Fridge: Kung Fu Panda

Please add anything related to Kung Fu Panda 2 on its own page.

Fridge Brilliance:

  • When Po offers Tai Lung the Dragon Scroll, he looks at his own reflection and exclaims, "There's nothing!" However, Po beams, "No, it's just you" when he sees his own reflection.
  • While probably not intentional, Lord Shen's color motif marks well his status as a villain in an East Asian setting, as well as firmly a Light Is Not Good character. White is the color of death, which fits closely with his health issues, while red is associated with both blood (obviously), but also with the Vermillion Bird, who associated with fire and positive emotions (all he wants is the attention he never got from his neglectful family, hence love).
    • On that note, perhaps Tai Lung could be associated with the White Tiger, which is associated with autumn and metal. Tai Lung certainly has some personality traits associated with metal; he's ridiculously strong in both offense and defense, his major concern is perfecting his craftsmanship of Kung Fu by learning all of it, and his mindset is rigid and inflexible, to the point that he's not truly able to understand the Dragon Scroll. Tai Lung's return is viewed as "steadily impending doom/death," like autumn is sometimes seen (when not admiring the pretty colors). And, of course, his physical appearance somewhat matches the White Tiger. Hopefully this is a deliberate pattern on the part of the writers which will be continued in future movies...because that would be cool.
  • The main plot of the first film may be that Po is an Ascended Fanboy who is The Chosen One, but the film is really more about Shifu than Po. The first film dealt with him inheriting the role of master after Oogway's death, and thus he is to train the Dragon Warrior, whom he is refusing to BELIEVE is the Dragon Warrior. He had to learn to accept Po for who he is in order to properly train him, and in the process, Po trained him to be a better person and to find his inner peace. Thus, in the sequel, Shifu became a secondary, if not minor character, because it wasn't about him. It was about Po discovering himself.
  • If Shifu can be considered the main protagonist of the first film, then Shen can be considered his foil. Both tried to avert a prophesied disaster, but in doing so inadvertently caused said disaster to happen. Both also had an elder who watched over them during their development. However, where Shifu tried to keep Oogway from leaving and later held onto Oogway's teachings regardless of the circumstances (he obviously had no idea how to turn Po into the Dragon Warrior, even till the end), Shen sent away the Soothsayer and decided his own choices were better than hers. Bonus points since both elders could see the future, but only the pupil that listened was able to attain happiness.
  • The Holiday Special works on several wonderful levels - for one, it is the Chinese mid-winter solstice festival (unmistakably, but without ramming it down our throats); and secondly, Po gives an answer to the assembled Masters at the Jade Palace for his need to leave to get back to his Dad's noodle shop that, in Chinese culture, would excuse just about anything- "I need to go home, so I can be a good son." They all turn up at the noodle shop later, thinking that he's clearly made the right decision.
  • That Shifu's father was a con-artist highlights how Shifu taught Tigress to control her strength by playing dominos with her. Of course, they were blank wooden dominoes which are both easy to carry and remake in the case of accidental smashing, but it isn't exactly a stretch for con artists to fix gambling games.
  • Some have criticized the fight between Po and Tai Lung for how the latter was defeated by the former in spite of Po having just finished training. The answer is in the Wikipedia page about the Leopard Kung Fu: Tai Lung's style relies on speed, counterattacks (it has no blocks, as it prefers striking for defense), debilitating blows and outsmarting the opponent... And as it happens, Po is the worst possible opponent for Tai Lung: as pointed above, Po is capable of using Tai Lung's strength and speed against him, recoiling back from most if not all attacks and hitting Tai Lung hard; the recoiling counterattack is something that should be dodged or deviated, and Tai Lung's style has none of that; being massive, Po is extremely hard to take down with a debilitating strike (as best shown when Tai Lung used his nerve strike and Po was just tickled), and that's made worse by him knowing how to use that bulk in defense; finally, as a nearly obsessive kung fu fan, Po already knows where Tai Lung's strengths lie, while Tai Lung has no idea of what Po can do, so outsmarting him is difficult at best. And all of this is made worse by the fact Tai Lung was focused on the Dragon Scroll while Po was focused on taking down Tai Lung, and Po knew this: most of the fight is Tai Lung trying to get the Scroll while Po (whose first action was to dangle it before Tai Lung's nose) lands hit after hit in the most debilitating spots (even while they were rolling down from the stairs: during that fall, Po threw Tai Lung's head on the steps eight times before sitting on his head). By the time Tai Lung decides to focus on Po to have free access to the Scroll, he has endured over two minutes of one of the most savage beatings in the history of kung fu movies, and has barely enough times to show he could have won rather easily before his strength deserts him and Po (who is still mostly fresh) starts fighting him straight... And still concentrating on Tai Lung's head (by this time he probably has a concussion).
  • If you take a look at each of the Masters, each of them actually has a personality/way of talking/banter style based on their type of Kung Fu. Tai Lung hits you with hard verbal strikes at your weakpoints, Tigress hits you with an aggressive hard verbal blow, Viber is very gentle with her speaking and tends to make not to hurt anyones feelings, but can make a quick strike if you tick her off, and Po takes any verbal abuse and redirects it back at the opponent.
    • This is best exemplified at the beginning of fight between Po and Tai Lung. Tai Lung tries to hit Po where it hurts by making fun of his fat, but Po uses it to make a small Baddass Boast.
  • Noodles were really in his blood - when Po emerges from the smoke as the Dragon Warrior - he's wearing a wok on his head. Who said both destinies were mutually exclusive?
  • Po is not the Dragon Warrior for no reason. A virtue often associated to the Dragon animal form in Chinese martial arts is solidity, which is something Po thrives on.

Fridge Horror:

  • In the flashback in the first movie, when we see Shifu trying to fight Tai Lung, there's a scene where Tai Lung attacks Shifu's legs with a backhand, and a crack sound can heard. When we flash forward to him training Tigress, he's holding that reed/bamboo stick/whatever it is that he uses as a cane sometimes. Then you realise what that crack was: Shifu's legs breaking. A side strike to the legs like what Tai Lung used is fairly damaging if done right. Couple in their relative sizes, and you realise Tai Lung crippled his old master with a single strike.
    • Dear God.