Names to Run Away From Really Fast/Animal

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A form of Names to Run Away From Really Fast: People and families can have animals, real and mythological, as part of their names, but in fiction it's usually a dangerous sign to meet someone with a predatory animal in their name. Wolf, dragon, lion, tiger, coyote, snake.

Note that animal names can go either way depending on the setting; they can imply evil, or can simply be used to imply that a character is fierce and dangerous, and as such, can be used for good characters or even heroes. Some animals are tipped more one way than others, of course; lions and wolves can imply nobility, but snakes and scorpions usually don't.

Examples of Names to Run Away From Really Fast/Animal include:

Contents

Bear

Most kinds of bear aren't well-known or catchy enough to get their own section, but watch out for anyone who goes by "Grizzly" or "Kodiak". However Russian bears (as a name, nickname, or title) definitely fit in this trope.

Anime and Manga

Literature

  • Beowulf: Beowulf's name is usually interpreted by linguists as "the bees' enemy", which in turn is tentatively a poetical expression for "bear".
  • The name of Beorn from The Hobbit means literally 'bear'. He can -- guess what? -- turn into a bear.

Live-Action TV

  • Chuck: 'Sugar Bear'.
  • This trope with a twist: in the Red Dwarf episode "Gunmen of the Apocolypse", one of the denizens of Kryten's western-themed dreamscape was named 'Bear-Strangler' McGee.

Video Games

Western Animation

  • Ursa (her name meaning 'she-bear') from Avatar: The Last Airbender is an aversion. Despite being the wife of the Fire Lord, she is shown to be a kind and loving mother ...who admittedly killed Azulon, the then-Fire Lord, for threatening the life of her son.
  • Ursula. The name actually means "little she-bear," but she turns it into a Name to Run Away From anyway.

Bull

Literature

  • From Ivanhoe, the stubborn and thuggish Reginald Front-du-Boeuf ("bull-head").

Live-Action TV

Theatre

  • Thady "The Bull" McCabe from John B. Keane's drama The Field.

Video Games

  • Red Minotaur from Devil Kings.
  • The Turkish Bald Bull from Punch-Out!!, who is one of the few characters with a One Hit Knock Out move and a nasty temper to boot.

Coyote

Anime and Manga

  • Bleach -- Coyote Starrk: The Primera Espada.

Video Games

Western Animation


Crow

Anime and Manga

Comic Books

  • Ashe Corven from The Crow series also qualifies, as it appears to be derived from 'corvus', the Latin word for 'crow'.

Fanfic

  • Karasu (Japanese for crow) from Three of Heart, One of Blood doesn't seem like this at first: He offers to Bring Yukimori back to life. Unfortunately, it doesn't hold, as he's a Legacy and can't raise the dead -- but he can cast extremely realistic illusions.

Live-Action TV

Video Games

Real Life

  • The Jim Crow laws of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
  • Russell Crowe might not look as sinister as some of the other examples listed here, but God help you if you ever edit his poetry!


Dragon

Anime and Manga

  • From One Piece, Dragon the Revolutionary. As noted further down, also overlaps with "Monkey."

Literature

  • Draco Malfoy from Harry Potter.
  • Dracula: Dracul, in Romanian, means "dragon" as well as "devil". Therefore, "Dracula" means "son of the dragon".
  • Rand Al'Thor and Lews Therin Telamon from The Wheel of Time.

Live-Action TV

Other

  • Dragin from yerCake.
  • Drago from Rocky 4.

Video Games

Western Animation

  • Avatar: The Last Airbender:
    • Uncle Iroh, nicknamed "The Dragon of the West".
    • Long Feng, whose name means "Dragon Phoenix" in Chinese. Bonus points for sounding like "long fang".

Real Life

  • Draco, a lawmaker from ancient Greece, from whom we get the term "draconian" as in "draconian penalties", meaning extremely harsh penalties. His name is similar enough to the Greek word for dragon, and so little is known about the man himself, that it's up for debate whether this is a coincidence, or whether Draco is an assumed name chosen to invoke this trope.
  • Vlad Dracul and his son Vlad Dracula of Wallachia (the bynames meaning "dragon" and "the dragon's son" respectively), who were certainly apt to invoke this trope in their lifetime. The name, however, has a relatively harmless origin story, as it became the elder Vlad's nickname when he joined the the Order of the Dragon, a late-medieval chivalric order.
  • Billy Drago is the stage name of a character actor who generally plays Smug Snake variants. Coincidentally, it's his mother's real surname.
  • Sir Francis Drake works if you're Spanish.


Eagle

Anime and Manga

Film

  • General Orlov from Octopussy ("oryol" means "eagle" in Russian).

Live Action TV

Video Games

  • Eagle of Advance Wars.
  • Psychonauts, where Eagle is one of the four animal-themed luchadores running around in the head of Edgar Teglee, with Tiger, Cobra, and Dragon making up the rest. His catchphrase: Ca-caw!.


Falcon

Video Games


Flamingo

Anime and Manga

  • One Piece: Donquixote Doflamingo, a nihilistic pirate and puppet-master who slices people into pieces. He dresses in a pink, feathery coat and dabbles in slave trade, and abandons it because it's become passe (the slave trade, not the coat).

Literature

  • Lord Vetinari of the Discworld series often reminds people of a sober flamingo. A predatory one.

Live Action TV

  • CJ's Secret Service codename on The West Wing is flamingo. She does not appreciate this.
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CJ: The flamingo is a ridiculous-looking bird!

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Fox (Vixen, Reynard, etc.)

Variations of "Reynard" -- the original trickster-fox from the medieval stories -- include, but are not limited to, Renard, Reinhardt, Reineke; possibly even Renfield. If somebody in your group has a variation of that last name, avoid him. He's The Mole.

Film

  • In the Rush Hour sequels, not one but two villains have names that translate to "Fox" in that character's native language: Hu Li, from 2, and Inspector Renard from 3.
  • After The Fox, starring Peter Sellers as the criminal Master of Disguise "The Fox". Of course, this is a subversion, played for laughs.
  • Renard, the Big Bad of The World Is Not Enough.

Literature

  • Le Renard Subtil is the name of the villain in the novel Last of the Mohicans. DEFINITELY traitorous.
  • Zorro. Means, in case you didn't know, 'fox'.

Live-Action TV

Video Games

Web Comics

  • Gunnerkrigg Court's resident plush doll-possessing fox spirit Reynardine, a.k.a. Renard.

Western Animation

Real Life


Hawk

Anime and Manga

Film

Literature

Live-Action TV

  • Stringfellow Hawke, pilot of the meanest chopper in the skies, Airwolf.

Professional Wrestling

  • Hawk of the Legion of Doom.

Video Games

Web Original


Jackal

Pretty much anybody named "Jackal" is either an assassin or a terrorist.

Comic Books

Film

  • The otherwise anonymous assassin, from 1973's The Day of the Jackal (an adaptation of the Frederick Forsyth novel), and 1997's remake of the movie, The Jackal.

Literature

Video Games


Lion (Leo, Leonidas, etc.)

"Ari", "Aslan" or any non-English variant that's not immediately obvious doesn't count.

Anime and Manga

Film

Live-Action TV

  • Lionel, Lex Luthor's uber-villainous dad in Smallville.

Tabletop Games

  • Lion El'Jonson, in addition to being an homage to a poet. Primarch of the Dark Angels of Warhammer 40,000.

Video Games

Real Life

  • Leon Trotsky fought off an assassin who had just whacked an icepick into his skull.


Monkey

Anime and Manga

  • Goku from Dragon Ball. In the first series, he has a tail, the cloud that transports him around, and his magic staff, not to mention adapted forms of many of the companions.
  • The title character from the Saiyuki series, a Bishounen-looking fellow restrained by the crown from the original stories, who fights with a staff.
  • The Monkey D. family of One Piece, which includes main character Monkey D. Luffy, his father revolutionary leader Monkey D. Dragon, and his fearsome Marine grandfather Vice-Admiral Monkey D. Garp.

Film

Literature

  • The Baboon Warrior is a post-human 'tagonist (pro-? an-? it's never quite clear) from Shiva3000. He kills malfunctioning Hindu gods.
  • One of the lead characters in the oft-retold Journey to the West, Sun Wukong (or Son Goku).


Mustelids (weasels, skunks, badgers, and wolverines)

They may not be particularly dangerous on the surface, but they will be the sort of person who holds a grudge and will not let go of it.

Anime and Manga

  • Itachi from Naruto, whose name literally means "Weasel".

Comic Books

  • Years ago there was a comic series starring one Norbert Sikes, who put on a costume and fought crime in the streets as... the Badger. Yeah, he was nuts. It was a great book, though.
  • Marvel's Wolverine.

Film

  • Newsies has a character named Weasel.

Literature

Live-Action TV

Western Animation


Other wildcat species

Anime and Manga

  • Bleach: The name of Grimmjow's release counts: Pantera.

Video Games

Raptor

Anime and Manga

  • Rex Raptor of Yu-Gi-Oh! could be a subversion.

Video Games


Raven

Anime and Manga

  • Ravenus from the Linkage mini-comics packed in with the Micron Legend DVD's in Japan. Also a pun on "ravenous", to boot.
  • Also, Raven from Zoids.
  • Raven is also one of many Chains found in the world of Pandora Hearts.

Comic Books

Fanfic

Film

Literature

  • The ultimate Badass from Snow Crash
  • Raven is one of the worst of a legion of anti-heroes in Glen Cook's The Black Company series.
  • Raven from the HIVE books is an incredibly well-trained ex-Soviet assassin who serves as personal assistant to the school's headmaster.
  • Harry Potter -- Ravenclaw, one of the four Houses of Hogwarts.
  • Reflections of Eterna: The raven is the crest of Alva's.

Live-Action TV

Sports

  • The Baltimore Ravens of the NFL, named for Edgar Allan Poe's poem The Raven. Definitely run, rather than try to get into an altercation with one of them in a nightclub.

Tabletop Games

Video Games

Web Comics

Scorpion

Anime and Manga

Comic Books

Film

Literature

  • The Alacráns from House of the Scorpion count. Their last name, of course, means scorpion.
  • Arguably Scorpius, Draco Malfoy's son in the epilogue of Harry Potter.
  • Scorpio, the international criminal organisation from the Alex Rider books.

Live-Action TV

Video Games

Web Comics

Western Animation

  • Hank Scorpio, Homer's 'Bond villain'-esque boss on The Simpsons.
  • Scorponok of Transformers: Beast Wars was an exception. Other Transformers with the name aren't, though. And given the main theme, often were likely to have a form that involves a stinger hanging over their body.

Real Life


Shrike

A bird that impales insects or lizards onto sharp branches to feed on them. In short, the animal gets shish-kabobed.

Literature

  • The Hyperion series by Dan Simmons features a Nigh Invulnerable, time-traveling robot assassin known as The Shrike, who is definitely not someone you want to mess with, primarily because it will live up to its name.
  • Shrike the Stalker in the UK release of Mortal Engines (Grike in the US).
  • The Edge Chronicles features "shrykes", vicious and merciless birdwomen.

Tabletop Games

Video Games


Snake (Viper, Cobra, etc)

American Football

  • Famed Oakland Raiders (among others) quarterback and noted hellraiser Ken "The Snake" Stabler.

Anime and Manga

  • Orochimaru of Naruto fame. In Japanese, his name is usually written as 大蛇丸; the middle character 「蛇」 means "snake." Additionally, the Orochi (written as 大蛇) is itself an evil snake from Japanese mythology.
  • One Piece: Boa Hancock, the "Snake Princess". Also Nefertari Cobra, King of Alabasta.
  • Kimba the White Lion: Viper Snakely, the resident Evil Poacher.

Comic Books

  • DC Comics villain Kobra.
  • Marvel Comics has enough snake-themed villains that they formed their own team, the Serpent Squad (later expanded into the Serpent Society).
  • G.I. Joe: Cobra.

Film

Literature

  • William Makepeace Thackeray had a lovable traitor family named the Crawleys, and Anthony Trollope, who was heavily influenced by him gave the last name to a noble character.
  • It's probably worth noting Good Omens has Noble Demon Crowley originally named "Crawly" (he was the serpent in the Garden of Eden), and whose present name is an allusion to famous Satanist Alastair Crowley. (The demon's first name however, subverting this, is Anthony.)
  • Harry Potter -- Slytherin House (whose emblem is a snake, and whose name sounds like 'slithery') and its founder Salazar Slytherin. In-universe, "Slytherin alumnus" is almost a synonym of "dark wizard".

Live-Action TV

  • The title character of Blackadder.
  • Kamen Rider Ohja. His name translates to Snake King.

Video Games

  • Solid (and Liquid and Solidus) Snake of Metal Gear Solid.
  • Serpent from Mega Man ZX, and his company, Slither Inc.
  • Orochi, of the Warriors Orochi games.
  • Onaga, the name of the Big Bad of Mortal Kombat: Deception, is Japanese for "king cobra". Also, Kobra from the same game.
  • The assassin known as "The Azul Viper" in Rift. (Also keep in mind that with a real name like "Kira Thanos," she scarcely needs a nom de guerre.)
  • Cobra the Iron Man from Silent Scope.

Western Animation


Spider

Much like Fox, it's a trickster's name.

Anime and Manga

  • Onigumo from Inuyasha, whose name is composed of "oni" (a troll or ogre) and "kumo" (spider). And if Kikyo had just run away from him really fast, the whole series could have been averted.
  • Pani Poni Dash!: Tsurugi Inugami in addition to Tsurugi, he is also Inugami -- not just an animal, it is a Japanese god.

Comic Books

  • Special mention to the various Black Widow villainesses.
  • Transmetropolitan: Spider Jerusalem, rogue journalist.
  • In a rare plant-related example, Bone's Briar and Rose. Guess who's the baddie.
  • Spider Man, as well as Tarantula and Black Tarantula.

Film

  • Dr. Aranya from Mesa of Lost Women, a play on the word araña, which is Spanish for Spider.
  • Lost in Space: Dr. Smith.

Literature

Western Animation


Tiger

Anime and Manga

  • Benitora/Crimson Tiger from Samurai Deeper Kyo.
  • Aisaka Taiga (yes, it's pronounced pretty much the way it sounds) from Toradora!. For bonus points, in addition to the Spanish meaning of the title, "Tora" means "tiger".

Comic Books

Film

Live Action TV

  • Kamen Rider Tiger.

Video Games

Western Animation

  • El Tigre takes this trope and runs with it.

Real Life

  • Lady of War Caterina Sforza, nicknamed Il Tigre, the Tiger.


Wolf (Wolfen, Wulf, Adolf, Lupin, Volk, etc.)

Though after World War II, naming a villain "Adolf" has become a Dead Horse Trope.

Anime and Manga

Comic Books

Film

Literature

Live-Action TV

  • Wolfram & Hart from Angel.
  • El Lobo Fuerte from Mega64 Version 2.

Tabletop Games

Video Games

Web Comics

Real Life

  • Adolf Hitler seemed to have had an affinity of some sort for wolves. His first name derives from Athalwolf, Old High German for "noble wolf", and for this reason "Wolf" became his childhood nickname. He later used it as a pseudonym for himself in the 1920s, ostensibly for security reasons. Three of his military headquarters were named Wolfsschanze ("wolf's lair"), Wolfsschlucht ("wolf's chasm"), and Werwolf ("werewolf").
  • The Eighth Fighter Wing is collectively known as "The Wolfpack", named after their most famous wing commander, Robin Olds, who used the callsign "Wolf 01" when he lead the 8th in battle during the Vietnam War. Famous for using F-4C Phantoms to imitate the much slower and more vulnerable F-105 Thunderchiefs.
  • Vladimir Wolfovich Zhirinovsky is a right-wing Russian politician known for extreme electoral promises and utter lack of principles.

Other

Anime and Manga

  • Sylia Stingray of Bubblegum Crisis.
  • From Naruto is Hoshigaki Kisame (Kisame means demon shark) and his sword Samehada (sharkskin). It's also very literally a Meaningful Name, since Kisame looks like a shark, uses shark-based attacks and can fuse with Samehada in a shark hybrid.
  • Alligator Nichol from Jackals is not to be trifled with.

Film

Video Games

Western Animation


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