Jack Horner (comics)

This article describes a work or element of fiction in a primarily in-universe style. Please help rewrite it to explain the fiction more clearly and provide non-fictional perspective. (October 2009) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
Comics character

Jack Horner

Jack running from Fabletown,
cover art for Jack of Fables #1

Publication information Publisher

Vertigo Comics

First appearance

Fables #1 (July 2002)

Created by

Bill Willingham

In-story information Team affiliations


Notable aliases

Jack Be Nimble, Jack Frost, Jack the Giant Killer, Jack O\'Lantern, Jack of the Tales, John Trick, Jack Candle


Master con artist
Questionable high strategic skills
High physical endurance
Superhuman strength
Fourth wall awareness
Dragon transformation
Low-level reality warping

Jack Horner is a fictional character in the comic book series Fables by Bill Willingham. His first appearance was in issue #1 of Fables, and he continued as a regular character of the series until leaving the series for his own title, Jack of Fables. The character is based on various nursery rhymes and fables with characters named Jack, including Little Jack Horner, Jack and the Beanstalk, Jack and Jill, Jack Be Nimble, Jack Frost, Jack O\'Lantern, and Jack the Giant Killer, and among others.


This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (May 2022) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)

Jack is typically portrayed as a rather benign trickster, always looking for quick ways to make a buck. However, Jack also displays a complete disregard for human life or the feelings of those around him, traits most often seen in those with sociopathy. Despite his scheming and reckless personality, he is a devoted foe of the Adversary and a capable combatant in his own right, due to his years of experience fighting giants. He can also have true feelings for others (he asks the Beast about Snow White and her cubs, he mourns his wife\'s death, and he considered putting his own safety at risk to protect Gary when the Librarians captured them, and they were having a car accident). In the series, Jack creates a film trilogy of his adventures to increase his popularity in the Mundy world, making him nigh-immortal (a theory that is still strongly disputed to this day, even by Frau Totenkinder). In his devoted spin-off series \"Jack of Fables\", his nigh-immortality seems to be reinforced by other factors as well: he is the son of a literal woman and one of the most popular male Fables, and he has made countless deals with many devils during his Jack O\' Lantern days. Jack is often presented as believing himself to be far smarter than he truly is, and for a man who has lived a long time, he has little regard for history. (At one point, he compares himself to Sam Bowie and Hector and how, \"like them, I will be victorious.\") The common thread is how Jack honestly believes he is the most important person around and that only his needs and desires matter.

The characters of Jack Sprat and Jack Ketch have been established as completely separate entities from Fable Jack, who is in fact a representation of Jack Horner.

In an interesting plot twist, it was recently revealed that Jack was not, in fact, involved in the Beanstalk or Giant-killing incidents, but is actually an unknowing copy of an older fable named Wicked John. Upon Wicked John\'s death, some great power decided to write the trickster back into some later stories, but got his name wrong, thus creating Jack. John was later revived, and now both fables exist and enjoy a greatly antagonistic relationship. However, Mister Revise later revealed after the War with Bookburner in a retcon, that Jack was indeed the one who sold his cow for magical beans, and that he is the son of a Literal, and Prince Charming.


Leave a Reply