King Dedede (anime character)
- This article is about King Dedede as he appears in Kirby: Right Back at Ya!. For King Dedede as he appears in the games, see King Dedede.
|“||I'll show them kids! If I can't earn respect, I'll just buy it...from Night Mare Enterprises!||”|
— King Dedede
King Dedede is one of the principal characters and supporting villains of the anime series Kirby: Right Back at Ya!. He is a large blue portly bird-like man who proclaims himself the king of Dream Land and resides with his court in Castle Dedede. He claims jurisdiction and authority over the people of Cappy Town, but they often ignore him in this regard. This behavior prompts Dedede to try and force their attention by calling monsters into Dream Land using the Night Mare Enterprises monster delivery system, though placing him in perpetual debt to N.M.E. in the process while his monsters are bested by Kirby.
King Dedede is voiced by Ted Lewis in the English dub of the show and by Kenichi Ogata in the original Japanese version. In the Japanese version, he often ends his sentences with "zoi", which does not actually mean anything.
King Dedede appears mainly the same as he does in the games; with a large, round belly, blue body and eyes, yellow feet, defined arms, a beak, a red robe, a gilded hat topped with a puffball, and an obi across his belly, which in this instance, is slightly wider to cover up more of his waist. He does not wear the beige kimono that King Dedede from the game series wears in later installments. King Dedede is also not typically seen with his hammer, though he can pull it out whenever he gets sufficiently angry. As expected in a cartoon series, King Dedede is quite expressive, though this usually manifests in outrage or gloating.
King Dedede is defined by his vanity, selfishness, greed, and ignorance. Nearly every problem in Dream Land is caused by him in some form or another, as he pursues his whims and ambitions to the detriment of his subjects' well-being. Despite his well-known intemperance, King Dedede manages to hold on to a vast fortune which he uses to maintain his castle and purchase equipment and monsters from Night Mare Enterprises, though it is strongly implied that he would go bankrupt if he were ever forced to pay his debt to N.M.E. in full. King Dedede's attention is often focused on efforts to get rid of Kirby however he can, as Dedede is intensely jealous of the pink Star Warrior and continually outraged at the puffball often foiling his plans to ruin Dream Land in one way or another. However, due to his incompetence, he always ends up failing either partially or completely at whatever scheme he is pursuing.
King Dedede has a short temper, which causes him to regularly abuse his closest assistant Escargoon. Despite this abuse, Escargoon is the only character who is willing to stand close to him under normal circumstances. Dedede is also defined by his bad habits, particularly when it comes to overeating and dental hygiene, which comes to haunt him in A Dental Dilemma. Despite his royal status, he is not above screaming or bawling like a toddler when the situation encourages it. Despite all his bad qualities, King Dedede does have a softer side, which sometimes comes out when greater threats comes to Dream Land; a prime example being in Prediction Predicament - Part II where he decides to build Kirby and the Cappy kids a playground before the world ends.
One of King Dedede's more notable personality traits is his extraordinary ignorance. He has a habit of mis-mashing words together when he speaks, which is likely meant to serve as a sign of his inadequate vocabulary. In several episodes - such as A Novel Approach - it is also shown that King Dedede cannot read, which acts as a point of embarrassment for the King, though this is not always a consistent trait of his. He is also shown to be very bad at math, as in eNeMeE Elementary, he cannot solve the equation '1 + 1' without assistance from Escargoon. An explanation for this lack of knowledge appears in the episode Teacher's Threat, where Mr. Chip examines an x-ray image of King Dedede's head showing there to be no brain inside his skull.
Due to King Dedede's nature, basically none of the characters he interacts with like him, though due to his status as king, they must respect him as such to some degree. Despite this animosity, King Dedede is sometimes able to have genuine moments of growth with other members of the cast.
- Kirby - Kirby is the primary target of King Dedede's ire throughout the series, as the king constantly tries to dispatch monsters from N.M.E. to get rid of him. It becomes clear throughout the series that the main reason for this is because King Dedede is intensely jealous of Kirby's power and relationships, and sometimes, even he is moved by Kirby's carefree child-like nature. Kirby in return does not mind King Dedede much, despite being attacked by him constantly.
- Escargoon - Escargoon is King Dedede's most loyal servant, and as such, receives the most amount of abuse directly from the king. Despite his loyalty, Escargoon resents the king in secret, and relishes in any misfortune that comes Dedede's way.
- Meta Knight - King Dedede views Meta Knight as an incompetent soldier due to his perceived inability to deal with Kirby, and as such, often disregards him. Meta Knight in return has no respect for the king, but enjoys his ability to operate under the king's radar.
- Waddle Dees - Despite the king's cruelty, the Waddle Dees of the castle work tirelessly to tend to his every need in exchange for having a place to live. King Dedede comes to realize their importance after he sells them all off to help pay his debt to Night Mare Enterprises in the episode Waddle While You Work.
- Residents of Cappy Town - The inhabitants of Cappy Town are always wary of King Dedede's abusive behavior and openly defy him on many occasions despite his threats. Instead of their supposed king, Cappy Town's people consult with the great Kabu for leadership and guidance.
- N.M.E. Sales Guy - King Dedede is tied down by Night Mare Enterprises due to an enormous debt he owes them from all the monsters he ordered. The Sales Guy in particular seeks only to worsen this situation by buttering the king up with new monster deals, with no compassion toward Dedede's predicament, often directly mocking him when the monsters don't perform as Dedede had hoped.
Role in Kirby: Right Back at Ya!
Although not serving as the main villain of the show (that role being held by eNeMeE), King Dedede appears in every episode, and in the vast majority of these, serves as Kirby's most direct antagonist. He typically does this by calling in monsters from Night Mare Enterprises at great personal expense to try to get rid of Kirby in any way he can think of, which it is later learned he does mainly because he is intensely jealous of Kirby's popularity among the King's subjects. Due in part to Kirby's power (or sheer luck) and his friends, and in part to Dedede's incompetence, these attempts to get rid of Kirby always ultimately fail, and usually (often literally) blow up in the King's face.
When not trying to get rid of Kirby, King Dedede is often the cause of other problems in his kingdom, as he often hatches schemes that are self-serving in nature and cause problems for the kingdom and its subjects, whether that be attempting to bulldoze Whispy Woods Forest in order to build a country club, causing the kingdom to be buried in a sea of trash as a reprisal from N.M.E. for his failure to pay his debts, attempting to directly steal from his people or mind control them using Channel DDD, or bullying various Cappy Town denizens by trying to undermine their roles, among many other things.
Despite his villainous nature, King Dedede is often shown to be sympathetic, as he suffers greatly as the result of his failed plans and relationships, and sometimes due to sheer dumb luck. Due to his actions, he is also reviled by basically everyone else in the show, not the least of which being his assistant Escargoon. As the show progresses, however, he gradually eases his attempts to attack Kirby, and eventually admits in D'Preciation Day that he has a soft spot for the pink puffball, due to making life in the kingdom more interesting for him. He also has a few genuinely admirable moments, most notably in the episode Prediction Predicament - Part II where, after a change of heart, Dedede charitably builds a playground for the children of Cappy Town. Although he never fully changes into a protagonist, he is effectively neutralized after the events of Fright to the Finish, as his main method of causing mischief by calling monsters from N.M.E is taken from him when the aforementioned company is destroyed.
- Main article: King Dedede (anime character)/filmography
- In the Japanese version of Curio's Curious Discovery, Escargoon mentions that King Dedede "has been on the throne for 300 years and is the 17,052nd king of Dream Land", though this claim is very dubious.
- King Dedede fancies himself a golfer, and can often be seen "practicing" using his hammer, though this usually just serves as an excuse to whack other characters instead.
- The N.M.E. Sales Guy has several pet names for King Dedede. These include, but are not limited to: "Triple D", "Three D", "D-Man", "D-Meister", or simply "D".
- King Dedede is one of the five recurring characters who appears in every episode of the main anime series. The other four are Kirby, Tiff, Tuff, and Escargoon.
- In the Japanese version of the anime, it is repeatedly mentioned that King Dedede uses his own currency, "deden" (a parody of yen, the Japanese standard currency), which is used for all of his transactions with Night Mare Enterprises. The currency is mentioned less often in the English dub, and its name is variably translated as "dede-dollars" or "D-bills".
King Dedede and Escargoon embracing before the world ends in Prediction Predicament - Part II
King Dedede and Kirby having a sentimental moment in Prediction Predicament - Part II
Oddly-detailed drawing of King Dedede from the cartoon in Cartoon Buffoon
King Dedede under the effects of Togeira's siphoning of his anger
King Dedede possessed by the Demon Frog