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Rambo, John J. Born 7-6-47 in Bowie, Arizona. Of Indian-German descent - that's a hell of a combination. Joined the army 8-6-64. Accepted special forces, specialization: light weapon, medic, helicopter and language qualified. 59 confirmed kills. Two Silver Stars, four Bronze, four Purple Hearts. Distinguished Service Cross and Medal of Honor. You got around, didn't you? Incredible.
~ Murdock reading Rambo's file.

Marshall Murdock is the secondary antagonist of the 1985 live action film Rambo: First Blood Part II. He is a corrupt field operative who is conducting a search for American POWs still in Vietnam.

He was portrayed by the late Charles Napier, who also played Officer Krackney in The Simpsons.

Role

During the start of the film, Murdock meets up with Colonel Sam Trautman and his protege John Rambo, going through the latter's military record. Murdock briefs him for the search of missing POWs inside a POW camp (headed by Lieutenant Colonel Podovsky) and advises that he photographes the prisoners instead of rescuing them. He also warns Rambo not to engage the enemy.

As Rambo is sent over to the POW camp (with the help from a resistance fighter named Co Bao), he ignores the order and rescues a POW named Banks from confinement. Rambo then heads over to the extraction site with Banks, despite them being chased down by several Vietnamese soldiers (led by Captain Vinh and Lieutenant Tay). Once he hears Rambo calling for extraction, Murdock calls off the extraction helicopter, fearing what will happen when the public hears about it. Angered by this, Trautman furiously confronts Murdock for betraying Rambo and letting him and Banks be captured by the Vietnamese once again, but Murdock stands by his decision as it turns out that he's fooling the government into believing that there are no POWs left in Vietnam and is making a proft out of it as the US government will not have to spend more money to resuce POWs or pay ransom to get them back, which according to him might end up in the hands of the US enemy, the Soviet Union.

After Rambo's capture, Trautman and Murdock radioed the POV camp for the veteran. Instead of radioing for pickup, Rambo makes a threat that he will come for Murdock before escaping. Hours later following Co's death, Rambo manages to free all the POWs (including Banks) from confinement after killing all the Vietnamese and Soviet soldiers (including Podovsky, Vinh and Tay) before they all escaped back on a helicopter back to Murdock's base. As the POWs are transported to safety, Rambo angrily shoots down Murdock's base with a machine gun before confronting him in person.

Realizing now that he's in big trouble, a nervous Murdock attempts to pacify Rambo by attempting to explain his actions, but Rambo cuts off his miserable excuses, holding out his knife and saying "Mission accomplished". However, rather than stabbing Murdock, Rambo instead spares him by telling him to rescue the other POWs from Vietnam and come forward to the public about the truth, or Rambo will make him pay for his corrupt actions.

It is unknown what happened to Murdock following the events of the film, although it can be presumed that he is convinced and agreed to continue rescuing the remaining POWs, knowing that Rambo wasn't bluffing. Another possible situation is that he could have been arrested and sent back to the United States where he could have been charged for his crimes.

Trivia

  • Murdock is the only antagonist of the franchise to not die or be directly injured by John Rambo and also that's concerned solely with profits, which makes his actions all the more heartless.
  • Murdock likely changed his ways and done the right thing, thus redeeming himself. This is never confirmed, however. 
  • In the novelization, after Rambo arrives in Murdock's office, it is revealed that he soiled himself. 
  • He is somewhat similar to Will Teasle. Both initially present themselves as pleasant and benevolent friends of working people, before their true nature is revealed. Both are also "non-action" villains, meaning that they usually have other people do their dirty work for them. Murdock's actor Charles Napier even shared similar facial features with Teasle's actor Brian Dennehy.

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See Also
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           RamboTitle.png Villains

Novel
Rambo | Wilfred Teasle | Art Galt | Orval Kellerman | Reeves Rambo

Movies
First Blood: Ligget County Sheriff Department (Will Teasle, Art Galt, Ward, Mitch Rogers, Balford & Shingleton) | Orval Kellerman | Clinton Morgan | Earl
First Blood Part 2: Lieutenant Colonel Podovsky | Marshall Murdock | Sergeant Yushin | Captain Vinh | Lieutenant Tay | River Pirates (Trong Kinh) | Lifer | Ericson
Rambo 3: Colonel Zaysen | Sergeant Kourov | Tomask | Shop Assistant
Rambo: Tatmadaw (Major Tint & Lieutenant Aye) | River Pirates
Rambo: Last Blood: Hugo Martinez | Victor Martinez | El Flaco | Gizelle | Manuel

Television
S.A.V.A.G.E.: General Warhawk | Sergeant Havoc | The Gripper | Nomad | Mad Dog | Black Dragon | Snakebite | Dr. Hyde

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