Gale is a member of District 12 and Katniss’s closest friend and hunting partner. Like Katniss, Gale is the main provider of his family, as his father has died. He’s a tough, strong, and practical boy with a deep sense of loyalty toward his family and friends. After Katniss is reaped, he promises to provide for her family along with his own in her absence.

Unlike Katniss, however, Gale has a spark of rebellion toward the Capitol in him even before Katniss is chosen as tribute. He’s quick to anger, but that anger is often fueled by righteous indignation toward the system he lives in. Because Panem is a surveillance state, Gale is unable to speak his mind publicly, so he often shares his radical politics with Katniss while they hunt in the woods. Despite his young age, Gale is surprisingly perceptive and has a strong understanding of the political manipulations of the Capitol, which he accuses of planting “hatred between the starving workers of the Seam and those who can generally count on supper,” thereby sowing mistrust amongst the general proletariat class – a mistrust that would be better directed toward the Capitol.

Despite his awareness of the brutal reality of his circumstances, Gale is an idealist. He hopes for an insurgence and dreams of escaping the Capitol, even telling Katniss: “We could do it, you know . . . Leave the district. Run off. Live in the woods. You and I, we could make it.”