- "My name is Michael J. Caboose, and I hate babies!"
- —Caboose in Visiting Old Friends
Captain Michael J. Caboose is a main character in Red vs. Blue and is voiced by Joel Heyman. He is portrayed as one of the most eccentric characters in the series and is consistently shown to be mentally abnormal. His behavior varies from merely somewhat dim-witted in Season 1 to almost completely divorced from reality by, and since, Season 3. He has appeared in every season to date, although he only cameos in Season 9. Additionally, during Relocated and the first half of Recreation, he was the only remaining member of his team.
Caboose can be considered as, by far, the most unintelligent character in the series, although at first this wasn't noticeable. In Season 1, Caboose was dim-witted and less eccentric than he was in later seasons, where he then later showed near detachment from reality. In the course of the series, he has been repeatedly subjected to mental trauma and physical brain damage, which is visible in the downward spiral of his behavior. Because of his intelligence and unusual behavior, he acts very childish: treating serious situations like a game, envious for not being favored at some points, and having illogical reasons for his actions, which frequently earns him the scorn and disrespect of the series' other characters.
Despite this, many characters show care for him, including the Reds, who he treats as neighbors instead of enemies. Caboose always tries to impress Church and help him as well, stating that they are best friends, despite the fact Church is constantly annoyed by him. Partially due to positive early fan reaction, Burnie Burns, the main writer for the series, focused the storyline on Caboose and Donut (Dan Godwin), the Red Team's rookie. The staff later made Caboose less intelligent to add more humor in series. Later on Caboose, arguably, became the most iconic character of Red vs. Blue.
Role in PlotEdit
Misadventures in Blood GulchEdit
Caboose first appears in Episode 3. Arriving with a tank named Sheila, he soon annoys the Blue Team's self-appointed leader, Church by accidentally calling his girlfriend a slut, and is consequently tasked with guarding the flag inside the team's base and waiting for a nonexistent general. Meanwhile, Simmons and Grif have sent their team's rookie, Donut, on a fool's errand for nonexistent supplies. In a mutual misunderstanding, Donut mistakes Caboose for a shopkeeper, and Caboose mistakes Donut for the "general" and allows him to take the flag. When Church and Tucker learn of this they try to get the flag back via teleporter. However, they end up getting attacked by Grif and Simmons in the warthog. Seeing his teammates in trouble, Caboose gets into the tank who introduces herself as Sheila.
Caboose accidentally kills Church while using Sheila and narrowly escapes a bombing run that disables the tank. Caboose then begins to show affection towards Sheila. Afterward, Caboose and Tucker contact Blue Command for help and are sent Freelancer Tex. After Tex manages to regain the Blue Team flag from the Reds she is captured by them. Church then reappears as a "ghost" and tells Tucker and Caboose about his relationship with Tex, prompting the three to rescue her. After they do, Tex fixes Sheila for them and attacks the Reds. At this point, Caboose becomes possessed by O'Malley, Tex's evil artificial intelligence who transmits himself to Caboose via radio before Tex is killed.
In Season 2, Caboose starts to talk and act unusually, due to his infection by O'Malley. Tex then reappears as a "ghost" and reveals to the Blues that the only way to truly defeat O'Malley is to enter Caboose's mind, eliminate him, & prevent him from entering anyone else. As a result, the Blue Team devise a plan to kill O'Malley, with Church and Tex entering Caboose's Mind as ghosts in an attempt to kill the A.I.. There, they encounter Caboose's incorrect mental images of others and successfully knock O'Malley out of Caboose's mind. Unfortunately, O'Malley infects medic Doc, who was calling Command, and goes on a rampage in Blood Gulch, kidnapping the Red Team's robot Lopez in the process. After O'Malley escapes through a teleporter, the Reds and Blues work together to stop him.
Into the "Future"Edit
At the end of the season, Caboose becomes stranded with Sarge in an unknown location after a teleporter malfunctions. Caboose and Sarge escape from the Grunts, another set of respawning Red and Blue teams constantly fighting each other. Simmons helps the two escape to the Teleporter Nexus and the three regroup with the other Reds and Blues to fight off O'Malley at Sidewinder. After a bomb blasts most of the characters into the future, but Church into the past, Church learns of the Great Destroyer from Gary, a computer, who says that "the Great Destroyer" will be known as the stupidest life form in the universe".
Church assumes that this description refers to Caboose, but later events and the introduction of a new character, the Alien, cause the characters to suspect that the Great Destroyer is not Caboose. After the Blues encounter the Alien and learn of its quest Caboose is sent along with Tucker, Tex, and Andy, a talking bomb constructed by Tex, on the quest. However, after the quest fails and Tex chases after Freelancer Wyoming, the remaining three return to Blood Gulch. Upon their return, Andy reveals to Church and Caboose that Tucker has been impregnated with an alien baby, angering Church and confusing Caboose. After they call Doc, O'Malley, and Lopez to help Tucker, Tucker gives birth to the baby and O'Malley leaves Doc.
Return to Blood GulchEdit
Caboose is later injured by 'donating' some blood to Tucker's Alien baby, which the Alien impregnated him with before being killed by Wyoming. Afterward, he regains his strength and is introduced to a new member on the Blue Team: Sister. Tex suddenly returns to Blood Gulch and attacks the Blues, in order to look for O'Malley. As a result to assist Tex, Caboose is picked by his team to distract Sheila while Tex shuts her down. Although Caboose is reluctant at first, they succeed, but Sheila is shut down just before she reveals the location of O'Malley to Caboose. He convinces his team of this, and they decided to place Sheila into the newly arrived ship.
The Blues are suddenly contacted by Vic Jr. to attack the Red base. So, Church and Tex tell Caboose to stay behind, in order to ensure the success of the transfer. After the transfer completes, Caboose informs Tex by radio of the location of O'Malley; the leader of the Blue Team, Captain Flowers . Tex then pins down Church, believing him to currently be the leader, until Wyoming and Gamma ambush them. After a series of time distorting events, the Blues and Wyoming clones battle. Caboose distracts Gamma, now in the tank, and allows Tucker and Sheila to capture him in a firewall.
Afterward, Tex goes on a rampage to obtain Omega. Omega enters Caboose, leading Tex and Church to do so as well. When they exit, Caboose informs Church of Tex's location. However, Tex manages to obtain O'Malley, and enters Sheila, taking Junior, Gamma, and the newly arrived Green Alien along with her. Returning to Blue base, Caboose asks Church- "Do you ever wonder why we're here?" Church answers, but Caboose corrects Church, by telling him that he wanted to stand in the shade. Church agrees and the two stand in the shade.
Caboose reappears in Reconstruction: Chapter 3, having been stationed at Outpost 28-A "Rat's Nest" where he has been tied up and tossed in the brig for safe keeping. Before being transferred out of Blood Gulch, Church told him to upgrade his armor to Mk. VI, but instead he downgraded to Mk. V. The Rat's Nest Blue Team's leader, Lieutenant Miller, clearly dislikes Caboose and is delighted at Washington's request to take Caboose away. In the next episode, Caboose is reunited with Church (to the latter's chagrin), and the three investigate Sheila's logs at Valhalla. When Wash receives a Recovery Beacon from Agent South Dakota, the three head to Outpost 48-A and rescue Delta from the Meta, who flees to Zanzibar.
When the three arrive at Zanzibar, Caboose is seen knocked out by the Meta. Wash managed to nurse him back to life with his healing unit, but was unable to revive him. Because of this, Church had to go into Caboose's mind again, this time encountering the mental image of Washington, as well as a "memory" of Delta he had left behind bearing the important message "Memory is the key." Caboose eventually wakes up, but not until halfway through Reconstruction: Chapter 12. The following episode Caboose, Church, and Wash watch as the Reds try to capture a warthog for the Blues to use. While Washington is distracted by an offending hornet, Church leaves his body to find Tex.
After the battle, Caboose comes up with the idea of getting to command in a tank and the team infiltrate the Project Freelancer compound, where Caboose is left with the Reds as lookout, while Wash and Church venture to the A.I. Containment Facility. When they return, Caboose spots command troops coming towards them when suddenly the Meta appears nearby. Caboose is given Epsilon for safe keeping and Sarge, Simmons, Grif and Caboose are forced to escape the EMP. Although the Reds' jeep is disabled, Caboose manages to escape the EMP by driving off a cliff. In the epilogue, he is the sole occupant of the Blue Base in Valhalla and still in possesses Epsilon. Inside the base, Caboose is seen trying to get the A.I. into Tex's old body.
Secret Best Friend ProjectEdit
As of the end of Relocated, Caboose has acquired several other sets of equipment, with his intentions unknown. In Recreation, Caboose gathers parts from Sheila in order to create a new body for Epsilon. In Free Refills, he tries to hold a conversation with Epsilon (which is incapable of responding) reminiscing about his misadventures in Blood Gulch, only stopping when he notices that Donut has appeared behind him. Caboose excitedly welcomes Donut and the latter delivers a message to him. Donut, very weak, only manages to say, "Tuck....Tucker. He needs help...it's in...the sand..." before collapsing. Caboose mishears him and begins to question Donut for more, eventually coming to the conclusion that Tucker is in Donut's pocket.
In Catching Up, Donut finally manages to tell Caboose everything: that he was debriefed by Command and sent to the site where the teams originally "landed" in Season 3 after the bomb went off. There he discovered a distress message from Tucker, saying to get help from Church. Caboose explains his own current status, including his plan to build a "super best friend" from Epsilon and various other parts. When Donut asks if they can get help from the man who previously helped Caboose, the two make a call to Washington, who has now been imprisoned, and ask for him to come immediately. Afterward, Donut makes his leave to the Red Team before the Reds send Grif on a suicidal mission to rescue Donut.
After having permission from Donut to use the Reds' holographic room, Caboose sneaks in with Epsilon without being seen by any Reds, except Grif. While inside, Epsilon activates and releases a mental image of Delta. Epsilon takes the form of Delta so Caboose has a better feeling to this form and tells Caboose about Tucker's secret mission investigating a large power source. When the Reds find Caboose inside, Caboose states that he is going to leave and rescue Tucker. Grif volunteers to go with Caboose, knowing what will happen when he dies, and Sarge accepts Grif's volunteering and decides to go with him and Caboose. The three leave, driving straight into the water, and stop on a beach so Caboose could have another bathroom break.
Confronting the Dig TeamEdit
The team then arrives at a desert and enter a minefield. Caboose and company try to make it through the minefield, but Caboose gets blown sky high until landing unharmed. The group then encounter a mysterious elephant driver and his alien partner Smith. The man tells them they're in a restricted zone, and that a team of at least one human and one alien are only allowed. The group can't leave yet because their jeep is busted, so the man lets them stay as long as they don't go looking for artifacts. Afterward, the man leaves the team to ponder among themselves.
Grif and Sarge get suspicious about why they can't go anywhere else, Caboose just gets suspicious about why every thing's on the left. When Grif discovers that all of the radios are missing from the jeeps Caboose offers to help try and fix them. Grif asks him if he plans to confirm the radio is missing or how he plans to try and fix something that isn't there. When he remembers who he's talking to, Grif promptly gives up trying to reason with Caboose. Soon after, Caboose is crouching next to the warthog with Epsilon, asking for Sheila, Delta, and Tex. Sarge and Grif question him about what he's doing, and Caboose acts defensively about his activities.
When the Elephant driver, who reveals his name to be C.T., comes over to Sarge and Grif, he suddenly realizes Caboose isn't among them and threatens Grif if Sarge doesn't say where Caboose is. An alarm is then heard and the man's squad go running over to the Elephant. Caboose gets caught by the digging team and is interrogated by C.T.. Suddenly, the temple opens. C.T. orders his dig team to kill the attacker in there and not to let the temple close. With the window of opportunity open, Caboose, Sarge, and Grif escape, eventually bumping into the dig teams' attacker: Tucker.
As the group and Tucker take refuge inside the temple, Caboose wanders off to find a vessel for Epsilon. After looking through multiple items, Caboose discovers a Monitor and installs Epsilon into it. Caboose and Epsilon get discovered by the Reds and Tucker about their work. As Caboose explains to everyone that it's Epsilon and not Church, Epsilon starts to hover away. Epsilon then accidentally turns off his short term memory, but Caboose restores it by hitting him. Suddenly, C.T. and his team infiltrate the temple and steal Epsilon, prompting Caboose, Sarge, Grif, Tucker and the Religious Aliens to give chase. Fortunately, the group manage to kill C.T.'s men and Epsilon fires a laser at C.T., killing him as well.
In Revelation, Caboose makes a eulogy for C.T.'s dead comrades after Epsilon begins having old memories. Later on, Caboose is attacked by the Aliens for losing their deity and tries to fend them off. When Epsilon recovers, Epsilon-Delta tells Caboose that Epsilon is searching through his memories to find a certain part and says that Epsilon will most likely repeat the cycle like the previous incident. Caboose then follows Epsilon-Church to the Freelancer Offsite Storage Facility, where they unlock Epsilon-Tex in a secret room. As Tex was beating the Reds and Tucker, Caboose stayed in the safety of the crane control room, where he argued with F.I.L.S.S. about helping his friends.
Afterward, Caboose accidentally causes the group to enter "armor lock", in order to stop Tex, but Caboose's armor does not enter lockdown due to his downgraded helmet. When Epsilon frees everyone, he and Tex venture to a secret base. Soon after, Caboose discovers Epsilon's recovery beacon at the facility and warns the others. After a passionate speech from Sarge, the Reds and Blues fly to the base via Pelican and save Epsilon. However, Epsilon and Washington are attacked by the Meta, prompting the group to fight him, while Caboose stays behind. After the Reds and Tucker defeat the Meta, Epsilon enters the capture unit to find Tex and tells Caboose to remember before departing.
Some time later, Caboose and the other Reds and Blues are confronted by Carolina, and agree to help her recover Epsilon from the UNSC Archives. After spotting Epsilon through the sky rip of the unit, Caboose pulls him out and brings him up to speed. He reveals that Carolina needed him to find the Director and that Blue Team replaced Church with Washington. The group then leave the archives and make a pit stop at Zanzibar. While there, Caboose questions Carolina on his teammates' whereabouts. Carolina shoots a pile of fusion coils, causing them to explode, and tells Caboose to "put that into words", in which Caboose makes an explosion sound with his mouth.
The group then arrive back at the desert to find C.T., where the Reds and Blues discuss their concerns about Carolina. Simmons asks Caboose if he could transfer Epsilon to something bigger than the monitor, in order to spy on Carolina, in which Caboose agrees. The group then insert Epsilon into Carolina's mongoose, much to Epsilon's dismay. When Carolina leaves with Epsilon, Wash gathers the group into a temple before dark. While there, Caboose is seen poorly spying on Washington and tells him that he was trying to gain information from him since they're friends, but leaves after failing.
When Carolina and Epsilon return, the group make it back to Valhalla to investigate the ship, where Caboose shows Tucker their new Blue base. Soon after, Tucker and Caboose speak with Epsilon, infuriated at the fact that he has gathered no information. Epsilon tells them to back off, and finally decides to have a word with Carolina alone. After talking with her, the two gather everyone inside the Red team's Hologram Chamber, where the final plan to kill the Director is discussed. However, the group refuses to help Epsilon and Carolina on their mission, causing Epsilon to blame them for all his problems. This results in the group to leave the Chamber, upset by Epsilon's words. Eventually, Caboose is one of the last of the group to leave.
After the quarrel, Doc soon gives the Reds and Blues an inspirational speech, reminding them on how much they've changed since they first met. Following Doc's speech, the group decide to go help Epsilon and Carolina but soon become surrounded by a trio of UNSC Police Hornets. Luckily, they steal the Hornets and fly off to Carolina and Epsilon's location. Upon their arrival, the group save Carolina and encounter an army of robotic Tex Drones. To even the odds, Epsilon manually angers Caboose into smashing through the robotic army. Afterward, the others follow suit and battle the opponents but are soon overwhelmed. Epsilon successfully manages to shut down the drones and then tells the group that he and Carolina must complete the next task alone.
After Carolina and Epsilon confront the Director, they decide to relocate the Reds and Blues to a place where they can call home. However, on their way back home, the Reds and Blues crash land a pardoned ship in an unknown location. So as a result, Tucker, Caboose, and Washington settle at their new Blue base, where Tucker asks Caboose of Epsilon's whereabouts, in which Caboose replies that "he is somewhere, but just not here right now", before retreating back to base. As time passes, Sarge asks Caboose for a proposition, which results in Caboose giving him the Blue team's tank.
Frustrated, Wash takes Caboose and regains the tank. Upon returning back to base, Caboose begins to feel depressed over Epsilon's departure and decides to go for a walk. On his walk, however, he discovers a large robot and manages to repair it, naming it Freckles. After introducing Freckles to his team, the latter's presence startles everyone, but Caboose treats Freckles like his own pet and the latter follows his every command. After Simmons defects to the Blue team, a resulting argument between Wash and Tucker results in the mistaken promotion of Caboose to Captain, as enforced by Freckles. Sarge and Grif then suddenly attack them in their Warthog, but Freckles destroys the Warthog and nearly kills Sarge.
Fortunately, Donut arrives with Doc and Lopez, and halts the commotion. He then tells the group that the pilot left after dropping them off, infuriating the teams, who proceed to attack him. Afterward, Caboose, now the mistaken leader, poorly gives orders to Simmons, Tucker, and Washington. After Simmons provides internet to the canyon, Caboose takes a picture of Freckles in a sombrero and uploads it to Basebook, a social media site created by Simmons. Soon afterward, Wash confronts Caboose and tells him that he has to accept the fact that Church is gone, as his pain in being abandoned has caused him to replace Church with Freckles. Wash also apologizes for not being a better friend to Caboose and, as a token of goodwill, gives him a new helmet.
Battle at Crash Site BravoEdit
Overjoyed by Wash's gift, Caboose accepts the helmet and gives Wash back his Captain position. Suddenly, four white armored soldiers attack Blue base, where Freckles is ordered to cover Caboose when the latter walks around aimlessly, due to his visor's malfunction. After Freckles kills the soldiers, the Reds and Blues regroup until they are confronted by both Felix and Locus. Locus asks the group to come with him, but they refuse. When Locus disappears, the group interrogate Felix, who explains that they crash landed on the planet Chorus, whose society is undergoing a civil war between the New Republic and the Federal Army of Chorus.
Felix asks for the group's help, but they decline, only wanting to leave the planet. Nonetheless, Felix and the teams prepare for an attack, where Caboose confesses that despite their differences, he and Tucker are really good friends, as the latter fixes his helmet. Afterward, the Reds and Blues are attacked by both Lopez 2.0, while in control of C.C., and the Federal Army of Chorus, led by Locus. During the battle, Locus incapacitates Donut, Sarge, and Wash, and Freckles is damaged while protecting the others, alarming Caboose. Luckily, New Republic reinforcements arrive to assist but are unable to fend off the Federation. As a result, Caboose, Tucker, Simmons, and Grif are forced to retreat into the tunnels with Felix before it collapses.
After the battle, the remaining four are taken to the New Republic's underground base, where they are informed of Wash, Sarge, and Donut's capture. The New Republic leader, Vanessa Kimball, persuades them to stay and fight in order to help rescue their friends and end the war in the process. While the group expresses their doubts, Kimball explains that her troops are in need of a sign of hope and pleads for the four's help. As a result, Caboose, Simmons, Grif, and Tucker have the New Republic soldiers perform drills, much to Caboose's enthusiasm.
Joining the New RepublicEdit
After some time, Caboose, along with Simmons and Grif, undergoes a training exercise where he takes command of his "Blue team" squad. However, the exercise results in chaos and the three are scolded by Kimball. Afterwards, Kimball informs Grif, Simmons, Caboose, and Tucker that she has discovered the location of their friends, based on secret Federal Army information Tucker received, and states that if the four can prove to her in five days that they are skillful enough to lead a team, she'll allow them to rescue their friends. Unable to get help from Felix, the Reds and Blues recruit Smith, Bitters, Jensen, and Palomo for assistance, where Caboose campaigns to become leader, but loses to Tucker.
As the group begins their training, Simmons and Jensen install capture software onto everyone's helmets, in order to record their sessions. However, despite their rigorous training, the squad is laughed at by both the recruits and other Rebels. Soon after, Tucker gathers Caboose, Simmons, and Grif inside a bunker and tells them that they will rescue their friends without the recruits, surprising them. The four then depart on two Warthogs, before leaving an apology message to the rebels, and soon arrive at a deserted Fueling Station, where Caboose wanders towards voices in the distance.
The others catch up with him and discover four steel-armored soldiers speaking to Locus regarding their captured friends. After they vanish, the four continue on and eventually arrive at F.A.C. Outpost 37, where Caboose proposes that they 'melt their way' into the facility. Surprisingly, Caboose's plan seems to work and the four manage to make it to the detention area, where they unexpectedly run into their friends. They tell each other the truth behind why the rebels and Feds are fighting each other and come up with a plan to end the war between the two factions. Suddenly, the compound is attacked by Locus and a group of mercenaries, who force the Reds and Blues to stand down.
Battling the Space PiratesEdit
As Locus prepares to kill them, Felix arrives and betrays the group, revealing that he and Locus used them as a means to cause further conflict in the Chorus Civil War. Fortunately, Carolina emerges from hiding, disguised as a mercenary, and uses a Teleportation Cube to escape with the group. Arriving at a secret Forest Base, Carolina, along with Epsilon, explains that their ship was purposely crashed on Chorus by the Space Pirates, who are mass-producing advanced versions of the ship's Freelancer equipment. As the group analyzes Grif's Suppressor, Wash hands Caboose Freckles' storage unit. Fortunately, Caboose becomes overjoyed at Freckles' new state and thanks Wash.
After the group find a connection between the teleportation grenades and the Suppressor Carolina and the Blues search one-half of the ship at Crash Site Alpha, while the Reds search the ship's manifest at Crash Site Bravo, in order to find out who supplied the grenades. While at the crash site, the Blues and Carolina obtain data from the ship, but are soon attacked by several Space Pirates. As they close in, Tucker frantically removes the drive containing the data, forcing the group to teleport away. When they return to the forest, Caboose is nearly killed by a Space Pirate who teleported back with them, but is rescued by Carolina.
After she and Wash interrogate the mercenary, the group are attacked by more space pirates, forcing Wash to teleport them to the fueling station, where he reveals that Freckles' storage unit contains a tracking device, concerning Caboose. After Epsilon removes the tracker, he and Tucker engage in an argument, forcing Caboose to step in. Caboose advises Tucker to let go of his anger towards Epsilon, as the latter was only doing what he thought was right. Surprised by Caboose's words, Tucker and Epsilon reconcile. Suddenly, Felix and Locus contact the Reds and Blues and offer them a first-class trip off Chorus. Distrustful of the two, the Reds and Blues execute a sneak attack on the mercenaries at Radio Jammer Station 1C.
During the attack, Caboose has Freckles, now implanted inside his Assault Rifle, eliminate a mercenary. After Felix reveals the Pirates' plans to Tucker, Caboose and the other Reds and Blues disable the radio jammer, allowing Epsilon to send Felix's recorded words to the Feds and Rebels at Armonia, who finally learn secret behind the Pirates' involvement in the war. Because of this, Felix and Locus teleport away, vowing that they will return. After the Feds and Rebels form a truce, they pick up the Reds and Blues from the radio jammer station and regroup at the New Republic HQ. After Epsilon processes the manifest, the crew learn the true identity of Control: Chairman Malcom Hargrove. When the Chairman declares war on Chorus, the Reds and Blues, Federal Army, and New Republic, accept.
Going to WarEdit
A month later, Caboose is put on a mission alongside Dr. Grey, Tucker, and Sarge to investigate an alien temple. After Tucker accidentally activates it with his sword, the reaction destroys all of Charon's weaponry. The team relay the event to the others at Armonia and devise a plan to attack the pirates while they're down. Kimball agrees to lead Wash, the Reds, and Chorus armies on an assault on Crash Site Alpha, while Carolina, Grey, and the Blues follow map coordinates the tower emitted. Upon arriving at their destination, Carolina, Grey, and the Blues find an energy portal and learn that only a true warrior of mental clarity and great strength can be accepted through.
After Tucker and Carolina fail to meet these instructions Caboose is sent through the portal and manages to pass the test, befriending an alien A.I. he names Santa in the process. Santa informs them of the Temple of Communication, which will allow them contact with Earth without the disruption of the radio jammers. He also mentions the planet's Purge and the location of a key that can activate it. Just then, the group is ambushed by Sharkface and his band of space pirates, forcing Carolina to protect everyone under her bubble shield. After Sharkface leaves to get the key, Grey has Freckles kill the remaining pirates.
The group then learn that Doyle flew to the east mountains and obtained the key himself, prompting them to go after him. Upom arriving at the mountains, the group encounter Sharkface, who persuades Carolina into chasing him. When Caboose, Tucker, and Grey are attacked by pirates, they take cover inside a cave and unexpectedly find Doc inside. After Caboose explains their relationship with Doc to Grey, the four are spotted by the space pirates. Luckily, Donut and Lopez rescue them and join Caboose and Tucker in finding Doyle. However, after Doyle loses the key to Felix, the team return to Armonia along with the assault team.
After witnessing an argument between Kimball and Doyle, the Reds and Blues ask Doc to help them hold a counseling session for the generals, in order to improve their relationship. Initially, there is little cooperation and mostly arguing, however, Doyle ends up complimenting Kimball and expressing a desire to work together, much to the crew's surprise amd relief. Unfortunately, the session is abruptly cut off when the Space Pirates attack the city.
In order to survive the assault, Epsilon suggests eradicating the pirates by overloading the nuclear reactor in the center of the city, with Wash, Carolina, and Kimball being sent to overload it. Meanwhile, Doyle and the other Reds and Blues head towards the Armory to escape on a Pelican, but quickly discover that Lopez is stuck inside the ship. After Simmons releases him, Doyle decides to remain in Armonia and incites the Pirates into chasing him, allowing the crew to escape on the Pelican. After dropping the Blues off in a safe area, the Reds return to the city and pick up Wash, Kimball, Epsilon, and Carolina.
Doyle, however, ignites the city's reactor in an act of self sacrifice, killing a majority of the space pirates and destroying the city. The crew then regroup at Crash Site Bravo with the armies, who mourn over the loss of Doyle. As the crew formulate a counterattack plan to stop Felix and Locus, Kimball delivers a speech to the Chorus armies that motivates them to fight as one. After the crew attain alien artillery from the Temple of Arms, they assist the Feds and Rebels in attacking the pirates at the Communication Temple. Carolina and Wash, after having destroyed the Purge, soon regroup with them, just as the pirates release several Mantis droids.
While the Freelancers and Chorus armies fight the robots outside, the crew enter the temple's control room and encounter Felix and Locus, where Felix nearly kills Caboose. Luckily, the latter is rescued when Freckles fires confetti and knocks Felix down. Suddenly Locus betrays Felix and assists the crew in killing him. After obtaining his former partner's sword, Locus activates the Temple for the crew and disappears, allowing them to broadcast their message. The message transmits to numerous comm devices across the galaxy, revealing Hargrove's crimes.
Because of this, Hargrove himself flies the Staff of Charon to Chorus and releases numerous Mantis droids around the temple to kill the remaining inhabitants. As a result, the Reds and Blues infiltrate the ship in order to shut down the robots and manage to succeed with F.I.L.S.S.'s help. Unfortunately, they end up trapped inside Hargrove's trophy room when his forces attack them. As Hargrove's forces breach their way into the room, the crew prepare themselves for the impending attack, with Caboose arming himself with Freckles. However, what the crew don't know is that Epsilon deconstructs himself from his memories of the other fragments in order to help them, though the action kills him.
Following the end of the Chorus-Charon War, the Reds and Blues decide to go into exile to live a quiet life on a remote moon, though they fail miserably, resorting to undergo random shenanigans. Ten months later, Caboose encounters IDA reporter Dylan Andrews and her cameraman Jax Jonez, who soon find the rest of the crew. They explain that a group of terrorists are posing as them and that several Freelancers have gone missing since the end of the war on Chorus. Dylan then relays a message of Church, given to her by Kimball, which prompts the crew to spring into action. The Reds and Blues, bar Grif, decide to find the source of the message alongside the reporters while the Freelancers search for their missing comrades.
The crew arrives at an abandoned city where they find another strange relay. While Dylan tries to decipher its source, Caboose and Simmons discuss their views on death, with Caboose believing that Church will return like he always does. After Dylan traces the relay's signal to a planet called Armada 8, the group fly to the location and discover a canyon looking strikingly similar to Blood Gulch. There, Caboose confronts a soldier who looks and sounds exactly like him, until the entire crew meets their "imposters": the Blues and Reds. Their leader, Temple, explains that they were also Simulation Troopers for Project Freelancer and that the UNSC is killing off all Freelancer personnel. Suddenly, UNSC aircraft spot and attack both groups but the sim troopers manage to fight them off. They all then take refuge in an underwater base where the Reds and Blues find Doc working with their counterparts.
The two Red and Blue teams then venture to a supply depot for supplies, where Caboose gets more acquainted with his lookalike Loco. After regrouping with Wash and Carolina, the group returns to base, where Loco continues work on the Blues and Reds' "cloaking device". As Caboose tells him about the Reds and Blues' adventures, leading up to Epsilon's death, Loco reveals that he is building a "special door", though Caboose struggles to understand what he's talking about. Soon after, the Blood Gulch Crew begin to question the whereabouts of the reporters and Freelancers, who have been absent for some time. Upon confronting the Blues and Reds about this, the crew realizes their sinister demeanor and demand for their friends. Unfortunately, Doc and Sarge side with the Blues and Reds, who proceed to capture the remaining crew members, consisting of Caboose, Tucker, Simmons, and Lopez.
However, the four escape and lock themselves in an armament room. They then launch Lopez's head into orbit in order for him to get help before Sarge and Surge capture them.
Caboose seems to act very childish as his understanding of the world and actions are incorrect and shows a great amount of curiosity. However, Caboose does show a lot of care to many characters, even to the Reds, despite them being rivals. He often tries to impress others in order to gain their respect, although it often backfires in some way. Caboose shows a great amount of loyalty as well, as shown when he kept trying to resurrect Church through Epsilon. Because of his mentality, Caboose easily becomes hurt if insulted, such as in Change of Plans, and is easily abused, such as when he was tricked to shake the Alien's "other arm". Overall, Caboose may act like a child, but is very loyal and brave when the situation calls for it. He's also incessantly cheerful; always expressing enthusiasm and adopting an optimistic mentality on missions and in the face of danger. Upon passing through the Construct portal, Santa describes him as never having a negative attitude.
- Main article: Caboose's Relationships
Caboose's relationships with the other characters is unique in that a few episodes depicted the interior of his mind, where the incorrect mental projections of the other characters appeared (with the exceptions of Tex, Lopez, Doc and Sheila).
Lack of IntelligenceEdit
Rooster Teeth notes that originally, there was no plan for Caboose as a character; he started out simply as the Blue rookie counter to Donut. Geoff Ramsey states on the DVD Commentary that Caboose was initially "smarmy" and "a very different character", albeit rather dim-witted. After fans reacted well to his moments of stupidity, however, the crew later orchestrated a long decline in Caboose's intelligence, starting when Sheila is disabled for the first time in Episode 9. His mentality is again dealt a blow after O'Malley is forcibly ejected from his system, and he becomes fairly divorced from reality and prone to frequent non-sequiturs, going as far as to load his rifle with crayons and spelling his own name wrong. This may also be attributed to the fact that Caboose's suit shut down for at least two days, and Caboose remarks "It was dark and I got to hold my breath!" and Church makes a comment about brain damage. Although, shown in season 1 to have the accuracy to get a headshot on a Church-possessed Sarge, he is quoted in saying he has no idea how to use the gun in Episode 82.
He occasionally asks questions about things the others take for granted, such as why a flag is so important, and often fails to grasp even basic concepts, such as the meaning of AI. He also is able to fly into a berserk state by thinking about something that makes him angry, namely "kittens... kittens covered in spikes" and "Milk... no wait, red... RED BULL". He seems to have an extremely low voice and no recollection of what he did during this state. He attributes that to some kind of residual effect of O'Malley possessing him. All in all, Caboose's mentality could be compared to a baby or infant that can talk. While rather dumb, he manages to make a plan to infiltrate Command which succeeds, and shows a good degree of driving skill, escaping an E.M.P by driving off a cliff.
When Washington questions whether he can drive, he states, "Yes, but not an automatic. Only stick." The reason for this is left unexplained. In Relocated, Caboose found the power in the blue base turned on, he believes electricity is "invisible magic". In True Colors, when he is enraged manually by Epsilon, he claims "My name is Michael J. Caboose and I... hate... taxes!" when referring to the army of Texes. Caboose also doesn't seem to know the difference between his face and his helmet; along with that, he is unaware that he has switched helmets, as stated in Barriers to Entry.
There's much speculation about the cause of Caboose's lack of intelligence.
- During Out of Mind: Part III, Delta expresses concern about possible mental damage caused to Tex by the ejection of the Omega AI, and states that damage was caused when Gamma forcibly removed himself from Agent Wyoming. It is possible that similar damage ensued when Tex and Church forced Omega out of Caboose's Mind. This would also make sense because in season 1, he was not as detached from reality as he is now.
- During the Project Freelancer AI experiments, Agent Carolina is known to have been implanted with two A.I. simultaneously. According to Delta, having three minds at once drove Carolina insane. Agent Maine is also known to have suffered mental damage due to his implantation by multiple AI's. During Season 2, when Tex and Church (now known to be AI units themselves) entered Caboose's Mind to destroy Omega, Caboose would have been implanted with three AI units at the same time. It is highly unlikely that Caboose would have escaped this encounter without suffering severe mental damage as well.
- It is possible that the firefight between Church, Tex and Omega inside Caboose's Mind in season 2 may have caused permanent damage to his thought process. Evidence for this includes when his mind's version of Church was shot, causing everything Caboose knew about Church to be forgotten, similarly to deleting a file on a computer. Thus, damaging his mind with weapons could have also led to brain damage.
- During episode 89, it is revealed that the team once deactivated and rebooted Caboose's armor while he was still wearing it, and that it took longer to come back online than expected. Caboose apparently suffered near asphyxiation, claiming that it was dark and that he had to hold his breath.
- In Along Came a Spider, it's revealed that Caboose has been drinking gasoline since the first week he met Church, meaning season one. This would explain why as time went on he continued to get less intelligent.
Regardless of whether or not there is a genuine cause to Caboose's current intellectual state, Rooster Teeth has retroactively written the present "mentally lacking" Caboose into scenes that predate most possible causes of brain damage, implying Caboose was effectively rewritten as always having been this way or as a way for audiences to recognize his voice as it sounded different up until after Church and Tex's firefight with Omega in his head.
Somehow Caboose manages to do serious damage to whatever body Church is possessing. He blew up his original body with a tank (Sheila) in Episode 8 and disabled the lower half of Church's body when he was possessing Lopez. He nearly killed a Church-possessed Sarge in Episode 14 by shooting him in the head with a Sniper Rifle.
His apparent definition of help is "shoot in the back". In Reconstruction: Chapter 6, Church used this to their advantage by getting Caboose to shoot agent South Dakota by telling him that South was a friend and he should help her.Washington says that Command keeps a keyboard shortcut to record Caboose's team killings: "CTRL+F+U". He is also implied to have shot Private Jones in the back after being released from the brig in Rat's Nest; Jones was later found dead.
Caboose's views on team-killing are summed up during a conversation after Washington shoots Agent South; when Washington explains how Agent South "shot (him) in the back first", Caboose tells him that "We believe you...even though we don't think shooting a friend in the back occasionally...is that big of a deal."
Throughout the series, Caboose has shown a love for buttons, proudly pressing the button that taps into the microphone in Tex's robot body and the button that blows up the explosives in Church's robot. Also, in Revelation, Simmons frantically asks Caboose to assist him in fighting Tex by pressing buttons, and this results in a large number of rocket launchers falling down off of a box (Much to Simmons's surprise, as this was immensely helpful). When he press the buttons, he makes his own button pushing noises, like "Beep bop boop boop bop boop". In the What I Did On My Summer Vacation PSA, he states "Man I can't wait to touch all these buttons." In which Jorge states to not touch. However he presses one and ejects Jorge from the Sabre.
Multiple times throughout series, Caboose tries to avoid blame by directing it onto Tucker, ever since he shot and killed Church in Roomier Than it Looks. Even when comatose in Reconstruction: Chapter 12, he manages to groan "Not my fault. ..Tucker did it..." Usually, this is in situations where Caboose's fault is obvious, such as when he melees Epsilon to fix his deactivated short term memory. When Epsilon shouts in pain, Caboose immediately blames Tucker. This trait can also be seen in Reconstruction: Chapter 6, in which Washington witnesses Caboose throw a spike grenade terribly into a wall. Caboose tries to avoid blame by stating that someone placed a wall in front of him.
Because of his lack of intelligence, Caboose is a vulnerable target to enemies. Despite this, attempts to kill him fail, mainly because of his teammates. In Season 5, Gamma kills Caboose. However, he is revived because of Wyoming's Temporal Distortion unit. In Reconstruction, Caboose is left critically injured by the Meta but is reluctantly saved by Washington, Church, and the Reds. In Crash Site Crashers, Zachary Miller attempts to stab Caboose, but the latter is then saved by Carolina. In The End is Near, Felix attempts to kill Caboose using Freckles. He fails due to the confetti function implemented into Freckles.
Skills and AbilitiesEdit
Though unintelligent and unskilled with weaponry, Caboose possesses tremendous physical strength when angry or in simple situations, thought by Church and Tucker to be "God's way of compensating." For instance, Caboose was able to defeat both teams of Grunts and he was the only person at the time that could lift Andy in Season 3. In Recreation, he was able to flip a warthog right-side-up, with Sarge commenting "Wow. You are strong," and in Season 10, when Epsilon manually enrages him, he simply swept aside a large number Tex drones just by charging at them, easily overwhelming them with his raw power. Because of his immense strength, Caboose can be seen as the powerhouse and secret weapon of the Reds and Blues.
In Season 13, after Caboose passes through a portal, Santa increases the gravity of the area tenfold to test Caboose. Instead of being crushed by the overwhelming change in gravity, Caboose doesn't even notice and is able to handle the extreme change in gravity with little to no effort. Assuming that Chorus has relatively the same gravity as Earth, this is an incredible feat (in perspective, if the gravity was increased tenfold on Earth, all life would be destroyed) and showcases how strong Caboose really is.
Despite his lack of intelligence, Caboose has shown a surprising skill in engineering. In Recreation Caboose alone was able to put Epsilon into an alien artifact, and in Revelation, he was shown to successfully use the crane controls in the battle against Epsilon-Tex. In Season 10, he and Simmons were able to install Epsilon into Carolina's mongoose so they could spy on her. In Season 11, Caboose was successfully able to repair his pet war robot, Freckles, and the latter referred to Caboose as his "master". This counter-intuitive skill is likely due to Caboose being a kinesthetic learner, being better at learning tasks that are entirely hands-on, and requiring more practical knowledge than anything else. Also, it may be due to Caboose having a form of savant syndrome, which in this case would be where he has skills in engineering and athletics, but very low levels of independent living skills and other forms of intelligence.
KillsEditDespite not having many skills, Caboose has killed several characters, although some were the cause of friendly fire. Command also believes that South Dakota was killed by Caboose, but it was in fact Washington who lied to them in Reconstruction: Chapter 7. He also managed to kill some Space Pirates during the Chorus conflict, largely due to Freckles' aimbot technology that now augments his assault rifle. In Season 15, Caboose takes numerous Zealots, much like in Season 3.
Caboose has been well-received by the community and has become one of the most popular characters in the series. In 2005, Caboose was selected as the Best Male Performance in the 3rd Annual Rockets on Prisoner Awards, which are intended to recognize exemplary work in Halo machinima. In his acceptance speech, Joel Heyman, his voice actor, acted in-character to honor Caboose. It has even been stated in the series that Caboose is considered the overall fan favorite and he's possibly the most known on several occasions, such as in the PSA Halo-Ween, as the Reds dressed up as him on Halloween. When asked how Caboose's character was developed, Joel Heyman stated that Caboose is the only character who knows he's in a video game.
- Caboose's name is a reference to actor Michael J. Fox. It may also be a reference to Burnie Burns' given name, "Michael J. Burns".
- Some significance can be gleaned from Caboose's name.
- First off, Caboose's last name is very appropriate since the caboose is always the last car on a train. Likewise, Caboose's train of thought is considerably slower than that of his friends, and his mind will always come in dead last.
- While this is grasping a bit at straws, his first name - Michael - can be seen as a reference to the Archangel Michael in Roman Catholicism, who is seen as the most powerful of God's Archangels and the patron saint of the military. Not coincidentally, Caboose has been revealed to be the most dangerous and strongest member of the Blood Gulch Crew aside from Washington and Carolina when sufficiently angered. Also, the Archangel Michael is often associated with fire, which is another notable connection between the two, since Caboose can be as destructive as a forest fire at times.
- Caboose's middle initial "J" stands for Jesus, though it is the Spanish pronunciation.
- Behind the scenes, the origin for Caboose's name (along with Donut's) is that of the randomly generated names assigned to temporary multiplayer profiles in Halo: Combat Evolved.
- Caboose has nine toes, as his left "pinky toe" fell off after Church shot him in the foot as an excuse to get Doc over to him.
- Caboose is one of the few characters to have his name included in the title of an episode. In Caboose's case, it is Caboose's Guide to Making Friends.
- Caboose is color blind, as stated in Grif Does a Rescue.
- Caboose apparently does not know how to spell his own name as he is shown on a few occasions to misspell it as "CABOSE". His name is spelled like this in Visiting Old Friends, Oh Captains, My Captains, and Caboose's Guide to Making Friends.
- Caboose is very bad at eulogies. He seems to have no idea what they are as he started Church and Tex's with: "Dearly beloved. We are gathered here today to witness the joining together of Tex, and Church, in eternalness together, smuh- speak now, or forever rest in peace! With liberty… and justice… for all. The end!" His second one in Revelation, while almost salvaging Epsilon's "Parable" quickly deteriorates into another bunch of ceremonial cliches: "let there be cake, hallelujah, gesundheit!"
- Caboose used crayons for ammunition in Season 4, although he did not fire a single shot through the whole season.
- It seems Caboose's claims of being a 'vehicle destroyer' are actually true, as seen in his initial appearance in Reconstruction where he had destroyed every single one of the Rat's Nest Blue Team's vehicles on his own, and he is mentioned as having been forbidden from operating heavy machinery for the New Republic.
- According to Tucker in Repent, the End Is Near, Caboose separates everything into two categories: He doesn't understand, or he doesn't care.
- Caboose has only participated in the characters' "SON OF A BITCH!" moments twice. Once after being crushed by the falling debris of Donut's Ghost at the end of the "fight fight!" one of many alternate endings of episode 100 and once before being taken over by O'Malley (The Bitch part of that is spoken by O'Malley).
- In the Halo 3 engine, Caboose is seen wearing the MJOLNIR Mark V helmet, rather than the Mark VI helmet (With the exception of any appearances made prior to Reconstruction, where he is shown wearing the default Mark VI helmet). When this is pointed out to him, he claims that he was "upgrading", and that "In a top ten list, five is better than six!" In reality it's because Caboose and Church would have looked too similar due to their armor coloring, as well as the Mark V's simplistic helmet design, better suiting Caboose's personality. Caboose's helmet choice has proven to be useful, as it made Caboose immune to the effects of the "Armor Lock" safety protocol while the other characters in the Freelancer facility were affected during Revelation. Caboose's Epsilon-double also wears a Mark V helmet in Halo: Reach. With the change to Halo 4 however, which initially did not feature the Mark V helmet at the time of Season 11's release, Caboose returned to wearing the Mark VI helmet. When the helmet was later made available through DLC, Caboose once again regained it during the episode Neighborhood Watch.
- Caboose is typically shown carrying an Assault Rifle, the iconic weapon of Halo: Combat Evolved, as opposed to the other characters who carry Battle Rifles, the iconic weapon of Halo 2.
- Recovery Command has a shortcut on their keyboard for the sole purpose of recording Caboose's team kills: Ctrl + F + U.
- When Washington scans Caboose with a "BioCom" in Reconstruction: Chapter 10, Caboose's Brain Activity is listed as "UNK" (unknown), a reference to his limited intelligence.
- Revealed in Reconstruction: Chapter 18, Caboose can only operate a manual gear system on vehicles, not automatic. The reason for this remains unknown.
- Between Relocated and Recreation, it's been noted in the Valentine PSA that Church would rip out Caboose's heart and Doc would have to sew it back in.
- Caboose has the most appearances in the second saga of the series out of all characters (58 episodes).
- Caboose has the second highest A.I. count in the series, being beaten only by the Meta, who has had ten. Caboose has had six A.I. (Alpha, Beta, Omega, Delta, Epsilon, and Santa).
- Caboose is the last of the eight main characters to appear animated in Poser. It was stated in the Rooster Teeth Panel at Comic Con 2010 that they had no plans to animate Caboose in Poser as of now (which led to a disappointing outcry from the audience). Though he was planned to be animated in Poser, and by the behind the scenes special feature on the DVD, Monty Oum made a model for Caboose. He was finally shown animated in Poser in the Season 10 episode "True Colors", fighting alongside the other Reds and Blues against an army of Tex drones.
- After Omega left Caboose the first time, Caboose gained the ability to unlock berserk rage within himself saying "O'Malley taught me to be mean" during this enraged state Caboose talks in Omega's deep voice and is capable of incredible destruction. This, however, has only been shown twice in the series, likely due to, as per his claim, forgetting to do so.
- As said above, Caboose has used that ability only twice, but he may have used it off screen. This is hinted in Reconstruction: Chapter 5 when Washington, Caboose, and Church find Sheila. Caboose gets angry when Wash keeps calling Sheila a program prompting Caboose to say, "Do not speak to her like that, she is not a program!" Church chose to hide behind Caboose, hinting that he fears his O'Mally state.
- In Halo 4 - Spartan Ops mode, in the last mission of Episode Departure, The Core, if the player unlocks an RvB Easter Egg, Caboose will be heard slip in the radio transmissions between the SPARTANS Sarah Palmer, Robert Dalton, and the Majestic Squad.
- Caboose, along with Sarge and Grif, is the one of the only characters in the series to appear in every season of Red vs. Blue.
- Geoff Ramsey made a reference to Caboose and his team kills in Fails of the Weak: 126; "It's like that guy is playing on a team of multiple Cabooses."
- Caboose's promotion to Captain in Season 12 now makes him among the highest ranking soldiers encountered in the series, along with fellow captains Flowers, Grif, Simmons, and Tucker.
- Caboose once had a guinea pig named Mr. Frittles, but he unfortunately crushed him to death after "showing him his affection." This is similar to how Lenny from the classic American novel, "Of Mice and Men," accidentally kills a rabbit. Coincidentally, Caboose and Lenny are both fans of small animals, mentally challenged, and freakishly strong.
- According to the Red vs. Blue: The Ultimate Fan Guide Caboose was stationed on a station near the moon where he was supposed to fill the suits of the astronauts who went outside with oxygen, but was transferred to Project Freelancer due to not understanding how breathing works in space.
- Caboose can apparently understand the font Wing-Dings as mentioned in the episode Tourist Trap.
- In the 64th episode of Screw Attack's hit series Death Battle Caboose is shown to know about the show, and seems to know Wiz and Boomstick as well.
- Caboose states that he got a "purple heart" after being shot, during The Nesting Theory and hopes to one day make a full purple person to be his best friend. This is a reference to the Purple Heart medal, a United States military decoration awarded to those wounded or killed while serving with the U.S. military.
- Although Caboose was introduced in episode 3 of Season 1, his name wasn't stated until episode 9, when Tucker tells Caboose to get out of the tank just before Sheila is destroyed in an air strike.
- Prior to the series, Caboose was born and raised in a colony on the moon with 17 sisters. He joined the army after mistaking a recruiting center for college.
- He apparently had to have an illustrated field manual, and apparently at first thought that he had to hold a grenade over his head while it fired arrows at enemies, due to the diagram being unspecific.
- In Why They're Here, it is revealed Caboose wasn't supposed end up in Blood Gulch and was only there because Flower's corrupted Vic's list.
- Caboose shares many similarities to Agent Iowa.
- Both wear blue armor.
- Both have relatively low intelligence.
- Both lost oxygen while in their suits, which likely caused brain damage and probably the cause of low intelligence.
- Both inadvertently destroy vehicles.
- Iowa's real first name is Mike, a short form of Caboose's first name, Michael.
|Blue Team |
| Blood Gulch: Leonard L. Church · Epsilon · Lavernius Tucker (ε) · Michael J. Caboose (ε) · Tex (ε)|
Washington · Sheila · Butch Flowers · Andrew D. Kaboom (ε) · Junior · Kaikaina Grif · Freckles
|Desert Gulch: Mark Temple · Buckey · Loco|
|Coloblind: Wynn · Squatch · Deuce|
|Other: Jimmy · Jacob J. Jenkins · Mickey · Miller · Jones · Blue Grunt Leader · Phil (Falcon)|
|Vehicles: M808V Main Battle Tank · Chopper|
|Most Known: Vanessa Kimball · Felix · Lavernius Tucker · Dick Simmons · Dexter Grif · Michael J. Caboose · Charles Palomo · Katie Jensen · Antoine Bitters · John Elizabeth Andersmith|
|Other Members: Simmons' Lieutenant · Jason Cunningham · Rogers · Matthews · Medic · |
Ghanoush · McCallister