See Mrs. Douglas
Cathy Carlson is Bryon’s girlfriend; it is out of his love for her and concern for her brother M&M that Bryon decides to turn Mark in for dealing drugs. Cathy is a shy, innocent teenager, who comes back from private school when she runs out of money. Unlike Bryon’s ex-girlfriend, Angela, Cathy does not get jealous and is a good influence on Bryon. This influence puts her at odds with Mark, who feels he and Bryon are starting to grow apart. This becomes more noticeable after Charlie dies saving Bryon and Mark and Cathy understands Bryon’s feelings of guilt, whereas Mark does not. Cathy worries that her brother, M&M, whom she loves very much, is smoking marijuana and, since he is so trusting, may end up taking LSD as well. She says that M&M is not happy because he gets so much harassment at home over his hair, and so M&M has started hanging around other places. Cathy is distraught when M&M runs away, and she and Bryon drive up and down the Ribbon every night for a week, looking for her brother.
After Bryon gets beaten up by the Shepards, Cathy comes to see him at home, where he lets her know he has got a lead on M&M’s whereabouts. When Bryon gets better, Cathy goes with him to the hippie house where M&M has been staying. She is horrified when she...
(The entire section is 2987 words.)
Want to Read More?
Subscribe now to read the rest of That Was Then, This Is Now Characters. Plus get complete access to 30,000+ study guides!
Themes and Characters
Bryon Douglas, the sixteen-year-old narrator of That Was Then, This Is Now, is caught up in a sequence of events that forces him to question his beliefs and relationships. As he examines his attitudes, he becomes more responsible, less willing to spend time looking for fights or parties, and less tolerant of his friend Mark's noncommittal, unquestioning attitude. Hinton portrays, Bryon as a complex character; sexist, unethical, and often violent, he resembles an anti-hero more than he does a traditional hero. Mark, the novel's other central character, is described in the first chapter as a friendly lion and in the last chapter as "an impatient, dangerous, caged" lion. This change reflects Mark's transformation from a happy-go-lucky kid who "can get away with anything" to a bitter juvenile delinquent on his way to the state prison.
Among Bryon and Mark's peers, the most important are M&M and Cathy. M&M is a thirteen-year-old hippie living "in a hood's part of town." He suffers ridicule and, occasionally, physical abuse at the hands of the "hoods." Although M&M is of above-average intelligence, his father criticizes his hair, his clothing, and the "C" he earns in gym class. M&M finally runs away and has a bad reaction to the drug LSD, which permanently impairs his mental abilities, changing him from a trusting, 1336 That Was Then, This Is Now innocent child into a cynical and suspicious person. Cathy, quite straight herself, is...
(The entire section is 844 words.)