Book Reviews

Outsiders Character Analysis- Dally

by Izzy J., Age 12 , Grade 7, South East Junior HIgh, Iowa City, IOWA USA
Teacher: Mr.Keller-Wilson

 

     The only person you care about dies, what would you do? In the novel, The Outsiders, by S.E Hinton, a greaser, J.D, Dally takes friendship to the extreme, he take a sentence meant for

Two-Bit, and provided an escape to friends and fellow greasers in need, when the plan goes south and his kid brother dies, Dally can’t handle this loss,robs a bank and pulls a gun on the police, causing them to shoot him. Through being, hot-headed, tough, and insecure, Dally isn’t able to adapt to change, which lead to his downfall.

  

   Through being, hot-headed, this lead to Dally’s down-fall. Dally, Johnny,and pony are talking about the war going on between the greasers and socs. Pony mentions that dally could kill someone with a heater(gun) and Dally instantly becomes defensive. The conversation happened like this, “....”But you kill people with heaters!” I said frightened. “Ya kill em’ with switchblades, too, don’t ya, kid?” Dally said in a hard voice….”(83). This shows Dally is hot-headed because, he could have stayed calm in that situation yet he didn’t. Another piece of evidence showing Dally is hot-headed, is, Dally storms out of the drive-in movie after Johnny stands up to him. No one usually stands up to Dally and he doesn’t know how to react, Pony explained, “...Dally got up and stalked off, his fists jammed in his pockets and a frown on his face. He didn’t come back”(24-25). This shows he is hot-headed, because he stomped off and didn’t do anything to calm down, but instead, left to get into a fight. Through all of this, this proves that Dally is hot-headed.

   

   Dally is Tough, this lead to his down-fall. Dally broke out of the hospital, and joined the rumble, even with an injured arm. After he gets out and joins the rumble, he says, “...”I thought you were in the hospital,” I yelled as the soc knocked me to the ground and I rolled to avoid getting kicked.

“I was” Dally was having a hard time because his left arm was still in bad shape, “I ain’t now”

“How?” I managed to ask as the soc I was fighting leaped on me and we rolled near Dally.

“Talked to the nurse with two-bit’s switchblade.”....”(144). This shows he is tough, if he wasn’t he would stay in the hospital, and not threaten the nurse with a switchblade.Two-bit is talking about

Dally getting in a fight, if he doesn’t have a fight he’ll be fine, Two-bit says, “...Tim'll fight fair if Dally don't pull a blade on him….”(27). This proves Dally is tough because, Two-bit talks about Dally getting in a fight like it’s normal, I infer that means Dally gets in lots of fights, stereotypically, tough people get into a lot of fights.



   

    Being insecure, lead to Dally’s down-fall. Dally’s reaction when Johnny dies is full of emotion, showing his insecurity when dealing with change. His actions when dealing with Dally’s death is, “...Whirling suddenly, he slammed back against the wall. His face contracting in agony, and sweat streamed down his face.” (153-154). This shows he is insecure because, after Johnny’s death he is in a state of shock and denial, he then whirls against the wall, while Pony sits there in shock. The  after effects of Johnny’s death led Dally to rob a bank knowing the cops would kill him when he pulls a heater on them. As Dally does this, Pony thinks, “Dally raised the gun, and I thought: You blasted fool. They don’t know you’re only bluffing. And even as the policemen’s guns spit fire into the night I knew that was what Dally wanted”(131). This is proof that Dally is insecure because, most secure people wouldn’t rob a bank and then pull an unloaded gun out at the police.All of this proves that Dally is insecure.


    All of these points show that, through being, hot-headed, tough, and insecure. Dally isn’t able to adapt to change, which lead to his downfall. Dally and Johnny dying shows that everyone takes change differently, not everyone just sits there is shock and grief.

  

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