Freak the Mighty Questions and Answers
by Rodman Philbrick

Freak the Mighty book cover
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Can you compare and contrast Freak and Mighty's characteristics in Freak the Mighty? What are the similarities and differences in Freak's and Mighty's characters?

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Freak the Mighty is a story of opposites attracting.  Two young boys are so different that it turns out they have quite a lot in common.

The largest differences between Freak and The Mighty are physical.  Both have damage, so they combine to be one creature: Freak the Mighty.  Kevin is the “freak” in the equation, because of his birth defects.  Kevin is “a very smart boy with a growth condition” (enotes character list). The “mighty” is Max, “a large boy being raised by his grandparents” (enotes character list). Max feels dumb, but he is physically strong.  Max thinks his friend is a bit unusual.

That’s the summer I grew so fast…[that] barefoot summer when I fell down a lot, and the weirdo robot boy with his white-yellow hair and his weird fierce eyes moved into the duplex down the block. (p. 4)

Max quickly realizes that they two boys used to know each other in day care.  He realizes Freak is very smart.  When they combine Max’s brute strength with Freak’s brains, they are unstoppable.  Alone, both boys are missing something.  Once together, they form a whole.

The similarities are what draws the boys close.  Each one feels like an outcast.  Each one feels powerless.  They each have vivid fantasy lives that are much better than reality.  Together, they can go “slaying dragons and fools and walking high above the world” (p. 40)

For a summary, read here: 

For a character list, read here:


Philbrick, W. R. Freak the Mighty. New York, NY: Blue Sky, 1993. Print.
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