John Black and Marlena Evans are fictional characters and a supercouple from the American daytime drama Days of our Lives. John is portrayed by Drake Hogestyn and Marlena is portrayed by Deidre Hall. In magazines and in advertising, as well as on internet message boards, the couple is often referred to by the portmanteau "Jarlena" (for John and Marlena) or "Jolena" (for John and Marlena).
The pair's romance in the 1980s was short-lived, but it left an indelible mark on Days of Our Lives fans and the soap opera world.
In 1991, Hall returned to Days of our Lives, and returned to her role as Dr. Marlena Evans. It was revealed that Marlena's supposed death in the plane crash was not true and Marlena had spent the previous four years in a coma. Soon afterwards, Wayne Northrop, the original portrayer of Roman Brady also returned to the show. In a stunning turn of events, Drake Hogestyn remained on the show through a piece of storytelling that revealed that his character was an impostor programmed with the memories of the real Roman Brady, and was a dangerous assassin. As a result, the fake Roman reverted to the name John Black. While Marlena attempted to reconcile with the real Roman, John would not leave her alone, and eventually the two had an affair that produced their daughter Belle and led to Marlena and Roman's divorce. John had shown his true colors.
This was not to be the end of their turmoil, because soon afterwards Marlena was possessed by a demon called Sucubus. John, who had found out that he had been a priest in his former life, was able to perform an exorcism and Marlena was saved. However, the two could not resume their relationship at that time, and after John left the priesthood he fell into yet another affair with Kristen Blake, a former lover who was the adopted daughter of John's worst enemy, Stefano DiMera, the man who had brainwashed John to believe that he was Roman. Kristen eventually grew insecure about her relationship with John and cooked up one scheme after another to keep him away from Marlena. However, Kristen was exposed and John and Marlena were finally able to reunite.
In 2005, John and Marlena faced some obstacles when Marlena lost her memory. Amnesia specialist Alex North came to town, claiming to be Marlena's real husband from college. Marlena became torn between Alex and John and, due to John's raging jealousy and Alex's manipulations, especially his drugs, Marlena chose Alex. However, John did not give up on his love and did everything to try to win her back. However, even when it seemed that he was making headway, his drugs and manipulations enabled Alex to keep winning. The struggle continued to Morgan Island during Alex and Marlena's honeymoon in May 2006, after they had renewed their vows. On a fight on Morgan Island, Alex died.
Newly clearheaded, Marlena realized that Alex had been abusive during their marriage. She decided that she needed a little time to get back on her feet. Without any hard feelings, and with their love as strong as ever, Marlena chose to separate from John for a while, and she took a job in New Jersey. When it was discovered that Marlena was missing, however, John began to search for his love. With the help of Abe Carver, John rescued Marlena from a trunk in which she'd been held captive, in early October 2006. The couple's most current obstacle, as of December 2006, is fighting against EJ Wells, who is out to get John.
John and Marlena has recently married for the third time which is the first legal marriage to each other. However, none of the couple's children (Eric, Sami, Brady or Belle) could attend. After being presumably shot by the EJ, John fell into a coma. Marlena remained by his side, praying that he would wake up, he did wake up in May 2007. On October 17, John was a victim of a hit and run case, probably arranged by his great enemy Stefano DiMera. John was taken into emergency, but unfortunately died peacefully in the arms of Marlena, his greatest love of all time.
John came back to Salem as Stefano Dimera's pawn again. He doesn't remember Marlena or his family. He found out that he was Colleen Brady and Santo DiMera's son who was given up for adoption by Colleen when she was running away from Santo.