What is the problem, and who does it affect in Freak the Mighty?

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sciftw eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There are several problems/conflicts in the novel Freak the Mighty.  Most of the conflicts revolve around Max and Freak.  One problem is that Freak is dying.  He can't do anything about it, so he is constantly struggling with his outlook on life itself.  Freak is awesome, because even though he is struggling with knowing that he will soon die, his attitude is always positive and upbeat.  Freak's death though is a problem for Max who definitely struggles to come to grips with the loss of his friend.  

A second internal struggle is Max's struggle with his own self identification.  He has incredibly low self esteem.  He refers to himself as a stupid butthead quite often.  He's afraid of going out in public, because he looks like his murdering father.  Freak is the only character that is able to bring Max out of his shell, and through Freak, Max is able to begin enjoying life.  

One last major conflict is a man vs. man conflict.  Max's dad gets out of prison and kidnaps Max.  Max is afraid for his life, but he does eventually get rescued.  His dad, Killer Kane, is put back in jail.