Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Are 'J' names the most manly or powerful?

I ask because it's always bothered me that John and Jack are the most common character names for the heroes in action movies. But then I started noticing other J's and it made me wonder the title question. For example, not all are action movies, but I still think it qualifies:

Arnold Schwarzenegger has played these characters:

John Matrix (Commando)
Julius Benedict (Twins)
John Kimble (Kindergarten Cop)
Jack Slater (Last Action Hero)
John Kruger (Eraser)
Jericho Cane (End of Days)
John 'Breacher' Wharton (Sabotage)

Stallone has played:

John Rambo (the 4 Rambo movies)
Sgt. Joe Bomowski (Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot)
John Spartan (Demolition Man)
Judge Joseph Dredd (Judge Dredd)
Jack Carter (Get Carter)
Joe Tanto (Driven)
Jake Malloy (D-Tox)
James Bonomo (Bullet to the Head)

Bruce Willis:

John McClane (Die Hard series)
Joe Hallenbeck (The Last Boy Scout)
James Cole (12 Monkeys)
John Smith (Last Man Standing)
Jimmy "The Tulip" Tudeski (The Whole Nine/Ten Yards)
Joe Blake (Bandits)
Jeff Talley (Hostage)
John Hartigan (Sin City)
Jack Mosley (16 Blocks)
Jimmy Monroe (Cop Out)
Jack Biggs (Set Up)
Joe (Looper)

Clint Eastwood:

Jed Cooper (Hang Em High)
John McBurney (The Beguiled)
Joe Kidd (Joe Kidd)
John 'Thunderbolt' Doherty (Thunderbolt and Lightfoot)
Jonathan Hemlock (The Eiger Sanction)
Josey Wales (The Outlaw Josey Wales)
John Wilson (White Hunter Black Heart)

Harrison Ford:

John Book (Witness)
Jack Trainer (Working Girl)
President James Marshall (Air Force One)
Joe Gavilan (Hollywood Homicide)
Jack Stanfield (Firewall)
Jack Goddard (Paranoia)

Tom Cruise:

Joel Goodson (Risky Business)
Jack (Legend)
Joseph Donnelly (Far and Away)
Jerry Maguire (Jerry Maguire)
John Anderton (Minority Report)
Senator Jasper Irving (Lions for Lambs)
Jack Reacher (Jack Reacher)
Jack Harper (Oblivion)

Keanu Reeves:

Jonathan Harker (Dracula)
Jack Traven (Speed)
Johnny (Johnny Mnemonic)
Dr. Julian Mercer (Something's Gotta Give)
John Constantine (Constantine)

So those are some of the big action stars, but then there's the many J characters played by Wesley Snipes, Mel Gibson, Chuck Norris, Steven Seagal, and others.

The actual names for action stars Jackie Chan, Jet Li, Jean-Claude Van Damme, and Jason Statham.

And of course the most famous characters of Jack Ryan, James T. Kirk, James Bond and Jason Bourne.

Why is J the most powerful and apparently common letter to start a name with?

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