Jonathan made his debut as one of the two protagonists in the 2006 Nintendo DS game Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin, tagging along witch partner and childhood friend Charlotte Aulin. He later appeared in the multiplayer crossover games Castlevania: Harmony of Despair and Castlevania: Grimoire of Souls.
Jonathan Morris is a descendant of the Belmont clan of vampire hunters. Like his father, John Morris, Jonathan eventually wields the legendary Vampire Killer whip to stave off the minions of evil, although he does not start off with the whip's full power due to his not being of the main Belmont lineage. While Jonathan starts out using the legendary weapon as a normal whip, he will also be able to equip other kinds of weapons, including swords, axes, and great swords.
As a child, Jonathan was raised alongside the Fernandez/Belnades descendant Charlotte Aulin. The two shared a strong, supposedly platonic friendship. In 1944, Morris and Aulin worked together to foil the destruction of mankind by the vampire artist Brauner and his twin vampire daughters, Stella and Loretta.
Jonathan shows animosity toward his father for not teaching him how to unlock the full potential of the Vampire Killer. However, as the game progresses and he meets Wind, Jonathan begins to fully appreciate and respect his father.
It is possible that Jonathan would be the one to pass the whip onto Julius Belmont and maybe play a part in the Demon Castle War (he would be 73). He or his son/daughter would have given the Vampire Killer to Julius Belmont in order to defeat Dracula.
Jonathan, or rather, a memory of him from the Grimoire of Souls, was stored inside a Grimoire modeled after 1944 Transylvania. While fighting the Dullahan, the Grimoire version of Jonathan ended up nearly killed due to the Grimoire being remotely rewritten by another party which caused the Dullahan to become exponentially stronger, which also affected his partner Charlotte thanks largely to her ties to that era. A group composed of Genya Arikado (using his true identity of Alucard within the Grimoire), as well as simulacrum versions of Simon Belmont, Charlotte, a younger version of Maria Renard and Shanoa later rescued him before he could be killed and proceeded to vanquish the Dullahan and seal away its Vital Soul. He later joined the group, and also took the opportunity to vent to Simon his frustrations regarding the harsh life he and his father had to endure due to the Belmonts' disappearance, while acknowledging that Simon was in no way responsible for any of the difficulties. Jonathan also wished to train alongside Maria to not get idle, although Simon, overhearing this, enthusiastically agreed and had him be his training partner, much to Jonathan's horror (as Simon frequently underwent a very excessive training regiment, especially by the standards of the 1940s).
Jonathan is able to use the Vampire Killer whip, although it starts out very weak for him in the game. To compensate for this, he is able to use many other types of weapons, including swords, axes and other whips. Contrary to his partner, Charlotte Aulin, he is able to equip a large variety of sub-weapons and martial arts techniques as skills, and use each one as he gets them without the need to wait for channels, although most of them start off as weak version of themselves and only evolve to a special version when Jonathan grinds enough Skill Points, which make them have new animations and effects. Some of the martial arts techniques do not need to be equipped and can be performed using special button combinations. Out of the duo, he is the most mobile, being able to perform a jump kick after a double jump or perform a high jump.
After acquiring a certain relic, Jonathan is able to use Critical Arts which improve his raw power further and allow him to deal increased damage with his main weapon; in addition, some weapons also have special features when this movement is used. Jonathan can either switch places with Charlotte or fight alongside her.
Stat-wise, as a fighter, his STR is the highest, making it so also his ATK greatly improves when he gets weapons later on, with his CON also standing on an equal level. His INT is the lowest, making it so that his sub-weapons deal low damage early on and his low Mind makes him suffer greatly from magical damage. His LCK is also the lowest of the duo and his MP regeneration rate is halved.
- Main article: Jonathan Morris/Harmony of Despair
Though Jonathan returns in Harmony of Despair, he is only able to use the Vampire Killer, and not all of the Sub-Weapons he possessed in Portrait of Ruin make an appearance as well. Despite this, however, he still has more sub-weapons than the other whippers, and his Martial Arts are readily available after finding them. His sub-weapons level up in power the more he uses them, much like in Portrait of Ruin. In addition, whenever a sub-weapon levels up for Jonathan, if it is a sub-weapon that the other whipper characters can readily use, the Vampire Killer also grows in power.
- (With one voice with Charlotte) Vincent, you're scaring me.
- She's like my Kid Sister.
- Nah, I'm still around.
- (After defeating Death the first time) I may not have the whip's power, but I can still kick your ***!
- (If getting tempted by Astarte) Command me...
- Jonathan, much like his father, is depicted as being left handed in most of his pieces of official artwork. However, because of the nature of 2D sprites, his dominant hand will switch to match the side he is currently facing.
- This being said, there are occasional pieces of artwork that depict him as right handed. One can see this in the cinematic featured after a period of inactivity in Portrait of Ruin's main menu as well.
- Jonathan could have been named after Jonathan Harker from the Dracula novel.
- His name may even throw back to Jonathan Joestar from JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, who also fought the undead and their vampire master, Dio. This is further referenced when the player keeps holding ↑ on the D-pad; after a while, Jonathan will strike a pose very similar to those from JoJo's Bizarre Adventure. Moreover, only he can wear Stone Mask, which is a reference to the same anime.
- His name can also be a reference to his father's, John Morris.
- Jonathan is the only playable character who is able to use Jump Kick in Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin.
- Even if Jonathan can also use two-handed weapons like Soma in Dawn of Sorrow, he wields them with one hand.
- Nintendo Power, issue #204 (June, 2006).
- Konami E3 special site - Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin