Gale Hawthorne definitely got left out in the lurch from the love triangle in The Hunger Games. When Katniss Everdeen went off with Peeta Mellark, Gale was the one who got left behind. However, that did not stop fans from rallying behind this fantastic (and perhaps underrated) character.
Despite being less of a protagonist than either Peeta or Katniss, Gale’s fictional history is interesting. As a matter fact, there is probably a lot about his character that not even the most ardent fan of The Hunger Games knows. Read on if you want to learn (or remember) a few things about Gale Hawthorne.
10 He Is Over Six Feet Tall
Picking an actor like Liam Hemsworth to play Gale Hawthorne in The Hunger Games movie franchise was not a bad idea. The Australian actor is 6’3” in height, and that is accurate to Gale’s description in the books. Gale is known to be over six feet tall. Katniss describes him as towering over her when they stand next to each other. Supposedly, he was nearing 6 feet when he was only fourteen years old. That’s quite a height for such an age. He must have been absolutely intimidating when he and his fellow students lined up for school.
9 His Father Died In The Same Accident That Killed Katniss’ Dad
Katniss’ tough demeanor was born from having to care for her family by herself when her father was killed in a mining accident. Part of the reason for her closeness with Gale is from this shared experience. Gale’s father perished in the very same mining accident that killed Katniss’. He too had to take on the role of provider for his family afterward. It only makes sense that the two would bond not only from the emotional connection of such a tragedy, but from a practical standpoint as well. Working together allowed them to provide for their respective families better.
8 He Is Two Years Older Than Katniss
Despite similar appearances and a proclivity to stick together, Katniss and Gale are separated by two years. In other words, Gale is two years’ Katniss’ senior. Before they decided to hunt together in the woods to provide for their families, Katniss only knew of Gale as an upperclassman.
She had glimpsed him from time to time while at school. This relatively small gap in their ages did not stop them from hanging out with each other. Their friendship was natural and easy for them both.
7 He Is The One Mainly Responsible For District 12’s Survival
Gale is only one man, but he was able to protect what was left of District 12’s population after the bombing of his home almost single-handedly. While Katniss was battling it out in the Quarter Quell, Gale had to flee from his home with hundreds of people. While in the woods, he was able to catch enough food for the large group to subsist on for a few days. After a bit, people from District 13 came to the rescue, leading Gale and his fellows back to the reclusive district. Even though Gale was only one man, he was enough to ensure his district’s survival.
6 He Is The Oldest Of His Siblings
Gale’s family is larger than Katniss’. Where she has her mother and younger sister to feed after her father’s death, Gale has his mother and three other younger siblings, too. Gale is the oldest child in the family, so he takes it upon himself to care for the rest. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Gale Hawthorne is an older sibling. His protective and proactive nature make him an obvious older brother. His brothers and sister should consider themselves lucky to have a brother like him.
5 He Helped Beetee Make Military Weapons
Beetee is considered the genius of The Hunger Games series. He figures out the workings of the Quarter Quell’s arena in Catching Fire and he helps District 13 construct weapons in Mockingjay. However, what fans often miss is the fact that Gale helped Beetee in his weapon designs. When the two were both residing in District 13, they helped the rebellion by building new weapons for them. It wasn’t just Beetee on his own. Gale is an intelligent man, who used his knowledge of hunting, snares, and traps to assist Beetee in his work.
4 He Was The One Who Taught Katniss About Snares
In the first Hunger Games, Katniss stands out from the other Tributes because she was a good knowledge base on how to hunt for food. She uses snares to catch prey when she’s on the run in the arena. However, she didn’t learn this knowledge on her own. Most of what she knows about snares comes from Gale.
She was mostly good at hunting with a bow and arrow before she met him. He was the one who imparted a thorough understanding of traps to her. Lucky he did, because those skills kept her from starving in the first Hunger Games.
3 He Is Potentially Responsible For Prim’s Death
Gale’s knowledge of snares made him an invaluable asset when it came to designing weapons for the rebellion. Unfortunately, it was the design of one of his bombs that ended up killing Katniss’ sister, Prim. Gale even confessed to Katniss that it may have been a bomb he built with his own hands. This information forever severs the connection that Gale and Katniss shared. If there is one thing Katniss could never forgive, it was the death of her beloved little sister. And knowing there was a slight possibility that Gale’s weapon was responsible for it made her distrust him forever after.
2 He Helped To Buy Prim Her Goat
To make matters worse, Gale honestly cared for Prim. When Katniss was selected at the Reaping, Gale stayed behind and cared for her family as well as his. Beyond just a friendly obligation, however, Gale did truly look after Prim. When he and Katniss hunted their first deer, he insisted on going with Katniss to purchase Prim her very own nanny goat with their earnings from selling it. He even insisted on going back to Katniss’ house with the goat so that he could see Prim’s reaction to receiving the present.
1 He Moved To District 2 After The War
Since The Hunger Games series focuses on Katniss and her perspective, not much is known about what happened to Gale after the war with the Capitol was over. She ended up with Peeta and had children, but what about Gale? What we do know is that he moved to District 2 to assist in the formation of a new government. He became a military leader of sorts. It’s unclear whether he ever reestablished the same level of friendship with Katniss after the death of Prim.
NEXT: The Hunger Games: Every Main Character, Ranked By Intelligence