Before I Fall

by

Lauren Oliver

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Mr. Daimler Character Analysis

“The hottest guy at Thomas Jefferson is on the faculty,” says Sam Kingston, speaking about her calculus teacher Mr. Daimler. A former student—and one-time prom king—at Thomas Jefferson, Mr. Daimler is tan, tall, and he dresses just like his students do, in trendy clothes. Sam nurses a serious crush on Mr. Daimler, but it is a totally hypothetical one—until day five of the time loop, the day on which Sam, frustrated by the repetitious events of the day and her inability to change her fate, decides to lash out and act recklessly all day, knowing that nothing she does will matter. She flirts recklessly with Mr. Daimler during class, and oversteps a serious line—he holds her back after class to reprimand her, but when Sam tells Mr. Daimler that she “wants” him, he throws himself onto her, kissing her and pinning her against a desk. Sam is not turned on by the experience, though, and finally realizes what a predatory sleazeball her teacher is—unable to move on from his high school glory days, he roams the same halls he did as a teenager, stuck in his own kind of purgatorial time loop.
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Mr. Daimler Character Timeline in Before I Fall

The timeline below shows where the character Mr. Daimler appears in Before I Fall. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1 
Popularity, Status, and Social Capital Theme Icon
As Mr. Daimler, the calculus teacher, collects homework, Sam checks him out shamelessly. He is only twenty-five, and... (full context)
Chapter 3
Fate vs. Agency Theme Icon
Popularity, Status, and Social Capital Theme Icon
Cruelty and Loyalty in Friendship and Love Theme Icon
Rebirth, Renewal, and Redemption Theme Icon
...feel that everything is going to be okay. She flirts a little bit with Mr. Daimler, and after class, she knows that Kent will come up to her in the hallway.... (full context)
Chapter 4
Fate vs. Agency Theme Icon
Popularity, Status, and Social Capital Theme Icon
Cruelty and Loyalty in Friendship and Love Theme Icon
...Lindsay didn’t satisfy her urge to do something reckless. She arrives at calculus, and Mr. Daimler jokingly—but inappropriately—tells her that it’s “a little early in the season for beach clothes.” Sam... (full context)
Popularity, Status, and Social Capital Theme Icon
Daimler returns to his desk and gestures for the class to take their seats. As the... (full context)
Fate vs. Agency Theme Icon
Popularity, Status, and Social Capital Theme Icon
Rebirth, Renewal, and Redemption Theme Icon
...humiliation of “dumpster-diving” for them. As Sam prepares to walk back to her desk, Mr. Daimler remarks that Sam is breaking hearts left and right. She asks if she is breaking... (full context)
Fate vs. Agency Theme Icon
Popularity, Status, and Social Capital Theme Icon
Cruelty and Loyalty in Friendship and Love Theme Icon
Mr. Daimler orders Sam to sit in her own seat, and she returns to it. Throughout the... (full context)
Fate vs. Agency Theme Icon
At the end of class, Mr. Daimler reminds his students to study over the weekend, and sternly asks Sam to hang back... (full context)
Fate vs. Agency Theme Icon
Mr. Daimler asks Sam what she was thinking, but she replies that she doesn’t know what he... (full context)
Fate vs. Agency Theme Icon
Mr. Daimler hesitates, then walks up to Sam and begins kissing her, bending her backward over a... (full context)
Fate vs. Agency Theme Icon
Cruelty and Loyalty in Friendship and Love Theme Icon
Mr. Daimler backs off of Sam, and tells her that what happened between them needs to stay... (full context)
Popularity, Status, and Social Capital Theme Icon
Cruelty and Loyalty in Friendship and Love Theme Icon
...idea of ratting out Anna Cartullo after what she herself has just done with Mr. Daimler hilarious. She begins laughing, as the absurdity of everything begins to hit her. Once she... (full context)
Popularity, Status, and Social Capital Theme Icon
Cruelty and Loyalty in Friendship and Love Theme Icon
...too good for Alex, and Anna jokingly replies that Sam is too good for Mr. Daimler. After Anna leaves, Sam stays in the bathroom, very stoned. She spots two cigarettes on... (full context)
Popularity, Status, and Social Capital Theme Icon
Cruelty and Loyalty in Friendship and Love Theme Icon
...she collides with Kent, who starts talking to her—he tells her to stay away from Daimler, who is a “dirtbag.” He insists that Sam is too good for all that. Sam... (full context)
Chapter 7
Popularity, Status, and Social Capital Theme Icon
When it’s time for calculus, Sam arrives early—she is the first person in Mr. Daimler’s class. Daimler comes over to her desk and asks her if she’s enjoying Cupid Day... (full context)