List of Punch-Out!! characters
This is a list of characters appearing in the Punch-Out!! series.
- 1 Protagonists
- 2 Opponents introduced in Punch-Out!! (1984)
- 3 Opponents introduced in Super Punch-Out!! (1984)
- 4 Opponents introduced in Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! (1987)
- 5 Opponents introduced in Super Punch-Out!! (1994)
- 6 Opponents introduced in Punch-Out!! (2009)
- 7 Opponents' appearances
- 8 Cameo characters
- 9 Reception
- 10 References
Little Mac (リトル・マック Ritoru Makku?) is the main protagonist of the series. He is an Italian-American fighter who hails from the Bronx, New York. Like his name suggests, he is quite short, especially compared to his opponents, but makes up for it with his determination and skill. In the arcade versions of Punch-Out! and Super Punch-Out!, he didn't receive a name until Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!!. In the NES and Wii versions of Punch-Out!!, he is depicted as having short black hair with a black vest and green shorts. In the SNES version of Super Punch-Out!!, he has blond hair with blue shorts.
Jerome "Doc" Louis (ドック・ルイス?) is a former heavyweight boxing champion and Little Mac's trainer and coach, who stands at Mac's corner during fights. Between rounds, Doc provides Mac with advice, encouragement, or sometimes a humorous anecdote. He is the creator of the "Star Punch", the most powerful move in Mac's arsenal. He has a fondness for chocolate. In Punch-Out!! for Wii, he is voiced by Riley Inge.
Opponents introduced in Punch-Out!! (1984)
Bald Bull (ボールド・ブル Bōrudo Buru?) is a fictional character in the Punch-Out!! video game series created by Nintendo. Depicted as a bald Turkish boxer from Istanbul, he serves as a non-playable opponent who fights Little Mac. Bald Bull has made an appearance in nearly every Punch-Out!! title to date and is voiced by Erse Yagan. Bald Bull appeared in five different Punch-Out!! titles, first appearing in the original arcade release in 1984 and last appearing in Punch-Out!! for the Wii in 2009. Bald Bull has had several different designers over the years; his original design was created by Shigeru Miyamoto for the arcade game Punch-Out!!, while his later designs were created by Makoto Wada and Eddie Viser.
Bald Bull's signature move is his "Bull Charge", where he places himself just in front of the ropes at the back of the ring, poises, and takes three quick hops towards Little Mac, finishing with an uppercut powerful enough to knock Mac to the canvas, regardless of his health. In the Wii Punch-Out!!, this was modified slightly where Bald Bull scrapes his foot on the ground, and, snarling much like a bull, charges rapidly towards Mac to deliver a devastating uppercut. However, Bald Bull has his own weakness during this move: hitting him with a body blow just before he unleashes his uppercut (which occurs after three hops) will put him down instead.
Glass Joe (グラス・ジョー Gurasu Jō?) is a fictional boxer from Nintendo's Punch-Out!! video game series. He first appeared in the arcade game Punch-Out!! in 1984 and three years later in NES game of the same name. His most recent appearance was in the Wii installment of Punch-Out!!. He was originally designed by Shigeru Miyamoto and was revised by Makoto Wada for the NES game. He is voiced by Christian Bernard in the Wii game.
He is the player's first opponent in every game in which he appears, and is famous for his weakness and cowardice. These elements are considered by critics to be stereotypes of French people. These characteristics were emphasized by the developer of the Wii game which included cutscenes which depict Glass Joe in French settings. Glass Joe is considered one of the most well-known characters in the Punch-Out!! series and a Nintendo icon.
Kid Quick (キッド・クイック Kiddo Kuikku?) from Brooklyn, New York. His only appearance was in the arcade version of Punch-Out!!. He is the only boxer in the Punch-Out!! series to have no special attack; however, as his last name "Quick" tells it, he is very fast in both offense and defense. In 2009, a new Punch-Out!! character named Disco Kid appeared in Punch-Out!! Wii, with his fighting style being similar to Quick's. What is also interesting to note is that Disco Kid is referred to as "Kid Quick" in the game files, implying that Kid Quick was reworked into Disco Kid.
Mr. Sandman is a black boxer hailing from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in the United States. He was first created by Shigeru Miyamoto in the Punch-Out!! game for the arcades, and then by Makoto Wada in the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) Punch-Out!!. He appeared in Super Punch-Out!! as one of the three boxers returning from the NES Punch-Out!!. His most recent appearance was in the Wii Punch-Out!!, where he was drawn by Eddie Viser and voiced by Riley Inge. Whereas most characters in Punch-Out!! are noted for being ethnic or region stereotypes, Sandman is noted as having no major stereotypes.
Since appearing in Punch-Out for the arcades, Mr. Sandman has received generally positive reception. GamePro Germany commented that he appeared to be based on boxer Joe Frazier, who also comes from Philadelphia. GamesRadar editor Brett Elston felt that Mr. Sandman lacked ethnic stereotypes unlike the newer black Punch-Out!! character Disco Kid.
Piston Hurricane (ピストン・ハリケーン Pisuton Harikēn?) from Havana, Cuba, originally appeared as the second opponent in the first Punch-Out!! arcade, with an afro. His special move is the Hurricane Rush, wherein he jumps away from his opponent, taunts, then jumps toward his opponent punching rapidly. In the NES and Wii games, Piston Hurricane is replaced by the stoic Japanese boxer Piston Honda, (Piston Hondo in the Wii version) who fights in a similar manner. Piston Hurricane reappeared in the SNES version of Super Punch Out!, in a less taunting manner and a changed appearance, whereupon he has shaved off his afro into a buzz cut.
Pizza Pasta (ピッツァ・パスタ Pittsa Pasuta?) from Napoli, Italy. His only appearance is in the arcade version of Punch-Out!, in which he has the ability to grab the player character and drain the KO meter. His first and last names are references to Italian food. Piston Hondo/Honda and Aran Ryan are his replacements.
Opponents introduced in Super Punch-Out!! (1984)
Bear Hugger (ベア・ハッガー Bea Haggā?) first appeared in the arcade game Super Punch-Out!! in 1985. Bear Hugger is a Canadian boxer who hails from Salmon Arm, British Columbia, and is the national boxing champion of the country. He first appeared in Super Punch-Out!! for the arcades, and then again in Super Punch-Out!! for the Super NES. He most recently appeared in Punch-Out!! for the Wii, where he was designed by Eddie Viser and voiced by Richard Newman. Eurogamer described Bear Hugger's attack style as using "sheer force to send opponents to the mat." He is powerful, yet also fast. In their walkthrough, IGN noted that he was fast considering how large he was.
Bear Hugger has received mostly positive reception. He has been described as a favourite of the series by IGN editor Levi Buchanan, a statement that Official Nintendo Magazine editor Tom East echoed. In their list of the seven best second quests, GamePro listed the Title Defense mode of Punch-Out!! for the Wii, stating that losing to the "squirrel-assisted" Bear Hugger would demonstrate the difficulty and creative talent of the developer Next Level Games. The Escapist editor Greg Tito wrote that he giggled every time Bear Hugger called the player character Little Mac a "hoser." On the other hand, Allgame editor Skyler Miller opined that while Bear Hugger was humorous in Super Punch-Out!! for the SNES, he was not quite "out there" compared to boxers from Punch-Out!! for the NES.
Bear Hugger personifies several stereotypes of Canadian people, including being a lumberjack by trade and his love for maple syrup, ice hockey and the wilderness. He is bald, and has a thick, brown beard and mustache, as well as a tuft of chest hair. He also wears overalls. As seen in one of the cutscenes, Bear Hugger does boxing training with bears. He also uses a squirrel in his boxing. In discussing stereotyping in Punch-Out!!, GamesRadar editor Brett Elston stated that Bear Hugger embodied several stereotypical Canadian traits, including being husky, loving the outdoors, ice hockey, and drinking maple syrup. Canadian GamesRadar editor Tyler Wilde jokingly stated that the stereotypes were "absolute malarky," stating that they only consume maple syrup on special occasions, and even then, only from "goose-shaped goblets carved from pine wood." Editor Scott Jones commented that Bear Hugger's Canadian origins predisposed him to consume the "big jug of booze" with which he is portrayed; however, the jug actually (or at least ostensibly) contains maple syrup. (cf. the character shift in Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! from "Vodka Drunkenski" to "Soda Popinski"). IGN editor Craig Harris listed him as one of the game's "over-the-top" caricatures. Kotaku editor Michael McWhertor praised the stereotyping of characters in the series, stating that it was improved in the Wii Punch-Out!!, and stated that Bear Hugger was "extremely Canadian." The Globe and Mail editor Chad Sapieha, writing about the roster of fighters in Punch-Out!! that "would send chills down the spine of any potential pugilist," mentioned Bear Hugger as one of these boxers, calling him an "ostensibly Canadian".
In the version of Punch Out released on British home computers in the 1980s as "Frank Bruno's Boxing" Bear Hugger is renamed to be 'Canadian Crusher' with reference to his Bear Clap move.
Dragon Chan is a character in both the arcade and Super NES versions of Super Punch-Out!!. He is a martial artist from Hong Kong, and can deliver a flying kick that the player must duck in order to avoid being instantly knocked down. In the arcade version, he is the boxing champion of Hong Kong, while he appears as the second opponent of the Major Circuit in the SNES version.
In "Frank Bruno's Boxing", Dragon Chan is known as 'Fling Long Chop' and uses the side karate kick (not the rope bouncing one seen in the SNES incarnation) as his special attack.
Great Tiger (グレート・タイガー Gurēto Taigā?) is a 29-year-old Indian boxer hailing from Mumbai, India. He first appeared in Super Punch-Out!! for the arcades, and again in Punch-Out!! for the NES, where he was designed by Makoto Wada. He would not appear in a video game again until 22 years later in Punch-Out!! for the Wii, where he was designed by Eddie Viser and voiced by Sumit Seru. The NES and Wii games depict him as having mystical powers. In the first game, he can become intangible and spin around the ring at high speeds while punching Little Mac—the so-called "Magic Punch." However, if Little Mac succeeds in blocking this barrage, the spinning leaves Great Tiger dizzy, and he can be sent to the mat with one punch to the face. The Wii Punch-Out!! gives him the ability to fly on magic carpets and teleportation. He wears a turban on his head adorned with a jewel that indicates when he is going to attack. He also wears tiger-print pants. In the NES version, the skin of a Bengal tiger is seen hanging on the post in his corner of the ring. These have all been referred to as stereotypes of Indian people. While he spoke in English in the NES version, he speaks in Sanskrit with no subtitles in the Wii version.
Since appearing in Punch-Out!! for the NES, Great Tiger has received mostly positive reception. Both Official Nintendo Magazine and GameSpot described him as a favourite of the series. GamePro listed him as one of the characters they want to return in the Wii Punch-Out!!, stating that "may not be the most PC character from the original NES classic, but his crazy techniques will fit in well with the outlandish style Next Level Games has been known to apply."
Great Tiger has been described as a stereotype of Indian people. Freelance writer Sumantra Lahiri, in discussing the stereotypes of Punch-Out!!, stated that it gives players an "encyclopedic knowledge of ignorant American sentiments," mentioning the Indian stereotype that they skin tigers alive and wear turbans. In his article on the stereotypes of Punch-Out!!, GamesRadar editor Brett Elston stated that Great Tiger embodies several Indian stereotypes, including the ability to fly on magic carpets, living in Taj Mahal-like structures, and that they wear turbans that grant them magical powers. He described him as an "over-caffeinated Jafar", adding that he "plays up in the mystical side of Indian culture so much we’re surprised they didn’t work in a snake charmer joke in there somewhere." Editor Scott Jones stated that in 2009, "fighting a man from India who flies around on a magic carpet and who telegraphs his punches via a glowing jewel in his turban doesn't feel terribly dramatic." Bit Mob editor Brian Shirk commented that while Great Tiger looked more human than King Hippo, he still doesn't seem quite human judging by the animal sounds he makes and his teleportation abilities."
aka Andra Puncheredov in the British "Frank Bruno's Boxing" iteration
Super Macho Man (スーパー・マッチョマン Macchoman?) is an American boxer, hailing from Hollywood, California. He first appeared in Super Punch-Out!! for the arcades, and again in Punch-Out!! for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES), Super Punch-Out!! for the Super NES, and Punch-Out!! for the Wii. He was designed by Makoto Wada for the NES version, and by Eddie Viser for the Wii version. He was voiced by Mike Inglehart for the Wii version as well. An ESRB description of Punch-Out!! for the Wii mentioned a boxer who flexed his pectoral muscles, leading editor Stephen Totilo to question whether this was Super Macho Man or not. He is tanned and very muscular, often showing this off by flexing his pectoral muscles or his arms. He wears gold earrings, a gold necklace, sunglasses, and has a gold tooth. He also wears a speedo that says his name on them. He has gray hair, though his in-game sprite in the NES version of Punch-Out!! has his hair colored black, most likely due to palette limitations.
Since appearing in Super Punch-Out!! for the arcades, Super Macho Man has received generally positive reception. He is considered a memorable character. Super Macho Man was featured on the cover of Gamefan as part of the cover story on Super Punch-Out!! for the Super NES. GamesRadar editor Chris Antista listed it as one of the greatest video game covers, owing its quality to Super Macho Man's "iconic pose" featured on the cover. IGN editor Jesse Schedeen named Super Macho Man one of the series' top fighters, describing him as a "thinly veiled parody mash-up of "Superstar" Billy Graham and another famous fighter who goes by the nickname "Macho Man"."
In discussing stereotyping in the Punch-Out!! series, GamesRadar editor Brett Elston states that Super Macho Man embodies the stereotypes of American celebrities, namely that they are "overly tan, materialistic narcissists obsessed with fame, money and appearance." He added that Super Macho Man was not just a parody of celebrities, but "Hollywood and American's fascination with celebrities." He cites images depicting "money-grubbing models" surrounding him as he poses for pictures. He calls this a comment on "both on Americans’ personal priorities and how we constantly reward people who engage in this behavior." An IGN review for the video game Cho Aniki, a video game with several homosexual undertones, made reference to Super Macho Man to demonstrate these undertones, stating that players may have looked away from him "flexing his pecs."
Opponents introduced in Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! (1987)
Don Flamenco (ドン・フラメンコ Don Furamenko?) is a fictional Spanish boxer from Madrid in the Nintendo-produced Punch-Out!! series of video games. He first appeared in Punch-Out!! for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES), where he was designed by Makoto Wada. He appears twice in this game, with his first appearance cited as being a pushover. He made another appearance in Punch-Out!! for the Wii, where he was illustrated by Eddie Viser and voiced by Juan Amador Pulido. The Wii version expands upon his character by making him a matador; his hair is a toupee. This incarnation of him is described as being much more difficult than the NES incarnation, with Kotaku citing the guesswork involved in figuring out how to defeat him.
Don Flamenco made his first appearance in Punch-Out!! for the NES, where he was designed by Makoto Wada. At the beginning of the fight, he dances toward the middle of the ring to the March of the Toreadors from the opera Carmen. He relies mostly on his "Flamenco Punch," in which he briefly dances in place before swinging a right at Little Mac's jaw. However, if Little Mac dodges this punch, it severely disrupts his timing, leaving him vulnerable to a left-right flurry that can occasionally last long enough to knock him down. He is both cocky and effeminate, noted as a pushover in his initial fight but becomes more difficult in his second encounter. He did not make another appearance until Punch-Out!! for the Wii, where he was designed by Eddie Viser and voiced by Juan Amador Pulido. His voice speech is delivered in accurate Castilian Spanish. To date, he has only appeared in these two games. This incarnation shows him as a bullfighter, as well as revealing that he is balding and has a toupee; when knocked off, this sends him into a rage.
Since appearing in Punch-Out!! for the NES, Don Flamenco has received mostly positive reception. He was described by IGN editor Levi Buchanan to be one of the favourites of Punch-Out!!. GameSpy editor Ryan Scott suggested that Don Flamenco existed to "cut the players down to size" after easier opponents such as Glass Joe and Piston Hondo. In discussing the stereotypes of Punch-Out!!, GamesRadar editor Brett Elston stated that Don Flamenco was a stereotype of Spanish people, citing stereotypes utilized in the character such as being expert bullfighters, always having a rose in his hand, and an obsession with good looks, comparing Flamenco to Spanish fighting game character Vega from the Street Fighter series. Fellow GamesRadar editor Mikel Reparaz held a similar sentiment. The Escapist editor Sumantra Lahiri commented that while Don Flamenco was less pathetic than French Punch-Out!! boxer Glass Joe, he "radiates an effeminate "pretty boy" persona by making constant references to his perfect hair and starting off each fight with a feisty Latin dance." He adds that this is a stereotype of Spanish people by much of the world who view Spain's rich European culture as such. An IGN description for the video game Cho Aniki, a video game with several homosexual undertones, made reference to Don Flamenco's effeminacy. Eurogamer France considered Flamenco's "macho poses" as a "crude caricature."
Mike Tyson (マイク・タイソン Maiku Taison?) is the final opponent of the original release of Punch-Out!! for the NES, titled Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!!, whom Little Mac faces in a bout called "The Dream Fight". He is the undefeated, undisputed Heavyweight Champion of the World. During the first 90 seconds of the fight, all of Tyson's attacks can instantly knock the player down.
After Tyson's contract with Nintendo expired, he was replaced with a fictional character based on a then-Nintendo tournament champion, Mr. Dream (Mr. ドリーム?).
Opponents introduced in Super Punch-Out!! (1994)
Aran Ryan (アラン・ライアン Aran Raian?) is an Irish boxer, hailing from Dublin, Ireland. His first appearance was in Super Punch-Out!! for the Super NES, and most recently in the Wii video game Punch-Out!!. He was designed by Eddie Viser, and voiced by Stephen Webster in that game. While he was more sedate in Super Punch-Out!!, he was made out to be loud and boisterous, as well as a cheater; in one version, he is seen inserting a horse shoe into his glove, and in another, he uses a boxing glove tied to a rope as a weapon. While Next Level Games, the developers of the Wii Punch-Out!!, wanted to use mostly boxers from the original Punch-Out!!, they included Aran Ryan amongst others, with developer Bryce Holliday describing him as the game's "resident hooligan". In discussing Ryan's fighting style, GamePro editor Will Herring described it as being momentum-based.
Since appearing in Punch-Out!!, Aran Ryan has received mixed reception. In their review, GameTrailers bemoaned his inclusion over Super Punch-Out!! character Dragon Chan. In his review, editor Scott Jones criticized Ryan's inclusion in the Wii Punch-Out!!, calling him "one of the most banal characters in the game." He questioned why Nintendo included him and called him "forgettable." Complex ranked him as the sixth "douchiest" video game character." In their discussion of racial stereotypes in Punch-Out!!, GamesRadar editor Brett Elston commented that his uncontrollable rage, his disposition to cheating, his love for fighting, and his penchant for adorning his clothing with four leaf clovers was a strong stereotype of the Irish people. They added other qualities of Irish stereotypes, which includes red hair and excitability. GamesRadar editor Michael Grimm listed him as one of the six most offensive Irish stereotypes, echoing statements from the above article, while adding his being a boxer and his affinity for green as other stereotypes that he covers. However, he noted that he got off easy versus Glass Joe's French stereotypes. Eurogamer editor Oli Welsh cited Ryan as a "coarse caricature" of "ethnic and national stereotypes" and called him an "idiotically violent Irishman."
Bob Charlie (ボブ・チャーリー Bobu Chārī?) from Kingston, Jamaica. His only appearance is in the SNES version of Super Punch-Out!! as the first boxer in the Major Circuit. His look and name are references to the reggae legend Bob Marley. Before leaving Jamaica, Bob Charlie was crowned Jive King of Kingston.
Gabby Jay (ガビー・ジェイ Gabī Jei?) is the first boxer in Super Punch-Out!! for the Super NES. Bit Mob editor Andrew Fitch criticized Gabby Jay, calling him a "wannabe" of Glass Joe. Allgame editor Skyler Miller agreed with this sentiment, commenting that while humorous, he is not quite as "out there." In his article "One and Done: Nine Videogame Characters Who Were Never Heard From Again", editor John Teti listed Gabby Jay, stating that it was "not easy to replace a legend, but that was the bum hand dealt to Gabby Jay." He added that Gabby Jay not appearing in the Wii Punch-Out!! in favour of Glass Joe was something that Star Trek fans would deem "the Dr. Pulaski treatment." Gabby Jay's record is the same as Glass Joe's, with one victory and ninety-nine losses. According to the game's manual, Jay's one and only victory was against his boxing teacher - Glass Joe.
Heike Kagero (平家 陽炎 Heike Kagerō?) is A Japanese Kabuki from Osaka, Japan. His only appearance in the SNES version of Super Punch-Out!! as the second boxer in the World Circuit. He has a high damage Uppercut (similar to Don Flamenco).
Hoy Quarlow (回 鍋肉 Pinyin: Huí Guō Ròu?) is an elderly Chinese man from Beijing, China, apparently a parody of elderly Kung-Fu masters, who first appeared as the second opponent in the Special Circuit of Super Punch-Out. He carries a large cane which he uses to fight with, along with kicks and backhands, much like Dragon Chan before him. He is very fast, and is notorious amongst Super Punch-Out players as being very difficult to beat. His name means "twice-cooked pork," and is the name of a Szechuan dish.
Mad Clown (マッド・クラウン Maddo Kuraun?) is a traveling circus Clown from Milan, Italy who decided to take up boxing. He made his only appearance in the SNES version of Super Punch-Out!! as the third boxer in the World Circuit. According to the Manual, Mad Clown was originally an Italian Opera singer, but after having a nervous breakdown, later joined the Circus instead. After tiring of the same nightly performances Juggling and trying to drive a car that was too small for him, he decided to make his debut in the World Circuit. From his build, and special attack, he has many similarities to Bear Hugger.
Masked Muscle (マスクド・マッスル Masukudo Massuru?) is a masked Luchador from Mexico City, Mexico. Banned from Luchador Wrestling for illegal manoeuvers, Masked Muscle now boxes. He still however, is not afraid to use cheating manoeuvers against the player, including Headbutting and Spitting into the player's eyes to blind them. According to the instruction manual of Super Punch-Out!!, he holds the dubious titles of "The Amigo to Nobody" and the "Crown Prince of the Cheap Shot".
Narcis Prince (ナルシス・プリンス Narushisu Purinsu?) is a vain British Ivy Leaguer from London, England who originally appeared as the first opponent in Super Punch-Out's Special Circuit. He has very good defence and reasonably strong attacks when he is calm, but if he is hit in the face at all, he flies into a blind rage and attacks recklessly (But more powerfully in return), allowing the player to attack him more effectively. His name is a pun on the word Narcissist.
Nick Bruiser (ニック・ブルーザー Nikku Burūzā?) is the Champion of the Special Circuit in Super Punch-Out, and the final opponent in the game. The oldest of the Bruiser Brothers, he is a huge and emotionless opponent who has never lost a fight in his career. Ever since he beat his younger brother Rick in a match, he has vowed never to lose his title. Like Rick before him, he can also incapacitate your boxer's hands (Except Nick can do it twice in a row to leave the player completely unable to attack for a short time), but he is more powerful, and can also increase the power of his attacks for short periods of time, knock the player down in one hit with a "Dashing Forearm" attack, and has better defense, barely even flinching from standard punches. He could be considered a character similar to Ivan Drago from the Rocky movies.
Rick Bruiser (リック・ブルーザー Rikku Burūzā?) is the third opponent in the special circuit of Super Punch-Out. He is the younger, but no less monstrous brother of Nick Bruiser. They share similar records (42 Wins each), but Rick has only ever lost once at his brother's hand. He is capable of using his elbows to incapacitate your boxer's hands, and jumping up to stun the player before landing powerful uppercuts that always knock the player down in one hit, similarly to Bald Bull.
Opponents introduced in Punch-Out!! (2009)
Disco Kid (ディスコ・キッド Disuko Kiddo?) is an American boxer who was voiced by Donny Lucas. Disco Kid is one of only two new characters to appear in the Wii video game Punch-Out!!, which consists of mostly characters from Punch-Out!! for the Nintendo Entertainment System. He was one of the first characters revealed in the Wii Punch-Out!!. He is characterized as flamboyant with a high-pitched voice and an affinity for clubbing.
Disco Kid has received generally positive reception. Numerous critics felt that Disco Kid fit in well with the characters returning from previous games, including Craig Harris, Oli Welsh, Ricardo Madeira, and DJPubba. GameSpot's Tom Mc Shea felt that he lacked the charm of the returning characters but had a flashy style. The Escapist's John Funk felt that more could have been done to make him feel "disco", such as the addition of "sequins on his shorts." 1UP.com's David Ellis and an editor for ESPN.com compared Disco Kid to the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air character Carlton Banks; Ellis added that he was a "flamboyant dancer who uses awkward timing as a distraction" and a greater challenge than other early game characters due to his unique pattern. GamePro's Will Herring wrote that his design was "masterfully modeled and animated". GameDaily's Chris Buffa described him as a "dancing fool" and a humorous character with a distinctive personality.
Disco Kid has been described as flamboyant, and as a stereotype of black Americans by critics such as Kotaku's Michael McWhertor. An editor for GameTrailers suggested that Nintendo was aiming for a certain segment of people with Disco Kid. GamesRadar's Brett Elston described Disco Kid as a stereotype due to his appreciation of cars, bass, and clubbing. He felt that these stereotypes were comparatively mild compared to other Punch-Out!! characters, with the exception of Mr. Sandman. One of the members of Retronauts stated that Disco Kid was stereotype new to Punch-Out!!, and that it was "unnerving."
|Character||Punch-Out (1984)||Super Punch-Out (1984)||Punch-Out (1987)||Super Punch-Out (1994)||Punch-Out (2009)|
|Mike Tyson / Mr. Dream|
|Super Macho Man|
Punch-Out!! plays host to several cameo characters. Whereas the original Punch-Out!! shows several Nintendo characters in the audience, including Donkey Kong Jr. and Mario, Mario appears as a referee in the NES Punch-Out!!. In Punch-Out!! for the Wii, Donkey Kong appears as an opponent to protagonist Little Mac.
Topps and Nintendo of America made a series of trading cards featuring characters from the Mario, The Legend of Zelda, Double Dragon, and the NES Punch-Out!! series. The Punch-Out!! cards are of the various opponent boxers that Little Mac fights. The cards have scratch-off spots on them, which determine loss or win. One unique aspect to the cards that are featured in real boxing matches but not the games was the "cow blow", slang for a blow to the kidneys. As in boxing, a "cow blow" is highly illegal and would cause the scratch-off card to be an instant loss.
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