Detective Mark Hoffman is a fictional character in the Saw franchise. Mark was a 43-year old long-serving police officer for the Metropolitian Police Department, as well as the first accomplice, and subsequently the successor of the Jigsaw Killer, John Kramer. Like his mentor and partner, he designed death traps that, for survivors, give them reason to appreciate their lives. There are a few major differences however. Unlike Amanda Young, most of his traps gave the victims the chance to escape, however, he had no emotion towards his subjects, and in general, brandishes a very monotone personality.
Hoffman is a corrupt detective who is hidden from his dirty work and blames Agent Strahm until Saw VI where an audio tape from one of the victim's instructions reveals he was the one who recorded it. He immediately kills Erickson and profoundly stabs Agent Perez until she dies. Since his encounter with John Kramer, Hoffman has helped Kramer with all his murders. This is revealed in Saw VI and Saw 3D.
Much of Mark's backstory is presented in Saw V. It was revealed in the film that Mark was a police officer for twenty years.
Seth Baxter, the man who murdered his sister, spent five years in prison before being released on a technicality. Furious, Mark placed Seth in an inescapable trap that mirrored the M.O. of the Jigsaw Killer, and watched as he was cut in half by a large pendulum.
After arriving at his apartment, he unknowingly encountered John Kramer (the Jigsaw Killer) in an elevator. Noticing that only one button (the button he pressed upon entering) was lit, Mark was suddenly attacked from behind and rendered unconscious. He woke up in John's lair and was strapped to a chair with a modified double-barreled shotgun aimed at his head; John warned him that if he attempted to escape, he would trigger it and kill himself. John then explained that he had evidence that proved Mark committed Seth's murder, and proceeded to test Mark's will to survive by pulling the unloaded barrel's trigger. He then released Mark and offered him an ultimatum; he could kill John and have all the evidence released, thus destroying him and his career, or "redeem" himself by learning how John's "rehabilitation" method's truly worked. As Mark contemplated his options, John showed him he could have killed him by firing the loaded barrel, and questioned what his sister would think. Mark then accepted his offer.
Becoming an Apprentice Edit
Mark was first tasked with abducting Paul Leahy and placing him in a razor-wire maze trap. While observing the trap, Mark informed John that the police were getting closer to discovering his identity, and John instructed Mark to plant evidence that lead them to Dr. Lawrence Gordon. He later assisted John in setting up Eric Matthews test by placing several victims in The Nerve Gas House; during which John gave Mark advice on how to predict people's actions regarding chance.
Mark was one of the first to arrive at the scene of Troy's game. Detective Allison Kerry suggested that Jigsaw had an accomplice due to the fact that the door to the room was welded shut, making it impossible for Troy to escape. While Lieutenant Daniel Rigg and Allison Kerry argued, Mark pocketed some of the evidence. Mark then placed Allison in a trap (designed and rigged by Amanda) which killed her even though she did as she was instructed to.
Amanda's Test Edit
While setting up John's final test, Mark and Amanda began fighting over John's affections and legacy. Mark tried to win John's favor by warning him against Amanda's now murderous take on his legacy. Mark, knowing the test was actually meant for Amanda, proceeded to sabotage the test, and switched John's letter for Amanda with one of his own: a letter informing Amanda that if she did not kill Lynn Denlon, he would tell John about her role in his ex-wife's miscarriage. Amanda killed Lynn, but was then killed by Lynn's husband, Jeff, who then proceeded to kill John as well.
Daniel Rigg's Test Edit
Meanwhile, Mark, Rigg, and the SWAT team arrived at an unidentified location where they came across Kerry's rotting corpse. FBI Agents Peter Strahm and Lindsey Perez arrived at the scene shortly after and Peter theorized that Jigsaw must have a second accomplice as John and Amanda were both physically incapable of placing her in the trap.
During one of his visits at the precinct, Lindsey spotted Mark holding Corbett's stuffed toy while leaving his office, and when confronted about it, he implied that it was for his own child.
Mark then went to the Gideon Meat Packing plant, where he appeared to be a victim placed in a trap at the end of a series of tests made for Rigg. He was strapped to a chair with electrodes, on one end of a large scale, with Eric Matthews at the other end; Matthews was standing on top of a melting ice block with a chain-noose around his neck. If Eric was not on the ice block, the scale would tip and send the runoff water towards Mark, seemingly electrocuting him. Another victim, Art Blank was forced to oversee their game, and would be able to free all of them once the ninety minutes Daniel had been given were up. After Rigg failed his test, Mark released himself, and left Daniel to bleed to death. He then proceeded to lock Peter Strahm inside of a make-shift operating room.
Peter Strahm's Test Edit
When Strahm escaped the operating room, Hoffman placed him in a trap intended to kill him, and left the plant with Corbett Denlon, the daughter of Jeff and Lynn Denlon. He claimed they were the only two survivors, until he saw that Agent Strahm was still alive, having escaped the trap. Afterwards, Hoffman was called to the mourge were an autopsy was being performed on John; a wax coated tape found in his stomach revealed that Mark would not go untested.
Strahm soon became suspicious of Hoffman, as Perez's last words before she died were his name, and questioned how he escaped the plant unharmed. Realizing that Strahm is closing in on him, Hoffman set up a test which he predicted Peter would fail. He proceeded to take Strahm's phone and planted it at the location of the current game. It is here that he planned for FBI Agent Dan Erickson, who was in charge of the Jigsaw case, to find the phone, thus framing Strahm as Jigsaw's second accomplice. He was assisted by John's ex wife, Jill Tuck, who went to the FBI precinct and fueled Dan's suspicion of Peter by telling him that he was stalking her. Meanwhile, Peter followed Mark home, and found a trap door leading to an underground network of tunnels. He eventually found a room containing a large transparent box filled with broken glass. Peter also found a tape, instructing him to enter the box. He decided to ignore the warning, and stopped the tape as he heard Mark approaching. When Mark walked into the room, Peter attacked him from behind.
The two engaged in a fight that ended with Peter pushing Mark into the box. When Peter sealed the box, the door to the room automatically closed itself, and Peter furiously demanded to know how to open it. Mark pointed down at the tape, and Peter played the rest of it, which stated that if he didn't enter the box he would simply "vanish", and Hoffman's legacy would become his. The glass box slowly began to lower into the ground, as the room's walls began to close. Peter tried to shoot Mark but the glass was impenetrable, and he was violently crushed to death as Mark watched.
Following Strahm's death, Mark used his severed hand to plant fingerprints at the site of another game. He later arrived at the scene after being called by Erickson, who told him that Peter's fingerprints were found around the room, and then revealed that Agent Lindsey Perez, who was believed to have been dead, was in fact still alive and back on the case. Mark reluctantly agreed to work with them, when Erickson agreed to keep him in the loop. He was later called to the morgue by Erickson and Perez. The coroner informed them that the knife used to cut a Jigsaw-shaped puzzle piece of flesh from one of the victims, was different than the one used by John Kramer, and used only in one other instance, the murder of Seth Baxter. Erickson and Perez explained that they were looking for Seth Baxter's tape (which Mark had modified to make his voice sound like Jigsaw's) to prove Peter was behind it as well.
William's Test Edit
Unnerved by this, Mark arrived at Jill Tuck's clinic and forcefully took control of John's final games, which John intended for them to carry out together, and demanded for Jill to give him five envelopes left in the box she received from John's will.These were in saw V but did not show a important part in the film as we see in saw VI.
Mark abducted John's former insurance agent, William Easton, and placed him through a series of tests. During the game, Mark was forced to leave due to more developments in the case. Perez informed him that Peter's fingerprints were contaminated, and that the tape was found. The three then went to the location where it was being decoded, and Perez began questioning Mark's apparent anxiousness and expressed her disbelief in Peter's involvement. Erickson then revealed to Mark that Peter's fingerprints revealed he was already dead. Immediately after this revealation, the tape was decoded, and Mark proceeded to kill Erickson, Perez, and the technician who decoded the tape. Mark demanded to know who else knew his secret, and with her dying breath Perez replied "everyone". After finishing her off, Mark once again planted Strahm's finger prints at the scene, and set the building on fire to destroy the evidence,
John's Will Edit
He arrived at the building where William's game was taking place just as it was ending, and discovered a printout of his letter to Amanda. As he read it, Jill entered the room and subdued him with an electric shock. She then strapped an unconscious Hoffman into a seat before placing him in a modified Reverse Beartrap. As he regained consciousness, she showed him that she had received a sixth envelope from John, which instructed her to test Mark. Jill left Mark with a minute timer, and Mark proceeded to break one of his hands with the device, in order to free himself from his restraints. He then placed the device between two metal bars on the doors window, and when the timer expired the trap opened partially, enabling him to slip his head out, tearing his right cheek open in the process.
After escaping the Reverse Beartrap 2.0, Mark returned to his hideout, where he stitched his cheek and bandaged his hand. Jill met with Matt Gibson, an internal affairs officer at Mark's precinct, and incriminated Mark as John's accomplice.
Meanwhile, Mark plotted on exacting his revenge on Jill by distracting and seperating the police with the junkyard trap and Bobby Dagen's traps, while also leaving videos for Gibson, offering cryptic clues to the location of Bobby's game and promising to stop the game if Jill is handed over to him. Using the clues, Gibson discovered the location of Bobby's game, and Hoffman's hideout, located in the junkyard.
The police raided Hoffman's hideout , but this was all part of his plan as he had simultaneously infiltrated the police mourge in a body bag. After escaping from the body bag, he murdered the remaining officers in his precinct, and eventually found Jill. After knocking her unconscious he placed her in the original Reverse Beartrap, killing her. The last words he said to Jill were "Game Over".
Mark destroyed his hideout and prepared to flee the city, but was attacked and sedated by three men wearing pig masks, the leader removed his mask, revealing himself as Dr. Lawrence Gordon, who had received a tape left by John, in which he instructed Gordon to watch over Jill and to act on his behalf if anything happened to her.
After waking up in The Bathroom Trap, Mark attempted to reach for a hacksaw, but Lawrence threw it out the bathroom, leaving him no means to escape. Lawrence then proceeded to shut off the lights and closed the door, leaving Mark to die.
It has been confirmed by the producers that Mark did not escape the bathroom. It can be assumed that he eventually died of starvation. However in late 2014 Cary Elwes and Costas Mandylor were in talks about reprising their roles from the franchise on a television series based on the films. Which indicates that Hoffman may be confirmed to be alive if the series were to take off,however some fans have speculated he could just appear in flashbacks throughout the series in scenes set before his death, similar to Jigsaw's posthumous appearances in Saw IV-VII.
Kill Count Edit
- Seth Baxter: Sliced in half in The Pendulum Trap
- Technician: Used as a shield against Perez's bullets
- Agent Lindsey Perez: Stabbed in the abdomen
- Agent Dan Erickson: Slashed jugular vein
- Agent Peter Strahm: Slowly Crushed by Coffin Trap
- Matt Gibson & two unnamed officers: Shot by an automatic gun turret
- Five unnamed SWAT officers: Poisoned by nerve gas booby trap
- Dr. Heffner: Stabbed in the throat
- Unnamed police officer: Stabbed in the throat
- Unnamed lawyer: Stabbed in the throat
- Palmer: Neck snapped
- Unnamed police officer: Stabbed in the throat
- Rogers: Shot through the eye
- Jill Tuck: Jaws ripped apart in The Reverse Bear Trap
Mark outwardly acts as a hard-working and responsible police officer. Under the Jigsaw persona, however, he is much more cold-blooded and very apathetic towards his victims. He also shows signs of needing to be in control of situations, and modifying them to make himself in control if he isn't. It is shown in Saw V that he loved his sister and was angered when her killer was released from prison.
However, Saw V, Saw VI, and Saw 3D showed the lengths Mark will go to in order to protect his identity. When his identity is threatened, he becomes much more brutal and willing to break any rules and kill anyone he has to. This was shown when he murders two FBI agents and six police officers after his identity is revealed.