He has a sneaky, sleazy, crafty, and sarcastic personality. When the player leaves his store without buying anything, he will say 'thanks a lot...' in a sarcastic way. But if the player does buy something, he will give them a sincere thank you. He is thought to be 35 in Wild World, as two passwords state Redd is that age. He considers Tom Nook as competition, referring to him as "that raccoon in an apron."
Through the Animal Crossing series, Redd owns small businesses that makes most of its profits by over-charging its customers. Unlike Tom Nook, Redd charges for admission into some of his shops and on an invite-only basis. He tends to pressure players into buying his wares by concocting stories and lying about his products.
In Animal Crossing
In Animal Crossing, Crazy Redd owns a tent suspiciously labelled the "Black Market" - the "Black" being crossed out clumsily in red marker. His name could be a reference to this, making it the "Redd" Market. When he shows up in town, Redd sends the player a letter telling them the date at which he will arrive. On this date, the player will have to wander around town until finding him in a random spot. He will occasionally sell paintings. Unlike in other games, Redd has a "B" (possibly standing for "black", as in "black market") on his apron.
In Wild World, Redd appears once a week on a specific day (which the player can choose by speaking with Lyle) and sets his tent up outside the Town Hall. On the first week of his arrival, the player will not know the password required to enter, and so will have to ask the villagers. A random villager will have the password, not necessarily the closest friend of the player. After reciting the password correctly to Redd, the tent will open and allow the player in. The player will then be asked to pay 3,000 Bells in order to use his store.
If they do not agree to this, the player will not be allowed to purchase anything, and will have to inquire with the villagers next week for another password.
Once the player becomes a member of his "family", Redd will send them a weekly letter, received on the day before he arrives, with a new password.
It is believed that Redd is in cahoots with an Lyle who offers forgery insurance. Insurance can only be bought weekly at a price which does not cover for the cost of buying a forged painting, meaning both Lyle and Redd have made a profit at the expense of the player. This belief is also upheld by how Redd knows the day of the week on which he should come to the town, which matches with the day the player selected when talking to Lyle.
Redd's age is implied by a password to be 35, though this is never verified.
In City Folk
In City Folk, Redd owns a small shop on the left of the city, in what villagers call a "dark alley". To get into his shop, a villager or friend would need to send an invitation to the player. This replaces the secret password in Wild World. After buying something, Redd will give the player an invitation to send to other players - If they visit Redd's, he would give 1,000 Bells to the player. The entry fee is 3,000 Bells. Redd changes his inventory every Wednesday.
He appears to have no connection with Lyle, who now runs the Happy Room Academy in the city. Therefore, insurance does not exist and any forgeries cannot be refunded at all. Most of the time when he guarantees its value, it's real.
In New Leaf
In New Leaf, Redd returns to the tent business, setting up in the Event Plaza. He specializes in the art department now, only selling paintings and the newly added statues. Some paintings and statues are always genuine, but most can be forgeries. However, forgeries now have noticeable cosmetic differences from the real version to make it less luck-based. The fake versions of the normal items are a separate collectable item. Unlike the statues there are certain paintings which are now always genuine. His store runs on a "one-a-day" policy, where he only allows customers to buy one item per day. To prevent loopholes, any item purchased from Redd in one town counts in all others, therefore ensuring that a single player can only purchase a single item from him each day. He also mails purchases to the player's mailbox the following day, rather than giving the purchases to the player straightaway (marking purchased artwork with a special note).
When the player encounters Redd for the first time, he will be wandering around the player's island. He will offer to sell the player a painting, which is always genuine in this first encounter. His boat appears in the northern secret beach but cannot be entered if he's present on the island.
Later on Redd will open up his boat and offer four pieces of art and two piece of furniture. A genuine piece art is not guaranteed per visit and sometimes there can be more than one real piece available.
Should the player attempt to invite Redd to the campsite by scanning his , he will have the following to say:
"Jolly Redd's Treasure Trawler. We sell masterpieces by the great masters, plus stuff for your master bedroom. Oh, it's you! Uh...you know we don't do refunds, right? O-of course you do. So how can I help you? Your wha? Campsite? Sure, cousin, I can help you furnish your...oh, you want me to STAY there? You know I'd really love to, but, uh... Oh, a customer just walked in. Sorry, I gotta deal with this. Take care!"
When Redd's travelling tent of "bargains" comes to your town, prepare to break out your wallet. This slightly seedy merchant's prices generally aren't quite as incredible as he would have you believe, so buyer beware.
Crazy Redd wants you to buy, buy, buy. But the black market prices are high, high, high. So don't be distracted by the trickets he hawks. See if you can't sniff out that one, rare gem he's selling in his tent
The owner and proprietor of Crazy Redd's Emporium, which sells furniture acquired on the black market. It's said he's famous in the underworld. He drops by once a week and sets up his tent in front of the town hall. His shop's full of rare items, but the prices are high. It's open until midnight, an hour longer than Tom Nook's place, which pleases night players.
His symbol is the leaf of the Ginkgo Tree, similar to Nook's recognizable leaf symbol.
His store's tune in Animal Crossing was Nook's Cranny's theme in opposite pitch and they used the same instruments.
Additionally, in the Japanese release, both of them are members of mythical species from Japanese folklore. Redd is a kitsune and Nook is a tanuki.
In Animal Crossing: Wild World, it is hinted that his age is 35; this is because one of Redd's passwords is "Crazy Redd is 35"
Redd shares being based off of a famous literary work, along with Gulliver. In the first part of Dante's epic poem the Divine Comedy, Dante's Inferno, an underworld demon called Rubicante was considered a grafter. A grafter is a person who sells things through unfair or illegal means, and Rubicante is italian for "Crazyred".
Redd being a fox is most likely a reference to the actor Redd Foxx, who in the sitcom Sanford and Son played the owner of a junk yard, Fred Sanford, who was known for attempting to scam people out of money. Their personalities also seem to be very similar, supporting this claim.
His catchphrase, "cousin" bares a striking resemblance to the character Reynard in a medieval tale called Reynard the Fox. Reynard similarly calls most other characters "cousin" as well; especially when he is about to deceive them.
In Happy Home Designer, when speaking to Joan, she thinks of retiring, but she says she can not think of a replacement. She then says "that wicked fox" offered to take her place, but she makes it obvious she doesn't trust him. Also, she may say she has booby-traps to protect her turnips from "turnipnappers," and then say "Like that no-good fox. Ooh, if I ever get ahold of him, I'll knock the sly smirk right off his snout!" Some other things she says are against foxes, telling the player "Just don't be a fox, kiddo."
In Pocket Camp, there is a harmonious amenity called "Redd's shrine" which features statues of Redd.
Redd may be a reference to the Tekiya, a historical Japanese caste of nomadic merchants. They would travel the countryside, setting up stalls and booths in towns during festivals, and leave shortly after. They had a reputation for being swindlers and were known for shoddy, stolen or overpriced merchandise.
The name Jolly Redd could possibly be a reference to Jolly Roger, a flag and symbol that is synonymous with pirates.
It is possible that Redd’s character was also influenced by “Honest John”, a character from the Disney movie Pinocchio. Like Redd, Honest John is a fox who has a swindling and deceptive personality, as well as the both of them having an adjective preceding their names. However, since the depiction of foxes being deceptive is age-old and spans across many cultures, it’s possible that this similarity is a complete coincidence.