The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly of Big Liam O’Grady By: Charles Baker Maurice Walsh’s short story The Quiet Man introduces a few interesting characters, but one I found very intriguing wbas a man named Big Liam O’Grady. Big Liam was one of the main characters who played a huge role in the story. Big Liam may have played the “Bad guy” role in this story, but even the worst villains can have a good trait or two. From reading the short story, you notice that Big Liam really sticks with harrassing and provoking his enemy, Shawn Kelvin.
By continuously provoking throughout the story, showed perserverence. Big Liam Constantly was trying to get Shawn Kelvin to fight him, again and again at different parts in the story. For relentlessly trying to fight Shawn, and even during the fight, showed Big Liam’s perserverence. Another trait that helped pursue his perserverence was his boldness. Liam was never afraid to make a scene or put on a show. Big Liam was ready to fight Shawn in public in many encounters in the story, which shows Liam’s boldness.
Now, as we stated, Big Liam was the enemy of the story, and as most “Bad guys” have, are bad traits. Big Liam O’Grady was pretty much an all around bad person in general. Liam was conceited, very selfish, and had the temper to drive you wild. All big Liam thinks about is himself. He feels as if he could boss everyone around because of his size. Other than himself, the only thing he loves is money. Liam doesn’t share either. He feels the more the merrier should be the way of life for him. He goes crazy over two hundred dollars Shawn Kelvin throws in a fire.
Liam’s temper shows everytime he is around Shawn. He is practically a ticking time-bomb around Shawn. Big Liam thought of himself as the boss, and a tough guy, all because of his size. It describes Big Liam in the story as “A great raw-boned, sandy haired man, with the strength of an ox, and a heart no bigger than a sour apple. ” It’s said he was “A man of iron. ” His size and Strength was what made Big Liam who he was. Although Big Liam may have been big and strong, his weaknesses got the best of him. His money obsession controlled his life.
Big Liam could not love a woman, but could only love her money. As I mentioned, Liam falls apart when Shawn burns his money. His money weakness was uncontrollable. Also, although Liam was of great size, his actual fighting skill was weaker than that of Shawn Kelvin. Liam may have had power, but skill he did not. Kelvin’s experience and skill outmatched Liam’s three to one. As I’ve pointed out, Big Liam’s strength’s was his size, power, and intimidation factor. He was bigger than most, and definitely stronger than most, which made most scared of him.
He thought of himself as a “Tough guy” because people would cower in fear of him just for his size. Big Liam thought of himself the same throughout the story. Tough guy until the end. He was constantly acting tough and continuously wanting to fight. Liam was the same from beginning to end. I am sure, even though it is not stated in the story, Big Liam changed and matured once he lost his fight with Shawn Kelvin. I’m sure he realized that he’s not as big and bad as he thought he was.
Once losing what he thought was a sure win, he should realize that the world doesn’t revolve around him, and or money. The Quiet Man would not have been a story without Big Liam. Liam was the only true bad guy, troublemaker, and enemy, in the story. Big Liam caused the conflicts throughout, again and again. Liam brought the David and Goliath effect to the story. Big man loses to smaller fellow. The one with the sure size and strength advantage is out-witted by a smaller, more skilled intelligent follower. Without Big Liam O’Grady, this is no story.