William (Bill) Crichton
William (Bill) Crichton, the butler to the earl of Loam. Stuffy, honest, and efficient, Crichton has one complaint about his master: He is not contemptuous enough of his inferiors. While in England, Crichton believes that the established social order is absolutely correct. Stranded on an island, however, he believes in the natural selection of leaders. When everyone realizes how efficient he is, Crichton takes command; he is stern, fair, and almost regal in his deportment.
The earl of Loam
The earl of Loam, a peer of the realm and Crichton’s liberal master. In theory, the earl believes in the equality of all members of society. Once a month, he has his servants in for tea. When he has an opportunity to practice his theories in fact, he becomes an ardent believer in the supremacy of the aristocracy. When the yachting party of which he is host is cast away on a Pacific island, he proves completely ineffectual. For a time, he is his pompous self, until he realizes his utter incapability of leading the stranded party. After Crichton assumes command, the other castaways call him “Daddy,” and he seems quite happy doing odd jobs around the camp.
The Hon. Ernest Woolley
The Hon. Ernest Woolley, a nephew of the earl of Loam and a maker of brilliant epigrams. Ernest is a cheerful, egotistical young man about town with enough shrewdness to avoid work entirely. In London, he idles away his time making witty remarks. Soon after being stranded on the...
(The entire section is 631 words.)