MBTI: John Wick- ISTP
The archetypical antihero we’ve come to know and love was played up to nicely in John Wick. And who to better portray an understated misanthrope than Keanu Reeves?
Well, maybe Daniel Day-Lewis but preparation for the role may have caused him to learn how to use a handgun to actually murder over eighty people and Summit Pictures probably just couldn’t handle that right now.
It’s only natural that the lone wolf ex-hitman would be ISTP, isn’t it? I’m pretty sure they’re the leading type in the number of characters typed on this site. But when you get so many searches and questions for action-oriented characters, you’re going to lean toward E or ISTP naturally.
While any type has the potential to be the main character in the action genre, if you want personality to take a backseat so that the action can be front-and-center, ISTP is your best bet. Not because ISTPs don’t have personality of course, but when the killing starts, their instincts take over.
In reality, while many an ISTP may have actually killed people, their instincts will usually take over for the benefit of whatever task they’re taking part in, which is hopefully not killing people. Could be drinking the weekend away, playing video games, working out, or if you’re familiar with the descriptions that get passed around MBTI sites- X-Treme SportZZ.
For Wick, this is clear in his previous line of work, while his retirement involved a very nice car. Whether he loved working on it or just joy riding, a rush is what the ISTP is after.
ISTP preferences, being solitary figures, can be seen in John. He retires from the life you’re not about to be with the woman he loves, and when she dies, he saddens, and goes back to being alone. Of all the types to quietly soak in misery, ISTPs may do this to the best. I know because one of them brags to me about it. How you can love misery seems to defeat the purpose of misery itself, but I’m not meant to understand all things. I can only read about ISTP and observe them.
Not surprisingly, both John Wick and the ISTP I speak of love their dogs more than they like people. Though John Wick’s dog didn’t deserve what she got while this sucker has it coming for all the times he’s tried to herd me.
But enough about my friend and his dog and more about John Wick. With the ISTP dominant function being Introverted Thinking (Ti), there’s a reason he comes off so unassuming and it’s not because he’s depressed. In fact, ISTPs generally handle stress really well. But more on that in a moment. But yes, he probably is depressed too.
Even still, Ti is quiet and analytical as you probably already know. While heavy Te users don’t mind spouting out every bit of information they hold onto, heavy Ti users may keep much to themselves as their preference in logic can be much harder to explain in the first place since it’s a kind of “mixing and matching” with the incoming data and previously held information.
And while Te is in-your-face about whatever situation they feel strongly about, Ti holds back. It’s why lead Ti users (ISTP and INTP) don’t say a third of what they know until they’re in a situation they’re comfortable in. Then they don’t shut up to the two people (maximum) they’ll talk to at a time.
Tying this back to Wick, he doesn’t mind keeping things to himself and dealing out as little information as possible. In contrast to his enemies that never seem to shut up, Wick is cool and confident, quietly sizing up his situation; i.e., getting back into his old life with new people.
The Se of Wick is clear as it takes up most of the movie. No, really, this doesn’t need explaining. The total kill count by Wick in the movie is an estimated 80, give or take of course. Efficiently, Wick dispatches most of them with bullets to the chest and head.
Anybody could become a weapons expert, a musical master, or a pro surfer, but as Keirsey explains, it’s the Artisan groups that naturally excels in these types of activities. He also says that they aspire to be “Virtuosos” and all groups aspire to be a specific “something.” But SP types hoping to be geniuses of whatever their chosen area is.
Wick’s specialty was clearly killing. For the rush? The money? A nihilistic lifestyle before he met his future wife? Maybe all of it. Probably all of it.
But as the John Wick website reads, “A perfect day for John is a day in the Mustang with a full tank, and open road and Daisy riding shotgun.” Sounds legit.