Study Guide

Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk Dissatisfaction

By Ben Fountain

Dissatisfaction

Billy has been through a lot. In Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk, he's seen hell on earth and come back to America for his victory tour, but all he can focus on is how dang disappointed he is in everything. The Cowboys' stadium gets compared to a beached whale. The Cowboys themselves are described as if they look like Sloth from The Goonies. Billy gets this close to Beyoncé, but he's too busy hating the halftime show to get any satisfaction from his brush with fame.

But it's Billy's dissatisfaction that shows his emotional growth. He finally realizes what's important in life—and how backwards America's priorities are.

Questions About Dissatisfaction

  1. What are some of the things Billy hates now that he's back in the States?
  2. Was Billy this disappointed with everything before he went to war? Can you think of examples of dissatisfaction from his life before he joined?
  3. Are there any characters that are as dissatisfied with things as Billy? Who, and why?

Chew on This

Dissatisfaction and the ability to see the worst in all situations are just parts of Billy's nature.

Billy is unhappy with so many things as a direct result of his disillusionment after going to war. It's just a phase, and he'll grow out of it.

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