Note: Not to be confused with The Milkman.
Boyd Cooper is a conspiracy theorist, a former security guard, and a former resident of the Asylum.
- 1 Appearance
- 2 Personality
- 3 History
- 4 Psychonauts
- 5 Psychonauts 2
- 6 The Milkman
- 7 Boyd's Mind
- 8 Relationships
- 9 Quotes
- 10 Trivia
- 11 Gallery
- 12 Videos
- 13 References/Notes
Boyd is an old, overweight man dressed in a security guard uniform. His uniform consists of a dark blue jacket with copper buttons and striped white shirt underneath. He wears a copper sheriff star on the left side of his chest, a black tie, shiny black shoes, and a dark blue hat with a copper shield sown on the crown. He has yellow skin, four fingers on each hand, a dark green five o'clock shadow, black eyes, and blue hair. His nose and eye bags are an orange color. His left eye is positioned higher on his face than his right eye.
–Character blurb from the original Psychonauts website
Boyd is paranoid about being watched. He is obsessed with conspiracy theories.
Boyd was once a security guard at a department store called "Hernando's". After being fired by his boss, he returned to the store at night and burned it down, using Molotov cocktails fashioned from empty milk bottles. He was committed to Thorney Towers Home for the Disturbed after this incident.
At some point before the start of Psychonauts, he was hypnotized by Coach Oleander, who implanted subconscious orders into Boyd's mind to guard the Asylum from prying eyes, and if necessary, burn the place down to hide any evidence of his plans.
The Li-Po backstory document offers extra backstory information on some characters in Psychonauts. It has not been stated canon by DoubleFine Productions.
|Boyd spent most of his early years as an only child. At first, he received the full attention of his kind and loving parents. His father delivered milk and so his work was done by noon, and was home very early to spend time with his only son. Boyd’s mother stayed at home full time to raise Boyd. Her only work was with volunteer organizations, including acting as a den mother for a local scout troop. Through her scouting work, however, she met another man. He was a widow, and a single father of 14 children. Eventually, the two began an illicit affair that when found out, became the most talked about scandal anyone could remember in their small, suburban community.
Boyd’s mom left his dad, took custody of Boyd, and moved in with the blue-collar widower and his huge family. Boyd was suddenly not an only child. He wasn’t the oldest child; he wasn’t the youngest; he wasn’t even very close to either end. His age put him right in the middle of all the kids, where he spent the rest of his adolescence alone in the crowd, anonymous in his own house.
Boyd became more and more introverted. He resented his mother for dumping him in this new home, and he began to develop paranoid fantasies about the widower’s other kids conspiring against him, the new comer. The sad truth was, none of the other kids really noticed him at all. Still, his fantasies escalated until he managed to surround himself by an imaginary web of self-centered conspiracy theories. They stretched out beyond his family to include city hall, the federal government, multi-national corporations, some foreign governments and interests, and above all, the dairy industry.
This lead to troubles at school, and in his junior year, Boyd dropped out of high school and got a job as a security guard in a busy department store. For a while he was fine. He kept to himself. But eventually his paranoia became a problem. He started detaining random shoppers on a regular basis for interrogation. No matter what they said, Boyd would eventually accuse them of spying on him for some agency or secret group. After numerous complains and threats of lawsuits, the store’s manager had no choice but to fire him. Boyd, of course, took this as validation of all his theories. It was evidence of a secret plot against him, and much to his co-workers horror, he showed up at the store the next day with a Molotov cocktail in his hand. He declared his intent to burn the store down and “stick a burning stake in the eye of the Cyclops that has a million eyes.” This was the first time many of his co-workers were aware he even existed.
Before he could burn anything besides his fingers, he was overpowered and wrestled to the ground by a mob of perfume-counter ladies. The police showed up and hauled him off to jail. Due to his vehement distrust of lawyers, he made the unfortunate choice of representing himself in court. After a 4-hour closing argument, in which he spelled out for the jury, the judge, and ever person in the courtroom what part they played in his personal persecution, he had so annoyed the judge that he was handed a life sentence, to be served out at Thorney Towers Mental Sanctuary.
When the institution ran out of money and closed a few years later, nobody came to pick up Boyd. He shunned any help from the social workers assigned to place him and chose instead to hide out in the foliage surrounding the asylum. He hid for weeks from the asylum workers, who, in fact, had looked for him for about 20 minutes, and then left.
Eventually, Coach Oleander, while setting up shop in the abandoned asylum’s towers, found Boyd and brought him back inside. Because of Boyd’s ductile mind, and security guard experience, the coach picked him to be his own one-man security force and back up failsafe plan. Using MK-ULTRA, Manchurian Candidate-style hypnotic suggestions, the coach planted two sets of instructions into Boyd’s mind—one in the foreground, and one deep in his subconscious.
These instructions were buried in the form of an alternate identity for Boyd: The Milkman. The Milkman’s purpose and location are a secret to Boyd. The Milkman sleeps inside Boyd’s mind, waiting for the day when he is awakened to fulfill his purpose.For now, Boyd guards the asylum, happy to have a job again. He knows that someday the Milkman will come and change things. Until then, he waits.
Raz first encounters Boyd scribbling on the walls at the Asylum Gates. When Raz approaches, Boyd gasps and asks who Raz is working for, and responds with confusion when Raz states he's with the Psychonauts, saying it "Doesn't fit in at all". Boyd then refuses to answer Raz's question of who he himself works for, stating he is the guard of the Asylum and that he's been "fully trained." Boyd ignores Raz's pleas to open the gates, claiming that "the Milkman has the key", and theorizes the Milkman is "sleeping on the job" when Raz asks where he is located. Unable to obtain any straight answers, Raz decides to use his Psycho-Portal and obtain the information directly from his mind.
Within the Milkman Conspiracy (Boyd's mind), the Milkman is reportedly dead, but Boyd and the G-Men do not believe this and aggressively search for him. The Rainbow Squirts work against the G-men to obfuscate the Milkman's location and true purpose. In actuality, the Milkman is a personality implanted into Boyd's mind by Coach Oleander, meant to be activated when Oleander needs all evidence of what happened at the asylum destroyed. When Raz finds the body of the Milkman and defeats the Den Mother, the Milkman awakens, taking control of Boyd in the real world. Boyd then states it is "time for the final delivery to this address" and opens the gates, positioning himself outside the Asylum's front door with a Molotov cocktail milk bottle in hand for the rest of the game. After Fred asks if Boyd is ready to "blow this popsicle stand", Boyd throws the Molotov cocktail through a window, lighting the asylum on fire. Figments representing the Milkmen, the Den Mother, the Rainbow Squirts and the G-men then leave his body in a beam of light, presumably representing the subconscious orders Coach Oleander implanted in Boyd's mind being deactivated. Boyd finally states: "The Milkman has completed his route". He then turns to Fred, Gloria, and Edgar, enthusiastically asking if they want to split a cab.
The Milkman appears briefly in the Psychonauts recap animation in Psychonauts 2.
Main article: The Milkman
The Milkman, Boyd Cooper's alter ego, is a separate personality implanted in Boyd's mind by Coach Oleander before the events of Psychonauts.
When awoken at the end of the level, he rises in a beam of light and milk bottles from the vault he was contained in, then exits the Den Mother's house and throws moltov cocktail milk bottles at the approaching Censors and G-men, forcing Raz out of Boyd's mind during the resulting chaos. If Raz returns to Boyd's mind after the Milkman Conspiracy is completed, the Milkman will remain present at this location, throwing moltovs at approaching censors. If questioned by Raz about why he is trying to burn down the asylum, he will state that his employer has commissioned him to "whitewash what went on here" and that he cannot rest until he has made his "final delivery".
Main Article: Milkman Conspiracy
Boyd is friends with Edgar. They escape with the remaining inmates from Thorney Towers before it's destroyed. The full extend of their relationship is up to speculation.
Cispin is Boyd's fellow asylum inmate. They do not interact directly within the game, therefore their true relationship is up to speculation.
Gloria Von Gouton
Boyd is friends with Gloria. They escape with the remaining inmates from Thorney Towers before it's destroyed. They do not interact directly within the game, therefore their true relationship is up to speculation.
Boyd is Coach Oleander's former minion. His purpose was to destroy Thorney Towers in case the Coach's plans for world domination were disrupted. Interestingly, Boyd references a "fat kid with a bunny" in one of his random dialogue sentences, hinting he somehow knew or interacted with Oleander in his youth.
Boyd sees Raz as an ally to his cause of trying to find the Milkman. If Clairvoyance is used on Boyd, Raz will appear as a bottle of milk.
Boyd is friends with Fred. They escape with the remaining inmates from Thorney Towers before it's destroyed. They do not interact directly within the game, therefore their true relationship is up to speculation.
Boyd is aware The Milkman exists and wants to desperately discover his true location inside his mind. However, his relationship with his alter ego is unclear.
Boyd is incredibly wary of the G-men. They represent his fear of the government and obsession with conspiracy theories.
|Outside the Asylum Gates|
|Quotes while outside of the asylum.
|Inside Boyd's Mind|
|Quotes while inside Boyd's mind.
- The character of Boyd Cooper was inspired in-part by a man who swept up the alley by the Double Fine Productions building. Several of Boyd's lines were inspired by his ramblings.
- It is implied Boyd may have a smoking habit, as several ash trays are seen lying around in his house.
- A glitch can occur on the PC version of Psychonauts by using Pyrokinesis on Boyd in the Real world will cause the flames to never extinguish, and he will continue to burn, while walking and speaking normally.
- After exiting his house, Boyd can be seen peeking out through his window, most likely watching out for G-Men.
- Inside his mind, if Pyrokinesis is used on Boyd and you choose to talk to him, he will stop jumping around and instead stand still to talk.
- Boyd's ramblings are the result of a program that randomly assembles phrases, as a result he is very unlikely to say the same thing twice in a row.
- Boyd's voice actor, Alan Blumenfeld, also voices Glottis in Grim Fandango, another game by Tim Schafer.
- Using Clairvoyance on Boyd as the Milkman shows Raz as a milk bottle with a head.
- While rambling, Boyd may occasionally reference "the little fat kid with the bunny", foreshadowing the final level, Meat Circus. His ramblings also refer to Sheegor and Mr. Pokeylope.
- Unlike Fred, Gloria and Edgar, Raz exploring Cooper's mind does not help with his insanity/paranoia in any way; it simply triggers his alter ego, The Milkman.
- When Boyd is hit with a Confusion Grenade (obtained by cheating) before the Milkman Conspiracy is completed, he temporarily comes to his senses and says this quote:
- "Wait a minute, I think there may not be a conspiracy after all. It's possible that I am suffering from paranoid delusions, linked to an entity I call 'The Milkman' who is in actuality... (confusion wears off) The mummified remains of Abraham Lincoln!"
- Boyd's background of being hypnotically programmed to carry out a specific task shares similarities to the plot of Richard Codon's novel The Manchurian Candidate.
- According to one of his random lines, his first cat was named Seymour.
- In the Li-Po backstory document, the Den Mother is implied to a representation of Boyd's real mother.
- Boyd's alternate artificial personality was inspired by the hypnosis experiments from project MK Ultra.
Concept Art and Promotional Materials
Textures and Model Screenshots
- Thorney Towers closed 55 years before the start of Psychonauts (according to a tree stump in Whispering Rock), even though Boyd was still a patient living in the asylum at the time of closing. Assuming he was at least 18 at the time of admission, this would make him at least 73 years old in Psychonauts.
- Boyd is able to teach this ability while his mind.
- Possibly. They are referenced in the Li-Po Backstory Document.