The Tyler Durden Fantasy

Fight Club was a fantastic movie. It perfectly adapted an incredible story with fantastic performances and well thought out direction. Its unique look at a character who is fed up with his life of day in day out work with only useless things to show for it.

If it wasn’t for Tyler Durden’s charismatic speeches about leaving that life behind, the nameless main character would have spent the rest of his life miserable and depressed, but was Tyler Durden really a heroic character? Does he really deserve to have all of the quotes glorified as something we should learn from? I don’t believe so.

Tyler was created out of necessity to the narrator because the narrator was incredibly bored with his life and didn’t have the courage to do anything to change it. Maybe Tyler did help out by giving narrator courage to change, but I don’t know how anyone can say he ended up changing for the better.

He took this new found courage to be a jerk to everyone without taking the responsibly and guilt onto himself, for the simple reason of being bored with his life. Is starting a cult really supposed to be considered good? A cult that leads to blowing everything up? Remember, this is a character that came to life simply out of extreme depression/boredom. I mean it got so bad that Narrator had to seriously injure himself, putting his life at risk just to get rid of him. How can he be a protagonist when something like that is necessary?

I’m pretty sure that Tyler isn’t the hero when he wants to kill Marla just because she “maybe a risk”. Like that was the turning point of the film because that’s what causes Narrator to find out Tyler isn’t really all that, and it is when narrator starts fighting back.

Tyler isn't exactly a god.

The way Narrator was living pre-Tyler is a bad thing, but full on Tyler is a bad thing too. A middle ground between the two is where life should be lived. Tyler really is a bad person in the context of the film and seeing everyone glorifying him, putting him on a pedestal, and starting fight clubs themselves annoys me, because I don’t believe they understand the authors intention for the character they are idolizing so very much.

You can say that it depends on your view of things. Maybe you thought Tyler was doing the right thing. Maybe you can say all the pranks were a good thing, that Tyler was helping by creating a fight club, and that the banks really do deserve getting destroyed.

Maybe even Marla’s suicidal tendencies means she shouldn’t be worried about. Maybe you can say Darth Vader and the Emperor is the tragic heroes of Star Wars because you think dictatorships with absolute powers are a good thing too. That doesn’t mean George Lucas intended you to make your own decisions on who’s good and who’s bad.

The entire movie was obviously set up to end with Tyler being the enemy. Tyler fans make it sound like the movie was about anti-consumerism and waging war against the evil banks, but that’s obviously missing the point altogether. The entire movie was about a man with multiple personalities trying to resolve his internal struggle that came from him feeling like his boring path laid out in front of him is the only possible path.

Calling Tyler any type of hero makes it sound like the goal of the climax is to wage war on the banks and consumerism itself, and that makes the entire split personality thing seem like a cool little twist put onto the side. I don’t think the movie was ever intended to be that.