Jack Holyoak claims to have put in years of study with some of Earth's most powerful mystics and magicians, including Agatha Harkness, Hellstrom, Doctor Druid, Magik, the Scarlet Witch, and even a week with Mephisto.
When Tina Punnett's parents disappeared on one of their regular visits to Joshua Tree National Park, she called another friend of the family, Doc Samson, to investigate. Tina's parents disappeared while visiting the spirit of an old friend, Cam Larson, which they had bound to the desert shortly after he was cremated there. The Punnetts had sent messages to Tina telling her something felt off, and that Cam had warned them of dark happenings in the mystic world. Bearing that in mind, Samson decided to pay a visit to Doctor Strange to see what insights he could offer. It was their they they first met Jack Holyoak, who had apparently been serving as Strange's assistant and apprentice while Wong was away.
Strange had gone into a trance three days prior, but had foretold of Samson's visit and left instruction with Holyoak, telling him he would awaken at that time. At this point, Holyoak's attempt to waken Strange prematurely with the Sword of Surtur accidentally turned Strange into a frog, as had been done to Thor on one occasion. After being reverted by Tina's kiss, (and chewing out Holyoak), Dr. Strange informed Samson that he could not accompany him. Instead, he suggested, Samson could take the young Holyoak. "Sometimes his ambitions exceed his grasp, and his impetuousness overwhelms his common sense", said Strange of Holyoak. "You would be doing me an immense favor by seasoning him for me." Samson reluctantly agreed, and the trio set out for Joshua Tree National Park.
While Samson and Tina talked local law-officer Nighthorse (who told them of the local legend of the Living Totem, Jack attempted to invoke a psammead (sand elemental) who might be able to tell them what had happened. After accidentally conjuring up a large cluster of mushrooms and creating a miniature geyser that knocked that hat off his head, Jack finally managed to instead summon the spirit of Cam Larson. Cam admitted immediately that he was behind the Punnetts' disappearance, and that he had used the Living Totem to capture them. He would not release them until they released him from this plane of existence. At that moment the Living Totem returned and attacked the group. Tina, Nighthorse, and Jack were all captured immediately (with Jack dropping his grimoire in the process), and Samson was knocked out after a brief skirmish.
Later, after the group has been reunited with Tina's parents and Samson has awakened, Cam appears and demands to be released from the Earthly realm. Samson convinces the couple to release their friend's spirit, and Holyoak severed the karmic threads keeping Cam's spirit from transcendence. The Totem, terrified at the thought of losing his only friend, attempted to absorb Cam's spirit into his own body before he could depart. Samson disrupted the process by dividing the Totem into two pieces, and eventually subdued the creature through repeated division. Samson believed that the Totem could be restored to sanity through a combination of conventional therapy and magic. With that in mind Jack Holyoak was allowed to stay with Doc Samson.
Later, Tina, Jack, and a rehabilitated Living Totem (now going back to his human name, Whistle Pig) accompanied Samson in his investigation of New Orgonon. Samson travelled to New Orgonon to investigate the strange behavior of his former colleague, Sam Larouquette, but did not uncover anything overly suspicious before he was telepathically dominated by an unknown force. Rescued by Whistle Pig, Tina and Jack ran from an enthralled Samson and discovered that the inhabitants of New Orgonon were being dominated by a telepathic, mutant plant called Weed. Jack and Tina were able to weaken Weed with herbicide, and Whistle Pig finished it off with the commune's "cloudbuster".
At some point, Whistle Pig's old rival, Cold Winter resurfaced in the form of a possessed Kachina doll, determined to steal the Living Totem body for his own. Jack Holyoak incinerated the doll (although he only meant to contain it), thereby eliminating the threat.
Most recently, Jack, Tina, Whistle Pig, and Samson travelled to Las Vegas for the Consumer Electronics show. While electronics were Tina's primary motivation, Jack had come for the gambling. Jack and Whistle Pig hit the slot machines, not suspecting that they had been tampered with by the Leonard Samson from another dimension. Through unknown means, the two were trapped in the machines. With Tina Punnett trapped in a virtual-reality device (also the work of the doppleganger) the alternate Leonard Samson was left free to engage Doc Samson without interference.
Jack claims to have put in years of study with some of Earth's most talented mystics. He has shown an ability to cast spells ranging in difficulty from simple (such as conjuring flame in his hand) to complex (such as summoning the Twilight Sword, the Sword of Surtur). While his ability to produce magical effects is undeniable, his ability to produce a desired effect is more questionable. About half of the time either his spells end up backfiring or he becomes confused and casts a completely different spell instead.
Jack Holyoak keeps a large grimoire of spells. He has been shown on at least one occasion to carry a ceremonial knife.
While Jack's ceremonial knife could be used for offensive purposes as well as ritualistic ones, their is no indication that he has ever used it as such, that he would have any proficiency in doing so, or that he keeps the knife close at hand.
- The character of Jack has been inspired from an Italian writer and videogame journalist, Alessandro Apreda, close friend of Jack's co-creator, artist Fabrizio Fiorentino. Thus the "A" sported on the Jack's jacket on the first issue of Doc Samson mini-series.
- 4 Appearances of Jack Holyoak (Earth-616)
- Media Jack Holyoak (Earth-616) was Mentioned in
- 1 Images featuring Jack Holyoak (Earth-616)
- Quotations by or about Jack Holyoak (Earth-616)
- Character Gallery: Jack Holyoak (Earth-616)
- Doc Samson No. 1 (March 2006)
- Doc Samson No. 2 (April 2006)
- Doc Samson No. 4 (June 2006)
- Doc Samson No. 5 (July 2006)
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