A Memorable Character
Lennie Small is a character that I find to be distinct over any other. This character is different in many ways. He is innocent and kind hearted, like a baby in a sand box. Although Lennie is a very large man, he wouldn’t hurt a fly, at least not on purpose. The character Lennie Small, from the novel Of Mice and Men, is riveting in the sense that his mentality expresses that of a child when in reality, he is a grown man. Lennie is an enormous man with a broad frame and massive hands and feet.
His face is shapeless and unformed. His eyes, fidgety almost anxious. He has an innocent face almost that of a puppy. Lennie has long arms and legs that drag along his body wherever he goes. Lennie has a best friend, George, to help guide him and teach him right from wrong.
George can be compared to Lennie’s father or a guardian. Lennie can’t take care of himself. He needs guidance and to be watched so he doesn’t harm himself or anyone else. Lennie Small is a distinct character in various ways. For example, Lennie does things that kids would do. He doesn’t act his age.
In the onset of the novel, George finds out Lennie has been hiding a mouse in his pocket. Saying, “It’s just my pet George”. George notes that the mouse is dead and gets rid of it. However, Lennie doesn’t want to give it up, nor does he understand. He likes things that are soft and things he can pet.
This seems to get him in quite a bit of trouble throughout the novel. He truly has the mind of a child. Lennie is immature in his actions and innocent to his mistakes. He feels bad that George is always mad at him so he threatens to run away and live alone in the brush. He pleads to George “I can do it George I promise! I’ll go away.
” George knows that Lennie won’t survive on his own so he drags him along. Like a child, Lennie says the first thing that pops into his head. There is no thought process involved. It is for this reason that George tells him not to talk to anyone. George knows that the only thing Lennie is good at is lifting heavy things because he is so big.
Later in the novel, George lets Lennie have one of the puppies from the new litter, but only lets him play with it in the barn. George would bribe Lennie to be good and not mess this up or else he won’t get to “tend the rabbits” on their future farm. Lennie loved to pet the puppy and when it bit him he squeezed it too hard and it died. Like a child would do, Lennie tried to hide it from George because he knew he would get mad. George of course found out and Lennie was scolded.
In the end of the novel, Lennie accidentally kills Curley’s wife. He wanted to pet her hair because it was so soft and Lennie loves soft things. He began to pet her hair too hard. The woman screamed, “Stop it! You’re going to mess it up!” Lennie was frightened and didn’t know what to do so he just held on. He tried to quiet her but she continued to scream. Lennie shook her and accidentally broke her neck trying to get her to stop yelling.
The woman died and Lennie knew he was in big trouble. The audience feels sympathy for him. Usually, people don’t sympathize with killers but the audience knows he didn’t mean to hurt the woman at all. Once again this relates to a child because children are unaware of many things in this case, how they don’t understand why something is wrong until someone tells them. The character is so remarkable because he has such a different personality and mentality than anyone his age would normally have. He is more in the moment than someone who makes decisions based on facts.
This is why Lennie is an extraordinary character. He stands out in a crowd, both physically and mentally. It is the combination of both and the irony of his name with his body and his personality at that age that make his character so special.