gwen seemed to have changed and realised some things. “What do you think of me? You must hate me? Why do you still bother? Im sorry…” Gwen realises that her life and her family’s life’s are very good compared to some others which brings her back to earth a bit. Beyond the text
Tom: Tom is scared of what the future holds, not only does he face into certain death but also faces the sickness and pain that will come before hand. Tom will try to amend and build on all the relationships that he has before his passing leaving as a good memory and relation to who he cares about and care about him.
Coral: Coral has gone off to start over, she will still wonder about and miss her son everyday but day by day she will worry less and less until he becomes a memory of what she did have with him instead of what she never got a chance to. She will have a happier life with more enjoyment without Roy controlling her.
Roy: Roy’s relationship with Coral is over and he will realise where he went wrong by trying to over control her and threatening her. Since he is now along he will focus on his career as a principal and try and build new relationships and learn from his mistakes.
Vic: Vic will cherish every moment she has left with Tom and become even closer to her husband through hard times. Vic will get a better riendship with Gwen as she will support her in the hardship of grief of the loss of her son and by losing something gain something else.
Meg: I think that Meg’s change will make her life a lot easier and better for her. I think it makes her realise that she has a really good life and she will never have to face the things that her parents and her mum in particular faced. I think that it will make it easier for her to have a better relationship with her mum now seeing she understands why she can get angry and upset. I think that her relationship with her dad was good and always will, but now it will make sure that she has an even better relationship with both of her parents.
Jim: I think that Jim will never really change; I think that Jim is a really nice guy but will never really confront his problems. I think he was too afraid to confront Gwen about her attitude and behaviour towards everything. I think that if Vic had never had a talk with her she would still be her old self so I think that Jim was lucky Vic talked to her. I think that Gwen’s change will help out their relationship a lot, and will make family life a lot easier.
Gwen: I think that Gwen’s change is a massive one; I think that she had the biggest change in the book. After the talk with Vic it makes her realise that she has a wonderful family and an amazing life which is better than most. Gwen’s change will make it a lot easier to have a good relationship with her daughter Meg. Gwen’s change will allow her and Jim to have a better relationship aswell; it will make it easier for them to talk and to just be with each other. I also think that it will change her outlook onto life and make her appreciate everything she’s got.
Harry: I think that Harrys change will benefit all his family especially Tom. I think he will cherish every moment with his family, I think that his relationship with Tom is great, and I think it will always be like that. Harry and Vic will be able to enjoy their lives with their son, as they are more willing to talk about Tom’s condition, it shows that he understands what’s going to happen one day and it shows that Harry loves his son and will make every day amazing for him.