Something Wicked : Characters
J. C. Cooger
Mr. Cooger is the large, strong, red-haired partner of Mr. Dark in the Cooger-Dark Carnival. He catches Jim on the carousel and forcibly holds him until ordered by Dark to let him go. He uses the carousel first to become a young boy posing as Miss Foley’s nephew. When he tries to regain his adult status, Will interferes with the controls until he becomes ancient and dying. At that point, Dark uses him as Mr. Electrico in the freak show. He eventually blows away as dust.
Mr. Crosetti is the barber, whom Will intuits has died a victim of the circus when a sign is put on his shop that it is closed due to illness.
G. M. Dark (The Illustrated Man)
Mr. Dark, the antagonist-owner of the carnival, is a Satanic figure with tattoos all over his body that represent the souls he has enslaved and has made into his freak show. He controls them by flexing his muscles. He tempts the people of Green Town by knowing their desires and promising to fulfill them. He is after the boys because they have been spying on him and learning the secrets of the carnival. Will sees through Mr. Dark, while Jim is attracted to him. Charles Halloway sees how to combat Dark with positive emotion and love. When Dark becomes a little boy on the carousel, Charles literally kills him with love by holding him close until all his illustrations melt and the souls are released.
The Dust Witch
The Dust Witch is a blind fortune-teller with a sixth sense, able to sniff out people by their emotions. She is extremely dangerous in her various abilities, including weaving spells in the air to paralyze and kill people. She is a slave to Mr. Dark and rides out in her giant balloon to search and spy on the townspeople. Because she is sensitive, she can feel the positive emotion of Charles Halloway’s laughter, and is killed by his smile carved on the bullet.
Mr. Electrico is unveiled as a new act by Mr. Dark when the police come to investigate. He is the corpse of Mr. Cooger who died when Will jammed the carousel so it spun him forward until he became about 120 years old. Mr. Dark puts volts of electricity through him and wills him alive, making all the freaks breathe for him.
Miss Foley is the middle-aged seventh-grade spinster teacher of Jim and Will. She becomes mad in the Mirror Maze and wants to ride on the carousel to become younger. She becomes a lost little girl and disappears with the circus people.
Tom Fury (Dwarf)
Tom Fury is the lightning-rod salesman who gives a free lightning rod to Jim Nightshade to nail on his roof to protect him from the storm. He is tempted by the circus show exhibiting the most beautiful woman in the world in a block of ice. When he melts the ice to get her out, he is captured by Mr. Dark and made into a freak, a Dwarf, who hunts the boys.
Charles Halloway is the main adult protagonist, the father of Will, who saves the boys from the evil circus. Halloway starts out unhappy and worried about aging (he is fifty-four). He feels he is too old for his thirteen-year-old son and distances himself. He understands boyhood, however, and wishes he could be as free as his son. Halloway is initially timid and hesitant about life, having married late. He feels that life passed him by. He is the library janitor but reads until late every night in the library to educate himself. He is given to philosophical and poetic speech on the nature of life, which he teaches to the boys. He finds the courage to stand up to evil and defeat it through his intuitive and spontaneous understanding heart. An outstanding old-fashioned father, he finally bonds with and protects his son Will and foster-son, Jim.
William (Will) Halloway
Will Halloway is born one minute before midnight on October 30. He is blonde and full of innocent goodness. Though curious, he does not go after forbidden knowledge the way Jim does. He is full of respect and love for his father and wants his companionship. Will is sensitive and intuitive, understanding what is going on around him. He becomes courageous and active in fighting against the carnival and in trying to keep Jim out of trouble. He and Jim are like twin brothers. Will grows in the story, making a transition to young adulthood.
James (Jim) Nightshade
Born one minute after midnight on October 31, Jim is headstrong and determined to grow up as fast as he can. He is dark in color and gloomy because so many of his family members have died, including his father. He is attracted to evil and forbidden things and becomes an easy target for Mr. Dark. He always does everything with Will until the circus arrives. He wants to go to the circus alone because he does not want to be stopped by Will’s cautious goodness. He actually rides the carousel forward for half a year until Will pulls him off. He is saved by the love of the Halloways.