I think it’s a universal experience that every girl who reads Little Women, or who encounters the 1994 movie version, unconsciously sorts themselves into one of the four Little Women character types. Before anyone self-identified as a Samantha, they were an Amy. Before anyone sorted themselves into Ravenclaw, they were a Jo. The original “Lawful Good to Chaotic Evil” spectrum ran right from Beth to Amy. Louisa May Alcott created the first great personality quiz, and that’s that about that.
Greta Gerwig’s 2019 adaptation does nothing to dilute the timeless appeal of the four March girls. The joy of relating to these little women—and all of their supporting characters—is as real as ever. But it’s not always easy to identify which member of the Little Women story represents you most; I, for example, identify as an Aunt March with a Meg rising. It gets complicated. So to help you narrow down which Little Women character you are, I’ve assembled a series of character analyses that will help you figure out whether you’re a Jo or an Amy, or even a Laurie or a Laura Dern.
Personality traits: Well-behaved, mature, elegant, occasionally frivolous, naturally romantic
Defining moment: Getting a little too turnt at a cotillion ball
Meg is the eldest March sister, and let’s just get this out of the way—she’s the most boring one. Emma Stone was initially cast as Meg in Gerwig’s version before being replaced with Emma Watson, and frankly, Watson’s girl-next-door beauty and bland likability suit the character to a T. No one reads Little Women and wants to be Meg, but I think most of us have more in common with her than we’d like to admit.
Are you Meg March?
· Are you the oldest of your siblings?
· Have you ever lost significant amounts of hair due to heat styling?
· Have you ever overpaid for a dress you know you don’t need?
· Have you ever gone to a party, gotten a little drunk, and done some things you regret?
· Did you once dream of a career on the stage before settling down into a mediocre existence with a mediocre guy?
· Did you get married outside and force your wedding party to wear flower crowns?
If you answered “yes” to more than 60 percent of these questions, I’m sorry, but you are Meg March. We stan a relatable queen.
Personality traits: Smart, sassy, imaginative, stubborn, hot-tempered, independent
Defining moment: Chopping off her hair to fund Marmee’s train ride
Jo is the main character of Little Women and typically the most popular of the March girls. Saoirse Ronan’s Jo is just as tomboyish and strong-willed as past portrayals, constantly windswept and getting into trouble of some sort. Her need for independence serves as a blessing and a curse throughout the movie, as she turns down Laurie’s proposal and Friedrich’s constructive criticism, but ultimately sees the value in both relationships. The only downside to Saoirse’s Jo? She’s a blond, going strictly against the canonical description of Jo as a brunette in Alcott’s books. (It is a dirty kind of blond, though, so I suppose I’ll allow it.)
Are you Jo March?
· Are you a blond with brunette energy?
· Are you ambidextrous?
· Have you ever forgotten to save a Word Doc and immediately lost all will to live?
· Relatedly, have you ever been filled with an urge to murder a younger sibling?
· Have you ever friend-zoned the guy next door?
· Have you ever regretted a spontaneous haircut?
· Have you ever been attracted to a hot professor?
· Have you ever turned against that professor as soon as he critiqued your work?
If you answered “yes” to more than 60 percent of these questions, you’re a Jo March. Don’t worry, hair grows back.
Personality traits: Kind, sweet, soft-spoken, shy, musically gifted, consistently ill
Defining moment: I mean ...
On paper, Beth kind of seems like a buzzkill. She’s constantly reminding her sisters to mind their mother, pray for their father, and stop fighting or arguing. But in the new Little Women, Eliza Scanlen’s Beth is a genuine delight. She’s the gentlest, sweetest thing (anyone used to seeing Scanlen as a teenage murderer in Sharp Objects is in for a surprise). Beth spends the first half of the film happily coexisting with her sisters, playing the piano, and bonding with her elderly neighbor Mr. Laurence. Unfortunately, she also spends a lot of time helping the impoverished Hummel family next door, which leads to her demise as she comes down with scarlet fever. Poor dear, sweet Beth—truly too good for this world. As a result, she is perhaps the least relatable of the March sisters.
Are you Beth March?
· Are you crushingly shy in the presence of anyone outside your family?
· Do you prefer playing music to talking to people?
· Would you rather hang out at home than go out and socialize?
· Are you deeply religious?
· Do you feel a moral need to help others less fortunate than yourself?
· Do you welcome your impending death with a warm heart and open arms?
If you answered “yes” to more than 60 percent of these questions, you’re a Beth March. Honestly, though, you’re probably not a Beth March.
Personality traits: Vain, selfish, ambitious, spontaneous, artistic, witty, a little chaotic
Defining moment: Burning Jo’s manuscript one page at a time like an absolute savage
Amy is the youngest of the family and the only canonical blond, which sort of tells you everything you need to know. Depending on the adaptation, Amy is either obnoxious or just a straight-up villain. But Florence Pugh’s Amy steals this particular show, inserting a healthy dose of humor and self-assuredness to the character. Amy goes through quite the transformation in Little Women, from causing trouble in middle school to wowing the Parisian art scene with new husband Laurie in tow. Through it all, she manages to be endearing and hilarious. We should all be so lucky to be this Amy.
Are you Amy March?
· Do you have lovely small feet?
· Are you self-conscious about your nose, despite also having a lovely small nose?
· Are you the baby of your family?
· Have you ever had a thing for your older sister’s boyfriend?
· Did you have a habit of doodling in class?
· Did you take a gap year to study abroad?
· Have you ever run into someone from your childhood and wowed them with your glow-up?
If you answered “yes” to more than 60 percent of these questions, you’re an Amy March. Congrats on your feet.
Theodore “Laurie” Laurence
Personality traits: Charming, witty, sharp, a little needy, with slight fuckboy tendencies
Defining moment: Tie between March Sister Proposal No. 1 and March Sister Proposal No. 2
Ahh, Laurie Laurence, the OG fuckboy with a heart of gold. Laurie is, in every adaptation, a rich orphan who falls madly in love with Jo only to get rejected and move on with Amy later in life. Very few of those qualities are inherently likable, and yet Laurie is so charming and fun that it doesn’t matter. He’s the only boy who can really stand up to all these girls and come off all the better for it. In the new Little Women, Timothée Chalamet’s Laurie is as gawky and awkward as he’s ever been, which makes him that much more endearing. Timmy, go get your girls. You’ve earned it.
Are you Laurie?
· Do you deflect with humor instead of confronting your deep-seated emotional trauma?
· Have you ever wished you could just go live with your best friend’s family?
· Have you ever been truly, harshly friend-zoned?
· Have you ever rebounded with someone extremely close to the person who friend-zoned you?
· Do you just really love a good cravat?
If you answered “yes” to more than 60 percent of these questions, you’re a Laurie. I get it, I, too, want to marry both Saoirse Ronan and Florence Pugh.
Personality traits: Generous, loving, patient, determined, eternally optimistic
Defining moment: Asking her daughters to donate their Christmas breakfast to the struggling family next door
You can’t not love Marmee—she’s the rock that the March girls lean on throughout their lives. She holds down the house while her husband fights in the Civil War, which in itself would be tough enough. But she’s also constantly volunteering her time and efforts to help everyone from the Hummels to soldiers in need. Laura Dern, please adopt me.
Are you Marmee?
· Are you a natural leader?
· Have you been cursed with a nickname that you absolutely cannot shake?
· Have you spent years perfecting the art of being patient in the face of extreme stress?
· Are you good in a crisis?
· Are you madly in love with Bob Odenkirk?
If you answered “yes” to more than 60 percent of these questions, you’re a Marmee. Say hi to Bob for me.
Personality traits: Being Bob Odenkirk
Defining moment: When he shows up in the movie and you’re like, “Oh, that’s Bob Odenkirk!”
Robert March is the patriarch of the family, a principled man who serves as a chaplain in the Union Army. And as it becomes increasingly obvious in the most recent Little Women, he is also Bob Odenkirk.
Are you Robert March?
· Are you Bob Odenkirk?
If you answered “yes” to 100 percent of these questions, you are Robert March. And also Bob Odenkirk.
Personality traits: Caring, dependable, patient, reliable
Defining moment: Keeping hold of Meg’s glove like a very sweet stalker
John Brooke’s biggest claim to fame in Gerwig’s Little Women is that he’s played by James Norton, who was doing the Hot Vicar thing in Grantchester long before Fleabag’s Hot Priest stole his thunder. This time around, Norton is doing Hot Teacher (one of several in this story, as it turns out) as Laurie’s dependable tutor, John. John meets Meg as she bursts into the Laurence library with the rest of the March gang to comfort Amy after her mistreatment at school. She leaves one glove behind, which John then keeps … forever? Certainly long enough to woo Meg, marry her, and ultimately forgive her for her more frivolous tendencies. He’s a little boring, but he’s a good dude in the end.
Are you John Brooke?
· Do you have a longstanding crush on Emma Watson?
· Do you spend a significant amount of time worrying about finances?
· Do you have one coat that you’ve worn for way too many seasons in a row but you got it on sale at Burlington, and it’s really reliable?
· Are you intimidated by your significant other’s family?
· No, really—are they just like, a little loud for you?
If you answered “yes” to more than 60 percent of these questions, you’re a John Brooke. Hopefully more work will come in soon.
Personality traits: Intelligent, kind, warm, a little too blunt for his own good
Defining moment: Accidentally negging Jo right out of his life (but then fixing it)
In the hands of a less skillful storyteller (meaning: someone who is not Alcott or Gerwig) all of the men in Little Women would be infinitely less charming. Friedrich Bhaer, an older professor who critiques Jo’s writing and tells her to get serious about her work instead of sticking to fun fantasy stories, doesn’t seem at first like a particularly successful love interest. But slap that character description on the distressingly magnetic face of Louis Garrel and it’s a recipe for greatness. Saoirse and Timmy are practically the Meg Ryan–Tom Hanks for a new generation of moviegoers, and it takes a deft touch—and an extremely good head of hair—to get viewers rooting for Jo and Friedrich to get together at the end. But root we do, and happy they are.
Are you Friedrich Bhaer?
· Do you think age is just a number?
· Do you feel like you could probably star in a shampoo commercial?
· Do you sometimes worry that people only like you for your hair? Or your accent?
· Do you have a tendency to insult the people you’re interested in?
· Do you make a lot of literary analogies?
If you answered “yes” to more than 60 percent of these questions, you’re a Friedrich Bhaer. Please drop your haircare routine.
Personality traits: Rich as hell, rude as hell, independent, judgmental, stubborn
Defining moment: Saying that she didn’t need to marry because she’s rich
Aunt March is 50 percent villain, 50 percent icon. Portrayed by Meryl Streep (doing her best Maggie Smith in Downton Abbey impression), Aunt March spends much of the story telling the girls to marry rich and shading the ones who ignore her advice. (So, most of them.) She’s a stone cold bitch, and I love her.
Are you Aunt March?
· Are you inherently suspicious of happy people?
· Do you feel the need to give advice to every young girl you come across?
· Do you love a good nap?
· Have you spent considerable amounts of time in Europe?
· Does dying rich and single sound like a pretty solid existence to you?
If you answered “yes” to more than 60 percent of these questions, you’re an Aunt March. I’m really proud of you.