Nintendo Family Profile | The Kongs

By Adam Riley 23.05.2004 1

The Kong Family
It's time to meet those damn dirty apes...
Profile by Nick Cheesman [ Sharpshot :: Cubed³ Writer & Reviewer ]

Cranky Donkey Diddy Chunky Funky Candy
Dixie Wrinkly Swanky Kiddy Tiny Lanky

A family must endure many things.  Long boring car rides together suffering countless "Are where there yet?" questions, awkward family get-togethers where nobody is sure of the occasion, and, of course the old chestnut, the kidnapping of one of their family members by a large over-weight crocodile.  Yes, the Kongs have been through much and their generations span decades, and although ageing does not seem to have taken effect, new arrivals have come and gone all due to the public response whilst Donkey Kong himself has sat by getting out of shape on bananas, causing the family to worry about how they will make a living.  Yes, it is time to meet the Kongs…

Time Line: 23 years, 1981-2004
Generations: Three
Members: Twelve; Donkey, Diddy, Cranky, Candy, Funky, Dixie, Kiddy, Swanky, Wrinkly, Chunky, Tiny and Lanky.
Species: As you may have guessed, the Kongs are in fact a family of monkeys (and are not donkeys as has been speculated)…basically.  You see, some of them are actually different species, so cross-breeding has probably been a factor…but less said about that the better.  The Kongs are made up of apes (DK, Cranky, Funky, Candy, Dixie, Tiny, Chunky, Swanky and Wrinkly), monkeys (Diddy) and baboons (Lanky and Kiddy).  No, I said there were not any donkeys…
Location: The Kong family all reside on an island resembling DK's face (now that is powerful and clever wind erosion), where mountains, ice-lands, mines, and great coral reefs reside, along with the dense tropical jungle.  All their houses are built of usual barrels, putting good use to the opposable thumb.
Family Tree: The whole Kong family connection is slightly lost among all the very similar characters, and at times you might think Rare just threw together odd monkeys to make a quick Donkey Kong game.  Hazard the thought.  But the family begins with Cranky Kong.  The old ape had the son Donkey Kong, but whom he had DK with is anybody's guess - perhaps his wife was killed by an Kremling and RARE is currently making a DK prequel about how Cranky avenges her death…a sure-fire hit I would imagine.  Or maybe it was too-old Wrinkly Kong, the granny Ghost who appears to Dixie and Kiddy to haunt them or possibly guide them in their childish quest; though it is rumored Luigi accidentally caught Wrinkly on his little ghost-hunting escapade.  But, like any good father, Cranky criticises DK at every turn and makes it his business to query DK and company whenever they are on a journey to a) Collect bananas, b) Fight Kremlings, c) Make up a quick DK game.
DK's love-lust is Candy Kong, who although not actually married to DK is an item with the tie wearer, but whether it is a case of incest is another question altogether!  DK's friend/possible brother is the "coolest ape there is", Funky, who between surfing, fishing and piloting a plane (those thumbs are really put to good use, see?) hangs with DK, enjoying his stash of bananas.  Make of that what you will.  Then come the cousins; the beefed-up rip-off of DK, Chunky; the crazy, long-limbed Lanky and the afro-boasting, quiz-host Swanky.  Adopted?  Related?  Or just invaded the tree house one day and became DK's banana buddies?  Any explanation will do.
The younger generation then comes in with Diddy, DK's possible son or more probably nephew (either way the money is on Candy being the mother!), Dixie - with her twin/replacement Tiny, who seem to have some sort of association with Chunky; and Kiddy, the baby, but who has been left completely up in the air, and let us just say a stork brought him to the Kong residence to save on disturbing explanations.

Main Features
Bodily Appearance: All the Kongs boast brown fur, except for the women who seem to have died their hair blonde and styled them to make them more feminine, or maybe evolution kicked in without us humans noticing.  Cranky has a long white beard, just to show he is old, whilst Wrinkly, as you would imagine, has white frilly hair, though her transparency makes it a little debatable.
Clothing: All the clothes they wear pretty much represent their one-sided characters; Cranky a grey cardigan, Candy a pink bow and dress, Funky a bandana, shades, sandals and necklace, Diddy a cap and red T-Shirt, Dixie a pink hat and outfit, Swanky, a grey overcoat, Wrinkly being a ghost does not wear clothes but does still needs glasses, Kiddy blue baby clothes (obviously), Lanky dungarees with a white shirt, Tiny exactly the same as Lanky plus a flower for girly good measure, Chunky a blue waistcoat and white shirt.  However, nobody can match DK's lack of clothes - a single red tie, just long enough to cover certain parts of his body...

Each of the Kongs have had their fair share of adventures, from taking part in Golf tournaments with other Nintendo characters, as well as go-karting, playing tennis, being forced to go around a board and perform horrific mini-games, or simply leaping on rhinos, swordfish, frogs, parrots, spiders and ostriches. However each of them has their own abilities, be it Cranky's conjuring up potions to give new abilities, Chunky's strength, Tiny's ability to shrink, Dixie's ability to use her hair to fly, Funky's to fly a plane, Candy's to hold a dance studio (or get kidnapped), Kiddy's to be unbelievably annoying, Lanky's to blow himself up into a balloon, Wrinkly's to teach, Swanky's to hold game shows and give questions, Diddy's to run and jump higher and DK's to star in games as well as do everything all the other Kong's can do.

Gaming Highlights
Videogame Roster:
  • Donkey Kong (Arcade)
  • Crazy Kong (Arcade)
  • Donkey Kong (Atari 2600)
  • Donkey Kong (NES)
  • Donkey Kong (Intellivision)
  • Donkey Kong Jr. (Arcade)
  • Donkey Kong Jr. (Atari 2600)
  • Donkey Kong Jr. (Intellivision)
  • Donkey Kong (PC)
  • Donkey Kong 3 (Arcade)
  • Donkey Kong Jr. (Colecovision)
  • Donkey Kong Jr (Atari 7800)
  • Donkey Kong Jr. Math (NES)
  • Donkey Kong 3 (NES)
  • Donkey Kong Country (SNES, GBA)
  • Super Mario Kart (SNES)
  • Game & Watch Gallery 2, Donkey Kong (GBC)
  • Game & Watch Gallery 3, Donkey Kong Jr. (GBC)
  • Donkey Kong (Game Boy)
  • Donkey Kong Land (Game Boy)
  • Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest (SNES, Game Boy, GBA soon)
  • Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie's Double Trouble (SNES)
  • Donkey Kong Land (GBC)
  • Donkey Kong Land 2 (GBC)
  • Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC)
  • Diddy Kong Racing (N64)
  • Donkey Kong 64 (N64)
  • Mario Tennis 64 (N64)
  • Mario Kart 64 (N64)
  • Mario Golf (N64)
  • Mario Party (N64)
  • Mario Party 2 (N64)
  • Mario Party 3 (N64)
  • Super Smash Bros. (N64)
  • Super Smash Bros. Melee (GC)
  • Mario Kart: Double Dash!! (GC)
  • Mario Party 4 (GC)
  • Mario Party 5 (GC)
  • Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour (GC)
  • Diddy Kong Pilot (GBA, now changed to Banjo Pilot)
  • Donkey Konga (GC)
  • Regularity: While in recent years the Kong family have not seen their own solo outings and been more a part of mass Nintendo mascot antics, through the decades they have done it all from teaching Maths, to playing tennis, to flying planes and even shooting one another with crude weaponry.  But when it is all said and done there is only one thing left for them do - sit on their lazy monkey butts and eat each others nits.

    Best Appearance: With an appearance list as big as theirs, it is debatable what their greatest game is.  Yet many claim one of the greatest games of all time is Donkey Kong Country.  This is simply because it took the Kongs to new platforming heights, with one of the most addictive and fun games to grace the SNES.

    Do Not Mention...
    The one Kong who has caused several law suits and cynical comments about the family has been King Kong.  And once and for all, the huge over grown Hollywood loved Ape is in no way related to The Kong family and Nintendo will tell you Donkey Kong was not influenced in any way by King Kong.  Of course we all know what is really true…

    In Closing...
    The Kongs are a right royal barrel of monkeys and there is not much you cannot love about that.  They have been with Nintendo from the dawn of Mario and have been a valuable asset ever since.  Even though novelties have been used to experiment with the Kong license, not mentioning any recent drum hitting game, the Kongs are renowned for delivering great games and we hope they do not fall out anytime soon or attack the Statue of Liberty for King Kong Vs. Nintendo Part VI, as what is better then playing with hairy monkeys?

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