"I'm not a big, fat panda. I'm THE big, fat panda."
Voiced by: Jack Black (Films) Mick Wingert (TV Series)
A Giant Panda with a big heart, he is a major kung fu fanatic and runs a noodle shop with his father (who is a goose). To the surprise of everyone, he is selected by Master Oogway to be the Dragon Warrior destined to defend the Valley of Peace from danger, and now trains under Master Shifu and alongside his idols, the Furious Five.
Accidental Athlete: In the first movie, when he climbed several feet off the kitchen floor and performed a perfect split just to get Monkey's cookies off the top shelf. When he sees Shifu watching him, Po's first words are "Don't tell Monkey."
Acrofatic: After his training. Though he can still tire after too long and struggles with over-long staircases.
Adorkable: Look no further than when he first entered the Jade Palace and spent the next minute or two just gawking to himself over the cool kung fu artifacts. Pandaing To The Audience indeed.
All-Loving Hero: He does not hate anybody. Not even Shen, who attacked Po's village, and killed his mother and his people. He still forgave him and told him to let go of the past.
Badass Boast: "I'm not a big fat panda. I'm THE big fat panda!" He also tries to deliver one to Shen, but he's too far away for the sound to reach him.
Memetic Badass: In-universe, the Dragon Warrior is the ultimate kung-fu master and a paragon of badassery, as well as one in harmony with the energy of the universe. Po eventually grows into that hype.
Charles Atlas Superpower: It's revealed in "Oogway's Ghost" that Po relies the most on the frequent training sessions to keep his skills sharp out of the group. Going for even a few days without the proper level of taxation leaves him nigh useless in battle.
Comfort Food: Po has a psychological dependence on eating when he's upset, but he manages to conquer it to some degree in the first film.
Confusion Fu: Because he invented his own kung fu style instead of learning one of the others, he has an advantage against more seasoned fighters like Tai Lung who don't know what to expect from him. It helps that, half the time, he appears to be goofing off more than actually fighting.
Disappeared Dad: His biological father. Who actually turns out to be alive.
Ditzy Genius: Has figured out advanced Kung Fu techniques by himself without being shown while capable of inventing new ones on his own, has an encyclopedic knowledge of kung fu history and lore, is a competent and imaginative strategist, and is a Supreme Chef to boot. Discovers inner peace three days after being told what it is and able to do the seemingly impossible with it, and has an excellent grasp of kung fu philosophy. And the end credits for the second movie show that he didn't buy his near-identical action figues of the Furious Five- he carved them by himself when he was just a kid. For all that though, he's pretty childish, occasionally clumsy, easily excited and often lacks common sense.
Doorstop Baby: His adoptive father found him in a radish box from the vegetable order delivered to him. He waited for someone to come by, but when no one came, he adopted Po.
Drives Like Crazy: On a cart in Gongmen City chasing down the Wolf Boss in Kung Fu Panda 2.
Elephant in the Living Room: The question of why a panda has a goose for a father is completely ignored by all of the characters, including Po himself. However, this is addressed in the second film.
Happily Adopted: Even after learning the truth about his biological family, he still accepts Mr. Ping as his father.
Hard Work Hardly Works: Averted. While Po has a great deal of natural talent and can learn very quickly under the right circumstances while creating powerful innovations, he still has to rely extensively on the Five in combat (although he is still an asset to them as well), and Tigress in particular is implied to be a much more formidable combatant.
Leitmotif: "Panda Po" - a humble melody usually played with strings. Introduced in the first movie, and used everywhere in the second.
Last of His Kind: Po is the only (known) panda to have survived an attempted genocide orchestrated by Shen.
Lightning Bruiser: He's pretty nimble for a guy his size while also hitting about as hard as you'd expect.
Like Father, Like Son: Po and Mr. Ping share several personality quirks, most notably that when embarrassed, they turn sideways and nervously peek towards those looking at them.
The Load: In Kung Fu Panda 2 he is a literal example. He is a capable kung fu master and can direct the members of the Furious Five in battle fairly well. However his mobility is so poor that he is often literally thrown and carried around by his much quicker comrades.
Made of Iron: Because of his fat, he can deflect blows quite easily. Even Tai Lung's nerve strike attack. As a result, when he begins to lose weight in KFP2 (as noted by his father), he no longer has this resistance (as the Wolf Boss is able to hurt him with a strike to the belly).
Meaningful Name: Word of God says his full name is "Po Ping" (寶平, bǎopíng), which means "precious peace". In the second one, his full full name is revealed to be Xiao Po Ping, which in this context, roughly translates to "little precious peace".
Mentor's New Hope: Shifu's, though the mentor certainly didn't see it that way (at first).
Mighty Glacier: With respect to the other Furious Five. He's not slow, they're just really fast.
Missing Mom: His real mom is suggested to have died while leading Shen and the wolves away from him.
Moses in the Bullrushes: His mother hid him in a crate of radishes before leading the wolves away from him and presumably sacrificing herself. The radishes were eventually shipped to Mr. Ping's noodle shop.
Nice Guy: He doesn't have a single mean bone in his body.
Po dreams about having a Nice Hat at the beginning of the first film. At the end of the film he walks out of the mist appearing to be wearing one, but it turns out just to be a wok that fell on his head.
He gets one in the second movie, but promptly loses it in a failed attempt to use it as an attack.
Oblivious Adoption: Quite obviously, there is no way a panda could be the biological son of a goose, but the issue is never addressed. When Mr. Ping reveals to Po that he isn't his father, Po says he already knew, probably because of how obvious it was.
Mr. Ping: You knew?? Wh- who told you??
Po: Nobody! I mean, come on, Dad.
Older than They Look/ Vague Age: Shen's comment about waiting "thirty years for this day" when he takes over Gongmen implies Po to be at least in his late twenties, giving a couple years for Shen experimenting before he was exiled.
RookieSixth Ranger: The newest addition to the Furious Five, and initially the least experienced.
Running Gag: His complete inability to climb long flights of stairs.
Sad Clown: In the first film, Po has serious self-esteem issues, considering himself a fat failure. However, Master Shifu is able to lift his spirits considerably and he has since felt better about his new life.
Ship Tease: With Tigress, especially during the second film.
Stepford Smiler: In the first film. His cheerful attitude hides some massive self-esteem issues, and despite his constant fanboying to the Furious Five, he's painfully aware that they and Shifu view him as a joke. He gets over it after they finally accept him.
Stone Wall: Po is not nearly at the level of fighting skill as Shifu or any of the Furious Five, but he is nearly impossible to physically injure. Every fight he goes in is mostly him absorbing damage (and after learning to fight, attacking opportunistically). This ultimately saves him in the second movie, where his sheer defense allows him to survive getting hit by Shen's giant cannon.
An old Red Panda, he is the kung fu teacher and master of Po and the Furious Five, and deuteragonist of the first film. He originally refuses to accept Po as the Dragon Warrior until the young panda proves himself. He is the protege of Master Oogway, and has succeeded him as spiritual leader of the Valley of Peace in the wake of his death.
Anti-Hero: At first, given his borderline abusive treatment of Po and frankly assholeish attitude.
Awesomeness by Analysis: In the Legend of Awesomeness episode "Five Is Enough", Shifu is shown to be this by analyzing not only the opposing team's fighting style and flaws in the contest, but also the villain of the episode's to the point of replicating his signature move.
Badass Grandpa: He looks older than Oogway, but is only slightly less badass.
Big Damn Heroes: In the second film, he convinces a pessimistic Master Ox and Master Croc to fight against Lord Shen in the climax, though the convincing happens off screen.
Big Eater: He is seen eating a large amount of dumplings in a few mere seconds during Po's training montage.
Big Good: After Oogway dies. He even gets a new outfit to show it.
Character Development: Since he trained Po to be the Dragon Warrior, and the giant panda helped undo his mistakes with Tai Lung, he's been feeling much better in the second film. Just take a look at this visual proof.
Comedic Sociopath: A teacher chucking his student down a flight of stairs the size of a small mountain wouldn't have much in the way of employment prospects in real life. Justified in that he's a traditional Chinese Wushu Sifu. Historically, in Imperial China, outright abusive treatment of students by people in his position was not only tolerated, but expected.
Cynical Mentor: After Tai Lung's turn to evil, and to Po before he proves himself capable of intense physical action.
Dating Catwoman: The show reveals that he has fallen for a crafty thief who uses her kung fu skills for the wrong purpose. Despite this, he finds himself immensely attracted to her and she with him.
Defrosting Ice King: Like Tigress, he mellows out quite a bit in the second film, to the point that he now resembles his deceased master.
Demoted to Extra: In the sequel he gets a couple of brief scenes at the start, then sends Po on his way while he remains in the Valley of Peace until the very end when he does the Big Damn Heroes bit. Justified in that his character arc was mostly done with by the end of the first movie and someone had to watch the Jade Palace.
Deuteragonist: Shifu is the other character in the first movie to undergo major changes.
Glass Cannon: He is a very fast and powerful fighter, but suffers a lack of reach and stamina against tougher and larger opponents like Tai Lung. First evidenced in his match with Po at the end of his training, when the main advantage Po has on him is that Shifu is comparatively tiny.
Heel Realization: When Po goes off on him just after Oogway's death, the look on Shifu's face makes it obvious that this was the first time he had seen Po as an actual person with feelings.
Handicapped Badass: He walks with a limp since he was struck in the leg/hip by Tai Lung, but that does nothing to stop him from being a good fighter.
I Gave My Word: Shifu promises Oogway he will train Po minutes before the former unexpectedly passes away.
I Have No Son: Towards Tai Lung, briefly. Shortly after he tells him he was always proud of him though, and apologises for being a poor parent.
Jerkass: Until his Character Development in the latter half of the first film, he only shows concern about the kung fu techniques of his pupils and is downright mean to everyone who does not meet his impossibly high standards (while his contempt is completely focused on Po for much of the story, the Furious Five get their share before Po enters the stage). No wonder that both Tai Lung and Tigress have... serious self-esteem issues under their outward demeanor.
Ki Attacks: Blows open a rock with chi during his fight with Tai Lung and apparently knows the Wuxi Finger Hold.
Meaningful Name: "Shifu" (師父) means "master". Word of God has said his name was chosen for it translating to "Father Teacher", which Shifu was originally developed to be: Po's adoptive father as well as teacher (which was also the reasoning behind casting him as a red panda), "so the sentiment is still there even though the story point is not".
One could see it as Shifu allowing Tai Lung to be released, since if not for his paranoia, he wouldn't have sent Zeng to double check his holdings and allowed Tai Lung the feather he needed to escape. However, he only did that because Oogway said Tai Lung would escape, therefore it could be considered Oogway's fault. Also counts as Self-Fulfilling Prophecy.
Doubly so for Shifu: If he had taken efforts to ensure Tai Lung was taught humility, Tai Lung wouldn't have gone down the dark path when he was denied the Dragon Scroll by Oogway.
Nightmare Fuel: Invoked. Obviously, Tai Lung's betrayal gave him immense guilt and pain. But the very worst memory of all...
Shifu(right to Po's face): The day you were chosen... was the worst day of my life. By far. Nothing else comes close. Brrrr.
Not so Above It All: In Legends of Awesomeness, he initially shows disdain for the idea of Kung Fu Fight Clubbingnote Peng has been travelling around and starting up meetings to teach the people and allow them to defend themselves, rather than let Kung Fu remain a weapon used only by masters and criminals; Po immediately jumps on board at the idea, but when he sees it for himself first hand, he has a blast.
Not So Different: In an episode of Legends of Awesomeness titled My Favorite Yao, he's compared to Po. He's a giant fanboy of this kung fu master named Yao, and has action figures of Yao (in his meditation box) and himself even going as far as to accidentally letting Yao unleashed and going into Sensory Overload!
Also heavily implied by the simple choice of his species — a different kind of Kung Fu Panda.note Acknowledging, of course, that the red panda's classification has always been somewhat controversial. Molecular DNA research indicates that it's basically a far-removed cousin of skunks, racoons, otters, weasels, and badgers that split off long ago, but still fits into the Musteloidea superfamily connecting all of them. Red and Giant pandas have a common ancestor... that lived tens of millions of years ago in the Tertiary period.
The Obi-Wan: Much more apparent by the sequel, where he replaces Oogway as the Valley of Peace's resident Obi-Wan. He is also the Obi-Wan to Po's Luke. By the sequel he has achieved the inner peace necessary to be this. It wasn't so much unapparent in the first film as averted, as he was too bitter and cold to be this, save towards the end.
Parents as People: Was far too busy training his adopted children in kung fu to actually, you know, parent them.
Perpetual Frowner: At least for the first half of the first movie. Both the Furious Five and Po even straight-out lampshade this when they talk about a time that Shifu "actually used to smile" and when Po is imitating him. However, he starts to get better when Po (unintentionally) starts showing promise of really being the Dragon Warrior.
Pintsized Powerhouse: He's, what, a tenth Po's size? Smaller? Yet he can fling Po around like it's nothing. This shines in the sequel when the first sign of Shifu's presence in the final battle is no less than a dozen armed wolves being sent flying in the distance.
Pride: He was blinded by this while training Tai Lung, preventing him from seeing the monster Tai Lung was becoming. Interviews with Dustin Hoffman indicated that Shifu's characterization was meant to suggest that he himself once aspired to become the Dragon Warrior, but when this failed to come to pass, he resolved to be the master who trained the Dragon Warrior instead.
Sadist Teacher: In the first film, towards Po. His main motive may have been to get RID of Po, but there is a slight chance that he was enjoying it.
Twitchy Eye: Tends to happen when he gets annoyed at Po (which is often).
You Are Better Than You Think You Are: When Shifu at the Pool of Sacred Tears asks Po if he wants to learn kung fu, his response to the panda's impassioned "Yes!" says that he knows Po can be trained after all.
The Furious Five
The most famous and skilled kung fu masters in all of China, students of the Jade Palace and Po's personal idols.
A Dog Named Dog: They are each named after both their species and the kung fu style they've mastered.
The Worf Effect: The first film builds them up as powerful and badass mainly to show how much more powerful and badass Tai Lung is when he takes them down. They get more of a chance to shine in the sequel.
The strongest and boldest of the Furious Five, and tertiary protagonist of the first film (deuteragonist of the sequel). She initially resents Po for being chosen as the Dragon Warrior over her, believing herself to be more worthy, but has since mellowed out considerably and is now one of his most loyal friends.
Action Girl: She isn't one of China's most famous kung fu masters for nothing.
Badass: Particularly in the second film. Amongst other things, it's strongly implied she could still beat the crap out of Po, even after he's defeated Tai Lung. Then there's her plan to run to the top of a toppling tower. From the outside.
Battle Couple: As part of the Ship Tease in the second film, Po and Tigress often work closest together in combat with specific tactics they evidently developed together.
Cooldown Hug: Delivers one to Po in the second film to end their fight over why Po couldn't open up about his problems, and to show him just how much she cares for him. She is later paid back with a Bear Hug.
Crazy-Prepared: Tigress has protocol for dealing with a rooster wielding a battle-axe and a banana. You have to approach from the side holding the battle-axe, because the banana's a decoy.
Did You Think I Can't Feel?: Po assumes that she can't feel emotional pain in addition to being Made of Iron. She seems taken aback, but is interrupted before she can correct him. Later, he thinks Tigress is too "hardcore" to understand why he wants to ask Lord Shen about his past. She retorts by lunging at him...and giving him a hug coupled with this little comment:
Tigress: The hardcore do understand. But I can't watch my friend be killed.
Does Not Know Her Own Strength: In her backstory in Secrets of the Furious Five, she was feared by everyone at the orphanage she was raised in because she couldn't control her strength properly.
Doorstop Baby: In "Kung Fu Day Care", it's revealed that Tigress was left at the doorstep of the Bao Gu Orphanage as a baby.
Femininity Failure: Doing anything stereotypically feminine is outside her skillset. She tries to sing and do the Ceremonial Princess Dance in "The Princess and the Po" and can neither dance nor sing.
Freudian Excuse: She acts so cold and aloof because she knows about the trouble Shifu went through with Tai Lung, which means that he hasn't let himself show any emotional attachment towards her and constantly tells her—as well as the rest of the Five—that she can do better, rather than ever say he is proud of what she has already done. She desperately wants his approval, so is understandably annoyed when Po is selected as the Dragon Warrior with zero training after spending decades of hard work trying to become Shifu's star pupil. She warms up to him when he goes through Shifu's Training from Hell and still doesn't quit, because he's always modest around all of them, and after he earns the respect of her teammates, though she's the last to show it.
Huge Schoolgirl: She was raised in an orphanage full of pigs, bunnies, and geese, and she was naturally much bigger and stronger than any of the other children. The fact that she did not know her own strength only made things worse.
Loves My Alter Ego: In Legends of Awesomeness, she falls in love with the Midnight Stranger who is actually Po in disguise. When Tigress finds out who he really is, she leaves to throw up.
Made of Iron: Po punches her in the arm and only succeeds in hurting his hand. She doesn't even seem to notice. She also counted half the planks in the Thread of Hope with her back (and too solid hits from Tai Lung in general) and didn't die. Also, she took a direct hit from Lord Shen's cannon and survived. For perspective, Another kung fu master known for being unstoppable died from the same cannon.
Parental Abandonment: She is confirmed to be an orphan, though how and why she became one is unknown.
Perpetual Frowner: Especially in the first movie. By the second, she's lightened up a little, having gotten closer to Po and actually enjoying his company (some of his childish antics aside), but she's still easily the most serious of the Five even then.
Pragmatic Hero: She's an honorable kung fu warrior, but isn't above using dirtier tactics against her opponents, like trying to drop a rope bridge out from under Tai Lung.
Precocious Crush: According to Po in "Jailhouse Panda", Tigress had a crush on Shifu growing up.
"The Reason You Suck" Speech: She gives a harsh one to Po in the Legends Of Awesomeness episode Chain Reaction, saying that Po thought of everything as a game and thinks Oogway made the wrong choice in choosing the Dragon Warrior. But after Po gave a small emotional one to her in return, she regrets what she said.
Averted at the end of the episode, where she thanks Po for rescuing her by saying that Oogway made the right choice after all.
Replacement Goldfish: She feels overshadowed by Tai Lung, and incapable of taking the place he supposedly had in Shifu's heart. As Secrets of the Furious Five reveals, she was adopted by Shifu as well, making her Tai Lung's replacement in all aspects. She's wrong at least in the sense that Shifu did a very poor job of expressing his love and approval in time to Tai Lung as well.
The Resenter: To Po, initially. She more than gets over it when he impresses her by defeating Tai Lung by himself.
When She Smiles: She always tries to be the serious martial arts warrior, but when she smiles, it's like she's letting you see the true inner beauty she has. While some of her smiles might seem somewhat strained, if you're Po or a little bunny on Winter Festival Eve, you get the honest, heartwarming smile.
"For once, I'm not the 800 pound gorilla in the room."
Voiced by: Jackie Chan (Films) James Sie (TV Series) Jaycee Chan (Young)
The prankster of the Furious Five. He's very approachable, fairly street smart, and has a good sense of humor.
Banana Peel: In his younger days, he liked leaving these on the ground for people to slip on. He even tried using them against Oogway, but it didn't work.
The Quiet One: In the first film, he has the fewest lines of any of the five.
Seldom Seen Species: A Gee's golden langur is only found in India and Bhutan. It is also endangered.
Simple Staff: He sometimes fights with a bō, making him the only member of the Furious Five to fight with a weapon.
The Trickster: He originally played pranks on people because of an embarrassing event that happened to him when he was a child, making him a laughing stock. Also, the "Owl Be Back" episode of the TV series: "Can I borrow that fake doodie?"
"You can chain my body, but you will never chain my warrior spirit!"
Feather Fingers: Averted. He's the only bird character in the cast who uses his talons instead of his wings as hands. The one exception is in Secrets of the Furious Five, in which he uses his wings to hold several different things.
Nice Guy: Not the nicest member of the Five (that would be Viper), but still generally friendly and polite.
Nice Hat: Almost always seen wearing a Chinese rice hat, even during battle.
The Smart Guy: While not necessarily "smart", he definitely seems to have the most common sense.
Super Strength: Not to the extent Tigress and Mantis have it, but he does regularly carry the heavier members of his team with no visible effort. He starts breathing hard when he has to carry four of them at once, though.
Team Mom: Word of God describes him as being a "mother hen" to the other members of the Furious Five.
It's hinted at in the first film. It takes a Mama Bear to simultaneously carry all four of his paralyzed teammates away from a losing battle, even though they are heavier than him even without being deadweights, just to ensure all of their safety.
Also in the second movie when Po is pulled out of the water after Shen's boat explodes, Crane asks him to "never do that again" in a voice that shows he was seriously worried.
Weak, but Skilled: Given his scrawny frame, no one thought he was cut out for kung fu and he got a job as a janitor. However, he developed the speed and reflexes he needed while working to become a skilled warrior; all he needed was confidence.
Wind from Beneath My Wings: A couple of times in the sequel. "Wings of Justice! Caw-CAW!" Also counts as a Chekhov's Gun. He did it once for the demonstration in the first movie, but never really got to use it after that until the sequel.
Workplace-Acquired Abilities: How'd he become so skilled? He single-handedly (wingedly?) took care of the cleaning of the number one kung-fu school he worked in!
Yamato Nadeshiko: Probably not intentional (the setting is China and Yamato Nadeshiko is a Japanese ideal), but strangely enough Crane actually features the key personality traits: Helpfulness, caring, obedience of authority, humility, soft-spoken politeness, grace, while still knowing how to be Badass. Being the Team Mom only contributes to this. Though Crane was about as irritated at Po for one-upping him as everyone else, only Viper shows it less than he does. This exchange shows the closest he gets to losing his temper:
Po: Thanks. Crane: Don't mention it. Po: No really, I appreci— Crane: —ever.
"Fear the bug!"
Voiced by: Seth Rogen (Films) Max Koch (TV Series)
The smallest of the Furious Five, but still just as strong as any other kung fu master. He is also a skilled acupuncturist.
Somewhat logically. All There in the Manual. The sequel seems to suggest he's actually looking forward to the day he can settle down with a female mantis and eventually get his head bitten off. Then again it may have been Gallows Humor, since he and the Five were captured by Shen and they all thought China was done for.
One of KFP2's deleted scenes included a scene where he goes up to a bar to try to find Master Ox and Master Croc... but he utterly freaks out when he finds out that it's a female mantis who's the bartender. Doing everything in his power not to attract her attention, he quickly flees.
Strangely averted in an episode of Legends Of Awesomeness, where he tried to woo a female mantis, and fights against another mantis for her hand. Thankfully, it didn't work out.
Leeroy Jenkins: In the past, when he'd rush into battle without paying heed to any precautions.
The Medic: This is where the acupuncture comes in.
Napoleon Complex: Not to the point of it being a Berserk Button, but he does get a bit irked whenever his size is mentioned. It's also said in the artbook that Mantis does all of his lofty kung fu feats (i.e. breaking buildings instead of bricks) in compensation for his size. He also beats the crap out of a couple of bad guys when they indirectly call him cute in the sequel.
Pintsized Powerhouse: Strong enough to hold a broken rope bridge with Tai Lung and three of his team mates on it.
Waif-Fu: Regularly takes down opponents way bigger then her, including the aforementioned gorilla.
Well Done Daughter Gal: She was very loved by her father, a kung fu master who relied on his venomous fangs, but he feared that she wouldn't be able to carry out his legacy because she was born without fangs. She eventually proved herself to him when she used her ribbon dancing skills to beat up a bandit who shattered her father's fangs with armor.
"You are too concerned with what was and what will be. There's a saying: Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift. That is why it is called the present."
Voiced by: Randall Duk Kim
An ancient tortoise from the Galapagos Islands and creator of kung fu. He is Shifu's mentor, and was the one who chose Po to become the Dragon Warrior. He has ascended to the heavens, leaving Shifu in his place as leader of the Jade Palace.
Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: He's a bit eccentric, but he is regarded as being one of the wisest and most powerful (if not the most powerful) characters in the series.
Curbstomp Battle: He delivers a single, swift beatdown on a rogue Tai Lung in a flashback... and he was already past his prime by then.
Disney Death: Has one in the Secrets of the Masters short. Of course, since we've already seen his actual death, this wasn't fooling anyone.
Expy: He's a green, somewhat eccentric, but wise Old Master of an Ancient Tradition as well. He is also surprisingly agile for his age, but despite this, he uses a walking cane. That sounds very much like Yoda.
Levitating Lotus Position: He has an interesting version of advanced meditation: he uses the crook at the top of his walking stick as a place to rest his head, while he balances the rest of his body on top of it.
Meaningful Name: His name is based on the Chinese word for "turtle" (烏龜, wūguī).
Martial Pacifist: Known for his peaceful and pacifistic nature. He developed kung fu primarily as a method of self-defense.
The Obi-Wan: He is the Qui-Gon Jinn to Shifu's Obi-Wan Kenobi.
Old Master: In this case, he's the Old Master of another Old Master.
Good Parents: Despite their obvious differences, he truly loves Po as his own son.
Hidden Depths: Quirky goose, awesome cook, surprisingly skilled at Chinese chess. In both films, he is also wise in the general themes that the films play upon before anyone else grasps them, such as the importance of being yourself in the first and the ability to let go of the past in the second.
Honest John's Dealership: A mild case in that he is a loving father and has a nice sense of community, but he's also a canny restauranteur who sees nothing wrong in taking advantage of opportunities to honestly enhance his business' profits, such as charging extra for lonely people to eat at his place's Winter Festival night dinner or displaying his son's old possessions as tourist attractions.
I Am Not Your Father: Confesses this in the second movie. Ironically, Po already knew (well, he says he knew), he just wanted his dad to admit it.
Like Father, Like Son: Both he and Po share personality quirks, most notably that when embarrassed, they turn sideways and peek nervously at those looking at them.
Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: After bringing Shifu the news of Tai Lung's escape, he completely disappears from the rest of the movie, save for a picture in the end credits. Not that he was important for anything else. Downplayed because he has made appearances elsewhere in the series: A voiced appearance in the Holiday special, assisting Po in picking the chef and talking about the forbidden hand wave, and several times in Legends of Awesomeness. He is completely absent from the second film, however.
Foreshadowing: When he takes off from the Jade Palace to deliver the message to Chorh-Gom, several feathers are seen falling off of him.
Shoot the Messenger: Played with. Vachir doesn't kill him for bringing Shifu's message that states his restraints and guards may not be adequate (he's technically a good guy, and Zeng did warn him he was "just the messenger" and it was Shifu questioning his authority, not him), but he does everything else he can get away with—a Neck Lift, Minion Maracas, threats, sadistically enjoying Zeng's fear when he forces him to view Tai Lung and the safeguards holding him, and refusing to let him leave during the prison break (thus putting his life in danger) because he didn't want anyone to know of his failure to hold Tai Lung.
Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Though the blame can be spread to others, namely Oogway for his vision, Shifu for sending him and Vachir for knocking the feather loose it was still his feather that caused the problem.
"Fly back there and tell them... the real Dragon Warrior is coming home."
Voiced by: Ian McShane André Sogliuzzo (TV Series during Po's illusion) Michelle Ruff (as a baby)
The Big Bad of the first film. One of Master Shifu's earlier students and adopted son, Tai Lung is an arrogant Snow Leopard who turned evil and went on a rampage. For that he was imprisoned for twenty years. It is the prophecy of his escape that sets the events of the series into motion, and his defeat at the hands of Po that affirms Po as the Dragon Warrior.
Badass: Escaping from the prison built specifically to contain him, using only a feather? Check. Destroying a thousand-strong army in the process, as if it was nothing? Check. Taking on the five most famous kung-fu masters at once? Check. Defeating their even more powerful mentor without taking a single hit in return? Check. There is little doubt that, had he only managed to overcome his inner flaws, he would have been either the most powerful kung fu master ever, or second only to Oogway.
Cain and Abel: The Cain to Tigress' Abel, with Tigress being the foster sister.
Cats Are Mean: Aside from being the Big Bad, he's also kind of a jerk in general. Look no further then his conversation with Tigress.
Calling the Old Man Out: Gives Shifu one, saying "I rotted in jail for 20 years because of your weakness!" Shifu apologizes for his mistakes he made raising Tai Lung. Tai Lung declares that he doesn't give a damn and proceeds to strangle his former master, claws raised.
Dramatic Irony: Shifu talked about how Tai Lung would become strong enough one day to receive the Dragon Scroll, and Tai Lung trained hard to succeed and make him proud. This type of upbringing made him arrogant, prideful and power-hungry, precisely the character flaws that made him unsuitable to receive the scroll. And then when he finally reads it and Po explains that there is no secret to ultimate power, you just need to believe in yourself, the deep inferiority complex Tai Lung has developed means he can't or won't accept that because he needs the scroll's "power" to get the validation of his skill that he craves.
The Dreaded: Everyone fears him. His master, the villagers, the main character...even Vachir loses his cocky bravado once it becomes clear that he's screwed.
Et Tu, Shifu?: Tai Lung feels this way when Shifu doesn't speak up after Oogway refuses to give him the dragon scroll.
Fallen Hero: Used to be a great hero in the Valley. Then Oogway decided that he wasn't enough of a hero to deserve the Dragon Scroll and it all went downhill from there.
Freudian Excuse: He turned evil not only because he was denied the Dragon Scroll, but also because Shifu did nothing about it despite the tremendous amount of support he gave before.
The Gift: Though it's to his detriment. He has a severe ego problem that prevents him from being truly receptive of the Dragon Scroll's wisdom. This is why Oogway refused to make him the Dragon Warrior. His response to this was less than cordial.
Inferiority Superiority Complex: Raised to believe he would be made the Dragon Warrior (his given name's meaning in Mandarin makes it clear Shifu believed this as soon as he discovered what a Child Prodigy he was, and the director's commentary stated Shifu believed he would be the Dragon Warrior, he became arrogant, prideful, and convinced of his own heroism and perfection...but since "all I ever did, I did to make you proud!" it seems obvious that Tai Lung believed he needed the validation of the scroll to make himself have any worth, let alone to earn Shifu's love and pride. (The Reality Subtext of how orphans were treated in ancient China, and how important it was to know one's ancestry, should be kept in mind here.) This is made clearest of all when Po explains the meaning of the Dragon Scroll to him —- not only is he unable to accept that the only real power comes from within (because he thinks he has no worth and thus needs outward validation), but when he first stares into the scroll to see only his reflection, he declares, "It's nothing!"
The Juggernaut: 1000 rhino warriors don't get a hit on him, the Furious Five can't stop him & even Master Shifu is defeated by him. Po & Master Oogway seem to be the only characters who stand any sort of chance against him.
Pressure Point: "Shifu taught you well...but he didn't teach you everything." However, when he tries to use it against Po, it doesn't work - while he is hitting in the right spots, Po... still isn't the best of shape, to put it politely, and that layer of cellulite protects him from Tai Lung's attack.
Rage Against the Mentor: Shifu raised him with ideas of greatness but let him down when he was denied that greatness. He took out his rage on the village and later Shifu himself. Then his rage simmered for twenty years. "EVERYTHING I'VE DONE I DID TO MAKE YOU PROUD!"
Happens again near the end of his battle with Po, as Tai Lung finally gets his hand on the Dragon Scroll. With Tai Lung confused, Po calmly comforts him and tries to explain to him what the scroll was for and why it was never given to Tai Lung. Tai Lung won't have any of it and tries to attack Po again, with Po implementing the Wuxi Finger Hold.
The Resenter: Deeply resents Shifu, and to a lesser extent, Oogway, for denying him the Dragon Scroll.
Screams Like a Little Girl: A variant - he gives a deeply undignified startled-kitten squeak when Po tricks him into biting his own tail. (In his defense, cats have bones in their tails—such a bite would hurt.)
Shadow Archetype: He represents what Po could have been with a bad teacher. Notice one of his first lines (see Large Ham) is similar, if less funny, to Po's first line. Also both of them are incurable show-offs, even when the situation calls for dead seriousness. When Tai Lung appeared before Shifu out of nowhere before their confrontation he was hiding at a distance for some time and waited for Shifu to blink, so that his entrance could be appropriately dramatic (as explained in DVD commentary).
Slouch of Villainy: When Tai Lung encounters the Furious Five while heading into the village, the first thing he does on the broken bridge is use it like a lounge chair while taunting them.
Starter Villain: He's the first villain Po faces and it's not until he defeats him that he truly earns his title as the Dragon Warrior.
Super Strength: Having a giant boulder hanging on a chain from each paw was not enough to restrain him, he sends rhinos flying like rag dolls and tears a piece of stone bigger than himself from the temple's stairway to hurl it at Shifu; he distinguishes himself even in the world where unnatural strength automatically comes with kung fu mastery.
Trash Talk: Tai Lung's pre-battle banter with Tigress is such a masterpiece of condescension that he seems to be taunting her on purpose. Against Po he just voices his arrogance... and that piece of Trash Talk sounds much lamer. Part of it seems to be his disbelief that it was a panda of all creatures that achieved his lifelong dream, rather than one of the more well-known/stronger races, like a tiger or an ox.
Smug Snake: Constantly brags how escape-proof Chorh-Gom prison is, not realizing that the restraining shell is the main, if not the only thing that keeps Tai Lung there... and indirectly provides Tai Lung means to escape.
Only in It for the Money: Initially agreed to help defeat the Wu Sisters because he thought he would be rewarded with great financial riches, though it's implied that he also thought it would make him more like his father.
Rhino Rampage: His Unstoppable Force charge; once he gets going, nothing can stop him. Except for Shen's cannon.
"Well Done, Son" Guy: For a long time he felt as though he could never quite live up to his father's heroic legacy.
The Worf Effect: Is shown to be very powerful and formidable to make Shen and his cannon seem like more of a threat.
Master Storming Ox
"It's time to surrender, panda. Kung fu is dead."
Voiced by: Dennis Haysbert
Thundering Rhino's star pupil and loyal friend, and a member of the Kung Fu Council of Gongmen City.
Achilles in His Tent: After seeing how much damage Shen's cannon can cause, he becomes a Play-Along Prisoner together with Croc, and tells Po that they will not join him in his fight against Shen. However, both Ox and Croc join the final battle after Shifu convinces them off-screen.
Only in It for the Money: Initially agreed to help defeat the Wu Sisters because he thought he would be rewarded with great financial riches.
Play-Along Prisoner: The Gongmen City prison bars don't keep him imprisoned. He could leave whenever he wanted but he doesn't because of his fear of Shen's cannon, and because he fears that if he and Croc don't play along, Shen will turn the canon on the city.
Defeat Means Friendship: According to Word of God, he was a lawless bandit who decided to use his skills for good after being defeated and spared by Thundering Rhino. Leads to a minor plot hole when Secrets of the Masters talked about a completely different story on how he became a good guy and met up with Thundering Rhino, which also included Ox and Oogway. It's not inconceivable that it could be a Retcon, or that the source wasn't in charge of Secrets of the Masters.
Early-Bird Cameo: He's in Po's dream (as a bad guy) in the first film. He also shows up in Mantis' story from Secrets of the Furious Five.
An elderly goat with the power of foresight, who served as an adviser to the ruling family of Gongmen City, the Peacocks. Upon request by Lord Shen's parents, she had foretold what the future held for their son should he continue his current path: defeat at the hands of a warrior of black and white.
The Atoner: She holds tremendous guilt for telling Shen the prophecy that he would be defeated by a "black and white" warrior, inadvertently making herself responsible for the ensuing panda holocaust.
Soothsayer: (telling Shen's fortune) I see...*plucks Shen's feather*...pain... Shen: Ow! Soothsayer: And anger... *bites Shen's robes* Shen: How dare you! That is the finest silk in the province! Soothsayer: ...followed by denial... Shen: This is not fortune-telling! You're just saying what's happening right... Soothsayer: ...now?
Defiant Captive: Shen keeps her as a prisoner and while she never tries to escape, she still doesn't make her imprisonment easy for him. Indeed, she irritates and lectures him.
Parental Substitute: To Shen. All In The Manual, though some of her interactions with Shen imply this. You get the feeling that if anyone else tried to take a bite out of his robes, they would get a knife to the throat.
The Big Bad of the second film. He is a peacock whose clan rules over Gongmen City but that wasn't enough for him; he is possessed by a desire to take over all of China. For that he invented the cannon, which poses a threat to the very existence of kung fu itself.
Agent Peacock: By the time the credits roll, you will believe a peacock can be a skilled fighter and a cruel and terrifying villain.
Ax-Crazy: Is constantly on the verge of a nervous breakdown and plagued by paranoid delusions about his parents not loving him. He deals with all of them by starting wars and commiting genocide, which he sincerely thought would make his parents proud.
Badass: Despite how insane and evil he is, he is a pretty awesome fighter.
Being Evil Sucks: Spends decades plotting his revenge and relentlessly pursuing his ambition to rule over China in an attempt to assuage his emotional pain and find happiness. This only succeeds at making him feel more bitter and miserable.
BFG: He invented the cannon, in order to destroy Kung Fu and take over China.
Chocolate Baby: His parents were both regular blue peacocks, he came out white. He could be albino, due to his bright red eyes.
Combat Pragmatist: Uses throwing knives in addition to his spear, conceals his movements with his tail, and the entire purpose of inventing the cannon was to destroy kung fu masters he can't beat one-on-one. When confronted with a fight he can't possibly win, Po and the Furious Five, he flees out the window and calls down a barrage of cannonfire to destroy his own tower.
The Comically Serious: Despite being the most evil foe Po has faced so far, he has his hilarious moments, usually when Po is in the same scene.
Death Seeker: His introduction portrays him as an arrogant, prideful, and bloodthirsty villain, but it soon becomes clear that he is a deeply depressed bird, and admits that conquering China won't be enough to make him happy. As well his attitude swings between being precise in the details of his Evil Plan and being completely dismissive of events around him, so it's likely he really doesn't care what happens or if he succeeds or not. And when he doesn't, he seems more enraged that Po has achieved inner peace than he does actually being thwarted.
Dirty Coward: Downplayed Trope. His first response to a battle not going his way is to flee and/or hide behind his cannons. In particular, he tries to avoid a direct confrontation with Po because of the prophecy. However, since he does fight rather well when necessary, it's likely that these actions are due more to pragmatism than fear.
Even Bad Men Love Their Soothsayers: See Parental Substitute in the Soothsayer category. He shows hints of this when he encounters Po and the Furious Five for the first time. Despite being at the end of his patience, he never actually loses it unless Po makes a comment about the Soothsayer, the second time driving him to point a knife in Po's face. His treatment of the Soothsayer is more akin to that of a family member than a prisoner. The Soothsayer is also the only character in the movie that he never physically harms – as embittered as he is – despite the snarky, disrespectful attitude (and the prophecies) she gives him.
Evil Albino: In real life white peacocks aren't actually albino, instead having a genetic mutation called leucism. But since real white peacocks have blue eyes and Shen has red eyes, it's likely that he was intended to be an albino in this setting.
Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Is shocked that Po doesn't hold what he did to his species, his family, against him, and that he was able to let go of his pain, because his own pain has never went away, and he doesn't believe it ever will.
Eviler Counterpart: His backstory has significant parallels with that of Tai Lung — promised power by his parent figure, denied and exiled, returns to claim his place and prove himself. However, Shen's Freudian Excuse is weaker and his vengeance is more sinister. Tai Lung wanted the Dragon Scroll to prove to himself and Shifu he was worthy of it and was a Worthy Opponent to Po, whereas Shen wants to conquer the country and uses cannons because he lacks the strength to overcome seasoned kung fu masters in a fair fight.
Evil Genius: He discovered that fireworks could also serve as gunpowder, and then invented the cannon to put that discovery to use.
Freudian Excuse: His parents decided to banish and disown him for massacring the pandas. He saw this as an act of abandonment and has let the pain and resentment fester in him ever since. This being said, it is shown that he was heading down the path of villainy even before his banishment, so it is likely that the exile only accelerated his decline.
Shen's expanded backstory states that he was born sickly because of his leucism (similar to albinism) and that his parents deemed him "too weak and pitiful to deserve any attention." The Soothsayer acted as his nanny, but the coldness his own family showed him drove him to act the way he did.
Master Ox: What's in the box, Shen? Shen: Want to see? It's a gift. It's your parting gift. In that it will part you. Part of you here, part of you there. And part of you waaay over there, staining the wall.
Good Colors, Evil Colors: White is the traditional color of death in eastern Asian cultures, which alludes to his health issues and villainy.
In Wu Xing, white is metal and red is fire. He has both as his weapons in the form of the cannon, which is even described by Shifu as "it breathes fire, and spits metal".
Given that red is associated with positive emotions in chinese imagery, specially love, his red motif can also be seen as a distortion of his relationship with his parents.
Fire Is Red: As a consequence of this colour motif, the fires that Shen and his mooks use, both in the cannon and in regular torches, are of an unusual crimson tone. Justified as in Shen is explicitly stated to be working off of firework chemicals, so it stands to reason his cannonballs would have a colorful glow to them.
Good Scars, Evil Scars: His feet are covered in burn scars from weapon forging. He partly hides them with his metal talons.
Glass Cannon: Very agile and quick and has lethal aim with his throwing knives, but he's one of the few characters not Made of Iron and is clearly at a disadvantage when his blades aren't enough to overwhelm a more defensive foe.
Hero Killer: He very nearly kills Po in the Fireworks Factory. If the Soothsayer hadn't been around....
Hoist by His Own Petard/Karmic Death: Crushed by the very weapon he was going to use to conquer China, which only happened because he accidentally cut the ropes holding it up while trying to kill Po.
Humiliation Conga: His cannons, which he spent thirty years to invent, are obliterated in mere seconds by Po's cannonball deflection technique. Even more so as the event unfolds right before the eyes of the Kung Fu Masters and the entire population of Gongmen City, to the point where they actually cheer. He eventually gets crushed to death by his own cannon.
Ignored Epiphany: When the Soothsayer tells him his parents did love him, so much that it killed them to banish him, Shen looks genuinely moved for a few seconds before closing his eyes and brushing the information aside.
Knife Nut: He hides an arsenal of blades under those robes of his and he is terrifyingly skilled with them.
Knight of Cerebus: Tai Lung craved only the Dragon Scroll and there has been no solid on-screen evidence he ever murdered anyone. The second film opens with Shen ordering the genocide of the pandas, and ten minutes later he kills Thundering Rhino with a cannon before going on to wage a war against China and Kung Fu.
Leitmotif: "Ancient China/Story of Shen", which is first played in the opening scene, and accompanies Shen at a few points afterwards, most prominently during the Fireworks Factory battle.
Light Is Not Good: Both to Chinese and western imagery. In the west, white is obviously seen as the "good" colour, while red is the "good" colour in China (white is actually symbolic of death there). Add this to the fact that his name can be translated as "divinity", his association with fire and the resemblence to the mythological Feng Huang, and you got yourself a heavenly monster.
Man in White: A given thanks to his white plumage and colors.
Manipulative Bastard: He was able to manipulate Master Storming Ox into striking first during his return to Gongmen City and subsequently imprisoned both Masters Storming Ox and Croc with fear. That and the entire exchange with Po in the Fireworks Factory.
The Mentally Disturbed: He seems to suffer from chronic depression, paranoia (as far as his parents are concerned, thinking they never loved him) and is deeply insecure.
Moral Sociopathy: The creators' commentary implies that part of his denial to recognise how wrong he is because it's the only way he can justify his genocidal actions.
Never My Fault: When his parents banish him for committing genocide, he takes it as further proof they don't care about him instead of punishment. Even more so because being banished as opposed to being executed may have been an act of mercy on their part.
Nice Job Breaking It, Herod: Shen overhears a prophecy that he will be defeated by "black-and-white". He proceeds to massacre a panda village. However, Po's mother leaves the infant panda in a case of groceries that get delivered to Mr. Ping. This results in Po being in the right place and the right time to become the Dragon Warrior, receiving the training he will need to stop Shen. In fact, it's remembering the massacre and his mother's sacrifice that allows Po to master the skill he needs to overcome Shen's cannons.
Noble Demon: Deconstructed. Word of God is that he realizes just how terrible his deeds are. This only pushes him to do more in his attempt to conquer China because if he turns back now, his genocides and murder will have been meaningless instead of necessary sacrifices.
Obi-Wan Moment: He just closes his eyes before he is flattened by the weapon he knocked onto himself.
Overshadowed by Awesome: Despite being a sickly albino, relying on artillery and trickery over brawn, Shen is still a deadly skilled blade wielder. It's just that the kung fu masters are so powerful they overshadow him.
Razor Wings: His throwing knives are in the shape of feathers to help him conceal them, and he also uses his train as a weapon and distraction similar to what real life martial-arts styles with metal folding fans.
Screw Destiny: Shen's goal to conquer China is partially motivated by his desire to prove the Soothsayer wrong about her prediction that he will be defeated by a panda. His actions to change his fate led to him being banished.
Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: He originally planned to sail out of China with his armada in three days. After he fails to kill Po the first time, he decides to leave immediately rather than try to confront him again.
Self-Made Orphan: He is an indirect example. He massacred a village of pandas and was banished by his parents as a result. According to the Soothsayer, the grief of sending him away caused them to die from despair.
Soft-Spoken Sadist: For the most part, he's very calm, cool, and collected, and his voice is usually monotoned.
Tragic Villain: All he wanted was to make his parents proud, and thought that a path of conquest was the way to do it. It's hinted several times that he knows full well conquering China will do nothing to ease his pain and Word of God paints him as a somewhat remorseful figure. At the end, when he's finally beaten, he calmly accepts his death, perhaps realizing that his defeat truly was inevitable, or perhaps believing that death is the only way to end his torment.
Villainous BSOD: Is at a loss for words when Po achieves inner peace and uses his kung fu to redirect Shen's cannonfire to destroy his armada.
Villainous Breakdown: When Po returns after being hit by cannon fire and assumed dead, Shen, in a fit of fearful desperation, loses it and opens fire on his own men after killing his second-in-command. After Po obliterates his armada by redirecting cannon fire, Shen is left in a Villainous BSOD, not only because that he'd lost everything he'd spent years creating, but because Po had managed to overcome his own troubled past without succumbing to rage, instead finding inner peace. Po tries to explain that the secret to inner peace is the acceptance of the pain of the past. This only succeeds in angering Shen.
"Well Done, Son" Guy: Has an insecure relationship with his parents and is deeply hurt by his parents' rejection of him for his evil ways, causing him to believe they never loved him. Considers it an Awful Truth when Po demands to know about his parents and Shen lies that his parents didn't love him. He is also completely unable to understand how Po is able to come to terms with him killing Po's parents because he was never able to properly cope with the loss of his own parents.
Even Evil Has Standards: He refuses to fire at Po while knowing his own men would be caught in the crossfire. Shen kills him for it. Makes sense, since wolves operate as a pack. You can't just attack one and hope to get away with it. Fits nicely into the animal motifs.
Like Wolf and Fox, he's also Not So Different than Po in terms of attitude—it's just their morals and their choice of allies that sets them apart, as they can both be silly or serious, and their short battle has elements of You Fight Like a Cow.
Eye Scream: He lost his eye during the attack on the Panda Village. When he tried to attack baby Po, Po's father smashed his face with a rake.
Face-Heel Turn: He and his wolves used to be the royal guards of Gongmen City, but flocked to Shen's side because he treated them better than the rest of the royal family.
Family-Unfriendly Death: Considering the Bloodless Carnage of the rest of the series and its focus on slapstick kung fu fighting, taking a volley of throwing knives to the throat and falling to the side is pretty brutal.
Kick the Dog: Not above throwing innocent bystanders in front of danger to slow down his foes. He even throws children.
Killed Off for Real: Most likely, considering he was hit in the throat with several of Shen's knives point blank. Word of God via DVD Commentary states that he's alive but that particular comment about him being "alive" was a joke by Rodolphe Guenoden ("But he's not dead! He just fell off...yeah..."). While it's never confirmed that he's alive, it is true that it's never confirmed he is dead, either; in fact, Melissa Cobb did mention that she wondered if he ever died, and that she didn't know.
Large and in Charge: He's a good deal larger than all of the other wolves, making him easily stand out.
Stupid Cuddly Po: He can't seem to stop talking about how soft and cuddly Po is. Somewhat justified, as one of Po's main strategies in a fight is to use his... er... bulk, as a weapon, so he was probably exposed to the "Soft and Cuddly," nature of Po several times...
Top-Heavy Guy: Like Storming Ox, his legs are way smaller than the rest of his body.
Trash Talk: Played for Laughs. His "insults" consist of calling Po big, soft and cuddly... except that he talks about Po that way even when Po isn't around, and he isn't making fun of him. He describes him to Lord Shen as "Big and furry, soft and squishy... uh, kind of plush and cuddly."
Unskilled, but Strong: He doesn't seem particularly skilled in kung fu, but he sure knows how to use that hammer.
One of the former guards of Chorh-Gom prison, who lost his job after it was shut down after Tai Lung's defeat, which caused him to lose his house, his family, two goat friends, and a pair of slippers. Po met him during the Dragon Warrior Day celebration, and attempted to get his life back on track by getting him a job, a place to stay, and by teaching him kung-fu in order to quell his rage. Unfortunately, once he learned Po's true identity, he attempted to kill him. Ironically, his actions caused Chorh-Gom to be reopened... with himself as its first new inmate.
Blatant Lies: Claims he was on the front lines of the rhinos facing down Tai Lung, when... he was actually standing way in the back.
Dumb Muscle: Subverted. He's actually surprisingly competent and intelligent; his strange way of speaking just makes him seem dumb.
Dangerously Genre Savvy: After his return, he realizes Shifu may have made up Dragon Warrior Challenge Day, but he's the only one that knows it. He knocks out Shifu and locks him in a closet so no one knows he's really not the Dragon Warrior.
Genius Bruiser: He's actually surpisingly intelligent, homemaking a number of fake horns containing various weapons and picking his spot for when he could take revenge most effectively.
Evil Plan: Motivated by revenge on the Dragon Warrior for his lost job.
Ignored Epiphany: Po helps him and bends over backward to help him get his life back on track, but he throws it back in his face at every turn.
It's All About Me: He doesn't care about the damage Tai Lung would have done to the Valley of Peace, only that Po defeating him caused Hundun to lose his job.
Meaningful Name/Names to Run Away From Really Fast: Named for the Chinese god of chaos. Downplayed in that, while a credible threat after Po has trained him in kung fu, he is still pathetic and certainly not an embodiment of chaos or evil. However, in his return, he's far more competent and a legitiment threat.
Fung is the leader of a group of Crocodile Bandits. He most often relies on weapons to fight his opponents, but has been show to know some Kung Fu techniques, mostly in cases of defense. Fung appears regularly, sometimes leading his bandits, and other times serving as a lackey to another villainnote Such as Tong Fo or Evil!Po.
Affably Evil: He may be a bandit leader, but he acts like a snarky, rebellious twenty-something.
Ambiguously Gay: For the same reason as Gah-ri in "The Break Up", but without most of Gah-ri's gay stereotypes.
Catch Phrase: See the quote above. He's also prone to "Daaaarn it!" when things don't go his way.
Friendly Enemy: He and Po bond surprisingly often, and it's gotten to the point where rounding up his gang has become oddly casual. It helps that Fung is one of the least malevolent villains on the show - he's even one of the few on a first name basis with the panda.
Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Went back to save Po, even after using him to kidnap someone's son in order to hold him for ransom.
"Well Done, Son" Guy: Fung used to work for his father, in an effort to please him by helping him make terracotta warriors. However, he kept messing up and once glued one to his father's face by accident. Fung would later leave and take up thievery as a living.
Fung's formerly little cousin who grew into a titanic powerhouse far more dangerous than any of the other crocodile bandits. Huge, resistant to all blows and really, really strong, Li-Dong is consistently a powerful threat to the Jade Palace.
Badass: In sharp contrast to all of the other Croc Bandits. Li-Dong has wiped the floor with Po and Mantis, and even though Tigress beat him one-to-one, she was only able to after he triggered her Heroic Resolve.
Diminishing Villain Threat: Seems to have been introduced to avert this - the episode he debuts in has the Crocodile Bandits totally hit rock bottom in terms of threat level, only for him to show up and make more of a threat than they ever were before.
Dragon Ascendant: Though he always initially appears as a thug in the employ of someone else, he invariably ends up becoming the main threat of the episode in some way or another.
Dumb Muscle: Generally seems this way, but is actually smarter than he appears. He may not be as intelligent as Fung is, but he's a great deal more competent - especially when it comes to being a criminal.
Eviler than Thou: To Fung, though despite this he's perfectly willing to let his cousin call the shots most of the time.
Simpleton Voice: Though don't let it fool you - he's smarter than he sounds.
Unskilled, but Strong: He's such a threat physically that he barely needs to do anything but tank hits and swipe at his opponents to win - he can pull off some fancy moves, but usually he just overpowers everything through sheer force.
Would Hurt a Child: Upon losing his opportunity to ransom a kidnapped child, he attempts to throw the kid off of a cliff in sheer spite before Tigress manages to stop him.
"You think I don't know nobody likes me? You saw them pretend to, but... it's just because I'm a princess."
The daughter of the emperor, who was sent on a mission of peace to the kingdom of Qidan. Though she proved to be an insufferable brat at first, Po eventually got through to her and the two became friends. Eventually, it was revealed that she was to be offered to the Qi Dan as a servant to the Qidan's king, Temutai, in exchange for peace, but Po challenged him and successfully earned Mei Li's freedom.
Bratty Half-Pint: Throughout her introduction episode, until Po helps her turn around.
The king of the Qidan Clan, a group of warrior water buffalo, whose people once waged war with Mei Li's kingdom, until an agreement was made to bring peace. Said agreement was that the emperor must turn over a princess to be his royal servant, in exchange for the Qidan not attacking. Mei Li was set to become his new servant, until Po defeated him in battle, earning her freedom.Temutai appears regularly, usually as antagonist. One time he came to the Valley of Peace as part of a peace celebration, where he's amiable with Po and the others (though, with some hiccups along the way).
Big Bad: Sort of. He's the most recurring villain in the show.
The Dreaded: Has such a reputation that even Tigress and Mantis are wary of him. Po, however, initially thinks that his supposed kung-fu technique of being able to tear someone in half without touching them would be cool... to watch.
Go Karting with Bowser: In "The Kung Fu Kid", Temutai is invited to the Peace Jubilee. While there are hostilities and fights, he and Po do gush together about their liking of the olive branch crowns, he has a nice time at the evening feast alongside everyone (except Po), and ultimately things end well overall.
Temutai's nephew, who he brought to the Peace Ceremony in order to participate in the children's kung-fu matches. He ended up losing to Peng. Has a sister, who is apparently much better at kung fu than he is.
The Unseen: His sister, who's both larger and more skilled in kung fu than Jing Mei.
"Well, I have news for you! Kung Fu is outdated and useless! With machinery comes power!"
Voiced by: Wallace Shawn
A warthog who studied kung-fu under Master Oogway alongside Shifu. Together, the two of them created the Jade Palace's training hall. However, Taotie was still unable to improve his kung-fu, so he turned to machines to make up for his weaknesses, only for him to be cast out after unveiling his invention. Years later, he would manipulate Po, who had accidentally wrecked the training room, into helping him sneak into the Jade Palace so he could create a new machine and take his revenge.Taotie appears regularly, usually attempting to gain vengeance on Shifu and assert the dominance of machines over kung-fu.
Evil Plan: Demonstrating the superiority of machines over kung fun.
Humongous Mecha: Created one during his backstory to make up for his lack of proficiency in kung-fu. Oogway and Shifu weren't all that thrilled about it. He manipulates Po into letting him turn the Training Hall into a new one.
Simple Staff: Carries around a shinai that actually has a bunch of blades hidden in it. They also serve as propellers for a handy escape.
Weak, but Skilled: Tried to make up for his poor kung-fu with his skills in machinery.
Voiced by: Simon Helberg
Taotie's apathetic, slacker son, who effectively serves as his henchman. He doesn't seem to care much for his dad's work, despite Taotie saying he's "learning the family business." Bian Zao appears regularly with his father.
Emo Teen: He has shades of this, though he's really more just bored and apathetic.
Follow in My Footsteps: Taotie says he's learning the family business. Bian Zao doesn't seem too thrilled about it.
"Well Done, Son" Guy: Part of the reason he's always griping about things being "lame" is to cover his disappointment that his father is all consumed by revenge on the Jade Palace, and won't actually spend any quality time with him.
Jong Sung Jai Kai Chow
Voiced by: Wayne Knight
Jong is a takin that rules over a land that does not abide trespassers. Fung tricked Po into helping him kidnap his son for ransom, and in response, Jong had Po arrested. Even when Fung returned his son and confessed, Jong was still going to hold them captive for their crime.
Cool and Unusual Punishment: Anyone caught trespassing on his land will have their heads boiled with cabbage and their ear lobes stretched around their heads. He chooses to employ more traditional methods on Po, however.
Verbal Tic: Tends to refer to others as "My friend", even when they're not. Including his own son.
Voiced by: April Hong
Mantis's ex-fiance, who only took him back after he (falsely) claimed to be the Dragon Warrior. They were set to be married (again), when Mantis admitted the truth, and realized that Hao didn't deserve him.
Gold Digger: Only wanted to get back together with Mantis in order to enjoy the prestige of being the Dragon Warrior's wife.
A loris incarcerated in Chorh-Gom Prison, who once attempted to destroy the Valley of Peace with the devastating Sacred War Hammer of Lei Lang, but switched it with a fake before being captured. In order to learn the location of the real hammer, Po went into the prison disguised as a criminal, only for Tong Fo use him to help him escape. Tong Fo was eventually stopped and recaptured.
Big Eyes Little Eyes: The "small with large eyes" variation, though they do more to make him look more unsettling than cute.
The Sociopath: His mannerisms, his voice, his admitted fondness for manipulating others, and his general lack of empathy or concern for the damage the hammer would cause give him shades of this, though he's naturally a Lighter and Softer version of this trope.
An owl who was once the most powerful member of the previous Furious Five, who consisted of Shifu, three others, and herself. As Fenghuang grew stronger, she fell to evil, and attempted to wrest control over the Jade Palace from Oogway. Oogway defeated her and attempted to imprison her in an owl-shaped cage, only for her to flee. Years later, she encountered Po and learned Oogway had passed and returned to gain her vengeance on Shifu. She attempted to turn Po to her side, only for him to trick her and seal her in the owl-shaped cage. She was later taken to Chorh-Gom prison which she escaped from multiple times. A chance encounter with Po led to her gaining complete control of time and subsequently being banished to oblivion for disrupting the time stream.
Affably Evil: Not only does she banter playfully, act coquettish and genuinely offer to help train Po but she saves his life even before she knows who he is or how he can help her.
Bad Ass: Not only one the most powerful and individually threatening antagonists in TV Series, but also the only character in the entire franchise to actually put a decent fight against Oogway in the flashback. Sure, she loses, but after a real battle, not an effortless curbstomp.
By the events of "A stitch in time" she has become powerful enough to easily curbstomp Po several times even before she obtains the seeds of Shuyong.
Cardboard Prison: Her dialog during her intial appearance in "Stitch in time" implies that she has escaped and been recaptured enough by the Furious Five for everyone to treat her sudden appearance as completely normal.
Evil Feels Good: Makes this claim to Po, and by her mannerisms, seems to fully embrace it.
Knight of Cerebus: Her latest episode is probably the darkest of the series by quite a bit. First she murders Shifu, then takes control of time and casually erases the Furious Five from existence while taunting Po with the inevitability of his destruction. Ultimately she is sentenced to an eternity in oblivion for her trouble, the darkest fate for a non-supernatural antagonist thus far.
Meaningful Name: Fenghuang is taken from the legendary bird of the same name, which was the Chinese incarnation of the phoenix.
Secret Art: She's mastered all seven of the supposedly Impossible Moves.
Taken up to eleven when she masters an additional 5 Impossible Moves that not even Shifu knew existed.
Verbal Tic: She tends to repeat words at the beginning of her sentences.
Voiced by: James Sie
A monitor lizard and one of the xiaolin masters of the Sacred Onyx Council. He first appears to evaluate Shifu's qualifications as a master, and after Junjie manipulates Po, he removes Shifu and places Junjie in charge. Fortunately, he later arrived and overheard Junjie's machinations, and once the sinister fox was defeated, he re-installed Shifu as the master of the Jade Palace.
Genre Savvy: Played straight when he expects and catches one of Junjie's poison darts. Averted, however, when he doesn't expect the dozen or so that hit him in the back.
Reasonable Authority Figure: Chao at first seems to be defying this trope when he removes Shifu as master, but after all is said and done, he admits he learned something from Po and sets things right again.
One of the two xiaolin masters of the Sacred Onyx Council. After arriving to evaluate Shifu's qualifications as Master, he manipulates Po into getting Shifu dishonored and removed from his position as master of the Jade Palace. Once in charge, he throws out Po and the Furious Five, putting his five leopard underlings in their position. However, Po became wise to his schemes, and eventually, he was defeated and thrown into Chorh-Gom prison with his five servants. His next appearance, presumably after escaping, shows him impersonating the ghost of Oogway in order to sow discord within the Jade Palace.
Even Evil Has Standards: When Oogway's ghost who is really Shifu in disguise he shows reverence towards his former master. Junjie may just be a coward. He did the same thing when he realized Chao was within earshot, and his voice shook both when addressing Oogway's ghost and Chao. Worth noting that he looked genuinely thrilled when he thought Oogway saw his ruthless pursuit of power as "passion for [his] goal".
Evil Counterpart: To Shifu, both as a kung-fu master and in design. Also, he's a fox, to Shifu's red panda - a species of animal sometimes referred to as a firefox.
Mythology Gag: Junjie not only resembles an unused design for a fox civilian from Kung Fu Panda 2, he also appears similar to one of the early designs for Shifu, including a pair of spectacles that were included in said design.
Right Behind Me: Rants about his plan and calls Chao a "doddering old fool"... only for him to show up right behind him.
Dangerously Genre Savvy: Averted, however, when he reveals he was prepared countermeasures for this... and then had more poison darts ready should those fail.
The Creepy Leopards
Voiced by: ???
A quintet of five snow leopards that serve Junjie. After Junjie takes over as Master of the Jade Palace, they replace Tigress and the others as the new Furious Five. However, they are ultimately defeated by the originals when they come to save Po and Shifu, and are later incarcerated with him in Chorh-Gom prison.
Expy: Of the Wu Sisters, complete with Wind and Fire Wheels.
Informed Ability: They are supposedly trained in five kung fu styles, but their fighting styles look like one and the same, perhaps because their perfect teamwork and synchronized motions obscure their individual performances.
Samus Is a Girl: One of them is apparently a girl. Judging for her high-pitched grunts, the female leopard is apparently the one who fights Monkey, averting the Designated Girl Fight. This can vary depending on the dub.
The Voiceless: Other than grunts during battle, only one or two have ever spoken.
Voiced by: Danny Cooksey
A young snow leopard on a journey. After visiting the Valley of Peace during the Peace Jubilee, his kung-fu talents were discovered after he won a match against Temutai's nephew. He was immediately invited into the Jade Palace, quickly becoming popular and earning Po's jealousy. In an effort to drive him away, Po lied to Peng, only for him to become angry and attempt to defeat Temutai in order to prove himself. Po later revealed the truth and apologized, leading to Peng giving up and apologizing himself. In the end, he returned to his journey. He also reveals that he is the nephew of Tai Lung.
The Bus Came Back: In season 2, episode 8, to be exact. Only for him to leave for good at the end of the episode, thinking if he stays his inner darkness will take over and he'll become a second Tai Lung.
He comes back in Season 3 and leaves yet again. But this time, he's a lot more comfortable with learning kung fu and is off to open kung fu clubs around China.
Cats Are Mean: Zig-zagged. He's friendly and kind at first, goes absolutely nuts when he thinks he's been rejected, and then cycles back around when the truth comes out. He was furious when he found out Po killed his Uncle, then regretful when he found out Tai Lung was evil and Po had no choice. Then he got possessed by an evil amulet and nearly went Tai Lung on everyone, and then Po snapped him out of it, and then he decided he'd better leave for good.
Generation Xerox: Played with. Like Tai Lung, he appeared well adjusted, only to explode with anger when he found he was being rejected by the Jade Palace. However, once the truth came out, he did the exact opposite of his uncle and stood down. Only time will tell if Peng's destiny is to follow in his uncle's footsteps. He seems to think it's inevitable if he ever trains any further, and leaves the Jade Palace for good after his second visit.
Ultimately averted as the episode Kung Fu Club has him embracing kung fu again and wanting to teach others while still maintaining a heroic attitude.
Super-Strong Child: Without a doubt. We see him send Po flying, and hard, when he kicks him (twice), and Temutai clearly and visibly has to struggle to hold back a much smaller Peng. In his second appearance, this is his reason for leaving the Jade Palace for good. When an amulet possessed him and fed his anger over Tai Lung being evil, only Po was strong enough to stop him. Peng is terrified if next time, Po isn't around to do that, and gives up Kung Fu forever.
A member of the "Ladies of the Shade", a dancing troupe of snow leopards which is in actuality a group of clever thieves. When their leader, Su, decides to trick Po into inviting them into the Jade Palace so that she can steal the Dragon Chalice, she chooses Song to worm her way into the Dragon Warrior's good graces to accomplish this task. However, things don't go quite as Su had planned...even though they do get away with the chalice, when Po goes to recover it Song ends up changing sides and helping him escape. After Su is captured and sent to prison, Song takes over the Ladies of the Shade and will be helping them all reform.
Back-to-Back Badasses: Happens accidentally between her and Po during the Ladies' theft of the Dragon Chalice and again in the Ladies' village after she changes sides and helps Po escape.
Becoming the Mask: The longer she's around Po and finds out what a friendly, cute, innocent fellow he is, the harder it becomes for Song to lie to and trick him.
Expy: Like the rest of the ladies, her character model is based off of the Wu Sisters.
Sickeningly Sweethearts: Downplayed, since her relationship with Po is genuinely sweet, but some of her exchanges with Po, particularly the "heart" drawing, could come across this way. (The infamous Spaghetti Kiss lampshades this.)
Big Bad: Of the one hour special 'Enter The Dragon'.
The Dreaded: Po is about the only one who wasn't afraid of him, and that's only because of Po's Suicidal Overconfidence at the time. Even Shifu is afraid of him because Oogway almost was defeated by him. Of course exhausted at the end and he did gain a boost from the peach tree. The very fact that Ka Pa came so close to winning kept people fearing to deal face him.
Even Evil Has Loved Ones: His dialogue and rantings suggests that his regards towards the Underworld demons who serve him are more than as just mere cannon fodder, constantly referring to them as his brethren and even family. His Villainous Breakdown at the end suggests equal parts rage for failing to devastate the Valley of Peace and devastation at his minions' resealing.
Hero Killer: There's very good reason that Shifu is so fearful of him. He manages to temporarily kill Po
Killed Off for Real: Is obliterated by Po firing a massive blast of his Hero's Chi directly down his throat.
Knight of Cerebus: Manages to destroy the Jade Palace, burns half the village to the ground, and temporarily kills Po.
One-Winged Angel: When the peach tree dies, breaking his seal and setting him free.
A once noble and brave cobra who defended the land from evil-doers. He later turned renegade when he and his clan were betrayed and persecuted by others out of paranoia and hatred.
Affably Evil: Hatred towards non-snakes aside, Fu-xi was willing to defend Viper from a group of paranoid villagers and treats her like how a teacher treats a promising student when she pretends to join his side, even calling her "Little Sister". He even wished for her to rule the world by his side.
Emotion Bomb: Was planning to use his fear-inducing venom, already enhanced with Mu-tong root to make the effects permanent, to plunge the valley into madness and chaos by pouring it into the water supply.
Emotion Control: His venom fills his victims with temporary mind-numbing fear.
Snakes Are Abhorrent: Doubly subverted. Fu-xi was once a brave and noble warrior who defended China against all threats. However, when he and his kind were hunted down and killed by those they swore to protect out of fear, he develops a violent hatred towards all two-legged oppressors and believes the only way to defend snakes from further violence is by infecting the valley with his fear-induced venom and plunge it into chaos so that he and his kind can take control and rule China.
Roaring Rampageof Revenge: Wants to plunge China into permanent fear and madness in retaliation for persecution by "Two-leggers" against snakes.
Then Let Me Be Evil: After being betrayed after defending China, he became hateful towards all "Two-leggers."
Visionary Villain: Wants to restore justice, freedom and peace throughout the land for all snake kind by driving all non-snake kind insane with fear.
A goldfish as well as a strict Kung Fu Master who temporarily tutored Tigress in the episode "A Tigress Tale".
Badass: Mugan more than makes up for her arrogance by being an extremely powerful Kung Fu Master. Despite being a goldfish in a tank, her precision allows her to land cuts and blows to opponents with more strength and power than herself, such as Tigress and Po. Being a goldfish, her enemies also have a harder time trying to get a good hold on her. She probably would have defeated them if not for her former student turning on her at the right time by toppling the pillars holding her water bowls in her Kung Fu Dojo, giving her less room to fight until they trapped her under her central tank.
Control Freak: Is absolutely under the belief that Kung Fu must always be done with the greatest precision.
The Dog Bites Back: After suffering years of abuse with nothing to repay for his efforts but to be another one of her servants, Mugan's previous student Wu Yong finally stands up to his Kung Fu Master by knocking down the pillars holding the water bowls she uses to gain an edge against Tigress and Po. After being contained, he finally gains the courage to call her a big jerk in her face.
Dude, Where's My Respect?: Not from her but towards those she trains. Due to her obsession with discipline, she rarely (if ever) offers any compliments, praise, or positive critique. When Tigress demonstrated her Kung Fu for her, she calls her a powerful warrior. When Tigress was about to thank her for the acknowledgement of her abilities, Mugan quickly tells her that is was not a compliment. No matter how hard Tigress trained, she could never impress her. Most of her comments was for her students to push even further towards perfection until they are "broken" (as what happened to her other student, Wu Yong).
Killer Rabbit: She's a goldfish. A goldfish who also happens to be an unbelievably strict lethal Kung Fu Master that trains those under her tutelage until they're broken.
Lack of Empathy: Forced her previous student, Wu Yong, to focus on nothing but Kung Fu until his body broke under the strain (even during the training montage that focused up to that point she still continued to wear her signature haughty frown). She even has her servants carry the water tank she inhabited away from his broken body, completely indifferent to his plight. Afterward, he becomes another one of her servants.
The Perfectionist: Absolutely obsessed with discipline in Kung Fu, to the point that she will not even offer one bit of praise or encouragement to her students under her tutelage no matter how hard they train to please her (which is never).
Sadist: Strongly implied to be another reason why she is so harsh towards her students. When Tigress learns just how abusive a master she is from her previous student and tries to leave, Mugan locks her up in her training quarters and threatens right in her face that she will break her.
Training from Hell: Made her previous student train under her for years until he injured his leg trying to do pushups while carrying her on his back, leaving him too crippled to ever do any Kung Fu again.
The Svengali: Treats the students she tutors as possessions whose spirits and body need to be broken, not even having the decency to acknowledge or praise them when they try their hardest to meet her expectations.
Mei Ling the Rogue
Voiced by: Susanne Blakeslee
A kind, yet crafty fox who used to date Shifu years ago. However, Shifu learned she used her kung fu skills to steal, he broke up with her.
Shifu's estranged father and a skilled thief. Years ago, he took his son to the Jade Palace and told him to wait for him there while he went out. However, he never returned and Shifu was taken in by Oogway. Centuries later, he returned in search of his son and money.
Aww, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: Even though he held things against his father, Shifu still went out to rescue him. Some with his father. Despite his questionable morals, he has enough love in his heart to rescue his son.
Disappeared Dad: As mentioned before, he left his son to find some treasure. However, he reveals that he left him there on purpose because he wanted what was best for his son.
White and Grey Morality: He knows what is right and wrong and he will do either to get what he wants. He will use one of his son's students to get money, but he won't sell out his own son.
Paul RuggAn old master who spends every moment in a box sadan chair pondering kung fu, he is a wise and eccentric figure who is capable of performing feats that seem to be magic such as flight and freezing time.
Tohoru MasamotoA renegade samurai clam from Japan who sought to take over the nation. He comes to China in order to build an army with stolen gold in the episode "The Way of the Prawn".
Badass: Despite his small size and lack of conventional extremities, he can perform awesome feats of agility by hoping and rebounding lighting-fast around the battlefield to use his body as a bullet. He also can grapple with the edges of his shell to throw his enemies away. Po learns this the harder way when he tries to fight him and gets trashed without landing a strike.
Su, Wing, and Wan Wu form a trio of infamously deadly criminals. First appearing in the Kung Fu Panda video game, the sisters were conceptualized as characters for the first film, but were ultimately left out. They make their canon debut in Secrets of the Masters.