Hancock’s Mary

Her name is Mary Embrey. She’s married to an ad executive who goes by the name of Ray. They have a son, Aaron, a healthy marriage, and a great place to live. If you haven’t seen Hancock, read no further, for spoilers lie therein as my series Women Who Wow Wednesday continues.

Hancock's Mary played by Charlize Therone
Hancock’s Mary played by Charlize Therone

In 2008’s Hancock, Will Smith plays a superhero who’s lost his memory. He spends most of his days in a drunken stupor. When he flies to the rescue, he does more damage to the buildings he runs into than he does doing good. The citizens of Los Angeles hate him. The media hates him. And no one can get rid of him. How do you get rid of a superhero impervious to all weapons?

That is until one day, Hancock saves Ray. Flying between a screaming train and Ray’s stuck car over the railroad track, Hancock body-checks the locomotive into a mangled pile of iron scrap. To show appreciation, Ray offers his services to clean up Hancock’s image.

It is during this time Hancock meets Ray’s lovely wife Mary. Unbeknownst to Hancock, Mary’s known him all her life.

One evening, while Ray is away, attraction pulls Hancock and Mary together. They succumb to temptation and kiss. This frightens Mary into grabbing the superhero by the lapels and hurling him through the kitchen wall, decimating the family fridge and three parked cars in the process. She’s superhuman, too!

Hancock & Mary
Hancock & Mary

In order to protect her family, she withholds vital information from Hancock. When he threatens to tell her husband of her superpowers unless she reveals their origins, she loses it. They get into an all out brawl on the city street while dark storm clouds churn in anger. I guess the universe doesn’t approve of their little spat. Well, if you consider Mary’s penchant for smashing a massive concrete mixer truck upside Hancock’s head a little spat.

Mary explains mortals knew them as angels and gods. They were created as a pair 3,000 years ago. No matter where they are in the world, they will always find each other. They will always draw near to remain as one. She goes on to say they are the last of their kind. If they remain together, they will lose their power. Just as it happened 80 years ago when an attack in an alleyway left Hancock with a fractured skull, causing his amnesia. Although she didn’t mention it at the time, Mary deserted him so he could regain his strength and live, in spite of him never remembering who she was. With that selfless act of kindness, she saved him.

Reminiscent of a Shakespearean tragedy, Mary is shot. Hancock remembers how she saved him. He repays Mary’s act of kindness by leaving her for dead in the hospital. Once she recovers, she lives without ever having to worry again of Hancock’s interference in her life or with the life of her husband and family. Hancock saves Mary by letting her go.

Have you had anyone in your life show you an act of kindness that led you to a changed life? Has anyone ever saved you?

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9 thoughts on “Hancock’s Mary

  1. Actually, it is quite interesting that I am reading a book called The Story Factor and it’s about storytelling. It said a convincing story should touch the core humanity to establish connection between storytellers and audiences. So, if I see it this way, it seems inevitable for Hancock to develop this intension with Mary.
    Indeed, it would be a less romantic way to interpret it.
    Personally, I love imperfect characters. So, yes, I do like Hancock, even though he is not good looking for a superhero 🙂

  2. I loved this element of Hancock, and would like to see a movie from Mary’s perspective, as you’ve written this. The actual film feels like two movies: A goofy Superhero send-up, and a serious Greek tragedy. I liked the latter elements better than the former.

  3. Can’t stand Will Smith. Lordy that’s all kinds of messed up. LOL. I for one think he is cute and wish he would go back to his feel good films. I’ve never seen Hancock. It never looked like something I wanted to see. The story line seems interesting. Let me answer your poignant questions: Have you had anyone in your life show you an act of kindness that led you to a changed life? That’s a good question. I’ve led a very rough life and had some great and not so great experiences. What I’ve learned is not to be selfish, open and willing to help others out.
    Has anyone ever saved you? I tend to surround myself with strong individuals who aren’t afraid to be truthful with me. So I guess they tend to save me with their honesty when it comes to my life. Great piece again Jack!!!

    • Great answers, Lakeshia! Just as you said, and just as Hancock eventually realized, going beyond oneself to help others provides a greater benefit to everyone all around. Regarding being saved, again, you hit the nail on the head, surrounding ourselves with strong, honest individuals who have our interests at heart yields great fruit. You are a wise one!

  4. I recently read the Blue Bloods series where the fallen angels/vampires also find each other through each cycle of their lives. The Blue Bloods books are a teen book but I found them to be very interesting and not a normal vampire book. They were a fast read and very entertaining.

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