Characters in I’m the King of the Castle


  • Misfit, lonely, insecure, ordinary- the kind whose name people forget. Doesn’t belong anywhere.
  • Constantly afraid, ashamed of himself and his mother, embarrassed, defeatist, helpless, fatalist…‘Kingshaw felt only a dull sense of inevitability.
  • Afaid of his own capacity for violence: ‘Kingshaw wanted to hit him and hit him and then he was frightened at the way Hooper made him feel like this.’
  • Evertything is a hurdle. Has real and imaginary fears but never over comes them.
  • Wet!
  • Extreme sensitivity.
  • It did not occur to Kingshaw to question the truth of it. He tried not to think of his own fears to come.’
  • Finds his problems hard to vocalise. This alienates him.
  • Isolated. Uneasy and unsatisfactory relationship with his mother.
  • He wanted to go to his mother…he never did go to her, he made himself cope alone…
  • Inarticulate – acts as a barrier; therefore it is not surprising that when he does open up the adults do not believe him.
  • Solitary yet wanted a friend of his own desperately.
  • Liked to be alone – e.g. the room.
  • Feels inferior.
  • Sound moral sense – difficulty killing and abhors violence.
  • Lacks confidence:
  • If he had been vindictive… but he was not.’
  • She had never known anything about him, he had never wanted it. He liked to keep things inside himself.’ Self-reliant.
  • Naïve and gullible – believes what he is told.
  • He got on with most people… he was too vulnerable to let himself indulge in the making of enemies.



  • Self-confident – arises from being materially richer and advantaged.
  • Pale – Like one of his moths.
  • Shorter than Kingshaw.
  • Looked older than K though not.
  • Callous
  • Manipulative
  • Cold
  • Solitary
  • Misfit
  • Vindictive and cruel – Evil??? ‘As soon as the idea had come into his head, it had filled him with excitement…He could not have imagined the charm it afforded him, having Kingshaw here, thinking of things to do to him.
  • Uneasy and unsatisfactory relationship with his own father.
  • Unemotional – unmoved by his grandfather’s death. Scant respect for father. Bullies his father –stares him out. Points up his father’s inability to deal with his son. Despises father.
  • Not a practised bully. Tormenting K was an experiment. Gradually pushes K further and further.
  • At the end he feels ‘ a spurt of triumph.’
  • He is a coward – has his own fears.
  • Snob


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