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|“||Behold... The REAL Dragon Warrior!||„|
|~ Ke-Pa after assuming his true form.|
Ke-Pa is the overarching antagonist of the Kung Fu Panda franchise, serving as the unseen overarching antagonist of DreamWorks' 16th animated feature length film, Kung Fu Panda, the overarching antagonist of the TV series Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness (being the main antagonist of the two-parter Enter The Dragon) and a posthumous antagonist of Kung Fu Panda: Paws of Destiny.
He is a dragon-like demon who ravaged the Valley of Peace with his fellow demons long ago, was sealed in a weaker mortal form and fled but later came back for revenge once his powers began to return to him.
He was voiced by Alfred Molina, who also played Mr. Freeze in Harley Quinn, Doctor Octopus in Spider-Man 2, Lasombra in Hey Arnold! The Jungle Movie, Johann Tetzel in Luther, Rippen in Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero, Satipo in Raiders of the Lost Ark, Professor Jeffries in Chill Out, Scooby-Doo!, Maxim Horvath in The Sorcerer's Apprentice and Reverend Leland Drury in White Fang 2: Myth of the White Wolf.
|“||Stripped of his might, Ke-Pa swore revenge and fled, the power of the peach tree keeping him trapped in a mortal body, the body... of a pig.||„|
|~ Ke-Pa's opening narration in Enter the Dragon.|
In his mortal form, Ke-Pa is a gray pig with large ears, white bushy eyebrows, and jagged teeth. He sports an orange robe with yellow stripes and a small orange and yellow hat.
|“||All now bow down to me, your new Dragon Warrior. [Ke-Pa begins laughing and simultaneously breathing fire into the sky.]||„|
|~ Ke-Pa to the villagers as Po is banished from the Valley of Peace.|
In his true form, Ke-Pa reveals that he is actually draconic in appearance, with a design heavily based on chinese dragons (being the first character to bear such a design). He has red scaly skin, several dull golden yellow horns, sharp teeth, red eyes, goatee, and an elongated body.
|“||This is just the beginning. Soon we'll have all of China, and then; the world. We'll wipe all mortals right off this planet!||„|
|~ Ke-Pa and his brethren begin the destruction of all life on Earth.|
Ke-Pa was shown to be blasphemous, arrogant and bitter of his defeat against Oogway in both forms; however, he additionally became destructive and tyrannical when he regained his demonic powers, though presumably he was already quite destructive in the past, based on the flashbacks showing his demon breathren laying waste to the Valley of Peace.
His plans to wreak havoc and destroy the world shows that he is a vengeful, oppressive, manipulative and power-hungry being. He is also shown to be very disrespectful and vituperative for mortals and will mock and toy with them, believing them to be powerless against his supernatural powers.
In spite of his evil and destructive nature, Ke-Pa can be very patient (as evidence by him slowly walking to the Valley of Peace once his power began to return to him [though this could be chalked up to him being overly confident and believing no one could stop him] as well as him waiting for the construction of Zhuangzi's Funnel in order to release his fellow demons) and wise, thanks to his long age and centuries-long imprisonment, providing a level of cunning that goes well with his sadistic humor and wit, making him a fearsome opponent both physically and psychologically.
|“||The Sacred Peach Tree of Heavenly Wisdom has overlooked the Valley of Peace for centuries, but for much of that time, the valley was anything but peaceful. Demons of the underworld ruled. And anyone who dared enter their valley was driven off, or worse...||„|
|~ Ke-Pa's opening narration in Enter the Dragon.|
Many centuries ago, back when even the ~1000 year old Oogway was still young, Ke-Pa was one of the many demons that escaped from the underworld to plague the nearest region to the hole from which they had emerged, the Valley of Peace. He was the mightiest among his kind and ruled by their side, likely serving as their leader. Due to his dragon-like appearance, it is possible that the legends of destructive dragons started thanks to him.
At some point, while Ke-Pa was away, a martial artist came to the Valley of Peace, a young tortoise named Oogway. Before some of the demons could kill a few cornered villagers, Oogway stood between the two groups, confronting the demons. The demons soared towards Oogway, and the tortoise began to summon a powerful life force within him in the shape of the Yin Yang symbol, known as the Hero's Chi. Before the demons could reach him, Oogway launched rays of energy at them, driving them all back to the hole leading to the underworld from which they had emerged, and capped it with an enormous metal seal.
Enraged upon his return to the Valley of Peace, Ke-Pa snuck up on an exhausted Oogway and relentlessly attacked the tortoise, sending him flying hundreds of meters away at the base of the Sacred Peach Tree. As Ke-Pa prepared himself to strike the final, killing blow, something magical happened. As Oogway had protected the Valley of Peace, the Peach Tree now protected Oogway. Golden rays shot out of the tree out toward the sky and into the ground, or as described by Ke-Pa "the powers of Heaven and Earth", surrounding Ke-Pa and overcoming the demon's power, imprisoning him inside the mortal body a powerless pig. Swearing vengeance, he fled, but not before becoming aware that Oogway built the Jade Palace on top of the sealed pathway to the underworld in order to keep it safe and protected.
Ke-Pa then waited for the tree to die so that he can regain his powers, destroy the one who possesed the "Hero's Chi" and free his demons. When the day came that the tree started to die, Ke-Pa started to gain some of his powers back and headed for the Valley of Peace. There, he encountered Po, who he fought and easily defeated. After that, he arrived at Peach Tree Hill, where he fought Shifu and defeated him as well, just as easily. After that, the tree died and Ke-Pa gained his full power and true form back.
When Shifu lies saying that he has the "Hero's Chi", Ke-Pa attempted to free his demons by crushing Shifu thus destroying the Chi, but Shifu revealed that this would only make it impossible for Ke-Pa to free the other demons. Instead, Shifu proposed to use an ancient artifact known as Zhuangzi's Funnel, which would force Ke-Pa to enter a trance and leave him vulnerable for the Furious Five to trap and attack him, which was Shifu's plan that unfortunately did not work. Upon Po's return, Ke-Pa discovered that the panda was the real host of the Hero's Chi and almost crushes him to death, extracting the Chi, killing him, and freeing his demons in the process.
|“||It's over. Po is gone, and Ke-Pa has won.||„|
|~ Shifu loses all hope.|
Miraculously, Po is brought back to life by the peach tree sapling planted by Shifu and his Hero's Chi is not only given back to him but also enhances his already great power, to Ke-Pa's surprise as Po reappears while the demon is laying waste to the village alongside his brethren. Ke-Pa, witnessing the Hero's Chi killing two of his minions, orders the rest to devour and destroy Po. Using the Hero's Chi, Po destroys some of the demons but is unable to take them all on, so he lures them back to the underworld and seals them once again.
Enraged, Ke-Pa swears this day will see the end of the dragon warrior. Weakened, Po is unable to attack Ke-Pa with the Hero's Chi but it slowly starts to return to him, until he shoots one last massive beam of energy directly into Ke-Pa's mouth as he tries to eat him, ending his reign of terror for good.
|“||No, this can't happen, you're a worm, an ant, A MORTAL!||„|
|~ Ke-Pa's last words as he tries to devour Po.|
Powers and Abilties
|“||But one demon remained, stronger, smarter, and faster than the others. His name... Ke-Pa.||„|
|~ Ke-Pa's opening narration in Enter the Dragon.|
Ke-Pa is a fearsome beast that is unquestionably one of the most powerful characters in the Kung Fu Panda franchise and easily the mightiest fighter in the show, with the possible exception of Po when powered by the Hero's Chi who managed to defeat Ke-Pa, albeit with great difficulty. Ke-Pa is arguably the only villain who is capable of defeating Oogway, as he almost killed him if the Peach Tree hadn't intervened.
|“||We've never encountered a foe as powerful as Ke-Pa.||„|
|~ Shifu to Po|
|“||Our only hope is that one of you intercepts Ke-Pa before the peach tree dies and he reaches his full strength. But under no circumstances are you to fight him alone, only as a group will we have a chance.||„|
|~ Shifu to Po and the Furious Five|
While imprisoned in his mortal body, he has the strength of a pig and is nothing special to larger animals like crocodiles and buffalos, but once he starts to regain his strength, he becomes considerably more powerful, superior even to the likes of the prodigious Tai Lung, casually lifting and throwing Po with a single arm, overpowering Shifu with little effort and taking multiple strikes from an angry Po with no effect, even when the demon purposefully let his guard down. Shifu stated that they had never faced such a powerful enemy and that he, Po and the Furious Five would only stand a chance against his mortal form if they all worked together.
He possessed telekinesis which enabled him to fly and crush objects from a distance.
|“||I need you to go tell the villagers to pack up and run for their lives, make them understand even the Dragon Warrior is no match for Ke-Pa.||„|
|~ Shifu to Po|
In his original dragon-like demon form, Ke-Pa grows even stronger (possibly on par if not superior to Kai) as he was able to easily defeat a much younger, albeit tired, Oogway, something very few characters in the series would be capable of doing.
His physical strength is immense, able to smash Shifu through buildings and send the several hundred to thousand-ton cap off the seal flying. His fire breath is even more impressive, able to reduce trees to dust and, through fireballs, capable of reducing the top of Jade Mountain into a crater far bigger than even him.
Though wingless, much like the chinese dragons of old legends, he can soar through the skies at great speeds, and seemingly control the weather, or at least lightning which he can shoot from his eyes and manipulate it from the clouds. The telekinesis shown in his mortal form becomes enhanced as well, and he can lift massive chunks of the Jade Palace with it.
His most noteworthy and obvious trait in his true form is his incredible size, being the largest villain in the series.
- The name Ke-Pa (pronounced "kee-PAH") means dreadful, formidable, scary, etc in chinese.
- Ke-Pa is the only character showing resemblances or connections with the dragons in the world of Kung Fu Panda thus far. Another example of a mythical creature is Qilin, and various demons seen in the franchise.
- Ke-Pa is considered the most powerful and most evil villain in the Kung Fu Panda series (until he shares that role with White Bone Demon in the series that followed) due to him wanting to wipe out all mortals off the face of the planet and take over the world with his demon horde.
- Ke-Pa can be considered the overarching antagonist of the entire Kung Fu Panda franchise since he is the leader of the very first evils in the world, plus to ensure his defeat, Oogway built the Jade Palace, where the main protagonist of the franchise, Po, would train to be a better Kung Fu fighter and hero to be the protector of the Valley of Peace (and train the protectors of the New Panda village following the aftermath of their genocide by Lord Shen) and defeat villains like Tai Lung (who was also raised by Master Shifu in the Jade Palace to be the dragon warrior, turning him evil when he realized he actually wasn't and all his hard training was for nothing), the aforementioned Shen (who is the franchise's big bad) and Kai the Collector, as well as assist on the defeats of Jindiao and the White Bone Demon. This also makes him a necessary evil.