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And I don't mean it metaphorically, or rhetorically, or poetically, or theoretically, or in any other fancy way. I'm Death. Straight. Up.
―Lobo revealing his identity to Puss.

Lobo, also referred to as the Wolf or Death, is one of the main antagonists in the DreamWorks film, Puss in Boots: The Last Wish.

He is the Grim Reaper, otherwise described as the physical embodiment of death, who takes the form of a white wolf in a black hooded cloak with twin sickles. He is intent on killing the legendary Puss in Boots once and for all as punishment for carelessly wasting eight of his nine lives.

Background[]

Personality[]

You know… I'm not a cat person. I find the very idea of nine lives ABSURD! And you, didn't value ANY of them. So, why don't I do us both a favor, and take this last one… now?
―Lobo to Puss in Boots.

Lobo is a cunning and sinister individual whose sole purpose is to take the souls of the deceased. Although he waits for people to die naturally, if someone angers or offends him enough, he will physically manifest in order to attempt to take their life by force.

Lobo is sadistic and thrill-seeking, as he takes a degree of pride and pleasure in his job, and openly admits that he enjoys striking fear into his victims. This is shown by the pleasure he took in scaring and provoking Puss in Boots with his taunts, eerie whistling, and his very presence, and how he got especially excited when he managed to draw blood on the cat. Lobo also admits to having a dislike of cats and the fact that they have nine lives, finding the very idea to be "absurd".

Despite Lobo's sadistic and sinister nature, he does have a sense of honor and nobility, as his main reason for pursuing Puss in the first place was to punish the cat for arrogantly squandering his eight lives with reckless abandon, concluding from this that it would be best to kill Puss before he wasted his final life. Not to mention Puss often declared that he “laughed in the face of death”, therefore Lobo was insulted and disrespected by Puss by his words as well as his deeds in wasting his lives. This indicates that despite representing the end of mortal life, Lobo holds Life sacred and is disgusted by those who don't treat their own lives with true appreciation or care. He also has a sense of fair play, as he always gives Puss the chance to fight back whenever they encountered each other, even giving Puss's old sword back to him for their final duel on the Wishing Star. This suggests Lobo prefers to give fair fights for those who challenge him, but his comments about how much he would enjoy taking Puss out from the realm of the living seems to indicate that he may have brought him his sword back just for sport, finding it more entertaining to see Puss fight rather than just surrender.

When Puss finally stops running from him and instead fights him while promising to respect his final life with his friends, Lobo, despite being infuriated that Puss has changed and thus "ruined his hunt", quickly calms down and recognizes that killing him now would be pointless and unethical. Thus, Lobo honorably decides to let Puss live out his final life, respectfully biding the cat to live his last life well. However, he does warn Puss that they will meet again eventually (when Puss's life finally comes to a permanent end). This all but proves that Lobo isn't unbeatable even if he is unavoidable in the long run.

Overall, Lobo is best described as a harsh, but fair individual who takes his job seriously and enjoys a thrilling challenge, but doesn't kill just for the sake of it and is able to respect those who prove him wrong.

Physical Appearance[]

Lobo is a large, silvery-white, bipedal wolf with an elongated snout, sharp teeth, and bright blood-red eyes that glow when he's excited. He wears a black riding cloak with a built-in hood, brown trousers under the cloak, and dark brown leather bandages around his forearms. He carries a pair of razor-sharp sickles that can be combined at the handle and extended to form a double-bladed glaive.

Powers and Abilities[]

Being the physical embodiment of death itself, Lobo possesses great physical and supernatural abilities. He is an exceptionally skilled and powerful fighter, being able to hold his own very well against the legendary swordsman Puss in Boots, and is one of the very few that can match the cat's speed and agility. In fact, Lobo is the only known individual who has ever managed to draw blood on Puss with a blade.

Lobo is very strong, being able to smash Crystals with his blades with no effort at all, and has some amount of control over fire, which was shown by him conjuring a ring of fire around himself and Puss for their final duel. He can go anywhere he likes, which is shown by him being completely unaffected by the Dark Forest, appearing inside a crystal trap that isolated Puss in Boots and effortlessly passing through the star wall.

Appearances[]

Puss in Boots: The Last Wish[]

“Hey, I never do this, but... can I get your autograph? Been following you for a long time. Sign right there.” (He pulls out a wanted poster of Puss and points to the word 'dead')
―Lobo to Puss in Boots, in The Last Wish.

Puss first meets the Wolf after being told by the town veterinarian that he is down to his ninth life, meaning that if he dies again there's no coming back. Puss isn't bothered by this, as he goes down to his favorite bar to relax and drink some milk to avoid his problems. That attempt to deflect the serious news is suddenly interrupted by a sinister, melodic whistle. The source of that whistle is coming from a mysterious hooded figure, who appears seemingly out of nowhere and sits right next to Puss. The menacing figure claims to be a fan, but when he asks Puss to sign a wanted poster specifically where it says "dead", it's clear that he's got something else in mind.

Believing that this is just another bounty hunter trying to collect a reward on him, Puss triumphantly draws his sword, only to have it immediately swatted away by The Wolf. The two have a duel, but it's one that Puss is losing the entire time, with the Wolf somehow calculating and predicting every single move he makes. The fight concludes when the Wolf deprives Puss of his rapier and grazes the cat's forehead with one of his sickles, drawing a stream of blood which drips down Puss's face. As the terrifying realization that his demise will be permanent dawns on Puss, the Wolf picks up the scent of the blood and gets eerily excited to dispatch the cat, dragging his twin sickles across the floor as sparks fly. The horrific beast orders Puss to pick up his sword so they can finish their duel, but Puss flees out of fear instead, escaping through the sewage system, much to The Wolf's amusement.

Lobo continues to hunt Puss after this initial encounter, his mere presence and signature whistle-song being enough to drive the cat into a panic. But in the Cave of Lost Souls in the Dark Forest is where they finally meet again. Lobo reveals his true identity and explains that he has come to personally kill Puss not for money or fame, but instead to punish him for arrogantly squandering eight of his nine lives with reckless abandon, all while "laughing in the face of death". Seeing Puss conversing with reflections of his past eight lives, Lobo also expresses his disgust for how cats have nine lives due to how some such as Puss can carelessly squander them, and shatters the crystal reflections as he tries to kill Puss. Utterly terrified that he has come face-to-face with the embodiment of the very thing he once laughed at, Puss runs away, much to Lobo's amusement.

What's the matter? Lives flashing before your eyes?
―Lobo as he faces Puss in Boots on the Wishing Star.

Soon, with Puss's close ones and enemies watching from the various points of the fabled Wishing Star, except for "Big" Jack Horner trapped in his bottomless bag, they witness a final showdown between the fearless hero and the Grim Reaper, where the harbinger of Lobo slashes the ground with his sickles to summon a ring of fire around himself and Puss. He gives Puss his sword back for a proper climactic battle. Lobo has enjoyed the chase thus far, but grown tired of the cheap novelty and is ready to make that final notch on his sickle and move on to the next arrogant feline. But this time, Puss is ready to face the powerful enemy, now having true loved ones to protect and a last life he wishes to cherish.

Puss rises to the occasion and disarms his foe, mirroring the scene where they first met, where Lobo taunted Puss to pick up his weapon but with Puss now the one taunting Lobo, not out of arrogance, but out of mutual respect. Puss makes clear that he'll never truly be able to defeat Lobo and only wishes to keep him at bay so he can cherish this one life before it later reaches its end. Frustrated, but also impressed, Lobo curses in Spanish out of rage.

Lobo stares into Puss' soul, telling the cat that he came here to claim the life of "an arrogant little legend who thought he was immortal", but he doesn't see that in Puss anymore. Lobo tells Puss that they will meet again one day and this time, Puss will accept what fate has planned for him. Just like that, Lobo tells the cat to live out his last life to the fullest as he finally departs, once again whistling that familiar tune as he walks off with a newfound respect for Puss in Boots.

Quotes[]

Wiki
DreamWorks Wiki has a collection of quotes said by Death.

Gallery[]

Trivia[]

  • Lobo is based on the folkloric character of the Grim Reaper.
  • Lobo is depicted as a wolf due to wolves often associated with death.
    • If this is true then he could be similar to Bloodwolf another character from the Puss in Boots series and Shrek franchise who is depicted as a wolf due to wolves and as the source of all Fear, with a major difference being that Lobo is more merciful and far less evil and malicious.
  • While it’s implied, Lobo is never seen or shown killing others.
  • In order to not spoil Lobo's true identity, which isn't revealed until much later, he is credited as the "Big Bad Wolf" (or at least "the Wolf") in promotional material, although he is never dual sickles he wields are a direct reference to the aforementioned Grim Reaper's scythe, both being farming equipment.
    • The proof of such a claim is that they can join together to create a double-sided shaft weapon, which effectively makes it a double-ended scythe.
  • Contrary to appearance, he is not a bounty hunter, but instead, this is just what Puss mistook him for until he revealed his true identity later on.
  • Lobo admitted that he hated that cats have nine lives, considering it to be absurd and he held a personal contempt for Puss, who arrogantly squandered eight of his lives, in reckless abandon all the while claiming he "laughs in the face of death". This basically means that Puss was insulting Lobo every time he said this remark.
  • Lobo is the only character completely unaffected by the Dark Forest, appearing inside a crystal trap that isolated Puss in Boots and showing the ability to effortlessly pass through the star wall. This is because he is not a mortal being, but instead the personification of death itself, the end of mortal existence.
  • Lobo is considered one of the most powerful villains in the Shrek franchise and the most terrifying character in the Puss in Boots franchise.
  • From a certain point of view, Lobo is easily the most heinous Shrek villain, as he has been killing thousands since the beginning of time due to his role in taking out the souls of the dead from the realm of the living. That said, given how everyone dies eventually, it can be said that Lobo just hunts down souls because that's his job.
  • There are several subtle hints about Lobo's true identity throughout the film:
    • He makes his very first entrance by suddenly appearing right next Puss with ghostly silence.
    • His weapons are a pair of sickles and his attire is a pitch black cowl, which bare a strong resemblance to the Grim Reaper's scythe and cloak respectively.
    • During his first encounter with Puss, the Wolf notes that "Everyone thinks they'll be the one to defeat me. But no one's escaped me yet", meaning that everybody dies one day (except Hercules which is from a totally different movie by the same name by a different movie company).
    • When Puss once makes another crack at death, the Wolf scratches Puss's wanted poster using one of his claws, hinting why he's actually here.
    • When Puss, Kitty and Perrito escape from "Big" Jack Horner's henchman, the Wolf has two stray coins over his eyes as he watches him leave, making him look like a corpse. This is also a reference as to how Ancient Greeks buried the dead (specialized funerary practice) with coins over their eyes so they would have money for passage to the Underworld.
      • This ironically resembles the phenomenon by which the eyes of wild animals glow fiery and vibrant colors when the angle of light is just right, which makes him appear all the more menacing.
    • Lobo keeps appearing out of thin air with seemingly no one but Puss (initially) able to see him. This is a pretty clear indication that the Wolf is no mere bounty hunter.
    • Lobo appears on the four corners of the numbered cards during Puss’ death montage.
  • There are a few indications of Puss in Boots’ nine lives being wrecked by the potential presence of Lobo in the bar scene:
    • Before he even suddenly appears at the bar next to Puss, the bell in the background of the bar toils 8 times, referencing Puss’ past 8 lives, the last one wanting to be taken by Death, referenced by candles blowing out at the toil of the final bell.
    • While Puss is at the bar sipping one of his cups filled with milk, 8 other finished milk-filled cups can be seen at the bar counter, referencing that Death is about to come for Puss’ 9th life.
  • Lobo’s whistle is regarded as one of the most realistic elements for Death up-to-date, as Lobo’s whistle is a nod to the fact that European villages hold a mysterious creature known as “The Whisperer.” Because of this, villagers would lock their doors and stay in at night. Since the whistle is used as a metaphor for the call of actual death.
  • The fact that Lobo appears as a hooded white warrior wolf instead of a black-cloaked skeleton with a scythe expands the idea that The Grim Reaper is capable of portraying itself as anything it wants to be to fulfill its mission. However, there are at least two logical explanations as to why it would adopt such a specific form to combat Puss in Boots:
    • For the sole purpose of hunting down Puss in Boots, it took the form of a wolf to not only represent the classic feline/canine rivalry, but also to represent its own thrill of the hunt because wolves the purest general expression of wolves would be fearless, relentless, and fierce hunters.
  • This would DreamWorks's second attempt of creating a character that is about the entity of Death, first time being the Angel of Death from The Prince of Egypt.

External links[]

Navigation[]

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Media
Films: ShrekShrek 2Shrek the ThirdShrek Forever AfterPuss in BootsPuss in Boots: The Last WishShrek 5

TV Specials: Shrek 4-DShrek the HallsScared ShreklessPuss in Boots: The Three Diablos
Shows: The Adventures of Puss in Boots
Shorts: Shrek in the Swamp Karaoke Dance Party!Far Far Away IdolDonkey's Caroling Christmas-tacularThriller NightThe Pig Who Cried WerewolfThe Trident
Books: ShrekPuss in Boots
Video Games: Shrek SuperSlamShrek Smash n' Crash RacingShrek Super PartyDreamWorks Super Star Kartz
Theatrical Plays: Shrek The Musical

Characters
Protagonists: ShrekFionaDonkeyPuss in BootsKitty SoftpawsPerrito

Allies: DragonPinocchioGingerbread ManThree Little PigsWolfThree Blind MiceQueen LillianKing HaroldArthur PendragonSnow WhiteCinderellaSleeping BeautyFarkle, Fergus and FeliciaDronkeysDorisBrogan
Villains: Lord FarquaadTheloniousMonsieur HoodMerry MenFairy GodmotherPrince CharmingRumpelstiltskinFifiJack & JillHumpty DumptyRapunzelCaptain HookEvil QueenHeadless HorsemanCyclopsPied PiperBloodwolf"Big" Jack HornerDeathGoldilocksPapa BearMama BearBaby BearSerpent Sisters
Spin-Off: DulcineaImeldaTalking CricketMama LunaPhoenixThe TerrorThe SphinxTimmyPerlaGonzaloDoctorCallistaAlessandra Belagomba

See also
Locations: DulocFar Far AwayOgre SwampPoison Apple InnPotion FactoryWorcestershire Boarding School

Songs: BarracudaRoyal PainWelcome to Duloc
Cast: Antonio Banderas (Puss in Boots) • Aron Warner (Wolf) • Amy Sedaris (Cinderella/Jill) • Val Bettin (Bishop) • Susanne Blakeslee (Evil Queen) • Andrew Adamson (additional voices)

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