Opinion

“The online reaction to Chris Pratt’s new engagement is seriously disappointing”

Posted by
Hannah-Rose Yee
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Everyone is happy and all parties involved have moved on. Why can’t the internet come terms with that? 

Chris Pratt and Katherine Schwarzenegger are engaged. The Guardians of the Galaxy star proposed to his lifestyle writer (and daughter of Arnold) girlfriend and she said yes. “Sweet Katherine,” Pratt shared on his Instagram. “I’m thrilled to be marrying you. Proud to live boldly in faith with you. Here we go!”

Congratulations all round! Well done, many happy returns, Herzlichen Glückwunsch zu deiner, etc, etc.

Sorry, what’s that? The internet has more to say about this engagement than merely offering their congratulations? Of course it does. People – even celebrities, even the objectively fourth best Hollywood Chris after Pine, Hemsworth and Evans, but right above Messina – get engaged every single day, but for some reason this particular union has rankled fans on social media. 

“Why is Chris Pratt engaged already, he literally just got divorced,” one fan shared on Twitter. Another wrote: “Chris Pratt is already engaged hasn’t he only been divorced for like a year? Men smh.” “Is the ink even dry from his divorce” another asked. Others simply shared “rebounds don’t last”, “that was fast” and “ew”.  

There were also those who insisted on comparing Schwarzenegger with Anna Faris, Pratt’s ex-wife from whom he separated in 2017. The comparison was only natural, you know, because why do women exist if not to compete against each other for a man? “Chris Pratt traded down,” wrote one Twitter user. “Your ex-wife way hotter sorry,” another added

In summation, here’s a comment from one fan on Twitter: “News of Chris Pratt getting newly engaged AGAIN just a few months after divorcing Anna Faris is heart-wrenching. Anna deserves so much better treatment. I don’t care if she’s taking it smiling. It seems so off to me. Boycotting anything with Chris Pratt in it.”

Anna Faris and Chris Pratt in 2017

The problem, according to these fans, is that Pratt is moving on much too fast for their liking. Why, he only filed for divorce from ex-wife Faris on *checks notes* 1 December 2017, after first announcing their separation in August of that year.

Sure, that was more than two years ago, but what’s the cooling off period on a nine-year marriage, right? Shouldn’t he have waited whatever the reasonable half-life of a union is before he decided to find happiness again? In the immortal words of Sex and the City’s Charlotte York, it takes you half the time you spent in a relationship to fully process the end of that relationship and reach closure. Considering Pratt and Faris were together for almost a decade, Pratt should have waited the better part of *does calculation* five years before allowing himself to open up to the possibility of something new. Assuming my math is correct, he’s still got almost three years left of waiting to do if he wants to satisfy our internet overlords.

But we all know that the human heart doesn’t work like that. It wants what it wants, and it moves in mysterious ways. Pratt met Schwarzenegger at some point in 2018 and, by 17 June they had publicly announced their relationship by going on a picnic. Pratt and Faris’ divorce was finalised on 2 November 2018 and on 14 January 2019 the pair announced their engagement. Not that it matters, but Pratt and Faris have been separated since August 2017. Both parties have since moved on. What’s the problem? 

Faris even commented on Pratt’s Instagram post about his new engagement, writing “I’m so happy for you both!! Congratulations!” Her response on his picture received more than 23,000 likes and 146 comments. On Schwarzenegger’s post about the engagement, Faris wrote: “I’m so happy for you both!!! I love you guys!!”

It doesn’t appear that Faris is being falsely magnanimous or forcing herself to be the bigger person. It looks as if she is genuinely happy for her ex and his new partner. Theirs appears to be another healthy celebrity divorce to add to the canon alongside Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin – who have family dinners together most weeks, with Martin even keeping a bedroom at Paltrow’s Brentwood mansion – or Bruce Willis and Demi Moore or Channing Tatum and Jenna Dewan Tatum.

But it hasn’t stopped fans from voicing their pity for Faris, whom they imagine to be positively prostrate with grief and just about ready to pack it all in and join a nunnery at the news of Pratt’s engagement. “Anna Faris sweetie I am so sorry,” one fan wrote on Twitter. Wrote another: “I’m so sorry Anna Faris I truly believed in you guys.” “Poor Anna Faris,” another added

Anna Faris and Chris Pratt with their son in 2017

Divorce is a part of modern life. As relationship therapist Esther Perel has explained, “love is a verb, not a permanent state of enthusiasm.” It transforms over time as you yourself, and the partners you are with, grow and change. Couples in the same relationship will have many different kinds of marriages over the course of their partnership. Some will end that relationship and move onto new ones. This is the state of our unions today.

In the UK, some 42% of marriages will end in divorce. In the US, that number is almost 50%. That means that almost half of all marriages will end. It’s naïve and also a little bit spiteful to think that both of those parties must either wait long periods of time before moving on or never move on at all. 

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“People divorce shaming Chris Pratt because his divorce was finalised TWO years ago and now he’s engaged,” as one woman wrote on Twitter. “Really? Get off your moral high ground and stop painting Faris like a victim, she isn’t.”

Faris is no more the victim here than Jennifer Aniston was when she announced her separation from Justin Theroux, or Jennifer Garner was when her and Ben Affleck split up. Faris is a woman whose marriage didn’t work and who has moved on. So has her ex. All parties involved are happy for each other. 

So why can’t everyone else be happy for them? 

Images: Getty

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Hannah-Rose Yee

Hannah-Rose Yee is a writer, podcaster and recent Australian transplant in London. You can find her on the internet talking about pop culture, food and travel.

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