In The Outsiders, chapter 7, why would Two-Bit think Johnny, Dally, and Ponyboy were heroes all long before they saved the kids?

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mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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The easy-going Two-Bit who provides much of the humor for the Greasers talks with Ponyboy after he is sent home from the hospital following his and the others' rescue from the burning church. Two-Bit comes over to the Curtis home and promises to stay with Ponyboy while the brothers go to work and attend to other responsibilities. While there, Two-Bit shows Ponyboy the article in the newspaper that describes him and Johnny as heroes for having saved children from the burning church. However, Two-Bit believes Ponyboy and Johnny and Dally were heroes before this incident for the following reasons:

  • Johnny

Johnny, who has a terrible home life, retains his good nature in spite of his unfortunate circumstances and the beating by the Socs. He defends Ponyboy when he is attacked by the Socs earlier. Always he has been willing to sacrifice himself for others.

  • Dallas

Although Dallas Winston has had a criminal record since he was ten, he loves Johnny and looks out for him whenever there are fights. When Ponyboy and Johnny come to him after Johnny murders a Soc, Dally gives them aid even though doing so could return him to jail. 

  • Ponyboy

A young sensitive boy, Ponyboy is always loyal to his friends, never abandoning them even if it jeopardizes his well-being. Ponyboy does not give up on a world in which he has been dealt with unjustly, having lost his parents. He still does well in school and is on the A team in track. Also, he loves his brothers, although things are difficult at times.

There was another column about just Darry and Soda and me: how Darry worked on two jobs at once and made good at both of them, and about his outstanding record at school; it mentioned Sodapop dropping out of school so we could stay together, and that I made the honor roll at school all the time and might be a future track star. (p.91)

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