American Psycho

American Psycho

American Psycho Date with Evelyn Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Bateman is on the phone making a reservation for himself and Courtney (who is on the other line) when Evelyn buzzes into the third line. She is upset – her neighbor was found decapitated the day before, and she’s been staying at a hotel and skipping work to get pampered in order to recover. She argues with Bateman, asking him where he was the night before when she was calling him for comfort. He tells her that her neighbor’s head is in his freezer and invites her to dinner. Without any transition, Bateman finds himself sitting across from Evelyn at Barcadia; he hasn’t cancelled his reservation or plans with Courtney.
Bateman’s relationship is so shallow that he has no qualms about carrying on an affair with one of Evelyn’s closest friends. Likewise, his relationship with Courtney is so shallow that he feels no remorse for standing her up to go to dinner with another woman. Again, it is unclear what Bateman is saying or admitting (if anything) when telling Evelyn that his neighbor’s head is in his freezer. Did he really kill the neighbor? Is he only taunting Evelyn? Did he actually say these words to her at all?
Themes
Materialism and Consumption Theme Icon
Vice and Violence Theme Icon
The Truth Theme Icon
Over dinner, Bateman’s mind wanders to the Christmas shopping he’s been doing, and the conversation between Evelyn and him remains shallow, discussing friends of theirs who they dislike. Bateman stops to wonder if Evelyn would ever sleep with another woman… maybe if forced to at gunpoint. They talk about Price; Bateman says there’s a rumor he’s in rehab and Evelyn wonders if he has AIDS. Evelyn continues talking about some posters she saw on the subway, when she abruptly stops and asks if Ivana Trump is sitting across the restaurant from them. Bateman is enthralled but then quickly annoyed to discover that Evelyn is nowhere near correct.
Bateman is so detached in his relationship with Evelyn that the only way he can stay interested in their dinner is by imagining forcing her into a violent sexual encounter. It’s interesting, though, that he does not fantasize about this act but ponders it much more theoretically. Because of his social circle, he probably couldn’t actually ever do this to Evelyn. As is often the case, the conversation revolves around Bateman’s fixations with AIDS and Donald Trump, and involves another instance of mistaken identity.
Themes
Identity and Isolation Theme Icon
Monotony and Desensitization Theme Icon
Vice and Violence Theme Icon
The Truth Theme Icon
The dinner carries on with Evelyn doing most of the talking and Bateman hardly paying attention to her. She goes on a long tangent about her affection for him and her friend’s upcoming wedding. Bateman’s mind wanders as she goes on and on about weddings and love; he only joins her train of thought once in a while to interject with things like asking to bring an AK-47 to the wedding. But then he’s brought back to reality as Evelyn tells him, “We should do it.” She wants to get married. She doesn’t think Bateman should wait until he’s thirty, and her friend’s wedding was so romantic. Bateman tunes her out completely and takes out a cigar to smoke. When Evelyn tells him to ask permission before smoking, he simply tells her he’s wearing sixty dollar boxer shorts.
Again, it is unclear if Bateman’s interjections are actually being said and ignored, or are just part of his storytelling to the reader. Knowing Evelyn, it’s not unlikely, in this instance, that she would be talking and talking without ever listening to the things her boyfriend is saying. Bateman has no interest in marriage, even with Evelyn appealing to his age, and because he cares so little about it, he is completely flippant with Evelyn and flaunts his wealth to remind her who is the powerful one in the couple.
Themes
Materialism and Consumption Theme Icon
The Truth Theme Icon