Courage is a small pink dog of undetermined breed (or breeds, possibly a mix) with thin but long black ears. He has a black diamond-like nose and tiny limbs. His middle toe always seems to point straight ahead regardless of stance, making it appear as though Courage is always tip-toeing. He has numerous large human-like teeth with one having a circular hole in it. He has three black spots on his back.
Courage, as the show's title suggests, is an extremely cowardly and anxious dog, easily frightened by almost anything. Despite this, when his owners or friends are in the face of danger, he will stop at nothing to save them, making him easily the bravest and most morally-aligned character throughout the series.
Though he is willing to risk his own life to protect Muriel at all costs, his irrationality sometimes causes others to doubt his intuition. Courage has been presented as an almost entirely selfless character, working to benefit others with usually little to no regard for his own well-being, risking his own life dozens of times simply to assure his owner's safety.
Although his secondary owner, Eustace, is cruel to him, he is not offended by his harsh words and cruel tricks, especially compared to Muriel. This is most likely because he has learned to deal with the jealous man's cruel jokes and short temper over time. Despite this, Courage has been shown to care about Eustace's safety as well (although not as much as Muriel's) and will go great lengths to protect him from danger (although he is not as successful in protecting him as he is with Muriel). On some occasions, Courage would team up with Eustace in an attempt to save Muriel or themselves from danger.
Courage doesn't particularly talk much. When distressed, he speaks in a gibberish 'dog language', but when calm, Courage shows that he does in fact speak English (though few people pay attention to him when he actually does). He usually communicates his emotions through whines and howls, as he presumably prefers.
Courage is somewhat childish in his spare time, as he has expressed interest in and enjoys playing with toys and building sandcastles, as well as other childish or dog-like activities (such as burying or digging things up).
HistoryA pink puppy was born to Henry and his kind wife in a large, gated property. His parents had an aristocratic fascination in canine objects, his well being was always of the utmost concern. While successfully learning to catch a ball, he accidentally got his head stuck in between the bars of the fence and he was taken to the Pets of Tomorrow veterinarian office. Here, he was freed by a seemingly kind doctor, who gave him a lollipop and ushered him out of the room so he could "speak" to his parents alone. His tongue got stuck to the surface of the sucker, and then tore off, so the baby dog rushed back to be nurtured by his parents. When he returned, the three were gone and screams pleading for assistance could be heard from the hallway. He abandoned his candy and rushed in to find the veterinarian carrying his parents away in a net. They begged the doctor to not separate them from their son. He rushed after them for help. While he runs down a long hallway, Courage comes upon 3 doors, which he opens, revealing a lady showering, a bizarre giraffe, and a giant Ostrich on the other sides. Courage runs off to find his parents and rushes into a room of caged dogs, and then into another room where he discovered his parents being forced into a rocket ship. He tried to help them before its launch but failed, as his fear drove him to flee into a garbage chute which led to a back alley. From there he watched as his family was sent away into space forever, as the rocket engines ignite and lifted off the ground from the building, while waving a tearful goodbye to them. Crying alone, he was found by Muriel. Muriel took pity on him and took him home with her. She named him Courage. He's been living under her care ever since that day.
In the finale episode "Remembrance of Courage Past", the Cruel Veterinarian tries to do the same to Courage after recognizing him from the past. When Muriel and Eustace attempt to rescue Courage, he decides that he can't allow his operation to be discovered and decides to send Muriel and Eustace into space as well. However, Courage rescues his owners and locks the evil vet inside the rocket, which after T-0, the rocket engines underneath then ignites and the rocket launches, foiling the evil vet's plans and beliefs in the process. Crash landing on a planet, the Cruel Veterinarian finds that all the dogs have survived, including Courage's parents, and his beliefs to turn them into super-dogs have failed. The evil vet is then petrified, as he is dragged off in a net and attacked by the vengeful dogs off-screen for his actions. He is heard screaming during the attack, concluding the episode.
Powers and Skills
Courage is shown doing many unrealistic and impossible feats of a typical cartoon character. This is a concept known as Toonforce, allowing him to perform vast feats that don't follow the laws of physics. However, these seem to be done for comedic effect rather than abilities Courage can actually control.
Perhaps Courage's greatest signature is his scream. Courage can scream so loud that he can break a hole open in a wooden floor large enough to swallow a rouge gallery of his previous foes (Ball of Revenge). In some instances Courage has been shown able to survive underwater and in outer space for prolonged periods of time. Courage's 'super screams' have proven powerful enough to destroy planetary bodies and stars in The Magic Tree of Nowhere.
Courage has been shown morphing his physical body structure many times throughout the show's run. Such as changing into animals, monsters, people, and even changing his physical composition. However, this seems to be just as a form of expression.
Courage has displayed an inhuman amount of resistance to physical pain in many episodes. Such as withstanding an assault from Mecha Courage in Courage vs. Mecha-Courage. Courage is able to take loads of damage and still stand on his feet, seemingly unable to actually be killed. He is also superhumanly strong and fast, such as hopping al the way to Paris as a Kangaroo Monster in The Transplant. And picking up the God Bone (several times his own size) and using it to smash three Dog Skeletons after they assaulted him in Stormy Weather.
Courage has been known to heal from injuries of even colossal (and realistically fatal) proportions in no time. His tongue regrew after he had it ripped off. And injuries he receives are known to simply disappear without explanation.
Courage has been shown pulling large and impossible objects from seemingly thin air.
Courage has many other skills such as cooking, fixing things, survival skills, tracking skills, etc.
- Courage is one of three characters (the others being Muriel and Eustace) to appear in nearly every episode.
- He is also one of seven characters (the others being Muriel, Eustace, Shirley, Dr. Vindaloo, the Computer and Katz) to appear in every season.
- Despite the show's title, Courage is actually the bravest character on the show.
- Courage spoke English quite often in the first season, but from the second season onward, his dialogue became increasingly limited to gibberish, mumbling, and screams, only speaking occasionally or when he really had something to say. According to his voice actor, this was a deliberate decision.
- Courage has many sounds that he's known for, such as his strange laugh at the end of some episodes.
- Courage is the only character (aside from Katz and Le Quack) who ever speaks directly to the audience. The frequency with which he does so (nearly every episode) makes this one of his trademark characteristics.
- During Courage's first flashback in Remembrance of Courage Past, his mother reveals his father's name when she calls him as he was playing with Courage.
- Courage and Muriel are the only characters to be seen in every episode.
- Courage's favorite food is apparently chicken dumplings.
- Courage is good at making shadow puppets as shown in The Hunchback of Nowhere.
- Courage can (somehow) lay 14-Karat golden eggs as shown in Muted Muriel.
- According to Grabstein himself, there was difficulty casting the character; associate producer Risa Neuwirth stated 350 actors auditioned for the role before Grabstein was cast.
Quotes & Catchphrases
- "I have a bad feeling about this."
- "I know I'm not gonna like this."
- "I just know something bad is going to happen."
- "...or my name is (random name)... and it's not!"
- "I've got a bad feeling about this, or my name is 'Stinky Lou Lou'... and thank goodness it's not!"
- "The things I do for love."
- "What have you done with Muriel?"
- "Muriel! I'll save you!"
- "What do I do?! What do I do?!"
- "Oh no...!"