Characters: West Side Story

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Tony

Former joint-leader of the Jets, gone straight. Riff's best friend.

Maria

Puerto Rican ingenue; Bernardo's sister

    The Jets 

Riff

Quick-tempered but zany leader of the Jets

Ice/ Diesel

Second-in-command of the Jets. Ice was a character created for the movie, but has been adopted in later stage productions. Takes over as leader after Riff's death
  • Ascended Extra: Has a few lines in the stage show and a decent amount of stage-time, but he's a lot more prominent in the movie to the point where he has what is effectively his own solo.
  • The Big Guy
  • Canon Immigrant: Originally was in the movie, but was popular enough to add in later theatre productions.
  • The Lancer: To Riff after Tony left the gang.
  • Meaningful Name: He's probably the most level-headed of the group
  • Token Good Teammate: Was not among the Jets who try Attempted Rape on Anita, though that could simply be because he wasn't there at the time (he'd gone to make sure none of the Sharks were on the prowl for Tony)

Action

The most quick-tempered member of the Jets, always ready for a fight.

A-Rab

Slightly less quick tempered than Action. Baby John's best friend
  • Expy Of Abraham
  • Parental Issues: Schrank taunts him by mentioning that his father is an alcoholic.

Baby John

The youngest Jet, who is beaten up during the opening sequence. A-Rab's best friend
  • Expy: Of Benvolio
  • Meaningful Name: Based on someone who's name is very similar to benevolent. Very tellingly, he's probably the nicest member of the gang.
  • Token Good Teammate: As the most naive and inexperienced of the gang, it's obvious he goes along with what they do mostly because he succumbs to peer pressure.

Snowboy

Joyboy

Big Deal

Tiger

Mouthpiece

Gee-Tar

The Girls

Graziella

Riff's girlfriend (Ice / Diesel's girlfriend in some productions)

Velma

Ice's girlfriend (Riff's girlfriend in some productions)

Minnie

Baby John's girlfriend

Clarice

Action's girlfriend

Pauline

A-Rab's girlfriend

Anybodys

A tagalong tomboy, eventually accepted into the gang after Riff's death (falls in love with Action in some smaller productions)

    The Sharks 

Bernardo

Maria's brother, leader of the Sharks

Chino

Maria's hot-tempered suitor, Bernardo's best friend. Kills Tony.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Questionable as to whether his motive to kill Tony is driven by the latter's relationship with Maria, Tony's murder of Chino's best friend Bernardo, or a mixture of both. Can depend on the production.
  • Anti-Villain: To an extent. While he spends the second act trying to kill Tony, he's got an understandable motive in that Tony has murdered his best friend and is in a relationship with his fiancee.
  • Expy: Of Paris

Pepe

Second-in-command of the Sharks

Indio

Loco

Jauno

Luiz

Rocco/Anxious

Toro

Nibbles/Del Campo

Chile

The Girls

Anita

Saucy friend of Maria and girlfriend of Bernardo.

Rosalia

Argues with Anita in "America"; Indio's girlfriend

Consuela

Pepe's girlfriend

Teresita

Loco's girlfriend

Francisca

Jauno's girlfriend

Estella

Luiz's girlfriend

Margarita

Toro's girlfriend

    The Adults 

Officer Krupke

An aggressive but inept cop

Doc

A weary old candy store owner

Glad Hand

The inept chaperone at the dance

Detective Schrank

A racist police lieutenant