Deacon King Kong


James McBride

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Haroldeen/Phyllis Character Analysis

Haroldeen, also known by her alias, Phyllis, is a young assassin Bunch Moon hires to kill Deems. Her assassination attempt fails, but she returns to Bunch anyway under the guise of collecting her payment. In reality, she is setting a trap for Bunch; when she leaves, she lets in Joe Peck’s men, who kill Bunch. Haroldeen hates the illegal drug trade because she was sexually abused as a child in order to feed her mother’s drug habit.

Haroldeen/Phyllis Quotes in Deacon King Kong

The Deacon King Kong quotes below are all either spoken by Haroldeen/Phyllis or refer to Haroldeen/Phyllis. 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:
Substance Abuse Theme Icon
Chapter 17: Harold Quotes

The waiting didn’t bother Deems, but the uncertainty of strategy did. Everything to him was about strategy. That’s how he’d survived. He heard that other big-time dealers called him a boy genius. He liked that. It pleased him that his crew, his rivals, and even at times Mr. Bunch marveled at how someone so young managed to figure things out on his own and keep ahead of older men, some of whom were vicious and clawing to get his business.


Page Number: 243
Explanation and Analysis:

Deems loved baseball. He’d pitched all the way through high school and could have gone further had not his cousin Rooster lured him into the fast money of the heroin game. He still kept track of the game, the teams, the squads, the statistics, the hitters, the Miracle Mets, who, miraculously, might be in the World Series that year, and most of all, the strategy.


Related Characters: Deems Clemens, Sportcoat, Haroldeen/Phyllis
Page Number: 243
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 22: 281 Delphi Quotes

They were horrible sons of bitches—men who set upon one another with welding torches, scorched each other with hot irons, and poured Clorox into one another’s eyes for the sake of dope; men who made their girlfriends do horrible things, servicing four or five or eight men a night, who made their women do push-ups over piles of dogshit for a hit of heroin until, exhausted, the girls dropped into the shit so the men could get a laugh. These were the men her mother allowed in her life.

Page Number: 309
Explanation and Analysis:
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Haroldeen/Phyllis Character Timeline in Deacon King Kong

The timeline below shows where the character Haroldeen/Phyllis appears in Deacon King Kong. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 17: Harold
Substance Abuse Theme Icon
...get away from his hectic life, Deems goes on a date with a girl named Phyllis. She is new to the area and has recently begun buying drugs from Deems. She... (full context)
Substance Abuse Theme Icon
Deems and Phyllis have a conversation on a pier that begins to turn sexual. Nearby, Deems has one... (full context)
Substance Abuse Theme Icon
Love, Hope, and Redemption Theme Icon
Before their conversation can go any further, Phyllis takes a gun from her jacket and shoots Deems’s bodyguard. She then turns the gun... (full context)
Chapter 22: 281 Delphi
Substance Abuse Theme Icon
...minutes making sure no one is coming for him, Bunch turns around to talk to Phyllis. (full context)
Substance Abuse Theme Icon
Phyllis, whose real name is Haroldeen, has come to collect her payment for killing Deems and... (full context)
Substance Abuse Theme Icon
Haroldeen doesn’t take kindly to Bunch’s attitude and insists on getting half of the money. She... (full context)
Substance Abuse Theme Icon
Finally, Bunch gives into Haroldeen’s demands and tells her where she can collect the money. He also tells her to... (full context)
Chapter 23: Last Octobers
Parental Figures and Masculinity  Theme Icon
...from. He asks Deems why he is so angry, and Deems reminds him that before Haroldeen shot him, Sportcoat shot him as well. Sportcoat responds by saying that he doesn’t even... (full context)