Dee Jay

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Dee Jay
Street Fighter character
Dee Jay in Super Street Fighter II, as drawn by Bengus
First appearanceSuper Street Fighter II (1993)
Designed byJames Goddard
Portrayed byMiguel A. Núñez Jr.
Voiced by
In-universe information
Fighting styleKickboxing

Dee Jay (Japanese: ディージェイ, Hepburn: Dī Jei) is a fictional character in the Street Fighter series. He made his first appearance in the 1993's Super Street Fighter II as one of the four new characters introduced in the game. In the series, he is a Jamaican kickboxer and karateka, as well as a recording artist and breakdancer. He was the only character at the time to be designed by an American. Dee Jay was based on real-life kickboxer Billy Blanks and has received mixed critical reception.


Dee Jay made his debut in Super Street Fighter II (1993) as one of the four new characters introduced in the game in addition to the original twelve character roster from previous Street Fighter II games. He enters the World Warrior tournament, seeking inspiration to develop a new musical sound. Dee Jay reappears as a playable character in the console versions of Street Fighter Alpha 3 (1998) and in the console version of Street Fighter: The Movie. The game is set before the World Warrior tournament and depicts Dee Jay before he began his professional music career. While he was not included in Street Fighter IV, development of his character for its sequel, Super Street Fighter IV, had commenced during the former game's development.[1] Audio files of the announcer from Street Fighter IV announcing Dee Jay were found amongst the game's audio files.[2] He was revealed along with T. Hawk, who also originated from Super Street Fighter II, and Juri, a character created for Street Fighter IV. In Super Street Fighter II, Dee Jay has a manager named Rick, while in Street Fighter Alpha 3 he has an agent named Bob.[3]

One of the trailers of Street Fighter X Tekken showed parts of Dee Jay that resembles him. However he did not make it to the final roster. Instead, his appearance served as a swap costume for Hwoarang.

In other media[edit]

Dee Jay plays a minor role in Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie. Here, he beats up a few punks causing trouble at a nightclub before being warned by Guile and Chun-Li that he is being monitored by Shadaloo, which he does not believe until Chun-Li destroys one of their cyborgs in front of him. He was voiced by Ginzo Matsuo in Japanese and Beau Billingslea (credited as John Hammond) in English.

In the 1994 live-action film version of Street Fighter, Dee Jay was portrayed by Miguel A. Núñez, Jr. as one of the primary antagonists. He is depicted as a greedy hacker and engineer working for General M. Bison. In the film's climax, Dee Jay flees from Bison's base with a trunk of Bison's money instead of staying to fight, only to find it full of useless "Bison Dollars" that Bison had planned to issue as currency once he took over the world. He is also seen telling Zangief that Bison is the true enemy and had been using them both since his rise to crime power (though he had paid Dee Jay well while paying Zangief nothing). This version of Dee Jay appears in the console version of the Street Fighter: The Movie video game, and serves as the second of the four Grand Masters in the Street Battle mode (along with Zangief, Sagat and Bison).

UDON's line of Street Fighter comics gives Dee Jay a minor role as a brainwashed agent of Shadaloo who breaks into MI5's Delta Red headquarters (along with other Doll agents) and frees a captured Doll agent from their custody. He is captured during the raid and his mind is restored with the help of Delta Red.

Character design[edit]

A sketch of Dee Jay drawn by James Goddard

Dee Jay was conceived for Super Street Fighter II by American designer James Goddard, and his name was chosen as a variant on Goddard's nickname, DJames.[4][5] He was the first Street Fighter character to be designed by an American,[6] and only one of only three characters in the series to have been conceived by an American, along with Blade and Captain Sawada. While Super Street Fighter II was going to feature Cammy, T. Hawk, and two brothers who had the same design save for a head swap,[7] Goddard felt that it would be redundant to have another pair of characters with the same fighting style. As a result, Capcom added Dee Jay in place of one of the brothers, while the other evolved into Fei Long.[8]

The character concept came from interpreting kickboxer Billy Blanks from his role in The King of the Kickboxers, but with a more cheerful disposition.[4] Goddard suggested Blanks as an inspiration when the Japanese team asked for more design ideas. Goddard commented that "a really kick-ass black character would be awesome, instead of someone who was more negative, which is what you tended to see from the Japanese back in those days." In spite of the fact that Blanks is a bad guy in the film which he saw him in, The King of the Kickboxers, he states "his build and look, I just thought that it would make a great character --high-flying, crazy kicks... I mean, you have to remember, this was Billy Blanks pre-'Tae Bo.' He was so bad-ass."[9]

Goddard began designing Dee Jay by drawing a sketch of him and sending it to the Japanese team.[8] He sent the film The King of the Kickboxers by copying a VHS tape and sending it through FedEx. He designed him as a "positive, fun character," implementing elements such as him being Jamaican, a "fun-loving guy," and a person who is trying to "jump-start his music career while kicking a lot of ass."[9] While the design on his pants originally said "MANTIS," but was changed to say "MAXIMUM."[9] This was because his sprite facing left was a mirror image of his sprite facing right, and the N and S in "MANTIS" would be reversed on the left sprite.[10] According to Goddard, "we decided that Mantis wasn't going to work down the side of his pants, so we opted for Maximum."[9] Soon after, Dee Jay was adapted into the 1994 Street Fighter film, played by Miguel A. Núñez Jr. with his musical background replaced by computer skills.[11] As one of the only characters to be created by an American designer, Street Fighter co-creator Akira Nishitani commented that he only learned the story behind the character's creation decades after.[4]


Dee Jay has received a generally positive reception for his many appearances in the Street Fighter series. Rocky Mountain News described Dee Jay as "a flashy rapper-type, and probably the best of the new four" characters introduced in Super Street Fighter II.[12] Total Magazine also praised his character design, and highlighted him as the "personal favorite of the Total team".[13] GameDaily listed him at number seventeen on their "Top 20 Street Fighter Characters of All Time" article, noting the strength of his fighting style in game.[14] Games World praised the 1994 Street Fighter film for casting Miguel A. Núñez Jr. as Dee Jay, rating his role as a 9 out of 10.[11] However, IGN editor Jesse Schedeen criticized his inclusion in the film, stating that he "seemed included merely for comic relief."[15] In discussing the final character reveals of Street Fighter IV, Crave Online commented that they would have preferred Dee Jay.[16] Allgame editor Matthew House described Dee Jay as "widely missed."[17] Professional Street Fighter player Justin Wong said that Dee Jay impressed him "as a character more than Juri because they actually gave him a lot of tools in this game to make him really good." He commented that while he did not like him in Super Street Fighter II, he liked him in Super Street Fighter IV "because the style he had in the other game was as a Street Fighter IV character."[18] Fellow professional Street Fighter player Keith Stuart listed him as his second favourite Street Fighter character and praised his Super Street Fighter II Turbo incarnation, while also praising him for being "a really positive, happy character."[19] IGN UK editor Martin Robinson, in discussing the Dee Jay, T. Hawk, and Juri, stated that "all three of which we've played and all three of which we're already in love with."[20] However, criticized Dee Jay's role in Super Street Fighter II, calling him a "loser" and commenting that Capcom had overestimated demand for such a game."[21] In discussing Super Street Fighter II, Giant Bomb editor Jeff Gerstmann commented that "I did my best to basically pretend he didn't exist," stating that the "real stars" of the game were Fei-Long and Cammy.[22]

Dee Jay has been examined as a representation of black characters in games. Kishonna Gray writes about Dee Jay in the book Race, Gender, and Deviance in Xbox Live, suggesting that Dee Jay is depicted as a "monstrous other" by his character design, as opposed to the more heroic features of the Japanese and American characters.[23] Eurogamer notes that Dee Jay was one of only three black video game characters in the early 1990s, saying "the representation of black characters in the '90s seemed to get worse, with odd creative choices by developers and straight up laughable attempts at diversity, including a personal favourite, Dee Jay."[24] Journalist and game critic Evan Narcisse notes Dee Jay as one of the few black characters in games from this period, as part of "a whole parade of hot-tempered brawn-centric bruisers and slangtastic slicksters have appeared in fighting game series ... all clearly meant to convey a ‘hip’ urban lifestyle in the broadest of strokes."[25][26] Bitmob editor Brian Shirk mentions Dee Jay among Street Fighter's "most offensive stereotypes" reserved for poorer nations that had been colonized, commenting that his appearance "brings to mind the word "savage" that was typical of depictions of black people in early film.[27]


  1. ^ "Super Street Fighter IV Q&A - Xbox 360 Previews at GameSpot". 27 April 2010. Archived from the original on 23 January 2013. Retrieved 3 September 2010.
  2. ^ "Dee Jay And T. Hawk Coming To Street Fighter IV?".
  3. ^ Street Fighter Alpha 3 game end sequence, Capcom, 1998.
  4. ^ a b c Henderstot, Steve; Lapetino, Tim (15 November 2017). Undisputed Street Fighter: The Art And Innovation Behind The Game-Changing Series. Dynamite Entertainment. ISBN 978-1-5241-0469-6.
  5. ^ Boyer, Crispin (February 1998). "EGM Takes a Time-Tripping Look at the Evolution of Arcades". Electronic Gaming Monthly. No. 103. Ziff Davis. p. 91.
  6. ^ La Historia De Street Fighter II. Retro Gamer Spain. 2013. pp. 8–17.
  7. ^ Studio Bent Stuff. All About Capcom Head-to-Head Fighting Games (in Japanese). p. 275.
  8. ^ a b "The origin of Dee Jay, straight from creator James Goddard".
  9. ^ a b c d "Fighting Spirits: The Men Behind the Combos - Page 1". GameSpy. Retrieved 3 September 2010.
  10. ^ "10 Things You Didn't Know About Street Fighter II – OC Weekly". Retrieved 10 January 2021.
  11. ^ a b Street Fighter: The Movie. Games World Issue 10. 1995. pp. 38–43.
  12. ^ Williamson, Matt (29 October 1993). "STREET FIGHTERS DOWN FOR THE COUNT", Rocky Mountain News. Retrieved on 18 December 2008
  13. ^ Super Street Fighter II. Total. 1 July 1994. pp. 16–19.
  14. ^ Top 20 Street Fighter Characters of All Time. GameDaily. Retrieved on 12 November 2008.
  15. ^ Schedeen, Jesse (7 July 2010). "Videogame Heroes Report Card - Stars Feature at IGN". Retrieved 3 September 2010.
  16. ^ Maddox, Dante. "Final Five Street Fighter IV Characters Revealed!". Archived from the original on 28 July 2012. Retrieved 3 September 2010.
  17. ^ House, Matthew (5 May 1999). "Street Fighter Alpha 3 - Review". allgame. Retrieved 3 September 2010.
  18. ^ Thomsen, Michael (23 October 2009). "Super Street Fighter IV In-Depth - PlayStation 3 Preview at IGN". Retrieved 3 September 2010.
  19. ^ Stuart, Keith (30 April 2010). "Ryan Hart's Top 20 Street Fighter characters - Part 2 | Technology |". Guardian. Retrieved 3 September 2010.
  20. ^ Robinson, Martin (25 November 2009). "Five Fighters We Want in Super Street Fighter IV - PlayStation 3 Feature at IGN". Retrieved 3 September 2010.
  21. ^ "The Essential 50 Part 32: Street Fighter II from". Archived from the original on 16 January 2010. Retrieved 3 September 2010.
  22. ^ "Super Street Fighter IV Hands-On". Giant Bomb. 16 November 2009. Retrieved 28 August 2012.
  23. ^ Gray, Kishonna L. (21 March 2014). Race, Gender, and Deviance in Xbox Live: Theoretical Perspectives from the Virtual Margins. Routledge. ISBN 978-0-323-29625-0.
  24. ^ Mellor, Calypso (28 June 2019). "Apex Legends' diverse cast is great for the present, but E3 left me excited for the future". Eurogamer. Retrieved 3 January 2021.
  25. ^ Narcisse, Evan (20 October 2015). Goldberg, Daniel (ed.). The Natural. The State of Play: Creators and Critics on Video Game Culture. Seven Stories Press. ISBN 978-1-60980-640-8.
  26. ^ Narcisse, Evan (13 February 2017). "The Natural: The Trouble Portraying Blackness in Video Games". Kotaku. Retrieved 3 January 2021.
  27. ^ Hoadley, Chris. "Racial Stereotypes in Video Games: How Do We Change Them?". Archived from the original on 25 November 2010. Retrieved 3 September 2010.

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