Sodapop, sometimes called “Soda,” is the middle of the three Curtis brothers. He is energetic, disinterested in school, and movie-star handsome. Ponyboy describes his idolization of Sodapop from the very beginning, and says his brother “gets drunk on just plain living,” a quality he deeply admires. In contrast to his distant and tense relationship with Darry, Ponyboy’s relationship with Sodapop is one of admiration and intimacy. Both boys share a bed, and Sodapop serves as a symbolic security blanket for Ponyboy, especially since their parents’ deaths.
Sodapop’s happy-go-lucky personality easily masks his inner turmoil. After finding out that Sodapop is upset because his letters to Sandy went unanswered, Ponyboy realizes that he “never had paid much attention to Soda’s problems.” At the end of the novel, Sodapop is the character who finally unites the Curtis family, after he breaks down in tears over his brothers’ constant fighting. He reminds Darry and Ponyboy that they “ought to be able to stick together against everything” since they’re all they have left family-wise. The brothers agree to stop fighting so that they can stay together. Because of Sodapop, Ponyboy is able to look more favorably upon Darry, and realize how much his oldest brother has sacrificed for their family.