|Created by||Christy Hui|
|Developed by||Brandon Sawyer|
|Directed by||Mike Milo|
|Theme music composer||Chris Vrenna|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||3|
|No. of episodes||52 (list of episodes)|
|Executive producer(s)||Bill Motz (season 1)|
Bob Roth (season 1)
David Silverman (season 2)
Stephen Sustarsic (seasons 2–3)
Eric Radomski (supervising producer)
Michelle Pniewski (associate producer)
|Running time||22 minutes|
|Production company(s)||Warner Bros. Animation|
|Distributor||Warner Bros. Television Distribution|
|Original network||Kids' WB|
|Original release||November 1, 2003– May 13, 2006|
|Followed by||Xiaolin Chronicles|
Xiaolin Showdown is an American animated television series that aired on Kids' WB and was created by Christy Hui. Set in a world where martial arts battles and Eastern magic are commonplace, the series follows four young Xiaolin warriors in training who battle the Heylin forces of evil. They do this by protecting Shen Gong Wu (ancient artifacts that have great magical powers) from villains that would use them to conquer the world. Typical episodes revolve around a specific Shen Gong Wu being revealed which results in both sides racing to find it. Episodes usually reach a head when one good and one evil character must challenge each other to a magical duel called a Xiaolin Showdown for possession of the artifact.
A follow-up series, Xiaolin Chronicles, previewed on August 26, 2013 on Disney XD. It began its long-term run on September 14 the same year, but ran for only one season and 26 episodes, later ending on Netflix in July 1, 2015 in the U.S.
- 1 Production
- 2 Plot
- 3 Characters
- 4 Mystical elements
- 5 Episodes
- 6 Awards and nominations
- 7 Critical reception
- 8 In other media
- 9 Sequel series
- 10 See also
- 11 References
- 12 External links
Xiaolin Showdown was created by Christy Hui and co-produced by executive producer Sander Schwartz, supervising producer Eric Radomski and producers Bill Motz and Bob Roth and composed by Kevin Manthei was developed by Warner Bros. Animation. The first episode of Xiaolin Showdown was developed over three years following its conception, and premiered November 1, 2003.
Series creator Christy Hui has stated that despite the growing popularity of anime in the United States, she preferred to create a show that was a "fusion of Eastern and Western culture". Xiaolin Showdown shows subtle influences of Eastern art, action, and philosophy, but also includes very Western characters and humor.
Following the success of its first season, a second twenty-six episode season was ordered, and a third after that, resulting in 3 seasons and 51 episodes. The show has ended and despite heavy promotion in other media, including Postopia, a trading card game, and a video game, Warner Bros. have not shown any signs of releasing the second and third seasons on DVD.
The series was followed by Xiaolin Chronicles, which premiered on August 26, 2013. Actress Tara Strong strongly hinted via Twitter that episodes were being produced, which was confirmed by fellow series star Grey DeLisle when she appeared on the March 9, 2012 episode of actor Rob Paulsen's podcast, and by series creator Christy Hui in her Facebook account.
Four young monks – Omi, Kimiko, Raimundo, and Clay – are forced into cooperation at the Xiaolin Temple after learning they are chosen to become Xiaolin Dragons. They become friends and work together traveling the world in search for Shen Gong Wu, mystical objects with powers that balance the forces of good and evil. Along the way, they must battle wannabe evil boy genius Jack Spicer, and the evil Heylin sorceress Wuya, whom Jack inadvertently frees from a 1500-year imprisonment in a puzzle box by Grand Master Dashi. Through thievery, Spicer ultimately possesses enough Shen Gong Wu to form Mala Mala Jong, an ancient monster that Wuya uses to help her gain control of the world. Raimundo defies orders and fights the monster, causing the remaining monks to fight and defend the remaining Shen Gong Wu in the Temple's possession. All the monks, except for Raimundo because of his reckless disobedience, are promoted to Xiaolin Apprentices due to their bravery. Angered, Raimundo joins the Heylin side and helps Wuya regain her human form.
Omi travels back in time and receives a second puzzle box from Grand Master Dashi, who trapped Wuya in the puzzle box 1500 years ago. But with no way back to the future, he freezes himself using the Orb of Tornami. In the present time, Omi breaks free of the ice with the puzzle box in hand. Raimundo decides that his rightful place belongs in the Xiaolin Temple with his friends and traps Wuya in the new puzzle box. After returning to the Temple, the monks continue their search for the Shen Gong Wu. Eventually, Master Fung promotes Raimundo to Xiaolin Apprentice.
Afterwards, the monks are introduced to Xiaolin monk-turned-evil villain Chase Young. Chase takes an interest in Omi and becomes determined to manipulate his mind into joining the Heylin side. When Master Fung becomes trapped in the Ying-Yang World, Omi asks for help from Chase. He succeeds in rescuing Master Fung; however, upon leaving the Ying-Yang world, his bad chi takes over and he joins the Heylin side. Chase succeeds in restoring Wuya to her human form, though he takes her powers. The remaining monks soon learn that Chase had sent Master Fung into the Ying-Yang World knowing the events that would unfold afterwards, including Omi joining his side.
Kimiko, Clay, and Raimundo travel to the Ying-Yang World to retrieve Omi's good chi and return him to the Xiaolin side. After gaining Omi back, the monks are promoted to Wudai Warriors. They are then introduced to Hannibal Bean, an evil villain from the Ying-Yang World who is responsible for turning Chase Young to the Heylin side.
Toward the end of their journey, Master Fung tells the monks that they have one final quest before the team's leader, the Shoku Warrior, will be revealed. Omi decides that he will stop Hannibal Bean from turning Chase to the Heylin side. He ends up freezing himself in order to travel to the future to find the Sands of Time. Through time travel, he succeeds by switching the Lao-Mang-Long Soup with pea soup. However, when he returns to his present time, he learns that his actions have made things worse: instead of Chase joining the Heylin side, it is Chase's former friend, Master Monk Guan, whom Hannibal Bean turns evil. The monks and Chase are captured by Hannibal Bean, Wuya, and the evil Guan; Chase sacrifices his good self to save the monks and give them the opportunity to fight and return everything to the way it was. The monks succeed, and the timeline is fixed.
In the end, Raimundo is revealed as the Shoku Warrior. The series concludes with every villain attacking the temple, and the Wudai Warriors led by Raimundo proceeding to counterattack.
Xiaolin Showdown features a large cast, many of whom only appear in one episode and occasionally return for cameos or for single episodes later in the series. While supporting characters are often one dimensional and serve an immediate purpose in the episode in which they appear, main characters are often well developed with strengths and flaws that become present as the series progresses.
- Omi (voiced by Tara Strong) – The Xiaolin Dragon of Water, Omi is the main protagonist of the series and was the first dragon-in-training to train with Master Fung. At times Omi can be selfish and boastful, and often learns lessons of humility. Having been raised in the monastery, he is naïve about the outside world. As a running gag, Omi routinely confuses idiomatic phrases, from simple changes to lacking any resemblance to the original phrase whatsoever. Omi's signature moves are Tsunami Strike-Water, Tornado Strike-Water, and Wudai-Neptune Water. His Wudai Weapon is the Shimo Staff, and his elemental Shen Gong Wu is the Kaijin Charm. His preferred Shen Gong Wu is the Orb of Tornami (referred to as orb of torpedo in Chronicles) as it is a water Shen Gong Wu.
- Kimiko Tohomiko (voiced by Grey DeLisle) – The Xiaolin Dragon of Fire, Kimiko Tohomiko is the only female member of the team. Kimiko is the most tech-savvy member of the team and comes from Japan. Kimiko also changes hairstyles and outfits almost every episode. Kimiko's signature moves are Judolette Flip-Fire and Wudai-Mars Fire. Her preferred Shen Gong Wu is the Star Hanabi, her Wudai Weapon is the Arrow Sparrow, and her elemental Shen Gong Wu is the Cat's Eye Draco. She has the shortest temper, generally at even the slightest provocation. She can however be extremely focused and ignore outer, annoying, distractions. This is evidenced when she wields the Tangle Web Comb, said by Master Fung to require high levels of concentration.
- Raimundo Pedrosa (voiced by Tom Kenny) – The Xiaolin Dragon of Wind, Raimundo is stubborn and self-centered, but also does anything to protect his friends. Raimundo is street-smart and the group's self-proclaimed rebel, and he comes from Brazil, from the city of Rio de Janeiro. He joins the Heylin side twice in the series (once out of envy of the success of his friends, and a second time as a ploy to take Shen Gong Wu and the Treasure of the Blind Swordsman from Hannibal Roy Bean). Raimundo's signature moves are Typhoon Boom-Wind and Wudai-Star Wind. His preferred Shen Gong Wu is the Sword of the Storm. His Wudai Weapon is the Blade of the Nebula, and his elemental Shen Gong Wu is the Crest of the Condor. He is named Shoku Warrior in the final episode.
- Clay Bailey (voiced by Jeff Bennett) – The Xiaolin Dragon of Earth, Clay is the team muscle and a homegrown Texas cowboy. Clay sometimes speaks in "cowboy slang", and uses metaphors. Because of his good gentleman manners, he never fights girls. He also has a bad case of stage fright. His large size and sensible demeanor belittles his good-humored and gentle nature. The only time he gets really mad is if someone takes or destroys his beloved cowboy hat. Clay has a sister named Jessie who is an outlaw and leader of the Black Vipers. Clay's signature moves are Seismic Kick-Earth and Wudai-Crater Earth. His preferred Shen Gong Wu are the Fist of Tebigong and the Third-Arm Sash. His Wudai Weapon is the Big Bang Meteorang, and his elemental Shen Gong Wu is the Longhorn Taurus.
- Dojo Kanojo Cho (voiced by Wayne Knight) – A shapeshifting Chinese dragon. The Xiaolin warriors' main mode of transportation and wise-cracking advisor, Dojo can sense Shen Gong Wu. He has no hind legs and is normally about 1.5 feet long, but when the situation requires it, he can shift into a full-sized 40-foot dragon. He has served Grand Master Dashi. Dojo is often seen around Clay in the show; hanging around his arm, sitting on his shoulder or inside his cowboy hat. When Dojo is out of commission, the Xiaolin Warriors use an aircraft Shen Gong Wu called the Silver Manta Ray, or the other transport Shen Gong Wu such as the Crouching Cougar, the Shen-Ga-Roo, or the Tunnel Armadillo.
- Jack Spicer (voiced by Danny Cooksey) – The Xiaolin Warriors' first nemesis. Jack Spicer is notable for his robotic engineering, long rants, overuse of the word "evil" and his repetitive self-proclamation of "evil boy genius". He is responsible for releasing Wuya from the puzzle box that Grand Master Dashi locked her in, and aids her in finding Shen Gong Wu to conquer the world. Jack has aided the Xiaolin Warriors on occasion, and does show occasional leanings toward good. However, he always winds up back on the evil side. As a reflection of his character, his preferred Shen Gong Wu is the Monkey Staff, which was the only Shen Gong Wu he is left with at the end of the series.
- Wuya (voiced by Susan Silo) – A 1500-year-old Heylin witch who serves as the principal antagonist to the Xiaolin. After being imprisoned in a puzzle box by Grand Master Dashi for 1,500 years, Wuya's physical form was destroyed. Her goal is to use the Shen Gong Wu to regain a tangible body along with her magical powers, which happens at the end of season one with the help of Raimundo, the Serpent's Tail and the Reversing Mirror. She, like Dojo, has the ability to sense a Shen Gong Wu's appearance, but does not need the Scroll of the Shen Gong Wu to determine what it does. At one point she leaves Jack to take on Raimundo as partner, but after much debate he returns to the path of good.
- Chase Young (voiced by Jason Marsden) – A villain introduced in the second season as an even bigger evil threat than Jack. He himself was turned to the Heylin side when Hannibal Bean convinced him to drink the Lao Mang Long Soup in return for remaining forever young. Chase Young controls an army of therianthropic warriors, trapped in the form of jungle cats, and has the ability to turn into a reptilian creature. Chase rarely uses Shen Gong Wu in battle since he claims it distracts him from honing his martial arts skills. During the second season of the show, Chase plots to turn Omi to the Heylin side as part of a plot to rule the world. He succeeds, but later releases Omi as a matter of honor.
- Master Fung (voiced by René Auberjonois in season 1 and Maurice LaMarche in seasons 2-3) The Xiaolin Warrior's Master, trainer, and guide, Master Fung is mortified by his charges' behavior at times. He also is nearly always calm, despite the Warriors' behavior and mistakes.
- Master Monk Guan (voiced by Jeff Bennett) – A legendary Tai chi master who has traveled the world a dozen times, and has defeated many opponents using only his famous Spear of Guan which was later given to Omi but gives his favorite copy of the Spear of Guan to Raimundo. He makes his first appearance in the series by trading Dojo to Chase Young, who intended to use him in his Lou Mang Long soup, to get his Spear of Guan back. He also aids the young monks in combat training. He has his own temple on a cliffside near the ocean, where the young monks stay and store Shen Gong Wu while he trains them.
- Grandmaster Dashi (voiced by Tom Kenny) – The grandmaster Xiaolin monk, who imprisoned Wuya in a puzzle box 1500 years ago. He appeared along Dojo when Omi traveled to the past, seeking a second puzzle box. He was friends with Master Monk Guan and Chase Young, and met Omi when he assisted the three in the battle against Wuya.
- Hannibal Roy Bean (voiced by Tom Kenny) – Hannibal is a small, bean-shaped demon who spends his time plotting evil and world domination. He is first shown imprisoned in the Ying-Yang world by Chase Young, but tricks the Xiaolin warriors into releasing him. His "primary" Shen Gong Wu is the Moby Morpher, which he uses to shape-shift into other forms and change size, and travels on his bird, Ying-Ying.
Shen Gong Wu
The focus of the series is on collecting the fictional Shen Gong Wu, mystical artifacts that have magical powers, activated by saying the artifact's name aloud. Wuya's release caused Shen Gong Wu to reveal themselves. They are primarily used in Xiaolin Showdowns. The first Xiaolin Showdown was between Grand Master Dashi and Wuya. It was a great battle, in which Dashi used the Shen Gong Wu against Wuya's Heylin magic. Eventually, Grand Master Dashi was the victor, and Wuya was trapped within a mystical puzzle box. Determined to ensure that Wuya would not be able to get her hands on the Shen Gong Wu and rule the world with them, Grand Master Dashi and the dragon Dojo hid them all over the world. Dashi then created the Xiaolin Temple and began a lineage of Xiaolin Warriors to prevent the Shen Gong Wu from falling into the wrong hands. Should Wuya ever be freed, the Xiaolin Warriors would rise up and fight the forces of the Heylin.
A Shen Gong Wu can only be located when it chooses to reveal itself, at that point both Wuya and Dojo can sense its activation and can find its general location. Wuya can tell what Shen Gong Wu has revealed itself, while the Xiaolin must defer to the Ancient Scroll of the Shen Gong Wu to find out which one has been revealed. Chase Young is also capable of anticipating when a new Shen Gong Wu is revealed.
There are two occasions during which astronomical events affect the Shen Gong Wu. When the planets align themselves, the Shen Gong Wu gather to form Mala Mala Jong. When the rare Heylin Comet flies over Earth, the Shen Gong Wu come alive and take over their user. Raimundo was subject to the Heylin Comet's magic in the episode "The Last Temptation of Raimundo", and he was taken over by the Golden Tiger Claws, Third Arm Sash, Helmet of Jong and many other Shen Gong Wu. He was turned into a giant freakish brute until the comet had passed, and it was safe to take the Shen Gong Wu off.
In Xiaolin Chronicles, many Shen Gong Wu are redesigned and even renamed, such as the Orb of Tornami, Sword of the Storm, Fist of Tebigong, and Monkey Staff.
In Xiaolin Showdown, when more than one person grabs a Shen Gong Wu at the same time, a Xiaolin Showdown occurs. In this namesake competition, each side wagers a Shen Gong Wu he/she already owns. In some cases, the competitors invoke a Shen Yi Bu Dare, where multiple (usually two) Shen Gong Wu are wagered. The winner obtains all the Shen Gong Wu fought for, totaling five Shen Gong Wu. In some cases, when more than two people touch a Shen Gong Wu at once, a different kind of Xiaolin Showdown occurs: the Showdown Trio is a two-on-one or three-person free-for-all, a Xiaolin Showdown Tsunami is either a two-on-two or a four-person free-for-all Showdown, and an Eight-Way Xiaolin Showdown is a four-on-four Showdown. One can also call for a Cosmic Clash Showdown, allowing the caller to bring more people into the Showdown, who did not touch the Shen Gong Wu (however, in this type of showdown, one of the competitors must be over one-half Shen Gong Wu and look kind of freakish). Generally, the competitors in a Xiaolin Showdown of any type use the Shen Gong Wu that they wagered to compete with. However, there have been instances where a Shen Gong Wu not wagered was used in the Xiaolin Showdown, as in "The Last Temptation of Raimundo" when Wuya used the Shroud of Shadows against the Xiaolin Warriors while she was possessing Raimundo. Another showdown was in "Enter The Dragon" when Omi uses the Reversing Mirror and Shroud of Shadows on Dojo.
The challenge in a Xiaolin Showdown can be anything, but most commonly is some sort of race to the Shen Gong Wu. When the Showdown is called, the world warps around the competitors and by-standers, and the terrain they are on becomes an extreme extent, such as a mountainside becoming a field of rock pillars, or a snowfield becoming a large snowboarding course. Some Showdowns have also affected those involved, such as gaining weight for a sumo wrestling showdown. Other contests have been games of tag, basketball, or combat. The challenge officially begins after the change, and when both (or all) combatants yell "Gong Yi Tanpai!" Then the decided contest starts. When one is victorious, the terrain returns to normal, and the winner gains possession of all the wagered Shen Gong Wu.
"Gong Yi Tanpai!" is a pseudo-Chinese way of saying, "Ready, Set, Go!".
Omi inadvertently gave the competition its name when he traveled back in time in episode "Days Past" to ask Grand Master Dashi to make another puzzle box to imprison Wuya.
Awards and nominations
Daytime Emmy Awards
|2004||Outstanding Sound Editing — Live Action and Animation||1st (Episodes 1–6)||Nominated|
|2005||Outstanding Sound Editing — Live Action and Animation||1st (Ep. 7–13) & 2nd (Ep. 1–11)||Won|
|2006||Outstanding Sound Editing — Live Action and Animation||2nd (Ep. 12–26) & 3rd (Ep. 1–8)||Nominated|
|2007||Outstanding Sound Editing — Live Action and Animation||3rd (Episodes 9–13)||Nominated|
|2004||Outstanding Character Design in an Animated Television Production||1st (Episodes 1–6)||Nominated|
Xiaolin Showdown was also nominated for two Golden Reel Awards.
Xiaolin Showdown was a huge hit for the Kids WB network and it ranked at the no.1 position against all other Saturday morning competition mainly between kids aged 6–14.
In other media
A Season One DVD has been released. It is a 2-disc set, and has special features on disc 2, but the only features are trailers for other shows and movies. On January 10, 2017, Amazon acquired the rights to produce Season 2 on DVD, but will only print copies on demand, taking several days extra. On April 11, 2017, the 3rd and final season was released as a Manufacture on demand release. All seasons and Xiaolin Chronicles are available on Amazon Instant Video and iTunes in HD.
On September 14, 2013, a continuation of the series, Xiaolin Chronicles premiered. The series was standalone that is not canon to Showdown. Chronicles features a new ally of the main characters named Ping Pong as they continue their fight against Wuya, Jack Spicer and Chase Young.
- Hui, Christy. "Xiaolin Chronicles Makes US Debut Tonight!". MailChimp. Retrieved 30 August 2013.
- "Xiaolin Showdown". www.scannews.com. Retrieved 2007-03-01.
- Danny Stricker. "Meet Christy Hui, Animator". www.timeforkids.com. Archived from the original on December 1, 2008. Retrieved 2007-03-01.
- Nancy Lees. "Hot Talent: Hui specializes in cultural doubleheaders". www.kidscreen.com. Retrieved 2007-03-01.
- Tara Strong. "Tara Strong on Twitter". Retrieved 2012-02-10.
- Rob Paulsen. "Talkin' Toons with Rob Paulsen, Episode 31". Archived from the original on 2012-05-02. Retrieved 2012-03-15.
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- Madellaine Paxson (writer) & Dan Riba (director) (May 8, 2004). "Mala Mala Jong". Xiaolin Showdown. Season 1. Episode 12. Kids' WB!.
- Bob Roth, Bill Motz (writers) & Steven Lyons (director) (May 15, 2004). "In the Flesh". Xiaolin Showdown. Season 1. Episode 13. Kids' WB!.
- Madellaine Paxson (writer) & Steven Lyons (director) (November 15, 2003). "Tangled Web". Xiaolin Showdown. Season 1. Episode 3. Kids' WB!.
- Amy Wolfram (writer) & Steven Lyons (director) (November 22, 2003). "Katnappe!". Xiaolin Showdown. Season 1. Episode 4. Kids' WB!.
- Bob Roth, Bill Motz (writers) & Matt Danner (director) (September 11, 2004). "Days Past". Xiaolin Showdown. Season 2. Episode 1. Kids' WB!.
- Bob Roth, Bill Motz (writers) & Steven Lyons (director) (February 21, 2004). "The Journey of a Thousand Miles". Xiaolin Showdown. Season 1. Episode 1. Kids' WB!.
- Ryan Ball (2003-11-14). "Xiaolin Showdown Gives Kids' WB Ratings Kick". Animation Magazine. Retrieved 2009-12-20.
- "Xiaolin Showdown Trading Card Game". Wizards of the Coast. Retrieved 30 January 2012.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-08-18. Retrieved 2013-10-01. XiaolinChronicles.com - Information page
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