|Yang Xiao Long|
Blondie (by Junior)
Yellow, Brown, Orange
Draws Strength from Hits
Yang Xiao Long (阳小龙 [Simplified]; 陽小龍 [Traditional], literally: Sun Little-Dragon) is one of the main characters and the fifth character introduced in RWBY. Her weapon of choice is a pair of Dual Ranged Shot Gauntlets, Ember Celica.
She made her appearance on June 1st, 2013 at A-Kon in Dallas during the premiere of the "Yellow" Trailer, in which she interrogates Junior Xiong for information, and later fights him and his henchmen at his club.
Yang is a teenage girl who wears a tan vest with gold piping over a yellow, low-cut crop top with a black crest that resembles a burning heart. The vest has puffy cap sleeves with black cuffs. On the sides of the cuffs, there are two small, golden buttons.
She wears a brown belt with a buckle, a pouch, and a small banner-like object. The same burning heart crest appears on this banner, except golden in color. She wears black shorts under her belt, which resembles a pleated skirt in the back. Over the short shorts but under the belt is a white, asymmetrical back skirt.
Aside from an orange infinity scarf around her neck, she has no discernible jewelry. She wears brown, knee-high platform boots that appear to be made of leather, with orange socks of different lengths. Her left leg also has a gray, bandana-like object wrapped around the top of her boot. She wears fingerless black gloves underneath her weapons, which resemble two yellow mechanized gauntlets with a black design.
Her long blonde hair becomes lighter in color at the tips and flows in a loose and messy manner, with a few locks sticking out and a small cowlick on top of her head. She has a pale complexion and lilac eyes. Her hair seems to burst into flames the longer she fights. Her eyes turn red and her hair produces more fire when she becomes angry.
While on her motorcycle, Bumblebee, she wears yellow goggles and a matching helmet that bears her crest in black. When outdoors, she sometimes wears a pair of yellow-rimmed aviator sunglasses.
Yang's pajamas are an orange tank top with her flame emblem on the front, and brown boy shorts.
Alternate Outfit (Hunter)
During the events of "A Minor Hiccup" and "Painting the Town...," Yang wears a collared cream top over a black shirt, and over top of the former is a black article of clothing that consists of a raised collar, a strap across her collar bone, and mid-length sleeves that are gold at the end. Around her neck is a pendant that has a smooth, round, purple gem set in a round piece of metal that has a point coming off the left and right sides and a small oval shape coming from the bottom.
She has a pair of crooked black belts with gold accents across her hips, and a purple piece of fabric with lilac lace around the edges hangs from her left hip. She has a dark gray article of clothing coming down from under her cream top that is either a mini-skirt or part of her black shirt. It has vertical belted straps going down into her thigh-high black stockings, which have her burning heart emblem printed in yellow on the outer side of each leg near the top and a row of four gold pyramid studs above each knee.
She wears a pair of black boots with a series of belted straps across them. On the back of each boot at the top is a large white ribbon tied into a bow.
This outfit was codenamed "Hunter."
Yang's voice actor, Barbara Dunkelman, has said that when Yang's character was described to her, she was described as "the kind of person who would teach someone how to swim by pushing them in the water." This speaks volumes about how Yang approaches most things in life. She is very straightforward and confident.
She is also described as being an energetic and bright young lady. Additionally, she is arguably the most flippant and carefree member of her team, frequently making sarcastic comments and jokes even in the heat of battle and often taking combat and hostile situations extremely lightly, particularly when faced with foes she knows she can beat easily and who don't pose a threat to her; this is shown in her trailer against Junior, his men and the Malachite Twins, during her encounter with two Ursai in the Emerald Forest and during her second visit to Junior's club.
On all three of these instances she addresses her foes with a smile and seems to take joy in fighting them (going so far as to hold a one-sided conversation with the Ursai as they failed to scratch her), further showcasing her confidence in herself and her ability, possibly due to her powerful Semblance. However, she does take combat very seriously when she deems her opponent a threat or if she is sufficiently angered, such as when she is hit and her semblance activates or when her hair is damaged; this can be seen during her fights against Junior and the Ursai, as well as team RWBY's battles with the Nevermore and Atlesian Paladin-290.
Additionally, she enjoys having fun and dislikes being bored, complaining when Weiss dragged the rest of team RWBY to some "stupid docks." She is eager to take part in recreational acts, such as food fights and playing Remnant: The Game, and even helps organize Beacon's dance event alongside Weiss. She is also very sociable, and enjoys having conversations and making new friends.
Her straightforward and blunt nature can be seen in her trailer, where she approaches Junior and proceeds to interrogate him, in his own club, by grabbing his groin. Even as Junior's henchmen surround her, she is unfazed. Later, as she takes them all down in battle, she is seen smiling the entire time, possibly showing a joy or thrill for fighting.
Yang is extremely nurturing, particularly towards her younger sister, Ruby. Despite leaving her to go spend time with some friends upon arriving at Beacon Academy, Yang pushes Ruby into talking with other people and encourages her when she feels down about not knowing anyone in the school. This shows that she has a high amount of faith in her sister. Yang has also been shown to worry a great deal for her sister, such as when Ruby was almost killed by a Death Stalker's attack, but was saved by Weiss Schnee.
Yang hugs her sister in joy, glad that she is safe. She was also proud upon knowing that Ruby was announced as leader of Team RWBY. After getting to know her team, this protective and encouraging nature seems to have extended to Blake and Weiss as well, as Yang was shown to be worried for the former on several occasions, such as when she ran from her team and when she suffered from sleep and appetite problems, and guided the latter when playing Remnant: The Game.
Yang is shown to not be intimidated by the opposite gender and has no scruples about sleeping in a room full of both guys and girls. She unabashedly plays the part of the witless beautiful girl to fool Junior and make him lower his guard. After he tries to walk away, she tricks him once again by pretending to offer him a kiss, shortly before punching him and sending him flying across the room.
She is also somewhat vain, and is extremely protective of her hair. This is shown after she goes into a rage when Junior manages to pull off a few strands in their fight. Her love for her hair is shown again during her fight against the Ursai. She is initially completely casual in her approach to the creatures and easily converses with them and banters while dodging their attacks; however, after they sever a small strand of her hair she goes into a rage at both and refers to them as monsters, despite them being creatures of Grimm, and fitting the term before they touched Yang's hair.
Yang also has a humorous side to her, which is far more noticeable than Blake's, and enjoys joking around with others. This side of her is seen twice in "The Badge and The Burden," as she says "Banzai" along with Blake and Ruby. She later laughs at Ruby's comical drawing of Peter Port. Further cementing her 'teenage girl' credentials, Yang is a fan of the in-universe boy-band The Achieve Men.
Yang also shows sympathy for the Faunus. Upon seeing Velvet Scarlatina being bullied by Team CRDL, she states "...it must be hard to be a Faunus." Later on in "The Stray," she questions some of the more hyperbolic statements Weiss makes about the White Fang and, when Blake runs away upon them learning she was a member, Yang shows little concern about it and just wants to find Blake, saying that "either way, she's missing, and we've got to find her." Like Blake, she is very open about her beliefs and criticizes others if she thinks they're behaving inappropriately, frequently going against Weiss' remarks during their team's search for Blake and angrily questioning whether she even cared if they found her or not.
Yang also seems to enjoy making puns, although her team doesn't think they are funny. However, in "Painting the Town...," Yang herself has somewhat of little tolerance to other people's puns, as seen with Weiss. This was however due to Weiss making a joke following Roman's escape with Neo, where Yang shattered an illusion, as she did not find it funny, stating that there's a time and place for jokes, with that one not being it.
Yang is additionally shown to be very optimistic, often adopting a "glass half full" mentality and acting with enthusiasm towards even the bleakest of events - when teams RWBY and JNPR were confronted by the Deathstalker and Nevermore at the Forest Temple, she humorously remarked "Great, the gang's all here! Now we can die together." She also frequently attempts to cheer up her partner, Blake Belladonna, when she appears distant or worried, such as when she voiced her concern about the White Fang and Roman Torchwick's activity and when she refused to attend the school dance. This tends to achieve mixed results due to Blake's stoic personality, with Yang sometimes garnering a smile and sometimes merely annoying her partner.
Yang is also very confident in her looks, claiming to her team that she would "turn heads" at the Beacon Dance with the dress she had chosen. Yang also seems to have a love for adventure, which she states is one of the main reasons she decided to become a Huntress, not because she wanted to be a hero, as seen in "Mountain Glenn," during a conversation with Weiss and Blake. Yang's love for adventure was seen early on in the series, during the initiation, where she was screaming in joy upon flying through the air.
Despite her fun-loving demeanor and young age, Yang is deceptively mature, insightful and worldly-wise, and is capable of holding a serious discussion at length and offering intelligent, thoughtful advice. This is shown in "Burning the Candle," when she speaks to Blake about her worrying behavior and draws comparisons to her own past, convincing her that letting their goal consume her was not the right path to go down. She is also very driven and persistent, particularly when she wants to know something; over ten years after finding out her mother left her after birth, she continues searching for her to this day. However, she states that she never lets the search control her, unlike Blake, who was completely obsessed the investigation with Roman and the White Fang.
However, Yang still has other control issues. Her anger, one of her main assets in battle, can lead her to hold grudges towards opponents that have annoyed or wronged her. This is seen with Neopolitan, who escaped with Roman during their first encounter, and the self-satisfied smile on the woman's face led Yang to want to fight her. This lead to frustration on Yang's part, which eventually led to her easy defeat and near-death at Neo's hands.
Abilities & Powers
Yang's fighting style has been shown as much more aggressive than the other members of her team, bearing resemblance to boxing and kickboxing. She is quite agile as she is able to dodge an onslaught of Ursai with ease.
She also seems to physically be the strongest of the group. Her strength is displayed on numerous occasions, such as when her punch sent a fully grown man several feet into the air and through a glass pillar without the enhancement of her weapon. After equipping her gauntlets in the same scene, she causes a massive shockwave with one punch and later destroys Junior's weapon with a single punch. In "Burning the Candle," she carried a speaker on a shoulder that was heavy enough to cause her sister, a table, and a chair to jump off the ground when she put it down. In "Best Day Ever," Yang bests Lie Ren in single combat, albeit while wielding a turkey against Ren's leeks; she further showcases her strength by knocking him into the air, following up by jumping and punching him back to the floor. The impact creates a shockwave powerful enough to clear the area of the vending machines and furniture strewn about.
However, she was set upon immediately thereafter by Nora Valkyrie, who used her "weapon's" superior reach to land the first hit, launching Yang through the roof and high into the sky. In "Painting the Town...," Yang's true testament to her strength was revealed, as she was able to easily block a strike from the building-sized Atlesian Paladin-290 with her forearms, then proceeded to shatter its arm entirely with her counter punch. She was then capable of destroying it completely with a following blow as, according to Ruby, her power increases with every hit she receives, which is what makes her special. It is notable that she was able to perform this feat following just two hits from the Paladin and appeared to be uninjured after the fight itself; the limits to her Semblance, and what the extent of her power would be if she were to actually be injured, are as yet unknown.
In "The Emerald Forest," she was able to easily knock a sizable Ursa through several trees after being frenzied. Her strength was also shown in "Players and Pieces," where she was able to keep the mouth of a Nevermore open with one arm long enough to deliver multiple shots into its mouth. Yang is also shown to have a high degree of endurance, showing no signs of fatigue after the battles with the Nevermore or the Paladin. In "Search and Destroy," Yang was seen to be exhausted from fighting Beowolves, which is in contrast to her enhanced endurance overall, but this could have been contributed due to her having fought several fights one after another.
Her level of durability is also noticeably high, as she was able to withstand a barrage of missiles from Junior's Bazooka exploding in front of her with little to no damage, merely being thrown back by the force. She was also able to withstand Nora hitting her through the roof and high into the air with no ill effects, only falling back through another hole in the roof a few minutes later and laughing about it. This high level of durability is possibly due to her semblance, as Yang merely draws strength from each of these hits rather than being hurt. Yang has also shown to have exceptional accuracy when firing her Ember Celica at incoming attacks, intercepting missiles from Junior's Bazooka mid-flight and being able to land several shots on the Nevermore while it was in motion, with one shot making contact with the avian's eye. Yang also took several brutal attacks from the Atlesian Paladin, taking little to no damage, managing to get up rather quickly.
In addition to her phenomenal level of sheer strength, Yang also possesses great reflexes. In the "Yellow" Trailer, she was able to dodge and weave her way through a continuous hail of machine gun bullets fired by one of Junior's henchmen without being hit once, and notably without using the recoil of her gauntlets to further boost her speed. She was also able to punch and dodge her way through a hail of watermelons fired at her by team JNPR.
Yang's weapon is radically different compared to those used by the rest of Team RWBY, as the other weapons all include some sort of blade. Yang's primary weapon is a pair of gauntlets known as Ember Celica, which can retract into wristlets. When Yang throws a punch she can shoot explosive rounds from Ember Celica for moderate or short ranged attacks. Ember Celica also has powerful recoil which can be utilized to augment the force of her punch and accelerate her movements. She can also use her Ember Celica as a form of armor when defending against attacks in unarmed combat.
As she fights, her hair glows and catches fire and her eyes turn red as a side effect of her Semblance. Yang's hair glows because some of her power comes from her hair, much like in the Biblical story of Samson and Delilah, and the glow is a sign that she's charging her power. Yang has shown to be capable of controlling the level of her semblance during her fights. As the combat becomes more intense, she becomes faster and stronger and as a result, the fire in her hair appears. During the final state of her Semblance, her eyes turn red and her fire is capable of bursting out of her.
Although Yang is capable of controlling this, if she's angered, she naturally bursts her final state of Semblance. It's also shown that Yang can release fire from other parts of her body, apart from her hair, as it's shown that when she charges at Junior, her left leg supports her speed by shooting a burst of fire. Her fiery state may simply be a byproduct of her true Semblance, as Ruby states that Yang uses the energy from every blow she takes to make herself more powerful, showcased when Yang completely shattered the Atlesian Paladin in a few hits after being battered by it; this seems to be a form of kinetic energy absorption, with Yang subsequently redirecting said energy against her opponent.
Of course, her greatest strength is also her greatest weakness: Though Yang does get stronger from her anger and from taking damage, her frustration can be taken advantage of by skilled opponents. As seen in her fight with Neopolitan, fighters well-versed in dodging attacks and frustrating Yang can make her attacks predictable and easily avoided, making the added power useless. Aside from that, knocking her unconscious before she can reach her final stage completely negates her Semblance, as seen in the same fight. Yang is also noted to be weak against kick-based styles, seen when she struggled against Neopolitan and Melanie Malachite.
- The Chinese characters that make up Yang's full name, Yáng Xiǎo Lóng (Simplified: 阳小龙; Traditional: 陽小龍) can be roughly translated to "Little Light Dragon" or "Small Dragon of the Sunshine."
- Despite having a Chinese name, Yang is addressed by her first name. In Eastern culture, however, she would be addressed as "Xiao Long." This can be explained by the world of RWBY having different customs.
- Yang's name would also be pronounced as "Yah-ng She-ow Loh-ng" in a more traditional Chinese accent. However, Monty reasons that, since there is no China in Remnant, the proper Chinese pronunciation does not apply.
- Both Chinese and Japanese share many similar characters and have interchangeable readings as a result. If read in on'yomi, one possible way to read the kanji 陽小龍 is Yō Shi Ryū. However, most Japanese publications and translations of RWBY render Yang's name entirely in katakana: ヤン・シャオロン (Yan Shaoron), as they would a Western name.
- In Malay and Indonesian, the word yang is a popular slang term which is based from the word sayang (love/care) that means 'honey'/darling'. Thus, when Junior Xiong calls Yang "sweetheart," he may be calling Yang a translated version of her name.
- In her trailer, the character Yang is looking for is the "Transient Princess," an artwork by Monty Oum based on Final Fantasy VIII's Rinoa.
- In the episode "Burning the Candle," we learn that Yang is searching for her mother, who may be the woman in the picture.
- She has her own official Twitter account at RT_YangXiaoLong, like Ruby and Weiss.
- It was announced during the RWBY panel at RTX 2014 that Yang would be the next playable character in RWBY: Grimm Eclipse.
- According to Monty in an interview, Yang had more trouble fighting Melanie than her twin during the Yellow Trailer because she is weak against characters who use kicks as their primary fighting style, which can be true since Yang focuses more on a fist-based style.
- In "Burning the Candle," it is revealed that Yang and her sister Ruby are originally from Patch, an island off the coast of Vale.
- The younger Yang's pigtails, seen in the flashback sequence of "Burning the Candle," were inspired by Barbara, who also had pigtails when she was younger.