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File:The Darkness cover 7959.jpg

Once The Darkness gets ahold of you, you start to lose control. You start to wonder what the fuck you're doin'. Time slips away from you. And then, all of a sudden, it's like you're sittin' in a theater, watchin' a movie of your own life. And you're up there on the big screen. Big as life, you're a fuckin' movie star. And you're killin' all the bad guys, tearing them limb from limb. And you feel good. You look good. Fuck, you are good. And then you realize something. Everyone else in the theater: they're screamin', 'cuz they're watchin' a horror movie. And you're not the hero...

You're the monster...

A 2007 game based on the comic series. The Darkness features Jackie Estacado, nephew of don Paulie Franchetti, and hitman for the Franchetti Crime Family. However as soon as his 21st birthday comes, he inherits the evil known as the Darkness, which grants him abilities beyond his wildest blood-spattered dreams. Among these is the power to summon Darklings, little gremlin bastards that act somewhat as his multiple tiny alter-egos that are mostly interested in spouting off politically incorrect commentary and humor, but can disembowel an enemy at a moment's notice if Jackie commands it. Before Jackie first manifests the Darkness, Uncle Paulie betrays him and marks him for death, leading Jackie into a Roaring Rampage of Revenge.

A sequel was released in February 2012, taking place two years after the first game. Jackie is now the head of the Franchetti Crime Family, and has managed to suppress the Darkness. However, when a mysterious group known as The Brotherhood attacks him looking for the Darkness, he must unleash it once again.

For tropes exclusive to the original, see here.

The first game contains examples of:
  • Affectionate Nickname: Jenny has one for Jackie- "Ratface," apparently one she started using when they were much younger.
  • All There in the Manual: The origin story for Anthony Estacado is explained in a special comic book issue published at the same time as the game. Reading it sheds a lot of light on the nature of the Darkness and Anthony's character that is otherwise left completely unexplained in the game. Fortunately, the book is viewable in-game as an unlockable extra.
  • Art Shift: The first game used a more-realistic art style; the sequel is cell shaded.
  • Back from the Dead: Jackie. Twice.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: By carrying out his vengeance, Jackie sacrifices his soul to the Darkness. Exactly what this entails, however, isn't quite clear. You are not given the option to spare Paulie.
  • Bittersweet Ending: About a hair's breadth away from a Downer Ending. Jackie finally surrenders himself to the Darkness during an eclipse in order to take out Paulie and his army of mooks. Jackie's personality is consumed entirely by the Darkness, but he's given a few moments to see Jenny one last time before he goes. It's implied by the "light in the darkness" lines that it may not be completely over for him, either... hopefully.
    • However, according to the sequel's intro, Jackie has managed to suppress The Darkness in-between games.
  • Bland-Name Product: The game has "The Green Olive Grove" restaurant.
  • Blatant Lies:

Berserker Darkling: I want to kill someone.
Gunner Darkling: I am unfamiliar with the concept. [Attacks a mook.] Maybe not, I guess.


The Darkness: "Jackie, I fixed your broken head ball."

    • Hell, the Darkness expected him to be pleased after it forced him to watch Jenny be murdered because this would "make him stronger" and it seemed utterly bewildered when he chose instead to kill himself.
  • Black and Black Morality: Johnny lampshades this in the Vendettas trailer. Jackie might have the moral high ground, but that's damning with praise considering some of the stuff he does and the company he keeps.

Johnny: Evil is evil. Face it, we're not talking about soda pop here. There's no 'sugar free' option.

  • Border Patrol: By all means, head directly into the subway tunnels. See what happens.
    • The Darkness mocks you when you do this, saying something along the lines of "this is not a very good idea..."
  • Boring Yet Practical: The pistols have pin-point accuracy even when fired as fast as possible, and you're tripping over spares for most of the game. Zoom in, aim for the head, and you can take out a bunch of enemies while saving energy you would have otherwise used on a black hole.
    • The first Darkness power, Creeping Dark, can move further with each level, and the NPCs are notoriously incapable of hitting it. Furthermore, after making a kill you can eat the heart of your victim to refill Darkness energy to full. This combination makes it possible to clear entire rooms without entering them through most of the game.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: All four of the darklings in the game have their idiosyncrasies, but the Berserker darkling is particularly unhinged. Even better, it's voiced by Richard Horvitz.


  • Cold-Blooded Torture: At one point in the game, Shrote captures Jackie and tortures him by taking a power drill to his face; this scene is shot from Jackie's POV.
  • Convenient Eclipse
  • Cross-Melting Aura: In the first game, a solar eclipse supercharges Jackie's powers to the point where light bulbs (which would previously need to be shot or smashed) start exploding just by his very presence.
  • Dangerously Genre Savvy: Uncle Paulie shows shades of this but Shrote easily takes the cake as it takes him all of two seconds to figure out that the Darkness is vulnerable to light. From then on he sets up ambushes using floodlights and knocks Jackie out with flashbangs. Bonus points for making sure Jackie had multiple lights shining on him while he was interrogating him and stops his Mooks from indulging in Just Between You and Me. Paulie on the other hand just straps some floodlights to the front of his secret hideout and calls it good.
  • Defiant to the End: While being tortured by Shrote, most of Jackie's dialogue options involve flinging insults at the nearby cops. True, Jackie actually intended to die on this particular mission, but it's pretty impressive considering that Jackie is managing to speak with a hole drilled through his face.

Keep lickin' Eddie's ass, ya cunts. Polish that sweet butt crack.

  • Dirty Cop: Tons of 'em. Jackie has disdain for said cops as well as for the mobsters who partner with them, since it dirties both of them.
  • Downer Ending: Both games end very, very badly for Jackie.
  • Easter Egg: Unlockable concept art and full issues of the comic.
  • Eleventh-Hour Superpower: Of a kind: In the last stage of the game, Jackie mounts a one-man offensive against Uncle Paulie's island fortress. The attack begins at daylight, which would seem to be a stupid move on his part... except that an eclipse is due and as it progresses Jackie's power spikes. Light bulbs start shattering by his mere presence.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Jackie and the old-school mobsters really hate partnering with dirty cops, drug money, and other bottom-of-the-barrel underworld stuff.
    • The old-school mobsters are particularly disgusted when Paulie bombs an orphanage, while at the same time you can overhear Paulie's minions laughing about it.
  • Evil Sounds Deep: Sometimes. The Darkness sometimes speaks in a low, gravelly tone, but sometimes uses a high, menacing hiss. One thing's for sure, it always sounds incredibly disturbing.
  • First Person Ghost: Averted, Estacado's lower body is fully visible.
  • First-Person Shooter
  • First-Person Smartass: Jackie's monologues.
  • Forced to Watch: The Darkness holds Jackie helpless while Paulie shoots Jenny in the head.
  • For Inconvenience Press One: One of the collectible phone numbers.

Operator: "If someone is currently stabbing you, press 4."

  • Good Hurts Evil: Good irritates evil. The Darkness refuses to manifest itself around the subway stations full of normal people, and if you try it'll complain that it finds the people too boring to attack; the Darkness is attracted to darkness, and even the metaphorical darkness of the heart is preferable to it. When meeting Jenny for the first time:

The Darkness: "She reeks of innocence!"

  • Good Old Ways: Jackie receives aid from the old guard of the Mafia.
  • Good Thing You Can Heal
  • Guns Akimbo: Your first weapon is a pair of pistols.
  • Have a Nice Death: Depending on when and where you die in the game, you're treated to a series of warped, distorted images of the next location in the game while the Darkness hisses something cryptic, usually about how it's not going to let you die.
  • Hell Is War: The Otherworld in the first game is a nightmarish, unending version of World War I that Anthony Estacado is stuck in.
  • Hollywood Darkness: Averted in the first game; areas without light can go completely pitch-black (but using your powers lets you see in the dark.) Played straight in the sequel; "dark" areas are so well-lit it's sometimes hard to figure out where the lights are at a glance.
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: It is implied that the Darkness wasn't originally evil, but having to deal with human hosts for millennia (what with their wars, and greed and sickness) has driven it insane. Though this is learned in the Darkness' own realm, so it could be just another Mind Screw on its part...
  • Hyperspace Arsenal: Jackie does not reload his pistols or SMGs. He drops them and pulls out new ones. This is shown when you notice different types of pistols in his hands, or when one of your SMGs suddenly has a silencer. This trope is played straight when you realize that each "clip" in your arsenal is actually a different gun, and you can hold more than 2 dozen pistols and SMGs in your coat.
    • Then again, it's most likely justified here, as Jackie may well be keeping the Darkness under his coat, providing him with an actual pocket dimension to store said guns.
    • Averted in the sequel. Jackie is limited to two one-handed firearms, which can be dual wielded, and a single two-handed firearm.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: You can recharge by letting the Darkness rip out and feed upon the hearts of your enemies.
  • Kill the Cutie: Jenny
  • Kryptonite Is Everywhere: Light. Very dim lighting doesn't affect you too much, but standing under or near any strong light source will quickly drain your powers and leave you vulnerable. The bad guys eventually realize this and start setting traps for you with floodlights, and flashbangs are extremely effective at disabling Jackie. This is an upgraded weakness from the comics, where Jackie was only vulnerable to daylight.
  • Large Ham: The Darkness itself, dear God. Fittingly, the second game has it literally Chewing the Scenery on occasion (figuratively...all the time). The (cockney?) British Darkling as well, though not quite as much.
  • Mad Bomber: The Kamikaze Darkling.
  • Magical Realism: The only supernatural phenomenon seen in the game is the Darkness itself (and, by association, the Darklings and the Darkness world). Apart from that, the characters and world are pretty realistic (albeit somewhat stylized).
  • Mercy Kill: Once you obtain the Darkness Guns you'll be able to kill the Allied soldiers in Chapter 2 & 4 permanently. Since all of them are horribly disfigured and in constant pain you'll feel little remorse for doing so.
  • Money to Burn: One of your missions to sabotage Uncle Paulie is to find out where he's stashing a large amount of his cash and burn it.
  • Morality Pet: Jenny. Then Paulie offs her. Be afraid. Be very afraid.
  • Nerf: The Darkness' creations crumble in any strong light, not just sunlight, in order to make the entirely nocturnal game a challenge for the player.
  • New York City Cops: Far more competent than the mobster mooks, due to being led by the calculating Captain Schrote, who very quickly figures out Jackie's weakness and how to exploit it.
  • Not Wearing Tights: Jackie never sports his costume from the comic series. Many other supernatural elements are also cut. This has the effect of making the supernatural elements actually more impressive when they do show up.
    • The second game introduces a a skill tree system including the comic book "Darkness Armor" as an upgrade.
  • One Bullet Clips: Averted. Despite being an first-person shooter (where this is common), Jackie does not reload his pistols, but picks up new ones from his coat. As well, assault rifles accurately lose all unused bullets in the clip being discarded for a new one. Ammo is categorized by "Bullets in gun"/"Total clips/guns", and if you reload early, you have full bullets in gun, and lose 1 clip. Somehow, though, you realize the same rule applies to shotguns...
  • Our Zombies Are Different: The undead soldiers in the hell inside the Darkness's mind. The Hun are typical monstrosities, but the Brits are fully aware, stuck fighting the same war for centuries while unable to die. Most disturbing is one of the first soldiers you meet, who's endlessly trying to commit suicide by shooting himself in the mouth over and over in between reciting poetry.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: The game more or less takes what works about the Darkness comics and runs with it. One change they made is making Jackie weak to any light, not just sunlight, which arguably improved the experience as a whole (allowing savvy villains to pose a threat to Jackie as long as they have floodlights or flashbangs). Jackie also doesn't have his Top Cow-ian "Darkness Armor," just a black trenchoat with lots of darkness-tendrils popping out of it while using his powers.
  • Reality Ensues: Uncle Paule is the final boss of the first game. Considering he's an out-of-shape fat guy going up against a heavily-armed hitman possessed by a spirit of primordial darkness that's just been supercharged by the recent eclipse, he goes down with one hit.
  • Reconstruction: Of the Nineties Anti-Hero.
  • Refuge in Audacity: The Darkness is this personified.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: In the finale chapter, Paulie and his Mooks (And the player, for that matter) get to see first-hand what a fully-powered-up Jackie is capable of doing.
  • Show Within a Show: Jenny and Jackie can watch To Kill a Mockingbird in its entirety, as well as several full-length TV shows that are now public domain.
  • Second-Hour Superpower: Jackie's Darkness powers don't manifest until after the first level in the original game.
  • Self-Deprecation: One can overhear a casual conversation between NPCs about the alleged sexual openness of Swedes, involving, among other things, having sex with a moose. The game's developer, Starbreeze Studios, is Swedish.
  • Stuff Blowing Up: In the game, the Kamikaze Darkling's attack is to run up to the target, pull the detonator off his back, push the plunger and explode.
  • Stuffed Into the Fridge: Jenny. She's barely a character, and pretty much is Jackie's primary angst source in the story.
    • Ironically, she's far better developed in the sequel, where she spends the entire game dead.
  • Suicidal Overconfidence: By all means, run toward the tentacle-spouting glowy-eyed superpowered hit man. Never mind that he can kill you five different ways without even needing to raise a pistol.
    • The game subverts this to some degree in that the Mooks generally will still try to shoot you, but the dialogue that goes along with most scenarios consists of panicky yelling about what you are and how to get rid of you (or get away from you). In one scripted scene, dozens of them are screaming in terror and trying to run away while Jackie in fully-powered Darkness mode hunts them down and brutally eviscerates them.
  • Swirly Energy Thingy: The Black Hole power.
  • Taking You with Me: When he's captured and tortured by Schrote, Jackie manages activate the bomb he had put in the suitcase.
  • The Tape Knew You Would Say That: Strange version. Jackie has several flashbacks of himself and little Jenny in the orphanage, but at least once, Jenny seems to be aware that they're being watched...
  • They Were Holding You Back
  • Throw-Away Guns: Jackie's method of "reloading" pistols and SMGs, all if which he keeps in his coat.
  • Too Good for This Sinful Earth: Jenny
  • Torture Technician: Shrote proves his credentials in this field when he manages to capture Jackie.
  • Useless Useful Spell: The game lets you use a couple of types of automatic weapons, but all firearms are useless compared to the One-Hit Kill properties of the Darkness powers (particularly the whip and the black hole). Guns are mostly a fallback for when there's too much light for you to use your Darkness powers.
    • The Darkness II places greater emphasis on gunplay, complementing it with The Darkness' mostly melee-based powers.
  • Video Game Caring Potential: On the other hand, the game lets you retrieve an elderly woman's wedding ring off the subway tracks, deliver a long-lost memento to a widow, and watch a movie with your girlfriend.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: But you can also go around being a dog-kicking asshole slaughtering civilians, and the only thing that changes peoples reaction to you is whether or not you're in Darkness mode... which is to say, random people in the subway will always be nice to you even if you've killed most of New York City in incredibly brutal ways, as long as you don't have Combat Tentacles sprouting from your back and shoulders. Which may, in fact, be accurate.
  • World War I: Whenever Jackie commits suicide on Holy Ground, he goes here - or at least to a hellish domain inspired by it, with immortal British soldiers condemned to die over and over again and German zombies who are little more than snarling beasts in uniform. One of the Brits suggests that none of them are actually real.
  • Year Inside, Hour Outside: In the hell that Jackie finds himself, the Brits have been fighting World War I for centuries.
    • Somehow inverted at the same time, as Jackie's segments there take minutes-hours of gameplay when days pass in the real world.

The sequel contains examples of:
  • Actionized Sequel: Not that the first game was lacking in action, but the second game is not nearly as subtle as the first.
  • Affectionate Nickname: The Darkling calls Jackie "Monkey".
  • Ambiguously Gay: Enzo from the second game remarks on one character "Keeping his strong arm on the pump", comments on Jimmy the Grape's "grapes", and admires Fat Tony's "Salami" and says he'd be very attractive if he lost weight.
    • "Adolph" in the Asylum comments on how much he admires the sight of sweaty young men digging ditches.
  • Armor Is Useless: Subverted. Armored Brotherhood agents and especially shielded ones can take more punishment than ones with no armor, though sufficient upgrades can decrease its efficiency greatly.
  • Art Shift: The first game used a more-realistic art style; the sequel uses Cel Shading for a more comic-like look.
  • Back from the Dead: Jackie, for the third time in the series. And the fourth. And the fifth.
  • Badass Bookworm: J.P. Dummond.
  • Benevolent Boss: The second game shows Jackie to be this to the Franchetti crime family, taking the time to talk to his hitmen and getting to know them. He even offers his condolences when a hitman loses someone.
  • But You Were There and You and You: The Asylum of the second game is populated and staffed by twisted reflections of people Jackie knew in the real world: Tony, Dolpho, Swifty and even Johnny Powell appear as patients; Vinnie, Chief, Frank, Eddie, and Mr Peevish are orderlies; Jenny is one of the nurses; Jimmy the Grape and Brother Victor are doctors. Also, the Darkling makes a surprise appearance as a human janitor, the only key to his true identity being his hunchback and Cockney accent.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: The Brotherhood's attempts at getting Jackie to surrender the Darkness involve a lot of this: the first time , they crucify him and then force him to watch as one of his friends is executed. The second time, they shove him into an iron maiden; once they succeed in extracting the Darkness, they light a fire under the iron maiden and try to cook Jackie alive.
  • Dangerously Genre Savvy: The Angelus. It appears to have chosen Jenny as its host well before Jackie manifested the Darkness. Jenny's death in the first game and Jackie's subsequent drive to save her from the Darkness in the second game lead Jackie to unwillingly condemn himself to Hell. It doesn't even bother to fight him. Jackie, for his part, wasn't planning to fight her anyway, because he's kinda savvy himself.
  • Demoted to Extra: Butcher Joyce barely gets screen time and only optional dialogue, whereas he had a mission devoted to him in the original game.
  • Downer Ending: In the end, Jackie goes to Hell to save Jenny's soul. And in doing so, releases the Angelus, the force of light opposed to the Darkness which needs a female host. Specifically, Jenny. And both Jenny and the Angelus agree that Jackie needs to be left in Hell, and proceed to do so.
  • Easy Levels, Hard Bosses: Well, the boss fights aren't especially hard, but the fact that you can't heal your health in many of them (due to there not being any Mooks around and therefore no hearts to eat) does create a significant amount of challenge, especially if you've been going through the game by chaining executions together to constantly heal.
  • Elite Mooks: The Brotherhood has a number of special units, including guys armed with floodlights, armored guys with energy whips that can disarm you of your weapons, knights in riot armor equipped with bulletproof shields, and Superpowered Mooks with enhanced armor and health who can Flash Step all over the place using Darkness power.
  • Evil Cripple: Victor, leader of The Brotherhood. Despite the fact that he walks with leg-braces, he can simply Flash Step with the power of The Darkness.
  • Evil Sounds Deep: As in the original.
  • Extreme Melee Revenge: Halfway through the second game, Jackie catches up with Mr Bragg, the Brotherhood thug who led the attack on the mansion, murdered Aunt Sarah in cold blood, and gatecrashed her funeral. After defeating him in battle and letting the Darkling smack him about for a little while, Jackie uses the Darkness to slice open his torso and tears out his heart with his bare hand.
  • Eye Scream: The second game opens with Jackie going to a restaurant and meeting a pair of identical twins- one of whom is shot in the back of the head by an assassin who'd been aiming for Jackie; the bullet exits quite graphically through her eye.
    • The Darkling likes to finish off opponents by jumping up and gouging their eyes out with his thumbs.
  • Fastball Special: In The Darkness 2, Jackie can lift the Darkling and fling him at enemies. The Darkling is not amused.
  • First Person Ghost: Played straight, as opposed to the first game.
  • First-Person Shooter
  • First-Person Smartass: In spite of all that's happened to him, Jackie still has his wiseass streak.
  • Five-Bad Band: The Brotherhood
  • Five-Man Band: In the sequel, Jackie gathers up one of these, who are playable in their own Cooperative campaign.
  • The Gump: According to the relic descriptions, the Darkness has performed a number of historical feats, including killing Moses, as well as murdering Buddha and trapping his soul in a torture prison for eternity.
  • Half the Man He Used To Be: Happens to an enemy Mook in the second game when Jackie lets the darkness out again. It's also possible to do it in gameplay with the demon arm both horizontally and vertically.
  • Have a Nice Death: Depending on when and where you die in the game, you're treated to a series of warped, distorted images of the next location in the game while the Darkness hisses something cryptic, usually about how it's not going to let you die.
  • Healing Factor: During the introduction, Jackie's leg is badly mangled when a car crashes through the window in front of him; when he finally releases the Darkness, the player is treated to the sight of the bloodied leg regenerating. Furthermore, after being crucified by the Brotherhood and barely managing to escape, Jackie clearly sees the holes in his palms sealing shut.
  • Heroic Mime: Averted even in gameplay now. Jackie and the Vendettas characters talk in and out of gameplay with people around them.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: In the climax of the second game, the Darkling exposes himself to sunlight while helping Jackie escape from the Asylum- the one place where his immortality doesn't work.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: Inugami, in his lust for revenge and desire to fulfill Kusinagi's bloodthirst has made him even more Ax Crazy than most of the brotherhood he kills.
  • Hollywood Darkness: Played straight in the sequel; "dark" areas are so well-lit it's sometimes hard to figure out where the lights are at a glance.
  • Hypocrite: If you kill Eddie for the Sadistic Choice, his last words are to call you a son of a bitch. Kill the other guy, and he'll spend the rest of the game telling you that you should've picked him.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: You can heal by letting the Darkness rip out and feed upon the hearts of your enemies.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: In the sequel, Jackie can grab poles with his tentacles and spear mooks with them. There's even an achievement for getting two enemies at once with it: 2 Guys 1 Pole.
  • Ironic Echo: If you kill Frank in the Sadistic Choice, his last words are "This is not your fault,"- the same last words as Jenny. Brother Victor lampshades this.
  • King Mook: Most of the bosses in the Vendetta co-op mode are versions of regular enemies with lots more health.
  • Kryptonite Is Everywhere: Light again. The Brotherhood has been fighting the Darkness for centuries, and have gotten good at exploiting this: at one point, they booby trap a chokepoint with at least a dozen floodlights, incapacitating Jackie and allowing him to be captured.
    • The collectible Relics show that there are actually a surprising number of artifacts capable of harming and defeating the Darkness (or at least the Darkness Host), despite him being a walking Humanoid Abomination Physical God.
  • Large Ham: The Darkness itself, dear God. Fittingly, the second game has it literally Chewing the Scenery on occasion (figuratively...all the time). The (cockney?) British Darkling as well, though not quite as much.
    • The Vendettas characters definitely qualify, with lines such as: "This pain tastes... sweet", "THE HOUND FEELS NO PAIN!!" and "YOU MEN AND YOUR LITTLE TOYS!!", among others.
  • Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: Finding yourself something to use as a shield, be it a torn off car door, a street sign, or an actual combat shield, is useful in gameplay for a few extra hits. Then again, there's also the fact that Throwing Your Shield Always Works if you get a good hit.
  • Ludicrous Gibs: What happens to people who die by Gun Channeling or Black Hole.
  • Mad Bomber: Dolpho. In the co-op campaign, he always provides the explosives needed for the missions. For good measure, there's a good chance he's legitimatly insane, given that he spends his free time taking potshots at pigeons, and Jackie won't allow him out of the house.
  • Magical Realism: Dropped in the sequel by the introduction of numerous characters using magic or magical artefacts, the Siphon being the most obvious example. The game also introduces the Angelus, the Darkness' light counterpart.
  • Man On Fire: One of the special kills you can get from throwing a propane tank at enemies in the second game is called BBQ. You also see a few running around as Jackie is escaping from the Brothel.
  • Mean Brit: The Darkling that accompanies Jackie through almost the entire second game. It has a British accent, speaks with British idioms, and wears a tattered shirt with the Union Jack on it. Why it has a cat-skin for a hat is unknown...
    • He's quite mean to Jackie's enemies ("rip out their throats and piss on their corpses" kind of mean) but is actually one of Jackie's few friends.
  • Mismatched Eyes: Johnny Powell
  • Mr. Exposition: Johnny Powell in the sequel, an occultist who helped Jackie suppress The Darkness and is fairly knowledgeable about it and subjects relating to it.
  • Multinational Team: The characters of the Multiplayer mode in the sequel consist of a Violent Glaswegian, a Japanese swordsman, a Mossad agent and a Cajun Witch Doctor.
  • Multiple Endings: In the second game. The last time Jackie visits the asylum, he can either choose to stay with Jenny or jump off a ledge. Either one is still a Downer Ending, but the former is more of an And I Must Scream moment, because it means that Jackie has become the puppet of The Darkness. The latter turns the whole game into a Shaggy Dog Story.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: In the second game, by freeing Jenny's soul from the Darkness, the Angelus has possessed her and leaves Jackie behind in Hell.
  • Nightmare Fetishist: Johnny Powell seems truly fascinated by some of the relics that Jackie brings back to the penthouse, calling the soul-destroying Abysmal Maw "dark magic at it's sexiest," referring to the Dark Man statue as "this sexy guy," and upon seeing the Sister of Light, he remarks that Jackie always brings him the nicest things. That said, he does get a little bit agitated around some of the more visceral artefacts, and sounds quite disgusted when he reveals that the Reliquary of the Blessed Blood is supposed to contain Jesus' foreskin but in reality, it contains the foreskin of a guy named Miles from South Hammingtonshire.
  • Off with His Head: The Daisy Pop Hitman execution.
  • One Bullet Clips: Played straight, as opposed to the first game.
  • Open Secret: In the sequel, the fact that Jackie is a Humanoid Abomination is known by most of his crew, though they usually dance around the issue by calling it "his thing" or similar in front of the boss.
  • Orifice Invasion: The Throat Plunge Power Execution and Assecution Demonic Execution.
  • Pedophile Priest: Lampshaded but averted, in one of the between level cutscenes Jackie begins to tell a story about a priest that would visit the orphanage called Father Alanso then says "Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know what you're thinkin' and it ain't that kind a story".
  • Poor Communications Kills: Instead of threatening and assaulting Jackie, the Darkness could have easily just straight out told him "Hey, Jenny's possessed by the Angelus, and if you free her it will most likely leave you stuck here in Hell, return to the Earth, and force Jenny to murder thousands of people, including most of your mob buddies". Then again, Jackie being as stubborn and pig-headed as he is, he might have done it anyway regardless of the consequences.
  • Posthumous Character: Jenny Romano is expanded on far more than she was in the original game. A major goal of Jackie in the game is to save her soul from the Darkness' torment in hell, not to revive her.
  • Sadistic Choice: Between Frank and Eddie. Take too long deciding, and the game automatically kills Eddie (although you do get an achievement for refusing to take part in the Sadistic Choice, and Frank tells you that you did the right thing in refusing to play Victor's sick game).
  • Scary Impractical Armor: Most Brotherhood soldiers wear Darkness armor that covers their face and only their face. It makes them look scary and does protect against headshots, but does absolutely nothing to prevent them from being shot anywhere else in the body. About the only thing it's good for is giving you a lower kill score by making it harder to get headshots.
  • Second-Hour Superpower: The sequel has a short on-rails shooting sequence before Jackie unleashes the Darkness again.
  • Sequel Hook: The Angelus has taken control of Jenny and set itself up as the main antagonist of the third game, Jackie's stuck in hell but most likely won't stay there.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Jimmy the Grape states that Jackie reminds him of a guy named Vito who he knew back in the 50's who was really good at stealing cars, a pretty clear reference to Mafia II, another game published by 2K games.
    • The achievement in the Vendettas campaign for killing a guy named Luigi is called "Burned Down The Mansion."
  • Show Within a Show: Just like the TVs in the first game. The Asylum in the sequel plays a shadow theater of a story by H.P. Lovecraft. It's got Nightmare Fuel aplenty.
  • Suicidal Overconfidence: Played straight by melee enemies. Brotherhood cultists, using supernatural armor and axe-like weapons coupled with a religious fervor make sense. But the mafioso with the baseball bats?
  • Those Two Guys: Frank and Eddie. And you have to decide which of them dies.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: The second game awards experience for each enemy you kill, with more violent and gruesome deaths award you with more points.
  • Violent Glaswegian: Jimmy, dear Christ Jimmy.
  • Virgin Power: Implied to be averted, in contrast to the comic version. In various points during the second game, Jackie references conversations he had with his own father, who, if judging by the rules established in the comic, would not be alive to converse with. Jackie is still a Celibate Hero, however.
  • Weapon of Choice: Each Vendettas character has his or her own specialized Darkness relic.
  • Year Outside, Hour Inside: Each asylum segment takes only a few minutes, but varying amounts of time pass in the real world while he's there. He's once there for four days.
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