John Smith looks forward to reaching the New World, because of the “hundreds of adventures that await… and I don’t intend to miss them!” He has been to dozens of new worlds, met thousands of people, and is still eager to engage with the environment, but needs Pocahontas to teach him to do so in a less-superficial way. Smith leaps into instant, fearless action at all times, running around a ship in the middle of a storm, plunging into the sea to save Thomas from drowning, telling his friends “Come on, boys, we didn’t come here just to look at [the land]!” He knows he is being followed in the woods, and confronts Pocahontas, but her beauty makes him lower his weapon. He slips out of the settlement to meet her, knowing it’s forbidden and that the governor has ordered anyone who leaves or fraternizes with the Indians shot. He assumes he can get out of any scrape, by somehow turning it to his advantage. Smith is friendly, personable, and eager to engage, but also somewhat clueless about other people’s feelings. In his excitement to tell Pocahontas about London and other places, he bluntly tells her that she only likes her basic life in the village here, and their houses, because doesn’t know any better as a savage. He is then confused when she gets upset with him, having taken this personally, and tries to smooth things over by apologizing. He easily helps Thomas much of the time, mentoring and inspiring him, and seeks peace among the Indians rather than violence, once she teaches him better. Being around Pocahontas makes him adopt her ways and beliefs. Smith prefers to take things at face value; he doesn’t understand what Grandmother Willow means by the “ripples” until Pocahontas explains them to him, and doesn’t see the bigger picture until it becomes evident, that the two civilizations need to work together in order not to destroy each other.

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Smith just wants an adventure, and has traveled all around the world to find it, never settling down, tying himself to a woman, or staying in a place too long. He quickly climbs off the ship and goes into the wood, treating its new people and creatures with humor and excitement. His song is all about craving adventure and looking for excitement, not wanting to miss out on anything life has to offer. Though cautious at first about Pocahontas, he quickly bonds with her, wants to believe the best of her and her people, and argues that the Indians don’t have the gold. He has a mild temperament, but is also decisive and rebellious. Smith sneaks away to meet her because he wants to, and isn’t afraid of the governor’s firm edicts or threats of punishment and death. He can’t stand by and let Thomas die for his mistake, so he tells him to run away, and chooses to take the burden of his punishment upon himself instead.