- "You know, you can take every treasure there is. Get all the bounties and the choice contracts. You can wring this galaxy dry of every last credit. You can have it all. And still have absolutely...nothing. That's how it is, Sweetcheeks. 'Cuz the one treasure that I truly seek can't be taken...its gotta be earned. If you'll give me a chance to earn it..."
- ―Jack confesses his love for Samus
|Jack Nathan Ravenstahl|
Don't tempt me with a good time!...
The Green Raider
The Second Horseman
Scourge of the Badlands
|Level|| Friendly NPC
Jack "Growler" Ravenstahl is the good-natured and wisecracking intergalactic Mercenary and Bounty Hunter leading the Army-for-Hire, The Green Raiders. Formerly of the Galactic Federation, Jack fell on the wrong side of the law due to multiple infractions as a soldier in the Galactic Army. As a result he formed his own mercenary group, fighting for causes he deems as just...provided the pay is good.
Growler's relationship with Samus is one of great intrigue in the Metroid universe. On the one hand, he and his merenaries are little more than pirates, despite their general code of honor. This has inextricably placed Samus and Growler on opposing sides of conflict, and Jack has even been made into a boss in many Metroid games. On the other hand, it is no secret that Samus and Growler are on/off lovers, and Samus has frequently called for Growler's aid when in trouble, even going so far as to announce him as her "boyfriend."
- "Desolus is only good for three things. Whiskey, dice and bad memories. My dad took to two of them and gave me the latter."
- ―Jack on his abusive past.
During a conflict with invading pirates, Jack was so severely injured he required a blood transfusion. As there wasn't enough blood in supply to keep him alive, the doctor attempted to supplement the transfusion with Zebian blood. No one knew exactly what would happen, but Jack simply refused to die. According to eye witness accounts, he jumped out off bed and ran to the front lines before beating several dozen pirates to death with his bare hands. He then screamed that he couldn't breathe and collapsed.
It is later revealed that the Zebian DNA had bonded with Jack's natural cells, granting him superhuman speed, enhanced strength and a hyper accelerated metabolism. Unfortunately, he could no longer breathe Oxygenated air for extended periods, instead requiring air with increased levels of Nitrogen to survive.
He was picked up by the Galactic Federation to join the army at 15, but felt an outcast due to his enhancements. He briefly served with Samus on one mission, though neither knew it at the time. Even then, He was constantly made fun of and abused by other soldiers, who discriminated against him due to him being "a freak." He hints he was physically and sexually abused in the military, but didn't press charges, instead choosing to deal with the problems "personally".
Jack later served at the Battle of Nazio. In the horrifying fight, Jack was the only survivor of his Taskforce of about 10,000 men.
The Evangelizer Edit
Finally, however, Jack found his niche. Galactic Federation Army started the Evangelizer Program. Battle suits crafted for combat and exploration were created and volunteers were drawn up. Jack was one of them. His training and his enhancements made his without any concievable doubt one of the most devestating soldiers in the Galactic Federation. It was during this time that Jack earned his nickname, "Growler," due to the Nitrogen-infused air making intimidating growling sounds as he breathed.
With his training and neigh indestructible suit, Growler wreaked destruction across the battlefields of the Galaxy. The more and more conflict he saw, however, the more and more he doubted in the mission of the Federation. Pollution of planets, destruction of communities, war crimes committed by the armies made Growler melancholic and cynical.
Finally on a "pacification" mission on Nedross, Jack was ordered by a sadistic officer to execute the children of a rebel faction. Disgusted by the order, Jack killed the officer and helped the children escape. Jack was summarily arrested, given a joke of a court martial, dishonorably discharged and sentenced to death.
The Great Starship Robbery Edit
The day before his execution, disgruntled officers in the Galactic Army loyal to Jack sprung him out of prison and made a run for it. But Jack wasn't interested in fleeing and wasting away on some backwater planet. He was through with suffering. It was time for revenge.
Jack brought his men to the Newmoon Federal Impound and Armory. Without firing a shot, Jack destroyed all but one Evangelizer suit and made off with it, most of the arms and 14 warships and cruisers. Samus would later note that it was "the single greatest heist ever committed against the Federation."
The comprehensive report on the ships stolen are
- GFS Weatherford, rechristened The Punishing One. Flagship, Experimental Capital warship
- GFS Carentan, rechristened Vengeful Spirit, Destroyer
- GFS Khe Sahn, rechristened Raging Spirit, Destroyer
- GFS Alexandria, rechristened Mournful Spirit, Destroyer
- GFS Thermopylae, rechristened Hateful Spirit, Destroyer
- GFS Chosin, rechristened Longing Spirit, Destroyer
- GFS Seraphim, rechristened Giver of Mercy, Medical ship
- GFS Severance, rechristened Giver of Peace, Supply Cargo ship
- GFS Keppler, rechristened Giver of Hope, Supply Cargo Ship
- GFS Justice, rechristened The Banished One, Escort Cruiser
- GFS Vengeance, rechristened The Forsaken One, Escort Cruiser
- GFS Vindicator, rechristened The Abandoned One, Escort Cruiser
- GFS Zephyr, rechristened Whirlwind, Gunboat
- GFS Morningstar, rechristened Tornado, Gunboat
After the heist, Jack was at a loss at what to actually do. Without any real trade-able skills, Jack decided to do what he did best. He splashed green paint on his Evangelizer armor and scrawled a fiendish smile on the helmet. He then made a galaxy wide broadcast, calling any and all mercs, bandits, pirates and militia men to his call for justice and loot. When these soldiers for hire got wind the famous Growler was building an Army, they instantly jumped on the band wagon. And thus, the Green Raiders were born.
- "They make a nasty mess of things. Complete amateurs...but they do their job well."
- ―Samus on the Green Raiders.
Jack's reputation, fleet, army and, of course, his wealth grew exponentially with every escapade. Perhaps, to Jack's benefit, he regained his sense of humor, and became famous for his razor sharp wit and his ability to lighten even the darkest of situations.
The repute of the Green Raiders spread far and wide. Even Samus knew better than to tangle with a division of Raiders riled up and ready for war. Across the galaxy governments, corporations and crime families vied for the firepower of the Green Raider Fleet. They had an impressive track record, rarely failing to uphold a contract. The Galactic Federation keeps close tabs on the Green Raiders; aside from their leader being a wanted convicted felon, the Federation fears what should happen if the Raiders decide to overthrow the Galactic Government.
The Green Raiders have summarily been referred to as a Superpower-for-Hire, noting the capabilities of the army far outmatch even most Galactic Battle Fleets. The Green Raiders abilities encompass ground armies, security services, assassinations, black operations and counter insurgency. Other, not strictly military venues, include Space fleets, exploration, resource extraction, research and development, and infrastructure. In all these sectors, the Green Raiders prove themselves to be efficient and capable.
Appearances in Metroid Edit
Metroid: Kindred Spirits Edit
Jack is first encountered by Samus in Metroid: Kindred Spirits. Samus, floating helplessly in a damaged Gunship send out a distress signal. Jack answers, with his entire war fleet Jumping to Samus' position. While in The Punishing One's tractor beams, Jack playfully "asks" Samus to identify herself, threatening to destroy her if she didn't. Samus reluctantly identifies herself and is taken aboard the massive war ship, where she is met with personally by Jack himself. After a few words, Jack agrees to repair Gunship in return for Samus' intel on her latest bounty, so they can split the reward.
After Samus and Jack start softening up to one another, Jack gives her more liberty to move about the ship, even showing her different components and the Superlaser. The ship then engages marauders, which are easily destroy by the withering firepower of Jack's ship. Later that night, Jack and Samus sleep together in Jacks quarters.
After Gunship is fully repaired, The Punishing One transports them to Samus' bounty location. After retrieving the bounty, Jack is enraged to find out the bounty is to carry a member of the secretive Hedekkian Cult, with whom Jack has a had a bitter history. Jack begins to bombard the Cult settlement from orbit. Samus quickly returns to The Punishing One, and engages in her first fight with her rival/lover in the cargo bay. After fighting to a draw, Jack rescinds and breaks off the attack, but warns Samus to never stand between him and the sadistic cult.
Metroid Prime Edit
- "What do you want, Jack? I'm not interested in another tangle with you after Feenic." "Tut, tut, must you be so cold, Sweetcheeks?""
- ―Samus and Jack on Tallon VII
Super Metroid Edit
- "The Green Raiders. I had heard of them. And their Leader, a daring pirate named Growler. If he's here, then he must be after the metroid. I must find it before he does!"
- ―Samus on Jack and the Green Raiders
Jack and the Green Raiders are on a bounty hunting mission to retrieve the Last Metroid for an undisclosed customer. He is encountered several times, attempting to impede Samus, before being depicted as a boss, after the Gold Torizo and before Ridley. He bahaves similarly to Samus, using firearms, missiles and blades to attack her. After he is defeated, his helmet falls off and he begins to suffocate. Samus walks away, then turns around and gives him his helmet back, sparing his life. When the Green Raiders arrive to save their boss, they carry him away as a heart appears over Jack. Aside from thanking Samus, some believe this is the first time that Growler indicates his true feelings for Samus.
Metroid: Vector Point Edit
- "Ha! It's your lucky day, Sammy! I'm not gonna kill you...I don't work for free."
- ―Growler at the game's end
Metroid: Other M Edit
- "Titan Squad keep those guns up. Gold Team prepare to board! We got a lot of dosh riding on this job boys. Lets do it right!"
- ―Growler upon arriving at Bottle Ship
Personality and Traits Edit
- "How many Zebesians does it take to change a light bulb? Beats me that's why I asked you!! HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!"
- ―Jack lightens the situation up some.
However, despite his jovial disposition, or perhaps because of it, it has been suggested that Jack is actually deeply depressed. Jack has been noted to suffer mental breakdowns from time to time in the Metroid series, even to the point it placed Green Raiders at risk. This in turn causes him to despise himself even more.
Concerning his relationship with Samus, Jack's lighthearted and playfully teasing demeanor both annoys and intrigues Samus, who very rarely encounters individuals with a romantic liking towards her. Jack often teases Samus for her demeanor and her gender, some of his comments even considered to be down right misogynistic. However, beneath the veneer of humor, Jack truly respects, fears and loves Samus. He is one of the few male bounty hunters in the Galaxy who believes her tales and considers her a true peer, even superior to himself. He truly believes that Samus is a force to be reckoned with, as when Samus was pursuing one of Jack's bounties. Jack told his men it wouldn't matter what happened, that Samus was going to get what she wanted, and so planned his entire strategy around what to do once Samus defeated him.
As Samus' romantic interest, Jack provides a constant and a comfort from the daily grind and Samus' own demons. Samus has stated that meeting Jack almost felt like she was "fleeing from the insurmountable to a steady, unmovable object."