These quotes show the continuous pattern of negative emotions Johnny feels whenever he is placed in new and unknown surroundings. Johnny’s sudden feelings are mainly caused by his previous unfortunate experiences and difficulties, specifically his brutal encounter with the Socs. Although Johnny faced extreme violence and severe wounds before, this experience made him realize that he couldn’t escape violence at all. This shock has forever marked Johnny negatively and caused him to feel the need to remain wary and untrustful. Additionally, due to this event, Johnny feels that his whole environment is violent and dangerous, causing him to lose trust in himself and others.
As a result, readers can observe that whenever faced with new people or situations outside Johnny’s comfort zone, reacting with these sudden emotions and transforming completely has become his way of confronting the unexpected change. Likewise, remaining quiet, restricted, or fearful has revealed to be Johnny’s approach to protecting himself from new individuals, as he quickly transitions from being caring and comfortable to becoming extremely agitated. Thus, due to previous experiences with the Socs, Johnny makes sure always to remain wary, attentive and prepared in new surroundings. In these quotes, readers can clearly notice the unusual amount of support and exceptions that Johnny regularly receives from his group, revealing that he is constantly dependant on others.
Johnny’s vulnerability and constant need to rely on others are mainly caused by the recurrent and violent encounters with his parents and Socs. As a result, these brutal experiences and Johnny’s unstable setting have stopped him from developing self-confidence. Without this significant factor, Johnny remains continuously insecure about his different choices and dependant on the protection from his group members, all of which demonstrates how his unfortunate events have impacted him negatively. Consequently, Johnny’s need to be defended by others also emphasizes his different weaknesses when faced with obstacles. In these quotes, readers were able to observe the inseparable connection Johnny has with the group, as each member has taken responsibility for him out of loyalty and solidarity.
In conclusion, the support and over-protectiveness the group provides Johnny with is the only way he has survived through his continuous hardships. In this section, readers were able to observe the slow progression and discovery of Johnny’s hidden bravery and protective side towards others. Due to his brutal experiences at being constantly beaten and violently affected, he can identify himself with other people’s difficulties and reacts quickly to injustices similar to his own. After sensing the dangerous and uneasy event between Dally and Cherry, Jonny immediately interfered and used his burst of confidence to stop the escalating moment. At this moment, readers were able to notice Johnny’s immediate need to react, therefore revealing his clear understanding and strong response to right and wrong. Likewise, his sudden bravery and harsh reply against Dally exposed an inner and hidden violence present in Johnny and his secret need to express it. However, Johnny has only released that burst of violence in attempts to protect other people when necessary, which has become his way of defending others and himself. All in all, Johnny has slowly revealed how his difficulties have influenced him to protect and react to others, therefore becoming his approach to expressing himself.
These quotes demonstrate that although Johnny has the whole group by his side, many don’t always understand his brutal experiences and the continuous obstacles he has to go through. Occasionally, members of his group forget the true hurt Johnny has experienced and the constant pain and misunderstanding he endures, specifically his brutal encounters with his parents and the Socs. Although other members of the gang face their own challenges, Johnny still hasn’t found ways to cope with his own severe and painful difficulties, differentiating and isolating him from the rest of the group. The constant pressure and pain Johnny carried couldn’t be seen by his group members, leaving him to maintain all the weight of the pain by himself. As a result, no one could fully comprehend the conflict and challenges Johnny is going through, therefore trapping Johnny in his own bubble of fear and loneliness. To conclude, readers can observe that the misunderstanding and solitude Johnny is facing is causing him to feel desperate and confused about his role in the group.
Thanks to these quotes, readers can notice the significant amount of assistance and dedication Johnny provides the group with, as well as his acceptance of his friends despite their mistakes. Whether it is defending and supporting his group members against the Soc’s misjudgment or protecting his friends from violent experiences, Johnny has always acted loyal and has spoken positively about his group. Likewise, remaining by Ponyboy’s side during his struggle with his siblings and the Socs clearly revealed Johnny’s strong commitment to his friends and his immediate need to defend them when necessary.
As a result, Johnny’s devotion and support for his group members have become his ways of returning the protection, concern, and friendship they constantly provide him with. In this way, Johnny is able to give back to his group members in small ways, such as remaining quietly by their sides and assisting them whenever he can. Thus, all of these examples represent that Johnny’s dedication to his group members is his return for the support they present him with.