Character Analysis Buddy Willard

Esther is only truly happy with Buddy after she finds out that he is taking her to the Yale prom. That coup and her need for a boyfriend seem to be her major attractions to Buddy. Because of Esther’s distaste for Buddy and because he comes to represent hypocrisy in men in general, and especially after he tells Esther of his summer affair with a waitress, his character is never developed fully. The reader sees him, for the most part, as a shallow, insensitive fellow, one who tries to initiate the innocent Esther into sex by suddenly undressing before her so that she can “see” a man. When he asks Esther if there is something wrong with him since both she and Joan Gilling (one of Esther’s girl friends) have attempted suicide, we see him again as an almost laughable figure.