Profile of 'Days of our Lives' Character John Black

The character originated with Drake Hogestyn in 1986

Drake Hogestyn as John Black. Jeff Katz / Copyright 2008 NBC Universal

John Black has been played by actor Drake Hogestyn since the character’s introduction on “Days of our Lives” in 1986. Black was originally believed to be the reincarnation of Marlena Evans Brady’s late husband Roman Brady, thanks to a little plastic surgery and a lot of amnesia.

He even goes so far as to become involved in Roman’s ongoing feud with “Days” villain Stefano DiMera before the “real” Roman returns to Salem and John’s identity is disproven.

Despite the many, many twists and turns the character took, he and Marlena ended up together, although there were a few detours along the way.

Here are a few of the highlights of the John Black story line over the past several decades.

John Black Arrival in Salem

Known only as "The Pawn" when he first came to town in 1986, Black's face was heavily bandaged and he had no memory of who he was. He became a patient of Marlena Evans, who wanted to help him recover his memory. At first, she suspected John may be Stefano, but eventually found evidence that suggested John was Roman, her late husband believed killed by Stefano. 

Eventually John/Roman renewed their wedding vows in 1986. But it turns out the real Roman was held prisoner, and he returns in 1991. Chaos ensued (as it usually does on "Days"). Marlena was conflicted between the two men but ultimately decided to be with the real Roman.

Discovery of Forrester Alamain Identity

So if he wasn't Roman Brady, who was John Black?

Turns out he was Forrest Alamain, the brother of bad guy Lawrence Alamain and nephew of one of Salem's worst villains, Vivian Alamain. It was another of Salem's major villains, Stefano DiMera who convinced John/Forrest that he was Roman Brady. And yet a third Salem villain, Victor Kiriakis, helped John/Forrest figure out who he was.

 

John ultimately decided not to adopt the Forrester Alamain name. 

Marriage to Isabella Toscano

John married Isabella, who had discovered that she was Victor's daughter, in 1992. Isabella died of cancer not long after their wedding but lived long enough to give birth to the couple's only child, Brady Black. While he mourned Isabella, John's feelings for Marlena began to return. 

John Black Relationship with Marlena Evans

Following Isabella's death, Marlena and John had a one-night stand, even though she was still married to Roman at the time. Marlena became pregnant with their daughter Belle, and when he found out, Roman divorced Marlena and left Salem.

Eventually, through several twists and turns including John's relationship with Kristen DiMera and a plot involving Marlena and Roman's daughter Sami winding up on death row, John and Marlena were reunited. They remarried in 1999. 

Over the years, the couple faced many trials, including the reappearance of Marlena's first husband, Alex North, the ongoing feud with the DiMera family, the return of Kristen DiMera, and numerous other twists and turns worthy of "Days of our Lives."

John Black Family Tree

Here's a quick look at the children of John Black:

  • Brady Black (son, with Isabella Toscano)
  • Isabella "Belle" Black Brady (daughter, with Marlena Evans)
  • Claire Brady (granddaughter, via Belle).