Gunner, Boyd, Preacher
|Rank||Technician Fifth Grade|
|Portrayed by||Shia LaBeouf|
Boyd "Bible" Swan (1917 - April 25, 1945) The surviving crew, who have been together since the North African Campaign, belittle the new recruit upon meeting him, for both his lack of experience and for his reluctance to kill Germans, especially the children of the Hitlerjugend; a decision which results in the destruction of Lieutenant Parker's tank and its crew. Wardaddy is furious and, enraged, forces Norman to look at an American soldier who committed suicide while burning alive. Wardaddy angrily screams to Norman that this is his fault but Gordo said that the youth did that not him. Gordo told Norman that he froze up too when he was his age and that's why he liked driving, he later said to that he has to kill Nazis because it's them or the Nazis. Later, in an effort to 'educate' him to the realities of war, he violently attempts to force Norman to take his weapon and kill a captive German artilleryman, who is wearing a looted American trenchcoat. When Norman refuses to do so, Wardaddy forces the gun into his hand and makes him execute the prisoner. Bible comforts Norman and gives him fresh coffee. Boyd said no crew stayed together like they have because of Wardaddy and told Norman that he did alright and points out that he spotted that 75. when nobody else could.
The bond between Norman and Wardaddy becomes stronger after capturing a small German town in which they saw riddled with hanged children displaying signs. Wardaddy reads the signs and translates them. They say that the dead children were "cowards" for not fighting for Germany. Wardaddy and the rest of the crew kill all the Nazi soldiers that have taken it over and Wardaddy realizes that most of the surviving soldiers who are surrendering are merely children being forced to fight. Wardaddy lets the children live but sees an SS officer and asks if he was the one hanging children in the town. The townsfolk identify him as the murderer and Wardaddy promptly has him executed. Later, Wardaddy and Norman meet a German woman, Irma, and her cousin Emma. Norman presumably sleeps with Emma, then joins Wardaddy and Emma's cousin for breakfast, during which time Norman discovers that Wardaddy has horrific, severe burn scars on his back. The rest of the crew barge in and cause tensions while at the table, (all of whom but Bible were looting the town and enjoying the spoils of war) but Wardaddy stops them from harming the two women. Coon-Ass continues to be rude, taking Emma's eggs and licking them before putting them back on her plate. Wardaddy switches plates with her and eats the eggs Coon-Ass licked instead. Shortly afterwards, a German bombardment hits the town, killing Emma and some of the American forces. This, coupled with observing the retreating Germans burning their own towns and the cruelty they show to those who do not fight for the Wehrmacht, hardens Norman.
A platoon of four tanks, led by Wardaddy, gets a mission to hold a vital crossroads from advancing Germans, protecting a clear way to supply trains and a camp full of army doctors and cooks. If the Germans were to reach the camp, all those people would likely be killed and the whole unit may be in jeopardy. After encountering and engaging a heavily-armored German Tiger I tank, only Fury remains, the other three vehicles being outgunned and annihilated by the Tiger. Wardaddy's vehicle is then immobilized after hitting a landmine; shortly afterwards, a battalion of three hundred Waffen-SS infantry approaches. Wardaddy refuses to leave, and the rest of the crew, initially reluctant, decide to stay and plan an ambush.
Outnumbered and outgunned, Wardaddy and his men nevertheless inflict heavy losses on the Germans using both the tank's and the crews' weapons, but gradually, one by one, Coon-Ass and Gordo are all killed, and Bible is shot in the eye and killed by a German sniper. Wardaddy is shown to have great affection for Bible, as he hugs his corpse and apologizes, saying that he did the best he could. Wardaddy is then killed and Norman survives by hiding under the tank. The surviving German soldiers move on, implying that they were too weakened to continue. Norman later took his dog tags and crosses his (Wardaddies) arms to honor him and promises to take care of his family when he comes back home.
As suggested by his name, Bible is very religious (Christian, obviously). He is heard quoting the Bible throughout the film, and the crew of Fury seems to look to him (although often in a joking sense) as a spiritual guide. He's a reasonable thinker, and often is able to view situations from a neutral point, as seen in the opening scene's argument. Bible may very well have been one of the only truly good people in the tank, aside from maybe Norman Ellison.
Shia LaBeouf's performance was hailed by critics as a phenomenal portrayal and Bible is a fan favorite of the characters in Fury.
- "On the way!"
- "I know you hate me preaching, but what we're doing here is a righteous act, Gentlemen! You hear me, Gordo? Here's a Bible verse I think about sometimes. Manytimes. It goes: And I heard the voice of Lord saying: Whom shall I send and who will go for Us? And... I said: Here am I, send me!"
- "I hope you get scabies."
- "I'm done trying to convert you heathens."
- (to Norman) "You a praying man? Are you saved?"
- (to Norman) "Don't let them lead you astray."
- (after being asked if Jesus loves Hitler) "I would assume so. And if Hitler accepted Jesus in his heart and got baptized, he'd be saved. Won't save him from man's justice."
- "You've been asking these same dumb questions for three years. You know where I stand. You're just trying to rile me up."
- "Gordo. Stop. Leave him rest."
- "His number came up. That's all. We've been lucky. Until now. Settle down."
- "Stop ragging on everyone. You didn't kill Red. The Germans did."
- (after Norman asks where the front is) "Where's the front? Hmm... All around us. Kid, this is Germany. We're surrounded by Krauts."
- "Norman. There two are wicked men. Albeit amusing. You better grab hold of Jesus. He's the one thing that won't rattle you loose."
- "They're coming!"
- "I'm the instrument. Not the hand. God didn't want us today."
- "I know where to fuckin' hit 'em!"
- "The world and its desires pass away. But he who does God's will lives forever."
- (In the original script): No crew stayed together like we had Norm, and it's because of him.Look you did alright, you spotted 75. when nobody else couldn't
- He has a wife and two children back in Missouri
- He was awarded European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, Purple heart, bronze star and a Distinguished service cross
- Bible was studying to become a preacher before being drafted into the army, according to the script.
- Also according to the script, Boyd is a preacher's kid from Des Moines, Iowa. The script also says that "you'd never guess that he's killed a thousand men". The film seems to suggest that he is not from Iowa, but rather Missouri.
- Bible is a Fundamentalist as indicated by identifying Norman as a "Mainliner" when he admits to being Episcopalian.
- Shia LaBeouf, an extreme method actor, worked to become the exhausted soldier of Swan. He didn't bathe for over a month, grew a mustache, and even cut his own face and pulled out his own tooth to further distinguish the character.
- Shia LaBeouf converted from Judaism to Christianity after playing the role of Swan. He was originally Jewish.