Donkey Kong
Donkey Kong

Art: Jonathan Gray

Full name: Donkey Kong
Height: 4'5" hunched over (about 135cm)
Weight: 450 lbs.
Home: DK's Treehouse, DK Isle
First appearance: Donkey Kong (arcade)
Last appeared in: Donkey Kong 64
"Banana slamma!"
Kong of the Jungle

Just who is Donkey Kong? These days, it can be rather hard to tell, especially if you're not familiar with the Donkey Kong Country series. Donkey Kong first appeared in the arcade game of the same name released in 1981, after Shigeru Miyamoto lost the rights to make a Popeye game. In this early title, DK played the role of Mario's abused pet that took revenge on his cruel master by kidnapping his girlfriend, Pauline. After Mario defeated DK, and once again imprisoned him, it was up to DK's estranged son to come to his rescue in Donkey Kong Jr. After the wildly unsuccessful Donkey Kong 3, the Kong family disappeared for many years, until 1993, when a relatively unheard of company called "Rare" released a new DK game that took the world by storm. Donkey Kong Country starred an all-new Donkey Kong who was said to be the son of DK Jr. and thusly the grandson of the original DK.

Along with the original DK who was now old and withered and had earned himself the nickname "Cranky," DKC introduced many new branches to the Kong family tree. In the almost-as-popular sequel, we got to meet Wrinkly Kong, Cranky's wife and mother of the never seen DK Jr. as well as Dixie Kong, who was said to be some distant cousin of DK. Since Cranky is too old, and DK Jr. seems to have disappeared, nowadays most of the monkey business is being preformed by the DKC DK, or as he's known in Japan, "Super Donkey Kong."

When he's not trying to save a fellow ape from the sinister K. Rool, DK can usually be seen as a playable character in new N64 games like Mario Kart 64, Super Smash Brothers, or Mario Golf. Of course, now DK is getting ready to embark on his biggest adventure ever in Donkey Kong 64.

Written by JJ McCullough.

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