Grand Theft Auto V was unique in the series (and in gaming as a whole) in that it had three protagonists. In free roam, you had the option to change between them at will. Other times a mission required you to play as a specific character. And some missions even gave you the ability to alternate between all three characters in order to complete specific objectives.
One of these characters was Franklin Clinton, who is perhaps the most underutilized and underappreciated protagonist in the game. Here, we'll be shedding a little light on the man and telling you ten facts you didn't know about Franklin Clinton.
10 He Is 25 Years Old
Franklin is the baby of the group. While Michael and Trevor are older, seasoned criminals, Franklin is an up-and-comer who just wants to make a few extra bucks. Michael proceeds to take him under his wing and serves as a father figure throughout much of the game, which is fitting, seeing as how he's about double Franklin's age.
Franklin was born in South Los Santos in 1988, and assuming Grand Theft Auto V takes place in 2013, that would make him 25 years old. He's not exactly a spring chicken, but there's still plenty of time for him to learn the ropes!
9 He Had A Terrible Father
Franklin's life was cursed from the very beginning. While we don't know the identity of Franklin's father, we do know that he was horribly abusive (both physically and mentally) towards Franklin's mother. This resulted in his mother developing a cocaine addiction, as she turned to the drug to escape her problems with her partner.
If that wasn't slimy enough, his father left his mother while she was pregnant, running away to an unknown location and leaving his mother a poor, drug addicted single parent. Her addiction and drug use grew so severe that she passed away some time after Franklin's birth. So, yeah, Franklin may have some daddy issues to work through.
8 He Turned To Petty Crime At A Young Age
As a child, Franklin met Tonya Wiggins and JB Bradshaw. The pain over his tragic past, and the influence of both Wiggins and Bradshaw, soon led Franklin down a path of crime. He began illegally selling cigarettes on the street with Bradshaw, an act that resulted in his grandfather chasing him around the entire city.
He is still "close" to Tonya and JB, as one mission involves Franklin helping them with their tow truck business. Unfortunately, the couple have developed a severe addiction to crack, making them both lazy, desperate, and destitute.
7 He Was Expelled From High School
Unfortunately, Franklin continued this life of rebellion throughout high school. As a teenager, Franklin attended Davis High School in... uh, Davis, an area in southern Los Santos. And while he seems like an intelligent man, Franklin did not do well in school.
In the mission Pulling Another Favor, Tonya recalls their time in high school and remembers that Franklin did not pay attention in class and never applied himself in any considerable way. He also assaulted a teacher for an unspecified reason, resulting in his expulsion from the school. It is unknown WHEN this occurred, so we can't say just how much education Franklin had received at the time of expulsion.
6 His Life Of Crime Got Him Arrested
Fresh out of high school, Franklin turned to a life of crime with his friend Lamar in order to make money. The two primarily dealt drugs, although they also stole cars and robbed small banks. During one of these robberies, Franklin and Lamar walked away with $2,000 in cash, but a dye pack exploded all over the money, making the entire ordeal utterly worthless.
This life of crime got so serious and reckless that Franklin was eventually arrested in 2008, when he was just 20 years old. He was sent to Bolingbroke Penitentiary in Los Santos, the same prison you can be robbed in front of during a random encounter. Luckily, his time in prison served as a revelation, and Franklin began to turn his life around.
5 He Was Once Arrested For Indecent Exposure
Franklin is no stranger to being arrested. During the mission Eye In the Sky, the player learns that Franklin had once been arrested for indecent exposure. Although the details are rather slim, we do learn a few key facts. Franklin tells Trevor that his pants were sagging and that the police were partaking in racial profiling, a combination that resulted in his arrest.
Of course, that's just Franklin's side of the story, although we have no reason to disbelieve him. This bit of information naturally infuriates Trevor, as he is not exactly one to believe in the sanctity of the law and its enforcement.
4 He Is Likely Christian
Although we don't know much about the characters' religious beliefs, we can safely infer that Franklin is a Christian. When Michael quotes the Bible after pulling down Martin's house, Franklin immediately recognizes it as the Book of Matthew. This indicates that Franklin has a deep understanding of the Bible, which of course gives credence to the idea that he is a Christian.
You also have the ability to give Franklin a cross tattoo with an inscription from Corinthians. Pre-release artwork alos depicts Franklin with a tattoo of praying hands, and he also states that he believes in a "white man's God." While he doesn't come out and say, we think it's pretty obvious once all the dots are connected.
3 His Original Design Featured A Different Haircut
It seems as if Franklin's physical appearance was altered not long before release. In the gameplay trailer, the beta appearances, AND the official artwork, Franklin can be seen sporting a different haircut. This one contains a small stripe cut out of his hair on the right side of his head, compared to the uniform haircut that appears in the game.
This design can also be seen on the game's character selection wheel, perhaps proving that his default appearance was changed at a very late stage in the game's development. We're not sure why Rockstar decided to go with the haircut that they did, but it's still an interesting factoid nevertheless.
2 He Cannot Play Tennis
Grand Theft Auto V is stuffed to the brim with things to do, and one of them includes playing tennis. And we don't know if you've noticed, but Franklin cannot actually partake in the game. Michael obviously plays, as he has a court in his backyard. Trevor is also a fan.
However, you don't have the ability to play tennis while playing as Franklin. We're not sure why this is, and an in-game explanation is never given. It's doubly curious when you consider Franklin's physique and age because you'd think that he would be all about athletics and exercise. Regardless, it's an interesting gameplay element that we wish we knew more about!
1 He Has An Ex-Girlfriend Named Tanisha
Franklin begins the game single and alone, but that wasn't always the case. He was going steady with a woman named Tanisha Jackson, but she called it off before the events of the story. Her reasons were multiple, including Franklin's lack of ambition, his continued life of crime, and her brother's recent passing.
The latter served as a major influence in the decision, as her brother was also involved in street crime and gang life. Franklin can actually be seen and heard talking with Tanisha throughout the game, and she later marries another man. We suppose Franklin and Tanisha simply weren't meant to be.