SparkNotes Blog

What if These Literary Love Triangles Had Turned Out Differently?

Boy meets girl, girl meets second, equally attractive boy, all hell (or at least some mild confusion) breaks loose. The love triangle is one of the oldest stories in the book. We take it for granted that Katniss chooses Peeta, that Bella passively snuggles up to Edward, that Juliet blows off Paris for Romeo (as if there was ever a question). But what would’ve happened if things had played out differently? We have a few ideas:

1. Bella + Edward vs. Jacob (Twilight)

How it went: Despite the mesmeric power of his abs, Bella rejects Jacob in favor of an ice-cold, smothering geriatric in the body of a cute teenager. Jacob howls at the moon, then falls in love with a weird baby.
How it could’ve gone: Bella marries Jacob the summer after her high school graduation. They quickly have a coupla werewolf kids, and Bella gets a job as a waitress at Carver Café. In an effort to stay fit after the second kid, she gets really into jazzercise. The marriage ends after Bella celebrates her 30th birthday and starts feeling uncomfortable about the fact that Jacob still looks like he’s 17. She moves back to Arizona, where she marries a patent attorney. They eat a lot of lasagna.

2. Katniss + Peeta vs. Gale (The Hunger Games)

How it went: Katniss ends up living a relatively contented, isolated life in the ruins of District 12 with Peeta, world’s most patient boyfriend.
How it could’ve gone: Katniss and Gale live together but never marry, because neither believes in marriage (or kittens, or rainbows, or candy). Katniss agrees to appear as a guest on Gale’s political talk show to discuss her stance on arming civilians, only to suffer a post-traumatic flashback to the arena after seeing herself on a camera’s monitor. Using a concealed bow, she quickly neutralizes all Capitol “threat” in the area. Before she can go on trial, she’s sprung from prison by a newly sober Haymitch. The two realize that they were made for each other, and go adventuring throughout the ruins of the former North America, eventually making their home on the rim of an extinct volcano.

3. Princess Leia + Han Solo vs. Luke Skywalker (Star Wars)

How it went: Leia learns she has a thing for scruffy-looking nerf herders, and Han decides he doesn’t mind sassy princesses, and the two of them totally get married and have babies! (Post-Return of the Jedi, of course.)
How it could’ve gone: Nope. Not touching that one with a ten-foot lightsaber.

4. Hermione + Ron vs. Viktor Krum (Harry Potter)

How it went: Brilliant ginger babies and happily ever after FTW!
How it could’ve gone: After their whirlwind school-year romance, Hermione and Viktor stay in touch by owl. After the events of Deathly Hallows, she goes to Bulgaria to visit Krum, and they marry soon after. Ten years later, a bachelor Ron finally admits his long-standing love to Hermione over a glass of butterbeer at a Hogwarts reunion. Days later, she leaves Krum, citing his continued refusal to learn how to pronounce her name. Within months, she and Ron are finally hitched. You can’t fight fate!

5. Archie + Betty vs. Veronica (Archie Comics)

How it went: He’s dated both of them on and off for decades. Occasionally they get jealous or even team up against him, but they just can’t shake their inexplicable love for Riverdale’s most bumbling teen.
How it could’ve gone: Betty and Veronica finally realize that Archie will never make up his mind about which one of them to date, and they both dump him for good. He ends up sharing a bachelor pad with Jughead, who’s his real soulmate after all.