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James "Wilke" Wilkerson III is a recurring character who first appears in Dance Amongst Daggers. He is portrayed by Austin Butler.

PlotEdit

Although Wilke appears as a member of Guitar Face and performs at the benefit in Dance Amongst Daggers, his first major storyline occurs in Dogs Playing Poker. Toby uses Daphne and Emmett to try to cheat against Wilke in poker because Toby owes Wilke money.

Wilke, like Toby, is an avid gambler and is shown to be in debt in The Persistence of Memory due to a poor bet on a Notre Dame game. He cannot repay his debt until Toby repays Wilke the $10,000 he lost in their poker games. In order to gather the money they need, Wilke and Toby decide to steal a chemistry test from Buckner Hall and sell it to other students for profit ($1,000 each). Wilke becomes Daphne's cooking partner during this episode (a class he takes for the easy A), and he defends her against Clover, a bullying girl in their class.

Wilke is caught by the principal for the stolen test in The Stag Hunt because other students admit that they purchased the test from him. He attempts to save Toby from punishment by taking the sole blame, but Toby eventually decides to come clean as well. Wilke is suspended from school for two weeks.

During his suspension, he appears at Buckner Hall to collect his school books in Pandora's Box and complains to Daphne that they still have to do their homework during the suspension. He notices her bad mood (due to her recent discovery that Regina knew about the switch for years) and asks if she's okay. This prompts Daphne to skip school with Wilke, and they spend the day hanging out in her old neighborhood, where they drink alcohol out of a flask and discuss Daphne's relationship with Emmett. When they arrive back at Wilke's car to drive home, they find a boot has been placed on his tire due to unpaid parking tickets. They almost have sex in the back seat of his car, but Daphne changes her mind because Wilke brings up the switch. Daphne then calls Emmett for a ride home.

In The Homecoming, Wilke shares the big news with Toby that he got Guitar Face a gig at the East-West music festival by sending in a DVD of their band from the Buckner fundraiser, but he also admits that he secured their spot by advertising that they have a deaf drummer, Emmett. They try to convince Emmett to play a gig with their band, but he turns them down by telling them he isn't interested. Emmett's disinterest in the band is due to the poor deaf ettiquette displayed by Wilke and Toby. Kennish Car Wash holds a charity car wash to support Carlton. Bay was surprised to see Wilke at the car wash since she didn't think he was the charitable type. Then Toby explains that he lied to him telling him that it was a bikini car wash and that was the reason he showed up. At the car wash, Wilke flirts with Daphne. Emmett eventually changes his mind about the festival, which is an implied result of Toby's confrontation with Emmett about his relationship with Bay.

Wilke attends the East West Music Festival with Guitar Face in Starry Night, where it is revealed that he has lied about their time slot for the festival. Guitar Face is not opening for the Cold War Kids, but are in fact on Stage D (far from the main stage) and playing in the same time slot as Arcade Fire, which strongly influences their audience turnout. It is Toby's idea to advertise the band as "Free Booze" in order to encourage viewer turnout, but Wilke is the one who instigates it. This has a negative response, and the audience boos their band. Daphne leaves during their set because she is upset by Bay's "I'm With the Drummer" t-shirt, and Wilke notices her disappearance. Wilke finds Daphne on a dock later that day, and again asks Daphne about her relationship with Emmett. He encourages Daphne to share her problems with him, and she opens up to Wilke about the return of Angelo and her disappointment that she feels she can no longer talk to Emmett about her problems. When she expresses the desire to turn off her brain, Wilke playfully pushes her into the water to cheer her up.

Wilke and Toby create a music video for Guitar Face in The Tempest. They get jobs at Kennish Car Wash to make money to rent a capybara (a rodent), which they want to use as their "hook" in the music video. Daphne asks Wilke where she can purchase a fake I.D. to go to a club called Joey's with the girls on the basketball game because the creator of fake I.D.s at Carlton recently graduated. This inspires Wilke to create fake identification cards with Toby in order to fund their music video, with Wilke acting as salesperson and Toby acting as manufacturer. Later, Wilke shows up at Joey's under the impression that he was invited because he was told the time and who she would be with. Daphne makes it clear to Wilke that they are just friends, even though Wilke mentions the making out in the car and the heart-to-hearts they have been having. Wilke's ego is bruised when Daphne claims Wilke isn't her type, and Wilke responds by bringing up her relationship with Emmett.

After this, Wilke has an abrupt conversation with Daphne in Les Soeurs D'Estrees when she asks Wilke to buy a cupcake to help save Emmett's motorcycle. It is also revealed that Wilke has switched cooking partners (now partnering with Clover, the girl who formerly mocked Daphne in class) and Wilke expresses his disinterest with being just friends with Daphne. At the end of the epsisode, Wilke picks up Daphne from Emmett's house after Daphne has decided to forget pursuing Emmett.

Wilke takes Daphne to a golf course in Expulsion From the Garden of Eden where they drive around in a golf cart, and he reveals that he had Scoliosis when he was ten after Daphne lands them in a sand trap. This brings them closer because he admits to being teased in school ("only girls get that") and having to wear a brace 23 hours a day. However, Daphne's memory of their date is tainted when she discovers that Wilke also took other girls from the Buckner basketball and volleyball teams to the golf course for their first dates. Her displeasure is increased when Wilke asks her to World of Fun (an amusement park) on their second date, which she also heard about from the other girls. Wilke defends himself by saying that there are only a small number of fun things to do in their town, but Daphne still storms away. Wilke approaches Toby for help and advice, asking for Toby to put in a good word. Wilke admits that he really likes Daphne and that she is different, and not just another girl on a to-do list. At the end of the episode, Wilke appears at the Kennish house and challenges Daphne to a basketball contest (if she makes two of three shots he'll leave her alone), but he cheats by knocking the ball away. Daphne confronts him about the Scoliosis story, calling it phony because Toby has no knowledge of it, but Wilke tells Daphne that she is the only person he has told since moving to Mission Hills.

Wilke and Daphne are selected as male and female Athlete of the Month at Buckner during The Art of Painting, winning a certificate, steak dinner, Kansas City Royal tickets, and X.S. Rush Sport Drinks (a corporate sponsor). In exchange, they have to give some of the X.S. Rush employees a tour of the school to encourage further donations towards the school. Wilke is enthusiastic during the school tour, but Daphne sidetracks and tries to get the sponsors to support Carlton as well. After the tour, Wilke confronts Daphne about her lack of support for Buckner, and Daphne claims that he is really fun, but he doesn't understand because he has always had so much. Wilke responds by telling Daphne he needed the tour to go well because his father is on the board for the new athletic centre, which Daphne neglected to realize.

In Write a Lonely Soldier, Wilke tells Toby that he has been working on a set list for a kegger on Saturday at Annie Barker's. Toby tells Wilke that he can't come to the party because he has a gig at a club that Simone set up. Wilke is upset because he believes that playing at this party will open up opportunities to play at college parties for the rest of the year. The party eventually falls through. Wilke visits Daphne at the Kennish Car Wash where she introduces him to her snobbish classmate Travis. Wilke's inability to converse with Travis due to his deafness causes Travis to mock Wilke's relationship with Daphne, asking Daphne if Wilke even knows she is deaf. This in turn causes Daphne to question Wilke's attitude towards their relationship because she believes he does not take her deafness seriously due to his lack of interest in learning to sign. While Wilke and Daphne eat lunch together, Wilke asks to be invited to Daphne's basketball games and calls himself her "B.F.", which he jokingly clarifies stands for "biggest fan". The issue of Wilke's lack of ability with signing presents itself again later in the episode when Wilke and Daphne are sitting together in his car in the dark. Daphne turns on his car light and tells Wilke she wants to communicate in sign language with him, and gives him a name sign (signing a W and then sweeping back his hair). Wilke feels this looks a little vain and Daphne agrees, but she thinks it is a good fit because Wilke is a little vain (which he agrees with). Wilke apologizes for his lack of seriousness but does still continue to joke around.

Wilke participates in the taping of "Dawn of the Deaf" for Emmett's birthday present during The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters. Wilke finds out about Emmett and Simone's indiscretion when he holds Simone's phone during the taping. Wilke has a confrontation with Simone about the one night stand, and Simone asks for Wilke's silence. When the taping ends, Wilke leaves despite Toby's persistence that he stays, saying he has to do homework.

In Venus, Cupid, Folly, and Time, Daphne tries to figure out a clever way to ask Wilke to the Carlton prom. She decides to post "Wanted: James "Wilke" Wilkerson III. Considered armed and dangerous" posters in the Buckner hallway, and dressed as a cop, Daphne arrests Wilke with handcuffs. Wilke tells Daphne that he can't come to the prom because he has a modern civilization paper due, and he has been grounded by his father until it is finished. Daphne comes to the Wilkerson house to bring lemon bars for Wilke, but Wilke has snuck out of the house. Mr. Wilkerson tells Daphne that it must be a final act of rebellion before he leaves, accidentally revealing to Daphne that Wilke is going to boarding school. Daphne prepares to go to the prom with Bay, Emmett, and Travis, but Wilke arrives unannounced in a suit with a limo and a corsage while Travis is waiting for Daphne to finish getting dressed. Daphne insists that Travis still rides with them to the prom, which bothers Wilke because he had planned their night. At the Carlton prom, Daphne confronts Wilke about boarding school, and he tells her he was waiting until after prom to talk about it. Although initially angry, Daphne decides to accept Wilke's suggestion to enjoy one last night. When Daphne suggests inviting everyone, Wilke tells Daphne about Emmet and Simone, causing Daphne to confront Emmett. It is later revealed that Daphne and Wilke did not want to try a long distance relationship, so they broke off the relationship.

In Ecce Mono , Simone mentions Wilke and told Daphne that he hooked up with Clover Ranberg.

​Physical Appearance and PersonalityEdit

Wilke is a tall, muscular, blonde guy with blue eyes. Daphne describes Wilke as "romantic and sweet" in Expulsion From the Garden of Eden. Wilke is charismatic and flirtatious and is also known as a ladies man. Toby acknowledges Wilke's status as a man-slut in Expulsion From the Garden of Eden, and also says that Wilke doesn't stick with a girl for more than two weeks. Toby also comments that Wilke is a fun guy to be around. Daphne calls Wilke a little vain in Write a Lonely Soldier and Wilke doesn't disagree with her. Wilke is 6 foot 0

HistoryEdit

When he was 10 years old, Wilke had scoliosis and had to wear a brace. He had surgery to get it corrected and since then he has had a sensitive back. Daphne forms a connection with Wilke because of this, as he understands being teased for being different. Wilke has been best friends with Toby (and to a lesser extent, Bay) since they were kids.

RelationshipEdit

Family MembersEdit

  • James Wilkerson II (father)

PartnersEdit

Simone Sinclair (Ex-Girlfriend)

Daphne Vasquez (Ex-Girlfriend)

FriendsEdit

Toby Kennish

  • Toby and Wilke were best friends before the latter left for boarding school. They ran a band together and both of them had gambling problems.

Bay Kennish

  • Though they've known each other for a long time, there was little interaction between Bay and Wilke in the series. Wilke mentioned to Daphne that he and Toby would always hide behind the couch where the Vasquezes currently reside and that Bay would find them there and bring them cookies. In Love Among the Ruins, while playing pool, Bay told Daphne that she used to practice a lot at Wilke's house.

Photo GalleryEdit

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