Mary Hatch-Bailey (born sometime in 1910) is the deuteragonist of the 1946 Frank Capra film It's a Wonderful Life. She's George Bailey's high school love interest and eventually wife.
She was portrayed by Jean Gale as a child and Donna Reed as an adult.
Why She Rocks
- Donna Reed does a phenomenal job as Mary, plus she also looks very attractive.
- Even though the film's mainly centered on George and about his life, she's still a very compelling character in her own right.
- As a child, she developed a serious romantic interest for George, and knew he was the person for her. Plus considering she was unmarried in the George-less universe, it shows that she’d rather be single than settle down with someone just because of societal expectations. That's pretty bold for her times.
- Speaking of which, she loves George not because he’s rich, popular, or even cute, but because he wanted to change the world, and he saw the good in just about everyone. She could have had a crush Sam Wainwright since he was rich and promised a comfortable lifestyle, but nope, she chose the protective and selfless one.
- She also sees herself as an equal, rather than worshiping him and makes sure to keeps his ego in check, like when she jokes that she married him just to avoid becoming an old maid, or when she stuck up for the kids in the third act when George had a breakdown.
- She's almost as caring and selfless as George himself. She volunteered during World War II, running the local branch of the USO while still having time to raise her four children. On her and George's wedding day, she's the one who willingly volunteers the $2,000 she and George had saved for their honeymoon around the world to keep the Building and Loan open and help its loyal customers. Then she also helps George christen new homes in Bailey Park, repaired an old broken down house, and genuinely loves giving to others who are less fortunate, even though she and George aren’t the most financially well-off themselves.
- And that not even getting into her rallying the people of Bedford Falls to help George pay his due $8000 after his uncle misplaced the others, and Potter stole it. Seriously, give this lady some credit!
- Despite being sweet and gentle for the majority, she never lets others take advantage of her or holds back from doing what's necessary. As children, Violet tells Mary she likes George, and Mary snaps back, “You like every boy” before sticking her tongue out at Violet behind her back. And she's just as sassy as an adult, yelling up the stairs to her mother to freak her out when she got too nosy for her.