Jesse Custer is a preacher who merged with a creature that has escaped from Heaven and develops the ability to make anyone do anything he says. Along with his ex-girlfriend, Tulip, and an Irish vampire named Cassidy, the three embarked on a journey to find God.
Jesse Custer was born to John Custer and Christina L'Angell. When he was toddler, his family was attacked by Jody and T.C., who worked for Christina's family. They were all kidnapped and taken to Angelville, the L'Angell's house. There, Marie L'angell, Christina's mother, ordered John to marry Christina, and said that they would raise Jesse as a man of God. She also threatened to kill them if they ever tried to leave. After a while, John Custer decided to try and escape. Jody and T.C. caught them before they were two miles away. John Custer was executed, and Jesse decided he would never cry again. After John died, Christina was never the same. She eventually tried to escape, but was shot by Jody and presumed dead. With both of his parents gone, Jesse was left in the care of Marie L'Angell. When Jesse was much older, he escaped, and started working his way toward Texas.
Return to Angelville
Jesse met Tulip O'Hare, and the two fell in love. Months later, they were on a park bench in Northern Texas, and Jesse announced that he was taking her to California. She went to buy him a beer, and once she was gone, Jody and T.C. sat down on either side of him, and announced that they were taking him back to Angelville. They told him that they would kill Tulip if he resisted.
With no fight left in him, Jesse turned to God, which was what Marie L'Angell had been waiting for. She pulled some strings and got him a church in Annville, and he was appointed Preacher. He eventually tired of life there, and started drinking copious amounts of alcohol. One night, he decided he was fed up with the people of Annville, and told them so the next morning. He was beat up, and he woke up the next day with intent to preach about forgiveness. However, before he could give his sermon, Jesse merged with Genesis, a creature who had escaped from Heaven, and gained the ability to force people to do anything. This merging resulted in an explosion that killed everyone in Annville but Jesse.
The Search for God
After the Annville incident, the police searched for whoever caused the explosion. Angels from Heaven had hired the Saint of Killers, an immortal being whose only purpose was to kill, to find Genesis and kill it. Meanwhile, Jesse, Tulip, and Cassidy were just outside of Annville, standing around Cassidy's pickup truck, while Jesse described the sensation of having Genesis in his head to the others. The trio were then surprised by the police, led by Hugo Root. Jesse told all the police to drop their guns and let them go. When all the police obeyed, Jesse realized the power he had been given. After the three drove away, the Saint showed up. In the ensuing carnage, all of the cops were killed, except for Root. Later, Jesse and Cassidy were involved in a bar fight, which was reported to the police. Root had informed his superiors about the situation, so the crime was flagged. Soon enough, Jesse, Tulip, and Cassidy were located at a motel. Root took Jesse by surprise; catching him at gunpoint while Custer was exiting the motel. Root then proclaimed that if Jesse tried to speak, he would pull the trigger. When the Saint showed up, Root was distracted. Arseface, Root's son, tried to stop the Saint from killing Root, but before anyone could do anything, Jesse ordered everyone to stop, and forced the Saint to holster his weapons. Then he made the Saint call down the angels who had hired him. DeBlanc, an Angel from heaven, informed everyone present that God had quit, the moment Genesis was created. Jesse swore to find God, and Tulip and Cassidy followed. Jesse ordered Root to do something against Root's beliefs, and Root killed himself afterward.
Angelville Once More
Later, Jesse and Tulip were attacked by Jody and T.C.. Jesse's power didn't work on the two, so him and Tulip were taken to Angelville. Marie L'Angell claimed that God was on their side, and that was the reason why Jesse's power couldn't affect them. Jody shot and killed Tulip, leaving Jesse in a state of shock. John Wayne, a figment of Jesse's imagination who had been with him since his father died, talked him into fighting back. Jesse tried using his power on T.C., and when it worked, he laid waste to the entire estate. Tulip helped, who had been resurrected by God as a show of good faith. The two killed everyone there, and burned the house down.
During the search, Jesse, Tulip, and Cassidy ended up at one of Jesus DeSade's legendary orgies. Herr Starr, a member of The Grail, was searching for Jesse, and arrived at DeSade's party a while afterward, with a small group of armed men. They captured Cassidy, who had told them that he was Jesse in order to save Tulip's life, and took him to their headquarters, Masada. Jesse and Tulip began the journey to Masada, and Jesse met one of his dad's old war friends at JFK airport. Later, Tulip and Jesse stole a car and drove the rest of the way to Masada. At a hotel nearby, Jesse left to find Cassidy himself, worried that Tulip would get hurt. Upon arrival, he ordered the guards to take him toThe Allfather, the man in charge of the Grail. The Allfather revealed that he was in fact Jesse's cousin, and threatened to kill him for what he did to Marie. The Allfather forced Herr Starr to duel Jesse in a fight to the death, but Starr ran, leading Jesse to a cell in the basement.  He showed Jesse that the Grail had captured a fallen Angel, who was also the father of Genesis. Before the two could speak to it, however, the Saint of Killers showed up. The Saint was about to kill Jesse, but the angel saved him by revealing that Jesse was the only person who could tell him what happened to his family. The Saint agreed to help Jesse escape Masada, if he would later tell him the real story. The angel then told Jesse that God would be at Masada that night. Jesse decided to save Cassidy first, torturing Starr into telling him where Cassidy was. God had visited Cassidy, saving his life and giving him a message for Jesse. Jesse saved him and the two escaped, though Jesse never managed to see God.
Cassidy told Jesse of a friend of his who was a voodoo priest. Cassidy said he may be able to help him access Genesis's memories. Cassidy, Tulip, and Jesse traveled to New Orleans to meet him. On the way, they ran into Arseface, who threatened to kill Jesse, in revenge for what had happened to Root. Jesse talked him down, and offered him a ride to New Orleans. However, once they got there, Cassidy was immediately noticed by members of Les Enfants du Sang, a cult dedicated to a vampire that Cassidy had killed. Jesse, Cassidy, and Arseface met Xavier, Cassidy's friend. He said he could help them, but not until the following night. Three members of Les Enfants du Sang attempted to kidnap Tulip, who had opted to go to the hotel instead of meeting Xavier. She killed two of them, and ordered the last one to take her to the cult. She shot a few more, then left, threatening to kill anyone who came after her or her friends. The next night, at midnight, Xavier took them all out to a cemetery, including his girlfriend Janis. He introduced Jesse to Luther, his python, who would assist with the hypnosis. He put Jesse under, allowing him to see the true history of the Saint of Killers. While he was under, Les Enfants du Sang showed up, attacking everyone, but targeting Cassidy. They wanted to force him into turning them into vampires. Janis was killed, and Cassidy was beheaded, though he healed later. Jesse decided to head west, and Tulip and Cassidy joined him.
The Ultimate Mexican Standoff
Jesse bought some peyote from a Navajo, and resolved to use it to speak to Genesis directly. Tulip and Cassidy took him to a remote spot in the desert to take it, so they'd be safe. Little did they know, Herr Starr had decided to follow him. Starr also anticipated that the Saint would show up, so he came prepared with an army. Jesse told the Saint what happened to his family, and the Saint proclaimed that they were even, before defeating Starr's army. Jesse, Tulip, and Cassidy were escaping in a plane before Starr called in a E.M.P. missile strike on the Saint. The Saint survived, but the E.M.P. caused Jesse's plane to stop working. Jesse was flung from the plane, with Cassidy trying for dear life to hold on to him. Jesse forced Cassidy to let go, after telling him to tell Tulip that he loved her. Jesse fell into the desert.
Jesse woke up after being nursed back to health by Johnny Lee Wombat, a disgraced wannabe astronaut, though he was missing his left eye. Jesse stayed with Wombat for a while, but decided to move on and search for Tulip and Cassidy. Along the way, he found Skeeter, a dog who became his new pet. Jesse found his friends, but after he witnessed the two kissing he left without making himself known. He made his way to Salvation, Texas. After rescuing Lorie Bobbs, the sister of his childhood friend, from a group of men who were harassing her, he was offered the position of deputy. He declined, but said he would be sheriff. The current sheriff agreed, and Jesse quickly began cleaning up the town. He also found out that his mother, Christina L'Angell, lived here. Odin Quincannon, a local businessman, approached Jesse and told him to leave his employees alone. Jesse didn't let up, so Quincannon decided to have him killed. Eva Oatlash, Quincannon's lawyer, assisted him. After his first attempt, a car bomb, failed, Quincannon hired the KKK to help him. After that failed, he hired an ex-Navy Seal to place bombs around the town. Quincannon blew up the sheriff's office, and told Jesse to meet him. Right before he blew up the rest of the town, Odin was struck by lightning, though he managed to escape by shooting a local and sneaking off in the resulting chaos. Jesse followed him back to the meatpacking factory he owned, where he discovered that Quincannon had been having sex with meat dolls. Jesse killed him, and moved on from Salvation.
Jesse went to a deserted boat dock and took the peyote he had bought. He immediately started hallucinating, and his hallucinations showed his deepest fears and regrets, also revealing how he really felt about Jesse and Tulip. He then had a flashback, revealing what really happened when he fell from the plane. He died, but God had a conversation with him. The coversation angered God, and in a fit of rage he bit Jesse's eye out. He ressurected Jesse, but left him missing an eye.
Jesse drove to meet Amy Grinderbinder, a mutual friend between him and Tulip. It turned out that Tulip was visiting her too, so the two met again. Amy left to give them their privacy, and after a while, Jesse and Tulip started to talk about everything that had happened. Tulip revealed that Cassidy had given her a steady supply of booze and drugs so that her judgement was so impaired as to let him sleep with her. After six months, she came to her senses and left, shooting him as she went. Jesse found one of Cassidy's old acquaintances, Sally, and she told him of all the awful things that Cassidy used to do. Jesse came back to Tulip, but just after he did, so did Cassidy. Jesse intimidated him into leaving, but not before making plans to meet in two months..
Custer's Last Stand
Jesse visited DeBlanc and Fiore, and interrogated them about past events in Heaven. Then he went and disturbed the Saint of Killers's grave, drawing him out. He convinced the Saint to help him kill God, and sent a message to Herr Starr telling him where he would be in one week. Jesse drugged Tulip, and left her at the hotel, as he was afraid she'd get hurt. Jesse met Cassidy as planned, and planned to fight him in front of the Alamo at five a.m.. Starr prepared his forces to attack Custer, and Hoover and Featherstone followed. Jesse met and fought Cassidy as planned, but the fight ended when Cassidy committed suicide by sunlight.  Tulip had woken up and read the note that Jesse left for her, and had rushed to try and save his life. Featherstone, who now realized that Starr was purely being selfish, attempted to kill him, but was shot down herself. Hoover attempted the same, with the same result. One of Starr's men shot Jesse, killing him and Genesis. Tulip killed Starr in revenge. However, Cassidy had made a deal with God, guaranteeing the survival of both himself and Jesse. God resurrected Jesse, without Genesis, and Cassidy, who was no longer a vampire. Jesse met Tulip, and the two rode off into the sunset on a stolen horse.
- Divine Empowerment: Jesse Custer is possessed by a powerful entity from Heaven, called Genesis. It is the offspring of an angel and demon.
- Mind Control: Jesse Custer is possessed by a powerful entity called Genesis. Granted access to the word of God, he can physically force people to do whatever he wants them to do, through the power of God.
- Hand-to-Hand Combat (Advanced): Jesse is an extremely efficient opponent, able to overpower multiple strong foes.
- Tactical Analysis
- 66 Appearances of Jesse Custer (Preacher)
- 19 Images featuring Jesse Custer (Preacher)
- 3 Quotations by or about Jesse Custer (Preacher)
- Character Gallery: Jesse Custer (Preacher)
This character exists under the Vertigo Imprint which is intended for Mature Readers. Vertigo titles although they may cross over into regular DC continuity.
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