Max (voiced by Robert Tinkler in the animated series) is one of the two titular characters of the Sam & Max franchise.
Violent, impulsive and indulgent in the extreme, Max is the source of much of the franchise's unique humor. Max is an active member of the Freelance Police alongside his long-time partner and friend, Sam.
Max is a 3-foot tall, white-furred anthro "rabbity-thing". His appearance is generally cute and cuddly, but contrasted by his enormous sharp-toothed grin, which remains plastered on his melon-like head at almost all times. He has big feet and long ears that always stay upright, as well as a pair of glaring, beady eyes. Apparently, he has a metal plate in his skull. He also has a belly button.
Max is best described as silly, funny, feisty, immature, reckless, impatient, annoying, destructive, and violent. However, it's shown he can be quite emotional and caring, more so in the cartoon series than in the video games. Purcell describes him as 'being made up of pure Id', and when it comes to comparing him and Sam, he states that "Sam is the guy we are, while Max is the guy we want to be."
Max enjoys extreme violence and prefers to solve problems aggressively. He has a slight distaste for the long stories, anecdotes, and sentences that Sam constantly spouts forth, often asking Sam and others not to use different words such as 'ensue' and 'acumen'. He shares Sam's enthusiasm in just about anything, especially if it involves large guns and trouble. He also has very poor hygiene, as he sometimes tastes his own belly button lint, and once had a large "suspicious growth" behind his ear. Sam has commented on his pungent bodily odors on more than one occasion.
Max always carries a Luger around, and when asked where he keeps it usually responds with "None of your damn business.". He is fairly trigger-happy with it in the early comics, but this is rarely seen elsewhere. Like Sam, he's a lousy shot and is never seen usually hitting anyone. Instead of shooting guns, Max prefers to maul his foes and torture them in whatever way he can come up with. This fails miserably about as often as it works; despite his boundless energy and love for violence, Max isn't particularly good at fighting.
Sam has been Max's best friend ever since their childhood. They attended high school together and later became untrained policemen, though it is unclear precisely when. They are incredibly close and will become physicallt uncomfortable when separated for any reason, both willing to delve into great lengths to protect each other. Max is known for showing his affection towards Sam in the form of violence, but he harbors no ill will towards him. Several examples in the series show that they are "married".
Max serves the same questionable father-figure role to the human Geek as Sam does. They seem to get along fairly well, oftentimes with The Geek being the more responsible of the two. The Geek seems to care about both Sam and Max quite a lot for taking her in, despite having to clean up after them almost constantly.
Although only appearing once, Max seems to form a parental relationship with Gary. Helping him overcome his anger issues and resolve his relationship with his parents.
Max has one-sided animosity towards Lorne, and finds his presence annoying. He avoids him when he can, and will try to give him the slip whenever he shows up.
Max seems to admire Ruth a great amount as he follows her instructions and sayings without complaint.
Max and Bosco seem to get along well enough, but it is apparent that Max enjoys pestering Bosco. He and Sam go out of their way on many occasions to increase Bosco's paranoia for their own amusement.
Much like his relationship with Bosco, Max is a (questionably) friendly acquaintance of Sybil's. He enjoys seeing what her latest career path is, and oftentimes humors her latest career services alongside Sam. Sybil has expressed that Max seems "a bit improbable" and once implied that he was Sam's imaginary friend. However it's clear that he cares enough about her to surrender himself for the birth of her child.
Much like Sam, Max seems to tolerate Jimmy Two-Teeth for the most part. They allow him to share their residence, but aren't afraid to get violent with him when there's a disagreement or they need something from him (i.e. the office phone in Culture Shock, or Coins in Reality 2.0)
As his short-term co-star on Midtown Cowboys, Max did not seem to get too well acquainted with the overall uptight chicken. Due to Pennyworth's generally standoffish behavior, Max took to poking fun at him instead. He refers to him as "Mr. Featherly" outside of the context of the TV show, purely to bother him.
On their initial meeting, Agent Superball is dismissive of Max as they seem to be interrupting his job. However, when Max becomes President of the United States, he clearly gains more respect for him, as Max is now his superior. After this him and Max have a friendly relationship. But Superball does not hesitate on threatening to kill Max for the good of the United States when he transforms into an otherworldly beast (Season 3, The City That Dares Not Sleep.)
Sam and Max first met Stinky in Season 2, Ice Station Santa, at 'Stinky's Diner'. Neither Sam nor Max seem to care much for her dismissive attitude, and the fact that she refuses to call them by their real names. Initially, the duo thought Stinky killed Grandpa Stinky, but turns out it was all a misunderstanding.
Both Sam and Max appear to have known Grandpa Stinky since they were preteens (evidenced in Season 2, Moai Better Blues.) and have frequented his diner. The tradition continuing till the present day. All the while Grandpa Stinky remains with the same cynical attitude towards them.
Max gets along well with Sal.
In Season 2, Chariots of the Dogs, Sam and Max travel to the '60s and meet her. Momma Bosco furiously asks Max if he has a problem with women and he replies that girls are a "huge waste of time". This made Momma Bosco quickly fall in love with Max. Despite not sharing any sort of romantic feelings towards her, he does become good friends with her, and admires her for punching Stinky in the face. To get Momma Bosco to fall out of love with him, they had to go back in time and make Max love women. Later on, after questioning him, he says that it will wear off (because he could never stop loving Sam).
Max obviously admires Flint Paper in both the comics and the Telltale series. Max sees Flint's violent nature as something to aspire to be. In some ways, Flint is like Max without Sam, in that he is very unhinged and has nobody to hold him back. Max likes looking over into Flint's office to see what he's doing and is often amazed by what he finds.
Max didn't like the player at first but now he does.
Max's family were shown in the comic The Damned Don't Dance, but none were named. Other than in Culture Shock where Max implies that most of his (large) family are criminals or in jail, and in Bright Side of the Moon, where he responds to "It's the Lunar Lander" with "So was my aunt Tillie, but they can't prove anything", he doesn't talk much about them. It is implied that he has a negative relationship with his father due to his response that Bosco is "taking it too far" when the store owner compares Max to his father. In the season 3 episode, The Tomb of Sammun-Mak, Max's great-grandfather is shown. His name is Maximus, and he appears to have work with Sam's great-grandfather, Sameth.
Likes and Dislikes
- The Geek
- Agent Superball
- The color orange
- Glazed McGuffins
- Cracking Sam up
- Beating up things
- Taunting and annoying others (especially bad guys)
- Killing Nazis/Klansmen
- Armpit farting
- The Desoto
- "Petting" the "unicorn"
- Cherry pie
- Eating non edibles
- Beer (but rarely ever drinks it)
- Pornography magazines
- Hugh Bliss (formerly)
- Momma Bosco
- Singing in the shower
- Pain (of others and himself)
- Shooting stuff
- Burning stuff
- Jokingly harassing Sam
- The Rubber Pants Commandos
- Lucky Charms
- Rice Krinkles
- Buddy Hackett
- Highway Surfing
- His lack of inventory
- Girls (only romantically and sexually so)
- Having his brain stolen
- Being alone
- Being separated from Sam
- Being called a Bunny or "Hello Kitty"
- Cheese from a pressurized can
- Renaissance reenactment participants
- Being hugged (Except by Sam)
- Sam's lame songs
- Hugh Bliss
- Auntie Alice
- Valentine's day
- Swiss Cheese
- Ventriloquist dummies
- Country Music (As stated after being hit into the "Dunk the Beast" in Hit the Road)
- Romance movies
- "That's none of your business" (in the animated series)
- "Death from above! Death from above!" (in the animated series)
- "That's none of your damn business" (in the comics and games)
Young Max has been in all three mediums Sam and Max has been in. He is a precarious, bold, and somewhat self-absorbed child. He is always seen with Sam and stands up for him whenever someone really hurts him. His appearance remains almost exactly the same, except for the fact that he is smaller overall and has short ears.
Max's impulsive behavior is probably a main factor in the dangerous mischief he and young Sam's perpetrate, such as setting fire to things.
In the Telltale games, Max isn't above name calling and bullying Sam around like the other kids do. Though this may be viewed as taking Sam's friendship for granted, considering Sam's spontaneous nature coupled with the way he will treat Sam as an adult, he doesn't seem to really mean what he says and just wants a reaction from the usually timid Sam.
He's also selfish and addicted to video games. He would rather stay indoors and play them than socialize with anyone except for Sam, because video games are the only things that "really understand" him.
In Moai Better Blues, young Sam reveals that a girl named Jennie Tallarico has a crush on him, yet Max doesn't reciprocate those feelings, due to her willingness to French Kiss anyone in their school.
Not much is known about Max when he was a teenager. In Moai Better Blues, he claimed that Sam begged him to club Sam's opponents in the knees so that Sam would be able to win surfing trophies. Max also was about to go into a story in Chariots of the Dogs about something major that happened to him which turned him off on girls indefinitely. However, he decided not to tell it since there was no flashback.
Old Max/Future Max
Old Max was first seen in the animated series' episode The Dysfunction of the Gods where Sam and Max undergo rapid aging. He suffers from bad back posture, hair loss, and is somewhat overweight, but he still has his destructive tendencies.
In the Telltale episode Chariots of the Dogs, Max looks as if he never aged past his current self. He acts somewhat different, though, almost grown up. This is probably because he has the responsibility of taking care of Sam, who is not doing well in his old age (since dog years are rough). He is very condescending to current Sam and Max, who he sees as primitives.
He's mastered volcanology, a reference to earlier in the game and a hint to a puzzle in the room he's in. He and Sam work for Stinky Corp, but suspects that the company is making its popular super-adhesive out of molemen.
Elder God Max/Giant Max
In the end of Beyond the Alley of the Dolls, the penultimate episode of The Devil's Playhouse, Max accidentally ingested some dark spores, transforming into a giant, Lovecraftian monster and went on a rampage throughout New York. Sam, Papierwaite and Sybil went inside him to return him back to his normal and usual self before "The Final Imperative" (targeting Max with a nuclear strike) was activated. In the end, they escaped, leaving Max's Super-Ego in charge of removing his brain tumor, which presumably triggered his behavior. Unfortunately, the bomb, built into one more Maimtron, still flew into Max's chest and was activated. In an act of self-sacrifice, Max used his teleportation power to transport to Stinky's cell phone, which was with her on Skun-ka'pe's ship in space. Upon arriving, the bomb detonated, killing that timeline's Max along with Stinky, Skun-ka'pe and the brain of Sammun-Mak.
- Max usually calls himself a lagomorph but has known to refer to himself as a rabbit on occasion.
- Max's mouth can disappear when he's surprised, confused, or pondering.
- A hat referred to as "Max's Severed Head" was a limited time promotional item in the game Team Fortress 2 and was given to TF2 players as a reward for purchasing The Devil's Playhouse on Steam before April 26, 2010.
- The weapon "Lugermorph" (based on Max's iconic firearm) and the item "License to Maim" (a badge with the logo of the Freelance Police) were also reward items within Team Fortress 2 and could be earned by defeating Max in Poker Night at the Inventory.
- A crude model of Max appeared as an Easter egg in the Star Wars: Dark Forces (which the franchise that Ewoks produced in Canada, like its animated version) video game series.
- In music, Max can play violin.
- There have been a few instances suggesting that Max is a masochist.
- According to Abe Lincoln Must Die! Max knows Pi to the 1000th decimal.
- Max is polytheistic.
- Despite being an incredible poker player, The Inventory banned him because he kept eating the poker chips.
- William Kasten, the voice actor for Max during most of the Telltale games, is a complete mystery. He has no photo, no interview, and no prior work to Sam & Max. Some have speculated that the name is just a nickname, according to one of the workers at Telltale Games, when asked if William was real, he replied "He's real enough".
- Max does not know how old he or Sam are, however, he must be at least thirty-five, as that's the minimum age to become President of the United States.
- Max doesn't use the internet that much, but his favorite website is "www.telltalegames.com/store"
- Max can transfer his psyche into Sam's hand, as seen in the comic "A bad day in the moon"
- According to Sam in Poker Night 2, Max is always "The Chosen One" every time the Freelance Police deals with a prophecy, Max attributes this to his face being a common symbol of chaos and destruction.
- Max is a collector of action figures of Ash Williams from the Evil Dead franchise, he has all of them, including the extra rare "Naked Ash" figure, although he criticized Sam for asking Claptrap an action figure.
- Max has a running joke of being banned to enter places due to his height.
- Max has a list of "things he wants to do when he gets turned into a zombie", and a yearlong section dedicated only to things he would do to his high school teachers.
- For some reason, Max often thinks of disastrous scenarios that always end with him eating Sam.
- Despite him being naked most of the time, he doesn't tolerate seeing others naked.
- He doesn't believe in magnetism.
- His full name is either Maximillian (in Situation: Comedy and Abe Lincoln Must Die!) or Maxwell (in Christmas Bloody Christmas).
- As of Abe Lincoln Must Die!, Max was President of the United States. Between Beyond Time and Space and The Devil's Playhouse, Max was somehow re-elected. However, upon his mutation and death, Superball took his place as acting President. With his revival, it's unknown if he tried to get re-elected or got his position back on a technicality.
- On the Road's Disguise o' Rama reveals that Max used to be an actor for stag films (aka pornographic movies made for men.)
- He possibly has short-term memory loss due to him forgetting he doesn't like girls. As evidence in The Penal Zone where he momentarily forgot that Sam was a giant talking dog.