Who is Cole Young in the Mortal Kombat movie?

The brand-new Mortal Kombat motion picture strikes HBO Max and cinema April 23, bringing Scorpion, Sub-Zero, Raiden, and a lots other timeless (and not-so-classic) kombatants back to the cinema. Mortal Kombat, directed by newbie function filmmaker Simon McQuoid, likewise makes a huge swerve: The motion picture presents a totally brand-new initial character to the folklore called Cole Young.

Cole’s intro to the Mortal Kombat franchise was questionable from the start, when his character was exposed in early casting leakages, however he plays a crucial function in the brand-new movie. He successfully changes series veteran Johnny Cage as Mortal Kombat’s audience insert. Like Cage, he’s in over his head, however Cole does not get in a magical multidimensional competition for ego-driven factors. Cole is an unsuccessful blended martial arts fighter who unknowingly discovers himself the target of forces beyond his understanding and need to defend Earth along with Liu Kang, Raiden, Jax, and Sonya Blade.

And, as teased in Mortal Kombat’s trailers, both overtly and discreetly, Cole has connections to series mascot Scorpion. Here’s whatever you require to understand about Cole Young.

Who is Cole Young?

At the start of Mortal Kombat, we discover that Cole Young (played by Lewis Tan) is a past-his-prime Mixed Martial Arts fighter who gets the periodic $200 check by completing in questionable battle cards. He has a partner and child, a killer uppercut, and a birthmark in the shape of the Mortal Kombat dragon logo design on his chest. As exposed in the trailer, unique forces soldier Jax informs Cole the dragon mark he was born with suggests he’s been picked to safeguard Earth (aka Earthrealm) in Mortal Kombat. However Cole doesn’t understand why he’s been picked to combat along with superhuman fighters in the ancient, world-shattering-consequences competition.

[Warning: Spoilers for Mortal Kombat follow.]

Scorpion (Hiroyuki Sanada) appears in a swirl of flame in a still from Mortal Kombat (2021)

Courtesy of Warner Bros. Entertainment

Why is Cole “chosen” for Mortal Kombat?

During the prologue of the film, the man who would become Scorpion, Hanzo Hasashi (Hiroyuki Sanada), battles Bi-Han (Joe Taslim) centuries before the latter would become the ninja known as Sub-Zero. Hasashi’s daughter survives the attack, is rescued by Raiden, and carries on the bloodline. Cole is a descendant of Hasashi, but the two have a blood bond that goes beyond a simple ancestral relationship. In fact, Cole is key to a prophecy that Outworld sorcerer Shang Tsung and Sub-Zero are very, very concerned about. While Cole is not the only hero of Mortal Kombat — this is a true team effort — he earns his place along with the likes of Liu Kang, Sonya Blade, and Jax.

Is Cole Young secretly Johnny Cage?

No.

Is he secretly some other famous Mortal Kombat fighter?

No. (At least not yet. Who knows? Maybe he’ll become Cyrax if they make Mortal Kombat sequels.)

What are Cole Young’s powers?

Cole’s powers — known as arcana in Mortal Kombat — manifest in a life-or-death situation, granting him supernatural body armor and a pair of arm blades. Here’s how Lewis Tan described Cole’s arcana in an interview with Polygon.

“They were described to me by [director Simon McQuoid] as a protection over the heritage that runs through the bloodline of Cole Young,” Tan said. “In the beginning of the movie, if you look carefully at the basket that has great-great-great grandmother was placed in, you can see though the same webbing/cross-hatching that’s on [Cole’s] suit is the same thing that was on that basket. It’s the same design. [It’s] not only the design that saved this baby, but it’s a design that saved his bloodline, and it’s a design that’s physically protecting his body.

“On top of that, he has a blade, similar to the kunai that [Scorpion] has, that can come out of his arm. And he can use that blade and he can swing it around. The weapon’s called a tonfa. But it’s bladed — that’s not usually how they look. So it’s like a spin on that weapon. His arcana is his family, his bloodline, and his identity. And the whole film, he’s searching for that. So when he finally finds it, not only is it the thing that saves his life and his family, but it’s also deeply connected to his heritage and who he is.”

Is Cole a good addition to the movie?

Sure! Not only is a Cole a capable fighter, thanks to actor Tan’s martial arts chops, he’s the solid, human center of the film. He also gets to make the movie’s “Shouldn’t Kombat be spelled with a C?” joke.

“We knew obviously it was a little controversial to add a new character,” Tan told me in an interview. “[But] it’s not really out of line with Mortal Kombat, because they add new characters a lot. But we knew it was going to be a topic that people were going to talk about, so I was willing and ready to take that on and deliver an authenticity with the martial arts and deliver a good emotional performance that could carry the film — and could earn Cole his spot in the Mortal Kombat universe. [We want to] have people not just like the film, but actually be interested in the character, his backstory, how he fights, and who he is.”

Will Cole be in future Mortal Kombat movies?

If they make a sequel, almost assuredly. At the end of the film, we see Cole heading off to Hollywood to find more fighters for the next Mortal Kombat competition, specifically in-fiction actor Johnny Cage, the only character on the original Mortal Kombat roster who doesn’t appear (in the flesh) in the movie.

Will Cole be in future Mortal Kombat games?

It’s possible. Mortal Kombat developer NetherRealm Studios hasn’t announced any plans to bring Cole to Mortal Kombat 11 — and you’d think that, if it planned to, the developer would do so around the release of the Mortal Kombat movie for optimal synergy. But the game studio has also stated that it’s refrained from doing with MK11 right now, even after the release of the After-effects growth. And NetherRealm has actually admired Mortal Kombat’s cinematic past in MK11, so possibly it’ll do something comparable for its present.

Jobber Wiki author Frank Long contributed to this report.