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Characters: Cowboy Bebop
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    The Bebop crew 

Spike Spiegel

Voiced by: Koichi Yamadera (JP), Steve Blum (EN)

In the past Spike was a top assassin for the Red Dragon Syndicate, a criminal organization. An unstoppable killer, Spike was practically a One-Man Army, and was only more dangerous when paired with his equally dangerous partner, Vicious. Then something happened. Spike met Vicious' girlfriend, Julia, and Spike and Julia fell in love. (Indeed, one shot that shows Spike's reaction to seeing her hints it might even have been Love at First Sight, at least on his end). Although the details from this time are sketchy, it appears that Vicious soon found out, and the affair not only made Vicious determined to kill Spike, but made him fall out of favor with the Red Dragons as well. Spike decided to leave the Syndicate after one last job, but Vicious gave Julia a deadly order: kill Spike, or be killed herself before she could run. Somehow, Spike faked his death well enough that almost everyone believed he was dead, but Julia didn't leave with him. Instead Spike simply disappeared, and began a life of drifting until meeting Jet and forming their partnership.

In the present Spike is slightly lazy, big eating, easy going sort who has used his skills as an assassin and martial artist to become a bounty hunter. He's the type that always takes life easy except for when the adrenaline kicks in while taking down a bounty. And he certainly doesn't take anything personally or all that seriously... in fact, about the only thing that can spark an emotional reaction from him is the name Julia... still, Spike is going to eventually have to face his past. Not everyone knows or believes that he's dead, including his old mentor Mao Yenrai, and Vicious certainly doesn't believe it, (Vicious firmly believes that he is the only one who can kill Spike, and vice-versa) and still wants a piece of Spike, even as he begins hatching plans to take over the Red Dragons. And somewhere out there, is Julia.

Eventually, Spike's past catches up with him big time. Vicious does confirm that Spike is alive, and it turns into a full on hunt as Vicious tries to take over the Red Dragon Syndicate. Spike and Julia reconcile and plan on running away, but before they can she dies in a shootout with Vicious' men. After saying goodbye to Jet and the crew, Spike decides to go Storming the Castle and cuts a swath through The Syndicate to get to Vicious. The two wound each other, with Vicious dying right away, while Spike lives long enough to see the dawn, walk back downstairs, and whisper "Bang" to the stunned members of the Syndicate before collapsing. It's unclear whether or not he DOES die. Interesting side note: Spike Spiegel dies (MAYBE) at the age of 27, the same age as many legendary rock figures like Robert Johnson, Brian Jones, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison, Kurt Cobain, and many others.
  • Ace Pilot: No one can pilot the Swordfish II better than Spike.
  • Aesop Amnesia: In the movie. Spike's increasing regret over bystanders and bounty heads is undone at the start of the film, which is said to take place late in the series. This seems to have been done so they could fit in some character development. This is possibly justified, in that one of the common interpretations of the movie is that it's a dream Spike is having. As such it would make sense that it would compress all his character development from the series into the movie.
  • Afro Asskicker: A fro of green and lethal moves.
  • Alliterative Name: Spike Spiegel
  • Amazon Chaser: In The Movie, he is this regarding Electra.
    Spike: "I love the kind of woman that can kick my ass."
  • Ambiguously Jewish: Spike has a Yiddish family name, a stereotypically (in the US, anyway) Jewish haircut, and carries an Israeli-made Jericho 941 pistol. When asked about it, the series' creators said he wasn't Jewish and his hair was modeled after the actor Yusaku Matsuda, and they just picked "Spiegel" as his name because they thought it sounded cool.
  • Anti-Hero: Spike's the type of guy who'll help someone in need every now and then even if there's nothing in it for him. He's also not particularly ruthless in his quests to capture his bounty, perfectly willing to capture a bounty head alive, though he does cause serious property damage whenever he goes after them. That said, as a former assassin and a current bounty hunter, he isn't exactly a good guy and he has a darker side to him that comes out when Vicious is around.
  • Awesome McCoolname: Seriously, can the name "Spike Spiegel" get any more awesome? The series' creators deliberately chose this name for Spike simply because they thought it sounded cool.
  • Badass: Undeniably the biggest badass in the Bebop crew.
  • Badass Baritone: He's voiced by Koichi Yamadera and Steve Blum.
  • Badass Longcoat: There seems to be something special about Spike's longcoat, as well. He was seen wearing it often during his Syndicate days, but only dons it to fight Vicious after he leaves. It seems like his way of acknowledging he's fighting a war.
  • Berserk Button: Make sure you never confuse him with his Arch-Enemy, Vicious. If you call him by that name, he'll flip out and open a can of whoop-ass on you and your entire gang.
  • Big Eater: He has a large appetite but unfortunately he and Jet can't afford it.
  • Blood Knight:
    • Nothing makes his face light up more than a decent fight.
    • He doesn't like "small fry" bounties like drug dealers and petty thieves, and only goes after big ones.
  • Bounty Hunter: He's every good at the "hunter" half though he rarely receives any bounty money.
  • Brilliant, but Lazy: Spike fits into this trope. Despite being a lazy, big-eating "lunkhead", Spike has been able to outwit the entire Syndicate, nearly beat Jet in shogi, stay a step ahead of all of his bounties, and think his way out of every situation.
  • Broken Ace: He's very skilled, and he's usually calm and confident—until his Dark and Troubled Past comes up.
  • Bruce Lee Clone: Spike is a big fan of Mr. Lee, practicing Jeet Kune Do and his philosophy.
  • But Now I Must Go: He leaves the Bebop one final time (much to Faye's dismay) to confront his past and Vicious, all the while knowing that he may not come back.
  • Byronic Hero
  • Character Development:
    • Cares more and more about innocent bystanders and collateral casualties as the series goes on. The biggest catalysts were Rocco and Gren.
    • Redoes the entire development, accelerated, in The Movie, where he goes from perfectly willing to let a grandma die, to suicide rushing Vincent in a last ditch effort to save Mars from the nano plague.
  • Child Hater: Spike claims he does not like kids (or pets) in the second episode. Guess who ends up living on the same ship as him? This is Lampshaded after Faye and Ed join the crew.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Like any self-respecting jeet kun do practioner, Spike follows the philosophy of 'whatever works'.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Spike used to be in the Red Dragon Syndicate and lots of bad things happened during that time. Falling out with Vicious, turbulent relationship with Juilia, faking his own death to get out.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Often speaks in dry and tired wit.
  • Death Seeker: Spike becomes one after Julia's death. He then immediately decides to storm the Red Dragon fortress in order to kill Vicious in a Suicide Mission.
    Spike: "I'm not going there to die... I'm going to find out if I'm really alive."
  • Destructive Savior: Every time he tries to bring in a bounty buildings are destroyed. In one episode, Jet says that the reason they never see any bounty money is that it's drained in paying for damages.
  • Determinator: He doesn't give up on bounties or his score with Vicious, no matter how long it takes or how many armed men stand in his way or how injuried he becomes.
  • Electronic Eye: One of his eyes is artificial and a slightly different color.
  • Face Death with Dignity: In "Wild Horses", he was told that his deactivated ship is caught in Earth's gravitational pull and will burn up in the atmosphere in about five minutes. His only reaction was to fire up a cigarette and tell Jet where he kept the booze that he wants Jet to inherit. However, Spike is saved in the nick of time.
  • Heartbroken Badass: He lost Julia. Even more so after he loses her a second time, permanently this time.
  • I Let Gwen Stacy Die: After Julia dies in the finale.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills: Is remarkably proficient at shooting people right between the eyes.
  • Indy Ploy: Thinking on his feet is definitely one of Spike's strong suits. Just look at his plan in "Heavy Metal Queen," which involved him going into space without a suit.
  • It's Not You, It's My Enemies: Why he left Julia.
  • I Will Find You: Spike's major quest throughout the anime is to reunite with Julia again.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold
  • Jigsaw Puzzle Plot: His past is told in such a fashion; snatches of conversation, flashbacks, etc.
  • The Lancer
  • Lightning Bruiser: Spike, the best fighter in the Bebop crew, is this compared to his crew members and most of the enemies he encounters. Despite Jet's larger build and Faye's leaner figure, Spike is the strongest, fastest and toughest person in the crew. Throughout the series, Spike demonstrates his Jeet Kune Do skills as well as being able to take on whole groups of armed men all the while enduring staggering amounts of pain.
  • Loveable Rogue: Ant-hero Bounty hunter (not a criminal) who makes a surprising amount of friends.
  • Love Redeems: If not for Julia, he would have likely ended up just like Vicious.
  • Made of Iron: During one episode he is; shot, stabbed, sliced, thrown through a stained glass window and falls at least four stories down to a hard cobblestone street. He lives.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Tall, muscular, and certainly easy on the eyes. He's had a Shirtless Scene or two.
  • Nominal Hero: Spike has occasionally shown moments of apathy and outright disregard for other people, caring only for his mission or reward. "Ballad of Fallen Angels" shows Spike unhesitatingly shooting the head of the man who had Faye at gunpoint, making it seem as if he cared more about killing him than saving Faye. Even then he only agreed to save her because he had his own reasons and happened to be in the same place. The first scene from The Movie also makes it clear that he cares little about human casualties if it means stopping a bounty.
    Spike: "Well that's a real shame but we're not cops and we're not from some charity organization. Sorry lady but we don't protect or serve. This is strictly business."
  • Not Afraid to Die: One of Spike's defining character traits is how blasé he is about the prospect of dying. He states several times that he's already died and is just watching a bad dream until he's ready to wake up and face the reality that he's dead. Encountering Tongpu temporarily drives the cool away from him, but in all other instances (including in several episodes and The Movie that took place chronologically later) Spike never seems afraid of death. Depending on how you interpret the ending, the last minutes of the series shows the crowning example.
  • One-Man Army: Episodes 5, 11 and 26 show him going up against large numbers of armed men and coming out victorious.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: The red to Jet and Vicious' blue; it's an odd case because he less prone to shouting and visible shows of emotion but he's more reckless.
  • Running Gag: Several times he pulls out a cigarette (or already has one lit), only to be told or see a sign that says "No smoking". Depending on the episode, he either ignores it or spits the cigarette out, irritated.
  • Smoking Is Cool: Probably the most famous example in anime. He's even the current trope image.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: With Julia; the Red Dragon Syndicate is what separated them.
  • Tragic Hero: A man with a tragic past that may or may not have died coming to terms with that past after losing his true love.
  • Tranquil Fury: His overall reaction when storming Red Dragon Crime Syndicate base, because of Julia's death. He moves slowly, doesn't say anything, and yet the fury is clear in his actions.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: With Faye. Although it appears one-sided on her part, Word of God once stated "Spike may have feelings for Faye, he's just not one to outwardly express them."
  • We Used to Be Friends: He and Vicious used to be Bash Brothers.
  • Your Cheating Heart: With Julia behind Vicious' back.

Jet Black

"I started wailing the blues when the doctor whacked my bottom on the day I was born."
Voiced by: Unshō Ishizuka (JP), Beau Billingslea (EN)

An ex cop who was known as the "Black Dog" during his time as an officer because of his stubbornness and relentlessness in chasing down suspects. During his days as a cop Jet refused to go on the take or play the game until this finally got him ambushed by a syndicate, and his own partner, resulting in a wound that cost him his arm and made him turn in his badge. Between having been walked out on by his lover Alissa sometime earlier and his wound, Jet decided it was time to move on and try his luck in other parts of the solar system, leading him to purchase the Bebop, (and name it after his longtime love of jazz music) become a freelance bounty hunter and become partners with Spike.

By far the most old-fashioned, levelheaded, and responsible member of the Bebop crew, as well as the conscience of the group. Tends to appear gruff, (and his height, muscular appearance and beard only add to the impression) but is quite the softy underneath with a surprising number of cultured habits, (including raising bonsai trees, listening to jazz/blues music, cooking, reading the works of 17th/18th century literature, etc) and has a tendency to do the right thing in all circumstances. He can be too old-fashioned and controlling though, a fact which caused Elisa to leave him and sometimes makes him less than popular with the rest of the Bebop crew.
  • Anti-Hero: He has a temper and a foul mouth, but he's more heroic than the others.
  • Artificial Limbs: His left arm is robotic.
  • Awesome McCoolname: Jet Black is a good name for a bounty hunter.
  • Badass: Similar to Spike as a bounty hunter but his stature is more intimidating.
  • The Big Guy: He's the biggest and he has a robotic arm.
  • Bounty Hunter: He'll go after anybody, big or small, to pay the bills.
  • The Captain: As he likes to remind the rest of the crew, he is the ship's captain, and thus the one in charge. Spike and Faye don't care.
  • Cultured Badass
  • Cultured Warrior: Loves classic literature, tending bonsai, and jazz. Also is the ship's cook. The latter would be the least favored by the ship's crew. Mostly due to the lack of important ingredients or improvisation on his part.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Not as much as Spike or Faye, but he gets a few one-liners in.
  • Determinator: He says so himself.
  • Genius Bruiser
  • Gentle Giant: As big and gruff as he looks, he's a Nice Guy underneath.
  • Hidden Depths: Explored in "Ganymede Elegy" where he reflects on his past as a cop.
  • Honor Before Reason: He once told Faye that "men live by iron codes of honor." When she asked if he truly believed that he replied, "I'm trying real hard."
  • Knight in Sour Armor: He's an honest cop who was burned and turned cynical.
  • The Last DJ: Jet Black's refusal to turn Dirty Cop or ease up on The Syndicates running Ganymede resulted in him being ambushed and nearly killed. At the hands of his own partner, who was working with The Syndicate, no less.
  • The Leader: The authority figure on the Bebop is Jet; the level headed type.
  • May-December Romance: Spike and Faye say he has a crush Meifa. He insists it's a Big Brother Instinct thing.
  • Mighty Glacier: He's big and strong and tough but slower than his crewmates.
  • Mr. Fixit: Jet is the only one who bothers to do any maintenance on the ships.
  • My Greatest Failure: The incident that cost him his left arm. He failed to realize his partner was in league with the Syndicate and walked right into a trap.
  • New Old Flame: Elisa. She and Jet were a couple at some point pre-series.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Calls out Spike and Faye on their reckless behavior and wonders why he bothers with them, but lets them back in every time.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: The blue to Spike's red; it's an odd case in that despite his louder personality he's more levelheaded and cautious than Spike.
  • Red Baron: "The Black Dog".
  • The Reliable One: He's the one that keeps the Bebop running and its crew fed.
  • Renaissance Man: An ex-detective who knows mechanics, cooking, cultivates bonsai trees, is a decent Shogi player, is knowledgeable about hacking and cyberwarfare (although nowhere as good as Ed or Ein), apparently knows something about geology, and is a fan of both several music genres and classic literature (both eastern and western). He's also not a bad starship pilot on top of it.
  • Sore Loser: In the movie, he's playing shogi with Spike and spends an extremely long time between moves planning ahead. Spike, by contrast, has no apparent strategy and moves instantly and unpredictably. Without admitting that he doesn't know what to do about the move Spike just made, he starts bitching about Spike's lack of planning until Ein steps in to save him.
  • The Stoic: He's calm and in controlled; like a Zen Survivor.
  • Straight Man: Comedy results from his frustration to Spike and Faye and Ed's actions.
  • Team Chef: Not a terribly good one (given the ingredients he's forced to work with), but he's still the Bebop's cook because Spike, Faye and Ed definitively can't.
  • Team Dad: Most obvious in his interactions with Ed, where he often takes on a distinctly more parental tone than his usual gruff demeanour. The story he tells her at the beginning of Speak Like a Child is the most obvious example, but it crops up in more subtle ways throughout the show.
  • Younger than They Look: He's only 36, but has the appearance (and demeanor) of someone well into his forties. This is acknowledged in one episode.

Faye Valentine

"Survival of the fittest is the law of nature. We deceive or we are deceived. Thus, we flourish or perish."
Voiced by: Megumi Hayashibara (JP), Wendee Lee (EN)

The first person to join Spike and Jet on the Bebop (unless we're counting Ein), Faye is many things. For starters she's a con artist, selfish, impulsive, self-centered, rude and manipulative. She's also lonely, heartbroken, wounded, and desperately searching for her place in the universe. Spike and Jet would first encounter Faye when she was working as part of a smuggling operation at a casino, posing as a dealer. Her job was to make it look legit when her contact would slide her a very special poker chip, but unfortunately there was a mix up when she mistook Spike for her contact, and hilarity quickly ensued. Sometime later in a different episode Faye would become a permanent part of the Bebop crew, despite much grumbling from both Spike and Jet.

Faye always approaches the world from an angle: she believes the world and people are out to hurt, use and exploit you, so it's best if you do it to them first. Anything is fair game to be used to get an advantage over people, include cunning, using the trust of others, her sexy good looks, and when all else fails, a ship loaded with machine guns and missiles. Her exact background is mysterious, and when pressed for answers about it she simply throws out one story after another, each more improbable than the last. Despite her usual indirect and sneaky methods, Faye is quite a competent pilot, markswoman, and even her punch packs a wallop despite her slim frame. When not taking down bounties, she tends to waste all her money gambling in an effort to get rich and pay off the ridiculously large debts that she has, which is just as mysterious as anything else about her past.

Eventually it turns out that Faye is actually from the 20th century. In her late teens she barely survived the Gate accident that made the earth nearly uninhabitable and was cryogenically frozen until being revived more than 50 years later. After waking up she was tricked into assuming the massive debts (which, she admits, were little more than a drop in the bucket compared to her own truly massive health-care bill) of her supposed savior, a con man she had begun to fall for. It also turns out she has a touch of amnesia about her history prior to the accident, which she eventually overcomes and goes to find her home, only to find that there's nothing left of it. By the series end, she is the only member of the crew to remain with Jet on the Bebop.
  • Con Woman: She makes ends meet by tricking them out of other people. Like what happened to her when she woke up in the current time period.
  • Heartbroken Badass: She fell in love with a con artist who faked his own death and tricked her into assuming the massive debt of the man who woke her.
  • Hello, Nurse!: She often turns heads in a new area.
  • Hidden Depths: A plucky schoolgirl was her past and she's nicer than she let's on.
  • Hidden Heart of Gold: Beneath the scheming and bitterness there's a Nice Girl.
  • Human Popsicle: She spent decades frozen after being involved in an accident.
  • In Harm's Way: Natch. At one point, she gleefully prepares to fight against a pack of would be rapists by asking for some time to put her gloves on. A brawl's no reason to ruin a perfectly good manicure. Granted, she was drunk at the time, but still.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills: When Faye is serious, she's a great shot that can disarm a whole room of men in a few seconds.
  • I Work Alone: Or so she wants to think; she's actually desparate for companionship.
  • Mukokuseki: While the entire cast fits this (seriously, claim Spike is Jewish in a fan forum and stand back), Faye is the most prominent. Early on as part of a con she claims to be Roma, an ethnic group from Europe and the Middle East. Later on, however, it's revealed that she's actually from Singapore. These two ethnic groups do not generally look alike, but in anime it's fair game.
  • Ms. Fanservice: A Stripperific Femme Fatale.
  • Multiple Choice Past: At first. One of Faye's early lies about herself is that she's Roma. The place she thinks might be her home is apparently Singapore, given the Merlion statue
  • Older Than She Looks: Was born over 70 years ago, though she's biologically only 23 but with her jaded, been-there-done-that attitude and (occasional) sophistication she probably seems closer to 30.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: The crooked doctor who awakened her claims to have given her a false name, but he may have just been a Jerk. For all we know Faye Valentine may be her real name since two 50 year old packages addressed to her are delivered to the Bebop (COD, no less) and a eldery woman who claims to be a high school classmate addresses her as Faye.
  • Plucky Girl: Her younger self. She made a cheer to her future self on camera complete with pompoms.
  • Pretty Freeloaders: Subverted. Jet gives her a bill. Then double subverted because she doesn't pay it.
  • Quest for Identity: She wants to learn about her real identity and past.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: The blue to Ed's red.

Edward Wong Hau Pepelu Tivrusky IV, a.k.a. "Radical Edward", a.k.a Françoise Appledelhi

"Ed will introduce Ed. Full name - Edward Wong Hau Pepelu Tivrusky the 4th. ... Ed made up that name for Ed, isn't it cool?"
Voiced by: Aoi Tada (JP), Melissa Fahn (EN)

Oh Ed, Ed, Ed... where to even start with Ed? Ed is probably the world's foremost hacker, and is not shy about using her talents to cause mischief. A 13 year old demented genius, Ed was living alone on Earth and occasionally being hunted by the police when she (he?...) first encountered the Bebop crew. The crew was chasing a bounty in a case where someone was believed to have hacked into an old Kill Sat and started using it to carve designs into the planet. Naturally, Ed was the prime suspect, but since Ed was aware of the Bebop crew and was a fan of theirs, (oddly enough, since the crew manages to blow every bounty and live in Perpetual Poverty because of it) she (he?...) let them in on a secret: the real perpetrator was the satellite itself, whose program had a degree of awareness, a fact that Ed had recently discovered. In return for giving them this information and helping them deal with the rogue satellite, Ed only asked to become a member of the Bebop crew, a proposition Faye agreed to without telling anyone and later tried to back out on. Unfortunately for Faye, hacking the Bebop's computer, controlling it by remote, and getting it to land where she wants it, is not exactly a difficult task for Ed.

After this Ed's legendary computer skills would be at the disposal of the Bebop crew, and it would come in handy in several cases. Ed would also get her day in the limelight during the show's Mushroom Samba episode. This would continue until Ed and Faye simultaneously begin closing in on chasing down their pasts, in Ed's case in part through Faye's encouragement that finding the place where you belong is the best thing a person can do. To that end Ed posts a fake bounty on her ditzy father who good-naturedly and absentmindedly abandoned her years before. (Well, maybe more like left her off with someone and half forgot that she ever existed). The two briefly reunite, but Ed hesitates at joining him, and good old dad starts running off again. Quite possibly realizing that the place where she belongs is neither with dad nor aboard the Bebop, Ed leaves both, wandering off into the sunset accompanied only by Ein.
  • Ambiguously Brown: Given her father's name, it's implied she might be Turkish.
  • Bifauxnen: To the point that when she finally dresses like a girl, she looks like she's crossdressing.
  • A Boy and His X: Ed and Ein bond instantly and are inseparable thereafter.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: A truly odd child with spectacular hacking skills.
  • But Now I Must Go: Leaves the Bepop in the Finale to look for a new home.
  • Cheerful Child: Perpetually upbeat in contrast to the jaded adults on the ship.
  • Cloud Cuckoolander: She pretends to be a dog, she says random things, and carves smiley faces on land masses.

Ein

Encountered in the second episode, Ein is a "data dog" that was illegally researched and experimented on. Initially Ein was just supposed to be a tool to catch the episode's bounty, who had stolen Ein, but eventually, much to Spike's chagrin, Jet and Spike wound up keeping the dog on after things didn't quite work out in catching the bounty.
Exactly what a data dog is never gets explained, but Ein certainly has vastly greater than normal intelligence for a dog. (It's strongly hinted that Ein has a full understanding of the languages and world around him, and may in fact be the smartest member of the crew). Ein gradually becomes closest to and friendliest with Ed, with the two sharing a number of adventures (especially in the Mushroom Samba episode) before leaving together.

    Recurring characters 

Vicious

Voiced by: Norio Wakamoto (JP), Skip Stellrecht (EN)

A man dressed entirely in black, who seems to have little emotion and to care about nothing. A walking tide of destruction and death. A skilled and remorseless killer who will not hesitate to snuff out anyone who gets in his way. In short, Vicious is a bad motherfucker, and seriously bad news for anyone who happens to be within a mile of him.

As with everything else from Spike's past, not much is ultimately known about Vicious. He and Spike were partners, and top hitmen for the Red Dragon Syndicate, and at this time Vicious was already involved with Julia. Spike and Julia met, and soon fell in love. A few scenes seen in closing credits of the episodes hint that Spike and Julia carried out an affair in secret for some time before Vicious found out. Where a normal man might have been upset, Vicious calmly set Spike up to be killed in an ambush, and, as a backup, instructed Julia to kill Spike if he survived to try to run away with her, or be killed herself. Julia never went to the meeting however, and Spike faked his own death, leaving Vicious to stew and continue to plot both vengeance and a ruthless climb to the top of the Red Dragons.

For a short time after Spike's faked death, Vicious left the Syndicate and served in a war on Titan (one of Saturn's moons), operating there as The Mole, spying on the side he was ostensibly fighting for. His motives for doing this are still unknown. When it was discovered that there was a spy operating in the ranks, Vicious pinned the blame on Gren, a younger soldier who hero worshiped him. After the end of the war Vicious rejoined the Red Dragons and quickly climbed the ranks, gaining a large following among the Syndicate's lower members. When the opportunity presented itself, Vicious killed Spike's former mentor Mao and used that and a shameful desecration of Mao's body to lure Spike out, proving that his old rival was still alive after all. The encounter left both men wounded, but settled nothing.

Increasingly aware of Vicious' treacherous nature and ambition, the Syndicate elders declared that he would not be allowed to take over the Red Dragons. So Vicious responded by launching a coup d'etat. He would have been happy if it worked, but expected it to fail. He allows himself not only to be caught red handed making an assassination attempt on the elders, but also to be sentenced to execution, all so he can stack the execution squad with his own men. They free him and give Vicious the chance to assassinate the Syndicate elders for real, and his success leaves him as the new leader. With the Red Dragon under his control, Vicious could finally redouble his efforts to kill Spike and Julia, who finally reunited. One of his thugs shoots and kills Julia, resulting in Spike returning and raiding Red Dragon's HQ for a final confrontation. The two mortally wound each other in a one-on-one fight, with Vicious falling dead from a gunshot wound from Spike, while Spike himself slowly dies (maybe) from a stomach wound inflicted by Vicious' sword, finally collapsing in front of the shocked remaining syndicate members.

Julia

"I was supposed to kill you. It was all set up. If I had, I would have been free."
Voiced by: Gara Takashima (JP), Mary Elizabeth McGlynn (EN)

Spike's lost love. Relatively little is known about Julia, and since she has very little screen time (aside from flashbacks, she only appears in sections of 2 episodes), and dies before the end of the second episode so the exact details on her history, personality and life are sketchy. From the scenes she's in we can see that she knows how to drive a car during a Car Chase, she can shoot a mook (albeit not nearly as smoothly as most of the main characters) and she's fairly smart: she gets how Vicious planted the transmitter on Gren immediately, for example. She's also quite loyal to Spike, when presented with the Sadistic Choice she chose to Take a Third Option and be hunted by Vicious rather than kill Spike.

Otherwise, it's possible to guess from flashback sequences that Julia was probably unhappy with Vicious for awhile before she and Spike began their affair. The flashback scene of their first meeting (which only lasts a couple of seconds) seems to show Spike immediately falling for Julia, however no similar reaction is seen from her. Things began to change when a wounded and bloody Spike collapsed almost right in front of her door one night after doing a bit of syndicate "business". Either as she nursed him back to health or shortly afterward, Julia began to reciprocate Spike's feelings and the two began having an affair. However, Vicious found out and this brought the situation to a head. Spike begged Julia to run away with him after performing one last job for the Syndicate, but Julia was reluctant, apparently fearing that the Red Dragon wouldn't really let Spike go and that Vicious would hunt them. After Spike leaves Julia is then confronted by Vicious, who presents her with the Sadistic Choice mentioned above. Instead, with the help of at least some members of the Red Dragons (Shin can be heard leaving a message on her machine about Vicious' planned coup at the very start of episode 25), Julia escaped and went on the run.

In episode 25 we see Julia outside of a flashback for the first time. In the wake of Vicious' attempted coup, she, like others, is being hunted by the Elders for having ever had ties to Vicious. Faye, separated from the rest of the team, spots Julia leading a group of thugs on a car chase and intervenes to help Julia. The two talk for a little while, and Julia recognizes that Faye is one of Spike's partners. Julia gives Faye a discreet message for Spike, to have him meet her at the same cemetery where they were supposed to meet before running away years earlier. When the two meet they reconcile and decide to attempt to run away again. However they decide to stop by Annie's place to seek help from their old friend, only to find Annie wounded and on the brink of death. When Vicious' Mooks thugs surround the building the two attempt to fight their way past on the rooftops, but Julia is shot by a mook in the back. Her dying words are "It's all just a dream." Spike tries to comfort her by agreeing, and then Julia dies. Her death prompts Spike to go settle things with Vicious once and for all.

Grencia "Gren" Mars Elijah Guo Eckener

"You said that you didn't need comrades, but I'm attached to that word... to the point of tears..."
Voiced by: Kenyuu Horiuchi (JP), Michael Gregory (EN)

Subject of the two-part episode "Jupiter Jazz." Gren fought alongside Vicious on Titan, and considered him a close comrade. As one might expect, this was an unfortunate error in judgment on Gren's part. Spike and Faye encounter him on Jupiter's moon Callisto, where he plays saxophone in a bar called the Rester House.

Vicious took advantage of Gren's friendship to frame him for espionage during the war on Titan, resulting in Gren being sent to prison. While incarcerated, he developed insomnia, and was used as a test subject for an experimental drug which severely imbalanced his hormones, causing him to develop breasts.

Gren posed as a Red-Eye dealer in order to find and confront Vicious, which he did while Spike was on Callisto searching for signs of Julia. The resulting confrontation left Gren with mortal injuries, and he died in transit to Titan after asking Spike to help him return there as his last wish.

Laughing Bull

"Do not fear death. Death is always at our side. When we show fear, it jumps at us faster than light, but if we do not show fear, it casts its eye upon us gently and then guides us into infinity..."
Voiced by: Takehiro Koyama (JP), Michael Gregory (EN)

A nomadic shaman on Mars, apparently of Native American descent. Spike and Jet (or "Swimming Bird" and "Running Rock") sometimes go to him for cryptic advice.

Judy and Punch

"Hola, amigos! How y'all doing?"
Voiced by: Miki Nagasawa and Tsutomu Tareki (JP), Lia Sargent and Paul St Peter (EN)

The hosts of the TV show "Big Shots", which gives information about criminals to bounty hunters.

  • Big "WHAT?!": From Judy, when Big Shots is cancelled.
  • Kent Brockman News: Their show often pops up to inform the viewer (and occasionally the Bebop crew) about the current episode's bounty.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Judy, In-Universe.
  • Nice Character, Mean Actor: When the show is cancelled Judy drops all of her cowgirl, ditzy personality, and reveals her true nature.
    • On the flip side, the actor who plays Punch is a softspoken nice guy who takes in his mother even after losing his job.
  • Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: Deliberately with Punch in the English dub.
  • Shoo Out the Clowns: Much like Ed and Ein. Near the shows end, Big Shots is cancelled so the comical segment won't conflict with the permanently serious tone.
  • Stripperific: Judy's not wearing a shirt under her coat.

    Miscellaneous 

Tongpu a.k.a. Mad Pierrot

"Let's party!"
Voiced by: Banjō Ginga (JP), Kirk Thornton (EN)

A one-shot character, the Mad Pierrot is a ruthless Serial Killer who chases down Spike and duels with him in an abandoned amusement park. What he is exactly is only implied, as Spike interrupts the answer and says he doesn't want to know. This just makes the character even more unsettling.

  • Ax-Crazy
  • Acrofatic: He floats.
  • Badass: One of the few people in the series who's ever one-upped Spike in a fight.
  • Black Cloak
  • Bloodbath Villain Origin: Murdered the entire staff of the facility where he was experimented on. Of this we see nothing - just the after-effects, but it's enough.
  • Evil Laugh
  • Gone Horribly Wrong: It's not completely clear what his purpose was supposed to be, but it probably wasn't murdering every single person he encountered.
  • He Knows Too Much: Will relentlessly hunt down and kill anyone who sees his face.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Stabbed by Spike with the same knife he threw at him at the beginning of his episode. The pain he has no protection against causes him to break down and be crushed by one of the park's robots.
  • Immune to Bullets: It seems his body has some sort of Energy Shield that protects him from gunfire. However, a sufficiently slow projectile - such as the knife Spike tosses at him - will not be stopped.
  • Implacable Man: The episode makes very clear that luck was the main factor for Spike being able to defeat him.
  • Lightning Bruiser
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: How exactly Tongpu manages all of his clearly superhuman exploits is never elaborated upon, and whatever "explanation" is given only raises more questions. Possibilities seem to include psychic powers, experimental technology, and simply being insanely (pun intended) badass.
  • Monster Clown
  • More Dakka: He stores rocket launchers in his coat.
  • My Name Is Not Shazam: While translates to "Mad Pierrot", the French phrase "Pierrot Le Fou" only refers to the title of the episode.
  • Names to Run Away From Really Fast
  • Nigh Invulnerable: He can be knocked around, but not injured. In fact, pain is so alien to him he has a total breakdown when he finally experiences it.
  • Playing with Syringes: He's the result.
  • Pre Ass Kicking One Liner: The quote above.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: The experiments done to him had the side effect of making his mind regress to that of a child. A nigh-unstoppable child superhumanly gifted at killing things.
    Jet: There is nothing as both pure and cruel as a child...
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning
  • Shout-Out: His entire session was one for Batman: The Animated Series so naturally he's a combination of several classic Batman villains. He has the body shape and similar dress of the Penguin, the back story (of being a prisoner subjected to painful experimentation resulting in his super strength) of Bane, and the vicious psychopathy of the Joker. The final confrontation even takes place in an amusement park, one of Joker's favorite places to slug it out with ol' Batsy.
  • Slasher Smile: So wide and deranged you can hear his teeth grinding.
  • Baton Gun
  • Villainous Breakdown: An epic one. When Spike finally manages to get past his defenses and injure him, his mind regresses as far as possible and he's reduced to a sobbing child crying for his mommy.
  • Weaksauce Weakness: He's afraid of cats because one was in the room where he was subjected to painful experimentation, though it did nothing but watch. In his first battle with Spike, a cat distracts him enough for Spike to make his getaway. Said cat in the experiments also had heterochromia, like Spike - a split second's light allowing a glimpse of Spike's eyes is enough to make Tongpu pause for a crucial second.
  • Walking Armory: He has a ridiculous number of weapons hidden in his coat.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: His backstory and death put him in this territory.

Vincent Volaju

"No one can draw a line between sane and insane."
Voiced by: Tsutomu Isobe (JP), Daran Norris (EN)

The main antagonist of the Cowboy Bebop movie, Knockin' on Heaven's Door, he's apparently a terrorist hellbent on causing as much destruction as possible, and holds the highest bounty in recorded history on his head (300,000,000 wulongs). As it turns out, he's the sole survivor of a series of experiments during the Titan War, and plans to release the nanomachines which transformed him into a Super Soldier across the world, which would kill everyone on Mars who lacks immunity (that is to say 99.999%).

Electra Ovilo

"Let's go... together."
Voiced by: Ai Kobayashi (JP), Jennifer Hale (EN)

A corporate soldier who has some unknown past connections with Vincent. They were lovers, and she is the only one who carries the cure to the nanomachines he wishes to unleash upon Mars. Seeing as how she was the only one who cared for him, she feels she must help him, and, later, puts him out of his misery.
  • Action Girl
  • Bifauxnen
  • Deadpan Snarker: To a degree:
    Spike: Love the toreador thing. Black pants, red jacket. Nice look.
    Electra: The jumpsuit does nothing for you.
  • Love Martyr: To Vincent. Almost played literally when she wants herself and Vincent to die together, but Vincent falters at the last moment and allows her to kill him.
  • Male Gaze: Right before and during her brief fight with spike, the camera took more than one lingering shot of her rather shapely ass. There was also at least one Between My Legs shot during said fight.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: She and Vincent have this relationship.

The Scorpion

Technically, he could have been listed under the recurring characters section if it wasn't for the fact that he never appeared in the show even once, nor was he ever mentioned. Confused yet?

The Scorpion is a character from the Alternate Continuity Spin-Off manga, Cowboy Bebop: Shooting Star. As a child, he was so gifted that he attracted the attention of the Dragon Head Syndicate (the manga's equivalent to the show's "Red Dragon" Syndicate). He was promptly abducted, partially-brainwashed, and turned into one of their commanders. He routinely crosses paths with the Bebop crew and is Shooting Star's only recurring named villain.

  • Affably Evil
  • Canon Foreigner: Scorpion is pretty obviously Vicious's stand-in since the latter is absent from this continuity. Unless Vicious was the "someone" below...
  • Child Prodigy
  • The Dragon: To someone within the syndicate who wanted to personally kill Spike; presumably, this "someone" was meant to be Vicious, but since Shooting Star takes place in an Alternate Continuity, it could have just as easily been someone else from the show or even a brand new character. The series was cancelled before their identity could be revealed.
  • Dragon-in-Chief: By virtue of the Big Bad never showing up before cancellation.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Although he can be legitimately friendly and hospitable, he can also be extremely petty and passive-aggressive if he feels like it.
  • The Plot Reaper: His death was probably to make way for the "Someone" in the syndicate to enter the story, but instead the series was cancelled before that "Someone" could show up. Ironically, this means that Scorpion was the only recurring plot line that actually got resolved before Shooting Star was cancelled.
  • Slasher Smile
  • Wicked Cultured

Corrector YuiCharacters/AnimeCrescent Moon

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