In a genre already rife with teens being thrown into life-and-death situations, who will emerge triumphant from the first round of Lit Madness?
Already familiar with infiltration and covert operations, Tally is a force to be reckoned with. Plus, after years of analyzing her flaws, Squint’s since learned how to use imperfections in her favor.
Four is Divergent, which allows him to embody the qualities of almost all of the factions: Erudite intelligence to outsmart his opponents, for one, and the bravery that comes with Dauntless. Of course, it doesn’t help that one of his four fears is killing people.
WINNER: When the Cornucopia opens, Tally nicks a hoverboard and Four follows suit. Chasing after Tally tests his fear of heights; balancing while fighting is more than he can manage. Tally flies away, victorious.
Lyra is a smooth talker—they don’t call her “Silvertongue” for nothing. Park should keep an eye out for this: If she can sweet-talk an armored polar bear, she can definitely handle Park.
Park is used to women who try to deflect through words (or, in the case of the girl he can’t stop thinking about, through silence). He’s set with his Walkman—set to play some Joy Division with the push of one button—to pit against Lyra’s alethiometer.
WINNER: Unfortunately, even Park’s best mixtape is no match for the truths divulged by Lyra’s alethiometer. All she has to do is ask a simple question—Where is Eleanor?—and Park suddenly has a bigger quest to escape the arena for.
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Seth is just super-excited to be here! Despite going rogue and starting the wolfpack, Jacob never lets Seth do anything cool anymore. Probably something to do with that dumb kid he spends all his time protecting.
A prodigy groomed for military leadership, June is terrifying. She’s ready to hunt, trick, deceive, lie, cheat, and steal to win.
WINNER: Poor Seth never stood a chance. Though he’s quick, he attempted to start the game off with a friendly handshake, and from there it was just too easy for June.
Charlie’s plan is to make Meg a great, angsty mixtape. He’ll then take her to a high ledge somewhere in the arena, and encourage her to close her eyes and “feel infinite.”
At first Meg sympathizes with wallflower Charlie, since, with her braces and mousy brown hair, she’d probably fit right in on his “island of misfit toys.” But where Charlie turned to music to cope, Meg traveled the galaxy fighting evil aliens. She also has no patience for moping.
WINNER: The only Charlie who could have any sway over Meg is her brother, Charles Wallace, and even when he was possessed by an alien entity, she held fast. She’s had plenty of experience feeling infinite, and wouldn’t wish it on anyone. She knocks Charlie out and continues on her way.
This is a no-brainer. Harry Potter is The Boy Who Lived. He survived a killing curse from the most evil wizard of all time—he can easily survive whatever teenage wannabe rebel Ponyboy could throw at him.
Ponyboy has had enough of Harry’s whining about his parents dying—he lost his folks in an automobile accident, so he gets it. It’s easy to be The Boy Who Lived when you’re not waging daily gang wars, you know.
WINNER: Fortunately for Harry, Ponyboy gets himself into trouble with his lack of common sense, by running headlong into the Cornucopia and getting taken out in the chaos of first few minutes. Maybe it has something to do with the empty bottle of felix felicis that Harry just tossed aside.
Let’s be real: Katniss has peaked. She’s past her prime. She’s already won two Hunger Games, and she’s getting complacent. On his way out, Holden calls her a phony and she snaps—he doesn’t know what it’s like, she always had the best interests of her family and her District at heart.
While Katniss does have a bit more practical experience in combat, Jonas has the memory of all war—and all peace in his body. All he would need to do is release a portion of his memories on human suffering into Katniss.
WINNER: Jonas lays one hand on Katniss and passes to her his happiest memory. Of course, that immediately has her thinking of Prim and their lives before the Hunger Games. And wouldn’t you know it, suddenly she’s holding the nightlock berries again, like the first time she was in the Games. When she lifts the berries to her mouth, she’s smiling.
A hunter who knows how to stalk her prey, Tiger Lily is very comfortable in nature and the wild of Neverland is not a forgiving place. She’s also is probably the most stubborn person ever and would outlast Allison by sheer force of will.
Already comfortable with scavenging for food and fighting for her life, Allie adapts quickly to life in the arena. As all the tributes rush the Cornucopia, she runs straight for the katana and tries to control her bloodlust.
WINNER: Tiger Lily uses her knowledge of nature to gain all resources and to seclude Allie in an area where food and shelter is scarce. She only needs to wait for nature to take its course.
Let’s cut to the chase here: Jack is a sociopath, and he enjoys killing. He “thrives” in situations where social order breaks down, and unfortunately, he feels right at home in the arena. He gets a little freaked out when he sees Ahab chasing Aslan with a harpoon, but he gets over it quickly.
Jack has all of the tendencies of a sociopath, but Hazel Grace has been studying America’s Next Top Model for years. She isn’t here to make friends, knows the tactics for making strategic alliances, and she’s perfected a fierce gaze sure to stop Jack in his tracks.
WINNER: Though she can’t run, Hazel takes advantage of Jack’s distraction to hit him over the head with her oxygen tank. She’s in to win. Okay? Okay!
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