XIII and his most trusted allies.
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XIII, born Jason Mullway
Aliases: Jason Mac Lane, Jason Fly, Alan Smith, Jake Shelton, Steve Rowland, Ross Tanner, Jed Olsen, Hugh Mitchell, Karl Meredith, Kelly Brian, El Cascador
An amnesiac man who was found unconscious on a beach with the number "XIII" tattooed on his clavicle. While looking for clues of his past, he discovered he has deadly close combat skills, and found himself entangled in huge state conspiracies and dark family affairs. He tries to sort all of this mess out with his newfound friends and allies.
- 13 Is Unlucky: Lampshaded by a tramp he meets in a train at the end of "The Day of The Black Sun". Averted most of the time actually, considering he has always escaped death.
- Amnesiac Hero: XIII is amnesiac. He does not even remember his name.
- Amnesiac Resonance: Just like Jason Bourne, his combat skills are not at all affected by the memory loss.
- Badass Beard: There are situations in which he can't shave, such as when he trains with the S.P.A.D.S. or when he's in a penitentiary.
- Badass in Distress: Whenever he gets captured. He's perfectly able to save his own skin most of the time.
- Badass Minds Think Alike: His instincts seem to share a connection with those of Jones.
- Chick Magnet: He never tries to seduce girls, they just come to him.
- Deadpan Snarker: Often engages in Snark-to-Snark Combat with Jones.
- Dead Person Impersonation: He was recruited to impersonate Steve Rowland as part of Carrington's plan to find out who ordered the assassination of William Sheridan, before his amnesia.
- Determinator: He's not the kind to give up, either in the quest for his past or when he has to stop villains.
- Disease Bleach: Has a grey streak on his left temple where a bullet scratched him.
- Genre Savvy: In spite of his amnesia, he often compares his situations with detective novels or movies.
- Identity Amnesia: Does not remember who he is.
- Made of Iron: In The Day of the Black Sun, he jumps through a window and falls from the 4th floor and he escapes unhurt. In The Night of August Third, he is shot at point-blank range. The bullet is stopped by a notebook and he is able to get involved in a fistfight a few minutes later.
- Meaningful Name: His first name, Jason, is a reference to Greek mythology: when he was a child, the hero Jason was raised by an adoptive father, the centaur Chiron.
- Mr. Fanservice: Sometimes shirtless.
- Mysterious Past: Even to himself, his past is mysterious because of his amnesia. The numerous mysteries about his past are conveniently used by the authors to expand the series.
- Name Amnesia: XIII does not remember his own name. In the first episodes, on several occasions, he thinks that he has finally discovered his real name, but he is proven wrong soon thereafter.
- Oblivious to Love: Action Girl Jones is obviously fond of XIII, but he seems to ignore this when she asks him what she is to him.
- Parental Abandonment: Because Daddy Had a Good Reason for Abandoning You.
- Pursuing Parental Perils: In "The Jason Fly File" and "The Night of August 3rd", he basically runs into The Klan, some members of which killed Jonathan Mac Lane/Fly, who he believed was his biological father for some time.
- Quest for Identity: XIII does not remember who he is, so he tries to discover it.
- Skunk Stripe: XIII has a white stripe of hair, the result of being grazed by a bullet.
- Surgical Impersonation: XIII is not the real Steve Rowland. He had plastic surgery to impersonate him. The said surgery was very successful, given the fact that Steve's family did not spot the impostor in Where the Indian Walks.
- Tattoo as Character Type: The protagonist has simple tattoo on the clavicle: the number XIII (Moderate Sized). Amos reveals that this is the mark of the members of a conspiracy (Organizational Emblem) that attempted to kill the president.
- Training from Hell: Has followed several in his life. The most horrible of these has to be the S.P.A.D.S. training, which often results in the death of the weakest soldiers.
Lieutenant (later Major) Jones
General Carrington's aide, a brilliant, beautiful and seductive pilot.
Tropes in XIII:
- Ace Pilot: She's been trained as a pilot, and she can pilot anything that flies.
- Action Girl: Jones is nearly able to match XIII in a fight in Where the Indian Walks. In Thirteen to One, she fights with young male soldiers (for her, this is just a pastime that she enjoys during her holiday). She knocks them out easily.
- Action Girlfriend: At some point it's become clear she is XIII's girlfriend, and she can kick as much ass as him.
- Afro Asskicker: She sports an afro pretty much all the time, and kicks as much ass as XIII.
- Badass in Distress: In The Night of August Third, she's almost hanged to death by the racist goons of Dwight Rigby.
- Badass Minds Think Alike: Her instincts seem to share a connection with those of XIII.
- Battle Couple: With XIII. They are both exceptional fighters, they have fought together throughout the series and they are Friends with Benefits.
- Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Averted: as she gets a wound to the abdomen that leaves a massive scar. The doctor says it'lll eventually go away, but she's now likely to be unable to bear children.
- Clingy Jealous Girl: Much to her chagrin, XIII Really Gets Around and she knows it, but she never abandons him nonetheless.
- Comic-Book Fantasy Casting: For her appearance, she was inspired by Whitney Houston.
- Crippling Castration: Jones's uterus was damaged when she was wounded in Full Red and she is infertile.
- Deadpan Snarker: Her tongue is especially sharp when she finds out XIII sleeps with other women.
- Friends with Benefits: She often has sex with XIII, but they are not in a real relationship: XIII bangs other women from time to time and he feels no guilt about it. In The Jason Fly Case, she makes clear that she would like a relationship upgrade, but XIII does not understand (or he pretends not to). It eventually happens by The Last Round.
- Love Interest: Her relationship with XIII progressively evolves from Friends with Benefits to lovers.
- Majorly Awesome: She was introduced as a lieutenant, but at the end of Full Red, she is promoted to the rank of major.
- Ms. Fanservice: In The Jason Fly Case and The Night of August Third, bad guys attack her when she is almost naked, so she has to flee and fight in very light clothes. In Thirteen to One, she wears a swimsuit on the beach.
- No Name Given: XIII asks Jones's first name and she answers "Lieutenant".
- Second Episode Introduction: She is introduced in the second book Where the Indian Walks.
- Universal Driver's License: She can drive and pilot pretty much anything, be it on roads or in the sky.
Tropes in XIII Mystery:
- Dark and Troubled Past: She is the sister of Marcus, a Black Panthers terrorist. General Carrington met her when she tried to prevent an attack Marcus was about to carry out and save her brother by warning as much people as she could about it.
General Benjamin "Ben" Carrington
The military leader who deviced the plan to have a pre-amnesia XIII infiltrate the Conspiracy of the XX as Steve Rowland, along with the efforts of his daughter within the organization. His plan didn't quite work out as expected, but he later bumped into XIII again, and together with Jones, Amos and Betty Barnowski, they worked to bring the Conspiracy down. He remained a friend and staunch ally to XIII throughout the comic book series.
- Cigar Chomper: He always smokes cigars.
- Cool Old Guy: In Where the Indian Walks, he does not hesitate to jump into a helicopter to pick XIII up on the roof of the house of the Rowlands. In Full Red, he inflicts Standwell a bad wound, then he tries to escape. In The Trial, he sets up alone a complex plan to expose the crimes committed by President Wally Sheridan.
- A Father to His Men: In Where the Indian Walks, Carrington tells XIII he trained him and the link between them is very strong even if he is amnesiac. Therefore, he does not hesitate to help him to escape from the Sheriff in Southburg. He does not even ask why the Sheriff chases him. Subverted, because it is revealed in SPADS that Carrington did not train XIII and that he helps him for other reasons.
- Four-Star Badass: In Where the Indian Walks, he does not hesitate to jump into a helicopter to pick XIII up on the roof of the house of the Rowlands. In Full Red, he inflicts Standwell a bad wound, then he tries to escape.
- Comic-Book Fantasy Casting: Lee Marvin, anyone?
- Military Maverick: In The Trial, he neutralize his successor and the vice-president with Knockout Gas, he kidnaps President Wally Sheridan, and he steals the nuclear football.
- Papa Wolf: For him, It's Personal as much as it is serving his country to bring down the Conspiracy of the XX, since his own daughter is involved and needs protection.
- Retired Badass: He still helps XIII after leaving the army.
- Second Episode Introduction: He is introduced in the second book, Where the Indian Walks.
Colonel Samuel Wenceslas Amos
A former Mossad agent who moved to the USA in the 1950s and joined the FBI. He investigated the murder of President William Sheridan and tracked XIII down, until General Carrington told him the truth about XIII. He remained a trustworthy ally to XIII and Carrington afterwards.
- An Arm and a Leg: Lost his left arm in his youth during the 1948 ArabIsraeli War.
- Badass Israeli: In his youth, he was a IDF commando leader during the 1948 ArabIsraeli War, and the operations he carried out caused major damage to the enemy.
- Go Out with a Smile: Smiles at his friend XIII upon dying.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Takes a bullet to protect his friends in "Operation Monte Cristo".
- Inspector Javert: Amos investigates the murder of William Sheridan and in the beginning, he was convinced XIII was the murderer, so he chased him.
- Lethal Chef: XIII admits that he's a terrible cook.
- Retired Badass: A former IDF commando leader and Mossad agent, then he retired from the FBI after the Conspiracy of the XX is taken down in "Full Red".
- The Stoic: He rarely displays emotions.
Sergeant Elizabeth "Betty" Barnowksy
A Sergeant in the S.P.A.D.S. elite unit. XIII has a brief affair with her, then she gets entangled in his troubles.
- Action Girl: A given when being The Squadette. In Full Red, she mows down several thugs who wanted to rape her with a M60. In El Cascador, she blows up a military ship, then she shoots down many guards of Roca Negra prison.
- A Match Made in Stockholm: Armand de Préseau grows very fond, as soon as he is kidnapped by her, XIII and Jones in Full Red. In the end of this episode, she goes to San Miguel to meet him. They ended up marrying after some time.
- Comic-Book Fantasy Casting: She's modelled after Shirley MacLaine.
- Deep South: Where she comes from.
- Good Girls Avoid Abortion: Averted. She had two abortions. XIII Mystery reveals she had been pregnant with XIII and decided to keep the child but then had a miscariage.
- He Knows Too Much: She saw Steve Rowland discussing with Mac Call after his supposed death in an helicopter crash. When Mac Call hears it, he decides to kill her.
- Put on a Bus: She departed to join Armand de Préseau in San Miguel and only reappeared about ten albums later.
- The Squadette: Being a woman in what's possibly the most manly and sexist military unit on Earth is akin to a nightmare, but she was strong enough to be integrated and survive in it.
- Tomboy: She never really dressed "feminine", or cared about "looking feminine", evidenced when she has troubles walking with high heels while infiltrating the Full Red military base in disguise. It changed quite a bit after she met Armand de Préseau.
- Training from Hell: She managed to survive the hellish training of the S.P.A.D.S.
Armand de Préseau
Marquis Armand de Préseau
A Frenchman of noble descent and the richest banana plantation owner in San Miguel. XIII, Jones and Betty Barnowsky bumped into him while escaping the Conspiracy of the XX agents who infiltrated the S.P.A.D.S., and they "kidnapped" him in his private jet to go back to the USA and stop the Conspiracy. He didn't mind, finding it all amusing actually, and remained a trustworthy ally and friend to them, falling in love with Betty in the process.
- A Match Made in Stockholm: He is very fond of Betty Barnowsky, who is one of his captors in Full Red. In the end, Betty goes to San Miguel to meet him. They eventually marry.
- Blue Blood: He's of French noble descent and upbringing.
- Cool Old Guy: A funny, old and laid back Gentleman Adventurer who finds it exciting to be kidnapped and used by XIII & co because of his Rich Boredom, and becomes an ally to them.
- Gentleman Adventurer: He came to San Miguel to seek business ventures, and found them, along with some ass to kick.
- High-Class Glass: He's never seen without a monocle.
- Rich Boredom: He's so bored after making a fortune and losing his wife that he enjoys every minute of being kidnapped and used by XIII, Jones and Betty, and ends up becoming a trusted ally and friend to them (and Betty's husband, eventually).
- Self-Made Man: Became the wealthiest banana plantation owner of San Miguel by sheer force of will, starting with only a shack and the help of Romeo, a young local Indian who became his butler.
A man with plenty of connections to XIII's past.
- Disappeared Dad: XIII / Jason has not been able to find out who his real father was for a long while.
- Kissing Cousins: He's a cousin of the woman he loved, Carla Giordino.
- Luke, I Am Your Father: In El Cascador, he reveals that he is XIII's biological father.
- The Reveal: He is XIII's father.
- The Scapegoat: He was framed for the murder of his lover Carla Giordino.