Jameson's early life is largely unknown. It is known he was once in the Navy and had experience piloting water vehicles. He was once married a woman named Julia and had a son named John Jameson. However, tragedy struck when his wife Julia was gunned down by a masked assailant. Since then he deeply distrusted anyone who wore a mask.
He started work at the Daily Bugle as a reporter, where he was known as Jigsaw Jameson. He eventually rose through the ranks until he was chief editor. He employed Robbie Robertson, Glory Grant, Peter Parker, and Eddie Brock. He eventually started the television station J3, which is named after his initials.
While a reporter he published the obituary for Nick Fury, having accidentally flipped the image so the eye patch was on the wrong side.
Since the emergence of Spider-Man Jameson has maintained that the would-be hero is a menace to society and should be brought to justice. He would take his hatred of Spider-Man too far when he hired a detective named Mac Gargan and turned him into the Scorpion. Mac was unable to turn back to normal and eventually turned on Jameson, forcing J.J. to seek the help of the wallcrawler.
One of Jameson's biggest mistakes was hiring Brock. Brock convinced Jameson that Curt Connors was the Lizard, but was unable to find proof making Jameson look like a fool. Brock then reported on Spencer Smythe's attempt to capture Spider-Man, wanting to report the unmasking of hero on live television. Unfortunately Jameson's Penthouse was severely damaged during the capture, and the wrong person was unmasked. The real Spider-Man showed up, which caused Jameson to be laughed at by even the Fox Network. For that, Brock was fired.
His son became an astronaut and during a space mission went to an asteroid. Jameson was immensely proud of his son but worried about his safe return. While on the asteroid John discovered Promethium X and the Venom Symbiote. The symbiote attacked John and caused his shuttle to crash on the George Washington Bridge. Jameson flew his helicopter to the scene of the crash despite no aircraft was allowed in the area. While there he found his son and the co-pilot safely on the bridge, having been saved by Spider-Man before the shuttle crashed into the river. Brock reported that Spider-Man had stolen the newfound element. Excited, Jameson placed a one million dollar award on Spider-Man's head. Spider-Man told him Rhino was responsible but Jameson did not believe the disgraced hero.
However, when John woke up he too talked of a rhino confirming Spider-Man's story. Realizing the truth Jameson retracted his reward and fired Brock. However, Shocker kidnapped John forcing Jameson to seek the hero's help. The hero did, but for John not Jameson, and he got his son back. Later, Jameson comforted his son saying that the nightmare of symbiote attacking him will go away.
Jameson was in a limousine with Peter talking about a potential job for the photographer. But they were knocked out and taken to a strange location. Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. brought them there to call upon Jameson's help. The Chameleon was hired to kill two diplomats at a United Nations conference and Fury wanted Jameson to investigate and keep an eye out. Jameson was given a pin that could call S.H.I.E.L.D. agents should he find any information. Jameson was unable to find anything but Spider-Man was. The Chameleon was apparently stopped and the conference started with Jameson in the front row. Peter showed up wanting to take pictures but Jameson had no idea how he got in. Spider-Man then appeared and stopped Peter, who was really the Chameleon.
Jameson was a stockholder and board member of Oscorp Industries. When the company developed chemical weapons he printed an article on the subject, much to the anger of Norman Osborn. Later he was taken hostage by the Green Goblin along with Anastasia Hardy, Wilson Fisk, and Mary Jane Watson. They were all saved by Spider-Man.
Peter eventually quit the Bugle when he got a job at Fisktronics, which angered Jameson. However, Peter was framed by Richard Fisk for treason. Jameson secretely hired Matt Murdock to defend him. Peter was eventually found completely innocent and the young Fisk was sent to prison. When asked by Murdock why he couldn't say who hired him, Jameson simply said he did not want Peter thinking he actually cared for the young boy.
When Peter and Mary Jane were engaged he and Fisk began to compete over who could spend the more on the wedding. Jameson eventually gave Peter a van from the Daily Bugle as their primary vehicle.
Jameson is a tough and strict editor. He seems to have an anger problem probably due to being in charge of so many people.
Though he hates the web slinging hero and publishes anything that will defame the hero, he refuses to cover up the truth. He is an honest and ethical journalist above all else. After it was revealed that Eddie Brock lied to Jameson about who stole the Promethium X he was quick to print a retraction. Later, he published an article that Oscorp was developing chemical weapons, despite the fact that he is a stockholder and board member.
Even though he will never admit to it, he cares for everyone that works for him. He secretly hired a lawyer for Peter and personally sought out the truth for Robertson when both were framed.
One version of Jameson was one of the few remaining survivors in a world devastated by Spider-Carnage. He desperately searched for survivors along with that world's Robbie. They were attacked by that world's Green Goblin and Hobgoblin who were seeking his antenna for Spider-Carnage's secret plot. Our world's Spider-Man was sent there by Madame Web, and was a bit surprised to see that Jameson hated him with a much greater passion.
Another version was from the world where the armored Spider-Man was from. This version was Peter's publicist and loved the hero. This is probably since this Spider-Man's alternate identity public knowledge and was quite wealthy.
Jameson is voiced by Edward Asner on Spider-Man and Richard Newman on Spider-Man Unlimited. Asner is best known for playing Lou Grant on The Mary Tyler Moore Show and Lou Grant. Both Jameson and Grant share several parallels in their characterizations. His name appeared on X-Men but he did not.
Jameson's first name in the comics is John, but this is never used in the series.
Jameson was not allowed to have his trademark cigar-smoking due to censorship restrictions placed on cartoons.