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Frienship

A Friendship is a finishing move introduced in Mortal Kombat II in response to the public controversy surrounding the gruesome Fatality finishing move in the original Mortal Kombat. They also featured in Mortal Kombat 3 and its updates, but were not used again until Mortal Kombat 11, where they were added as part of the "Aftermath" expansion.

Overview

Friendships allowed players to perform various (and highly unlikely) acts of kindness and goodwill towards their helpless opponent instead of killing them after winning the match. This included giving a birthday present, blowing bubbles, painting a picture, ice skating, cooking food and doing a funny dance. To perform a Friendship, when the opponent is defeated, the player must perform a special button combination for their character and have won that round using only High or Low Kick. In Mortal Kombat 3 and its updates, Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 and Mortal Kombat Trilogy, the player had to win the round without using the Block button.

Whenever a Friendship was performed in MKII, the announcer (the voice of Shao Kahn) was heard incredulously muttering, "Friendship. Friendship?" while large, multicolored balloon letters would wiggle on the screen stating the name of the finishing move, sounding like Shao Kahn was reading it out of a script. When Friendships returned in MK3 and its updates, the announcer responded, "Friendship. Friendship, again?" in disbelief that such a thing would reappear in another game.

Cage

Johnny Cage's Friendship.

It is generally accepted that the introduction of Friendships to the Mortal Kombat series was intended to mock the parental outcry in 1992 over the first game's violent content, similar to Babalities. However, they were dropped from later games as controversy diminished and was redirected to newer games, and the series returned to its dark roots from Mortal Kombat 4 onward. They appeared in Mortal Kombat II, Mortal Kombat 3, Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3Mortal Kombat Trilogy and Mortal Kombat 11.

List of Friendships

  • Baraka:
    • MKII, MKT: Gives his opponent a birthday gift.
    • MK11: Throws a cake into the air and slices it. One piece falls on his head.
  • Cassie Cage
    • MK11: Takes some selfies with her phone.
  • Johnny Cage:
    • MKII, MKT: Gives an autographed photo, which reads "To my best fan! Cage." This Friendship found its way into the first Mortal Kombat movie in a scene where an autographed photo signed by Cage lands near Scorpion's remains following their battle. In MK 2011, this becomes part of his Babality. In MKX, this is Johnny's victory screen if a finishing move is not performed. In MK11, this is one of Johnny's round win taunts.
    • MK11: Wearing a top hat and cane, does a vaudeville dance as "Give My Regards to Broadway" plays in the background. 
  • Cetrion:
    • MK11: Grows a tree and swings on its vines.
  • Classic Sub-Zero:
    • MKT: Scares the opponent with a snowman in a jack-in-the-box.
    • MKT (N64): Covers himself up in a snowman.
  • Cyrax:
  • D'Vorah:
    • MK11: Emerges from a cocoon with butterfly wings.
  • Ermac:
    • MKT: Levitates the opponent who then transforms into a rabbit.
    • MKADV: Scares the opponent with a monitor in a jack-in-the-box.
  • Erron Black:
    • MK11: Shoots gallery ducks.
  • Frost:
    • MK11: Freezes the ground and figure skates on it.
  • Fujin:
    • MK11: Flies a Raiden kite. Notably, a different song plays than normal.
  • Geras:
    • MK11: Builds a sand castle.
  • Jacqui Briggs:
    • MK11: Punches an inflatable Kronika punching bag.
  • Jade:
    • UMK3, MKT: Pogo-jumps with her staff.
    • MK11: Hits a Shao Kahn piñata with her staff and eats the candy that falls out.
  • Jax:
    • MKII, MKT: Cuts out some paper origami dolls.
    • MK3, UMK3, MKT: Skips rope.
    • MK11: Plays a saxophone. This is apparently a parody of the Epic Sax Guy internet memes aka "saxrolling".
  • The Joker:
    • MK11: Prepares to shoot the opponent with a revolver but is hit on the back of his head with a Batarang. Complains at Batman before replacing the revolver with balloons.
  • Kabal:
    • MK3, UMK3, MKT: Uses one of his hookswords to roast a marshmallow.
    • MK11: Plays a xylophone.
  • Kano:
    • MK3, UMK3, MKT: Blows a bubble with gum, and it pops on his face.
    • MK11: Starts a cook out (notably cooking blood sausage and shrimp on the barbie, a reference to his Australian heritage), using his eye laser to ignite the grill.
  • Kitana:
    • MKII: Gives the opponent a birthday cake.
    • UMK3, MKT: Blows bubbles at the opponent.
    • MK11: Plays patty cake with Mileena and then hugs her.
  • Kollector:
    • MK11: Pulls out many instruments, performing as a one Naknada band.
  • Kotal Kahn:
    • MK11: Sits on a chair, enjoying the sun with a folding mirror. 
  • Kung Lao:
    • MKII, MKT: Pulls a rabbit out of his hat.
    • MK3, UMK3, MKT: Throws his hat off-screen like a Frisbee, while a dog follows it to fetch, only for Kung Lao to wince and shake his head sadly after a pained whine is heard.
    • MK11: Sets up a wooden train set around his hat for him to play.
  • Liu Kang:
    • MKII, MK11: Breaks out into a disco dance.
    • MK3, UMK3, MKT: Makes a shadow puppet of the MK dragon symbol.
  • Mileena:
    • MKII: Waters the ground near her feet to grow a flower
    • UMK3, MKT: Looks at her unmasked face at a mirror, which shatters.
  • Nightwolf:
    • MK3, UMK3, MKT: Performs a Raiden transformation, as a Mortal Kombat II arcade falls from the sky behind him (accompanied by the caption "I've never seen a Kano transformation" or "No, but I can do a Raiden transformation").
    • MKT N64 version: Juggles tomahawks.
    • MK11: Has Kiba jump through a flaming hoop.  Afterwards, a falcon rests on his arm, while Komo walks in on a circus ball.
  • Noob Saibot:
    • MKT: Goes bowling, getting a split.
    • MK11: Summons two more shadow clones, who proceed to play jump rope with Noob Saibot.
  • Raiden:
    • MKII, MKT: Summons an infant version of himself called "Kidd Thunder". It was mentioned in the MK Card Games by BradyGames that he is Raiden's "favorite nephew".
    • MK11: Performs a laser light show with Kidd Thunder. A direct reference to a video by Light Balance.
  • Rain:
    • MKT: Summons raindrops, causes flowers are grown.
    • MKADV: Opens an umbrella and floats away.
  • Reptile:
    • MKII: Produces a Reptile doll, advertising it with the message "Buy a Reptile doll".
    • UMK3, MKT: Scares the opponent with a snake in a jack-in-the-box.
  • RoboCop:
    • MK11: Stops and performs a robot dance wearing an OCP chain, with a cassette player placed on the ground playing dance music. A filter is applied to the camera during the Friendship to give it a VHS quality look.
  • Scorpion:
    • MKII: Produces a Scorpion doll, advertising it with the message "Buy a Scorpion doll".
    • UMK3, MKT: Scares the opponent with a skull in a jack-in-the-box.
    • MK11: Uses his spear to pull a giant teddy bear towards himself, hugging it.
  • Sektor:
    • MK3, UMK3, MKT: Hits a strength testing pole with a mallet, causing the bell to ring.
  • Shang Tsung:
    • MKII, MK11: Makes a rainbow with his hands.
    • MK3, UMK3, MKT: Turns into the main character of the retro game Joust.
  • Shao Kahn:
    • MK11: Hits a strength testing pole with his hammer, breaking the bell.
  • Sheeva:
    • MK3, UMK3, MKT: Spins plates on sticks held with each of her hands.
    • MK11: Plays a glass harp with each of her hands. 
  • Skarlet:
    • MK11: Creates a painting in blood of a stick figure. Her name is signed in the corner.
  • Sindel:
    • MK3, UMK3, MKT: Kicks a football and states "That was fun!".
    • MK11: Screams at a wine glass, which shatters the screen, and drinks the wine inside. She then throws the glass away, breaking it.
  • Smoke (Robot):
    • MK3, UMK3, MKT: Blows a loud horn produced from his chestplate.
  • Smoke (Human):
    • UMK3: Scares the opponent with a skull in a jack-in-the-box. It was in fact a version of Scorpion in gray.
    • MKT: A sign that reads "No Smoking" falls from the sky, causing his own smoke emission to cease.
  • Sonya:
    • MK3: Waves her arms back-and-forth.
    • UMK3, MKT: A row of flowers grow from the ground near her feet.
    • MK11: Plays fetch with her robot; it returns with a fainting Tarkatan.
  • Spawn:
    • MK11: Lies in a hammock made from his cape, reading a romance novel titled Hellish Desires.
  • Stryker:
    • MK3, UMK3: Blows his whistle and pulls out a school crossing stop sign and all the characters (including a clone of himself) run across the screen.
    • MKT: Blows his whistle and pulls out a school crossing stop sign and all the ninjas (male, female and cyborg) run across.
    • MKT N16: Blows his whistle and pulls out a school crossing stop sign and a lot of dogs run across the screen.
    • MKT N46: Blows his whistle and pulls out a school crossing stop sign and a dog pulling a small red wagon passes through holding baby versions of Unmasked Sub-Zero, Sindel, and Jax.
  • Sub-Zero:
    • MKII: Produces a Sub-Zero doll, advertising it with the message "Buy a Sub-Zero doll".
    • MK3, UMK3, MKT: Creates a snowman.
    • MK11: Runs off-screen and returns riding an ice cream cart. He then creates a popsicle.
  • The Terminator:
    • MK11: Stands on a moving motorcycle with arms outstretched. Passing the camera, smiles and gives a thumbs-up. Rides back and forth in various poses.

References

They make a quasi-cameo in Mortal Kombat: Deception's Puzzle Kombat, where the characters sometimes hand their foe an exploding gift. This partially mimics Baraka's Friendship in the regular Mortal Kombat games, with the exception that the "gifts" are offered during the fight, instead of after the fight is decided, and they explode. Nightwolf also does his Nintendo 64 Mortal Kombat Trilogy Friendship as he juggles his tomahawks.

In Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks, one of Kung Lao's Fatalities refers to his Mortal Kombat II Friendship; after he pulls the rabbit out of his hat, the opponent makes a gesture as if not wanting it. Kung Lao then proceeds to smack the opponent to bits with the rabbit itself. He also has a hidden variation of this Fatality not displayed in the ingame Fatality list where he tosses the rabbit to the opponent, which then proceeds to savagely assault them.

Friendship is referenced in Mortal Kombat X in the form of a social networking site (a parody of Facebook), it only makes an appearance in Cassie's second fatality where she uploads a selfie of her jawless victim on the website with comments about it from different characters.

In a Mortal Kombat 11 pre-fight interaction, Kung Lao requests Johnny Cage to stop trying to get his hat, with Johnny asking if rabbits are inside of it or not; Kung Lao responds that "only [his] friends know for sure", referencing his Friendship from Mortal Kombat II. The Joker's first fatality has him handing over a large cake to his opponent, and the words FRIENDSHIP appear as balloons on a sign in the background before the cake explodes and he shoots them to pieces. The popped balloons then reveal the word FATALITY.

Trivia

  • Via Twitter, Ed Boon had hinted at the inclusion of Friendships in Mortal Kombat (2011), however they were not released with the game.
  • In Mortal Kombat 11, there are also easy friendships, much like an easy fatality.

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