Josh Birk is an actor who tags along with the 3rd Street Saints to study the gang's behavior in order for him to make his role in an upcoming movie based on the gang's adventures convincing. Josh has a crush on Shaundi, and Male Voice 3 teases Shaundi about this. Shaundi, however, does not return Birk's feelings, and finds him extremely annoying.
He is well-known for his role as Nyte Blayde in a TV show of the same name about a vampire hunter-turned-vampire, who is hunted by an organization he once worked for.
Depicted as a true idiot that is also narcissistic, Josh is responsible for landing The Protagonist, Shaundi and Johnny Gat in prison after setting off a silent alarm. He is next seen working for STAG in a commercial. The Protagonist soon seizes an opportunity to kidnap Birk in an attempt to hurt STAG, and succeeds. Later, when STAG assaults the Saints HQ to recover Josh, Cyrus Temple offers the Saints the chance to turn Josh over, but he wishes to stay with the Saints out of an attempt to get closer to Shaundi. If he is kept he will become a homie that can be called to show up as either himself or Nyte Blayde.
Saints Row: The Third
|“|| Shaundi: Josh, are you trying to get us all jail time?|
Josh Birk: What? I don't wanna be some dude's bitch.
|~ Josh after tripping the alarm during When Good Heists Go Bad|
Josh is an actor who gets cast in a Saints Movie. He goes along with the 3rd Street Saints gang members to rob the Stilwater 1st National Bank as part of a publicity stunt, and to get into character as a true Saint. However the robbery goes bad when they are attacked by the clerks and gang members. Josh ends up causing bigger problems when he sets off the alarm alerting the police and SWAT teams. Josh then does a runner, with fear of going to prison, leaving the Saints behind.
During STAG's war against the gangs of Steelport, especially the 3rd Street Saints, Josh is hired as a mascot for them, playing his role of Nyte Blayde. This attracts the Saints, which leads to The Protagonist and Viola DeWynter to kidnap him during a publicity shoot in order to draw out STAG.
When STAG attack the Saints HQ where Josh is being held, STAG's leader Cyrus Temple approaches the Protagonist demanding to return Josh, and in return he will cool down STAG's heat on the Saints. Josh will however ask the Protagonist to not hand him over, as he wants to be with Shaundi. Its up to the Player to decide what to do with Josh.
Saints Row IV
A few years after Saints Row: The Third, Josh is afflicted with the Saints who are now in government, with The Protagonist now President of the United States. Josh is present at the White House and will ask the Protagonist if he would like to come to Camp David to watch Nyte Blayde with him and Oleg. The player can walk away or accept, however the latter doesn't happen due to the invasion of the Zin Empire, which results in the Protagonist being captured by Zinyak.
When The Protagonist escapes from his simulation into the real world, he and Kinzie Kensington try to contact Josh and Oleg who are at Camp David, and somewhat unaware of the Zin's invasion. Josh and Oleg are in the middle of a conversation about Nyte Blayde and don't answer The Protagonist's call as they don't recognize the number. Shortly after, Zinyak atomises the earth, most likely killing Josh and Oleg.
Josh's counterpart Nyte Blayde appears in a training simulation created by Matt Miller, which ends up being hijacked by Zinyak, leading to the Protagonist and Miller having to kill Nyte Blayde. The Protagonist then gives Matt Miller all rights to the Nyte Blayde franchise and rewards him also with his Blayde's superpowers.
Enter the Dominatrix
In a Directors Cut for Enter The Dominatrix which reveals what was cut from Saints Row IV, Josh assisted The Protagonist, Shaundi and Kinzie against their fight with the Zin, who launch an attack invasion of Steelport. During this, he is dressed in his Nyte Blayde outfit.
In drawings, its shown that Josh battles with a massive one eyed monster and manages to bring it down, but gets injured in the process he says his last words "Earn this...earn... this" then dies in Shaundi's arms much to her distress and The Protagonist angrily yells "ZINYAK!".
When called as a Homie, he arrives in a Saints-Colored Bootlegger. He uses the KA-1 Kobra during combat. He makes comments on "cleansing", and other cosmetic related things he deals with as an actor.
When 2 Homies are recruited together outside of missions, many will have conversations.
- Nyte Blade has been compared to the McBain TV series (from |The Simpsons) by the writers of Saints Row: The Third, and is a radio serial that can be heard at any time.
- Originally Josh was to be recruited as a lieutenant after the events of STAG Party.
- Josh's surname may be a joke about his stupidity, as "berk" is a word meaning idiot.
- While held captive by the Saints, he proposed marriage to Shaundi six times.=
- Once he is unlocked as a homie, he can show up in two outfits: Himself (normal) & Nyte Blayde. Both can be recruited at the same time. As Nyte Blayde, he remains in character at all times.
- Unlike all other primary Saints, when Josh (normal) is recruited as a homie in Saints Row: The Third, he can be taken as a hostage and used as a human shield.
- Despite an advertisement showing the ability to wear the Nyte Blayde outfit, the player cannot.
- With a glitch using the Inauguration Station, you can wear the Nyte Blayde outfit. Simply put on the outfit, upload it, and add it to your queue on saintsrow.com. Once this is done, you should be able to wear it in Saints Row: The Third by downloading the character.
- In the "Strap It On" trailer he is seen with a Saints purple pendant but it is absent in the game.
- Despite his incompetence, Birk somehow manages to escape police custody when the Saints are arrested.
- There is an interview played on in-game radio, where Josh makes comments such as "my butler puts my pants on me one leg at a time, just like everyone else".
- If he is recruited as a Homie, he may sometimes say "Wait til they get a load of me", which was originally spoken by The Joker in the 1989 film "Batman".
- The White Female Protagonist in Saints Row 2 also says this line.
- Despite starring on a violent TV show and personal getting involved with a very violent gang, Josh has a personal distaste of violence as shown in the mission "When Good Heist goes Bad" and when called on the cell phone, he sometimes say, "We aren't going to do anything violent, are we?".
- Josh obviously has no sense of reality sometimes, as he views his rich and pampered life as very "average", and he thinks he is a gift to women. This is shown as he is constantly trying to hit on Shaundi. Josh also thinks highly of his acting ability and his TV show. Yet, The Protagonist, Shaundi, and Burt Reynolds don't care about it.
- Josh is indirectly responsible for Johnny Gat's apparent death, as Josh is responsible for setting off the bank's alarm, which caused the Saints to be arrested, which resulted in them being taken as prisoners aboard the Syndicate plane.
- Canonically, Josh Birk is not given to Cyrus Temple as in Saints Row IV he is seen in the White Crib during The Saints Wing and also hangs out with Oleg during The Real World.
- In Saints Row IV, Keith David can be seen reading a magazine with an advertisement for a cologne called 'Birksniff', which has Josh on it. Birksniff also features in Saints Row: The Third in one of five advertisements for Planet Saints.
- Josh is the only character (except The Protagonist) in the Saints Row series to be seen with dual-wielded pistols (KA-1 Kobra) in game, though he is not seen using them.
- In Saints Row IV when recruited as a homie, Josh (normal) carries a Quickshot Pistol, while Josh (Nyte Blayde) carries a Heavy Pistol.