I have gotten many letter and read many Internet posts asking about
John Black, the most rewritten character on any daytime soap. I have put
together this FAQ to answer these questions. If you have anything to add
feel free to mail me with any information.
Who is John Black by birth?
John Black was born Forest Alamain. The Alamain family is a royal family of
Europe. The Alamain family consists of Leopold (the father) Philomena
(the mother), and their
children Lawrence and Forest. Vivian Alamain is the children's Aunt and
their father's sister.
So what happened to Forest?
One day Lawrence and Forest were riding their tricycles around their
pool when Forest fell in. Lawrence sat back and watched until his
brother drown. Leopold and Lawrence's mother found Forest and
revived him, but decided not to tell Lawrence because it might disturb
his state of mental health even further. They decided to give Lawrence
a drug that would block out the incident in his mind, however the drug
also left Lawrence feeling no guilt for actions he committed. He continued
to take this pill throughout his life believing it was for an illness.
They sent Forest to a private school in America where he got a good
education and was brought up unaware of
his family. Lawrence blocked out the incident with Forest with the help of
the medication , but later remembered it when Kimberly Brady hypnotized him
and realized what the medication he was taking was really for.
"The Pawn" Story line
The character John Black first appeared in February 1986.
Victor brought John Black to Salem and he was nicknamed "The Pawn".
When John Black first arrived he was in bandages and was mute. In the
beginning he was staying with Victor who had a nurse tending to his bandages.
Victor also had a file on "The Pawn". Victor knew all the time that he was
Roman Brady and he showed him slides of Roman and his family to try and spark
memories. Later John escaped from Victor and was found by Steve "Patch"
Johnson. He spent time living with Steve in his loft.
Steve called Marlena in to help find out who John was.
How did he get the name John Black?
When John first appeared, Marlena and Steve called him John Doe. Later,
while in a soup kitchen he was asked what his name was. Not knowing his
last name he took the name Black after reading it off a plaque of
the names of veterans on the wall.
How did he become Roman?
Marlena was using hypnosis to try to get John's past to resurface.
His knowledge of Stefano made many people think he might be Stefano, who
had changed his appearance through plastic surgery. The phoenix tattoo
on his back gave people a reason to be even more suspicious of John.
Marlena began to fall in love with John during their attempt to discover
John's identity. During this time John began to act like Roman. He ordered the
same drinks, liked the same things, said similar phrases, would get in
the same arguments with Marlena, etc . . . Later Marlena found a file from
the doctor who performed the plastic surgery on John. It included a picture of
John before the surgery. The picture was of Roman.
John and Marlena marry
John/Roman and Marlena renewed their vows on August 22, 1986. Maggie was
the matron of honor, and Abe was the best man. Kim and Kayla were
bridesmaids, and Carrie was the flower girl.
John's missing past
Though John believed he was Roman, there was still part of his past
missing between the time Roman originally died in 1984 and when
John appeared. John set out on many adventures after Stefano in search of a
way to fill in the blanks in his life.
John's Adventures as Roman
Marlena was believed to have died in January 1987. In the past Roman
worked for the ISA with a man named Orpheus.
While on a case Orpheus' wife came to tell the
two of them that they were being setup and Roman accidently shot her.
Orpheus wanted revenge so he kidnaped Marlena. He also set up an
explosion to fake Marlena's death. Orpheus' wife's sister, Olivia, went to Salem to
find out who the man who killed her sister was. She did not however plan
to fall in love with him, which is what happened. Orpheus planned to
reveal that Marlena was alive, but only after John/Roman had betrayed her
with Orpheus' sister-in-law. John/Roman and Shane eventually learned
that they were holding Marlena on a tropical island and went after her.
John/Roman found Orpheus and chased him down. Orpheus shot at
John/Roman, but the bullet is intercepted by Olivia who plunges herself
in front of it to save John/Roman's life. Orpheus is killed when
John/Roman shoots him. However, John/Roman then finds out that Marlena is already
on a plane that is taking off. Unfortunately the plane went down and exploded.
John/Roman witnessed this crash and had to tell the Salemites about it.
The Martial Arts/Marlena Quest
In October of 1988 John/Roman began to receive messages that
Marlena was still alive, most notable was a newspaper with her picture on it.
Other clues were found at a break in at a jewelry store were John/Roman smelled
a perfume that was Marlena's favorite. He also found a scarf like the one
he gave Marlena at the crime scene. The clues he was getting led him to a ski resort
where he and Marlena honeymooned.
There a mysterious women who looked like Marlena taunted him.
Eventually Carrie was kidnaped and brought to a Caribbean Island by
Shane's evil twin brother Drew. Later John/Roman, Shane, and Diana
went after Stefano. There they found a room that
Stefano had recreated to look like Roman and Marlena's living room.
In it they found a woman who looked like Marlena, but it was not Marlena. Around
this time John/Roman suddenly developed skills in the martial arts, but does not
remember being taught these skills. He discovers that he was trained by
Stefano's father-in-law, Orion, to be an assassin. Orion's daughter Ellen
was the mother of Benji, and his father was, dum dum dum duuuum, Stefano.
Benji was the little deaf boy that was living with Steve and Kayla at the time.
They found Benji while on their honeymoon and planned to adopt him.
An angry John/Roman went after Stefano and wanted to know why he did this. Stefano
says it was for revenge for what
John/Roman did to his son Benji. Apparently John/Roman was on some type of
mission which involved blowing up a building. Benji was accidentally caught
inside and went deaf as a result. Stefano held John/Roman responsible. Once
again, Stefano got away and Benji went to live with his grandfather
(the one who taught John the Martial Arts).
John/Roman and Isabella and The Cruise of Deception
This story occurred in the summer of 1990.
Isabella's father Ernesto had taken Isabella back
to her home. There he kept her in her old room and slowly began to poison
her because Isabella accidentally killed her sister Marina, who was Ernesto's
only true child. Ernesto anonymously invited all the major residents to his
ship for a cruise. To get even with them he blew the ship up. However,
they made it to a remote island, which was where Isabella just happened to be
imprisoned. It was on the island that Jack and Jennifer revealed that Victor
was Isabella's true father. They had found this out from a diary that
Isabella's mother had written and had intended for Victor to find.
It is also where they made love for the first time
in a cave. John/Roman eventually found Isabella and rescued her from her
deranged stepfather, who was not only trying to poison Isabella, but
had used the same type of poison to kill Isabella's mother. Later on in
a cave above a pool of acid, Ernesto had himself and Hope locked in a cage.
Unfortunately something went wrong and the cage dropped into the pool of acid.
Hope and Ersnesto's bodies were never found, and this is how they believed Hope to
John/Roman is reunited with Marlena
In August of 1991, Marlena Brady woke up on an Island named St.
Christopher. She had been in a coma for five years.
Marlena manages to board an airplane cargo hold and swipes a pink jogging suit type
outfit out of a suitcase. Everyone who watched the show during this
story line could never forget that pink outfit because she wore it for
something like three weeks straight. Anyways, Marlena made it back to Salem
and starts searching for John/Roman. During her search she discovered that he
is not the Captain of the Salem PD, but the Commander and is engaged to
marry Isabella Toscano. One day in the park, Marlena met Sami and Eric and
she was heartbroken that they didn't remember her. Eventually Marlena found
John/Roman on the docks and they are reunited. Unsure how to break the news
to everyone, John kept Marlena from the family until he figured out what to
do. John/Roman confided in Bo that Marlena was alive, but nobody else.
One day when Marlena was at the house, Caroline came over and bumped into her.
Afterwards John/Roman reunites Sami and Eric with their mother, but they
only remember her from a picture John/Roman keeps. Later, John/Roman
reunited Marlena with the whole family. At first they are shocked, but
then overjoyed. Everyone seems happy, except Isabella who fears she
had lost John/Roman.
John is not Roman, he's John
Shortly after Marlena returned to her life, she remembered being
in the clinic on the island and hearing Roman in the room with her calling
her Doc. John/Roman said it was impossible because he was in Salem all this
time. In an attempt to get to the truth, Marlena and John/Roman go to the
island of St. Christopher in hopes of finding a clue. There they uncovered
the real Roman Brady. Roman has been held captive on the island all this time.
He was told by doctors that they brainwashed John into thinking he was Roman
as part of a plan. They also warned him that John is a trained assassin,
and if he sees Roman he will kill Marlena on sight. Roman eventually escaped
from his cell and got out onto the island. There he found Marlena, who fainted
when she saw him. When John showed up and found Roman and Marlena together
his first reaction was to get Marlena away from this imposter. Roman, John, and
Marlena got into a big fight, but in the end all three of them left the island and
return to Salem. Upon returning everyone was shocked to see Roman and John standing
next to each other. Roman explained his story and John cannot believe it.
Later, Caroline asked John about one of his childhood birthday parties and
about a girl up the street who wanted to kiss him. When John failed to
answer the question correctly, Caroline tells him he is not her son. The
family then decided to call him by the name they first knew him by, John Black.
With Isabella's help and love, John came to accept the fact that he is not
John's Adventures as John
John and the Mayan Pyramid Quest
After Roman's return and John's realization that he was not Roman,
he, Roman, and Marlena were determined to find out who had done this to them
and why. Clues about star locations that had been programmed into their heads
and mysterious medallions that Roman and Marlena were wearing
led John and Roman to a place called "Terra De La Fuego", which
translates to "Land of Fire. Once there they discovered that Stefano
had programmed information into their heads which would reveal the date
and location of the whereabouts of some ancient Mayan scrolls called the
Codices. Roman had been working on a case in the early 80's called the
Landen Case. They gave him the location of the scrolls and he was supposed to
return them to the Mexican government. Stefano learned about this and kidnapped Roman. He then programmed the information into John's head and
sent him to Salem to become Roman. John's task was to retrieve these
scrolls as part of the Landen Case, but to return them to Stefano, not
the Mexican Government. They found their way inside one of the pyramids where they
up with Stefano, who was the mastermind of this whole scheme. He had a satchel that
contained John's identity in it. Stefano tormented John with it and even gave John
the opportunity to kill him. Stefano knew that John would not do so because he was
the only one who knew about his past.
Unfortunately an earthquake occurred and then a fire started while Stefano
was trying to escape and he was crushed and burned within the cave. Before leaving
a burnt satchel Stefano had which he claimed had the secrets to John's past.
After everyone returned to Salem, Lawrence Alamain stole the codices.
Hypnosis doesn't work on John
Marlena discovered that trying to learn John's past through hypnosis was
hazardous to his health. John would always regress back to a point in his
life where he was drowning (The Alamain Pool). John nearly died remembering
John and the Romulus/Who am I Quest
In the satchel that John retrieved were three things, a broken locket,
a burnt picture of a woman's neck with a mark on it, and a melted gold blob.
John had the golden blob analyzed and reconstructed. It turned out to be a ring, with
wolf's head on it I believe. Soon he began having dreams of being at a masquerade
party and of seeing a woman in a mask. He also had dreams in which he could
hear the word Romulus. It was at this time a woman named Danielle Stevens
appeared and claimed to be John's wife. She also had a ring identical
to the one John had found in the satchel. John looked into Romulus and
found out that Romulus was the code named used by a notorious art thief
in Europe, who had suddenly reappeared after all this time. Because John knew so much
about how the crimes were committed he was suspected of being Romulus. In
the end however, Danielle Stevens turned out to be Romulus, and she also
was not his wife. She lied because she was still in love with him and wanted
him back. The picture in the satchel of a woman with a mark on her neck turned out to
be Carly. It was taken at a masquerade party given by Lawrence where John was
trying to prevent Romulus from stealing some priceless art.
The broken locket turned out to be the second half of a locket that his mother gave
to him and her other son. I believe it was Carly who pointed out that Lawrence had
a similar locket. This lead to the discovery that John was actually
Lawrence's brother Forest Alamain, whom they believed to be dead. Not accepting
this Lawrence and Vivian had Forest's coffin dug up and shipped to them. Inside the
coffin they found nothing but sand. Vivian later confronted Danielle about
the locket thinking it was stolen, but Daniel told her John had the locket before
she even met him. Vivian told Lawrence and they kept it a secret because they
new that it meant John could claim his rightful half of the family fortune
and business that Vivian was running. Later Carrie snuck in to see Lawrence
because she had a crush on him. John ,who was still very protective of Roman's
children, burst in with a gun and held Lawrence at gunpoint. Lawrence then said
"You wouldn't really shoot your own bother?". This is how John found out that he
was Forest Alamain. DNA tests would later prove Lawrence's accusations which
John found hard to believe.
John and Isabella marry/Isabella dies
John and Isabella married on May 15, 1992. At their wedding Isabella gave
birth to their son on May 18, 1992 , whom they named Brady in honor of the Brady
family. About six months after they were married Isabella died of pancreatic cancer.
John's quest to find the missing Marlena
After Marlena returned to work as a psychiatrist, one of her first patients
were an unhappy couple named the Lombards. The husband Roger
was a heavy drinker and often hit his wife Stella and his stepson Jesse.
They came to her for help as a family. The husband took a liking to Marlena
and he got his act together. Unfortunately his
wife Stella became jealous and she thought Marlena was having an affair with her
husband. She lured Marlena to an old warehouse in which she pushed Marlena down
into a very deep hole. There she left Marlena and let her starve. As She tried to
flee town she was hit by an oncoming truck when she tried to call the police
to let them know where Marlena was (her conscience got to her). She later died in
the hospital trying to tell Jesse what she had done. John ended up falling
into the hole with Marlena. There they thought they were going to die together.
Luckily Roman discovered them both within minutes before the old warehouse was set to
be blown up for construction purposes. After they were rescued the experience
rekindled their deep love for one another when they were asked about the experience
on Jennifer's show.
John and Marlena's affair
After the incident in the pit, John and Marlena found themselves attracted
to one another. John decided it was best if he left Salem for good. On the
night of Roman and Marlena's wedding anniversary, John prepared to fly out
of town when Marlena stopped him. There on John's plane Marlena and him made
love. After they made love Marlena couldn't believe what she had done and ran
home to find that Roman had planned a surprise anniversary party for them. Throughout
the party Marlena was shaken, and later that night Marlena made love to Roman
as well. The couple would make love a second time at a Bella Magazine party, where
Sami would spot them. Marlena became pregnant, but was unsure who the father
was. She traced the conception back to the time around her anniversary, but she
had slept with both Roman and John then. Marlena underwent tests at the hospital
to learn the baby's father. The tests came back and said that Roman was the father,
and Marlena was relieved, as was John. However, both were unaware that Sami switched
the results of a paternity test to protect Romans' feelings. After the baby was born
Belle and attempted to put her up for adoption, but John and Kristen caught
her. Sami then reveled to Marlena that she had seen John and Marlena
making love at a party at the Titan building. Soon afterwards
Sami's diary was stolen. At the baptism of Belle, realizing that
Stefano knew about the affair when he entered the church, Marlena blurted
her affair out in front of all of her friends and family.
Still unaware that the baby was not Romans', to hurt
Roman, Stefano gained Sami's diary which revealed the truth about Belle.
Stefano gave this diary to Roman. Soon after learning the truth Roman divorced
John and Maison Blanche
After discovering that Stefano was alive and that Kristen was his adopted
daughter, John went on yet another quest to find his identity. John was in love
with Kristen at the time, but she married Tony because Stefano faked his death
in a car crash and made John look responsible. Kristen married Tony out
of spite because she hated John and blamed him for her father's death.
This time his search led him to a house called Maison Blanche. It was on old southern
ante-bellum home that Stefano owned. There Stefano took him prisoner and chained in
the basement. In the basement he found engraved on the wall
"Johnny Black 1984". It was there that he began to have flashback of being chained
brainwashed in that basement. Stefano was determined to re-brainwash John so that he
would forget who he was, and would leave Kristen alone.
Stefano was also afraid that John would remember that hr was responsible
for the deaths of Kristen and Peter's parents.
However, John survived Stefano's attempt to brainwash him by thinking of Kristen.
Later Stefano lured
Marlena to Mansion Blanche using a tape-recorded message in John's voice. There he
held Marlena prisoner. Unknown to both of them, Stefano and Celeste were holding
Hope upstairs. Hope's face was concealed behind a veil for the first few weeks. Hope
could not remember who she was and Stefano and Celeste would not let her leave.
Later Kristen held some type of party at Mansion Blanche in which she invited
most of Salem for a costume ball. It was there that Billie first began to
see Hope, but Bo would not believe her. Later on John remembered that behind one of
the cell bricks he had hidden something many years ago. After removing the
brick John found a medallion along with a prayer, which John could not
understand. He remembered Celeste telling him in flashbacks that those were all
he needed to escape Stefano. At the climax of the story Celeste tried to kill
both John and Marlena by turning up the gas in the house. She did this
because she hated Marlena because Stefano loved Marlena and not her. Roman
arrived just in time to free John and Marlena from their cell. John ran out into the
rain where he found a confused Kristen and Tony. When he explained that it was
Stefano who did this to him she would not believe him until she saw her
supposedly dead father upstairs through a window. A fire broke out in the house,
and Tony ran back in to retrieve a computer which held the key to John's
identity and went blind as a result. Stefano escaped and took Hope with him out to
sea in a boat. John followed
and their boats were turned over by the storm. When he realized that the woman with
Stefano was Hope he chose to save Hope instead of pursuing Stefano. Later after the
story line ended, John and Kristen tried to crack the password on Stefano's computer.
Kristen was the one who eventually broke it by using a name that Stefano used to
call her, "Cara Mia". The computer revealed that around the age of 18, John Black
entered the priesthood. John would not believe this until he returned to a church
where he served. There one of the church members recognized him as Father Black. He
also found a cement imprint of "Father Black's" hands in a wall. His hands matched
perfectly. Later Father Francis confirmed that John was indeed a priest and that he
as a pupil under Father Francis.
John and Marlena's Exorcism
Upon returning to Salem, Stefano rented the apartment next to Marlena's
and built a secret doorway between the two, which led into Marlena's bedroom
through her wardrobe closet. Stefano began nightly visits to Marlena in a mask
and began to slowly seduce her. This seduction left her soul open for grabs,
and the devil grabbed it. Marlena became the Desecrater and began desecrating
holy places. Her desecrations included burning the Salem Christmas Tree,
attempting to kill John by dropping a chandelier on him at Bo and
Billie's first attempted wedding, chaining Kristen to the church altar naked and
red pentagrams all over her body, and attempting to kill John who was locked
inside the church when she set it on fire. When they finally discovered
Marlena was possessed John, Father Francis, Caroline Brady, and Kristen set
out to exorcise her which would last many weeks. Eventually Marlena died. Not
believing she was dead, John went to see her at the morgue. Marlena , who was
still possessed, sprung up and had a final confrontation with John. Eventually John
won and carried Marlena's lifeless body to the church and placed it on the altar.
There Marlena came back to life , and was de-possessed.
John framed for Tony's Murder
After finding out that Tony had been lying to Kristen many times,
Kristen returned to John in hopes of creating a new life and a new family
for herself. Tony soon learned that he had a very rare and fatal
blood disease. Determined to keep John from Kristen he planned to frame
John for his murder. In a move to save his soul, he confessed his plan in
a confessional at the church. Unfortunately he confessed to Father Francis,
who swore to find a way to tell John. When Tony found out Father
Francis had contacted the bishop about breaking the vows of silence he
startled Father Francis into a seizure/heart attack and would not give him
his blood pressure pills. Tony's plan failed when Father Francis did not
die. John found a cuff link clutched in Father Francis's hand which was from
Tony's coat. This convinced John Tony had something to do with Father
Francis's heart attack. Later after Father Francis regained conscience,
Tony cut off his air supply from the tanks in the hospital basement,
which cause Father Francis to fall into a deep coma. Later, At
Jen and Peter's wedding in Aremid, Tony was ready to put his plan into action. At
the wedding reception Tony accused John of still being in love with
Marlena. He eventually worked John into a frenzy until John shouted out
"I'd like nothing better than to wipe you and your father off the face of
the earth". Later, Tony left the reception and placed a call to John.
Using a machine to disguise his voice, Tony told John that he knew that Tony
caused Father Francis's heart attack and coma. John went up to Tony's
room to have it out. Tony used every thing he could to get John angered
up. Locking the door to the hallway, the Salem residents listened to the
two of them fight. John eventually left through the back door, which had
gun powder sprinkled on the knob. After John left Tony started screaming
"Don't shoot me John, please don't shoot me." Using John's gun, which he
cleverly stole from the loft, Tony shot himself using some type of
remote control set up in a fake stack of books, which was controlled by a
remote disguised as a bald point pen. Eventually the residents got to
Tony, but they could not save him. Before he died he said that
that John shot him. John was put on trial, and found guilty of Tony's
murder. Stefano blackmailed the judge into convicting John and giving
him the death penalty. Marlena and the Lady in White worked to get the
Tony's diary from Stefano. Stefano had hid the diary so that John would
be doomed, and Marlena could be free to love him. However, the Lady in
White dropped the diary. Luckily Jack and Jen picked the diary up and
arrived at the prison in time to save John.