|“||It's time to show Kong that man is king!||„|
Lieutenant Colonel Preston Packard is a soldier character created by Legendary Pictures who made his first appearance within the 2017 MonsterVerse film, Kong: Skull Island, and served as the main human antagonist.
|“||We are soldiers. We do the dirty work, so that our families and our countrymen don't have to be afraid! They shouldn't even know a thing like this exists!||„|
— Packard to Conrad, justifying his actions for attempting to kill Kong
Packard was a fearsome soldier who was intensely loyal to his troops, and he always jumped at the chance for another mission. He had a great deal of contempt for journalists like Mason Weaver, whom he felt cost America the war in Vietnam, where he was stationed. He also had an insatiable desire for vengeance after the death of his men at Kong's hands in their first encounter. Though Kong was in reality only trying to stop Packard and his squad from waking the Skullcrawlers, Packard saw him as the enemy and, demanding his pound of flesh, would stop at nothing to kill Kong, even when told otherwise and how it would have grave repercussions for the whole world.
For Packard, Kong was an enemy simply because he presented himself as one, and Packard willingly risked his men's safety to fulfill his desire for revenge. His desire to wreak vengeance on Kong eventually drove him insane and led to his literal death at Kong's hand.
Packard is initially civil to Weaver when they meet but quickly turns sour since he believes people in the media like her caused the troops in Vietnam to get a bad rep and made America pull out of the war without a proper victory, therefore making everything he went through and the lives lost under his command meaningless. He even goes as far as calling a camera a more dangerous weapon than a gun. Thinking little of Weaver, Packard brushes off and disregards whatever advice or words of wisdom she has to offer. To him, Weaver is a threat if not also a traitor, so as far as Packard's concerned if the predators of Skull Island don't get her, he will.
Packard respects Conrad as a fellow military man but still has reservations about him being a foreigner and the fact that he joins the expedition for money.
Since Kong presents himself as an enemy and kills most of his men, Packard is determined to make him pay regardless of the consequences in the grand scheme of things. Packard is a strong believer in "an eye for an eye", so because of Kong's attack against him, Packard feels it's completely within his right to strike back at Kong and bring him down through Old Testament-style justice. Plus, in Packard's eyes, if he doesn't bring down Kong, then man's evolution as a species would have been for naught.
Packard is the commanding officer of the Sky Devils helicopter squadron who flies the film's protagonists to Skull Island for an expedition to map and explore the uncharted terrain. Angered by Kong killing some of his men during his initial rampage, he goes into a maniacal quest to kill Kong out of vengeance.
After gathering most of the survivors to him, Packard interrogates William Randa, a Monarch senior official, who tells him that the expedition to Skull Island was never about geology, as he had implied, but to prove ancient Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organisms such as Kong existed, and the threat they might pose.
As he and the remainders of his squad push on, they encounter and kill a Mother Longlegs and eventually search for and locate James Conrad and his team. They try to search for Jack Chapman, who unknown to them has already been eaten by a Skullcrawler. Conrad and his crew try to reason with Packard, convincing him not to kill Kong as his absence would leave the Skullcrawlers alone to lay waste to the island and its natives, though Packard, slowly going insane, ignores their pleas, saying that after he kills Kong, he will kill the Skullcrawlers as well.
After Packard refuses, he sets a trap for Kong using napalm and knocks him out before planting the seismic charges around him, before readying to kill Kong with explosive charges. Most of his team turn against him when Conrad, Mason Weaver and Hank Marlow intervene, but Packard threatens to kill Kong once more in a tense standoff. However, his actions end up awakening a giant Skullcrawler dubbed 'The Big One', and as his men flee, he tries to detonate the explosive charges to finish Kong off, with the ape crushing Packard to death under his fist.
- As per tradition for most Samuel L. Jackson roles, Packard is portrayed as a violent loudmouth with a penchant for expletives (particularly Jackson's famous "motherf---er" lines).
- Packard is portrayed somewhat like Captain Ahab from Moby Dick, being so obsessed with killing Kong that he recklessly puts his men's safety on the line.
- He is one of six characters in the MonsterVerse portrayed by an actor with a role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, being played by Samuel L. Jackson (Nick Fury). The others are Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Quicksilver), Elizabeth Olsen (Scarlet Witch), Tom Hiddleston (Loki), Brie Larson (Captain Marvel) and John C. Reilly (Rhomann Dey).
- His quote "Hold on to your butts!" as the helicopters traverse the storm is a direct reference to Samuel L. Jackson's line in Jurassic Park.
- J.K. Simmons was originally going to portray Packard but scheduling conflicts resulted in Samuel L. Jackson replacing him.
- Throughout Kong: Skull Island, if one looks closely, they'll see Packard constantly switches between being clean-shaven and having a little bit of stubble on his face.
- Preston Packard is the first human villain in the MonsterVerse franchise, followed by Jonah Alan.
List of appearances
- Kong: Skull Island (First appearance)
|Kong: Skull Island|