Trevor Philips

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Trevor Philips
Grand Theft Auto character
Trevor Philips.jpg
Trevor Philips as he appears in Grand Theft Auto V.
First game Grand Theft Auto V
Created by Rockstar Games
Voiced by Steven Ogg
Motion capture Steven Ogg

Trevor Philips is a fictional character in the 2013 video game Grand Theft Auto V, a game in the Grand Theft Auto series. Trevor serves as one of three playable protagonists of Grand Theft Auto V, along with Michael De Santa and Franklin Clinton. Steven Ogg provides the voice acting and motion capture for Trevor.

Character design[edit]

Trevor is frequently seen wearing a plain and dirty white v-neck shirt, ripped up dirty blue jeans or sweat pants, and a pair of black boots. He also has several cuts on his face along with several tattoos, including one on his neck featuring a dotted line with the words "CUT HERE". During the prologue mission, which takes place nine years prior to the game's events, Trevor is seen sporting a different appearance. He has a mullet covering the entire back of his neck, and sports a mustache.[1] Like Michael and Franklin, Trevor's clothing and facial features can be altered during the game, using wardrobes, clothes stores, or barbers.

Dan Houser explained that Trevor "appeared to [Rockstar] pretty much out of nowhere as the embodiment of another side of criminality.... If Michael was meant to be the idea of some version of criminal control ..... what about the guy who didn't do that?"[2] He later described Trevor as "the person who's driven purely by desire, resentment, no thought for tomorrow whatsoever, completely id rather than ego-driven." He stated that Trevor "kills without remorse, like a true psychopath, but very sentimental for the right reasons when it suits him."[3]


Trevor is depicted as a sociopath in Grand Theft Auto V. He takes action in relentless and psychopathic manners, easily killing without remorse, however he is honest about everything and rarely shows hypocrisy, which he often points out in others. He appears to be very insecure about being born in Canada, and takes offense to people mocking his accent.[4] Despite his psychopathic actions, Trevor shows a level of emotion not common in most sociopaths; he seems to care about people very close to him, and he can be truly loyal to them. These people include his mother,[5] Ashley Butler,[6] Patricia Madrazo,[7] Maude,[8] Michael De Santa and his children Tracey[9] and Jimmy, Lamar Davis and Franklin Clinton. Nevertheless, the other characters regard Trevor to be dangerously unstable; during the prologue, Michael leads Trevor into a trap where he is supposed to be shot and killed, and later implores Franklin to plead insanity if he is ever arrested with Trevor. It is implied that the knowledge and extent of Trevor's crimes, the belief that Trevor's depravity escalated without anyone to keep him in check and his silence on the matter all weigh heavily on Michael's conscience.


Trevor is Canadian, born just north of the border with the United States. He grew up with a physically abusive father and an emotionally abusive mother.[5] This upbringing combined with Trevor's violent temper led Trevor to be severely unhinged, leading to numerous fights at school, including an assault on a teacher. However, Trevor loved planes, and at some point entered the military as a pilot,[10][11] but was quickly forced to leave after being reproved in a psychological evaluation.[12] Later on, Trevor committed crimes, the first one being a small robbery that landed him in jail for six months.[13] He would continue his criminal ways, including using his piloting skills to become a smuggler. Trevor eventually met Michael Townley and both men realised that they wanted to earn money by performing large heists, and both men became successful in doing so. However, their partnership began to strain after Michael married a stripper named Amanda and started a family with her.

During one of their heists with their mutual accomplice Brad Snider, Michael and Brad are shot by police while Trevor escapes, and he believes Michael died and Brad was sent to jail.[1] Trevor eventually settles in Sandy Shores, Blaine County, where he establishes a small criminal enterprise that he dubs "Trevor Philips Industries"[6] that smuggles weapons and manufactures methamphetamine, which he hopes will grow into a large empire. Due to raging abandonment issues, Trevor surrounds himself with two loyal friends that he kidnapped and brainwashed from their previous lives[14] named "Nervous" Ron Jakowski and Wade Hebert. Trevor also enters an uneasy truce with his competitors in Sandy Shores, including The Lost Motorcycle Club led by Johnny Klebitz, the Varrios Los Aztecas gang, and the O'Neil Brothers.

Nine years after the fateful heist, Trevor finds out that Michael faked his death, and is so spooked and enraged that he breaks the truce and kills most of his competition in one burst of violence, a deadly streak that continues when a potential game-changing deal with the Triads falls through.[15] He drives to Los Santos, taking over the apartment and ruining the life of Wade's cousin Floyd, and reunites with Michael. After Michael introduces Trevor to Franklin Clinton, the two perform heists again, this time including Franklin.[16] Trevor is determined to rob anything guarded by Merryweather Security Consulting, a private security firm that he dislikes,[17] but he often fails. As a result of not getting paid after a job, Trevor kidnaps Patricia, the wife of kingpin Martin Madrazo.[18] Due to her kind maternal nature and his own abandonment issues, Trevor falls in love with her and only returns her after much demanding from Michael.[19] However, the two stay in contact until the end of the game.

Trevor eventually discovers that Michael set him and Brad up, and that Brad is not in jail but buried in Michael's fake grave. This leads to Trevor vowing to kill Michael, but needing him alive for one last heist.[20] When that heist is successful, Trevor is so pleased that he lifts the death vow but still hates Michael.[21] Near the end of the game, Franklin is given a choice: kill Trevor, kill Michael, or let them live and face their enemies. If the latter is chosen, Trevor kills Haines, before capturing Weston, and killing him alongside Michael and Franklin. Trevor once again considers Michael his friend, albeit a friend that he hates, which Michael accepts.[22] If the former is chosen, Franklin meets up with Trevor, before chasing him with Michael to an oil plant. Trevor crashes his car into an oil tank, making it leak out everywhere. To finish things off, Franklin shoots the leaked oil, setting Trevor alight and killing him.[23] If Trevor and Michael are spared, they continue to spend time together with Franklin, during which Trevor eventually admits that he over-reacted after learning the truth about Brad, and refers to himself and Michael as friends.

Influences and analysis[edit]

When portraying Trevor, actor Steven Ogg cites Tom Hardy's depiction of English criminal Charles Bronson in the 2008 biopic Bronson as a strong stylistic influence on his portrayal of Trevor.[24] Ogg reflected that while Trevor embodies the violent, psychopathic Grand Theft Auto anti-hero archetype, he wanted players to sympathise with Trevor's story. "To elicit other emotions was tough, and it was the biggest challenge and it's something that meant a lot to me," Ogg said.[25]


The character of Trevor was met with generally positive feedback following the release of Grand Theft Auto V. Edge singled out Trevor as the stand-out of the three protagonists, which they owed to his volatile personality. Like Edge, Caroline Petit of GameSpot considered Trevor "a truly horrible, terrifying, psychotic human being—and a terrific character."[26] Eurogamer's Tom Bramwell, however, felt that Trevor undermined the other characters because he was a "shallow and unconvincing" sensationalised anti-hero, and that "his antics derail[ed] the narrative" and overshadowed the character development of Michael and Franklin.[27] Xav de Matos of Joystiq found all three character unlikable to the extent that they had an alienating effect on the story, noting that "though each character has a valid motivation for his journey, it's difficult to want them to succeed." He also felt that the ambivalence between Trevor and Michael was a tired device by the conclusion of the story as it became a "seemingly endless cycle" of conflict between them.[27][28]


  1. ^ a b Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Prologue")
  2. ^ Bertz, Matt (December 2012). "Go Big Or Go Home". Game Informer (United States: GameStop) (236): 72–95. 
  3. ^ Simmons, Alex; Miller, Greg; Lynch, Casey (13 November 2012). "Grand Theft Auto 5: Meet The Cast". IGN. Retrieved 30 December 2013. 
  4. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Rampages")
  5. ^ a b Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Mrs. Philips")
  6. ^ a b Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Mr. Philips")
  7. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Monkey Business")
  8. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Bail Bonds")
  9. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Fame or Shame")
  10. ^ Shuman, Sid (28 June 2013). "Grand Theft Auto V: What We Know". PlayStation Blog. Retrieved 30 June 2013. 
  11. ^ Aziz, Hamza (2 May 2013). "Grand Theft Auto V: Everything is bigger and better". Destructoid. Retrieved 30 June 2013. 
  12. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Friends Reunited")
  13. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "The Paleto Score")
  14. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Hang Ten")
  15. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Crystal Maze")
  16. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "The Merryweather Heist")
  17. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Scouting the Port")
  18. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Caida Libre")
  19. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Derailed")
  20. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Bury the Hatchet")
  21. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "The Big Score")
  22. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "The Third Way"; Option C: Deathwish)
  23. ^ Grand Theft Auto V (Mission: "Something Sensible"; Option A: Kill Trevor)
  24. ^ Bernstein, Joseph (30 September 2013). "An Interview With Steven Ogg, The Voice Of "GTA V's" Trevor". BuzzFeed. Retrieved 16 January 2014. 
  25. ^ Molina, Brett (9 October 2013). "Interview: Crime pays for 'Grand Theft Auto V' actors". USA Today. Retrieved 8 March 2014. 
  26. ^ Petit, Carolyn (16 September 2013). "Grand Theft Auto V Review: City of Angels and Demons". GameSpot. Retrieved 16 September 2013. 
  27. ^ a b Bramwell, Tom (16 September 2013). "Grand Theft Auto 5 review". Eurogamer. Retrieved 17 September 2013. 
  28. ^ de Matos, Xav (16 September 2013). "Grand Theft Auto 5 review: How to take it in America". Joystiq. Retrieved 16 September 2013. 

Preceded by
Luis Lopez
Grand Theft Auto: The Ballad of Gay Tony
Protagonist of Grand Theft Auto
alongside Michael De Santa and Franklin Clinton
Grand Theft Auto V