Long ago, a peacock named Lord Shen (Gary Oldman) sought to harness the power of fireworks for a more practical use in weaponry, a cannon. His worried parents, the rulers of Gongmen City, consulted a Soothsayer, who foretold that Shen would be defeated by "a warrior of black and white". To prevent this, Shen destroyed an entire nearby panda village, and returned home expecting appreciation, but his parents were struck with horror and exiled him. Shen, however, swore revenge and vowed to return to the city to complete his invention and see that the prophecy would not be fulfilled.
In the present day, Po, now a highly skilled Dragon Warrior and the sixth member of the Furious Five, is trying to learn "inner peace" from Master Shifu. They're interrupted when a gang of wolves attack a village in search of metal to help in making Lord Shen's cannon, which, if successful, will make kung fu obsolete. Po and the Furious Five set out for Gongmen City to stop the wicked peacock. Along the way, Po learns about how he was adopted, and why.
Considered one of DreamWorks' finest films, Kung Fu Panda 2 became one of the highest grossing films of all time to be directed solely by a woman.
The DVD release came with a short titled Secrets of the Masters detailing the backstories of Masters Ox, Croc, and Rhino. In 2015, another prequel short titled Secrets of the Scroll was released, telling the story of how the Furious Five met each other. A sequel titled Kung Fu Panda 3 was released on January 29, 2016.
For character tropes, see the Character Page.
Kung Fu Panda 2 provides examples of:
- Absurdly Long Stairway: Po and the Furious Five are taken to Lord Shen's throne room at the top of a tall tower. Po has to be carried by one of Shen's guards for half of the way.
- Acoustic License: An aversion played for laughs. After Lord Shen has shot Po with a cannon, he sails his ships to open sea in order to conquer all of China. Then he sees Po atop a roof far away. Po stands heroically and then starts giving an inspiring speech... except no-one can hear a thing he's saying because Po is talking in a normal tone of voice and standing too far away for Shen to understand him. After a few confused "What?"'s, Shen gives up trying to understand Po and just orders his troops to fire.
- Acrofatic: Po exemplifies this trope.
- Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene: Two major examples: the nighttime boat scene that shows how close as friends Po and Tigress have become, and Po and the Soothsayer in Po's home village where he remembers his horrific past and comes to terms with it.
- Action Girl: Tigress and Viper.
- Actionized Sequel: While the original is an action movie, there is a LOT more here thanks to Po getting out of training.
- Adult Fear:
- Po's fear that his real parents abandoned and replaced him, as anyone who's adopted could attest to.
- Ping's fear that Po rediscovering his real parentage will make him not view him as his father any more, as anyone who's adopted children will attest to.
- There's also the fact that Po, Ping's only son (even if it's adopted), went off to fight against a lethally skilled warlord, in a city far from home. Mr Ping's breakdown near the end of the film can be quite the tear jerker for parents with their own kids who have dangerous jobs.
- For Shen's parents, they discover that their son launched a genocidal campaign against an innocent village of pandas. Due to The Chains of Commanding, they have to exile him, and as the Soothsayer puts it, the very act killed them. And that all started because Shen reacted badly to their disapproval of his dreams of inventing the cannon, and that they weren't careful enough that Shen overheard the prophecy foretelling his doom, which spurred his actions in the first place.
- Advertised Extra: Master Thundering Rhino is shown in the website and press release. In the actual movie, he barely gets two minutes of screentime before Shen kills him. Masters Storming Ox and Croc have somewhat larger roles, but not by much.
- Adults Are More Anthropomorphic: Baby Po looks similar to a Nearly Normal Animal unlike his Funny Animal adult form.
- An Aesop:
- If you had a sad/difficult beginning to your life, it doesn't make you who you are. What matters is the rest of your life: who you choose to be.
- Someone who's raised you and loved you since you were a child counts as your father/mother, even if you're not related.
- Alas, Poor Villain:
- Lord Shen. After a very miserable and empty life, he finally faces the warrior destined to defeat him whose entire species he tried to destroy... and the warrior has found inner peace, and doesn't want revenge. He cannot grasp how that is, how he could be free of all that pain, and tries one last time to kill him... only to accidentally kill himself. But he accepts it gracefully, because death is the only peace he could find.
- Also, the Boss Wolf. He follows Shen's orders without hesitation or mercy, but when Shen orders him to fire the cannon at the heroes, not caring that their own soldiers would be killed in the crossfire, Boss Wolf refuses. Enraged, Shen strikes Boss Wolf with his throwing knives and fires the cannon himself.
- All There in the Manual: The movie's official website offers far more detailed information about all the new characters, especially Lord Shen. Lord Shen's motivations seem much more simpler in the movie proper. This leaves out the fact that his parents were ashamed of his albinism and poor health, and often left him to the care of his soothsayer nanny. The context puts a very different spin on some of the exchanges between Shen and Po: the movie only shows Shen's parents looking understandably horrified at the destruction of the Panda village, and Shen only references being wronged by the exile. You can see traces of this whenever the soothsayer gives Shen a hard time and he only responds with angry words; when Po unintentionally insults her, Shen loses his temper; and Shen simply sets the soothsayer free before starting his campaign.
- Amazingly Embarrassing Parent: Ping when he packs Po a backpack with embarrassing old paintings and Po's action figures of his teammates... in front of his teammates.
- Analogy Backfire: Played with. When Po claims that "scars heal", Shen attempts to call him on this. Po's response, "Oh yeah what do scars do? They fade, I guess." is, if anything, more accurate to the situation.
- Animate Inanimate Object: The radish that Po's parents replaced him with in his dream sequence. It can do kung fu, too.
- Arc Symbol: The red-eye-with-rays symbol for Po, and the Yin-Yang symbol for Shen. Po grows, and the eye symbol stops holding any fear for him. Shen doesn't, and Po eventually takes on the yin-yang symbol as he wipes out Shen's gunships with their own cannonballs.
- Arc Words:
- "Who are you?"/"Who am I?"
- "Your story may not have such a happy beginning..."
- Arrow Catch: Tigress dodges a bunch of arrows and catches the last one an inch from her cheek. Bonus points for the arrows being on fire. More bonus points for the fact that she wasn't even looking at it and didn't seem all that concerned by it, as she does it completely offhandedly.
- Artistic License Biology:
- Both of Shen's parents are referenced as peacocks. Peacocks are called peacocks because they are male. A female peafowl would be a peahen. Gets jarring in that Shen's mother was shown as a genuine peahen, namely lacking the train characteristic for males.
- Lord Shen uses his tail to help him glide a long distance. While peacocks can fly short distances, this is done with their wings, not their tail. Then again, pandas can't do kung fu, so...
- Lastly, in regards to peacocks, they only have their trademark, gorgeous tail feathers for a few months during spring time for mating purposes, yet Shen in the film, in both the present and in flashbacks, seem to permanently boast his, which makes sense as they're part of the factor that makes Po remember his past and it would serve no narrative purpose for Shen to shed the feathers.
- Art Shift: The movie is primarily filmed in CG, but the opening prologue is shot in a style resembling metal shadow puppets, and Po's dreams and memories are animated traditionally (though the memories become 3D CGI once Po fully recalls them).
- Ascended Fanboy: Even though Po is now The Dragon Warrior, he still treasures his Furious Five action figures, and still gushes like a kid about everything related to kung fu, even while being captured.Po: No way! Eight-point acupressure cuffs? Just like the ones that held Tai Lung! The more you move, the tighter they get... YAAH! [gets yanked to the ground] These are the best cuffs!
- Ash Face: Happens to Mantis when he tests a small amount of gunpowder.
- Attack! Attack! Attack!: Shen decides to blast everything in his path. Ironically, that's how he meets his defeat.
- Attack! Attack... Retreat! Retreat!: When the Furious Five attempt to bring down Shen's cannon factory.Monkey: [after dropping a dozen barrels of lit explosives] Here's your New Year's gift!
Mantis: Hope you like it, 'cuz you can't return it!
Tigress: [hears Po scream and sees him fighting Shen inside] Po!? What's he doing here?
Monkey: Return it! Return it! [starts snuffing out the burning barrels]
- Audible Sharpness: All of Shen's blade weapons.
- Awesome, but Impractical: Turns out Shen's cannons can be a pain to aim at moving targets.
- Awful Truth: Subverted in that Po is determined to find out what happened to his biological parents, and only Big Bad Lord Shen knows (besides the Soothsayer). As such, Po screws up a chance for the Five to destroy the cannon foundry to face the peacock, only to have him claim his parents abandoned him because they didn't love him. Of course, that's a blatant lie.
- Badass Boast:
- "I am Po. And I'm gonna need a hat." It Makes Sense in Context.
- Hilariously parodied later on when Po makes his epic return and attempts this trope towards Shen. Problem is, he's standing too far away for Shen to hear him.Po: Shen! A panda stands between you, and your—
[cuts to Shen's POV who only hear indistinct shouting]
Po: Prepare yourself, for a—
[another cut to Shen who exchange confused looks with the Wolf Boss as they still can't hear him]
- Badass Crew: With Po as the new addition to the team, the Furious Five are, if possible, even more badass than in the first film with all the crazy combo moves they show off in this film.
- Badass in Distress: The Furious Five near the end of the movie. While Po is presumed dead, they all end up as Shen's prisoners.
- Bait-and-Switch: When Shen sees his father's throne again after years of exile, he reminisces about how his father let him play beside it and how he'd be told that one day the throne would be his. Cue the throne being thrown out of the window and replaced by Shen's cannon.
- Bait-and-Switch Comment: After finding baby Po abandoned in a (now empty) box of radishes, Mr Ping makes a monumental decision... to make his soup without radishes. And raise Po as his son.
- Bamboo Technology: Literally! Shen's cannon foundry features, among other things, a bamboo Conveyor Belt o' Doom.
- Battle Discretion Shot: Po and the Five, hidden in a huge dragon costume, pull several wolf Mooks inside and rough them up before kicking them out the back, turning a string of rapid beatdowns into Toilet Humor.
- BFG: Lord Shen's big freakin' cannons. Which shoot exploding cannonballs.
- Big Bad: Lord Shen.
- Big Damn Heroes:
- Po, near the end of the film, coming to rescue the Five and stop Shen.
- Master Shifu and Masters Croc and Ox, shortly afterward, coming to help Po and the Five.
- Po's father in Po's flashback when two wolves were about to attack baby Po.
- Big Eater:
- Baby Po, which Mr. Ping points out repeatedly as he fed the cub multiple times in a single day. Then there was the time he ate all the bamboo furniture...it was imported, too.
- Subverted by present Po. Every time Po's father offers him a hearty meal, he refuses, and is generally shown to be much less of a glutton than in the first movie. Po eats when he's upset. As the Dragon Warrior, he's happier than he's ever been.
- Big "NO!": By Tigress when Po is hit by Shen's cannon-fire.
- Bilingual Bonus: During the end credits montage of Po's childhood in the Valley of Peace, one scene shows him attending school. In the background, there is a blackboard with the Chinese characters for 1 to 10 on it (一, 二, 三, 四, 五, 六, 七, 八, 九, 十).
- Bittersweet Ending:
- Leaning a bit more towards sweet. However, even though Po has managed to save the day, he still believes that the rest of his kind is gone. And though the audience knows that is not the case, and that Po's father finally knows his son is alive, they are still miles apart from each other, and the remaining pandas, while managing to repopulate, have fled in exile from the rest of the world to seek safety.
- The fate of the villains in this movie also add to the bittersweet-ness of the ending. Yes, they were defeated, but they were more than just Punch Clock Villains, and Shen himself was a Tragic Villain who only wanted to achieve his dreams and make his parents proud — but failed utterly in accomplishing either.
- Blade on a Stick: When not using cannons or flurries of throwing knives, Lord Shen fights with a modified guan dao, the Chinese equivalent of a naginata or halberd.
- Blatant Lies: Shen's claim to Po that he was abandoned because his parents didn't love him. Shen's belief that his parents hated him being the main source of his anguish, he turns this on Po as it's the most painful thing Shen can imagine.
- Blind Musician: The rabbit who keeps playing music during the fight scene in the Musicians' Village seems to be blind, since he's wearing dark glasses and doesn't react to any of the violence happening around him. Which may be a Shout-Out to the wuxia film Hero, which has a similar scene where two martial artists square off with a blind musician providing accompaniment.
- Blue and Orange Morality: Mantis' mother ate his dad's head before he was born, but he sees nothing strange in this since this is normal for his species. He even imagined himself dying like this.Mantis: I thought I'd meet a nice girl, settle down, and then she'd eat my head.
- Bond Villain Stupidity: When the Furious Five and Po are all Shen's prisoner, he has them brought before him so he can gloat and then kill them dramatically with his giant cannon, instead of just having them efficiently killed, which gives them a chance to escape. Later, when everyone thinks Po is dead and he has the Five captive again, he keeps them alive to witness his triumph, which gives Po time to recover and come to their rescue.
- Boring, but Practical: By the final battle, Po figures out a way to negate Shen's cannons. Dodging. Mixed with his new Catch and Return technique and he decimates Shen's fleet.
- Broken Ace: Po when he learns he was adopted and his entire family of pandas was wiped out by Lord Shen.
- Break Them by Talking: When Po confronts Shen in the foundry, the peacock manages to gain the upper hand by claiming that Po's parents didn't love him and abandoned him.
- Brick Joke: When entering the prison, Monkey promises to warn the Furious Five with a "Caw-CAW!" to which it is pointed out how much it sounds like Crane, who protests by saying he never says that. At the finale of the film, Crane uses his "Wings of Justice! Caw-CAW!"
- Bus Full of Innocents: Done by the Wolf Boss with a box of brand-new bouncing baby bunnies.
- Call-Back: Po geeks out over being restrained by the same type of acupuncture cuffs used to imprison Tai Lung (this also serves as foreshadowing, as Viper is able to pick the cuffs just like Tai Lung did).
- Call-Forward: Baby Po wears the wok on his head as adult Po did at the end of the first film.
- Calling Your Attacks: Po does this several times, as well as some of the Furious Five like Crane. "Wings of Justice!" and "Feet of Fury!" come to mind. Though quite a few times it's relaying instructions to the rest of the Furious Five for a double team attack with him (such as a "Double Death Strike" with Tigress), so it's justified.
- The Cameo: Tai Lung, the villain of the first film, appears for a split-second during the flashback of Po's life up to the events of this film.
- Captain Obvious: Everyone knew Po was adopted; even Po himself.
- Cardboard Prison: Po and the Five have no problem busting into the jail where Masters Storming Ox and Croc are being kept. In fact, they actually have more trouble convincing Ox and Croc to escape as they've been demoralized by Lord Shen's cannon and are convinced that Resistance Is Futile. Cue a hilarious scene where the various kung fu Masters keep kicking down the barred iron door or putting it back up again while they argue. And even when the cell door is destroyed during the struggle, Ox and Croc simply walk into the opposite cell and lock themselves in there. At the climax, Ox and Croc appear at the battle to stop Shen, revealing that Shifu talked some sense into them.Storming Ox: Like I said, you are NOT getting me out of this cell! [realizes he's been thrown out of the cell in the struggle; the cell door falls to the floor and smashes to bits]
Po: YES! Whoo-hoo! Alright! Let's... [his triumph fades as Ox and Croc simply walk into the opposite cell and shut the door behind them] ...go.
Croc: I get the top bunk.
Storming Ox: It's time to surrender, panda. Kung fu is dead!
[Po and the Five gasp, shocked to the very core]
Po: Y-You... w-woo... kung fu is... de-eaah... FINE! You stay in your prison of fear, with bars made of hopelessness... and all you get are three square meals a day of... shame!
Croc: With despair for dessert.
Po: We'll take on Shen, and prove to all those who are hungry for justice and honor that kung fu still lives!
Pig: [in another cell] Yeah...
- Carnivore Confusion: One of the wolves explicitly says to a rabbit: "If you are not going to cook my rice properly, I am going to cook you!" The sequel also confirms that cannibalism still exists among mantises.
- Catch and Return: Shifu practices catching rain drops and placing them on blades of grass without breaking them. Po uses this to defeat Lord Shen's cannon ships, by redirecting their cannon fire back to the source.
- Catch-Phrase: Double duty as Pre-Asskicking One-Liner: You know when Po says "Skadoosh!" the bad guy is going down for the count...
- Cats Are Mean: Gone now for Tigress, who has become Po's best friend of the Five. Although the one scene where she's ordering Po to stay in the dungeon is pretty scary (even more so that Viper tells Po to "stay down" after he is knocked around for a bit), she isn't doing it to be mean; she clearly states at the end that she was fearing for his safety.
- Chase Fight: Po chasing Wolf Boss across Gongmen City on rickshaws! Hilarity Ensues. Po wins the running battle, only to find that Wolf Boss isn't just running from him, he's running to the palace, guarded by an entire army of wolf soldiers.
- Chekhov's Gun:
- Po's wooden action figures of the Furious Five, particularly Mantis's. This goes all the way back to the first movie, where Po comments that Mantis is about the same size as his action figure. In this movie, he swaps Mantis for his figure while they're all being locked in chains so he can help save them later.
- One that goes back to the first movie: Po's recurring use of a wok as a hat, leading to the Disc of Destruction scene.
- Chekhov's Skill: Master Shifu's water-catching technique in the beginning of the movie; during the climax, Po uses it to catch cannonballs.
- Clip Show: This is used brilliantly to show Po's Progression from a gibbering fanboy from the last movie to the kung-fu master he is now. The clip show lasts just under 10 seconds, with a very dramatic musical score to it, and total silence from the clips themselves. It also symbolizes how he has come to terms with his tragic childhood and found inner peace, along with it ending with a shot of Mr. Ping, whom he truly realizes is, after all, as real a father as anyone could have.
- Color Motif:
- As in the first film, gold is used to symbolize heroism, while red is used to symbolize power and/or violence (a rather ironic twist, as red is associated with luck and positive emotions in China while gold is traditionally more associated with power). This is especially apparent in Po's last confrontation with Shen, with Po standing in golden sunlight and Shen standing in the red glow of a cannon. A golden aura can also be seen around Po's mother when she makes her Heroic Sacrifice for him.
- Here's an example towards the end that might've gone by too fast for a few people: The cannonballs that Shen fires are red. The cannonballs that Po catches turn gold.
- Combat Pragmatist: In a world where strength is determined by kung fu prowess, Shen has no problem with using cannons and hidden weapons.
- Combination Attack: While Po is not a slouch in the kung-fu asskicking department in this movie, all his best moves are performed in tandem with the rest of the Furious Five. Most of them are some variety of tossing him in the right direction and watching the fireworks.
- Conceive and Kill: Master Mantis says he never had Daddy issues because his mother bit his father's head off. He also claims to be looking forward to the day he has a similar demise.
- Continuity Nod:
- A kid playing with a Po figurine in the opening scenes says "Enough talk. Let's fight!", which is Po's first line in his fantasy of the first film.
- There's also several in the opening fight in with the wolves. Many shots and elements of the whole scene match up with the 2D opening dream sequence of the first movie, including Po's "Feet of Fury" technique.
- The Soothsayer uses acupuncture needles to cure Po and mess with his facial expressions in the same way Mantis (unintentionally) does in the first film. It's the only way she can get him to take his medicine.
- Shen tried to change his fate by destroying the pandas, which only sealed it. It reminds one of Oogway's words in the first movie: "One often meets his destiny on the path he takes to avoid it."
- Speaking of Oogway, all of Po's Character Development was about him finding inner peace, by accepting his past and not letting it decide who he is now. This was the lesson Oogway tried to teach Po in the first film so that Po would not try to flee his destiny as the Dragon Warrior.
- Also Mantis being as big as his action figure, which becomes a Chekhov's Gun.
- Oogway's wooden staff, broken by Tai Lung in the first film, has now been repaired and is used by Master Shifu in this film. The archway above Mr. Ping's noodle shop has been similarly repaired.
- The shop itself had been renamed "Dragon Warrior Noodles and Tofu", referencing not just Po's success, but Mr. Ping's dream of making tofu.
- Po slugs Monkey, then apologizes, when the latter unexpectedly appears inside the dragon costume. In the first movie Monkey automatically slugged Po then apologized after Master Shifu freed him from the nerve-strike paralysis.
- A subtle one: Oogway, in the first movie, notes how Po eats when he's sad. Here we found out that he was hidden in a crate of radishes as a cub, right before his mother was supposedly killed. By the time the crate got to Mr. Ping, Po had eaten the entire contents of the crate. Which also explains why Po is slightly thinner and less hungry than before. Ping even worries that he's lost weight.
- "Wow! The Furious Five! You're much bigger than my action figures! Except you, Mantis... you're about the same size."
- Master Flying Rhino is mentioned, for donating his armor to the Jade Palace in the first movie, and as the father of Thundering Rhino here.
- Oogway once said "Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift. That is why it is called the Present." That's the theme of this movie. Po let go of his parents' and species' massacre when the Soothsayer told him that fate balanced the scales and eventually gave him a happy life with Mr. Ping, who cares for him and loves him as if he was his own blood himself, and his friends, who helped him achieved his most cherished dreams, especially Shifu who has all but become a second father and Tigress who may be falling in love with him. What happened in the past is history and he might not know what will happen in the future, but his life in the Valley of Peace is a literal Present.
- Cool Chair: Subverted when Lord Shen is admiring the throne, saying how his father promised it would one day be his. Gilligan Cut to his gorillas chucking the throne out the window and plonking Shen's cannon in its place.
- Cooldown Hug: Tigress gives one to Po so that he won't go against Shen again, much to the shock of the rest of the Five.
- Creative Closing Credits: That of 2D images of Po's childhood after he's sent away in the radish crate.
- Crucified Hero Shot: When Tigress (along with the rest of the Furious Five) is chained to a mast.
- Dark Is Not Evil: Thematically wise, to symbolize Yin. Po finds inner peace in a dark, watery environment.
- Darker and Edgier: Although there are still plenty of laughs and sweet moments, this film is much more violent, mostly thanks to Lord Shen and his use of cannons to get rid of every problem he has, and deals with difficult situations such as adoption. In addition, most of the movie is literally darker — it takes place in locations with dramatic or no light.
- Darkest Hour: All of the masters have been taken out by the cannon, and are floating helplessly on the sea.
- Death by Despair: The implied fate of Shen's parents, who were heartbroken at being forced to exile Shen.Shen: My parents hated me. 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.
- Death by Looking Up: Lord Shen is killed when his own cannon falls on top of him, having enough time to look up and see it. Justified, however, in that by that point, he'd accepted his fate since he makes no attempt to get out of the way, merely closes his eyes and allows it to fall on him.
- Death Glare: Tigress does this to Po in the Gongmen City prison. Everyone else in the room is temporarily cowed into submission by the sheer force of it. It's so intense, it actually seems to cause a small circle of dust to kick up for a brief second, and we never actually get to see the expression, making the intention and thought of it that much more powerful.
- Defrosting Ice Queen: Tigress started to thaw a little in the first movie, but here she can be downright affectionate to Po, even giving him a Cooldown Hug.
- Demoted to Extra: Master Shifu 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. Thankfully averted with the Furious Five, who appear much more this time around, and all of them actively help Po out throughout the film.
- Dirty Coward: Wolf Boss appears as this. He initially wants to challenge Po with his wolf soldiers. Then when Monkey and Crane pop up and defeat his wolf soldiers, he then proceeds to run away with his tail between his legs.
- Disguised in Drag: Po, during the Stealth Mode sequence, pretends to be a woman briefly. Doubles as Paper-Thin Disguise, since it consists of only a kite, two watermelons, and a fan. When a leering wolf guard moves in for a closer inspection, Po headbutts him in the face.
- Disney Villain Death: Averted. The death scenes involve getting blown to bits by a cannon, getting stabbed by knive(s), and having a BFG fall on the villain.
- Do I Really Sound Like That?: Crane denies sounding like Monkey's "caw caw" noise. He contradicts himself later with a tremendous "CAW CAW!!!"
- Doomsday Device: Lord Shen's cannons are viewed as the ultimate weapon that is going to end kung fu, and, possibly, the world as we know it.
- Doorstop Baby: Po was found by Mr. Ping in a crate of radishes.
- Double Take:
- Po's reaction to Shifu somehow teleporting directly behind him in mid-sentence.
- Also the reaction of a wolf soldier when Po says hello to him from inside a dragon disguise.
- Downer Beginning: Both the film itself (which begins with Shen's backstory of panda genocide) and Po's entire life.
- The Dragon: The Wolf Boss. He's not particularly intimidating or powerful, but both fights with him are relatively long fights, especially the second. In both occasions Po doesn't beat him once, and in both examples Po takes the last blow as The Wolf Boss leaves triumphant and victorious. He then proves Even Evil Has Standards and has a HeelFace Turn when he refuses to fire a cannon on his own men fighting the Five, and the wicked Shen graphically kills him to fire it himself.
- Dragons Up the Yin Yang: In the first film, the dragon was a more prevalent image; here, the Yin Yang is a much more prominent symbol.
- Drama-Preserving Handicap: Po's traumatic flashbacks and inner turmoil cost him several battles he might have otherwise won.
- Dream Sequence: Po's nightmare, in which he meets his true parents only to find they've replaced him with a radish that is better at kung fu.
- Drop the Hammer: The Wolf Boss, Thundering Rhino, and Po's biological father.
- Early-Bird Cameo: Master Ox, Croc, the wolf bandits, and even Shen's symbol were in Po's opening dream in the first film.
- 11th-Hour Superpower: The water droplet dance that is learned through "inner peace" becomes practically applied by Po, providing him with Catch and Return powers against the cannonballs.
- Empathic Environment: The color red accompanies Shen's presence very often. Sometimes justified, due to all the forge fires and torches; but sometimes the sky itself turns blood-red, even if it wasn't minutes ago, like when Shen marches in to challenge the Kung Fu Council. It only lightens up towards the end of the film once Shen is effectively losing.
- Empathy Doll Shot: The little panda plushie that Po finds in the remains of the Panda Village. At the end of the movie, the plushie is seen in a crate of vegetables that Po is carrying into the restaurant.
- End of an Age: Averted in that it seems like it is the end of kung fu as a relevant skill in battle with the advent of the cannon, but Po proves that wrong when he develops a kung fu Catch and Return technique that can stop cannoneers in their tracks. The portrayal of the cannon in the movie reflects actual history as it was primarily a symbolic weapon (at least at first). The fall of Constantinople in 1453 was declared the end of an era, but since the cannons were slow and difficult to aim as mentioned in Awesome, but Impractical, they weren't used that often.
- Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: Out of all Shen's hostages, the Soothsayer is treated the least cruelly (though that's still not saying much), as she raised Shen when he was shunned by his family.
- Even Evil Has Standards: The Wolf Boss, Lord Shen's second in command, has no problem with theft or genocide, but firing on his own men? That's where he draws the line. He gets killed for it. Justified in that wolves are pack animals and he is pack alpha. Additionally, the wolves are his men, but he has no requirement to care about the world around him.
- Evil Albino: Lord Shen. Remember, in Chinese culture, white is the color of death.
- Evil Brit: Lord Shen (voiced by Gary Oldman), in a parallel to Tai Lung (Ian McShane).
- Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Shen is willing to kill or hurt anyone who gets in his way, even if it's his own men. He also continuously ignores any advice that the path he's taking will only lead to his eventual defeat by Po. In fact, Po listened to the same advice Shen rejected and attained inner peace, which is what Shen lacked, despite that Shen murdered his parents and wiped out his people.
- Evil Plan: Shen's goal is to take over China and destroy Kung Fu while he's at it.
- Evil Tower of Ominousness: Shen's ancestral home and base of operations for the first part of the movie until he destroys it trying to kill Po and the Five, who are all trapped inside.
- Face Death with Dignity: After inadvertently severing the support cables on his ruined cannon in an attempt to kill Po, Lord Shen reacts to the cannon subsequently falling upon him with peaceful calm, closing his eyes right before the impact.
- Face Palm:
- Tigress facepaws in the first official real trailer, in response to Po.
- Tigress does this again upon seeing Po first using the goofy dragon costume during the Stealth Mode sequence.
- Lacking hands, Crane pulls his hat over his eyes when Po makes an idiot of himself destroying the model cannon.
- Po does a slight one himself when his hat-throwing trick turns out to be a Failed Attempt at Drama.
- Failed Attempt at Drama:
- Shen is expecting a powerful warrior to arrive in the top floor of his room, since he hears loud noises, when it is revealed one of the gorillas is carrying an exhausted Po who admits to throwing up at one point due to climbing so many stairs.
- Po has a Not Quite Dead moment on the Conveyor Belt o' Doom... and then, while screaming his Pre-Asskicking One-Liner, begins riding a giant cogwheel. However, he mistimes it and as he reaches the top a full five seconds later, admits he probably should have waited a few moments for that to have been cooler.
- The I Can't Hear You moment on the roof during Po's Big Damn Heroes speech, which Shen cannot hear a single word of since Po is over half a block away and on top of a building. It's pushed even further as he throws his hat attempting to save the Furious Five, except his hat is made of straw and flies less than a few feet before being affected by the physics of paper and wind. This one is so bad, even Po tries to cover his face out of embarrassment.
- Family-Unfriendly Death: The film is significantly darker than the first was. At first, the deaths are off-screen, but still pretty gruesome, like getting blown to bits by a giant cannon, and being ripped apart by wolves. However, the one that really takes the cake is the Wolf Boss. Shen throws a knife in his stomach. On screen. Given that up to that point all deaths happened off camera and the generally cartoonish and larger-than-life violence, it is very shocking to see such a graphic, cold-blooded killing. Immediately after being hit by the knife, however, the Wolf Boss exits the movie, so a corpse is never seen, but heavily implied. Then of course, there's the genocide of the pandas which, while relatively low-key, is still freaking genocide. The death of Po's mother stands out, as we last see her leaving baby Po in a radish crate, luring the wolves and Lord Shen away off-screen, and then nothing but Po's crying as the scene fades away.
- Fastball Special: Tigress throws Po twice in a move he calls "Double Death Strike". The second time, Mantis performs this with Tigress so that she can get up enough momentum to pull the same trick with Po in a broken rickshaw. The force is so strong it leaves a trail of flames in the road.
- Fatal Fireworks: Lord Shen uses cannons that shoot firework-like projectile. In this universe, peacocks used fireworks for centuries, but Shen was the first one to weaponize them and use them to take over China.
- A Father to His Men: The Wolf Boss counts when he stands up to Shen for ordering to fire on his own men.
- Faux Affably Evil: Even after crossing the Moral Event Horizon in the prologue, Lord Shen seems like a pleasant enough fellow.Lord Shen: Good afternoon, gentlemen. Now, we've got the pleasantries out of the way. Please leave my house.
Storming Ox: Your house?
Lord Shen: Yes, didn't you see the peacock on the front door?
- Feather Fingers: Mr. Ping and Lord Shen.
- Fire Is Red: As a consequence of the movie's strong color motifs, most fires on the film glow with an unusual crimson tone.
- Flash Step: Shifu is shown doing this several times, once even to avoid a hug from Po.
- Foe-Tossing Charge: A truly epic one happens at the climax. Too bad Shen's cannon ruins it.
- Foregone Conclusion: The movie opens with a narration about how Shen is destined to be defeated by "a warrior of black and white".
- Foreshadowing: The first film has hints of several things in this film:
- Crane's Wings of Justice move was used early on in the first film.
- Also, somewhere in the middle of the first film, Master Shifu is chanting about Inner Peace.
- Po's dream about fighting alongside mighty warriors actually occurs in the end of the film.
- Even Shen's symbol and the wolves that appeared previously in Po's dream appeared in the film. Po's memories may have been repressed but even little things like that still affected him.
- In the second film itself, a quiet moment between Po and Tigress has her noting that hard-style kung fu isn't really his thing (being fat and fluffy). At the climax, Po doesn't block the cannon shots but dodges and redirects them Tai Chi-like (i.e. soft style).
- Freeze-Frame Bonus:
- Look closely in Mantis' cage when Po is holding it. A couple of times he moves enough to cause "Mantis" inside to rock slightly but not move a muscle, making it clear that it is an inanimate object.
- When Po is running on the conveyor belt, the wok pan with Tai Lung's Face indented in it from the first movie goes over the side right before Po himself falls and catches himself with the tuning fork.
- During Po's flashback, if you look closely you can see that one of the wolves that his father strikes is scarred across his right eye by the hit. It's the Wolf Boss.
- Freudian Excuse:
- Big Bad Lord Shen's family never loved him. From his perspective, anyway.
- Reconstructed with Po, who after learning of his backstory which would make many characters go villainous, chooses inner peace over aggression and revenge.
- Furry Reminder: There are a few sprinkled throughout the movie, like when Mantis explains his dream woman, or when Tigress lets out a realistic tiger roar right before attacking. Soothsayer has a habit of eating non-food, like a real goat. Shen himself will occasionally let out a peacock screech.
- Futile Hand Reach: Tigress does a Futile Paw Reach as Po is blasted by Lord Shen's cannon. Later it happens again, but Tigress shoves Po aside in time and takes the impact herself. All the heroes are blown into the harbor, and Po swims up to Tigress, who is clinging to wreckage, to check that she's still alive. He gently pushes Tigress out of harm's way and swims off to confront Lord Shen's fleet single-handed. Tigress can be seen in the background, feebly reaching out to stop him.
- Genocide Backfire: Sort of. Lord Shen heard a prophecy that a black and white warrior would defeat him, so he destroyed the village of pandas close to his city. He later finds out that there was a survivor; Po. And a hidden village of pandas, including Po's biological father. Unlike most examples of this trope, this wasn't what directly caused the confrontation between Po and Shen, and traumatic memories of his early childhood actually weaken Po, instead of motivating him. Still, Po would never have been in a position to become the Dragon Warrior and defeat Shen if Shen hadn't destroyed his village.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar:
- When Po asks Mr. Ping on where he came from, Mr. Ping says this:Mr. Ping: Well, son. Baby geese come from little eggs. Now don't ask me where the egg comes from!
- Shen's talk about old and new has shades of Mao Zedong's own beliefs, and was especially prominent during the Cultural Revolution. Yet, it appears to have been unnoticed by the Chinese censors. One of Mao's most hated policies (and greatest failures) during the Great Leap Forward was to confiscate and melt down household metal object for use by the government; which is a crucial part of Shen's plan!
- A very subtle example occurs when Mantis laments the fact that he's not going to die by having his head torn off, like his mom did to his dad. Since female mantises usually eat their mates after mating, Mantis is complaining that he's going to die a virgin.
- Shen's attempted genocide on the entire panda village, his desire to control all of China by force and letting his soldiers terrorize and beat up civilians in the streets could possibly be similar to one of the most disturbing times in modern Chinese history.
- When Po asks Mr. Ping on where he came from, Mr. Ping says this:
- The Glomp:
- Grievous Harm with a Body: Part of Po and the Five's battling the wolf Mooks in the dragon costume involves hurling the last few victims (out the back end) into oncoming Mooks.
- Growling Gut:
- "My fist hungers for justice. *growl* That was my... fist."
- Also happens to Po when Shifu starts talking to about the previous Dragon Warrior... specifically how he went for days without food.
- The Guards Must Be Crazy: Po sneaks into Shen's factory by knocking out two wolves and holding them in front of him.Gorilla: Wipe those stupid grins off your faces.
- Ham-to-Ham Combat: Po and Shen's first scene together.
- Happily Adopted: Po and his father both admit that Po is adopted at the beginning. Po is okay with this by the end of the film.
- Hard Work Hardly Works: Played With. Po's kung fu has improved a lot since the last movie, but he's still somewhat clumsy and has a lot to learn. He is able to master Inner Peace and the redirection move rather quickly, though. Lampshaded by Shifu. Noting how Po was able to achieve inner peace at a young age, as opposed to him who had to wait a lot longer.
- "Hell, Yes!" Moment: Po returns and absolutely destroys the wolves on the boat as he goes to free the Five. Monkey, Viper, and Crane all look happy, but Tigress has a particularly awesome look on her face that's a mix of "I'm so proud of you" and "Shen, you are so fucked."
- Heroes Fight Barehanded: Po and the Furious Five are all unarmed kung fu fighters (though Monkey sometimes use a staff), while the Big Bad Lord Shen carries around a flame-like partisan and tons of daggers, and all his henchmen are heavily armed. Po and the Furious Five sometimes use the weapon of the henchmen against them, but usually throw them away after a few seconds.
- Heroic BSoD:
- A certain symbol used by Lord Shen and his forces causes Po's most traumatic subconscious memories to suddenly flare up in his mind and overwhelm him. It's even worse when he sees all the eye spots on Shen's tail feathers, since they match the symbol almost exactly.
- The Five, especially Tigress, enter this when they are captured by Shen's forces and they believe Po was killed during the Factory battle. They snap out of it when Po shows up alive.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Pulled by both of Po's parents during the panda massacre. His father stayed behind to hold off the wolves while his mother hid him in a radish basket and lured them away. The ending reveals that his father actually survived.
- He's Back: Po, when he comes back to fight Lord Shen and save the Furious Five, after he discovered his background.
- Hidden Weapons: Shen keeps a multitude of blades in his sleeves.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: Lord Shen enables the destruction of his fleet by insisting that the cannons continue firing on Po, even though Po's deflecting and returning the cannon balls.
- Hope Spot: Po frees the Five and they succeed in blocking the canal entrance. Then Shen blasts everyone with a cannon, clearing the wreckage so the rest of his fleet can sail through into the harbour.
- I Am Not Your Father: Mr. Ping makes an astounding revelation: he's not Po's biological father.
- I Can't Hear You: Po shouts a challenge from a rooftop to Shen. He should have picked a closer rooftop.
- If I Wanted You Dead...: The soothsayer says this to Po after fixing him up.
- I Have You Now, My Pretty: The wicked Shen does this briefly toward Tigress near the end of the movie while she's chained up with the rest of the Five and Po is presumed dead.Shen: [leans in close to her face] You are going to be part of something beautiful.
Tigress: [bares her teeth and growls at him]
- Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: Justified because the cannons are so heavy they can't swing fast enough to shoot Po.
- Indy Ploy: Po becomes a master of on-the-fly gambits in the sequel. Lampshaded at least once.
- After Po and the Furious Five's ill-fated first encounter with Lord Shen:Master Storming Ox: What did you do? It's chaos up there. What happened to stopping Shen?
Po: Guys, come on, give me a little credit. I meant for him to get away, 'cause... it was a trick, it was a plot; I was thinking... I'll figure out his plot more.
Mantis: That makes no sense.
Po: What do you mean? Sure it does.
- After Po returns from the valley to rescue the Five:Tigress: What's your plan?
Po: Step 1, free the Five.
Viper: What's Step 2?
Po: Honestly, I didn't think I'd make it this far.
- After Po and the Furious Five's ill-fated first encounter with Lord Shen:
- Internal Reveal: Thanks to the opening sequence, the audience knows from the beginning what happened to Po's family, but Po himself doesn't find out until just before the climax.
- I Surrender, Suckers: Po tries this to get into Shen's palace and destroy the weapon. Ultimately works; unfortunately, Shen has more than one cannon.
- Jaw Drop: Crane lets his lower beak hangs twice, when Tigress first gives a Cooldown Hug to Po and when Po hugs Tigress near the end (and doesn't get rebuffed).
- Killed Off for Real: Master Thundering Rhino dies early in the film, while Lord Shen and Shen's right hand man, the Wolf Boss, are likely dead. Po's mother is hinted at having been killed as well, but it's not entirely confirmed.
- Killer Gorilla: Shen's Elite Mooks are gorillas.
- Knife Nut: Shen. Even though he's got cannons as his main thing, his fallback weapons are loads and loads of sharp, pointy objects.
- Last of His Kind: Subverted. Both Shen and Po think that there are no more surviving giant pandas. However, the Sequel Hook at the end of the movie shows a whole panda village, including Po's biological father.
- Last-Second Chance: Rejected once again. Po tries sharing the secret to inner peace with Lord Shen, but even if Shen understands it, he attacks Po anyway. Although by that point Shen almost certainly wants to die (you can see Shen accepting his fate as the giant cannon falls on him soon after), choosing self-destruction instead of redemption still counts.
- Last Villain Stand: After Po destroys his entire armada and he's killed his own Dragon, Shen is left with nothing. Po finds him on the ruins of his flagship in the middle of a Villainous BSoD. Po offers him a Last-Second Chance, but Shen ultimately rejects it (either by not understanding or just wanting to die) and does the one thing he'd spent the entire movie running from, fighting Po one on one with everything he's got.
- Laugh of Love: Invoked and exploited by Po, when he giggles while pretending to be a female panda in order to get close enough to a nearby wolf to knock him out, which is successful.
- Laugh with Me!: Shen and Po.
- Left Hanging: While conversing on a boat, Po tells Tigress she's "so hardcore you don't feel anything". In response, Tigress gets a saddened expression and begins to say "I was...", but is interrupted by the rest of the Five showing up, and it's not revealed for the rest of the film what she was going to say.
- Left the Background Music On: A self-explanatory case in the fight at the Musicians' Village. Po invokes this.Po: Tell those musicians to start playing some action music, cuz it is on!
- Light Is Not Good: Shen, both in regards to Chinese and Western iconography, being white and red (the latter being the color of luck and joy in Chinese culture) as he is, besides being a peacock (which is basically the animal that most resembles the Chinese phoenix) and given what the possible readings of his name mean (神, "divinity", and 焴, "flame"). Although him being white-feathered goes to Obviously Evil territory if you consider that white is the color of death in most Asian cultures.
- The Load: Po 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.
- Look What I Can Do Now!: Po. In regards to the first movie.
- Lucky Translation: The Swedish dub has Tigress prompting Crane to not be such a tit, meaning wimp in Swedish as well as being a type of bird.Tigress: Var inte en sådan mes.
- Made of Iron: Subverted and played straight. Subverted in Master Rhino's death. Played straight in that everyone else also got hit with a cannon. Also played literally with Tigress, as due to her punching ironwood trees near the Jade Palace for 20 years has allowed her to take Po's hardest punch and not feel a thing, even hurting Po himself in the process.
- Meaningful Echo:
Mr. Ping: I think it's time I told you something I should have told you a long time ago...
- When Po finds the truth, the Soothsayer repeats a line said by Mr. Ping in the beginning of the film. "Your story may not have such a happy beginning..."
- Tigress tells Po that hard-style isn't really his style. After he takes care of Shen, she chuckles warmly, "That was pretty hard core."
- When Mr. Ping is about to tell Po the truth about the latter's adoption, he begins with the exact same words he used in the previous film when Po had questioned this topic. Interestingly, the way Po says "OK" here, almost sounds like he's expecting his dad to say something different, since in the previous film, Mr. Ping told him about the "secret ingredient" of his special soup instead.
- Metaphorgotten: Seems to be heading this way, but is subverted with Po and Shen during the final confrontation, after Po's destroyed Shen's armada, in a way that actually adds to the message.Shen: I took away your parents! Everything! I scarred you for life!
Po: That's the thing, Shen. Scars heal.
Shen: No, they don't. Wounds heal.
Po: Oh, yeah. What do scars do? They fade, I guess?
Shen: I don't care what scars do!!
Po: You should, Shen. You gotta let go of that stuff from the past, 'cause it just doesn't matter.
- Meteor Move: Performed by Po on the Wolf Boss at the end of the Rickshaw Chase.Po: Alaka-squasho!
- Mickey Mousing: The first fight with the wolf pack certainly has a lot of action in sync to the music. Justified as the wolves are stealing musical instruments, and they keep getting struck during the fight, so naturally they sound in time with the action, as the action is happening to them. One musician also keeps playing while the battle goes on around him. The few times where the punches and thus music are not going well with the rhythm, it is even lampshaded by the regarding characters cringing in discomfort.
- Misplaced Wildlife: Shen's gorillas, which are native to Africa. Possibly Fridge Brilliance since Shen had recently returned from exile. (There is precedent of gorillas appearing in China in the Kung Fu Panda universe: in "Secrets of the Furious Five", the enemy that Viper defeats is a massive, armor-wearing gorilla.)
- Missing Mom: Well, at least we know what happened now. Sort of.
- Mood Whiplash: At times it's hilarious. At times it's action-packed and rousing. At times it's even dark as hell and emotionally powerful. Of course, that's what makes it so good.
- Mook Chivalry: Averted. Wolves are pack animals. They always fight as a unit. Also the instances we see multiple shots fired at Po, he simply dodges most of them before catching one and throwing it back.
- Moses in the Bulrushes: Or more precisely, Baby Po in the radish produce crate.
- My God, You Are Serious: When Po realized that Tigress wasn't kidding about no snack stops on the way to stop the wolf bandits.
- My Significance Sense Is Tingling:
- Master Shifu collapses after sensing Po being shot by Lord Shen's cannon.
- At the end of the film, Po's biological father senses that he is alive and well. The latter is explained in the sequel.
- Near-Villain Victory: Lord Shen leaves the harbor of Gongmen City to conquer China with his armada armed with cannons. Everyone else has been defeated while Po is about to be shot; his only hope is a technique he has yet to master.
- Never Found the Body:
- Po's biological father.
- Shen as well, which could be a Sequel Hook.
- Never Say "Die": Averted. That and "kill" may be Shen's favorite words. Played straight in one case: he tells Po that he "took away" his parents. Justified in that Po's father at least isn't dead. Even if Shen doesn't know this, he's also flabbergasted that Po doesn't want revenge for the loss of his parents' affection, which Shen himself was embittered by, even though his own folks weren't murdered.
- Never Trust a Trailer: Much like with its predecessor, the trailers mostly showed the comedic aspects of the film. Perhaps it was DreamWorks's way of not giving away any of the surprises.
- A TV Spot has Po declare "I'm not the last panda!" while showing the panda village seen at the end of the movie, making it look like this will be a big part of the plot. It... isn't. Po doesn't say that and while the village appears, it is just a teaser at the very end of the movie.
- Similar to the above TV Spot, the DVD Release Trailer basically tells you something completely different from what actually happens in the movie. Someone must be playing a joke on the marketing department or editor.
- Nice Hat: Though not fancy or complicated in any way. Po's line preceding his gain of the hat should qualify. Also, it does look pretty cool up on that roof. It doubles as a Continuity Nod as well, since Po wore a similar hat in his kung fu dream from the first movie.Po: I am Po. And I'm gonna need a hat.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Had Po listened to Tigress and remained in the prison, the Five's idea of blowing Shen up alongside with his foundry would have worked without a hitch.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Herod!: Lord Shen strove to be very thorough trying to avert the prophecy, with the usual amount of success. Since his plan hinged on destroying every last panda in existence, not allowing so much as a single one to survive, and took extreme liberties in assuming pandas would even be the cause of his downfall, this was rather inevitable.
- Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: Lord Shen attempting genocide on the pandas not only enabled Po to complete the prophecy, but also ended up providing the Valley of Peace with a way to stop Tai Lung in the original film.
- No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Averted, thankfully. It's a good thing that Tigress is VERY disciplined, and compassionate. This is another reason why that "fight" was not in the first movie.
- No Infantile Amnesia: Po never suffered from this, but since his brain isn't that big, he doesn't need to.
- No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup: Averted. We don't see any prototypes for Shen's firework cannon, but there are a lot of backups. Played with as well, as the heroes thought there was only one cannon in existence and formed their entire plan on destroying the one. Double on Po, who thought a tiny figurine was the actual weapon. Shen then subverted both with the large cannon in his throne room (while formidable as it can hit anything in the city) was just a useful trophy to protect his foundry and he was halfway done arming his whole armada with smaller cannons.
- Oblivious Adoption: Confronted and answered. The ironic part is that Po already knew but his dad thought he didn't.
- Off Hand Back Hand: Po backpaws the last wolf guard protecting Master Ox and Master Croc. It is the only move he does the entire fight and even Tigress compliments him on it.
- Offscreen Teleportation: In an early scene in the movie, Shifu steps out from behind Po when in the previous shot he has been standing in front of Po. Po has been watching Shifu the whole time, and he is visibly freaked out. Then Shifu does it again.
- Oh, Crap!:
- When Po and the Five destroy Shen's cannon in the palace, only to find that the peacock has a whole arsenal of copies and they are about to fire a whole salvo at them. Mantis helpfully restores the comedic mood.Mantis: [upbeat] Oh no, he's got way more.
- At first Shen is clearly aware he has the upper hand... then he sees his ships being blown apart by his own cannonfire thrown back at him, and he can only watch in horror as his entire plan is blasted apart, with the biggest cannon shot from his own flagship being thrown to stop his armada dead in its tracks.
- When Po and the Five destroy Shen's cannon in the palace, only to find that the peacock has a whole arsenal of copies and they are about to fire a whole salvo at them. Mantis helpfully restores the comedic mood.
- Older Than They Look: Shen spent thirty years in exile, so he (and the Wolf Boss) must be around fifty, with Po being close to or slightly over thirty. Also, when asked, Tigress explains that she has trained for at least 20 years, landing her somewhere between 25 and 30.
- One Dialogue, Two Conversations: While ostensibly answering Po's question, Shen is actually rejecting what the Soothsayer told him about his parents.Shen: You think knowing will heal you, eh? Fill some... crater in your soul? Well, here's your answer: Your parents didn't love you. But here... let me heal you! [he jumps back to reveal a cannon aimed at Po]
- Once More, with Clarity!: During Po's convalescence under the Soothsayer's care, he properly recalls what happened to put him in the radish crate.
- Only Six Faces: This movie adds goats and sheep to the mix of rabbits, pigs, and geese to the cast of civilians from the first movie.
- Orphan's Ordeal: When Po finally remembers that he lost his parents in a genocide where he was seemingly the sole survivor, it hits him like an emotional sledgehammer.
- Papa Wolf:
- Po's biological dad, as it's shown that he directly confronted the wolves that were massacring his village with only a rake. Maybe Po's badassery is In the Blood...
- Shifu as well. His first instinct when Po gets shot is to travel to Gongmen City at breakneck speed in order to pull a Big Damn Heroes and kick the collective asses of those responsible. Granted that he's only the victim's father figure, but it's still badass.
- The Wolf Boss, possibly a literal example since he is a wolf who refuses to fire on his wolf underlings despite Shen's orders. The wolf might even be A Father to His Men in a literal sense too, given that leaders of wolf packs tend to be the daddy to the lot of them.
- Paper-Thin Disguise: For a brief moment, Po disguise himself as a woman, using a kite as a wig. Irony to the trope's name, the kite is made out of paper!
- Parental Abandonment:
- Lord Shen sees his parents banishing him as this, ignoring the fact he'd just committed genocide and thus deserved to be punished.
- Lord Shen claims this about Po's parents; however, Po eventually remembers that his mother did that as part of a Heroic Sacrifice to lure the wolves and Shen away from her son.
- Pint-Sized Powerhouse:
- Mantis, once again, such as when he throws Tigress to give her an extra boost. This movie goes out of its way to establish that Mantis is the strongest of the cast, regularly doing feats of strength that would be impressive at full size. Truth in Television, as insects really do have the most impressive liftable-weight-to-body-mass ratio.
- And Shifu, who is even tougher since he gained "Inner Peace" in the previous film.
- Play-Along Prisoner: Po's plan to get close enough to Lord Shen's cannon to destroy it.
- Post-Kiss Catatonia: Well, a Post-Hug Catatonia. At the end of the film, Po returns the hug Tigress had given him earlier, leaving her in this state. When Po continues hugging the rest of the group, she just awkwardly takes a sidestep before returning to her shocked catatonia.
- Power Copying: Po learns the moves necessary to do the Catch and Return technique to manipulate rainwater after watching his master do it once, and then circumstances teaches him how to achieve the inner peace necessary to execute the technique. At this point Shifu is a tad jealous since the aged Kung Fu master only recently mastered that himself. Taking into account the first movie (where he figured out the Wuxi finger hold all on his own), and several incidents the interquel TV show Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness, this seems to be one of Po's consistent abilities.
- Punch Catch: When Tigress catches Po venting his feelings on the ship's mast, she notes that it's not a worthy opponent and tells him to try her instead. He proceeds to nearly break his fist on her paw; twenty years of punching ironwood trees will do that.
- Punch-Clock Villain: It's lightly implied that the wolves are only still working for Shen out of fear for that he'll kill them if they don't. Considering that he offs the Wolf Boss just for not wanting to murder his own men, they're probably right.
- Reality Ensues: Three examples, one after another, all played for laughs. Po shouts a challenge at Shen, but can't actually shout that far. He then attempts to throw a straw hat to break a bunch of chains and free the Five, but then discovers that a straw hat is basically weightless, and just sort of flutters to the ground. Shen's forces are then on the receiving end of this when they attempt to hit a small moving target with their cannons for the first time. Shen may have invented gunpowder, but precision firearms are still a thing of the distant future.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Played straight by Lord Shen's red eyes and his sigil, a red eye with sun rays at each side. Justified due to his assumed albinism.
- Red Sky, Take Warning: Shen's introduction. Ironic, since red is the color of luck in China.
- Rewatch Bonus: Watch closely when Po stuffs Mantis in the case. Sharp eyes will immediately see that "Mantis" is blockier and behaving like an inanimate object.
- Ridiculously Cute Critter:
- Baby Po. So cute and fluffy.
- The bunny musician.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Lord Shen thinks Po will do this once he realizes Shen performed a genocide on the pandas and is left absolutely stunned when this trope is subverted.
- Rule of Symbolism: The Yin Yang symbol is frequently used in this film, starting with the prophecy that Shen is destined to be defeated by "a warrior of black and white". Additionally, if one looks closely at the Gongmen jail floor where Po and Tigress end up sparring at one point, it also has the Ying Yang symbol placing them on opposing sides, possibly to further their Ship Tease. When Po throws back the final canon ball, he whirls it so fast that his body and the glow of the ball form a Yin Yang symbol. Heck, the end credits show a baby Po being rolled — and he looks like a Yin Yang symbol.
- Running Gag:
- Po and his mortal enemy: stairs. Kept going in that it takes a Gorilla Mook to carry Po up the rest of the stairs part of the way.
- The Soothsayer eating Shen's robes.
- Po repeatedly leaps into battle from a fatal height — only to be caught and gently lowered by Crane at the last second.
- Master Shifu still can't meditate without someone interrupting.
- Savage Wolves: Lord Shen's minions are ruthless wolf brigands.
- Scenery Porn: And this time with the addition of cities!
- Self-Disposing Villain: Lord Shen is crushed by his own wrecked cannon because he tries killing Po and ends up cutting the ropes holding it up.
- Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: The Soothsayer says in the intro that a warrior of black and white will defeat Shen. Because of his actions, Shen ends up fulfilling the destiny. If he hadn't attempted genocide, Po never would've ended up where he could learn Kung Fu and come back to defeat him in the first place. Alternately, it's outright said in the prophecy that if he doesn't change his ways, this is what will happen. After all, if he hadn't attacked the city with his cannons, Shifu would never have gotten a letter that made him send Po.
- Sequel Escalation:
- While the first movie centered on a small mountain valley, and the villain had mostly personal motivation and acted alone, the sequel involves a big city and a villain who wants to Take Over the World and has an army of wolves, gunpowder cannons, and a freakin' river fleet at his disposal.
- A subtle one: where the first film had two Art Shifts, the sequel has three: cel animation, CGI animation, and shadow puppetry.
- Sequel Hook: When Po makes it clear that he has accepted Mr. Ping as his father as well as being the last Giant Panda, we see that Po's biological father is alive in a far away hidden village of Giant Pandas and senses that his son is alive as well.
- Shabby Heroes, Well-Dressed Villains: Po wears nothing more than a pair of sandals and shorts with obvious patches. Lord Shen wears a pure white robe made from "the finest silk in the province," as he puts it.
- Shining City: Gongmen.
- Ship Tease: Po and Tigress have a lot of... tender moments in this film. Word of Saint Paul (Guillermo del Toro) is that their relationship in the film is indeed meant to hint at romance.
- The sequence where the Furious Five hide in a dragon costume and "devour" wolf minions (It Makes Sense in Context), filmed from a top-down perspective, is an obvious Pac-Man allusion.
- In the Smoke and Fire Factory showdown, when Po suddenly appears behind Shen mounted on a huge turning cogwheel. Hi there, Terminator 2!
- One part of the scene with Po redirecting fire from all cannons at once is a visual shout-out to a scene in Shaolin Soccer, with the entire Team Evil lined up and kicking the same ball at the Shaolin goalie over and over.
- The scene where Po is riding the rickshaw to catch a wolf (also in a rickshaw) and ends up going up and falling off some scaffolding of a building is reminiscent of the chariot racing scene in The Prince of Egypt, another DreamWorks film. They even used some of the same camera angles!
- Also, other than the obvious factor of Moses in the Bulrushes, Po's mother sending Po away is very reminiscent of the scene in Prince of Egypt when Jochebed sends Moses away in the basket, right down to when they kiss their children on the forehead.
- Pretty minor, but Po getting discovered as a baby in the radish crate is pretty close to how baby Alex from Madagascar was first found after being sent adrift at sea. Russians will also remember Cheburashka, although that might have been unintentional.
- This is not the first time Jack Black has fought using Combination Attacks. Though it is decidedly less metal.
- One scene showed the Furious Five using a string of lanterns as a zipline, similar to the one at the end of Mulan.
- Shown Their Work:
- Lord Shen is a white peacock with red markings on his feathers. White is the color of death in Asian cultures, "shen" can be read as "flame" in Chinese, and in the Wu Xing red and white are the colors of fire and metal. The filmmakers clearly knew their Chinese philosophy too.
- In addition to the architecture, the movie opens with a brief history of Shen's childhood, which is presented as a stylized shadow puppet play.
- The musician troupe that Po and company try to save from bandits carries large prayer bells.
- Tigress talking about punching ironwood trees to deaden her hands is a direct reference to the same type of conditioning done by Muay Thai fighters on their hands and legs. Also used by Karate practitioners with Kyu Kushin Karate being the most famous example. Thirdly, Chinese Martial Artists.
- Sidetracked by the Analogy: Po's Rousing Speech to Ox and Croc which starts off talking about their prison made of fear but ends up (inevitably) turning into something about food. It still manages to be pretty awesome and accurate.
- Sinister Silhouettes:
- Lord Shen's armada is first shown as the silhouettes of their dragon-shaped cannon sliding across the screen of a shadow puppet play before the audience turn to the window to stare in horror.
- Played for Laughs earlier in the film when Shen is startled by the huge shadow of the Dragon Warrior coming up the stair accompanied by savage grunts, only to see one of his gorillas carrying an exhausted Po.
- Sliding Scale of Silliness vs. Seriousness: More on the serious side than the first film, but there's still plenty of silliness going on here.
- Smoke and Fire Factory: Shen's cannon foundry. Needless to say, there is no OSHA in ancient China.
- Snow Means Death: It's snowing when Po's mother gives her life for her infant son.
- So Much for Stealth: Po's attempt to sneak through the city causes Tigress to Face Palm.
- Squee!: Po's thrilled to be in the same pressure-point shackles as Tai Lung. Also when meeting Masters Croc and Ox.Po: Master Ox? Master [spots Master Croc] GASP! The ferocious Master Croc! And Master... Storming Ox! I can't believe we're rescuing actual legends of Kung Fu!
- Stealth Pun: While flinging wolf Mooks out the back end of the dragon costume, the Five somehow fling out Monkey by accident...
- Stupid Sexy Flanders: A borderline case. The Wolf Boss is a bit hung up on how soft and cuddly Po is.
- Suicide by Cop: Subverted toward the end. Lord Shen assumes Po wants this when he stands up in front of Shen's cannons, essentially a firing squad taken Up to Eleven. Po is only finding a firm place to stand so that he can deflect the cannonballs, but he might have anticipated that Shen would come to this conclusion. If he can't pull this off, he really is dead... Dark. Seeing that Shen doesn't accept Po's revelation about Inner Peace by accepting the past and instead fights the superior panda, only to get peacefully crushed by his own cannon, he himself might be a straight example.
- "Super Sentai" Stance: Parodied with the help of Po's clumsiness.
- Super Strength: Master Rhino is described as this by Tigress. She and Mantis are way up there, too.
- Take Over the World: Shen's Evil Plan (China being regarded as the entire world at the time).
- Taking the Bullet: Thankfully, a non-fatal example. In the climax of the film, Tigress pushes Po out of the way of a cannonball and takes the hit herself. She survives, but is too weak to stop Po from taking on the rest of Shen's fleet by himself.
- Tempting Fate:
- Po is good at this.Po: Next time you mess with a panda, you'd better bring a whole arrrrghhhhhh! [realizes a whole army is surrounding them]
- Lord Shen escapes to a distant tower.Mantis: At least we destroyed the weapon.
[Shen lands next to an entire battery of cannons]
Mantis: [cheerfully] Oh, no, he's got way more.
- Po is good at this.
- Toilet Humour: While Po and the Five are wearing the dragon costume disguise, it appears to "eat" a wolf (Po pulling the wolf inside through the dragon's mouth), digest him (the Furious Five beating him up), then excrete the remains (tossing him out the back), much to the disgust of a watching child.
- Took a Level in Badass: Although Po still cannot hold his own in a fight with Tigress (admittedly, very few warriors can), and his fighting style is somewhat clumsy, he kicks much more evildoer butt than in the original movie.
- Totem Pole Trench: The aforementioned dragon costume.
- Trailers Always Spoil: More like T.V. spots always spoil, but one commercial showed Po's father and the secret panda village at the end of the film.
- Tranquil Fury: Lord Shen during the final battle at the end of his Villainous Breakdown. It makes the fight much more even and if he hadn't ended up crushed by his own cannon, he might have won. Then again, Shen himself acknowledged quite early that he isn't exactly the best at fighting directly which is one reason why he has build cannons, so he might have just tried to provoke a Suicide by Cop.
- Travel Montage: Po and the Five travelling across China from the Valley of Peace to Gongmen City.
- Trojan Horse:
- Po and the Furious Five use a Dragon costume to sneak around Gongmen City.
- Also Shen's "gift" for Master Rhino and co.
- True Companions: Since the last movie, Po and the Furious Five have become much closer, with Tigress becoming his best friend out of the bunch.
- Twist Ending: Po's biological father lives in a distant panda village, and suddenly senses Po is also alive.
- Unexplained Recovery: Crane's injured wing is inexplicably healed and fully functional in the final battle.
- Unsettling Gender Reveal: The Soothsayer to Po, who claims he was "misled" by the Soothsayer's beard. Though with those horns, who can blame him?
- Villain Ball: Shen mostly averts this with the only exceptions being his genocide and his Karmic Death. He initially attempts to make Masters Croc, Ox, and Rhino leave peacefully (though he was clearly prepared for resistance), he avoids a confrontation with Po at all costs (as he is the one destined to defeat him), he makes back-ups of his super weapon, he's more than willing to send his mooks to do much of the work rather than putting himself at risk, and (usually) being more than willing to Just Shoot Him. His fighting style is also based on pragmatism with hidden weapons, misdirection, and no qualms about running if it becomes necessary. He only really starts to pick up the ball in the climax when Po has rescued the Five and they, along with Masters Shifu, Croc, and Ox, are boarding his ships.
- Villain Has a Point: A brief one towards the end.Shen: Not that. How did you find peace? I took away your parents. Everything! I I— I scarred you for life!
Po: See that's the thing, Shen. Scars heal.
Shen: No, they don't. Wounds heal.
- Villain Opening Scene: The movie begins with a prologue describing Shen's Start of Darkness before cutting to the Valley of Peace and showing the title.
- Villainous Breakdown: Po appearing as Shen is about to sail to triumph seems to result in the peacock finally losing it; while he remains sane, he kicks the Attack! Attack! Attack! strategy he'd employed with his cannons up to 11, even willing to fire on his own fleet to clear out all obstacles and casually knifing The Dragon when he refuses. This results in Shen refusing to cease using his cannons even when Po has perfected the catch and return technique, resulting in an epic Oh, Crap! when Po's final returned shot makes a yin-yang symbol before striking his flagship. When Po confronts him on his ship after crippling it, he finds Shen completely stunned by both the fact everything he created has been destroyed and the fact that Po managed to overcome his traumatic past and find inner peace. When Po explains it to him, he snaps and tries to kill Po. Unlike Tai Lung, however, Shen doesn't lose his head, managing Tranquil Fury despite his breakdown, resulting in a much more even fight. This is most likely due to the Soothsayer's prediction starting to come to pass, and by this point Shen is getting desperate to change it. His Mind Screw didn't work and force is his only option. You can pretty much sense it in Shen's voice when he asks how Po overcame his trauma. Even if it's calm, his ambition has been left in ruins and he's got nothing to lose, leading to the final assault and ultimately death at his own hands.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Po and Tigress are a mild case of Type 1.
- Was It Really Worth It?: The Soothsayer asks Shen if everything he's done so far, and everything he's planning to do, will be worth it in the end after he destroys his ancestral home in a failed attempt to kill the Five. Shen's response implies he's not certain if it will be or not.
- Weak, but Skilled: Shen doesn't have brute strength or the sort of Super Toughness that kung-fu masters of the setting have. But he's far from harmless in a fight: he's extremely fast and a Knife Nut.
- Weaponized Headgear: Played for Laughs and subverted when Po proclaims that his straw hat is actually the "Disc of Destruction" and throws it at Shen's ship. It works as well as you'd expect.
- We Have Reserves: Lord Shen is not averse to firing at his own ships and killing his own minions if it helps to destroy Po. The Wolf Boss objects, and Shen offhandedly murders him.
- Wham Line: The very last line: "My son is alive."
- What Do You Mean, It's Not Symbolic?:
- Like in the first movie, this trope is invoked during the final battle. Shen professes his hatred of kung fu and desire to eradicate it more than once, but in the end, when told by Po that he should do what he really desires to do with his life, instead of being controlled by his past, Shen chooses to have one last kung fu battle with Po, and actually manages to fight Po on even terms, proving that he isn't just attacking in a blind rage (look how well that ended for the far more powerful Tai Lung). Then the wreck of his cannon interrupts the fight and crushes the wicked peacock, in the far less subtle application of the same trope.
- The floor of Gongmen Jail has a curved line running through its circular center. When Tigress confronts Po there, she is standing at one point and repeatedly tossing him to another, causing them to form a yin-yang symbol when viewed from above.
- What the Hell, Hero?: Not only does Po keep freezing up during crucial moments whenever he sees Lord Shen's symbol, but he refuses to explain why. This doesn't rub well with the other Five (Tigress especially) when this problem makes him miss the perfect opportunity to catch Shen. It passes when they find out why he was distracted, though.
- Why Won't You Die?: "How many times do I have to kill the same stinking panda??!"
- Wide Eyes and Shrunken Irises: Used several times, usually displaying dismay or sudden surprise.
- With My Hands Tied: Done as a Funny Background Event when Tigress kicks the spear from the paws of a wolf guard who keeps jabbing her with it.
- World of Funny Animals
- Worst. Whatever. Ever!: Apparently to Shifu, not even Tai Lung's fall from grace compared to the day Po was chosen as Dragon Warrior. It did, however, help him achieve inner peace.Master Shifu: The day you were chosen as Dragon Warrior, was the worst day of my life. By far. Nothing else came so close. It was the worst, most painful, mind-destroying, horrible moment I have ever experienced.
- You Are Too Late: Po and the Five come to destroy Lord Shen's cannon thinking he only built one, only to realize that they are far, far too late considering he's already built a whole arsenal of them.
- You Can't Fight Fate: Lord Shen appears to be well aware of this trope even though he strives to avert it. He finally accepts this in the end.
- You Can't Thwart Stage One: Po and the Furious Five are unable to destroy the cannons at the foundry or stop Lord Shen from bringing the cannon ships out of Gongmen City. Still, they succeed in thwarting Lord Shen's plans and defeat him.
Secrets of the Masters provides examples Of:
- Art Shift: Like in Secrets of the Furious Five, the present-day sequences are 3D, while Po's story is in 2D.
- Cats Are Mean: The Wu Sisters are a trio of cats who play this trope very straight. As in, "Live in a volcano fortress, openly proclaim their evilness, and try to take over all of China's crime gangs."
- Disney Death: Oogway suffers one. Not that it fooled anyone but the characters, since we saw his actual death in the first film.
- Doomed by Canon: Master Thundering Rhino. If you didn't feel bad for him already...
- Metaphorically True: Oogway is able to get the Masters to cooperate only after telling them that they will receive "a wealth of riches" for completing the mission. He's talking about emotional riches and the Masters are not happy when they find this out.
- Mentor Archetype: Oogway, as usual.
- Retcon: Does this to the backstories of Masters Ox, Croc, and Thundering Rhino. Justified in that their original backstories only existed online so many people probably didn't know about them.
- "Well Done, Son!" Guy: When Rhino, Croc, and Ox are thinking of what they'll do with their riches, Rhino's vision is of him getting his father's approval.
Secrets of the Scroll Provides Examples Of:
- Action Dress Rip: Tigress when she finally decides to use her own "tiger style" to defeat the Boar.
- Art Shift: Switches between 2D and 3D animation like the other shorts.
- Big "NO!": Po has one when he finds out his dad accidentally gave his Furios Five action figures away.
- Be Yourself: Tigress struggles with keeping her natural tiger instincts at bay in combat while Shifu orders her to use his own technique. She's supported by Oogway however, and eventually realizes she indeed fights the best when she lets her tiger instincts guide her.
- Comically Missing the Point: When the villagers are evacuating the Valley of peace, Po and Mr. Ping have this conversation:Young Po: This is terrible.
Mr. Ping: Yes, they're leaving before breakfast.
Young Po: No, Dad, if I hadn't poisoned Shifu with my food, then none of this would have ha...ppened.
Mr. Ping: Po? You cooked that meal for Shifu? So Shifu ate noodles from Ping's Noodle Hut?
Young Po: Dad, I'm sorry, I was gonna tell you, but—
Mr. Ping: No, this is fantastic!
Young Po: But—
Mr. Ping: Now serving the Jade Palace: Ping and Son. You can't buy this kind of publicity.
Young Po: But, Dad—
Mr. Ping: If we hurry, we'll be the only ones selling food to all those starving folk.
- Dumb Muscle: Despite being very strong, Boar can't pronounce the word "invincible".Master Mongrel: He's coming! A giant of a warrior.
Boar: I am Boar!
Master Mongrel: He's unstoppable!
Boar: I am unstoppable!
Master Mongrel: He's invincible!
Boar: I am invinc... insiv... I am Boar!
- Earn Your Happy Ending:
- Tigress and the rest of the Five get a chance to confront Boar on the battlefield, and with some teamwork, they get a chance to demonstrate they have what it takes to become kung fu warriors, and win their first battle.
- After they return to the Jade Palace:Shifu: Sloppy, very sloppy. Your technique is unorthodox and undisciplined. Training begins right away.
[Tigress starts to exercise in the courtyard]
Shifu: Tigress! What are you doing?
[Shifu opens the gym's doors]
Shifu: It's time to develop this tiger style of yours. I am very proud of you.
Shifu: [to the rest of the Five] Wait! You're welcome to stay. You fought well, with courage and honor; we must explore those... skills of yours.
- Evil Is Hammy: "I am Boar!!!"
- Full-Boar Action: The villain of this short is a destructive giant of a warrior named Boar.
- For Want of a Nail: Basically the plot of the short is how Po is actually the reason the Furious Five met each other. Teenage Tigress was running an errand for Shifu to find four masters to fight an approaching threat, when she lost the scroll with their names and accidentally picked up another scroll by Mr. Ping's noodle shop. The scroll she got was a scroll Po had written down various professions he would attempt to pursue instead of being a chef, those being "a dancer, a comedian, a cleaner and a doctor". Tigress subsequently picked up the four most fitting of the descriptions: Viper: the Dancer, Monkey: the Comedian, Crane: the Cleaner, and Mantis: the Doctor.
- Gag Echo: When Master Mongrel reports Boar's approach:Mongrel: Master Oogway! Master Shifu!
Shifu: Master Mongrel, what is it?
Mongrel: He's coming! A giant of a warrior, he calls himself Boar.
Boar: I am Boar!
Mongrel: He's unstoppable.
Boar: I am unstoppable!
Mongrel He's invincible!
Boar: I am invis... insiv... I am Boar!
- Green Around the Gills: Shifu gets sick from the ill-prepared batch of noodles that Po makes when Shifu and Oogway decide to order takeout.Young Po: [while cooking a batch of noodles] So, uh, what do you guys do all day up there at the uh— [Po sneezes into the batch of noodles] Jade Palace?
Jade Palace Goose: Kung fu.
Young Po: Thank you, bless you too.
Jade Palace Goose: No, no: kung fu.
Young Po: [sniffling] Oh yeah, kung fu. That's really... neat how you do the... fu thing... with the... kung...
Jade Palace Goose: You have no idea what that is, do you?
Young Po: No, no I don't.
[moments later, at the Jade Palace]
Shifu: [with a nauseated face] What was... in that food?
Oogway: Please, fetch a doctor.
- I Am What I Am: Coupled with Meaningful Echo: "I'm not Shifu... I am Tigress!"
- Last-Second Word Swap: By Po when contemplating a list of dream jobs after Mr. Ping reports that "some idiot cook" poisoned Shifu:Mr. Ping: Po, your destiny is to become a chef like me.
Young Po: I can't be a chef, I'm the one who poi... nted out... that I can't be a chef.
- Lethal Chef: Po accidentally sneezes into a soup that was being sent to the Jade Palace. It promptly leaves Shifu sick for the remainder of the short.
- Non-Mammalian Hair: Both teenage Po and teenage Crane have hair in the short (or at least, hair on the top of the head that is distinct from the rest of the hair all over Po's body).
- Not What It Looks Like: When Tigress is searching for Monkey, the latter is acting as a comedian whose jokes are so terrible his audience throws tomatoes at him and flees the restaurant. Tigress arrives and is excited to hear how people are referring to him as "bad", as well as Monkey himself being covered in what looks like blood and proudly announcing he "killed in there".
- Recycled Soundtrack: The short uses music from Kung Fu Panda 2, notably, Tigress running and having fun with her new friends is accompanied by "Save Kung Fu", and the score playing as they fight the Boar is "Musicians Village".
- Retcon: The events shown contradict things that were shown in "Secrets of the Furious Five," such as Monkey being recruited by Shifu, or Mantis already being a master. Crane is shown to still be working as a janitor, even though in his story we learned that he could actually fight despite not being muscular and physically strong, and it was implied he got into the academy.
- Running Gag: Monkey telling a joke that ends with "... that's not a banana, that's my wife!" Apart from in his imagination, no one laughs at it.
- Running on All Fours: Shifu has Tigress restrain her tiger instincts which includes making her run using an awkward two-legged jog. When Tigress sees how easily her new friends are outrunning her, however, she decides to get down on all four and has the time of her life as a result.
- Rule of Cool: In the short, Tigress's pupils turns slitted whenever she gives in to her tiger instincts. In real life, tigers don't have slitted pupils, and Tigress never has them in the films either.
- Ship Tease: When Po comes across the Five fighting the Boar, he literally has "heart eyes" at watching Tigress fight. Granted, it was meant to show him falling in love with kung fu, but the timing of his expression is quite convenient. And apparently, Tigress is the reason he got into kung fu.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: Shifu acts a lot meaner to Tigress in this short than he did in Secrets of the Masters.
- Trickster Mentor: Oogway, as usual. It's implied throughout the short that he was well aware ordering food would lead to Shifu getting sick, which would then lead to Tigress learning to fight on her own and gain companions on the way. Once Tigress has proven herself, Oogway casually hits a few nerve points on Shifu to make the latter fully recover, meaning Oogway could have done so all along.
- Unlikely Heroes: When Tigress picks up Po's scroll after mistaking it for Shifu's, it lists a cleaner, a comedian, a dancer, and a doctor, which was originally Po's list of possible careers, and Tigress encounters the other members of the Furious Five along the way for the first time. She finds Crane doing janitorial work at the Wang Fu village training hall, Monkey doing a comedy club routine to the audience's disappointment, Viper who can do a good ribbon dance, and Mantis, a would-be acupuncturist whose first patient is Shifu.
- Unskilled, but Strong: Boar doesn't appear to be especially skilled at kung fu, but his sheer strength allows him to tear through the other masters like tissue paper.
- Wingding Eyes: Po gets hearts in his pupils when he sees Tigress performing kung fu for the first time.
- "Well Done, Daughter!" Gal: Shifu at the end admits to Tigress that he approves of her fighting style and the four fighters she found, and that he is proud of her.