Everything feels like I’m carrying bricks on my back and someone keeps putting more on my back, one by one. You don’t really notice at first but then all of a sudden you stop and look up and you realize that you’re being crushed under the weight your carrying.
And these bricks aren’t thing you can just push off, their things like paying rent, walking the dog, going to class, grading papers, writing reports, reading for class, buying groceries, interacting with roommates and peers.
I just want a break. I’ll pile the bricks back on, but I’d like to be able to stretch and feel the free air without feeling like it’s trying to crush me under it’s weight.
The fact that Chuck had no girlfriends because he was focused on being a pilot makes his character that much more complex and well written. And tragic. Not because he supposedly died a virgin, but because I can see how they could’ve taken his character the opposite direction: he could’ve been that guy who swaggered around with a girl on each arm, who took advantage of his fame. It would have been the perfect contrast to Mako and Raleigh. He would’ve been the character for the audience to hate, so that they can root even more for the underdogs.
Instead we saw how absolutely dedicated Chuck was to the war. At the beginning of the movie he boasts to the reporters about his skill in piloting Striker, because that is the only way he sees himself. He sees the world in kaiju kill counts. He doesn’t exist without the Jaeger program. No girlfriends, no friends, no distractions - only Max and a father he doesn’t get along with. Chuck is an arrogant jerk because he is one of the best rangers around, because he grew up to be a soldier, and he grew up too quickly (see: becoming a pilot at the fucking age of 15).
He’s a dick to Raleigh because he will tolerate only the best, and he initially thinks Raleigh isn’t worthy of being a pilot. But he’s a good guy at heart: he’s quick to abandon orders and run to Cherno’s aid, to run to his dad when he’s thrown and breaks his arm, and he’s quick to start cheering Gipsy on (“kick his ass!”) and reconcile with Raleigh.
I think Chuck values the war over his own life. He tells Raleigh that he wants to come back alive, and that he quite likes his life, but when push comes to shove, he sticks with the mission. He doesn’t plead to be ejected in an escape pod. He willingly chooses to sacrifice himself, at age 21, so that Raleigh and Mako can finish winning the war and billions of other human lives can continue to be lived out.
I don’t think Chuck ever imagined a life for himself after the war. He probably didn’t know how to. He was essentially bred to become a pilot and fight kaiju. I think Chuck knew from the time he was very young that he would die in the war, and so he refused to die as anything but the best.
In conclusion, he’s more than an egotistical jerk with daddy issues and excuse me I’m going to go sit in a corner and fucking cry about all these Chuck Hansen feelings I have. ;_;