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Gongmen City Council
Master Thundering Rhino
- "That is a warning. You are no match for our kung fu."
Voiced by:The benevolent leader of the Kung Fu Council, which protects the vast metropolis of Gongmen City. He has descended from a long line of masters and is the son of the legendary Master Flying Rhino.
- Advertised Extra: He was all over the official website and other advertisements. In the film itself, he gets a good three minutes of screen time before being killed off.
- Ascended Extra: He gets a much bigger role in Secrets of the Masters.
- Call-Back: He is the son of Master Flying Rhino, whose armor is stored in the Jade Palace, as mentioned in the first Kung Fu Panda movie.
- Character Death: Blown to bits by a giant cannon.
- Drop the Hammer: Wields a cloud hammer as his signature weapon. After his death, it's all that's left of him.
- Gentle Giant: Outside of battle, he is well known for his sense of humor and vast wisdom. This is backed up by his appearance in the Kung Fu Panda Holiday Special, where he happily regales a group of children with tales of his adventures.
- Gory Discretion Shot: You never actually see him get blasted, just the cannonball firing and the crater afterwards.
- The Juggernaut: Tigress says he is impervious to all techniques. This is why Shen does not use a technique.
- The Leader: Of the Kung Fu Council.
- 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.
- Sacrificial Lion: Killed off mainly to show that Shen means business.
- Stone Wall: His main strategy is to tank hits, as his skin is impervious to all techniques. But not to cannonballs...
- Tempting Fate: The above quote.
- Weapon Tombstone: His cloud hammer is planted in the crater let behind by Lord Shen's cannon. The villains left it there as a reminder of their weapon's power.
- "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: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.
- An Ax To Grind: His weapons used against Lord Shen.
- Awesome by Analysis: Is capable of analyzing his opponents weaknesses, but may not be able to capitalize on this information on his own.
- Dual Wielding: The above axes.
- Early-Bird Cameo: He's in Po's dream (as a bad guy) in the first film.
- Genius Bruiser: Despite his size and strength, his real specialty is analyzing his opponent's weaknesses at a glance.
- Heroic B.S.O.D.: After seeing the power Shen's weapon possesses and getting imprisoned, he and Croc decide they'd rather stay in a jail they could easily break out of. Shifu talks them out of it.
- Hair-Trigger Temper: Seems to lose his temper pretty easily as it doesn't take much for Shen to provoke him into attacking.
- Half-Dressed Cartoon Animal: He doesn't wear a shirt, though he does wear some kind of harness thing over his chest.
- A Load of Bull: His horns are his deadliest weapons.
- 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 cannon on the city.
- Top-Heavy Guy: How does he even stand?
- "The only hero in this town is a dead one."
Voiced by:A former bandit gang leader who had a change of heart and acts as a member of the Gongmen Kung Fu Council.
Jean-Claude Van Damme
Jean-Claude Van Damme
- Actor Allusion: When he arrives to fight the Wolf Army, he performs Van Damme's signature split kick.
- Badass Cape: Owned at least one in his lifetime.
- Beware My Stinger Tail: That big spiky ball on the end of his tail isn't just for show.
- Call-Back: He's the former leader of the Wool-Stealing Crocodile Bandits that Mantis battled in Secrets of the Furious Five.
- The Cameo: Returns in the third film as one of the masters who goes after Kai before becoming a jombie. The lack of Master Ox carries disturbing implications.
- Carry a Big Stick: A metal club he used against Lord Shen.
- 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. Later Retconned 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.
- 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.
- Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: One of his greatest victories was beating up a bunch of Badger Bandits for insulting his mother.
- Everything's Better with Spinning: Does a spinning leap out of the water when turning up to help the Five and Po. Presumably a reference to how crocodiles latch onto their prey and spin in the water to drown them.
- Fingerless Gloves: Wore a pair during his time as a street fighter.
- Glory Seeker: Out of the three masters in their youth, he sought fame above all else.
- Half-Dressed Cartoon Animal: Never seen with a shirt.
- Ink-Suit Actor: He looks like a crocodile version of Jean-Claude Van Damme.
- Made of Iron: His 'Impenetrable Hide'. Unfortunately, the rest of him isn't quite as durable.
- Not Even Bothering with the Accent: While KFP characters aren't exactly known for their authentic accents, Croc being inexplicably french stands out.
- 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.
- "Your story may not have such a happy beginning, but that doesn't make you who you are. It is the rest of your story, who you choose to be!"
Voiced by: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 genocide. She helps Po recover his forgotten memories of the tramatic event and helps him achieve inner peace by reminding Po of the wonderful life he's had despite the tragedy.
- Cool Old Lady: While helpful and funny, she replaces Oogway's serenity with a good dose of bluntness.
- Deadpan Snarker:Soothsayer: (telling Shen's fortune) I see...*plucks Shen's feather*...pain...
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.
- There's a question to whether she's even a captive. When the Soothsayer makes her final plea, he dismisses his parents (and her) as the past, then tells the guards to let her go because she's no longer relevant.
- Didn't See That Coming: A tragic one, as she notes that while she saw what would happen to Shen, she could have never predicted his reaction to it and is clearly remorseful for unintentionally instigating the genocide of the pandas.
- Everybody Calls Him "Barkeep": Her actual name is never revealed.
- Extreme Omni-Goat: Played with; although she does take a bite out of Shen's silk robe, close inspection reveals that it - and the feather she plucked - are dropped in her scrying bowl (using the magical principle of contagion.) But she must have liked the taste - or liked messing with Shen - because she keeps trying to go back for more.
- Girls with Moustaches: Or rather, a lady with a beard. Justified because she's a goat.
- The Good Chancellor: Loyally serves the rulers of Gongmen City, estranged son included.
- It's All My Fault: She blames herself for telling Shen a panda would stand in his way.Soothsayer: This was a thriving village. Young Shen was in line to rule Gongmen City. But he wanted more. I foretold that someone would stand in his way. A panda. But I never could have foretold what came next.
- Morality Pet: The only shred of Shen's conscience is how he acts around the Soothsayer.
- Neutral Female: Averted. She isn't physically capable of stopping Shen, but she regularly gives him the Kirk Summation or And Then What? as she tries to push him away from his Evil Plan. She also saves Po's life after finding him floating in the river haven taken a cannonball to the chest.
- Parental Substitute: To Shen. All There 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. When Shen first appears, notice there's a hopeful look from Soothsayer, before it collapses into annoyance because it's apparent Shen hasn't changed. She later begs Shen to not continue, knowing it'll be his undoing.
- Seer: Though she is a true seer, she does not prophesize on command or bother using her powers if the original prophecy has not changed. Instead, she states the obvious until Lord Shen gets mad.
- Suspiciously Similar Substitute: To Master Oogway.
- Unsettling Gender Reveal: Po mistakes her for a man when he first meets her. He claims the beard threw him off.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: She predicted that Shen would be defeated by a black and white warrior if he didn't renounce his current ways. Shen reacted by trying to exterminate all pandas to change his destiny.
- Visual Pun: She's a literal "old goat". Shen calls her such directly when he returns to Gongmen.
- We'll See About That: She gives this line to Shen when he returns from his exile.Shen: Ah, there you are, Soothsayer. It seems your fortune-telling skills are not as good as you thought.Soothsayer: We shall see, Shen.Shen: No, you shall see, old goat...
The previous rulers of Gongmen City. When their son Shen started to use the art of fireworks to create new destructive weapons, they became concerned for him and asked the Soothsayer to predict his future.
- Death by Despair: The Soothsayer reveals that the grief of having to banish their son for his crime ended up killing them.Soothsayer: It is time to stop this madness.Shen: [dismissive] Why on earth would I do that?Soothsayer: So your parents can rest in peace!Shen: My parents hated me, do you understand?! They wronged me, and I, I will make it right.Soothsayer: They loved you. They loved you so much that having to send you away killed them.
- The Good King: Their reign is said to have brought great joy and prosperity to Gongmen City.
- No Name Given: Their names are never revealed.
- Parental Abandonment: Subverted. Shen sees his banishment as an act of abandonment, but it turns out that they were justified in their decision to punish him, as he basically committed a genocide.
- Parents as People: They tried to raise their son well, but it's implied that they let the Soothsayer do a good chunck of the actual parenting and when their son basically committed a genocide they were left with no choice but banishing him as punishment.
- Posthumous Character: Both are long dead when the story begins and only appear in a flashback.
- Small Role, Big Impact: They only appear in one flashback at the beginning of the second movie, but they are the ones who asked the Soothsayer to predict their son's future. Had this prediction not happened, the events of the trilogy would have been very different.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: They only wanted to help their son change his ways by asking the Soothsayer to predict his future. The result... was not what they expected.
Lord Shen and His Army
- "Call in the wolves! All of them! I want them ready to move! The Year of the Peacock begins now!"
Voiced by:The Big Bad of the second film. He's a wicked peacock whose clan rules over Gongmen City. However, that wasn't enough for him as 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: Perfect Pun aside, by the time the credits roll, you will believe a peacock can be a skilled fighter and a cruel and terrifying villain.
- Ambition Is Evil: Ever since Shen became obsessed with his invention, he desires power for the sake of power. When Soothsayer points this to him, Shen sort of admits that he doesn't really know what he's going to do with all this power if he succeeds at taking over China, but immediately shrugs the thought off.
- And Then What?: The Soothsayer asks him if conquering China and destroying kung-fu will finally make Shen happy. Shen is clearly shocked, never having considered what he'll do after he's done conquering and if it will even be worth everything he's lost, but is quick to push away his doubt.
- Audible Sharpness: His many bladed weapons.
- Awesome, but Impractical: His cannons. Yes, they're extremely powerful and can overpower and kill kung fu masters, but they have a number of tactical flaws.
- They require a lot of metal to forge. Shen's soldiers have to steal pots and tools from the farthest villages in order to find enough metal.
- They're extremely heavy and difficult to transport, as seen when two gorilla mooks complain about having to move one a little to the left.
- They're slow and hard to aim. Even Po can run faster than the wolves can move and aim the cannons, and takes advantage of this fact during the final battle to confuse them.
- The above also means that they can only hit stationary or immobilized opponents, and firing one into a crowd will kill unintended targets. Wolf Boss recognizes this and refuses to fire at Po when it means his own soldiers would be caught in the crossfire.
- And—although Shen had no way of anticipating it—they are useless against an opponent who has some way of redirecting the cannonballs...such as, say, a kung fu warrior who has mastered inner peace.
- 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 committing genocide, which he sincerely thought would make his parents proud.
- As befitting the most Ax Crazy villain in the movies, Lord Shen is the only character seen who unambiguously kills someone on-screen. Though Tai Lung's escape from prison is very heavily implied to have killed most, if not all, of the guards, we never see a dead rhino on screen. However, there is no cutaway when Shen throws his knives into Wolf Boss's throat and watches him fall overboard.
- Badass Bookworm: Studied gunpower from fireworks to make his cannons.
- Badass Long Robe: His clothes, plus his tail feathers.
- Badass Mustache: Two thin feathers grow from the corners of his beak, resembling a Fu Manchu mustache.
- Bad Boss: Was not the least bit hesitant to fire at his own men to defeat Po and the Five.
- 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.
- Big Bad: Of the second film.
- Big Ol' Eyebrows: Of the "match-the-width-of-his-shoulders-so-he-can-fit-through-gaps" variety.
- Blade on a Stick: His signature close-quarter combat weapon is his halberd.
- Break Them by Talking: Successfully does this to Po in the Fireworks Factory.
- The Cameo: Briefly appears in the third film in the same flashback from the end of the second.
- 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 deal with kung fu masters he can't beat one-on-one. When confronted with a fight he can't possibly win, against 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.
- Contrasting Sequel Antagonist: Tai Lung was a physically formidable Kung Fu fighter and an One-Man Army who worked alone and who's main goal was to get the Dragon Scroll. Shen is physically smaller but a genius noble who has an army to do his bidding, and his goal is to destroy Kung Fu and take over China. While Tai Lung didn't have any kind of past history with Po, the conflict with Shen becomes more of a personal matter to Po due to Shen's connection with his past.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: Using a cannon to win a fight certainly helps. It's not treachery, it's pragmatism!
- Dark and Troubled Past: No one approved of his life goal of creating the cannon. Not even his own parents, who then consulted a soothsayer, who then predicted that should he not turn away from his ambitions, he would meet his death at the hands of a panda. This spurred him into committing genocide, and he was exiled for it.
- If one takes into account his expanded backstory it's even worse: Shen was born ill and his parents were so ashamed they left him in the care of the Soothsayer (this aspect can still be seen in the way Shen tolerates the Soothsayer's attitude and when he lets her go).
- Death by Irony: He's flattened by his own invention.
- Dirty Coward: Subverted. 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.
- Epic Flail: Uses a meteor hammer to incapacitate Master Ox at one point.
- Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: The Soothsayer effectively raised him, and he clearly cares about her to some extent, albeit not enough to stop his plans. 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.
- Evil Counterpart:
- To Po. Both have parental abandonment issues and are real animals likened to mythical beasts (Po the Panda is the Dragon Warrior, while Shen the peacock is clearly meant to be a phoenix with his passion for fire). Both are nervous and unsure of themselves, having many a Failed Attempt at Drama moment. Both are black-and-white animals who are (apparently) the last of their kind, and both fight using unconventional methods. They achieved their places of power by using fireworks and by defeating highly skilled masters (Tai Lung and the Masters' Council) who stood in their way. Both their destinies were set in motion when the Soothsayer predicted their eventual conflict, and both sought inner peace to deal with their tragic pasts. However, while Po was able to move on from the tragedies of his past, Shen was unable to do so and found only defeat.
- 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 China and casually kills because he has done too much harm, come too far to stop, and has nothing else left in his life.
- Though they never interact with each other, Shen can be seen as Master Shifu's villainous foil. They both had a clairvoyant elder who watched their development (the Soothsayer and Master Oogway) and who foretold a disaster (Shen's demise and Tai Lung's return). Both proteges then tried to avert said disaster, only to inadvertently cause it to happen. Like with Shifu in the first movie, Shen's present is influenced by the pains of the past, making him demanding and biased, with his high expectations in regards to his subordinates mirroring those of Shifu with his students. In particular, neither of them believed initially that someone like Po could be a mighty warrior, only for the determined panda to defy their expectations. Their main difference is in regards to the advice offered to them by their mentors; Shifu didn't want Oogway to leave and afterwards respected his master's wish to train Po despite his doubts, but Shen eventually sends the Soothsayer away when he decides he can't find happiness from her advice. Shifu ultimately found inner peace by listening to Oogway while Shen could find peace only in death through his own self-destructive decisions.
- Evil Genius: He discovered that fireworks could also serve as gunpowder, and then invented the cannon to put that discovery to use.
- Evil Is Burning Hot: He is strongly associated with fire and bright light—his smoking forges and torches, his fireworks factory, his cannon that "breathes fire and spits metal", and his burning of the panda village. At one point, he even lights his sword aflame in a burning brazier and uses it to incinerate a map of China as a symbol of his Evil Plan.
- Evil Old Folks: He was banished as an adult when Po was a baby, and took thirty years to ready his forces. This puts him within his fifties at least during the film.
- Evil Tower of Ominousness: His home in Gongmen City, which he's shown perching atop of during a travel montage.
- Evil Plan: Take over China and destroy Kung Fu while he's at it.
- Face Death with Dignity: When his cannon is about to fall on him, he just closes his eyes and accepts it.
- Failed Attempt at Drama: He has his moments.
- Faux Affably Evil: He's polite, well-spoken, and composed... until something gets him angry, when he shows the true Ax-Crazy monster beneath it all.
- Feathered Fiend: Well, he is voiced by Gary Oldman, who (according to Celebrity Deathmatch) "can go from zero to psycho in 2.5 seconds".
- Feather Fingers: Uses them for his knife throwing.
- Feather Flechettes: Averted. He doesn't actually attack with his feathers, but rather with throwing knives concealed by his feathers. Still invoked symbolically, because his knives have patterns carved on them to resemble feathers.
- Feather Motif: Peacock feathers symbolize vainglory, especially appropriate for Lord Shen. Unlike normal peacock feathers, however, his are white and red, for madness and death.
- Fighter, Mage, Thief: The Thief to Tai Lung's Fighter and Kai's Mage.
- 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.
- Flight: He's a bird (peafowls can fly, though not very long nor far). The only time he uses this ability, however, is to run away. He "flees" or "flew", if you will, thus putting the term "flight" in a different light. Confused yet?
- Fragile Speedster: Physically frail, but blindingly fast when the situation requires it: he can cover short to moderate distances in an instant. Paired with his Knife Nut skills, his speed makes him an extremely dangerous opponent.
- 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.
- Furry Reminder: He occasionally lets out a peacock scream.
- Genocide Backfire: Shen overhears a prophecy that he will be defeated by "a warrior of 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.
- 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.
- 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 like joy and luck in Chinese imagery, his red motif can also be seen as a distortion of his relationship with his parents.
- Good Scars, Evil Scars: His feet are covered in burn scars from weapon forging. He partly hides them with his metal talons.
- 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.
- I Just Want to Be Loved: Gary Oldman mentions this in an interview.
- I've Come Too Far: It's implied that this is the reason why he feels compelled to go on with his evil instead of repent.Shen: (solemnly) The dead exist in the past, and I must tend to the future.
- It's Personal: Played with. Shen expects this of Po. He ordered the panda genocide, and even has the implied circumstances that he personally had a hand in killing Po's mother. However, when Shen actually meets Po, he's surprised and extremely amused that Po has no idea of what Shen did. And then at the end, when Po finally does know what happened, he's not interested in revenge on Shen at all, instead finding inner peace because of knowing it.
- Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: The introduction shows him to be experimenting with a more destructive side of fireworks, which isn't downright evil in itself ... until the genocide happened.
- Killer Rabbit: Who knew a peacock could be such a threatening, efficient villain?
- 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. Tai Lung was little more than an arrogant, swaggering thug; Shen is a mass-murdering warlord.Shen: Kill him, somebody kill him!
- Large Ham: He has his moments. Here's his voice actor hamming it up while recording him in the studio.
- Last Villain Stand: He spends the entire film running from a direct confrontation with Po because of the Soothsayer's prediction. In the end, after he's killed his own second-in-command, had everything he built be obliterated before his eyes, and Po tries to impart to Shen the secret to inner peace, he finally stops running and fights Po with everything he has if only out of pure anger.
- 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.Shen [to Po]: Your parents didn't love you.
- Meaningful Name:
- One of the meanings of "Shen" (神) is "divinity", which relates to his quest for power and attention.
- An alternate reading of Shen (焴) is "flame", which connects to his cannons.
- The Book of Lord Shang anyone?
- 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 recognize 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 as punishment. Even more so because being banished as opposed to being executed may have been an act of mercy on their part.
- 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.
- Pet the Dog:
- He lets the Soothsayer go, unharmed, with no selfish intent behind it. Indeed, he never harms her, in spite of the attitude she gives him (and the fact that she keeps eating his clothes).
- He was also rather kind to the wolves in his youth, which is what made them swear their loyalty to him. Of course, one could argue that this was all he was really after, as he's not so kind to them in the present. However, given his slow and gradual decay, it could also be argued that he once legitimately used to be A Father to His Men, at least before his Villainous Breakdown.
- The Phoenix: What he is meant to symbolize.
- Razor Wings: His throwing knives are in the shape of feathers to help him conceal them, and he also uses his tailfeathers as a weapon and distraction similar to what real life martial-arts styles with metal folding fans do.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Aside from his regular eyes, the eyespots on his tail are also red, reflecting his Evil Albino status.
- Serrated Blade of Pain: Both his Blade on a Stick and sword have wavy edges,
- 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-Fulfilling Prophecy: Had Shen not killed the panda village, his nemesis would never have had any reason to go after him, let alone become the Dragon Warrior.
- 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.
- Signature Move: Throws a quick flurry of knives, accompanied by a staccato whirring noise.
- Sinister Scraping Sound: Shen's walking is accompanied by his metal talons scraping the ground.
- Soft-Spoken Sadist: For the most part, he's very calm, cool, and collected, and his voice is usually monotone.
- Sorting Algorithm of Evil: A clear step above Tai Lung, not in skill, but in overall threat level.
- Start of Darkness: He discovered a practical use for fireworks and subsequently became obsessed with it.
- Super OCD: He wants everything to be perfect. He practices his Pre Ass Kicking One Liner before meeting Po and demands his weapon be placed "a little to the left."
- Third Time's the Charm: Po confronts him three times throughout the film (tower, factory, harbor) before finally getting over his Heroic B.S.O.D. and defeating him.
- 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.
- Tranquil Fury: After Po decimates his armada and proceeds to lecture him about his inner pain, his rage finally breaks and he begins fighting Po to the death with only a Death Glare to show his anger.
- Twitchy Eye: Who could also be an Actor Allusion: Gary Oldman previously voiced Ruber who had the same tic.
- Unstoppable Rage: After Po destroys his fleet, Shen goes into a very calm rage and attacks Po with the intent to kill him. However his rage also speeds along his death as in his fit of anger he cuts a cannon loose, which falls and crushes him.
- Vile Villain, Saccharine Show: If you've made it this far, you should know why.
- Villain Has a Point: Shen has a smaller example of this when Po tries to tell him to let go of his past, correcting the panda that it's wounds that heal rather than scars.
- Villainous B.S.O.D.: 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 B.S.O.D., 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.
Lord Shen: Keep firing! KEEP FIRING!!
- Best summed up in his rant during the final battle:
- Weak, but Skilled: Physically unimpressive, but man, can he hurl blades with the best of them.
- "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, claiming 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.
- White Hair, Black Heart: It's implied in background material that the former is partially responsible for the latter.
- Why Won't You Die?: He never says this outright, but his shouted orders to his gun crews after Po starts deflecting cannonballs hints that this is his mindset:Lord Shen: Kill him! Somebody KILL him!!
Lord Shen: How many times do I have to kill the same stinking panda?
- A straighter version of the trope occurs when Shen witnesses Po's return to Gongmen City.
- Walking Armory: He always carries a large amount of knives and wears metal claws on his feet. Besides that, he uses a Blade on a Stick and a meteor hammer at different points. He also uses a sword against Master Ox and Master Croc.
- Wolverine Claws: Shen wears metal talons for both combat and to cover up the burn scars on his feet. They also resemble the ornaments Chinese nobles wore to protect their long nails.
- You Cannot Fight Fate: Played with. It was predicted that a "warrior of black and white" would defeat him, but it was also mentioned that he could change his fate if he stopped his destructive ways.
- "Guess nobody told you: If you mess with the wolf, you get the fangs."
Voiced by:Lord Shen's oldest (and probably only) friend and most loyal servant. He is the commander of the wolf army.
- Adorkable: For being a brutal warrior, he has many dorky features, like whimpering when his toe is stomped or annoying Shen with out of place comments. See also Trash Talk below.
- Authority Equals Asskicking: He's the best fighter among the wolves.
- Barefoot Cartoon Animal: Him and every other wolf.
- The Brute: Strong, not very bright, and has only rudimentary kung fu skills.
- Character Death: 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.
- If he did die, that would make him the only character to be murdered on-screen in the 3 primary movies and 1 of only two (the other being Oogway) to die onscreen rather than being killed off-screen or kicked/punched out of frame. The movies usually cut away just before the moment of death.
- Combat Pragmatist: Aside from being a dirty fighter, he also knows when to strategically retreat.
- Comically Missing the Point: Prone to this. When Shen tells him that the "year of the peacock" has begun, he gets confused because it's already the middle of the year.
- Dark Is Evil: Dark grey fur and armor.
- The Dragon: To Lord Shen.
- Drop the Hammer: Occasionally uses a giant war hammer as a weapon.
- 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.
- Expy: Of Wolf O'Donnell. Wolf? Check. Mohawk? Check. Bad eye? Check, and points for being the same eye. Shoulder spikes? Check. Hell-Bent for Leather? Check. A natural leader who is himself The Dragon to someone else? Check. Even Evil Has Standards? Total check.
- 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.
- Unlike Wolf O'Donnell, he does not serve for money but rather out of loyalty to Lord Shen. He is not particularly skilled at his "profession" and he isn't overly smart.
- 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 hammer.
- 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.
- Family-Unfriendly Violence: The whole "eye ripped out with a hammer" thing isn't very kid-friendly either.
- A Father to His Men: He stands up to Shen for ordering him to fire on his own men, and gets killed for it.
- Handicapped Badass: He lost one eye during the attack on the panda village, after Po's father smashed his face with a hammer. Despite this, he can still fight well.
- Hell-Bent for Leather: Dressed (almost) entirely in leather armor.
- Kick the Dog: Not above throwing innocent bystanders in front of danger to slow down his foes. He even throws children.
- Large and in Charge: He's a good deal larger than all of the other wolves, making him easily stand out.
- Laughably Evil: He's really more comic relief than anything.
- Logical Weakness: Wolves operate as a pack, so he's not much of a threat when he's alone. When he faces Po with only two mooks and they're instantly taken out by Monkey and Crane, he says, "uh-oh" and runs for it.
- No Name Given: He is only listed as "Wolf Boss" in the credits. That's what he does.
- Noble Wolf: One would think he would belong to Savage Wolves for the villainy but as stated above he's similar to Po and has a solid pack oriented mentality.
- Not-So-Harmless Villain: Given his more comedic nature, it's easy to forget that he was at the forefront of the panda genocide and in fact would've killed Po if not for his dad stepping in.
- Papa Wolf: Since the alpha male of a wolf pack is also the father of many members, it could apply.
- Pet the Dog: He refuses to fire on his own men in the final battle, and takes a knife or five to the throat for it.
- Savage Wolves: Despite having a code of honor, he's still The Dragon of Shen and is willing to threaten innocents.
- Spell My Name with an "S": While the credits refer to him as Wolf Boss, Fanon often switches it around and calls him Boss Wolf instead. Probably because it sounds closer to an actual name.
- Even the official art book calls him Boss Wolf, so apparently the creators use it too.
- Spikes of Villainy: Has a couple on his armor. His fur is also a bit on the spiky side.
- Stupid Sexy Flanders: 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.
Po's biological mother, who sacrificed herself to save her son from Lord Shen.
- Big Eater: Li Shan mentions she had a tremendous appetite in the third film.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Hides Po in a radish crate to protect him from Shen's wolves. Unlike Li, she doesn't make it out of this.
- Light Is Good: During Po's flashback of her, she's litterally glowing a golden light.
- Mama Bear: A literal example, since she is a panda bear; she made sure Po was in a relatively safe place before pulling her Heroic Sacrifice.
- No Name Given: Is only known as Po's mother.
- Nothing Is Scarier: Her death isn't actually shown. All you see is her running off-screen, chased by Shen and his wolves, then the scene just fades away over the sound of Po's crying. Though if you listen closely, just after Shen is shown you hear the characteristic noise of Shen throwing his flurry of knives.
- Posthumous Character: Is long dead by the start of the series and is only seen in flashbacks.
- The Voiceless: Doesn't say a word throughout any of her brief appearances. Po's dream version of her does speak, but it's only Jack Black doing an intentionally-poor feminine voice.