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Originally a mercenary and leader of the international crime cartel known as the Black Dragon, he rises beyond the level of mere brutality and aggression by also being sly and cunning. It was through his resourcefulness that he convinced Shao Kahn to spare his life, and it was through ruthless ambition that he later ascended to position of general of Outworld's armies. Kano combines the features of a cowardly minion, a lone survivor, a crazed madman, and an intelligent commander. His actions have made him the enemy of Lt. Sonya Blade.  A portion of Kano's face is covered with a metal plate, with the plated eye being a glowing red orb capable of emitting laserlike beams.

Kano is the leader of the Black Dragon organization, a criminal empire of cut-throat madmen. Making his first chronological appearance in Mortal Kombat: Special Forces, he freed fellow Black Dragon cohorts No Face, Tasia, Jarek and Tremor from a U.S. Special Forces security facility, under the pretense that they would reform the Black Dragon organization. In reality, he intended to use them as pawns to slow down any Special Forces agents who might pursue him. Annihilating an entire squad at the site of the prison break, he and his cohorts escaped. With his Black Dragon associates given their assigned tasks, Kano headed to Outworld where he recovered the Eye of Shitian, an artifact through which he would acquire incredible power. Unfortunately for him, however, Major Jackson Briggs had defeated his accomplices and caught up to him. The two fought, and Kano was defeated. Jax used the eye to transport them back to Earthrealm, and proceeded to bring Kano into custody, though Kano escaped soon after.

He entered Shang Tsung's Mortal Kombat tournament after hearing rumors that Tsung's palace was filled with gold and other riches: Kano intended to steal them for the Black Dragon. At that time, the Black Dragon was the primary target of the U.S. Special Forces and would remain so for a number of years. He was pursued by Lt. Sonya Blade, who held a personal grudge against Kano because he had killed a former partner of Sonya's. While Kano was free to take part in the tournament of his own accord, Sonya and her unit were captured by Shang Tsung's minions. Tsung offered Sonya an ultimatum: compete in Mortal Kombat, or she and her unit would be executed. If she won, they would all be free to go. Sonya and Kano survived the tournament but many others died, including Sonya's men. After the final battle between Shang Tsung and Liu Kang, Kano teamed up with Sonya and Johnny Cage to fight Goro. During the battle, the island began to crumble because of Shang Tsung's defeat and before they knew it, Kano and Sonya found themselves in a forest in Outworld. They were found and captured by Shang Tsung. Eventually, both Kano and Sonya were rescued by Jax, but before Kano could be arrested, he escaped back to Outworld.

Although most Earthrealm warriors assumed Kano to be dead, he instead managed to save his own life by convincing Shao Kahn to accept him as a weapons instructor for his armies. As a man with a knowledge of Earthrealm weaponry, he was the most suitable candidate. Later, during the events of Mortal Kombat Trilogy, Sonya tossed Kano to his (surmised) death from the roof of a high building. He was found by Motaro, who healed and imprisoned him. In turn, Motaro was attacked and killed by Sheeva, who freed Kano from his prison. Although they originally hatched a plan to murder Shao Kahn, Kano turned on Sheeva in the decisive moments, with Sheeva's death as a result. Kano was then hastily promoted to general of Outworld's rapidly shrinking army.

Eventually Kahn's forces were defeated. Earthrealm was free, and so was Edenia. Shao Kahn's act of promoting Kano, however, proved to be a lucky shot, as Kano was a very competent general. Even in the face of overwhelming odds and the tactical mastership of Princess Kitana and her Edenian-Shokan army, Kano stood ground and eventually managed to repel the invading army. He returned to Shao Kahn's palace just in time to watch from the shadows as Shang Tsung and Quan Chi sprung their attack on the weakened emperor. As soon as the battle was finished, Kano declared his allegiance to the new rulers of Outworld, the Deadly Alliance. The two had Kano oversee the enslavement of a small village, who would construct a temple over Onaga's tomb to house the Soulnado. During its construction, Kano was personally assaulted by Li Mei, but Quan Chi intervened. His intervention was due in no part for any particular affinity for the criminal, however. The Alliance had made a deal with the Red Dragon member Mavado; he would eliminate the swordsman Kenshi in exchange for the opportunity to fight and defeat Kano. Mavado attacked and left Kenshi for dead, earning his battle.

It would seem that Mavado won the fight, as in Mortal Kombat: Armageddon, Kano is found by Taven to have been held prisoner by the Red Dragon Clan for quite some time (possibly explaining his absence from Deception). Before escaping their facilities, Kano explains to Taven that the Red Dragon had been experimenting on him, as well as their own clan members, in an effort to create real-life genetically engineered Dragons and Human-Dragon Hybrids, Kano mentions that they were trying "something new" on him, although he leaves before he elaborates on what that "something" is. In his Mortal Kombat: Armageddon ending, when Kano defeats Blaze, the transformation completes and he becomes a reptilian black dragon.
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Mortal Kombat

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Mortal Kombat 3, Mortal Kombat 3 Ultimate, Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance, Mortal Kombat: Armageddon, Mortal Kombat VS DC Universe, Mortal Kombat 9, Mortal Kombat X, Mortal Kombat 11, Mortal Kombat 1 (Kameo)


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Page Updated:  Aug. 13th, 2022

Ugly f*cking Kano.... LOL. I think he is made for the "dumb" fighting game players. I don't know why I think that, I just know it's true. One of the MK originals, Kano is a definition of Mortal Kombat's "gritty" nature. He's pretty much every typical goon / asshole in a violent movie who usually dies in the first half. Kano's a dick. Yet, his personality and fighting style have pretty much stayed true to his roots over the years... a good thing for a character design. Ever since appearing in that decent fight scene with Sonya in the first MK movie (and literally having an actor attached to the character early on), Kano has had a certain "popular" stigma about him.

Kano is the self-proclaimed "alpha male" of the MK series. He's that asshole. In the early part of the franchise, Kano's moveset was an interesting mix of "white-guy martial arts who almost looks like he knows what he's doing" and pure brawling. In the latter part, Kano's more of the tough guy brawler and it mostly works for him (unless Kano's spine gets ripped out). Like most another "popular" MK characters... Kano's MK VS DC appearance was a painful joke... but his return in MK9 / MKX / MK11 made up for it. Some of his new moves are so violent, they're laughable (in a good way, I suppose). 

Fighting  Style  /  Moveset
Personality  /  Charisma
Outfit(s)  /  Appearance
Effectiveness  in  series
Overall Score



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