Leon Scott. Kennedy was a police academy cadet who became intrigued by a series of grizzly murders that occurred in Raccoon City. Upon graduating from the police academy, Leon quickly applied for a position at the Raccoon City Police Department, which was soon accepted due to his high test scores.
Leon's first day as a member of Raccoon City's finest would also be his last, as upon reaching the city Leon became embroiled in what would later became known as The Raccoon City Incident.
Leon made his first appearance in the Capcom video game Resident Evil 2, released in 1998 on the PlayStation One. He was created by Hideki Kamiya and Noboru Sugimura. He was voiced by Paul Haddad in Resident Evil 2, and by Paul Mercier in Resident Evil 4, Resident Evil: The Dark-side chronicles, and in the full length CG animated film Resident Evil: Degeneration. Paul Mercier is set to reprise the role in Degeneration's sequel titled Damnation, set for a 2012 release. Leon also bears a striking resemblance to Dante, the protagonist of the Devil May Cry franchise which Capcom also created.
Leon was created to be the opposite of Chris Redfield protagonist of the original Resident evil game. Hideki Kamiya felt that Chris was the "blunt, tough-guy type" and wanted to create a character with weakness. In the original draft of Resident Evil 2, which was titled Resident Evil 1.5, Leon was written as a veteran police officer, but was changed into a rookie after the creators opted for a re-write, and to distinguish his character from Chris Redfield. Leon has perhaps evolved most as a character in the franchise, from a slightly naive rookie cop in Resident Evil 2, into a confident and highly trained government agent in Resident Evil 4.
Major Story Arcs
The Raccoon City Incident (Resident Evil 2)
Leon Scott Kennedy was driving into town and couldn't help but notice how deserted it appeared. Finding a body in the road Leon pulled over to investigate only to be almost immediately swarmed by the T-Virus infected towns people. Leon drew his weapon and began unloading into the group, shooting vital points in the bodies but the townspeople kept coming. Ducking into an alley he came face to face with an actual living person in the form of Claire Redfield, a young college girl searching for her brother. Leon dispatched a zombie that was closing in on her by firing a round through it's head. The zombie dropped immediately. Shortly after introducing themselves to one another they are immediately separated due to a fuel tanker plowing into their car.
Battling their way (separately) to the Police Station, Leon comes across a young Asian woman named Ada Wong who is searching for her boyfriend. Leon is immediately smitten with her but Ada does not pay much attention to the young man. Ada disappears to follow her own leads as she searches for clues to John's whereabouts and to a way out of the Police Station. As the two interact Leon grows to care for Ada, and despite herself and her true agenda, Ada begins to reciprocate those feelings. After an encounter with Annette Birkin, Leon learns the truth about Ada and why she is really in Raccoon City. Ada is an industrial spy for a rival pharmaceutical company. Unknown to anyone (for some time that is) she is working directly for Albert Wesker, the supposedly dead S.T.A.R.S. leader and former Umbrella researcher. Ada unprofessionally risks her life to save Leon from a T-102 known as Mr. X that is hunting for the G-Virus sample that was stored in Sherry Birkin's locket. Leon leaves the (presumably) dead Ada and fights his way to the emergency exit of the underground Umbrella Facility. He barely survives a second encounter with the final form of William Bikin's G-Virus Monster. However the presence of the monster on-board the train triggers a bio-hazard warning and the train begins its self destruct sequence. Leon, Claire and Sherry manage to escape just as the train explodes killing Birkin once and for all.
Fight Against Umbrella
In the aftermath of Raccoon City's destruction, Claire leaves Sherry in Leon's care as she travels to Europe in search of her brother Chris Redfield. Leon becomes Sherry's temporary guardian until the two are apprehended by US Government agents seeking answers about the disaster and Umbrella's involvement. Leon turns Sherry over to the government's care as he is given the opportunity to became a special field agent, he reluctantly agrees. Leon underwent rigorous training, and was transformed into a rookie cop into a highly trained special agent, particularly excelled in knife combat. During his training, Leon began his own investigation into Umbrella, and used his position to gather information for a secret anti-umbrella movement. During this time Leon sent a friend of his, Detective Ark Thompson, to investigate a suspected umbrella research facility on Sheena Island. Leon was also responsible for tipping off Chris Redfield, who had gone into hiding after the Raccoon incident, about the location of his sister Claire Redfield, who had been captured by Umbrella operatives in France, and had been forcefully taken to a remote Umbrella facility on Rockfort Island, where she was being held captive.
After receiving Intel that a former Umbrella scientist had contacted a notorious drug lord named Javier Hidalgo, Leon is sent to a small town in South America, to capture Javier. Due to the delicate nature of the mission, a highly experienced operative named Jack Krauser was selected as Leon's partner. Upon entering the village, the two became trapped in the center of a T-Virus outbreak, which confirmed the involvement of the Umbrella researcher. The two were forced to fight their way through swarms of zombies, and eventually came across a young women called Manuela, who appeared to be the only survivor of the village, she later turned out to be Javier's daughter. Leon and Krauser became closer during the ordeal and Leon began opening up to Krauser, telling him of his life and experiences in Raccoon City, this conversation would later have profound consequences for both of them. The two eventually defeat Javier, with the help of Manuela, who is then taken into government protection. Krauser sustained a serious injury during the mission and the two were unable to continue as partners. Krauser was discharged from active service after the mission, later that year Leon was informed that his former partner had died in a helicopter crash.
Los Illuminados (Resident Evil 4)
Six years after the Raccoon City Incident, a 27 year old Leon is a government agent under the direct control of the President of the United States. Leon is assigned a new job of protecting the President's family, however, mere days before he begins this duty the president's daughter Ashley Graham is kidnapped. Intelligence suggested that she had been taken to a rural part of Spain, and Leon was soon dispatched alone to find her. Leon is escorted by two Spanish police officers to a remote village near where an unconfirmed sighting of Ashley had been reported. Leon is dropped at the outskirts of the village and proceeds on foot, the police officers remain with the car, comically saying they don't want to get any parking tickets. Leon quickly reaches a run down cabin, and upon entering is attacked by a disorientated man who refused to back down, Leon is forced to kill him. The man eerily reminded Leon of the T-virus infected zombies of Raccoon city. Outside Leon hears witnesses several villagers using a truck to ram the police officers in their squad car of a cliff into the raging river below, they soon turn on Leon in the strange single minded attack attributed to the zombies encountered in Raccoon city, however, Leon notes that they seem to have lost none of their physical maneuverability and despite their disheveled state, their flesh didn't seem to be rotting, which is a effect of the T-virus.
A 28 year old Leon was selected by the president to take charge of the S.R.T. team due to his experience with the t-Virus. Under his leadership and advice, they learned how to effectively kill the zombies and rescued five survivors, including Claire Redfield.
After saving them, Leon was involved in the fight with Curtis Miller, the Marines and Angela Miller at WilPharma. He was able to save Angela and kill the G-virus-infected Curtis Miller. At the end, he, Claire and Angela exposed Frederic Downing for escaping Raccoon City with the "T" and G-virus samples, the t-Virus incident at the airport, and setting a time bomb in the WilPharma building in order to secretly sell the last of the G-virus data, t-Virus along with its vaccine, and the G-virus.
As the incident came to a close, Leon was called in for yet another mission. He and Claire parted ways, with the two hoping that they will each meet again someday under far more "normal" circumstances.
Tall Oaks Incident (Resident Evil 6)
About a decade and a half after the Raccoon City incident, another bio-terrorism attack occurs in Tall Oaks. Adam Benford, friend to Leon and president of the United States, becomes infected and attacks the agent Helena Harper, forcing him to shoot him. Leon starts up an uneasy partnership with her. Leon and Helena travel through Ivy University and the city where they combat the outbreak as they head towards the Tall Oaks Cathedral upon Helena's suggestion as he states she is responsible for this and will explain everything to Leon. In the cathedral, they find an underground laboratory where more zombies and mutated creatures are. They stumble upon a video tape of a woman bursting from a cocoon with the tape dubbed "happy birthday, Ada Wong" who turns out to be a scientist who turned herself into an Ada lookalike. As they go deeper into the cathedral, Helena comes clean about helping Derek Simmons, the national security adviser, who is behind everything and she lead Leon down there to help find her sister too.
They manage to find Helena's sister, Deborah, but she eventually turns into a B.O.W. Leon and Helena also run into Ada Wong whom helps them defeat the mutated Deborah. As the two are warned by Simmons himself that they top suspects for the president's death, which is part of his plan, Tall Oaks is destroyed, including the evidence against Simmons. Leon gets Hunnigan to fake his and Helena's deaths so they can head to Lanshiang, China to stop Simmons. They encounter Sherry Birkin and Jake Muller, Wesker's son, and help they fight a powerful B.O.W named Ustanak. Sherry gives Leon the coordinates to Simmons' meeting. They run into the fake Ada Wong, who unbeknownst to them is the fake. She leads them into a building where they encounter Chris Redfield and his partner Piers Nivans. Leon and Chris have a brief scuffle when he tries to shoot Ada, her being a suscpect and all. Leon convinces Chris Simmons is behind everything and that Chris should go follow "Ada" while Leon handles Simmons.
They find Simmons but he is ambushed by a J'avo and injected with the enhanced C-Virus which transforms him into a dog like B.O.W.. They seemingly defeat Simmons but when they make it through virus bombed city, Simmons returns and begins another fight. As they head towards the roof of a skyscraper, Leon sees Simmons attacking Ada and once again the duo is forced to save Ada and defeat Simmons. Simmons continues to evolve and add more bio-mass to his body. Leon uses a lightning rod to finally have a storm weaken Simmons and the two run towards a helicopter left by Ada and inside was her compact mirror and evidence to clear their names. Simmons returns again and Leon uses the rocket launcher left by Ada to defeat Simmons once as for all as he falls to his death by getting speared on a pillar. Leon and Helena leave China. Leon and Helena visit a grave set up for Deborah where Helena is ready to take consequences for her actions of helping Simmons but Leon hands her a gun solidifying their partnership and in return Helena throws him Ada Wong's compact mirror so he can give it to her the next time they meet.
Skills and Abilities
Leon possesses no superhuman powers, but is at the peak of physical and mental fitness. His is extremely agile and can be seen performing a verity of flips, rolls, and other complicated maneuvers with practiced ease. He possesses a high level of stamina and endurance, capable of strenuous activity for long periods of time without rest. He is also able to stay awake for days at a time and still retain a high level of focus and awareness. Thanks to his training as a police officer and then a government agent, Leon is well versed in the use of most firearms and is an extremely capable combatant, excelling in the use of a knife. Leon also doesn't smoke, favoring chewing gum instead.
- Height - 5 ft 10 in
- Weight - 155 lb
- Eyes - Green
- Hair - Dirty Blonde
- Blood Type - A
- Ethnicity - Caucasian
- Occupation - Raccoon City Police Officer, Secret Service
Leon wears a full-body R.P.D. uniform in Resident Evil 2 with a vest, in contrast to other officers in the game who wear summer uniforms. This outfit is predominantly different shades of blue. He has two alternate costumes to wear in the game that changes his shooting style with the Handgun. The first is a casual outfit consisting of a leather jacket with a picture of a skull on the back and jeans, while the second costume is a tank top with cargo pants and an R.P.D. cap. The Nintendo 64 version replaced these costumes with a S.T.A.R.S. uniform and another consisting of camouflage pants with T-shirt, leather vest and sunglasses.
In Resident Evil 4, Leon wears a short-sleeved black 5.11 shirt, blue 5.11 pants, black Magnum combat boots, and a brown B3 bomber jacket. However, he loses the jacket early in the game, much to the chagrin of players who liked its look. When playing Ada's scenario Separate Ways, you do however learn the previously unknown fate of the jacket; it was stolen by a Ganado when Leon and Luis were captured at the end of Chapter 1-1. He sports a variety of equipment and gear around his waist, including a attaché case on the small of his back, double pistol mag pouches, navigation light, rappel, and radio pouch. A drop leg holster is strapped to his thigh, and he also wears a brown leather shoulder holster. Later in the game, the player has the option of acquiring the Tactical Vest, which puts a black assault vest and assorted gear on over Leon's standard outfit, making him look quite intimidating as well as dramatically increasing his constitution. The vest reduces damage by 30% as well.
After the player beats the game for the first time, they unlock Leon's classic R.P.D. uniform from Resident Evil 2, albeit updated. This updated uniform was used again in Darkside Chronicles for "Memories of a Lost City".
In the PlayStation 2 and Wii ports of RE 4, he is given a classic mafia-style outfit that is unlocked along with the Chicago Typewriter after the player clears the "Separate Ways" scenario. Since the typewriter has infinite ammo, Leon will simply tilt his hat when the reload button is pushed and if the player hits reload four times, Leon will throw his hat in the air and catch it. Wearing the Mafia costume will change Leon's pose on the attaché case screen while the typewriter is equipped and will change the typewriter's magazine from a standard box magazine to a drum magazine. The Mafia outfit also changes the look of Leon's knife. Instead of a, Combat Knife it becomes a switch-blade to complete the authentic criminal motif. This change is purely cosmetic, and does not affect the performance of the knife at all.
Leon's Degeneration attire is similar to that of his outfit from RE 4, albeit with a new, leather jacket, lighter gray "5.11" shirt, and different-coloured pants.
In Resident Evil 6, Leon is wearing clothes of a civilian nature in comparison to his tactical attire from RE 4. He sports a dark grey or black leather jacket with white stripes on the sleeves, a black buttoned shirt, and a red t-shirt beneath that. His pants are a light grey, and he wears similar shoes to his RE 4 incarnation. Leon's hair is a bit longer and messier in RE 6.
Weapons and Equipment
Leon uses a wide verity of weapons throughout the series.
Resident Evil 2
In the earlier games, weapons and ammunition are in short supply, this is to create a more intense survivalist experience throughout the game. However, Leon still comes across a wide range of weapons including:
A powerful handgun found in the game, however, ammo is always in short supply. In the novelization of the game written by S.D. Perry, it is revealed this gun is given as a present to Leon by his Father, who was also a police officer.
Standard weapon Leon begins the game with. Deals low damage, only used as a last resort.
Leon's starting Weapon. Capable of killing zombies with several shots, although, not very effective against more powerful enemies such as the Licker.
Found in the game, very powerful and is able to be upgraded.
Found in William Birkin's lab, it is useful for destroying t-virus infected plants, but has no spare ammo.
Resident Evil 4
In this game Leon uses the widest verity of Weapons in any Resident Evil game, all can be upgraded to various degrees to increase power and reload speed. They Include:
Leon's starting weapon in the game. While initially not very powerful, it can be upgraded for very little money and when at maximum it has the highest ammo capacity of any handgun in the game and also the fastest reload speed.
Can be both found and bought in the game. Powerful at close range, but very noneffective at medium to long range. This is the first shotgun available in the game.
High rate of fire, good for fighting off multiple attacking enemies.
Powerful rifle, with adjustable zoom. Best for head-shots.
Resident Evil 6
Leon's starting weapon. It is a relatively weak pistol at first, but highly accurate and capable of dual wield capabilities.
Leon's default knife in the game.
A powerful shotgun capable of hitting a few enemies in one shot burst.
A powerful and accurate sniper rifle with a zoom function.
An assault rifle that is highly accurate and extremely powerful.
Leon's strongest pistol and strongest gun in a single shot. The gun has a large recoil and slow fire time.
Leon S. Kennedy has become a favourite amongst fans of the franchise. He has appeared in nearly all related media formats and is set to return as the protagonist of the full CGI film Resident Evil: Damnation 2012.
Leon S. Kennedy makes his first appearance in Resident Evil 2 released in 1998, on the Playstation One, Nintendo 64, Dreamcast, Gamecube, and is set to be re-released on the Playstation Network in 2010. Leon is one of two playable characters in the game, the other being Claire Redfield.
Leon does not appear in this game but is mentioned by name at the end where it is revealed he has become a government agent.
Leon appears as a playable character along with Barry Burton, the game was released on the Game Boy Color on 14th December 2001. However, this game is not considered cannon.
Set six years after Resident Evil 2, Leon returns as the main character. The game was highly praised by critics and remains one of the best games in the series. Released in 2005 the game was nominated for game of the year, and was released on all major platforms.
- Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles
Exclusive for the Nintendo wii, it was released on the 17th and 19th November 2009. Leon returns as a playable character, the game chronicles the events of previous games RE2 and RE: Code Veronica, it also features all new scenarios created for the game, and is played in the First person rail shooter style.
Set almost 15 years after the original Raccoon City incident, Leon reprises a role as a playable character in one of three campaigns with his new partner Helena Harper. The game is available on the Playstation3 and Xbox 360 system consoles.
- Resident Evil: Apocalypse
Live action film starring Mila Jovovich, Leon doesn't appear in the live action film series, but is mentioned in passing as the deceased partner of Jill Valentine.
- Resident Evil: Degeneration
Leon stars in the full length CGI film. The film was released in the UK on October 18th, 2008 and deals with special agent Leon S. Kennedy reuniting with Claire Redfield to stop a T-Virus outbreak in an airport. Paul Mercier returns as the voice of Leon.
Sequel to Degeneration, will again feature Leon as the main character. Set for a 2012 release, part of the story is said to be set in Russia, with rumors that Chris Redfield will make an appearence, if true this will be the first time the two lead male characters of the franchise have appeared together.
Pocket Star Books have published seven novels set in the Resident Evil universe, all of which have been written by author S.D. Perry, with Leon being the main character in two of the books and makes a brief appearence in Code Veronica.
- Resident Evil: Zero Hour - This book is a novelization of the video game of the same name, Leon doesn't appear.
- Resident Evil: The Umbrella Conspiracy - Novelization of the original game, which Leon doesn't appear in.
- Resident Evil: Caliban Cove - An all original novel set in the RE universe, Leon doesn't appear.
- Resident Evil: City Of The Dead - A novelization of the video game RE2, follows Leon and Claire's POV.
- Resident Evil: Underworld - An all original novel featuring Leon, Claire, Rebecca Chambers, and many more.
- Resident Evil: Nemesis - Novelization of the video game RE3, features Jill Valentine, Leon doesn't appear.
- Resident Evil: Code Veronica - Novelization of the video game of the same name, Leon appears briefly.
Resident Evil Deck Building Game
A card game based on the Resident Evil franchise, features cards dedicated to every character to have appeared in the RE universe, including Leon.