SPOILERS. Sir John speaks in abstractions almost all the time—he talks about how his son must face his inner darkness and embrace the beast, how he will “take the fall” for his own deeds, and how Gwen has lit a fire in him. He sought to know the secrets of life in a mountain cave, and got surprised by a werewolf “cub” that bit him and changed his life forever, but in the process, helped him find his true inner self. His methods are rational, just not particularly moral as the villain. Sir John decided to let out his wolf side in order to kill his son, and prevent him from marrying Gwen and taking him away from the house. He then needed someone to blame, and because he despises his second son’s emotional weakness, allowed him to take the fall, framing him as insane and sending him off to a mental institution to wreak havoc. He did grapple mightily with his wife’s death and his ensuing guilt, but also chose to cover up his crime and convince his son it was suicide. Sir John values Gwen a great deal and wants to make her a part of his life, but he does so through intimidation rather than kindness. He seems to be quite capable of taking advantage of opportunities as they arise, though he does so in mostly a hands-off manner (framing his son and standing aside to let the townspeople take him, once they suspect him of murder). He also seems to find some “relief” in becoming a wolf, as if it is cathartic to connect to his animalistic inner nature.

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Sir John is highly aware of power dynamics and how to use them, often asserting himself over his children and having an intense personal distaste for their weaknesses — he points out that Lawrence was weak and emotional as a child, with the implication that he held him in contempt for it. Though he felt great remorse for his actions against his wife, he has taken to using his secret transformation for personal gain — targeting and killing his son, to keep the woman he loves present in the house. He has a calm, rational nature that allows himself to be untouched by the terrible things he must do.