Big Z.png
Zeke Topanga
Background information
Feature films Surf's Up
Surf's Up 2: WaveMania (flashback)
Short films
Television programs
Video games Surf's Up
Portrayed by
Portrayed by
Voice Jeff Bridges
Honors and awards
Character information
Full name Zeke Topanga
Other names Big Z
Personality Sagacious, gallant, thrilled, fair, geeky, fatherly, kind, goofy
Appearance Overweight penguin with dreads, brown eyes
Occupation Surfer (formerly)
Alignment Good
Goal To teach Cody to surf (succeeded)
Home Pen Gu Island
Relatives Lani Aliikai (niece)
Allies Cody Maverick, Chicken Joe, Lani Aliikai, Tank Evans (formerly), Reggie Belafonte (formerly)
Minions Tank Evans (formerly)
Enemies Tank Evans, Reggie Belafonte
Likes Making surf boards, music, his fans, jokes, taking naps
Dislikes Tank Evans, Reggie, failure, impudence
Powers and abilities Surf skills
Fate He invites the penguins to surf and joined Cody
Quote Back in that day, winning was everything to me, and I knew I was gonna beat Tank. But then he starts surfing circles around me. I saw what he was doing. Times change. Well, I didn't want to go back to that beach, in front of all my fans, thinking "Look at Big Z, the loser, the has-been." So... poof! Big Z's dead. And he's gonna stay that way.

Zeke Geek Topanga is one of the protagonists of the movie Surf's Up.




Early Life

First meet young Cody

Big Z was originally a famous surfer who one time visited Shiverpool in Antartica and met a young penguin named Cody Maverick a gave him his necklace. 

Big Z preparing to surf against Tank

Sometime after this, he competed in a surfing contest with another surfer named  Tank "The Shredder" Evans, who wiped him out. Realizing that he couldn't compete with Tank and was tired, Z faked a disappearance and became a recluse named Geek. After this a surfing contest called The Big Z Memorial Surf Off was started which was once by Tank nine times.

Surf's Up

Ten years after his disappearance, "Geek"'s niece Lani came to him with a now 17-year-old Cody, who had got hurt during a surf off against Tank. After healing Cody, "Geek" teaches him how to make a perfect surfboard. Later Cody and "Geek" discover a shack full of old trophies and surfboards which Cody sees as Z's, before discovering that "Geek" is Z. Cody asks Z to teach him to surf (as he wishes to the part in surf off), which Z reluctantly agrees.

After the training, Cody asks Z to come and watch the surf off, but Z refuses and reveals that he faked his disappearance. Upset that Z just gave up, Cody leaves to take part in the surf off. Z secretly watches the contest and later helps Cody get back to the beach after he wipes out. They learn that Chicken Joe won by default after Cody and Tank got disqualified, but Cody doesn't care about winning and decides to have fun instead. Z reveals himself to the audience and invites them to surf and is joined by Cody and Joe.


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  • For reasons unknown, Z is not seen or mentioned in the film's 2017 sequel Surf's Up 2: Wavemania.
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