(The following article should be best read while listening to this.) Zzz... *snort* Huh—what?! Who started up that music again? Can't an old ape get any peace and quiet around here?! Oh... it was one of you tropers again, eh? Jumping from page to page all day and night—drives an old ape to tears, really... Hold up — so you're actually here to learn about my history now, are ya? Well, it's about time, if I do say so m'self! Right — where to begin… Guess I'll start with my name. See here, most people these days know me as Cranky Kong—can't rightly imagine why, though. Thing is, the ape you're looking at was the original Donkey Kong — back when all it took was four frames of animation and an infinite supply of barrels to strike terror into the hearts of game players. Look at my no-good grandson (people think he's my son, but that's because those lazy boneheads at Nintendo couldn't keep consistency if their whole company depended on it), what with his tie-wearing, his bongo playing, his peg-swinging…! Sorry, sorry—lost my head there for a second. Let me start over from the beginning. So! It all began at the beginning of The '80s (that's nineteen 80's, if you didn't realize), the era where the video arcade was alive and thriving! Pac-Man was gorging himself on ghosts, dots, and cherries, the Space Invaders were upsetting the availability of Japanese yen, and…Radar Scope was crashing and burning—the latest in Japanese videogame developer Nintendo's attempts to break into the North American market. Things were getting desperate, so the president of the company—the late Hiroshi Yamauchi (may he rest in peace) asked Shigeru Miyamoto, who had been working at the company for just a few years on at that point, to design a game that the unsold Radar Scope units could be converted into. What the company needed (among other things) was their actual own stable of characters, after attempts to secure the Popeye license fell through. And that's where I come into this, finally! I was dreamed up by Mr. Miyamoto as an antagonist that's "nothing too evil or repulsive" (hmph), so I ended up in the form of an ape. Everything's Better with Monkeys, or so I keep getting told. Well, that's all fine and dandy. But how did I get named Donkey Kong? Monkeys aren't donkeys, after all. Well…he was over there in Japan, where they don't always speak English s'good. He wanted a name that gave the "stupid ape" impression (not going to say anything, nope nope nope), and he had a dictionary. Well, one thing lead to another, and Mr. Miyamoto used my name as the game's title, since I was the strongest character of the game. 'Course he did! Donkey Kong was a smash hit all over the world — and all because of me! I was what the kids called "OG" — Original Gorilla! I... sorry, lost myself again. The game itself was an exemplar of the great values of the old days of video gaming, where my rolling barrels, throwing jumping jacks, and…running a pie factory somehow…made the player, who controlled a goofy little character named "Jumpman", work and sweat and dump in quarter after quarter to get to the end of each level and the game. Yeah, yeah, he won, I lost. I took my beating like a champ, and was always ready for the next round, with the obstacles a little faster, the timer a little shorter, and the hapless sucker in a near-constant state of dread, hunched over the joystick and the buttons like a — never mind. After the success of my first game, I found myself a little woman to settle down with, and we had a son — m'boy, Donkey Kong Junior. For some reason, though, when Nintendo naturally called me back in to make the inevitable sequel to my first game, they decided to make me the one in distress by having that Jumpman character stick me in a cage, and make Junior the star! Pah, no respect, even then… still, I suppose the kid didn't do too bad a job for his first and only ever outing — poor Junior just couldn't hack it in the gaming industry. I had at least (at least!) one more game in me, so once again I came forward to make some poor sucker's life a living heck (pardon my language there) in a little game called Donkey Kong 3. Oh, you shoulda seen it — I was downright acrobatic, with me climbing all up and down, knocking around beehives and wasp nests, making my worthy opponent have to scramble to keep them away from his blooming flowers and spraying me up the butt to win the round... y'know, I think it was around then I wanted to take a breather from the spotlight. I was starting to feel my age a bit at that point, so I gave Nintendo my forwarding address if they needed me, and decided to pack up my family and move back to my home on Donkey Kong Island. Not much to say on that account; Junior grew up, married a local girl as they do, and had himself a son — that they named after his granddaddy, of course. Since I wouldn't let 'em forget how things used to be, they started to call me Cranky Kong — and that just made me more determined to give them an earful and then some! I think it was around that time that the wife said that she was going to pursue a career in teaching "like she always wanted" (coulda fooled me) and moved off to Crocodile Isle to open a franchise. Started working out too, which I think was due to my pet name for her — "Wrinkly Kong". What? It's cute! Then came the first Kremling war. Some no-good, slimy, scaly pirate crocodiles calling themselves the Kremlings invaded our island in the dead of night; they stole all of the Kong clan's precious bananas and beat up my grandson's pal, Diddy Kong. Turns out that DK told Diddy to guard the bananas as a part of his "hero training" and that he would take over at midnight, but that useless great lug slept through the whole thing. Of course, he tried to redeem himself the next morning by going out to rescue and team up with his buddy, beat up the bad guys, and get back our yummy yellow treats. I graciously offered the two advice and hints that were essential for them to progress through the game. Without it, I reckon they'd be in for a clobbering from those lizards and their leader, King K. Rool. After DK and Diddy managed to get the bananas back, the boys told me all about their little adventure. I admit they did a good job for their first outing, but it was only because of those fancy 3D graphics and that "Play It Loud!" nonsense that people bought the game in the first place. Of course, those two goons tried to convince me that wasn't the case and that it was "just plain fun", so I made a bet with them to go on an adventure (without the help of me or the other Kongs) on the original Game Boy, the very same handheld console that Nintendo had made a remake of me and Jumpman's first starring role on almost an entire year prior (That's right, I wore the tie long before that numbskull ever did). They took on the challenge, I made the arrangements, and even called K. Rool and his men to come and swipe the banana horde again! Much to my surprise, they managed to triumph over him once again. But of course, the stupid young lug didn't learn. He let his guard down and wound up getting himself kidnapped by K. Rool (in some tacky pirate getup) months later. Luckily for him, Diddy and that girlfriend of his decided to chase the Kremlings back to Crocodile Isle and get the great oaf back. I decided to give them my own hero training just to see how good they were, and challenged them along with a few others to recover a series of golden Hero Coins that I hid all over the island. Lucky for the little snots that my wife had set up her school there, on Crocodile Isle, and the soft-hearted old thing was willing to help save their game. She even went and offered tips for them — that was supposed to be my job! …Then again, she was smart enough to charge them coins for it. Wish I'd been that smart… never you mind! After the little chimps rescued that big knuckleheaded grandson of mine, the whole clan decided to head to the North Kremisphere for some well-earned vacations. My wife closed down her school and moved into some nice caves. Me? I decided it was time to get out some and do some training for my next game; if those punk kids could handle it, why, so could I! I also went all over the Kremisphere in Swanky Kong's new amusement park. Apparently, DK and Diddy got kidnapped by K. Rool, now a mad scientist, and the local Kremlings. Now Dixie and her baby cousin Kiddy had to rescue them along with all of those banana birds. Pah! What useless wimps. Still, I graciously deigned to let the two of them challenge me whenever they dropped by Swanky Kong's place. Things were admittedly a bit dull but peaceful for me for a while. My grandson finally met my old rival and started participating in his various activities, and Diddy had ventured off to Timber's Island to help out the local residents there. At this time, I had took a page from that has-been K. Rool and started studying science so I could make a potion that could whip me back into shape! …My wife… sigh… she passed on around this time... ahh, shut up! I'm not crying! Some time after all of that, K. Rool showed up again with some cheap knockoff version of Crocodile Isle, which had sunk a little while after the first time the big ape was rescued. This time, K. Rool was planning to blow up our island and he wasn't showing any mercy on anyone! DK, Diddy and three others of the clan went out and saved us — but they couldn't have pulled it off without the special ability-enhancing potions I brewed up for them, and that Rareware coin I made them earn with that Jetpac game! Eventually, some living instruments hypnotized the animals and stole my dumb grandson's bananas again. Him and his little buddy did some platforming stuff, while I converted my house into a flying shop to offer useful items. For a modest fee, of course. Then, just as we were settling down, some blasted Arctic hooligans kicked us out of our home! It was time I showed those horned whippersnappers a thing or two about invading an old ape's island. I made several cameos in those Smash Bros. games, too. I even appeared in the third and fourth games during my glory days in the 75m stage. My movement may have been limited, but it was fun smacking around the likes of Jumpman, my grandson and that "nephew" of his, that fire breathing turtle, that green-haired hoity-toity goddess and that little bodyguard of hers, that loudmouthed, birdbrained galoot and his Moveset Clone (Get it? Heh-heh), that sparky yellow varmint, the bipedal jackal who mutters about "aura", along with that psychokinetic sideshow, that broody punk with that oversized toothpick, that no hoper who didn't even bother collecting my Hero Coins, that shameless hussy who should be arrested for indecent exposure, that so-called arcade champ of the nineties, and even ol' Dot Muncher himself. I'll bring some real action next time 'round, just you wait and see! Now, I'm not in the mood to divulge any further on my past right now, so the rest of my tale will have to wait another day. Let's just get these tropes over and done with, alright?
Tropes that apply to me:
- Abnormal Ammo: Those dentures sure have bite to them.
- Badass Grandpa: I may be old, but I still got a lot of fight left in me!
- Cane Fu: Think it's just for show? Guess again.
- Cool Old Guy: Oh, you flatter me.
- Deadpan Snarker: Oh, really? I can't imagine why.
- Demoted to Extra: I played Swanky's Sideshow against those twerps Dixie and Kiddie in Donkey Kong Country 3... and who you calling "extra"?!
- Grumpy Old Man: Who you calling "grumpy", you disrespectful hooligans?!
- He Knows about Timed Hits: Someone told me that if you hold down the Y Button in Donkey Kong Country, you can run!
- Hidden Depths: I may not look like it, but I've got a pretty good singing voice. But not good enough for those chumps over at Nintendo to bother putting in their games, apparently.
- Hint System: In Donkey Kong Country, I'd give my no good grandson some advice as to how to get extra lives and discover some secrets.
- Mad Scientist: I was concocting potions in Donkey Kong 64! Wait… who you calling "mad"?! We used to respect our elders back in my day!
- Mighty Glacier: Sure, I'm not as spry as I used to be, but in Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, I'll bring plenty of attacks in!
- Nostalgia Filter: You whippersnappers don't know how good we had it back in my day! Our video game controllers weren't battery-powered — they plugged right into the console. And we liked it that way! And we didn't need the game to explain to us how it worked. That's what instruction manuals are for!
- Promoted to Playable: So you think I'm all talk, eh? Well, go play Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze and see how you'll think of me then!
- Retired Badass: You young'uns probably don't know this, but I was the original Donkey Kong in the arcade games.
- Screw Politeness, I'm a Senior!!: Hah-hah, You better believe it! It's you kids who really need to learn to be polite! Why in my day…
- This Cannot Be!: I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw those young'uns get over 2000 points on my Jetpac game!
- You Know What They Say: "…all graphics and no game play!"
I could tell you yarns about the old days all day long, but I'm getting tired. Gotta get my rest. Make sure to shut the gate on your way out. Were you raised in a barn?