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Margot In ‘Cat Person,’ Explained: What Makes Margot Skeptical Of Robert?

Margot’s character in the 2023 romance drama film, Cat Person, resonates with many viewers as she embodies the complexities of navigating modern-day romance as a young woman. Margot represents the internal conflict that many individuals face in their relationships, especially in a society where gender roles and expectations often clash with personal desires and aspirations. One aspect of Margot’s character that stands out the most is her struggle to balance being perceived as pleasing and sophisticated while also maintaining her sense of independence and strength. The struggle reflects the societal pressure placed on women to conform to certain standards of femininity while also asserting their own agency and autonomy. Margot’s desire to avoid hurting a man’s ego and her fear of coming across as too strong highlight the delicate tightrope that many women walk in their interactions with men. 

Spoilers Ahead

Was Margot An Overthinker? 

Throughout the film, Cat Person Margot shows the traits of an overthinker, which are evident in her actions, interactions, and inner monologues. Margot’s tendency to dwell on worst-case scenarios, skepticism about her surroundings, and constant self-doubt symbolize a deeper internal struggle with trust, insecurity, and the need for validation in her life. Firstly, Margot’s overthinking manifests in her initial encounter with Robert at the popcorn shop where she had been working part-time. Despite Margot’s attempts to be friendly, Robert’s lukewarm response triggers doubts in Margot’s mind, leading her to question whether there’s something wrong with her. Her tendency to overanalyze social interactions reflects her fear of rejection and desire to be liked. Moreover, Margot’s overthinking extends beyond social interactions to her perception of potential threats in her surroundings. 

The episode with the abandoned dog outside her dorm illustrates how her mind conjures up terrifying scenarios, such as the dog attacking her roommate Laura. This tendency to make minor situations seem bigger than it actually is demonstrates Margot’s hyper-vigilance and fear of danger, contributing to her overall sense of anxiety and unease. Furthermore, Margot’s overthinking is evident in her hesitation to take action in certain situations, particularly when it comes to expressing her desires or needs. For example, she refrains from suggesting watching a movie with Robert together, fearing that he might perceive her as too forward. This reluctance to take risks stems from her fear of rejection and reinforces her belief that she must conform to societal expectations of femininity and passivity.

What Makes Margot Skeptical Of Robert?

Margot’s perceptions of Robert are colored by her internalized fears and doubts, leading her to question his intentions and actions. Her exposure to the discussion about female ants and their reproductive behavior highlights her awareness of gender dynamics and the vulnerability that women can face. In her university class, she learns about how a female ant retains her wings until the day she is no longer a virgin, at which point the wings are shed. Later, Margot notices a skull and speculates that it may have been fractured, as if the person it belonged to had been sacrificed. This prompts a discussion about the age-old treatment of women as sacrificial or objects of pleasure. The teacher also discusses queen bees, saying that male bees lose their genitalia during copulation and risk disembowelment upon withdrawal. This comparison leads Margot to reflect on how, in the animal kingdom, female creatures can hold power, while in human society, women often feel the need to carefully consider their actions before proceeding. This knowledge serves as a backdrop for her interactions with Robert, causing her to view his actions through a lens of caution and suspicion. Moreover, Margot’s friend, a women’s rights activist, reinforces her skepticism by warning her about the dangers of blindly trusting men and telling her to set boundaries in relationships. This advice further reinforces Margot’s tendency to question Robert’s motives and behaviors, especially in light of her own experiences and observations. At night, Margot found herself in the university lab, exchanging texts with Robert. His gestures came across as caring when he offered to bring her favorite snacks so she wouldn’t feel hungry. Despite this kindness, Margot’s mind began to spiral into worst-case scenarios, pondering whether Robert could potentially be a serial killer. She confided these fears to her friend, who advised her to think before acting. As Robert arrived at the lab, Margot’s overthinking persisted. Even though he brought her the snacks as promised, her mind raced with suspicions about his intentions. As the door of the storage suddenly shut, Margot’s fears intensified, leading her to believe that Robert had trapped her there with malicious intent. Despite Robert’s protests of innocence, Margot’s overactive imagination fueled her panic, causing her to beg and pound on the door in desperation. It was only when Robert forcefully pushed the door open that Margot was relieved. Throughout the ordeal, Margot’s tendency to overanalyze every interaction with Robert as a potential threat underscores her deep-seated mistrust and fear. Despite his genuine gestures of kindness, Margot’s overactive imagination led her to scrutinize his every action, searching for ulterior motives and signs of danger. This constant state of suspicion reflects Margot’s struggle to navigate relationships amidst her own insecurities and anxieties.

In What Way Does Margot Need Validation From Robert?

Margot’s relentless need for validation from Robert is laid bare throughout their encounters, shedding light on her need for acceptance and affirmation from men. Despite her initial impressions of Robert as a caring and considerate gentleman, Margot’s perception of their relationship begins to unravel as she grapples with her own self-doubt and fears of inadequacy. The exchange of affectionate gestures, such as Robert making her a classic playlist, ensuring her safe return to her dorm, calling her sweetheart, and kissing her forehead, leads Margot to believe that she has found a partner who genuinely cares about her well-being. However, her confidence is shaken when she encounters her asexual ex-boyfriend, causing her to question her own attractiveness and desirability. In a desperate bid for validation, Margot sends Robert suggestive pictures of herself, only to be met with silence and indifference from his side. Margot’s subsequent attempts to salvage their relationship by suggesting another date are met with lukewarm responses from Robert as he tells her he is busy at work, leaving her feeling increasingly insecure and uncertain about their connection. Finally, Margot agrees to accompany Robert to a movie that holds little appeal to her, driven by her people-pleasing attitude born out of her insecurities. During their car ride to the movie, Margot’s overactive imagination leads her to envision worst-case scenarios involving Robert’s potentially violent intentions.

Although Robert reassures her with a joke, saying he won’t kill her, it intensifies Margot’s discomfort as she observes his unsettling fixation on a kissing scene from the movie depicting male dominance and female submission. This made her contemplate the fact that maybe this is the true idea of romance for Robert. After the movie, when Robert invites her out for a drink, Margot begins to contemplate her desirability and intellect in his eyes. She imagines him confiding in a therapist about his true feelings, which he seldom shares with her. Agreeing to go for a drink, she faces disappointment when she is denied entry due to being underage. Robert’s response triggers Margot’s insecurities, prompting her to question whether he still finds her attractive, even in vulnerable moments. This scenario symbolizes Margot’s ongoing struggle for validation and affirmation in her relationship with Robert, highlighting her need for reassurance and acceptance. Then he began making out with her. Margot realized he was a bad kisser, prompting her to wonder if she was too judgmental. Despite their age difference, his awkward technique and dominant posture highlighted power dynamics, suggesting his control in the relationship. But Margot begins to believe that maybe she should sleep with him because he is already a lousy kisser, and she can be with him to make him know how blessed and grateful he is to have Margot. Robert’s approach to intimacy was weird as he groped her and pulled her towards him in a violent manner that was neither passionate nor romantic. Thus, Margot began to wonder whether she would have sex with him or not. But, being the people-pleaser she is, as most women are taught to be, she realized she had to play along or he would carry her into the “torture chamber” to inflict pain upon her. So, while the situation is unpleasant and terrible, she must cooperate with him in order to get it over with as soon as possible without offending him.  Her hesitation to reject him came from the fear that he’d grow violent if rejected. She knew she had made the worst decision of her life by consenting to sleep with him, only to be validated as appealing.

In What Way Did Margot Take Accountability For Her Actions?

Margot began ignoring Robert’s texts without revealing the truth that she didn’t like him. Despite feeling uncomfortable with his behavior, she hesitated to block him, fearing it might hurt him. She imagined scenarios where he could die, hoping to avoid his persistent texts. When Taylor suggested being direct with Robert about her lack of interest, Margot hesitated, feeling guilty due to their previous intimate encounter. Seeing Robert’s attempts to portray himself as sensitive and romantic, despite his concerning behavior, made Margot uneasy. Eventually, Taylor intervened and informed Robert of Margot’s disinterest. His sweet response momentarily made Margot doubt her judgment. However, encountering him at a friend’s birthday party reignited her fear, prompting her to leave immediately. Robert’s continued harassment, including accusations and derogatory remarks, intensified Margot’s frustration and fear for her safety. Despite reporting him to the police, Margot felt helpless when they dismissed her concerns. She and Taylor then sought safety equipment, highlighting Margot’s determination to protect herself. Margot’s decision to confront Robert at his house, despite the risks, demonstrates her courage and determination to address the situation directly.

Discovering evidence of Robert’s stalker tendencies, including the presence of the same dog that was outside her dorm weeks ago, validated her suspicions. The confrontation with Robert escalated into physical violence, with Margot defending herself and ultimately seeking refuge in a chamber with him as the situation became dangerous. Her willingness to fight back shows her resilience and refusal to be a passive victim. The situation that encapsulates Margot’s readiness to take responsibility for her actions is her decision to confront Robert directly about his stalker-like behavior. Despite feeling terrified and threatened by him, Margot chooses to confront the situation head-on, demonstrating her willingness to face the consequences of her actions. This decision symbolizes Margot’s growth and empowerment throughout the ordeal. Despite initially feeling intimidated and victimized by Robert’s actions, instead of allowing Robert to manipulate and gaslight her, Margot asserts her truth and demands accountability for his actions.

In the aftermath, Margot’s contemplation of Robert’s whereabouts and the implications for her safety reflects her lingering fear and uncertainty. The ordeal prompts her to reflect on the complexities of modern romance and the challenges of trusting others. The ending of the movie leaves you thinking, doesn’t it? I mean, Margot’s situation hits close to home for a lot of us. I think that’s something a lot of women can relate to these days, especially with online dating. You know, Margot’s not just some overthinker; she’s like a lot of us out there, trying to balance being cautious while also not wanting to hurt someone’s feelings. It’s like this constant battle between wanting to stay safe and not wanting to come off as too harsh. And it’s exhausting, isn’t it? Constantly second-guessing every move, every text, and every interaction. And then there’s that fear of the unknown, that uncertainty about whether someone’s intentions are good or evil. Like, will this guy ever stop following her? Will she ever be truly safe? It’s terrifying to think about, but it’s a reality for so many of us.


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