Freak the Mighty Chapter 2 Summary

Instructor: Kerry Gray

Kerry has been a teacher and an administrator for more than twenty years. She has a Master of Education degree.

'Up from the Down Under' is the second chapter in the Rodman Philbrick novel, Freak the Mighty. In this lesson, we will learn about Max's first encounter with Freak as they become neighbors.


Max's grandparents do not really understand him and have considerably low expectations of him, so it is just better for everyone if he stays in his room. Will Max's new neighbor bring him out of his isolation? During the second chapter of Freak the Mighty, entitled 'Up from the Down Under,' we will learn about the unique way in which Kevin (Freak) and Max first become acquainted.

Freak the Mighty
Freak the Mighty

Max's Basement Room

The cheaply-converted basement in Max's grandparents' house has become Max's own private 'down under.' He has no complaints about its condition because Max loves his privacy.

At least when he is there, he does not have to deal with his grandparents persistently worrying that Max is doing something dangerous. They don't even allow him to have slingshots or other things that boys his age have for fear that Max will hurt someone. Max thinks it is silly to think he is planning something because, in actuality, he does not use his brain at all.

As Max begins to anticipate Independence Day, he wonders where he can get his hands on some powerful fireworks. Supposedly, the M80 has the strength of dynamite and can make your heart skip a beat! Is that what Gram is worried about?

Freak Moves In

Max is killing time in his backyard when he sees the movers hauling things into the duplex that has been empty since the drug dealers that lived there got busted half a year earlier. He catches his first glimpse of the gorgeous Fair Gwen. She seems familiar, but he cannot place her until he notices Freak, the crippled midget, giving instructions to the movers. The men beg Gwen for relief from Freak, so she asks Kevin (Freak) to leave the men alone and go play in the yard.

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