A Whale vs A Fly Matthew munoz


Whale Talk by Chris Crutcher

The story Whale Talk by Chris Crutcher is told through the eyes of a teenage boy name The Tao Jones, (T.J. for short) A talented and gifted athlete who despises high school athletics for their affiliation with creating jocks and bullies. His English teacher, Mr. Simet, approaches T.J. to ask him about helping to create a swim team for Cutter High. Mr. Simet does not want to be a wrestling coach this year, so finally he gets T.J. to agree. T.J. sets out to create a team consisting of social rejects in order to prove a point to one of the biggest bullies at his school and star quarterback, Mike Barbour.

Lord of the Flies by William Golding

The story begins when A plane carrying a group of British schoolboys is shot down over the Pacific. The pilot of the plane is killed, but many of the boys survive the crash and find themselves deserted on an uninhabited island, where they are alone without adult supervision. The first two boys introduced are the main protagonists of the story, Ralph is one of the oldest of the boys, handsome and confident, while Piggy, as he is derisively called, is an asthmatic boy with glasses who is very intelligent . Among these boys is Jack an aggressive boy who is the head of another group of boys referred to as the "Choir Boys."

Both stories deal with two groups of boys, with a leader trying to achieve a goal. For Ralph, his main goal is to be rescued. Ralph is challenged throughout the book by the antagonist of the story, Jack who basically sets out to hunt and kill Ralph in order to seek power. For T.J. his main goal is to get his team letter man jackets. The swim is hated on by mainly the bullies which include some of the star football athletes that already earned their jackets. Despite being an underdog they learn to overcome the hate and grow together as a team.


The themes found in Whale Talk reflect adolescents' struggle to overcome extreme obstacles and tragedies in life and to develop personal worth. The main characters in this novel, the Cutter swim team, are those students who are rejected in high school because of mental or physical handicaps or as the result of bullying. As the main characters struggle to carve out a place for themselves, they demonstrate strength of character. They clearly demonstrate how compassion and generosity can help others overcome tragic circumstances. These characters also illustrate the need of all human beings for respect and dignity. Another important theme is that life is not fair and that the quality of life depends on what one is willing to take from life. Whereas the theme of Lord of the flies focuses mainly on civilization as explained further in the video below.

Character Analysis

Balthazar Getty as Ralph in the movie Lord of the flies(1990)

Ralph is affable, good-looking and charismatic. Aside from his charm, Ralph is also practical. Rather than seeing the island as a playground free from any adults to make rules and maintain order, Ralph immediately begins to organize the boys to build shelters, start a signal fire and maximize their chance for rescue. Ralph uses resources to establish his leadership. ''Ralph had stopped smiling and was pointing into the lagoon. Something creamy lay among the ferny weeds. 'A stone.' 'No. A shell.' '' What they have found is a conch shell. Ralph sees it as a way to call the boys to order. The boys then elect him their leader.

Thao Jones (TJ)

T.J. is the main character in Whale Talk and is the narrator of this story. His name is The Tao (pronounced Dow) Jones, but goes by T.J. We see everything through his eyes. He is always watching out for the little guy and is extremely good at physical sports, all the teams wanting him to join, but he refuses. He does not like taking orders from other people, so he realizes he would not do well on a team. T.J. was adopoted when he was very young, about two years old. He is usually caring and helpful, except when it's dealing with people who are disrespectful or cruel such as bullies.

Both boys are the most mature within their groups. Ralph has stay mature in order to achieve being rescued. At any moment he can give into the natural instinct of savagery that take over some of the other boys but he has his eyes focused solely on being rescued. Tj has to focus on the teams success so that they can get their jackets. Despite the bullying he and his teammates receive he shows maturity when he continues to act like an adult and chooses to ignore the hate unlike some of his teammates.

Created By
Matthew MunozAguilar


Created with images by ChanduBandi - "A humpback Hello" • uzumewinter - "Authors to Alaska luncheon Chris Crutcher" • summonedbyfells - "JOHN CAREY SIGNS: THE RELUCTANT PROFESSOR: (READING IS FREEDOM)"

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