The Shrek franchise is in the process of showcasing its final movie on May 21st and many venerable characters will be giving their final performance. Donkey, Shrek’s sidekick, is voiced superbly by Eddie Murphy and relays even more comic relief as a foil for the large green ogre.
Although Shrek and Donkey are best friends, it didn’t start that way. Donkey literally ran into Shrek after fleeing from Lord Farquaad’s knights to begin the original movie. Since then, Donkey has been pestering Shrek constantly. Donkey has always been the enthusiastic one of the bunch who is always willing to take on new adventures.
When Shrek needed someone to go with him to find Lord Farquaad to get the fairy tale creatures off his land, Donkey was right there when he needed him. When Shrek rescues Fiona from the castle it is Donkey who distracts the female dragon with his charm and wit long enough for Shrek to get Fiona to safety.
Donkey also convinced Shrek to go rescue Princess Fiona after Farquaad took her to be his bride. Donkey serves as a conscience and confidante to Fiona who tells him about her curse to be an ogre by night and human by day. Fiona may not have fallen for Shrek and decided to marry him if not for Donkey and then the story would have ended very quickly.
Far, Far Away
In the second film Donkey accompanies Shrek and Fiona to meet Fiona’s parents. As the rulers of Far, Far Away Shrek’s beloved pal sees the brighter side of things and tries to make dinner that evening go smoothly when conversations turn sour.
Shrek tries to find Fairy Godmother to make things right and Donkey is right there going on another whirlwind adventure. He is jealous of Shrek’s bond with his new found friend Puss in Boots and then gets rewarded for helping raid Fairy Godmother’s potion factory by getting turned into a white stallion by the Happily Ever After potion.
In the end, it is Donkey’s fast galloping that gets Shrek to the castle in time to save his love and stop Prince Charming from taking Shrek’s place on the throne. As the story finishes Donkey rides in with Puss in Boots to help Shrek save the day and then he finds out he is the proud papa of flying donkey mutant babies.
Finding the True King
In the third movie Donkey is off with Shrek on another adventure giving his worldly advice as usual. He sets sail with Shrek to find Artie after Fiona’s father dies and relinquishes the throne of Far, Far Away. Always looking on the bright side of Shrek’s fiasco Donkey tells Shrek that being a father isn’t so bad even though it is exhausting.
The hilarity continues for Donkey when Merlin the wizard zaps him and Puss in Boots and they switch bodies temporarily. In a twist of fate, Puss and Donkey understand each other a little bit better when they discover the other one is a bit too gross.
In a new future where Shrek and Fiona never met, Donkey is down on his luck as a true beast of burden that spends all day pulling a cart. His fur is matted, dirty, sweaty, and is far from the white stallion of Shrek 2. Yet somehow Donkey retains some measure of an upbeat attitude when he finds friendship all over again with his big green buddy.
When Shrek convinces Donkey to help take Fiona and Puss on one last adventure Donkey realizes that it is better than his regular life as a downtrodden and dirty mule. Friendship outlasts the test of time as he goes on another whirlwind adventure with Shrek in this concluding film.