|Hold it right there, outlaw!|
This article is littered with spoilers, so I reckon you might ought'a mosey on down the road if you don't want to read any plot details.
John "Jack" Marston, Jr. is a major character and the secondary protagonist in Red Dead Redemption. After the death of John Marston, the player will play as Jack, who now has to hunt down Edgar Ross- the man responsible for his father's death.
In 1906, John was badly wounded in a botched bank robbery. John took this as an opportunity to abandon his life of crime after he was left for dead, as John often puts it. John left with Abigail and Jack, (and presumably his daughter, who is implied to have still been alive in 1906 as stated by Javier Escuella in "The Gates of El Presidio") relocating to a ranch on Beecher's Hope to try and start afresh as farmers and give Jack a safer, quieter life.
As a young adolescent, Jack was a kind and bright young man. He is more educated than even his parents, as his mother is illiterate and his father was never fond of books. Described by his parents as someone who loves to bury himself in books and literature. Both John and Abigail believe that some of this was due to his difficult childhood. As both his parents engaged in criminal activity, he was likely left alone for long periods of time as a child. Despite the criminal nature of his father's old gang, Jack affectionately refered to Dutch and Bill as "uncle" and stated they used to tell him stories of their criminal exploits.
Jack was eager to learn how to fend for himself, much like his father was able to. But Jack was rather impatient with the things his father tried to teach him and was quick to try and prove himself despite the dangers. John refused to teach Jack how to kill a bear as he didn't believe his son was ready, which resulted in Jack running away from home and going to hunt a bear by himself to impress his father. But John had to rescue the inexperienced Jack from the bear. After this experience, Jack admitted to John that he simply wanted John to be proud of him.
Also when John attempted to teach Jack how to shoot a rifle, Jack reacted rather defensively to his father's suggestions. Further showing his stubbornness and lack of patience at the time. Jack also seems to glamourise his father's past choices and naively calls him a "hero" which John disagrees with. It is shown through the game that Jack wants to emulate his father out of respect for him and proves he does see John as a role model despite his criminal past. Though they have gotten into arguments, Jack had a loving relationship with both of his parents, including Uncle. Up until the Federal Bureau's attack on Beecher's Hope, it seemed the Marston family was finally at peace and ready to lead the normal life they dreamed of.
Three years after the deaths of both his parents and Uncle, a close family friend, Jack's personality has changed drastically. In just three years he has obtained a proficiency in firearms identical to his late father, which heavily suggest he had been training in preparation to confront Edgar Ross, the man responsible for his father's death. He has also become more cold and pessimistic, appearing to have a hatred for lawmen due to the attack on his family's ranch. If strangers approach him asking for a favor, he will lament that he has nothing else to live for, which indicates that he is suffering from depression, a far cry from the happy young man he once was.
Eventually he guns down Edgar Ross in a duel and walks away from the scene. Whether he is destined to repeat his father's life as a criminal or find peace following his act of vengeance is left to interpretation.
Red Dead Redemption
At some point in 1911, Jack and his mother Abigail were taken hostage by Edgar Ross of the Bureau of Investigation to an unknown location in order to extort John to kill or capture his old gang members. After John had completed this long and strenous task, Jack was released along with his mother, Abigail, and they returned to the ranch where they were reunited with John. After his parents commented on how Jack had been troubled "growing up without a father," Jack began to finally share some time with John, as he was taught how to hunt and skin Elk, herd cattle, and become better-suited overall at working in the great outdoors.
Wanting to prove that he was not a child anymore to his father, Jack rode off alone to hunt a Grizzly, despite his father's previous warnings not to head off by himself. Uncle, after failing to prevent Jack from leaving, reported what had happened to John shortly after. John then travelled to the top of Nekoti Rock where he found Jack badly injured and the grizzly bear that had attacked his son. Saving Jack from the feral animal, they both rode back to Beecher's Hope, with John disappointed in his son's choice. Although Jack survived his encounter with the Grizzly, he was scarred with bear scratches resembling those of his father.
Near the end of the story, the ranch was attacked by the U.S. Military as instructed by Edgar Ross, who believed that eventually John must still pay for what he had done. Before the attack, John told Jack to keep himself and Abigail inside the house and to lock all the doors and windows. After initially hiding inside the house with Abigail whilst his father and Uncle shot down the first wave of soldiers, Jack soon came out onto the porch with a rifle and helped fight off the second wave in which Uncle was killed in the gunfire.
Eventually, after defeating numerous soldiers, Jack was ordered by his father to retreat alongside his mother to the barn. Once John joined them, Jack and Abigail were told to ride far away from the farm to find a place to hide, John saying that he would catch up later. With this, John slapped the horse, causing it to run out of the barn and away into the Great Plains. In order to ensure the safety of his family, John stepped outside the front barn doors and allowed his life to be taken by the soldiers waiting there, knowing that the government would no longer terrorise Abigail and Jack.
A few minutes later, Abigail told Jack that they had to return after hearing gunshots. At this point the player takes control of a sixteen year-old Jack riding on his father's horse. Upon arriving at the barn, they witness John lying in a pool of blood, his revolver by his side. After great mourning, they buried John's body atop a nearby hill overlooking the house, a hand-made grave stone, possibly made by Jack, marking his final resting place, alongside Uncle.
Three years later, a nineteen-year-old Jack, who suffers from depression due to losing his father and mother in a short amount of time, buried his now deceased mother next to his father's and Uncle's graves. Eager to avenge his father, he then proceeded to Blackwater where he met a Bureau agent named Howard Sawicki at the railway station. Jack learns from Sawicki that Ross, the man that had betrayed his father three years earlier, had retired a year earlier and moved to a quiet cabin near Lake Don Julio with his wife Emily Ross. Jack travelled to New Austin, hoping to confront the former agent. After reaching a cabin by the lake, Jack learned from Edgar's wife that he had gone away on a hunting trip with his brother Phillip in Rio del Toro, Mexico. Jack gave her his thanks and stated that, after hearing her worries for her husband, he was sure Ross would be "just fine". After finding Philip at the hunting campsite, who told Jack that Edgar had gone down to the riverside to shoot ducks. Jack confronted Edgar Ross at the riverside with building tension. Jack shared words of anger with the old man by the riverside. Ross stated that he would kill Jack too if he didn't leave, to which Jack responded "I ain't goin' anywhere, old man!" causing Jack and Edgar to have a final showdown. Jack drew his gun first and shot Ross, killing him. Finally, after delivering justice to his father's killer, Jack turned and slowly walked away, leaving what had been done; representing that "Everyone will eventually pay for what they've done". However, this act also placed his own future in danger; by murdering Edgar, Jack was dangerously close to becoming an outlaw himself - the very life that his father had hoped Jack would avoid at all costs.
Jack from here on is the playable protagonist during 1914, the first year of the First World War, as can be read from the newspaper. All of John's weapons, equipment, money, honor, fame, challenge scores etc. are carried over, as are all of John's outfits except his default Cowboy Clothing (Jack has his own unique base outfit, though wearing the Bollard Twins Outfit is the closest Jack can get in mirroring John's default Cowboy Outfit). Any unfinished side-missions or outfits can be completed with Jack Marston. There is one exception: the "I Know You" side mission is only available to John Marston. However, this side mission does not count towards 100%.
Jack Marston appears in Undead Nightmare. He is first seen reading and talking to his mother, discussing her swearing and her asking when he'll be finished with his "university education" before John comes home from the heavy storm. Later, after supper, John asks Jack about the book he's reading. Jack tells him it's about an Aztec man who apparently must kill his people who have been infected by a virus or plague, which just so happens to coincide with the storyline of Undead Nightmare.
Later that night, Uncle had come back as an Undead and is beaten over the head with a lamp by John. As John goes to retrieve his gun, Uncle gets up and chases Abigail out to the front porch. She trips over and is then bitten on the neck by Uncle, infecting her. John witnesses the attack and promptly ends Uncle's zombie existence by shooting him in the head with his Double-barreled Shotgun. Abigail holds her neck wound and moans in pain, causing John to call Jack out into the yard. Jack sees Abigail on the ground, bleeding, and goes over to try and help her. She bites Jack on the neck, infecting him as well. John grabs his lasso and goes back to them, seeing them having turned into Undead. He proceeds to hogtie them both, carrying them to the master bedroom of the house. He leaves them there, with plates of food, and goes out to find a cure and save his family from the supernatural plague. After Seth steals the mask from the Aztec tomb, causing the dead to rise again, players take control of Zombie Marston. Jack is never seen again while playing as Zombie Marston.
Red Dead Redemption
- "The Outlaw's Return"
- "John Marston and Son" (Boss)
- "Wolves, Dogs and Sons" (Boss)
- "Spare The Love, Spoil The Child" (Boss)
- "The Last Enemy That Shall Be Destroyed" (Boss)
- "Remember My Family"
In the last part of the gameplay mission "The Last Enemy That Shall Be Destroyed", players assume the role of Jack.
Jack now possesses all of his father's weapons, horses, properties, fame, honor, bounty, and abilities. He also retains moral traits of his father, such as a dislike of killing horses and women, an inability to swim, and a disinterest in prostitutes. Jack is still able to complete any unfinished stranger missions with his own speech dialogue.
Jack is unable to do the "I Know You" Strangers|Stranger side-mission, as that entire quest foreshadows his father's demise. However, Jack gets the unique quest "Remember My Family", to avenge John. Either way each Marston's unique quest deals with the other's fate.
|Hold it right there, outlaw!|
This article is littered with spoilers, so I reckon you might ought'a mosey on down the road if you don't want to read any plot details.
|WARNING: SPOILER ALERT|
Randall Forrester - Can be killed during American Appetites.
- Main article: Jack Marston/Quotes
- Jack's adult character model can be unlocked early in Single Player. Players can use a cheat to change from John Marston to Jack Marston. However, once entered, the player will not be able to enter available gameplay missions.
- The cheat code can be found written on a wall in the barn.
- After finishing the storyline and Remember My Family (not necessary), during single-player, Jack will mention all of his family (excluding his unnamed deceased sister), his father during combat and his mother and Uncle when talking with prostitutes and their pet dog Rufus when shooting and killing dogs.
- In Grand Theft Auto V, the most recent game by Rockstar, as an easter egg a book can be seen in a bookshelf of one of the protagonist's house, titled "Red Dead" and written by a "J. Marston". It is unknown (but possible) if the Red Dead and Grand Theft Auto series share the same universe, however it is possible that Jack may have in fact written this book after the events of Red Dead Redemption and it became a literary classic. Jack had told his father that he always wanted to become an author, and in the last mission he jokingly stated that if he wrote a book about his father it would become a best-seller.
- It is, however, unlikely that Red Dead and Grand Theft Auto are set in the same universe because there are mentions of locations and events in Red Dead, such as the Mexican-American War and New York City, which do not exist in the Grand Theft Auto universe.
- When playing as Jack in game, Jack may often remark that he "wanted to be a writer." He says this often when looking corpses. This could be interpreted to mean that Jack will, despite his current state, one day actually become a writer, and the easter egg in Grand Theft Auto confirms this.
- After Jack has been unlocked, his father's Cowboy Outfit is replaced by a beige jacket and a white shirt with a red bandana tied around his neck.
- Jack has recorded dialogue for every Stranger side-mission which could have been completed as John, excluding "I Know You."
- While skinning an animal, Jack may say "Just like you showed me, pa" referencing the mission in which John teaches him how to hunt.
- Jack shares a similar disinclination towards prostitutes like that of his father's, rationalising it by believing that his parents would disapprove of him having relations with them, heeding Uncle's warnings, and that they are too old for him.
- Jack does not enjoy killing horses, as shown by some of the things he says, such as "Is this what I've become, a horse killer?" (although sometimes, he will say "Why the long face?" as a joke when killing a horse). He shows the same displeasure when killing women, saying either "What have I become?" or "No wonder I'm alone."
- Jack appears to suffer from a severe case of depression, and frequently answers NPC's random encounter requests with dejected responses, such as, "I've got nothing else to live for". This is likely due to the fact that he is the sole survivor and the last living member of the Marston family, losing his family in such a short amount of time, with John and Uncle dying at the hands of the government, and Abigail passing away shortly thereafter. He also mentions Rufus being dead.
- Jack enjoys reading, as shown in 1911, and expresses that he wants to be a writer. He alludes to this interest further when, after hearing a story by a campfire, remarks that he thinks he may have "Read that in a book once."
- Jack has facial scars similar to John's, obtained by a grizzly bear in "Spare the Love, Spoil the Child".
- Jack, like his father, smokes cigarettes, but not to a large extent. This habit can be observed when Jack visits a theater or when he loiters around Beecher's Hope as an adolescent.
- Occasionally, when Jack kills lawmen and/or soldiers, he might say "You are the real criminals!", "The law killed my Pa!" or "I always hated lawmen!", referring to the incident at Beecher's Hope, thus, cementing his hatred for the government and military for what they did to his family.
- Sometimes when spurring a horse, Jack will yell "Work, ya damn nag!" regardless of what type of mount he is riding.
- It is possible that John telling Jack over and over that he will one day be a great rancher made Jack dislike farming, because when firing a machine gun for a while he will say, "Forget farming!"
- He seems to genuinely care for Uncle, as he was greatly upset by his death. This is further shown in Undead Nightmare where he is concerned about Uncle not coming home, and when told to go to bed he asks "What about Uncle?"
- When Jack finds a treasure chest, he may sometimes blurt out of excitement, "Jack's getting an automobile!"
- Sometimes, at night, while playing as John at Beecher's Hope, Jack will sit in front of the fireplace and play the harmonica.
- When playing as John in Beecher's Hope at daytime, Jack can be seen playing with a Repeater Carbine, constantly taking cover and pretending to fire it.
- In Wolves, Dogs and Sons, Jack proved to be pretty well-trained with the Repeater Carbine, cocking and shooting as fast as he could, chasing away crows from the barn.
- In Undead Nightmare, when lassoing Abigail, it's possible to see Jack chasing Rufus in the background.
- Jack is one of the youngest protagonists created by Rockstar Games, being only between 16–19 years old during the events of Red Dead Redemption. The other is Jimmy Hopkins from Bully (being 15 years old during the events of the game).
- Jack can only speak very basic Spanish. While in Mexico he usually remarks, "Hola" to NPC's and occasionally shouts in broken Spanish during combat.
- Jack has become a somewhat disliked protagonist by the gaming community because of the way he acts and speaks as a teenager, and has been called a poor replacement for John despite inheriting many of his father's traits as an adult.
- As a presumable side effect of his depression, Jack doesn't seem to care about his appearance, mixing his father's holsters, satchel and weapons with his own version of the Cowboy Outfit which looks more of a civilian version than John's. Also, Jack has apparently stopped shaving, but while playing as John he can be seen shaving almost daily at Beecher's Hope.
- Jack's Cowboy Outfit appears to contain several elements from his father's one. Most notably the hat, satchel, gun holsters, bandana and bandolier are identical to John's. Jack's trousers, boots and white undershirt are identical with the ones in Legend of the West outfit, which presumably was worn by John when he was in a gang. In fact, it appears that the only thing Jack added to the outfit himself, is the beige jacket.
- If the player wants to dress Jack up in closely resembling his father's default outfit, the Bollard Twins Outfit is the closest Jack can get in wearing an outfit similar to his father's initial one, albeit with the addition of a red bandana worn around his neck, and brown leather chaps.