|“||I've been waiting a long time for this moment. Soon, Donkey Kong and his pretty little island...will be no more.||„|
| ~ King K. Rool|
King K. Rool (who has gone by many aliases) is the malevolent king of the Kremlings, the Master of the Kremling Krew, and the main antagonist of the Donkey Kong series, as well as the archenemy to Donkey Kong, Diddy Kong, and the entire Kong Family.
King K. Rool has repeatedly tried to steal the Kongs' Banana Hoard for reasons unbeknownst to anyone and has even kidnapped members of the Kong Family on various occasions. His name is a pun on the word "cruel", which describes his actions and his personality, his name is also corruption in the world "rule". After Bowser, King K. Rool is the second most recurring villain in the greater Super Mario Bros. continuity.
In the Donkey Kong Country animated series, he was voiced by Ben Campbell, while in the Japanese dubbed version of the television series, he was voiced by Jūrōta Kosugi. In Donkey Kong 64, K. Rool possessed an ominous and low voice provided by Chris Sutherland. In later games since then, K. Rool is voiced by Toshihide Tsuchiya, who also voices Funky Kong in the series.
Television and Comics
Donkey Kong Country
K. Rool appears in the German Club Nintendo's comic adaptation of Donkey Kong Country, first appearing to attack Diddy Kong and seal him within a DK Barrel, before stealing Donkey Kong's Banana Hoard. King K. Rool later appears on his ship, the Gangplank Galleon, and battles both Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong, only to be defeated by them. King K. Rool, under the guise of Kaptain K. Rool, was also featured in the magazine's Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest comic special, appearing at the beginning of it to taunt a captured Donkey Kong.
Donkey Kong Country television series
K. Rool is one of the main characters and the main antagonist in the Donkey Kong Country animated series, where his name is pronounced "Kuh-Rool", rather than "Kay-Rool". In the show, his personality is relatively the same as in the games: bossy, megalomaniacal and slightly clumsy.
There are some changes made to his character, however, while the games have him act as a comical, but still ruthless tyrant who intimidated his underlings, the TV series has him be portrayed as a childish, ineffectual and foppish villain who actually had poor control over the other Kremlings, even being betrayed by Krusha in one situation.
He was also prone to bouts of sympathy, out of sync with his villainy, such as being softened by Donkey Kong's and Candy Kong's love, and respecting World Peace Day. His voice is radically different from the games, as in the animated series he had a fairly high voice with a Southern English accent, while in various games, he had a gurgling and growling voice, or sometimes a thunderous and intimidating baritone as in Donkey Kong 64.
He is constantly bragging about his brain and emphasizes this by using long and sophisticated words. K. Rool often, with the aid of his henchmen Klump and Krusha, attempts to steal the mystical Crystal Coconut and use its power to rule Kongo Bongo Island (which is what Donkey Kong Island is called in the show) and possibly the world.
He seems to be always hatching diabolical plans to steal the mystical coconut, and although his plans are works of evil genius, a combination of the stupidity of his troops and the resourcefulness of the apes always leads to failure.
K. Rool would also enact other schemes such as trying to steal the legendary Golden Banana of Inka Dinka Doo and framing Donkey Kong for several crimes he himself had committed. In the animated series, K. Rool's physical appearance is slightly altered from his video game counterpart. His tail is gone, and his eye was not bloodshot, unlike in the games, though it does bulge to large proportions when he is excited or irritated (which is often). His eyes also are not connected as they are in the games, and instead, are separated. K. Rool's wristbands are more detailed, instead of being plain gold, as is his crown. King K. Rool's cape is also much shorter in length in the Donkey Kong Country cartoon.
The series also expands K. Rool's backstory slightly, with the episode "Best of Enemies" revealing that he was once friends with Cranky Kong and that the two were nefarious pranksters; another episode entitled "The Kongo Bongo Festival of Lights" also has King K. Rool mentioning both his mother and various, unnamed siblings. The Donkey Kong Country cartoon also introduces a Kremling rival of sorts to K. Rool, a pirate named Kaptain Skurvy, who also wishes to obtain the Crystal Coconut.
In a possible alternate timeline seen in the episode "It's a Wonderful Life", in which Donkey Kong sees what Kongo Bongo Island would be like if he did not exist, King K. Rool is portrayed as a somewhat timid freedom fighter in a feud with Diddy Kong, who is portrayed as a power-hungry tyrant. He is called by General Klump as "King K. Rool, Sir".
He was voiced by Ben Campbell.
Bumm-Badabumm im Urwald
Kaptain K. Rool is also featured as the main villain in an obscure German Donkey Kong comic, Bumm-Badabumm im Urwald; however, he is always referred to as King K. Rool. In this story, K. Rool sends several members of the Kremling Krew to steal all the bananas on Donkey Kong Island, apparently hoping to starve the Kongs to make them weaker. K. Rool himself only appears near the end of the comic in the "Lost Land". When K. Rool notices that the Kongs are in the Lost Land, he, at first, sends several dozen Kremlings at Donkey, Diddy and Dixie Kong, thinking the sheer number of Kremlings would defeat the Kongs. Unfortunately for K. Rool, the Kongs managed to pulverize his Kremling warriors. Taking matters into his own hands, K. Rool tries to blast the Kongs with a pineapple-launching blunderbuss. At first, it seems the Kongs are overpowered until Donkey Kong finds and throws a nearby TNT Barrel into the pile of bananas K. Rool is standing on. The resulting explosion buries K. Rool under the huge pile of bananas. King K. Rool is last seen having made a deal with Donkey Kong, in exchange for digging K. Rool out of the giant pile of fruit, K. Rool would have all the bananas returned to the Kongs.
Donkey Kong in When the Banana Splits
K. Rool is also featured as the villain of another Donkey Kong comic called "Donkey Kong in When the Banana Splits". Here K. Rool, along with several Kritters, manage to steal all of the Kongs' Golden Bananas. Unfortunately for K. Rool, his heist is a failure, as he steals the bananas when the Kongs are home, so the Kongs easily track down K. Rool and his Kritter minions. In the end, K. Rool is defeated by Donkey Kong's Super Duper Simian Slam and the Kongs reclaim their stolen bananas.
In K. Rool's most common appearance, he wears a red cape and a gold crown, but he is fond of adopting many other looks and costumes as well. When he took on the alias of Kaptain K. Rool, he traded in the cape for a brown trench coat and the crown for a pirate hat. When he becomes Baron K. Roolenstein, he wears a white lab coat, a small black wig, and has a propeller on his back. As King Krusha K. Rool, K. Rool wore a pair of large overalls and boxing gloves. He also had a pair of pink shoes with a hole in one of them. Strangely enough, he has shown to have a long tail even though he doesn't in some of his other appearances and sometimes has four toes instead of three as shown in artworks. K. Rool's skin is light green (though some appearances show it as dark green).
He has a large bloodshot eye, muscular arms, and is usually shown with jagged teeth. Originally King K. Rool's underbelly seemed to be covered in a chest plate that was golden in both texture and color, but in some appearances since DK: King of Swing his underbelly was changed to no longer look armored and its color went from golden to beige. In Mario Super Sluggers, K. Rool keeps his crown but losses his cape to a slight ancient Egyptian pharaoh design of a collar and loincloth.
King K. Rool has a somewhat humanoid anatomy and a rather short tail. He's rather obese, has an 'outie' belly button, and gynaecomastia, although he has broad shoulders and his arms and legs are clearly bulging with well-toned muscles.
Taking into consideration his physique, as his body may be composed of more muscle than fat, his attacks and athletic abilities from the first Donkey Kong Country and Donkey Kong 64, he is capable of inflicting considerable damage with physical strength alone. In DK: King of Swing, King K. Rool had the highest attack out of all the characters. The brute strength that he possesses may rival or perhaps even surpass that of Donkey Kong and Chunky Kong. In fact, he's tied with Bowser and Petey Piranha for the best batting abilities in Mario Super Sluggers. K. Rool is extremely agile, charging at enemies, jumping as if he can ignore gravity, and in Donkey Kong Land, he even tried belly flopping onto the Kongs.
As his name (a pun on "cruel") may imply, K. Rool is often extremely manipulative, tyrannical, arrogant and brutal, ruling his minions through threats and intimidation, often punishing them severely when they fail. Even his most powerful followers seem to fear his wrath, as displayed in Donkey Kong 64 when his subtle display of anger results in Army Dillo fainting on the spot. He doesn't seem to respect his henchmen, the Kritters, much better either. In Mario Super Sluggers, he calls brown Kritter "the dirty under-belly of the Kremling Krew". Despite all of this, however, he and the Kritters have good chemistry with each other in Mario Super Sluggers.
K. Rool is also a somewhat dirty and dangerous fighter. He fakes defeat, often collapsing in the middle of combat and making it seem like he has been defeated, only to rise seconds later and begin fighting again.
He seems to hate the Kongs, calling them "filthy apes" and "monkey brains", though he doesn't treat his own soldiers much better either, whom sometimes appear to be loyal to him regardless.
Both Donkey Kong 64 and Super Smash Bros. Melee imply that K. Rool is somewhat insane and demented. This instability might have been shown in Donkey Kong 64 when the Kongs made it to Hideout Helm. The level intro cutscene shows K. Rool panicking and starting the countdown to fire the untested Blast-O-Matic, despite warnings that the machine could backfire, thus killing the Kremlings and K. Rool himself as well. The final battle of Donkey Kong 64 also showed him to be somewhat of a showboater, constantly showing-off and making taunting gestures, usually whenever he lands a hit on one of the Kongs.
K. Rool's greatest weakness is his own incompetence. It is very common for him to be defeated, simply because he keeps making the same mistake in a fight, such as in Donkey Kong Country, when he keeps throwing his crown, allowing Donkey and Diddy to jump on his head.
K. Rool is the heartless and mentally unstable ruler of the Kremling race, who has on numerous occasions tried to steal Donkey Kong Diddy Kong's Banana Hoard and kidnap the big ape himself. He rules the Kremlings with an iron fist and shows no mercy to any of his subjects, the reason they follow him seems to be of the deep fear they have of him and his tremendous power and not even his strongest underlings dare challenge him. He possesses a great hatred towards the Kongs and he will do whatever it takes to destroy them and their island once and for all.
The reasons for stealing DK and Diddy's Banana Hoard and kidnapping DK are not fully understood. According to Gregg Mayles (designer of Donkey Kong Country and the Banjo-Kazooie series) on Rareware.com's former "scribes" column, K. Rool's motivation for stealing the Banana Hoard is that he wants Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong to starve to death so that he can occupy their treehouse, though why he wishes to do so is even less fully understood since a small tree house is nothing in comparison to his numerous lairs and hideouts (although it could be an example of his deep insanity), or the true reason could be is that he wishes to occupy the tree house as an example of his conquest over Donkey Kong (the current ruler of Donkey Kong Island) and he now considers himself its new ruler by residing in the tree house. Since Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest he seems to be motivated to destroy all Kongs and their island as revenge for what they did to his island kingdom of Crocodile Isle.
Gregg Mayles also states that K. Rool simply just likes bananas, though this explanation is later contradicted in DK: Jungle Climber, where it's revealed that K. Rool despises bananas. In Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, however, Viridi also believes that he and the rest of the Kremlings enjoy eating bananas just as much as the Kong family but given that Super Smash Bros. as a whole is non-canon, the legitimacy of this remains in question. As of now, Nintendo themselves have not made any comment on the subject.
Strangely, K. Rool appears to no longer speak using words in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, instead he communicates through roars and animalistic grunts. K. Rool keep most of his arrogant boasting demeanor, he also appears to like picking up fights. Additionally, he now prominently uses his overweight shape and bulkiness as a weapon in battling as many of his attacks involve ramming his opponents with his stomach which is aided by his body armor.
K. Rool also uses a wide variety of vehicles, from his currently ruined ship, the Gangplank Galleon, to large airships, such as the Flying Krock and K. Kruizer III. DK: King of Swing also shows King K. Rool has in his possession a personal hovercraft, which can move quickly and was green in color. He also uses a type of barrel vehicle in Donkey Kong Barrel Blast.
Powers and Abilities
In combat, K. Rool usually uses his size and strength, trying to tackle, crush, and even leap onto opponents. Although, in Donkey Kong Barrel Blast, King K. Rool's attack is a single claw swipe. Additionally, despite his size, King K. Rool can actually be quite swift and speedy in battle (far more so than Donkey Kong, as shown in Donkey Kong Country where he can leap from one end of the Gangplank Galleon to the other in one jump).
In Donkey Kong Country, K. Rool boasts the ability to summon a barrage of large cannonballs to rain down on Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong. In Donkey Kong Country 2, K. Rool can also teleport.
Aside from simple strength, K. Rool displays very few powers until Donkey Kong 64, originally simply using gadgets and weaponry in battle. In Donkey Kong 64, though, King K. Rool displays the ability to create multiple shockwaves by slamming the ground. He can also perform a powerful uppercut after charging at the Kongs, which can knock Chunky Kong high into in the air, even when he's the same size as K. Rool.
In Donkey Kong Country 2 and Donkey Kong 64, King K. Rool displays his ability to turn invisible. This is first seen in Donkey Kong Country 2, where his blunderbuss leaves a trail of smoke puffs, revealing where he is and in Donkey Kong 64, where only his shadow can be seen on the ground when he is invisible.
In DK: Jungle Climber, K. Rool, after being damaged in battle, can turn temporarily invincible (gaining a reddish coloration) and the ability to assume a ball shape and bounce off surfaces rapidly. After being empowered by a Crystal Banana, K. Rool gains a multitude of different powers, such as manipulating the weather, summoning meteors, breathing a barrage of fireballs, and exploding mines.
K. Rool is also shown to be extremely durable. This is most prominently shown in Donkey Kong Country 2, when K. Rool survived tumbling down Crocodile Island before falling into shark-infested waters, and in Donkey Kong 64, when he was pummeled by K. Lumsy.
K. Rool mentions having a wife in Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble!. Specifically, after KAOS is defeated a second time, Baron K. Roolenstein appears, stating he built KAOS from his wife's best pots and pans. It is unknown if K. Rool is telling a joke, or if he actually has a wife. However, in a December 23, 1999 edition of the Scribes section of Rare's website, Leigh Loveday revealed that K. Rool's "my wife is going to kill me" line was mere "a typically throwaway Vic and Bob reference".
In the episode "The Big Switch-A-Roo" of the Donkey Kong Country animated series, King K. Rool mentions his mother, and in "The Kongo Bongo Festival of Lights" he mentions his "slithering siblings", thus revealing he is not an only child.
In Super Smash Bros. Brawl, King K. Rool's trophy information erroneously states that Kaptain K. Rool is the brother of King K. Rool when in reality, the two characters are one in the same. This lead to misconceptions that they were two different people in the Japanese continuity of the Donkey Kong Country series and that information was left unchanged, most likely because of their lack of knowledge on the series. However, this was later proven to be false and was either an oversight or a tongue-in-cheek description of the character's different identities.
The only other known family K. Rool has is his younger brother K. Lumsy, who was introduced in Donkey Kong 64 and is a crocodile of colossal size. Unlike his older sibling, K. Lumsy is kind-hearted and doesn't wish to harm the Kongs or their island home. K. Rool is by disgusted by K. Lumsy's benevolent nature and even locked him up saying that he will never be a true Kremling.
- In the English versions, he was voiced by Chris Sutherland in Donkey Kong 64, and Benedict Campbell in the animated series.
- In the Japanese versions, he was voiced by Toshihide Tsuchiya in both the Donkey Kong and Mario series, and Jūrōta Kosugi in the animated series.
- K. Rool's persona, Kaptain K. Rool, is referenced in only one other game besides Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest, albeit obscurely; in Donkey Kong 64, inside the sunken ship off to a corner, there is a book entitled "Kaptain K. Rool's Log Book".
- Quite obviously, Baron K. Roolenstein, one of King K. Rool's alias' and alter-ego's, is based off of Frankenstein, who created Frankenstein's Monster, similarly to how Baron K. Roolenstein created KAOS, except Baron K. Roolenstein didn't use the dead to create KAOS but used Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong as living batteries for KAOS.
- Cranky Kong mentions in the instruction booklet to the game Donkey Kong 64 that K. Rool had given up his silly disguises. This proved to be true, as he has not gone incognito since Baron K. Roolenstein.
- K. Rool was featured as the villain of Nintendo's 2003 version of Camp Hyrule. He caused chaos in Camp Hyrule by creating a massive earthquake.
- Interestingly, K. Rool's name is pronounced two different ways during the first episode of the Donkey Kong Country television series. First, he was referred to as "King Kay-Rool" and then "King Kuh-Rool" shortly afterwards. However, after that episode, the former pronunciation was never used again.
- According to Rare Ltd. (Developer of many Donkey Kong video games and creators of King K. Rool), "King Kay-Rool" is the correct pronunciation.
- K. Rool does not have his bloodshot eye in the Donkey Kong Country television series. However one of his eyes does sometimes bulge out in the series and he even briefly gains a bloodshot eye in the episode Baby Kong after being punched in the face by Donkey Kong.
- King K. Rool's design in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate appears to remarkably similar to a popular fan-made render of what K. Rool would potentially look in a Super Smash Bros. video game.
- K. Rool's design in Ultimate has been received well by the public and appears to take aspects from both his older and more recent designs.
- King K. Rool originally had a tail which was eventually removed when his appearance changed in later games after Donkey Konga. However, he regains his tail in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, but its length has been reduced.
- In Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, it was revealed that King K. Rool's golden underbelly from the past games was indeed a piece of armor due to the fact that it can be broken by another fighter in the game.