A bullying bigot, Mr. Neck is Melinda’s social studies teacher, often singling her out for mistreatment because of her silence and sullenness. When his son doesn’t get a job as a firefighter, Mr. Neck goes on an anti-immigrant rant, and earns the anger of David Petrakis, who eventually ends up protesting him along with Melinda. To Melinda, Mr. Neck is the epitome of everything wrong with adulthood—he uses his power to hurt people, refuses to listen, and is blind to anything that contradicts his point of view.
Mr. Neck Character Timeline in Speak
The timeline below shows where the character Mr. Neck appears in Speak. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part 1, Chapter 1: Welcome to Merryweather High
...after hesitating too long as she looks for somewhere to sit, Melinda is reprimanded by Mr. Neck , her future social studies teacher. Another isolated student, who introduces herself as “Heather from... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 2: Our Teachers are the Best...
...freewriting time to mock Hairwoman. In social studies, meanwhile, Melinda is stuck with the bullying Mr. Neck . She comments that the school social studies curriculum is the same every year (American... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 3: Spotlight
Part 1, Chapter 4: Sanctuary
After lunch Melinda has art, which she calls a “dream.” In contrast to Hairwoman and Mr. Neck , her art teacher Mr. Freeman is friendly and open-minded; his classroom, meanwhile, is full... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 11: Burrow
...a stack of books, and adds that she “might even read one.” Melinda then evades Mr. Neck (also after missing homework), and stumbles upon an old janitor’s closet in the Senior’s Wing... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 20: Name Name Name
...comments that the Ecology Club is planning a protest because tigers are an endangered species . Mr. Neck , meanwhile, is furious about the protest, believing that it shows insubordination and a lack... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 5: First Amendment
Part 2, Chapter 9: First Amendment, Second Verse
...the students are rebellious, and David Petrakis is fighting for his freedom of speech in Mr. Neck’s social studies class. As Melinda watches, David turns on a tape recorder every time Mr.... (full context)
Part 3, Chapter 11: MISS
Part 4, Chapter 8: Gag Order
Part 4, Chapter 9: No Justice, No Peace
Part 4, Chapter 10: Advice from a Smart Mouth