Roland and other characters' appearance/wardrobe

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Slimybug

New Member
Oct 11, 2017
3
12
30
#1
Hey guy's I'm halfway through The Dark Tower 7 (not having read Wind Through the Keyhole yet), and I'm always thinking about how I'm supposed to be picturing the characters based on the description. But after seven books, I loose track of stuff. So I thought I'd form this thread and see if people could pool their knowledge of what characters' appearances are supposed to be like at various stages of the journey.
You'll also notice that the descriptions King gives are not always in line with the artists' illustrations.

So here's the quote from the opening of the first book, describing Roland's wardrobe.

"A hide waterbag had been slung around his middle...Below the waterbag were his guns...The two belts crisscrossed across his crotch...The stocks of the guns were sandalwood, yellow and finely grained. Rawhide tiedowns held the holsters loosely to his thighs, and they swung a bit with his step; they had rubbed away the bluing of his jeans (and thinned the cloth) in a pair of arcs that looked almost like smiles. The brass casings of the cartidges looped into the gun-belts heliographed in the sun... His shirt, the no-color of rain or dust, was open at the throat, with a rawhide thong dangling loosely in hand-punched eyelets. His hat was gone. So was the horn he had once carried."

I can't remember if he actually has his hat in the flashbacks to Tull or not. I'm also pretty sure that he is somewhere described as having short hair.

Here's the pictures from the book. I think these are all from the original edition, except for the cover, which is from a more recent paperback.

In spite of this description, the illustrations in the original book depict him very much with a hat, a red hankerchief around the neck, and even a vest on. Later illustrations, such as the cover of the most recent paperback, show him with long hair, a hat, and a trenchcoat. So yeah, illustrations are not always accurate.

Where I get confused is in later books. I'm pretty sure his hair grows back out, and at some point he gets a hat back, but he's not always described as wearing it.

Here's the images from book 2
, fairly accurate to the original description, with no hat and short hair, and a shirt that could be described as "no color."

Here's from book 3 and from book 5 where Roland is for some reason portrayed as wearing a blue denim shirt (and also starts wearing the cross that I believe is given to him in three). Still no hat, although he is definitely portrayed with one on in the illustrations for book 7

So yeah, if anyone can come up with any excerpts to describe what King actually intends the reader to think of Roland looking like, or the other characters too, that'd be great.
 

Slimybug

New Member
Oct 11, 2017
3
12
30
#5
....s'up?.....he still had his gunna, and could have easily picked up clothing along the way....he certainly couldn't wear the same outfit for all those miles....if he did, he wouldn't have needed the big guns.....the odor alone would have killed his enemies.....
I always imagined them just washing what few clothes they had in streams and such along the way, which would also be how they bathe. But yes, I suppose somewhere along the line they may have acquired an unmentioned change of clothes.
 

GNTLGNT

The idiot is IN
Jun 15, 2007
82,497
319,676
57
Cambridge, Ohio
#7
I always imagined them just washing what few clothes they had in streams and such along the way, which would also be how they bathe. But yes, I suppose somewhere along the line they may have acquired an unmentioned change of clothes.
...there's that for sure, I'm not taking anything away from what your espousing, just voicing my line of thought.....which is usually very short, and the train always jumps the tracks...:D
 

Slimybug

New Member
Oct 11, 2017
3
12
30
#10
In book 7, he must have lost his hat, he's not described with it on. After burying Jake in his shirt, he briefly wears a T-shirt before being given a new pair of jeans and a white button-up. Also, he's depicted with short hair in the illustrations.

Seriously, though, the picture of Walter is blatantly different from the description on the preceding page. How would an illustrator even gt away with something like that?
 

Neesy

#1 fan (Annie Wilkes cousin) 1st cousin Mom's side
May 24, 2012
57,423
212,766
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
#14
Hey guy's I'm halfway through The Dark Tower 7 (not having read Wind Through the Keyhole yet), and I'm always thinking about how I'm supposed to be picturing the characters based on the description. But after seven books, I loose track of stuff. So I thought I'd form this thread and see if people could pool their knowledge of what characters' appearances are supposed to be like at various stages of the journey.
You'll also notice that the descriptions King gives are not always in line with the artists' illustrations.

So here's the quote from the opening of the first book, describing Roland's wardrobe.

"A hide waterbag had been slung around his middle...Below the waterbag were his guns...The two belts crisscrossed across his crotch...The stocks of the guns were sandalwood, yellow and finely grained. Rawhide tiedowns held the holsters loosely to his thighs, and they swung a bit with his step; they had rubbed away the bluing of his jeans (and thinned the cloth) in a pair of arcs that looked almost like smiles. The brass casings of the cartidges looped into the gun-belts heliographed in the sun... His shirt, the no-color of rain or dust, was open at the throat, with a rawhide thong dangling loosely in hand-punched eyelets. His hat was gone. So was the horn he had once carried."

I can't remember if he actually has his hat in the flashbacks to Tull or not. I'm also pretty sure that he is somewhere described as having short hair.

Here's the pictures from the book. I think these are all from the original edition, except for the cover, which is from a more recent paperback.

In spite of this description, the illustrations in the original book depict him very much with a hat, a red hankerchief around the neck, and even a vest on. Later illustrations, such as the cover of the most recent paperback, show him with long hair, a hat, and a trenchcoat. So yeah, illustrations are not always accurate.

Where I get confused is in later books. I'm pretty sure his hair grows back out, and at some point he gets a hat back, but he's not always described as wearing it.

Here's the images from book 2
, fairly accurate to the original description, with no hat and short hair, and a shirt that could be described as "no color."

Here's from book 3 and from book 5 where Roland is for some reason portrayed as wearing a blue denim shirt (and also starts wearing the cross that I believe is given to him in three). Still no hat, although he is definitely portrayed with one on in the illustrations for book 7

So yeah, if anyone can come up with any excerpts to describe what King actually intends the reader to think of Roland looking like, or the other characters too, that'd be great.
Welcome to SKMB Slimybug
 

The Nameless

M-O-O-N - That spells Nameless
Jul 10, 2011
2,042
7,970
36
The Darkside of the Moon (England really)
#18
Hey guy's I'm halfway through The Dark Tower 7 (not having read Wind Through the Keyhole yet), and I'm always thinking about how I'm supposed to be picturing the characters based on the description. But after seven books, I loose track of stuff. So I thought I'd form this thread and see if people could pool their knowledge of what characters' appearances are supposed to be like at various stages of the journey.
You'll also notice that the descriptions King gives are not always in line with the artists' illustrations.

So here's the quote from the opening of the first book, describing Roland's wardrobe.

"A hide waterbag had been slung around his middle...Below the waterbag were his guns...The two belts crisscrossed across his crotch...The stocks of the guns were sandalwood, yellow and finely grained. Rawhide tiedowns held the holsters loosely to his thighs, and they swung a bit with his step; they had rubbed away the bluing of his jeans (and thinned the cloth) in a pair of arcs that looked almost like smiles. The brass casings of the cartidges looped into the gun-belts heliographed in the sun... His shirt, the no-color of rain or dust, was open at the throat, with a rawhide thong dangling loosely in hand-punched eyelets. His hat was gone. So was the horn he had once carried."

I can't remember if he actually has his hat in the flashbacks to Tull or not. I'm also pretty sure that he is somewhere described as having short hair.

Here's the pictures from the book. I think these are all from the original edition, except for the cover, which is from a more recent paperback.

In spite of this description, the illustrations in the original book depict him very much with a hat, a red hankerchief around the neck, and even a vest on. Later illustrations, such as the cover of the most recent paperback, show him with long hair, a hat, and a trenchcoat. So yeah, illustrations are not always accurate.

Where I get confused is in later books. I'm pretty sure his hair grows back out, and at some point he gets a hat back, but he's not always described as wearing it.

Here's the images from book 2
, fairly accurate to the original description, with no hat and short hair, and a shirt that could be described as "no color."

Here's from book 3 and from book 5 where Roland is for some reason portrayed as wearing a blue denim shirt (and also starts wearing the cross that I believe is given to him in three). Still no hat, although he is definitely portrayed with one on in the illustrations for book 7

So yeah, if anyone can come up with any excerpts to describe what King actually intends the reader to think of Roland looking like, or the other characters too, that'd be great.
Maybe it's because of the various artwork that depicts Roland the way you point out, or maybe it's because of the stereotypical image of Western gunslingers in various media, but I always picture Roland as looking like John marston from red dead redemption.



Wrong based on most descriptions but that's the only way I see Roland.
 
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