The Outsiders Questions and Answers
by S. E. Hinton

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Who attacked Ponyboy in The Outsiders? What kind of car were they driving? What did they threaten to do? What was Ponyboy's reaction? Who rescued Ponyboy?

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Ponyboy was attacked by Bob Sheldon and his friends in a blue mustang.  Johnny rescued him by killing Bob.

According to Ponyboy, Socs drive fancy cars and jump greasers for fun.  Bob Sheldon seems to fit the bill.  He attacked Johnny before, and when he pulls up with a car full of friends he attacks Ponboy and Johnny.  Sheldon drives a blue mustang.

When Pony and Johnny are talking to Cherry, the blue mustang drives by and Johnny becomes frightened.  Cherry tells them that it is Bob and Randy.  Bob asks Cherry to listen to him.  Pony realizes that Bob is the one who attacked Johnny before.  He gets a glass bottle to use as a weapon.

Johnny was breathing heavily and I noticed he was staring at the Soc's hand. H was wearing three heavy rings. I looked quickly at Johnny, an idea dawning on me.  remembered that it was a blue Mustang that had pulled up beside the vacant lot and that Johnny's face had been cut up by someone wearing rings... (Ch. 3)

Two-bit does not back down as the Socs insult them.  He says he doesn’t care that they outnumber the greasers.  Cherry does not want a fight though.  She agrees to go with the boys in the car.  Pony tells her he would not have used the broken bottle.  He wants her to understand he is not a bad person.

Pony and Johnny accidentally fall asleep in an empty lot, causing Pony to go home late.  Darry is angry because he was worried something had happened to Pony, and they argue.  Pony talks back to Darry, and Darry slaps him.  Pony runs away, upset.  He finds Johnny, and Johnny does not need an excuse to run away from home.  He is used to being hit.

They go to the park, and that’s where the trouble happens.  The blue mustang returns, and this time Bob is drunk and not backing down. 

It was Randy and Bob and three other Socs, and they recognized us. I knew Johnny recognized them; he was watching the moonlight glint off Bob's rings with huge eyes. (Ch. 4)

Bob is angry about having seen Pony with Soc girls, especially his girlfriend Cherry.  He attacks Pony, telling him he needs a bath.  Johnny kills Bob as he is trying to drown Pony in a fountain.  Johnny had a switchblade, and he used it to protect Pony.

Johnny is horrified by what he has done.  He saved Pony’s life, but he can hardly believe he killed Bob.  Johnny has post-traumatic stress disorder from being jumped by the Socs, and the entire incident was too much for him.  This event is the turning point in both of their lives.

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