Although he serves as the secondary antagonist for the latter half of the first season he's still friendly and kind.
Ruddiger enjoys eating apples, spending time with his young owner and friend, Varian and getting attention from him. Initially appearing as a sluggish pest, Ruddiger evolved with his screen time. When Varian became a villain bent on destroying Rapunzel, Ruddiger proved his nobility by working with the royal family to foil Varian's schemes. Though fearful, Ruddiger never became spiteful towards his master; he believes that Varian will someday regain his conscience and compassion, evidenced by his choosing to remain by Varian's side after the alchemist was arrested.
When Ruddiger was under the influence of Varian's formula, the raccoon became violent towards the people that came near him. The formula buried Ruddiger's kind, sweet, and friendly nature and brought out an untameable, wild, and vicious side in him.
Ruddiger has monochrome gray fur and a long striped tail, like all raccoons. Ruddiger is seen as a chubby one, with green eyes and only has one tooth, which is only seen when his mouth is opened.
When under the influence of Varian's formula, the raccoon became larger than a human while his fur turned brown. His eyes turned white, and his formerly small teeth and claws become sharper and longer, which made him look ferocious. He also had odd blister-like patches on his elbows and knees.
Role in the series
As the number of the black rocks grew to the point of destroying the mainland village of Old Corona in the events of "Queen for a Day", Varian consults his concerns and theories of the rocks with Ruddiger before taking the matter into his own hands. When Varian starts down on his path of revenge against Rapunzel and Corona for turning their backs on him while his father is encased in amber, Ruddiger hides under a bench as he could sense what Varian's betrayed feelings were slowing turning him into. He became Varian's only companion after Quirin was trapped and with the rest of the villagers abandoning the black rock-covered village.
Ruddiger later accompanies Varian on his task to obtain the Sun Drop flower from Corona, in "The Alchemist Returns". The duo also journeys through Der Soone's underground tunnels with Rapunzel and Pascal beside them.
In the events of "Secret of the Sun Drop", Varian uses one of his chemical formulas to turn Ruddiger into a large, monstrous, and vicious version of himself to serve as a distraction for Rapunzel. After he is captured by Rapunzel and her friends, the effects wear off and Ruddiger reverts back to normal. Not long after the royal family fell for the vengeful alchemist's trap and were captured, Ruddiger frees the caged Pascal, so that he could free Rapunzel and her parents. When Varian's plan crumbles and the young alchemist is arrested for his crimes against the crown, Ruddiger willingly accompanies his master to prison. He sympathetically consoles Varian as the young alchemist swears to make his father proud.
- Ruddiger made his first appearance in "What the Hair?!", but his name wasn't revealed until "Queen for a Day".
- "Rüdiger" [sic] is a German name, roughly equivalent to English "Roger". Rüdiger is the name of a tragic character in the famous medieval German poem, The Nibelungenlied, in which he is a vassal of King Etzel (aka Atilla (!) the Hun), whom he convinces Princess Kriemhild, the heroine of the poem, to marry.
- When Rapunzel encountered the friendly raccoon in "The Alchemist Returns", she knew the name that Varian had given him, which suggests that Varian had introduced his pet to Rapunzel around when he was showing her the black rocks that appeared in his village.
- Despite the Kingdom of Corona'a having a vaguely historic European ambiance, raccoons are in fact native only to North America.