Headscratchers / The Outsiders

  • How does Darry end up with his name while his brothers get Sodapop and Ponyboy?
    • One of their parents named Darry and the other parent named the other two?
      • No, it's because he was named after his father. He is, in fact, Darrel Shaynne Curtis, Jr.
    • Besides, who said stupid, way-out names for kids were the product of a rational person with a consistent approach to naming children?
  • How did Tom Waits get billing in the opening credits if he was only in one scene opening a door?
  • Johnny killed Bob to save Ponyboy. Why did the two run away instead of going to the police? If anyone should have been worried, it would be the socs. They tried to kill Ponyboy. It does not matter if the socs were upper class, the courts have to prove guilt beyond all doubt. There would be no proof that Johnny did not kill Bob to save Ponyboy. If they said Johnny murdered Bob in cold blood, it would be there word alone, which would not be enough. Since they were Bob's friends, they would not be unbiased witnesses, so their word would be taken with a grain of salt. What did Johnny and Ponyboy have to worry about?
    • Except, of course, that it's their word against the social elites of the towns who probably have parents with greater influence and funds than they do. At best, the police would have a hard time believing them and, at worst, they would put them in prison.
    • Their guilt would have to have been proven beyond any doubt. Money would not matter. At the end, there is a trial, and Ponyboy is found not guilty (and presumably the socs were imprisoned).
    • Innocent until proven guilty. Thing is, the set up can easily be spun into a bad scenario in a courtroom. Johnny's knocked around by his parents and hangs with violent hoodlums, one in particular, Dallas Winston. One night he takes his anger out on two "well-mannered, well-behaved rich kids who were in the wrong place at the wrong time." The quotation isn't true from the reader's perspectives, but it would look terrible in court. Because of the social divide between the two, the Greaser kids thought they wouldn't get a fair trial and debatedly, they wouldn't. It's hard to argue between kids who look and act like thugs and kids who hide their delinquency behind their money.
    • Also, keep in mind that Johnny and Ponyboy are still relatively young, pretty much kids, almost. Of course they're not going to think that maybe they can explain things to the police. Also, remember Dally was the one who told them to run away. Dally, the first person they went to, and the last person, Greaser or no, who would ever suggest that they go to the police.
    • Additionally, innocent until proven guilty doesn't apply here. Fact: Johnny did kill someone. His claim of self-defense is an affirmative defense, meaning that he has to prove that he was defending himself and his friend or else he goes to prison.
    • I think it's because Bob's Family was VERY connected and would've had Johnny punished. They wouldn't give a crap about the law.
      • After finding out their son tried to kill someone himself? If it were me, I would disown the brat for the rest of my life. What kind of normal parent would want someone punished for (rightfully) killing their (evil) child in defense of another person? If you had a child, and the bastard or bitch tried to kill someone else, and a person killed them to save their would be victim, would you want the person punished?
      • Keep in mind the differences in social class. Johnny was poor, came from a bad home, and was carrying a weapon, while Bob was well-connected and from an affluent family with a good reputation. You're basing this question on the idea that any court proceedings would be completely fair and balanced, but that's not really how it works. Even if it did, Johnny can't afford a lawyer, and it's unlikely that a public defender would win a court case against a more-experienced and more-expensive opponent.
      • Ponyboy won his trial. If he could do it, why couldn't Johnny?
      • Ponyboy was a local hero by the time he went to trial.