QUESTION: Describe at least one important character in the written text. Explain how this character is revealed to you throughout the text and/or how this character helps you understand an important theme/idea in the novel.
Introduction: In the novel ‘Hunt for the Wilderpeople’ the character Ricky Baker matures and changes throughout the novel. He moves from the city and ends out living on his aunties and uncles farm in the middle of nowhere to his uncle and aunties farm. There are many life changing events that happen throughout the novel. Firstly when he is moved from the city to the farm, secondly when aunty Bella dies and last of all when uncle Hec breaks his foot out in the bush. These events help me understand the themes of how Ricky matures and learns new skills.
At the start of the Novel Ricky Baker is a Mischievous boy that is always getting moved around to different foster homes but when he moves to his aunty and uncles farm he is loved and welcomed and we see the ‘new’ Ricky baker and how he changes when he is moved to a different and isolated environment. When Ricky gets moved to a new Environment he is welcomed by his aunty and uncle and they included him with a lot of things that they did which made him feel loved and cared for. For example she gave him a hottie each night and they gave him a dog, they took him hunting and got taught how to skin possums. Aunt Bella would use the metaphor “Lamb” to show her love to him and make him feel at home. In my opinion this was the definitely a very important event because it helped Ricky to want to start to push himself to do new things and feel comfortable and loved. This was very important to Ricky because he has never felt loved like that before.
Another major turning point for Ricky Baker was when uncle hec broke his leg by accidentally dropping a large rock on his ankle and then got crushed onto another rock. This meant that they were going to have to stay put in the middle of the Urewera for at least a few weeks. This meant that Ricky is going to have to take the responsibility of hunting and making a shelter for them. There are plenty of animals that are around the area but after a while Ricky has to travel further and further in order to get food for them to survive making everything a lot harder for Ricky Ricky quotes “We were out of meat by the time I went for my first hunt so I had to get something”. This shows the large amount of pressure that was put on Ricky. I feel that this event helped Ricky to mature as he was put under that large amount of pressure which benefited him as it gave him the skills to help him survive in the NZ bush. This event shows us how Ricky has to step up and mature. This helps us to understand the theme and idea of maturation.
Another major turning point in Ricky’s life was when Aunty Bella passed away. This means that the child welfare wants to bring Ricky back to the city and move to another foster home where it will be ‘more suitable home’ for Ricky to grow up in. Ricky had finally started to get on with uncle Hec and so he refuses to go back to the child welfare. This leaves him with one decision, To go bush. He eventually persuaded uncle hec to go. Now that they were going to get chased they had to be very cautious and would have a lot more responsibilities. Ricky quoted ” I’m not going back to child welfare”. This shows that Ricky will not give up fighting and how he knows that it will not be good for him to go back to his ‘old life’. I believe that Ricky making this decision helps him in many way, It makes him more mature, gives him useful life skills and also Ricky and Hec grow a very strong relationship that will last forever. This means he is yet again maturing.
When Ricky changes environments he changes from being a city boy that is getting into lots of trouble to being a knowledgeable young man that believes in himself. This was all because of uncle Hec and aunty Bella loving and believing in him and knowing that he can change for the better and have a happy successful life. All these events shows us importance of maturation.