!!Emperor Kuzco
->'''Voiced by''': Creator/DavidSpade

This is Kuzco. ''Emperor'' Kuzco. A guy whose groove and style is equaled to only by his ego and inversely proportional to his sense of empathy. Kuzco was born and raised to rule but treats his kingdom as a giant toy, demanding constant pampering, belittling his subjects and callously punishing them for "throwing off his groove". He spends most of his time just admiring himself at the expense of pretty much everyone. Kuzco's flippant attitude finally bites him in the butt after his embittered ex-advisor Yzma tries to kill him, only to accidentally turn him into a llama and lose him, setting off the story of this jerky of an emperor trying to regain his throne, body, and maybe learn a few lesson in humility and friendship along the way.

* AffablyEvil: Pre-HeelFaceTurn, when talking to people Kuzco tends to be casual, generally friendly and even warm at times - despite being callously self-absorbed and uncaring towards others. This makes a lot of sense: rather than the typical villain pretending to be polite Kuzco legitimately believes that the world should revolve around him, so he can be as pleasant (if tactless) as he wants because people will get with the program no matter what. When people ''don't'' get with the program even the slightest bit, that's when he starts getting snide and showing how cruel he really is.
* AmbiguouslyGay:
** For starters, his massive earrings (although Yzma has the exact same ones, so it could be a statement of power).
** His body language and poise are certainly flamboyant, and at the very least CampStraight.
** He is disgusted by the women presented to him as potential brides at the beginning of the movie.
** To the fans, his relationship with Pacha could be considered this.
*** Ultimately averted in The Emperor's New School TV series, where he is ''extremely'' attracted to a girl.
* AntiHero: Starts out as a NominalHero, evolves into a Type II.
* BalefulPolymorph: Essentially every animal transformation he goes through in the movie.
* BerserkButton: Seriously. DON'T THROW OFF KUZCO'S GROOVE! He'll have you thrown out a window for it.
* BreakTheHaughty: Getting turned into a llama is just one step into Kuczo learning to be a better person.
* TheCaligula: Kuzco is a milder version, but he ''does'' have an elderly man defenestrated for the crime of "throwing off the emperor's groove".
* CampStraight
* CatchPhrase: "No touchy!"
* CelibateHero: He actually seems quite {{asexual}} in the movie. Averted in the TV series, however.
* CharacterDevelopment: He goes from being a self-absorbed, spoiled {{Jerkass}} at the beginning of the movie to a JerkWithAHeartOfGold who subtly apologizes for his actions at the end.
* ConvenientlyAnOrphan
* DeadpanSnarker
* DemotedToExtra: In the sequel, when Kronk takes the lead.
* DisneyDeath: After falling down a waterfall, he seemingly drowned. However, when Pacha was trying to give him CPR, we find out that he was just knocked unconscious.
* DisproportionateRetribution: Done hilariously, where a homeless man accidentally bumps into him during his song number, and gets promptly thrown out of the nearest window.
--> '''Kuzco''': You threw off my groove!
--> '''Guard''': Sorry, you threw off the Emperor's groove.
--> '''Old Man''': [as he is falling through the air] SOOOOOOOORRRRYYYYYYYYY!
* [[EccentricMillionaire Eccentric Emperor]]
* TheEmperor
* EvenEvilHasStandards: After he saves Pacha from falling, Pacha points out that he could have just let him fall. Kuzco responds by saying "Nobody that's heartless!"
* GenreSavvy
* HatesBeingTouched: He's very particular about people entering his personal bubble. Towards the end of the movie, he allows certain people to hug him or playfully hit him.
* HeelRealization: By the 2/3 of the movie.
* {{Hypocrite}}: Probably the biggest hypocrite (protagonist) in Disney history, and it's played for laughs. He states, very pointedly, that he was the "victim here" and was so put-upon by everyone who wanted to take him down, and yet sees no problem with endangering hundreds and destroying an entire mountain village for the sake of building his own summer home and water park.
* IdleRich
* ItsAllAboutMe: The page image and possible TropeCodifier.
* {{Jerkass}} [[CharacterDevelopment -->]] JerkWithAHeartOfGold
* {{Keet}}
* LeanAndMean
* MeaningfulName: Kuzco means "the center of the world" it was also the capital of the ancient Incan empire which seems to be where the movie takes place.
* MrViceGuy
* NotSoDifferent: Really, the differences between him and [[BigBad Yzma]] are quite superficial. And as it turns out, Yzma raised him, so that figures.
* ParentalAbandonment: No mention whatsoever is ever made to Kuzco's parents, presumably the previous rulers of the empire. Apparently, he was raised by Yzma: it's easy to see where he got his mean streak from.
** It's implied in one episode of [[TheEmperorsNewSchool the series]] Yzma offed Kuzco's Dad.
* PrideBeforeAFall: His pride sets him up for all the hilarious trauma of the movie.
* PrinceCharmless: To the potential brides in the opening. Subverted in that he was already the Emperor at this point.
* RichesToRags: Happens to Kuzco after being turned into a llama. At least most guys will be left with the shirt on their backs, Kuzco doesn't even have hands left! It says a lot about Kuzco that he gets over this pretty quickly under the assumption he can still boss people around and Yzma is still loyal.
* RoyalBrat: He has a tiny, elderly man defenestrated for throwing off his groove, criticizes his potential brides, and it's implied stuff like this happens on a daily basis.
* SmugSnake: Despite his Emperor position, it's very hard to take him seriously as a threat to anyone.
** He is at least a head shorter (if not more) than the other three leads of the film.
** He is very thin and seemingly unfit (though obviously not as bad as Yzma).
* [[spoiler:SpoiledSweet: In the end.]]
* TitleCharacter: Kuzco is "Emperor" to get a "new groove".
* {{Tsundere}}: A surprising platonic male version. After ''saving Pacha's life'' when he could have let him fall, he claims he was just doing it so that he could still lead him to the Palace. Not because he likes him or anything.
* UnsympatheticComedyProtagonist

->'''Voiced by:''' John Goodman

This is Pacha, a soft-spoken, roly-poly peasant who helps Kuzco find his way back to his empire. Pacha is the head man of his village and a loving husband and father. He values the traditions of his people and wants to make a good future for his kids. And he's the first person Kuzco's met (maybe ever) to not put up with his Imperial nonsense for a minute.
* BewareTheNiceOnes: Or the hulking, nice ones who can deliver one hell of a punch.
* TheBigGuy
* BumblingDad:
* DeadpanSnarker: He gets some pretty good lines in the film as it progresses.
* GentleGiant: Tall and husky, and definitely pretty strong, but mostly enjoys playing with his kids and talking to llamas.
* GoodParents
* HappilyMarried
* HugeGuyTinyGirl: With Chicha.
* NiceGuy: Keeps this up throughout the film even though Kusco is a world-class asshat that nobody likes.
* NiceHat
* OneHeadTaller: To Kusco in both of his forms.
* OnlySaneMan
* SilkHidingSteel: At first Pacha is very polite and affectionate, not saying more than he needs to and even helping a defenestrated old man. But he actually tends to pull BigDamnHeroes moments.
* TheStraightMan

->''"It's brilliant, brilliant, ''brrrrilliant'', I tell you! ''Genius'', I say!"''\\
'''Voiced by:''' Eartha Kitt

Alright gang now check out this piece of work. Now, this is Yzma, the emperor's royal advisory. Living proof that dinosaurs once roamed the Earth. Yzma raised Kuzco from his early childhood, preparing him for the throne while running the empire herself. Kuzco eventually becomes annoyed with her constantly going behind his back and fires her. Enraged at this callous discarding, Yzma concocts a plan to assassinate Kuzco and take the throne for herself.
* AxCrazy: Arguably the craziest Disney Villain to date.
* TheCaligula: Yzma fits this trope during her time of regency.
-->'''Yzma:''' It is no concern of mine whether or not your family has... what was it again?\\
'''Peasant:''' Umm... food?\\
'''Yzma:''' HAH! You really should have thought of that before you became peasants!
* CatchPhrase: "It's brilliant, brilliant, ''BRILLIANT''!"
* ChasteToons: She has twin nephews, Zim and Zam, who were voiced by [[TheSuiteLifeOfZackAndCody Dylan and Cole Sprouse]].
* TheComicallySerious: Particularly when she has to deal with Pacha's kids.
* EverybodyKnewAlready: In the TV series, Yzma's "secret lab" isn't very secret.
-->'''Kuzco:''' (''mockingly imitating Yzma'') ''TO THE NOT-SO-SECRET LAB!''
** He knew about it in the first film, too. He intends to go there to be changed back.
-->'''Kuzco:''' Yzma's got that "secret lab".
* EvilChancellor
** She did start out as TheStarscream, but became an EvilChancellor as Kuzco got ''better''.
* EvilIsHammy
* EvilLaugh: She's a ''master'' of these.
* ExcessiveEvilEyeshadow
* FanDisservice: Spelled out below ([[spoiler:until she becomes a cat]]).
** Lampshaded in universe.
-->'''Yzma''': I bet you weren't expecting ''this!'' (''appears to pull up her dress'')
-->'''Pacha and Kuzco''': *sounds of disgust*
-->'''Yzma''': A-HA! (''reveals knife that was taped to her leg beneath her dress'')
-->'''Pacha and Kuzco''': (''relieved'') Ah, yeah, okay.
* TheFashionista: She may be [[PhraseCatcher scary beyond all reason]], but she has a great sense of style. Undoubtedly another trait Kuzco picked up from her.
* IneffectualSympatheticVillain: High on the "ineffectual", low on the "sympathetic". [[TheChewToy But we love her anyway]].
* InkSuitActor: WordOfGod says that her appearance was based on Eartha Kitt herself. They were worried that this would offend her, but it turned out that she actually found it hilarious.
* IWasQuiteALooker: In the original version of the movie this was her motivation, even. And the TV show confirm it: her teenage self is a cutie.
* LaughablyEvil: She's arguably the most comedic character in the film... even though she wants to assassinate an emperor.
* LaughingMad
* LeanAndMean: Taking a cue from characters like Jafar and Maleficent, Yzma is positively spindly - likely as a call back to their designs.
* MadScientist: She has a secret lab, a maniacal laugh and everything. The anachronistic dissonance is played for laughs, of course.
* NeverMyFault: She often blames the failures of her evil plans on Kronk; while he does hold some of the blame, a lot of it usually has to do with the fact that her plans tend to be either a) too convoluted to actually work, b) doomed to fail from the start, c) irrelevant to what she wants to accomplish in the first place, or d) all of the above.
* NiceHat
* NotSoHarmless: At the climax of the movie, she goes from bumbling and ineffectual to threatening enough to send Kuzco and Pacha running for their lives.
* OneWingedAngel: Hilariously parodied when she gets turned into [[spoiler:a fluffy little kitten, doubling this with SealedEvilInATeddyBear.]]
* PaperThinDisguise: Her alter-ego of Principal [[SdrawkcabAlias Amzy]] doesn't really fool Kuzco, but Kronk can never seem to recognize her.
* ParentalSubstitute: She actually ''raised'' Kuzco since he was a baby and thus explaining where most of Kuzco's faults come from; it's implied she was going to pull a TheWomanBehindTheMan act when he was finally crowned and rule the kingdom through him, but his firing her put a stop to that. (It's also implied that she offed Kuzco's parents in order to do so).
* PhraseCatcher: Not an episode of the TV series goes by without calling her "scary beyond all reason".
* PimpedOutDress
* RegentForLife: Attempts this, but when Kuzco fires her she moves to a more direct method and tries to kill him.
* SealedEvilInATeddyBear: Yzma is [[spoiler: transformed into a nearly harmless kitten]] near the end of the movie.
* SlapstickKnowsNoGender
* SmugSnake: All of her plans are either too convoluted to actually work or doomed to fail from the start, and yet she's under the assumption that she's an evil genius.
* SurroundedByIdiots: Or rather one idiot, Kronk, but the effect is the same.
* TreacherousAdvisor: Yzma certainly enjoys throwing her weight around, but the notion of actually usurping Kuzco only seems to hit her after he fires her. Granted, she did raise him (and as above mentioned, may have offed his parents) so perhaps she was tyring to use him as a puppet.
* UnfortunateNames: In the ancient Peruvian language called Quechua, Yzma means "Shit".
* VagueAge: We know she's old, but we don't know ''how'' old.
** According to "The Emperor's New School Spirit" episode of the TV series, she's [[BlatantLies 48]].
* VillainousValor: During the last fight. Not even the risk of dying by falling 100 feet down from a building, or [[spoiler:turning into a small cat]] will stop her.
* [[YouGottaHaveBlueHair You Gotta Have Purple Hair]]: Everyone else has black hair. This is one reason why she is 'scary beyond all reason'
** She actually wears wigs and headpieces... not that that helps in any way.

->'''Voiced by''' Creator/PatrickWarburton

Yzma's current sidekick (she swaps them out every decade or so), who was clearly hired more for muscles than for brains. Despite working for Yzma, he's a chill guy with a sunny demeanor who'll go with her {{Zany Scheme}}s no matter what they require of him. Also a FriendToAllLivingThings, a SupremeChef, and a NiceGuy who struggles with deep theological conundrums. Wait, [[HeelFaceTurn why is he a bad guy again]]?
* AmbiguouslyJewish: Seriously, his last name is Pepikrankenitz.
* AntiVillain: Type IV.
* BerserkButton: ''Don't'' insult his cooking. This is all he could take from Yzma, and caused him to switch from Yzma's side to helping the protagonists.
* BreakoutCharacter: He got his own DirectToVideo sequel.
* BrownNote: "I never liked your spinach puffs! Never!"
* {{Cloudcuckoolander}}
* DeadpanSnarker: High on the 'deadpan', low on the 'snarky'. But he still has some of the funniest lines in the film.
* TheDragon: To Yzma.
* DumbMuscle
* ExtremeDoormat: Him being so docile and accepting is what makes him put up with all of Yzma's constant abuse and Kusco's constant egomania. Of course, after his HeelFaceTurn he stops being a doormat to Yzma.
* [[SuddenlyFluentInGibberish Fluent In Gibberish]]: He talks to squirrels.
* GeniusDitz: While the ditzy part is unquestionable, he knows how to be liked by anyone he meets (another kind of intelligence), is a great cook, has a lot of practical knowledge about things and can survive in the wild all by himself, plus he's fluent in squirrel and HashHouseLingo.
* GentleGiant
* HeelFaceTurn: At the end of the movie.
* HiddenDepths: He gets HashHouseLingo right away.
* IneffectualSympatheticVillain
* ITakeOffenseToThatLastOne: "... and I never liked your spinach puffs!"
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: He just couldn't kill Kuzco at the beginning, and has a HeelFaceTurn by the end of the movie.
* MinionWithAnFInEvil: When Yzma infiltrates Pacha's house by saying they're distant relatives, it seems Kronk actually ''believes'' this. He plays games with the kids, has a blast, and doesn't leave without urging Chicha to not wait until the next family reunion for a get together.
* MinorFlawMajorBreakup: Kronk disowns Yzma after she makes an acerbic comment about his beloved spinach puffs. The insult is so harsh that even Kronk's ''Shoulder Devil'' is disgusted by it.
* PunchClockVillain
* [[RealMenCook Real Men Bake]]
* RealMenWearPink: In addition to baking, some of Kronk's other hobbies include ballet and jump rope.
* RedemptionEqualsDeath: Averted, for comedy. At first it seems that Yzma has killed Kronk by throwing him down a trap door to his death, but he actually emerges from it alive and completely unharmed... in the process, hitting [[ItMakesSenseinContext kitty Yzma.]]
* RightHandHottie
* SmartBall: Kronk typically ends up being the OnlySaneMan in his GoodAngelBadAngel scenes.
* SupremeChef
* TooDumbToLive:
* TopHeavyGuy: He mentions that he's a nightmare to tailor for, being a 66 long, 31 waist -- meaning, his chest is ''five and a half feet around.''
* UnskilledButStrong: Subverted. Kronk lacks some basic common sense and basic intelligence - considering that he cannot follow a conversation for much more than ten seconds - but he is fluent in woodland creature languages (particularly skilled in squirrel), is a SupremeChef, and even has his own moments of genius clarity and realization.

->'''Voiced by''' Wendie Malick

Pacha's frustrated wife. Despite being heavily pregnant, and busy raising two kids, she's a true spitfire who wouldn't think twice about giving the Emperor himself a piece of her mind! A loving mama and loyal wife who, in a pinch, proves she's not to be messed with. Ever.
* ActionMom: To an extent...
* AsYouKnow: Says this to Yzma.
* FryingPanOfDoom
* GoodParents
* HappilyMarried
* HugeGuyTinyGirl: With Pacha.
* NeatFreak: When Pacha reports that Kuzco refused to see him, Chicha gets so frustrated that the only thing she can do to let off steam is go and wash something.
* NiceGirl: She's a loving wife towards Pacha and a loving mother towards her children.
* PregnantBadass: Yes, in a Disney animated film. Played more realistically than usual in that she's ''very'' late in the pregnancy, but pulls this off with the help of her other kids.

-> '''Voiced by:''' Kellyann Kelso (1st film), Creator/JessieFlower (2nd film and series)

Pacha and Chicha's oldest child and only daughter. Chaca gets into fights with her brother, Tipo and is quite talkative.

* GirlishPigtails: She has two pigtails, but isn't exactly girly.
* MotorMouth: Can out talk anyone.
* SiblingTeam: With Tipo when they distract Yzma with their mother.
* TinyGuyHugeGirl: A sibling verion. With Tipo. {{Justified}} since she's older.

-> '''Voiced by:''' Eli Russell Linnetz (1st and 2nd flm), Shane Baumel (series)

Pacha and Chicha's middle child and oldest son. Tipo gets into fights with his sister, Chaca and wants to be just like his dad.

* AscendedExtra: Tipo gets more screentime in the sequel.
* CassandraTruth: "I had a dream that Dad was tied to a log and was careening out of control down a raging river of death!" Turned out he was right.
* SiblingTeam: With Chaca when they distract Yzma with their mother.
* TinyGuyHugeGirl: A sibling verion. With Tipo. {{Justified}} since she's older.

!!Bucky the Squirrel
->'''Voiced by:''' Bob Bergen

He is a kind, happy squirrel who enjoys eating nuts and has a good sense of friendship, good enough to make him hate arrogant people like Kuzco and act cross with them. He is also a great friend of Kronk's and is a tutor on Squirrel Speak in Kuzco Academy.

* BewareTheNiceOnes: Best shown when he first meets Kuzco as a llama. Bucky arrives and amiably offers him an acorn. Kuzco takes the acorn in mock pleasantry but then hits Bucky on the head with it and tells him to hit the road. Right after, Kuzco falls into an area filled with sleeping jaguars. Bucky blows up a balloon animal and threatens to pop it, He does so but it fails to wake up the jaguars until Kuzco screams "Ha!" Later on during
* NiceGuy: Offers an acorn to anyone he meets.
* NonHumanSidekick: Bucky reappears in the sequel as Kronk's "sidekick" of sorts. He is also a part of Kronk's Squirrel Scouts organization.
* TrademarkFavoriteFood: Like any squirrel, Bucky is fond of nuts and acorns.

->'''Voiced by:''' Tracey Ullman

Birdwell is the troop captain her "Chippers" and the LoveInterest of Kronk in the sequel.

* FriendToAllChildren: Which is why she became a troop captain.

->'''Voiced by:'''

A new main character in the spin-off series. She's Kuzco's LoveInterest, which isn't a well kept secret. Malina is a cheerleader and the school council president who also is very smart and prints the Academy's news scroll. She is also a straight-A student, which is apparently a requirement for the cheerleading squad (which is a twist to most stereotypical "airheaded" cheerleaders).

* TheAce: Head cheerleader, school council president, attractive, cheerleader, and overall a nice young lady.
* CharacterizationMarchesOn: Starts out as a borderline CanonSue, but eventually is given flaws; notably, she's made into a perfectionist and occasionally a control freak. And she's noted to be a bit competitive, to the point that even ''Kuzco'' thinks she's scary.
-->'''Malina:''' I ''love'' winning!
* CloserToEarth: Plays this role in nearly every episode, not just to Kuzco but occasionally to Kronk as well. Also the OnlySaneWoman.
* ControlFreak: On a bad day.
* DeathGlare: The "Malina Stare", something that both Kuzco and Kronk are terrified of. It's even accompanied by PsychoStrings.
* HesNotMyBoyfriend: She's constantly annoyed not just by Kuzco constantly calling her his girlfriend, but the fact that others seem to believe it. Though she gets less frustrated with it as the series goes on.
* LiteralSplitPersonality: At one point, Kuzco splits her in dozens of parts of her personality so he could date the part that was in love with him. Naturally, this ended in disaster.
* NotSoAboveItAll: Though usually CloserToEarth, ccasionally she would fall into her own faults and oddball traits, especially later on in the series - for example, one episode deals with her getting increasingly obsessed with getting first place in a meaningless contest to the point of cheating.
* {{Perfectionist}}: Increasingly as the series went on. A few later episodes dealt with how she got in her own way because of this.
* SingleWomanSeeksGoodMan: Malina admits that she does like Kuzco and would ''really'' like him, if it weren't for his arrogance and ego.