Bagheera is the tritagonist of Disney's 1967 film the The Jungle Book. He serves as the guardian of "Man-Cub", Mowgli for most of the original film, and is the somewhat reluctant companion of Baloo.
☀Bagheera is presented as a wise figure. Level headed and intelligent, the panther is amongst the most down-to-earth residents of the jungle. When first introduced, he is seen as a selfless and caring individual, rescuing the orphaned Mowgli, and going out of his way to ensure his safety from that moment forward. Although he cares a great deal about the man-cub, Bagheera is also easily frustrated and intolerable of tomfoolery. This would result in rather heated arguments against the two, specifically in regards to whether or not Mowgli should remain in the jungle or return to the Man Village to live amongst his own species. Bagheera's temper can occasionally blind his sense of judgment, resulting in careless behavior such as abandoning Mowgli in the jungle despite the knowing dangers that lurk. Nevertheless, he is quick to reform and repeatedly finds himself by Mowgli's side once again. He is a devoted ally and makes it a crucial objective to protect those he cares about.
Bagheera is also commonly known as the foil of [[Baloo]] the bear, whom the former views as a "stupid, jungle bum". The two have opposite personalities, and continuously annoy one another with their need to push their own personal opinions onto each other. Nevertheless, these conflicts mostly centered around Mowgli's fate, and the two generally share a brotherly bond. Following the climax, when it appeared Baloo had met his demise, Bagheera revealed that he truly did care for the bear, and was notably embarrassed to see that Baloo had overheard his heartfelt eulogy. Once Mowgli made the decision to return to the Man Village, Bagheera and Baloo joyfully returned to their lives in the jungle, setting aside their differences and remained together as best friends.
Bagheera is a slender, dark gray panther. He has a gray muzzle and a pink nose, and his eyebrows are black. He has yellow eyes with black pupils, and a pair of numerous whiskers.
Bagheera is the first character to appear in the film and he narrates the first part of the film too. He discovers an infant amidst the debris of a wrecked canoe. Knowing that the man-cub would need nourishment and that the nearest village was days away, he brings the baby to a family of wolves who had recently had cubs. The wolves name the baby, Mowgli and make him part of their wolf family. There, Mowgli is nurtured for 10 years, with Bagheera often stopping by to check on him. However, Bagheera knew that eventually, Mowgli would have to return to his own kind someday.
Bagheera's notion proves right when a tiger named Shere Khan returns to their part of the jungle where the wolf pack lives, and threatens to kill the boy and all those who would protect him. As a result, the wolf elders decide to have Mowgli leave the pack, so Bagheera offers to take him to a man village, where Mowgli will be safe. Bagheera starts the journey that night, but runs into problems as Mowgli does not want to leave the jungle. Even the threat of Shere Khan and a run in with a snake named Kaa does not change the boy's mind. Aggravated, Bagheera tries (but fails) to drag Mowgli all the way to the man-village by his loincloth and immediately after, leaves Mowgli on his own, but upon hearing a roar, quickly rushes back to Mowgli's aid. To add to his annoyance, he discovers that the roar is none other than one of his friends, a bear named Baloo, who was playing with Mowgli. Bagheera declares that Mowgli must go back to the man-village, but Mowgli decides to stay with Baloo, who has promised to take care of him. Bagheera chooses to leave Mowgli in Baloo's care, knowing that Baloo will soon need his help. Sure enough, Mowgli is kidnapped by monkeys and Bagheera is called to assist in Mowgli's rescue. Bagheera does not appear until after Shere Khan has attacked Baloo, who was defending Mowgli, who in turn, attacked him with fire, scaring him off. Believing Baloo to be dead, Bagheera eulogizes him, only for Baloo to awaken, calling for more. Bagheera is annoyed, going so far as to call the bear a fraud, but Mowgli is overjoyed. Bagheera and Baloo later watch as Mowgli is lured into the man-village by a young girl. Pleased that Mowgli is safe, they head back to their own homes.