Blood Brothers

The Narrator Character Analysis

All-knowing and always slightly menacing, the Narrator takes many roles throughout the musical. Sometimes he plays various parts (such as the Milkman), while at other times he watches the action and comments upon it. As the narrative goes forward, the Narrator constantly reminds the audience (and readers) of the terrible choice that began this chain of events, and warns us of the terrible acts that are to come. Despite his frequent mentions of fate and superstition, however, at the end of the play the Narrator claims that it was class, and not fate, that caused the tragedy that the audience has just witnessed.

The Narrator Quotes in Blood Brothers

The Blood Brothers quotes below are all either spoken by The Narrator or refer to The Narrator. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Class and Money Theme Icon
). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Bloomsbury Press edition of Blood Brothers published in 1995.
Act 1 Quotes

So did y’hear the story of the Johnstone twins?
As like each other as two new pins,
Of one womb born, on the self same day,
How one was kept and one given away?
An’ did you never hear how the Johnstones died,
Never knowing that they shared one name,
Till the day they died…?

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Mickey, Edward
Page Number: 29
Explanation and Analysis:

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In the name of Jesus, the thing was done,
Now there’s no going back, for anyone.
It’s too late now, for feeling torn
There’s a pact been sealed, there’s a deal been born.

How swiftly those who’ve made a pact,
Can come to overlook the fact.
Or wish the reckoning to be delayed
But a debt is a debt, and must be paid.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Mrs. Johnstone, Mrs. Jennifer Lyons
Page Number: 40
Explanation and Analysis:

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You’re always gonna know what was done
Even when you shut your eyes you still see
That you sold a son
And you can’t tell anyone.
But y’know the devil’s got your number,
Y’know he’s gonna find y’,
Y’know he’s right behind y’,

Yes, y’know the devil’s got your number

And he’s knocking at your door.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Mrs. Johnstone
Page Number: 48
Explanation and Analysis:

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Act 2 Quotes

Happy, are y’. Content at last?
Wiped out what happened, forgotten the past?
But you’ve got to have an endin’, if a start’s been made.
No one gets off without the price bein’ paid.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker)
Page Number: 63
Explanation and Analysis:

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And who’d dare tell the lambs in Spring,
What fate the later seasons bring.
Who’d tell the girl in the middle of the pair
The price she’ll pay just for being there.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Mickey, Edward, Linda
Page Number: 82
Explanation and Analysis:

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There’s a man gone mad in the town tonight,
He’s gonna shoot somebody down,
There’s a man gone mad, lost his mind tonight

There’s a mad man running round and round.
Now you know the devil’s got your number.
He’s runnin’ right beside you,
He’s screamin’ deep inside you,
And someone said he’s callin’ your number up today.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Mickey
Related Symbols: Guns
Page Number: 103
Explanation and Analysis:

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And do we blame superstition for what came to pass?
Or could it be what we, the English, have come to know as class?

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Mickey, Edward
Page Number: 107
Explanation and Analysis:

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The Narrator Character Timeline in Blood Brothers

The timeline below shows where the character The Narrator appears in Blood Brothers. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act 1
Nature vs. Nurture Theme Icon
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
Violence Theme Icon
...laments in song, begging the narrator and audience to “tell me it’s not true.” The Narrator, meanwhile, introduces the audience to the story of the Johnstone brothers, twins separated at birth,... (full context)
Class and Money Theme Icon
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
The Narrator, now playing a Milkman, rushes in to demand that Mrs. Johnstone pay him for the... (full context)
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
After Mrs. Lyons leaves, the Narrator enters. He lists various superstitions, from shoes on the table to spilling salt to breaking... (full context)
Class and Money Theme Icon
Coming of Age Theme Icon
The Narrator reenters, this time playing the Gynecologist. He listens to Mrs. Johnstone’s fetus’ heartbeat, and she... (full context)
Class and Money Theme Icon
Nature vs. Nurture Theme Icon
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
...will be taken away from her by the state. Mrs. Lyons is immediately intrigued—and the Narrator appears, commenting on how “quickly” Mrs. Lyons’ idea has been “planted.” As the Narrator exits,... (full context)
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
The Power of the Past Theme Icon
...on a Bible never to tell anyone about the bargain. The two agree, and the Narrator appears, telling them (and the audience) that it is now too late for the women... (full context)
Class and Money Theme Icon
Nature vs. Nurture Theme Icon
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
Coming of Age Theme Icon
The Power of the Past Theme Icon
The Narrator exits and the play moves to a hospital room, where Mrs. Johnstone has given birth... (full context)
Class and Money Theme Icon
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
The Power of the Past Theme Icon
Violence Theme Icon
The Narrator enters and once again sings about all the various omens of bad luck. He tells... (full context)
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
The Power of the Past Theme Icon
Mrs. Lyons enters, looking for Edward. The Narrator enters as well, and repeats his refrain, warning Mrs. Lyons that “gypsies” are going to... (full context)
Class and Money Theme Icon
Nature vs. Nurture Theme Icon
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
Coming of Age Theme Icon
The Power of the Past Theme Icon
...Lyons reacts with fright, sweeping the shoes off the table. As she does so, the Narrator enters, again listing his various bad omens, and adding that the devil is coming for... (full context)
Act 2
Class and Money Theme Icon
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
The Power of the Past Theme Icon
The conductor—played by the Narrator—tells the teenagers to get on the bus, but then turns to Mrs. Johnstone. He asks... (full context)
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
The Power of the Past Theme Icon
The Narrator enters, mocking Mrs. Lyons for feeling secure, and telling her that no amount of time... (full context)
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
Coming of Age Theme Icon
The Power of the Past Theme Icon
The two boys walk along as, unbeknownst to them, the Narrator follows them (along with Mrs. Lyons). Edward offers to lend Mickey money, but Mickey says... (full context)
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
Coming of Age Theme Icon
The Power of the Past Theme Icon
The three teenagers spend the summer together, as the Narrator illustrates (in song) the innocent, idyllic months that pass. The three go to a shooting... (full context)
Class and Money Theme Icon
Nature vs. Nurture Theme Icon
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
Coming of Age Theme Icon
As Mickey prepares to go to work, Mrs. Johnstone enters with his lunch. The Narrator enters briefly, explaining that it is a cold day in October, and ominously adding that... (full context)
Class and Money Theme Icon
Nature vs. Nurture Theme Icon
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
The Power of the Past Theme Icon
Violence Theme Icon
The Narrator refers to his usual list of bad omens, noting that Linda in particular is afraid... (full context)
Class and Money Theme Icon
Nature vs. Nurture Theme Icon
Coming of Age Theme Icon
The Power of the Past Theme Icon
Utterly alone, Linda moves to the telephone. As she does, the Narrator recounts her internal struggle in song, describing the “girl inside the woman” who longs for... (full context)
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
The Power of the Past Theme Icon
Violence Theme Icon
Mickey roams the streets looking for the couple, as Mrs. Johnstone chases him. The Narrator tells the audience that a man has “gone mad in the town tonight,” and that... (full context)
Class and Money Theme Icon
Nature vs. Nurture Theme Icon
Superstition and Fate Theme Icon
The Power of the Past Theme Icon
Violence Theme Icon
The characters freeze as the Narrator emerges, asking if we should blame superstition for the deadly chain of events, or if... (full context)