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Franklin Delano Donut

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This article is about the original character. You may be looking for the Epsilon created double.

Donut in Valhalla
Name: Donut
Affiliation(s): Red Team
First Appearance: The Rookies
Armor Color(s): Pink (with Lavender detail in Recreation),
Occupation(s): Red Team Private
Weapon(s): Battle Rifle, Magnum, SMG
Voice Actor(s): Dan Godwin
"It's not pink, it's light-ish red!"
—Donut referring to his armor

Private Franklin Delano Donut is a main character in the science fiction machinima comic series Red vs. Blue, created by Rooster Teeth Productions. Voiced by Dan Godwin, Donut first appears in Episode 3 of Season 1 as a new recruit, whose garrulous personality tends to annoy other members of the Blood Gulch Red Team, a group of soldiers engaged in a futuristic civil war against the Blue Team.

Rooster Teeth had a plan for the character from the outset. In the multiplayer games of the Halo video game series, which was used to film Red vs. Blue, human characters wear futuristic MJOLNIR battle armor. In changing Donut's armor to pink in the latter part of Season 1, the producers made his armor color, gender, and sexual orientation a running gag, and fully developed his personality during Season 2. Godwin ad-libbed some of Donut's lines, to the approval of other Rooster Teeth personnel. In some scenes, the filming was adapted to complement Godwin's interpretation of the script. Early in season 1, fans reacted well to Donut; as a result, Burnie Burns, the main writer for Red vs. Blue, focused the storyline on Donut and Caboose (Joel Heyman), the Blue Team's rookie.

Role in Plot

Life at Blood Gulch

Episode 3

Donut as he first arrives in Blood Gulch.

Donut is alluded to indirectly in Episode 2, when Sarge (Matt Hullum), the leader of the Red Team, tells his subordinates that a "new recruit will be here within the week." The next episode introduces Donut, who appears wearing "standard-issue" red armor. Grif (Geoff Ramsey) and Simmons (Gustavo Sorola), his new teammates, immediately send him on a fool's errand for elbow grease and "headlight fluid."[1] According to Nick Werner, who noted the contrast between Donut and the other characters in his review of this episode, "seeing such a serious and cocky young recruit being thrown in with the cynical, lazy, and pretty much bored pair of Simmons and Grif was wonderful."[2] On his way, Donut mistakes the Blue Base for a store and takes the Blue flag in order to avoid returning empty-handed. In response, the Blues attempt to retrieve the flag from Donut (who at the time was thought to be Sarge due his armor color), but are foiled by Grif and Simmons. The Reds then hold off the Blue's long enough for the now very confused Donut to get back to Red Base with the flag. After the Reds won the battle, the Blues retreat and call Command for help. Blue Command hires Tex who is then sent in by the Blues to retrieve the flag and take care of the Reds.
Donut S1

Donut in his pink armor for the first time.

During the her surprise attack on Red Base, Donut is incapacitated by a well placed plasma grenade and is rushed to command for surgery. When Donut returns from Red Command in Episode 16, he appears in pink armor, which he insists is 'lightish red'. The change in armor color attracts attention from both teams. When Tex attacks the Red Base a second time, in Episode 19, Donut miraculously manages to kill her with a plasma grenade, in revenge for her previous attack.[1] According to Wilma Jandoc, who reviewed Red vs. Blue for the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, Donut's personality is developed more thoroughly as season 2 progresses, and he begins to act less sane.[3] Donut eventually does call his armor "pink" in Episode 30. Later, in Episode 36, he pretends to be a secret agent named "Double-O Donut".

Screen shot 2010-11-26 at 1.13.31 AM

Donut and Caboose playing Truth or Dare.

At the end of Season 2, each team leaves one member behind to keep guard while the others pursue their common enemy, Doc/O'Malley (Joel Heyman, Matt Hullum). In what he considers an imbalance, Donut is left with Sheila (Yomary Cruz), the Blue Team's tank. After most of the other Reds and Blues teleport out of Blood Gulch, Tex, who, after returning as a ghost, had suddenly disappeared at the end of Episode 33, returns to the gulch and recognizes Donut as her killer, thus ending the season with a cliffhanger.[4]

In the Future

Donut in Season 3

"Written and directed by Franklin Donut."

In Season 3, Donut eventually joins everyone on Sidewinder to confront O'Malley. However, a bomb blasts most of the characters forward in time. In Episode 53, Donut distracts the Blues with a convoluted story so that the Reds can discreetly investigate a distress signal. When they leave Donut behind in pursuit of this signal, Donut manages to steal a hovercraft dubbed "The Motorcycle" from O'Malley and rejoin them.[5]

Return to Blood Gulch

Donut, Simmons, and Church with knocked out Sarge and Grif

In Season 4, Donut replaces Simmons as Sarge's right-hand man when Sarge declares Simmons insane for insisting that Sheila still roams the gulch in the future. In a cliffhanger at the end of the season, Episode 77, a large ship drops into the gulch and lands on top of Donut.[6] {C}Donut plays only a minor role in Season 5. He does not appear until Episode 81 where it is revealed that the impact forced him into a previously unseen underground cavern, where he finds two armored bodies, one cobalt and the other black, and decides to wait. In Episode 88, he finds Sarge in the cavern and helps him find Simmons after Sarge makes contact with him. Later, he gives Sarge the idea to take over the Blue Base after witnessing the Blues infiltrating their own base. Sarge announces a plan involving Donut as a grenadier.

Motorcycle Season 04

"Look I wanna show you guys the bunny hop I was working on!"

In the first ending of Episode 100, Donut kills Sister by hitting her with the Ghost. He is then killed when Caboose shoots the Ghost with the rocket launcher, but the Ghost lands on Caboose leaving no survivors, and Caboose having the last line in the ending, saying 'son of a bitch'. In the second ending, Donut, along with the rest of the characters is revealed as an anonymous player in a Halo multiplayer lobby, and openly regrets his decision for choosing pink armor. Donut is not featured prominently in the third ending and is only shown standing next to Sarge as he reveals his new ATV. Donut was never seen in Reconstruction, and the only mention of him in the series were Sarge commenting in Chapter 9 that he, "can't get Donut" and by Grif in Reconstruction Chapter 14 when he says while in the tank "All right whose hand was that? Is Donut in here?".



Donut being debriefed.

After his employment at Blood Gulch, Donut was interviewed by the Counselor and asked a routine group of questions. When most of Donut's answers make little or no sense, the Counsellor cuts short the interview and redeploys him. At his new base, Donut finds a message from Tucker insisting that he needs Church immediately. Donut then sets out to find the new location of the Blue and Red forces and relay the message.

Comatose State

He reappears in Relocated Part 4, where he gave Grif a cryptic warning to help Tucker at "the sand", and shortly after he fell unconscious. In the Recreation Trailer, Grif declared that Donut has been in a comatose state for three days. However, Grif also said "How can I tell how long a day is? The sun never sets around here" which means his timeline is questionable. In Recreation Chapter 2, Donut's coma ended.

Current State

Caboose & Donut
In Free Refills, Donut appears in a comatose state. Grif and Sarge went down to the holo-room with Simmons for approximately five minutes and when they returned they had a small staff meeting and noticed Donut was gone. Donut then appeared in the Blue Base with Caboose, where Caboose was telling Epsilon about the past adventures he had in Blood Gulch.

In Recreation Chapter 3, Donut tells Caboose that he needs to deliver a message to Church. Caboose tries to explain the events of Reconstruction, which surprises Donut. Donut then tells Caboose that Tucker needs help, saying that Tucker is "in the sand" before passing out. He awakens after Caboose steps on his hand after Caboose's conversation with the Red Team.

In Recreation Chapter 4, Donut explains his entire situation to Caboose, including his redeployment, and asks if Agent Washington can help with the situation just like how Washington helped Caboose. After Epsilon talks to Caboose, the Reds catch him in the holo-room. Caboose tells the Reds that he wants to find Tucker. Grif and Sarge decide to go with him to help find Tucker, while Donut, Simmons, and Lopez stay behind in Valhalla.

Recreation 12.

Donut meets the Meta.

Later, Donut gives Grif the coordinates to the Sandtrap. Since Sarge is gone, Simmons decides to blow-up Blue Base. When Simmons takes too long trying to blow up Blue Base, Donut decides to go check on him.

Donut finds Simmons staring at the items Caboose collected in Blue Base. Donut tells Simmons that Caboose has Epsilon, which causes Simmons to go frantic because Caboose was supposed to turn it in in exchange for their new bases. When Simmons can't contact Sarge by radio, he decides he has to go find them, leaving Donut at Blue Base. Lopez builds Simmons mongooses for transportation, and before he goes, Simmons goes back to Donut.

Donut is cleaning the Blue Base when The Meta walks in. Donut mistakes him for a new "Blue Team" soldier. The Meta tries several times to kill Donut, but Donut avoids his attacks by dumb luck, and thinks the Meta is trying to help him. When Simmons drives to Blue Base, Donut tells him the "the Blues have a new soldier." Simmons sees the Meta and yells as he runs away, leaving Donut alone with Meta.

Recreation 16
After the Meta chases Simmons back to Red Base, Donut reappears in the base acting casually saying that he didn't know who the Meta was and thought that the Meta was a friend of Simmons. After Simmons explains what the Meta is, Donut, Simmons, and Lopez plan to escape with a vehicle. The trio then makes a run across Valhalla towards the Blue Base. When the Reds find the Meta's vehicle, they find that the starter has been removed. The Meta sees them and begins to attack until Agent Washington tells him to stand down. Washington asks the Reds where Epsilon is, and when they don't answer, Washington shoots Lopez in the head and Donut in the chest. Donut then collapses to the ground and passes out. Simmons frantically yells at Donut to breathe and wake up.

Recovery Mode

Donut S8

Donut recovered.

By the time of Red vs. Blue: Revelation, Donut is seemingly confirmed KIA by Doc. His body is left where he fell, as the rest of his team is forced to flee from Valhalla. He is not mentioned or heard from again until the closing moments of the sponsor version of Chapter 13, when Epsilon-Church orders F.I.L.S.S. to end Recovery Mode for all units. This frees Donut from an apparent armor stasis lock, and he inexplicably revives. His injuries are now either healed or were actually very minor as he doesn't complain about them, instead complaining that blood had gotten on his "nice shoes".

Reunited with Red Team

While investigating the crash site in Valhalla, Simmons and Sarge go looking for Lopez to bring him back online. They find him strung up as a scarecrow, and come across Donut and Doc living together in a shack next door. Simmons comments on how they thought he was dead, while Donut is only concerned about how hard it was to get blood out of his armor.


Main article: Donut's Relationships


Armor Color and Sexuality


A recurring theme involving Donut centers on his armor color and gender. Even though the producers had a plan from the outset to put Donut in pink armor, he initially appears in red so that they could use him in scenes involving the Blue flag, which only appears when playing capture the flag. Initially, they slotted the joke involving pink armor for the last episode of a six- to eight-part series, but Red vs. Blue fleshed out more than expected, and the joke was consequently delayed.[7] Although the delay was unexpected, Werner thought that the early Episode 3 reference to the gag made the eventual punchline "all the sweeter" when it arrives later. [2]When the armor change does occur, it sparks some sexuality confusion.[3] The Reds immediately prod Donut with jokes about his sexuality; when Donut incredulously asks why he would be given pink armor, Grif responds, "Don't ask, don't tell.,"[8]a saying Marines use when talking about homosexuality.[9]

Donut Season 7

Look at it, it's not pink. It's like, uh.. a lightish red.

Originally, Rooster Teeth was going to create a love triangle in which Donut and a mistaken Caboose were two of three participants. However, the armor color change was delayed so much that the creators forgot about this development.[10]Burns mentioned that they tried to exercise some restraint with the armor color jokes when the gag first appeared.[11] In season 2, however, Matt Hullum became more involved as a writer for the series, and, as Godwin noted in an August 2005 interview: "Matt loves a joke, so he definitely ran with it from there but it worked out really well... as Caboose got dumber... they have the two rookies, so the teams mirror each other, but having the character developments go the same direction would be kinda dumb... and to balance it out Donut has to have something.[12]"

The armor color gag also appears outside the series proper. In an audio and video test on the Red vs. Blue season 2 DVD, Donut advises the viewer to adjust the color until his armor appears "perfectly light red".[13] Acting in-character during an interview segment with Godwin that aired on G4techTV, Donut warns, "If your cameras are messed up, and you show my armor as pink to all your viewers, I'm gonna sue."[14] The armor color confusion has also been featured on Red vs. Blue merchandise; a T-shirt sold by Rooster Teeth reads, "It's not pink. It's lightish red."[15] Outside Red vs. Blue, Burns and Hullum joked about red and light red in extra material created for the Season 1 DVD of The Strangerhood, another Machinima series created by Rooster Teeth.[16]

Sense of direction and annoyance of others

Episode 54

Maybe it's an open invitation to some formal ball!

According to Burns, another running gag involving Donut is that he "never knows where he's going".[17] The first instance of this occurs when Donut leaves on his fool's errand in episode 3; he initially heads away from the exit of the base, and Grif has to correct him. On his way back from the Blue Base in episode 6, Grif tells Donut to head to the base and wait. Donut begins to head the wrong way again, and an annoyed Grif yells, "Back to our base, dumbass!"[1]

The other characters are also often annoyed by Donut's tendency to talk incessantly about non-consequential matters. For example, during a repairing on the teleporter in Episode 42, he annoys Tucker by remarking, "I never knew a Phillips screwdriver was the X one. Do you think it's named after a guy named Phillip? That guy Phillip must have a fucked-up-shaped head!"

Donut and Grif

When Grif and Simmons call shotgun for their Warthog in Episode 57, Donut instead calls for "shotgun's lap".[5] As Sarge's right-hand man during Season 4, Donut annoys his leader with various proposals, which include the incorporation of more positive reinforcement and the redecoration of the Red Base.[6]In Recreation, while Simmons & Lopez are trying to hold off the Meta, Donut walks in. Lopez points out the Meta can change color and suggests they shoot him, bury him outback and no one would have to know about it. Despite this, it is hinted that Donut may be the most liked member of both teams.


Recreation 19
Donut has experienced five near-death experiences and come out alive where most would think impossible.
  • The first time was in Episode 11 when Tex stuck a grenade to his head and it exploded. It rendered him unconscious and he had to be evacuated and receive medical attention, but he miraculously survived.
  • The second time was in Episode 77, when a ship landed on him.
  • Immediately thereafter, the third near-death experience occurred directly after Donut was crushed, with him surviving after falling several stories, when the ship's weight actually forced Donut through the ground and into a huge cavern.
  • Donut's fourth near-death experience was when he was rendered comatose from severe dehydration for three days. The events involving this near-death took place over a number of consecutive episodes.
  • Donut's fifth near-death experience was in Think You Know Someone when Washington fired his pistol on him, resulting in a through-and-through shot through Donut's chest. Again, he survived when his armor's recovery mode had activated.


Donut has shown some skills in battle. An example of which is when he claimed that he ran over one of the robots from Lopez's Robot Army that was in pursuit of him and "a few other innocent pedestrians" with the Motorcycle; but Donut may have ultimately been lying.


Is it a spider

Is it spider? Get it off!

His most impressive feat by far was his amazing plasma grenade throw in Season 1, when he hurled a plasma grenade halfway across Blood Gulch with exceptional accuracy to hit Sheila and Tex. In season 5, when Simmons asks Sarge why Donut gets to stay far away from the battle, Sarge says it is because he is the best grenadier on red team, and probably all of Blood Gulch. He also appears to be somewhat of a connoisseur with grenades, asking each Red team member what grenade type, frag or sticky, they would like him to bring in case they are captured and need to kill themselves. Donut claims his amazing skills with grenades come from "Years of tossing."


He tells Simmons and Lopez that he took High School Spanish and can understand everything Lopez is saying. This fact is quickly proven false, however, as Donut can't translate anything Lopez says. In Think You Know Someone, as Simmons tries to fire the warthog chaingun, Lopez says "[Sarcastic] Maybe

Donut talking to Lopez's head

you could ask him to stand in front of it" and when Simmons asks what he said, Donut repeats it, but without the sarcasm, so he apparently only has a very small Spanish vocabulary. Although, in season 3 when Omega questions Lopez as to how to pronounce 'faster' and 'evil' in spanish, Lopez tells Omega to say self-insulting sentences, and Donut appears to understand the overall meaning of what Omega is saying in spanish. This leads to Donut's comment in Spanish, "How strange" as he wonders why Omega is insulting himself.

Voice acting

Dan Godwin, who recorded his lines alone in his home instead of in the Rooster Teeth studio,[12] contributed to some of the jokes involving Donut's personality by ad-libbing. For example, when Donut accidentally injures himself in Episode 35, he exclaims, "Simmons, I need your ovaries!" The initial script mentioned "bones" instead of "ovaries"; Godwin improvised the change, with positive feedback from the staff.[18] When Donut pretends to be a secret agent in the next episode, Godwin ad-libbed sound effects while recording dialogue involving a "super-spy jet pack".[19]

Episode 37's plot requires Church to possess Donut; during production, it was decided that Burns, the voice actor for Church, would voice Donut during the possession. Burns recalled in audio commentary that he made sure to retain an element of Donut's stupidity by confusing pronouns.[10] Later, he stated that Godwin made a unique voice effect to mark the end of Church's possession. As such, Burns used a different visual effect to indicate this transition. Instead of visually dissolving the two characters, as was the normal practice, he flashed Church and Donut back and forth quickly.[10] Another example of Godwin's improvisation occurs near the end of Episode 56. According to Burns, "In the script, all it said was, 'Donut screams like a woman.'… Dan just turned it into the funny thing… that we turned into… Donut running in the background."[20]


Donutisms poster
Donut has been well-received by both Rooster Teeth personnel and viewers. Gustavo Sorola, who voices the character Simmons, noted that Godwin's voice acting "began to pick up" around episode 32 and that "Donut was probably [his] favorite character for season 2.… Dan did a great job."[21] Season 2 co-writer Hullum agreed that episode 32 contained "some of Dan's best acting". In a February 2006 interview, Burnie Burns noted that, early in season 1, fans responded so well to Caboose and Donut that he decided to abandon the idea of an extra character, who would have acted as a journalist, in favor of more storyline involving the rookies.[22] In light of the focus on the personalities of Donut and Caboose in season 2, Jandoc noted that "by season's end the rookies talk and act more like lunatic-asylum escapees than army soldiers. (Perhaps that says something?)"[3] Godwin stated that much of the intended humor involving Donut derives from "gay jokes",[14] but that Rooster Teeth has never received complaints about the theme of homosexuality.[12]


  • On, if you go to a Halo 3 Gamertag, look up the kill/weapon ratio, and scroll over the description of the flag, it reads, "It's next to the headlight fluid." This is a reference to the season one episode when Simmons and Grif send Donut on a trip to go pick up "two quarts of elbow grease" and some "headlight fluid for the Puma".
  • Donut is from Iowa.
  • Donut was the first character to be seen in the Halo 2 engine
  • Along with Tex and Tucker, Donut is one of the main characters from the original Red vs. Blue series that did not appear in Reconstruction.
  • According one of the "Where Are They Now?" endings, Donut married an exotic dancer named Tiffany and they had 12 children. This would imply Donut is metrosexual.
  • The name Franklin Delano Donut is obviously a reference to the former president Franklin Delano Roosevelt.
  • In the season 5 episode "Got Your Back" Church claims to have actually liked Donut.
  • According to Caboose, Donut is also known as Private Biscuit, Lieutenant McMuffin, Admiral Butter Crust, Commander Pop 'n' Fresh, Major Cinnamon Bun and Muffin Man.
  • Donut is the seventh character to be shown in CGI.
  • Donut referred to Caboose as Coose in Visiting Hours.
  • In episode 45 of season 3, Donut lost part of his hand while messing with the parts on the Warthog that Sarge was trying to repair.
  • Donut has been resurrected in Revelation Chapter 13's sponser ending. It has been confirmed that this is canon.
  • According to Sarge in "Drink Your Ovaline", every day at 17:30 (5:30 PM) Donut has a "Daily wine and cheese hour".
  • As noted in the Skills sub-section, Donut is an expert grenadier due to "years of tossing". Tossing is also a vulgar slang for masturbation, which is likely intentional due to his common use of sexual innuendos.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Burns, et al., 2003.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Werner, 2.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Jandoc.
  4. Burns, et al., 2004.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Burns, et al., 2005.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Burns, et al., Red vs. Blue Season Four.
  7. Burns, et al., 2003, Audio Commentary, episode 4.
  8. Burns, et al., 2003, episode 16.
  9. Burns, et al., 2003, episode 18.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 Burns, et al., 2004, Audio Commentary, episode 37.
  11. Burns, et al., 2003, Audio Commentary, episode 16.
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 Marks, Dan Godwin and Jason Saldaña.
  13. Burns, et al., 2004, Audio/Video Setup.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Pereira.
  15. "It's Not Pink", Red vs. Blue Store.
  16. Burns, et al., 2006, The Strangerhood, Cast & Crew, Burnie Burns & Matt Hullum.
  17. Burns, et al., 2003, Audio Commentary, episode 3.
  18. Burns, et al., 2004, Audio Commentary, episode 35.
  19. Marks, Burnie Burns and Gus Sorola.
  20. Burns, et al., 2005, Audio Commentary, episode 56.
  21. Burns, et al., 2004, Audio Commentary, episode 32.
  22. Smith.

Red Team
Most Known: Sarge (ε) · Dick Simmons (ε) · Dexter Grif (ε) · Franklin Delano Donut (ε) · Lopez the Heavy (ε)
Other Members: Lopez 2.0 · Max Gain · Phil · Red Zealot · Walter Henderson · Holo-Grif · Burke ·
Dellario · Tubbs · Red Mutineer
Vehicles: M12 LRV · Motorcycle

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