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|“||I don't need to bite to fight!||”|
|—Young Viper while fighting the gorilla bandit, Secrets of the Furious Five|
Master Viper is one of the supporting characters of the Kung Fu Panda franchise. She is a member of the Furious Five and the daughter of Great Master Viper, as well as one of Master Shifu's students at the Jade Palace. She is a master of the Snake style of Hung Ga Kung Fu.
Viper was born as the beloved daughter of Great Master Viper, protector of the village where he relied on his venomous fangs to defeat his enemies. The Great Master hoped that she would carry on his legacy once she was born, however, she was born without fangs, and ceased to develop them as she grew older, much to the dismay of her father. To make her father smile, Viper took up ribbon dancing, blossoming into a very graceful dancer, though this only seemed to mildly please the old snake.
During the Moon Festival, Viper was too timid to attend the festival with her father, and instead stayed at home with her mother. But when her father was confronted by a gorilla bandit who attacked the village and used venom-proof armor to shatter the great master's poison fangs, Viper, hearing he was in trouble, raced to help him.
Though she was momentarily intimidated when hearing the bandit's remarks about her ribbon dancing, she mustered the courage she needed to outwit the gorilla by confusing him with her swift dancing skills and tying him up with her ribbon. With the bandit defeated, the weak Great Master Viper shared a fangless, genuine smile with his daughter, both of them overjoyed with her victory. Thus, her father's legacy was secure with his daughter becoming a mighty warrior on her own terms.Some time later, Viper put her fighting skills to use when she came to learn Kung Fu under Shifu, eventually achieving the rank of Master and forming the Furious Five together with Tigress, Monkey, Mantis, and Crane.
Viper was first seen training with Master Shifu with the rest of the Furious Five, where Shifu told her to improve on her "subtlety". Their training was cut short, however, when Master Oogway had a troubling vision: Tai Lung will break free from prison and return to the Valley of Peace. In response to this, the Dragon Warrior Tournament was instigated, in which each member of the Five participated in performing their skills to their Masters and the entire Valley. During the tournament, Oogway suddenly sensed the presence of the Dragon Warrior. Viper and her comrades quickly gathered in a line for the choosing. As Oogway approached, it appeared as though his finger was moving towards Tigress's direction, but then a portly panda named Po unexpectedly fell out of the sky right in front of Tigress. Taking this as a sign from the universe, Oogway declared Po the Dragon Warrior, stunning Viper, the Five, Shifu, the villagers, and even Po himself.
After the tournament, the Five all headed over to the Training Hall to train, with Viper honing her flexibility and reflexes in the Field of Fiery Death. She and the others stopped training momentarily to watch Po spar with the Adversary. The sparring ended with Po being knocked into the training course, and his following ordeal ended in him being burned in the same course Viper was training in minutes earlier. That night, while traveling up to the student barracks, the Five mocked Po over his lack of ability to do Kung Fu. Though Viper laughed with the others, she did not actually mock the panda, instead worrying how "the poor guy is just going to get himself killed." Neither she nor the others noticed Po listening in on them.
The next morning, it appeared as though Po had quit, but when Shifu and the Five enter the training courtyard, they were surprised to find that not only had Po not quit, he arrived there first. Po's training began, with Viper being the first to spar with him. She asked if he was ready, and Po barely had time to confirm before she flung him into the air and slammed him down again, apologizing immediately afterwards. When Shifu sparred with Po himself, Viper watched nervously as he flung the panda around and eventually kicked him out of the Palace and down the steps. Noticing Po's tenacity and gaining some respect for him, Viper silenced Mantis with a hiss when he commented on Po's "bouncing" down the stairs.
Once Po made his way back to the Palace, Viper and Mantis attempted to help him recover through means of acupuncture. However, Po's bulk made finding the right nerve points difficult, thus Mantis caused Po even more pain each time he stuck a needle in his back. The three eventually started up a conversation, commenting on Shifu's harsh way of treating Po. Eventually, Tigress joined their conversation and told the story of Tai Lung while Mantis continued to apply more needles to Po's back. At the very end, he accidentally slipped up one needle and triggered Po's facial nerve, temporarily paralyzing him and stopping his heart.
Later that night, Viper and the others all have dinner together in the barracks kitchen. Po served his noodle soup to the Five (excluding Tigress), and Viper complimented that it was amazing. She also laughed along with the others (again, excluding Tigress) when Po did an impression of Master Shifu. But when the master eventually showed up in the middle of Po's impression, Viper immediately stopped laughing. He was shocked with all the others upon hearing Shifu's announcement of Oogway's passing and Tai Lung's breakout, and stuck by Tigress' side when she insisted they handled Tai Lung themselves. Later that night, after Shifu outlawed their request, Viper and the others followed Tigress out of the Palace that night and explained that they were joining Tigress and together to find and stop Tai Lung.
After days of traveling, Viper and the others finally located Tai Lung on the Thread of Hope just outside the Valley. A long battle ensues, each of the Five using incredible skill and prowess to fight the snow leopard. Viper assisted by using her incredible skills to fight Tai Lung after Tigress falls off the bridge but Crane saves her. Then Viper gets attacked and calls out to Monkey to save her then they all attack together sending Tai Lung to his doom. But when it seemed like they had won, Tai Lung reappears again and performs a chi block on four of the Five (Viper included) — only sparing Crane so he was able to carry the rest of them back to the Palace in means of a message.
Shifu and Po had just finished another day's worth of extensive training when they finally returned, Crane exhausted and the others paralyzed. The Five each told about their grieving experience, which placed doubt into Po when he realized that not even his idols, let alone five Kung Fu Masters, could stop Tai Lung. But Shifu still believed he could defeat him, and they all went to the Hall of Warriors in the Jade Palace to retrieve the Dragon Scroll for Po. Shifu, Viper, and the other Five watched as Po opened the scroll, and appeared just as confused when he said it was blank. Believing nothing else could be done, Shifu offered to stay behind to hold back Tai Lung while they and the rest of the Valley escape. Master and students shared a final respectful bow, knowing that Tai Lung may very well kill him.
While Po went to find his father, Viper and the other Five assisted in evacuating the Valley. Viper was tasked with gathering the southern farmers, to which she did so before moving out with the others. They were all just about out of the Valley when a large golden gust pulsed and blew past them. The Five and the other villagers returned to investigate and found Po victorious in his battle with Tai Lung. Marveling at the panda's skill that enabled him to do what they could not, Tigress led Viper and the others of the Five (as well as the villagers) in a respectful bow to Po as a Kung Fu Master.
After defeating several boar bandits, Viper (along with the rest of the Furious Five) were shocked to find out that Po was going to be hosting the formal Winter Feast dinner at the Jade Palace. The Five offered to help, but Po insisted he could do it himself. When he was later overwhelmed by the myriad of responsibilities, he finally decided to call upon the Five to assist him with the preparations. Viper performed her "Stars Of Destiny" move to hold up the table lanterns that Tigress threw with her "Tahlia Leap".
When all the tasks had been completed, Viper later sat at the table with all the other Kung Fu Masters for the Palace Winter Feast. However, the formal dinner was soon interrupted by Po himself, who explained to the Masters the need to comply to his own family traditions, and thus excused himself to be at home with his father for the holiday. After Po left, Viper mentioned how she loved cooking with her sisters when she was younger. Viper and the rest of the Five understood Po's decision, and they all decided to join Po at the Noodle Shop. Later, Viper partook in a group portrait of the Furious Five, Po, Mr. Ping, Shifu, and Wo Hop.
"The Art of Balance"
She appeared at the start in Po's dream, facing a group of bandits alongside the other members of her team. Much to their chagrin, however, the panda suddenly dropped in out of and right on top of her and her team. After that, a battle ensued between the Five and the bandits. Viper did not appear again after Po's dream ended.
"The Dragon Chef"
Viper and the Five help out at the noodle restaurant for a day as Mr. Ping was suffering from the Goose Flu. She helped by flattening out some dough, which made her feel "kinda dizzy". Unfortunately as they would soon learn, Kung Fu is not the best tool for running a restaurant, and when things got out of hand, Mr. Ping made a return and impressed them all with his expert handling of the customers. Once everything had been sorted out, Viper, along with her friends, praised him as the "Dragon Chef".
"Touch of Destiny"
She is seen during a game of "Elimination Tag" when Crane sat down on a log. She jumped out of the log and tagged him, startling Crane in the process. She then went off and was surprised and tagged by Monkey, who in turn was soon tagged by Mantis. Later on, after Tigress tags Po and wins, Viper and the others return as Po asks the group if they'd like to participate in another game.
"Brimming with cheeriness and positivity, Viper likes to make sure that everyone is happy — and if that means she has to battle a horde of rampaging rhinos using her lightning quick moves and strong as steel tail, she's happy to do so with a smile."
So far, Viper has appeared mainly as a background character for most of the show. However, she did play a larger role in "Ladies of the Shade" where she helped Po and Crane obtain an artifact back. Viper later had the lead role in the episode "Serpent's Tooth".
Viper and her friends were first seen in the Training Hall, staring in awe at Po as he performed the feat of stuffing as many bean buns in his mouth as he can fit. While the others cheer him on, Viper cringed in terror and actually fainted when Po succeeds in his stunt.
Viper was shown to be the most transparent in her feelings and the most openly compassionate. On the way to Gongmen City, she and her teammates overheard Po telling Tigress about his issues with his father, and she showed the most sympathy toward him. When the group hid inside a Chinese dragon costume and witnessed the wolves' brutal treatment of the city's residents, Viper's face was shown to be openly horrified.
Later, when the group was captured by Shen's wolves in a plan to get into the peacock's Tower, Viper used the end of her tail to pick the lock on Tigress' handcuffs. This allowed the rest of the group to be freed from their chains and to destroy the cannon in Shen's throne room. However, Po let Shen escape and they were all forced to flee the Tower when the peacock had the building destroyed. They went back to Gongmen Jail to hide, where they confronted Po about his failure to capture Shen. While her teammates were too afraid to stop Tigress from fighting with the panda, Viper tried to plead with her and warned Po to stay down when he was beaten.
Leaving the panda behind, the Furious Five set out to stop Shen's plans to conquer China without him. They decided to destroy his arsenal of cannons by blowing up the cannon foundry. However, Po unwittingly foiled the plan when he was spotted fighting with Shen inside the building. The group was forced to snuff out the explosives, and Shen's wolves were descend on them. As they fought, Viper told Tigress to go help Po while she and the others fought off the wolves. But Tigress was unable to reach him in time, and the Furious Five became Shen's captives again.
The night Shen set out to begin his invasion, Viper was chained up with her comrades on one of his many ships. The peacock planned to kill all of them when they reached the harbor, but to everyone's surprise Po appeared and came to their rescue. Once he freed them from their chains, the Five fought bravely against Shen's wolves. During the battle, Viper used a technique called "Puppet of Death", in which she used her snaky body to control the arms of an unconscious wolf while Tigress carried her.
They battled against Shen's army, and were soon joined by Master Shifu, who had arrived from the Valley of Peace, as well as Masters Ox and Croc. Viper and the other Kung Fu masters almost won, but were blasted into the Gongmen Harbor by Shen's cannon, leaving them all badly injured. Viper watched, along with everybody else, watched in shock as Po stood on an upturned boat in the middle of the harbor, and deflected all of Shen's cannonballs.By the time Shen was killed, Viper was up on dry land along with the rest of the Five. And when Po emerged out of the water, Viper then jumps to hug Po, along with Mantis and Monkey. Viper then happily watched the fireworks along with all of her friends.
"Viper is the 'mother hen' of the group. It takes a cool head and a warm heart to manage the sometimes conflicting personalities of the Furious Five. But don't let her gentle nature fool you. Viper is a lightning fast warrior capable of taking down the most intimidating foe. Her power lies in her strength, her sinuous nature, her precision... oh, and then there's that deadly strike of hers."
In defiance of the villainous stereotype of snakes, Master Viper is the most charming, kind, compassionate, and sweetest of the Five, as demonstrated with her quickly developing empathy for Po as his indomitable tenacity became obvious. She also demonstrates a great deal of dislike for displays of cruelty or injustice. This is especially presented when she (undercover with Po and the rest of the Five) urged Po to do something when she saw a sheep in trouble, and was also the first one to resort to violence once the cover is blown. She also tries to break up a fight between Tigress and Po, even trying to tell Po to stay down after being knocked down by Tigress.
"The traditional snake style is flexible, fluid, moldable, elastic and explosive. Viper's ability to contort into any shape makes her nearly impossible to hit. She uses her lighting fast reflexes to avoid blows before she counterstrikes—then, by wrapping her body around opponents' limbs, uses the opponents' energy to counter strike with deadly efficiency."
One of Viper's signature moves is coiling around one of her opponent's arms and pulling it forward, making them punch themselves in the face with their own fist. She did this in battle with Tai Lung and with a wolf in the second film. She presumably invented this technique as a child when she used it on a gorilla bandit who attacked her father.
Viper has also used a move called "Puppet of Death". It is similar to the technique of coiling around her opponent to manipulate his movements, except with this technique, the opponent is unconscious and holding weapons. It also requires assistance from someone else to carry the unconscious person through a crowd while Viper swings his weapons at their enemies.
Another one of Viper's moves is called "Stars of Destiny", which seems to involve using shuriken. This was seen when she aided Po in place settings for the formal Winter Feast dinner at the Jade Palace.
Viper has displayed an ability to swallow large objects, akin to the abilities of her species.
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When Viper was born, Great Master Viper was relieved to finally have a child to continue his legacy as a warrior, but was taken aback to see Viper was born without venomous fangs, believing she could not become a warrior without them. This made the old master unhappy, and as Viper grew, she strove to please her father and make him smile with her ribbon dancing, and though this made him smile somewhat, it did not ease his discontent.
However, when a gorilla challenged him and shattered his poisonous fangs with his armor, Viper immediately raced to his rescue and used her swift ribbon dancing skills to defeat the gorilla. Viper's father was in awe at her ability to fight without the use of poisonous fangs, and he accepted her as she was, proud of his daughter's skill and moved by her courage.
Though Viper's mother was also concerned that her daughter was born without fangs, she seemed less displeased than her husband. When Viper was too timid to attend the Moon Festival, her mother stayed at her side to comfort her, and called her back when the young snake left after hearing her father was in danger. It is assumed that she, like her husband, became more confident in Viper after she defeated the bandit and rescued her father.
In Kung Fu Panda Holiday, Viper mentioned how she used to love cooking with her sisters during the holidays, indicating that she enjoyed spending time with them. Since she was the first-born of her parents, it is likely that they are younger siblings.
The Furious FiveViper is more or less the "mother hen" of the group. With her warm and understanding personality, she often acts out as peace-bringer between the diversely different personalities of the Five. She bears a great deal of respect and trust for them all; however, she occasionally displays discomfort at the rude or less-cooperative behavior of her friends, and was shown to be more sympathetic toward Po while the rest of the Five were harsher and mocked him.
Like the rest of the Five, Viper greatly respects Shifu as her master and is an obedient student. In the first film, she and the rest of the Five were often met with stern demands and criticisms by the master, such as his pointing out to Viper about her failure with "subtlety". However, Shifu did entrust her and the others to evacuate the Valley of Peace, saying he was proud of them, and has since become less harsh with the Five.
Unlike the rest of the Five, who felt disdain for Po or made fun of him after he was chosen as Dragon Warrior, Viper quickly felt empathy for him, believing him to be just a victim of bad luck. Like the rest of them, however, she also didn't believe he was the true Dragon Warrior, but became impressed by Po's struggling determination in his training, and later in his sense of humor and great cooking skills, and like most of the other Five, she took a liking to him. Since the original movie, she now respects him as the Dragon Warrior as well as a comrade and a friend.
- In Kung Fu Panda, when Po mentions how all of the Five possess a unique and useful quality but him, he says "venom" in referral to Viper. But in Secrets of the Furious Five, it was revealed that she was never even born with fangs to inject any such venom. It now seems Viper has grown a pair of small, blunt fangs.
- Though Viper was shown as a firstborn, only child in Secrets of the Furious Five, she mentioned in Kung Fu Panda Holiday that she has sisters of whom she loved to cook with during the Winter Feast.
- The second film demonstrates that Viper has some experience in lock picking.
- Viper's battle weakness is frontal attacks.
- For designing Viper, character artist Nicolas Marlet used Chinese poetry for the markings on Viper's skin.
- Viper was the most difficult character to animate.
- Viper has 120 bones along the length of her body.
In popular culture
- A spoof version of Viper appears with Po and the rest of the Furious Five in the MAD episodes "Kung Fu Blander" and "PO-blivion".