Gilbert Blythe. If I was asked to name my ideal man, that would be my unabashed answer.
If you’re an avid Anne of Green Gables fan like me, you wholeheartedly understand and support my admiration for Gil. He is just about the most perfect fictional love interest to ever be written into existence.
But no matter how dreamy, Gilbert is only that: a fictional character. So eventually I’d have to flex on my answer and say, “Well… I suppose I mean someone like Gilbert Blythe.”
And, with some illustrative help from the movies and Netflix series, I’d be all too happy to tell you why.
1. He Exudes Charm
Gilbert Blythe is a charmer. From the moment he enters the story, he’s already trying to woo Anne with daring winks and the epically-flirtatious braid tug.
Because he’s used to girls falling all over him with that kind of stuff, and honestly, he’s not wrong.
Even after he realizes Anne is not so easily impressed, he begins to lay on the charm in more meaningful ways (like when he tucks a tendril of Anne’s hair behind her ear and calls her Carrots in such a sweet tone).
2. He’s Good with Words
Gil is uber intelligent, and part of that intelligence is shown through his witty banter. Witty banter is paramount - who doesn’t want a guy who’s quick-witted and eloquent with words? He keeps Anne on her toes (and keeps the rest of us on the edge of our seat).
3. He’s Ambitious
Gilbert knows what he wants, and he’ll put in the work until gets it. He and Anne have an intense academic rivalry, and though Gilbert doesn’t take it very seriously at first, he admits that competition with Anne pushes him in his studies. In addition, he actively pursues his dream of going to medical school, despite the numerous setbacks he faces along the way. He’s also ambitious when it comes to love - a point better discussed later.
4. He’s Super-Duper Cute
The epitome of tall, dark, and handsome, Gilbert Blythe is nothing short of beautiful. From his unruly mop of dark hair to the defined set of his jaw to his teasing, roguish grin, Gil SHOULD be your ideal. He’s got a lot going for him.
5. He’s Tender-Hearted and Willing To Sacrifice for the People He Loves
Gil spent years away from school so he could take care of his ailing father, but that’s not the only way he sacrifices for others. He generously gives Anne his teaching position at the Avonlea school so she doesn’t have to leave home - even though he desperately needs to save up for medical school.
6. He Sees More Value in a Girl than What’s on The Outside
It’s supposed to be obvious that Anne isn’t the most beautiful girl in Avonlea, yet Gilbert is unyielding in his pursuit of her. Why? He knows that beauty is only skin-deep, and he sees so much more in Anne. He loves her for her intelligence, her spunk, her imagination, and her heart… and because of that, no one could be more beautiful in his eyes.
7. He’s Anne’s Biggest Supporter & Best Friend
Once he and Anne finally move past their rivalry, Gilbert shows just how dedicated he is as a friend. He and Anne go for walks and bike rides, study for exams together, and talk about nearly everything. And when Anne performs poetry at the White Sands Concert, Gilbert is the first one to stand up and encore, his head bobbing as he claps proudly. He would do just about anything to see Anne succeed.
8. He’s Honest
Gilbert isn’t afraid to share his true opinions. With Anne in mind, he tells his friends, “being smart is better than being pretty,” and he openly shares with Anne his ideas about her writing. He isn’t one to cover things up or tell you what you want to hear, even if it decreases his chances of being liked.
9. He’s a Persistent Romantic
Ahh, the creme de la creme.
Gilbert Blythe is the ultimate romantic.
His pursuit of Anne makes your heart patter from the start. He makes it a point to rescue her from nearly drowning, pick her up in his buggy, ask her to dance in the woods, and propose on the footbridge. And even after Anne dismisses his offer and he gets engaged to a different girl, he still knows he couldn’t possibly live without Anne.
So, like a true persevering romantic, he’s literally facing death when he breathes the most beautiful line: “There would never be anyone for me but you.” And just like that, Gilbert Blythe’s nature is summed up: you want someone who will wait for you, fight for you, and love you just as you are.