surface

We have analyzed Kai's role in the series and the first impression he left on us when he first appeared. I think it's safe to say that Kai is really a much deeper character than one might think and I believe that Kai's self is sort of 'divided' in two – his 'outer' self and his 'inner' self. In this section we will be talking about Kai's 'outer' self – how does he appear on the surface? Is that really who he really is? Or is that just a mask?

As far as physical appearance goes, I think we can all agree that Kai looks pretty handsome. He's well-built (probably because of all the training he goes through), he's got quite beautiful eyes and the usual 'spikey' haircut typical of (most of) shounnen manga's characters. He's also got blue-coloured tattoes on his face, which make him stand out from all the other characters. All in all, I think Kai is very 'likeable' for his physical appearance (reason why he had lots of fangirls back in the days when Beyblade was popular) – but what about his personality?

Well, Kai's 'outer' personality really isn't that hard to figure out – on the contrary, it becomes quite clear in the very first episodes of Beyblade. He's basically a loner, cold towards everybody, who only wants to be the best blader out there. He doesn't let anybody in, he doesn't talk about himself and he keeps to himself most of the time. He seems like a cold-hearted person who cares only about himself – and, for some time, Kai really was like that. That's exactly how he appeared to be on the outside for most of the first season.

That might seem like a mask, at first. On the outside he acts like a jerk who doesn't seem to care at all, but what if he actually does care? Maybe he's just that kind of character who wants to look tough and fearsome, while being a sweetheart on the inside. But then again, does he truthfully care about others because he's worried, or just to help himself meet his goal? For the most part of the first season, I think that's not really a mask – that's who Kai mainly is. He has built walls around him and his true personality is hidden under layers and layers of ice. However, he's probably not even fully aware of this. He doesn't let anyone in, because he focuses mainly on himself, not because he doesn't want others to see who he is. Kai himself didn't remember a thing about his past – it wasn't like he didn't want anyone to find that out about him, he simply didn't even know that about himself. He's a loner and he cares mostly only about himself because that's how he's always lived – alone and only having to take care of himself. Usually, people put up a mask when they don't want others to find something about them that they're somewhat ashamed of, whether it may be their past or an aspect of their personality they don't like. Kai had nothing to hide (and didn't even know he had something to hide, for that matter) and it makes me think that the way he acted (cold and distant) was not a mask at all – it was just who he was before he changed.

In fact, after the end of the first series, there is a slight change in Kai's 'outer' personality. It might not strike as obvious, but he does change a little bit. It's true that he stays quiet and keeps to himself like he did before, but it's different – he's not mean, he's not distant and he's not as cold towards others as he was at the beginning. He doesn't betray his teammates anymore and he doesn't think only about himself – he truly cares. When he gives advice to his teammates or when he helps them in any other way, he doesn't do it because he's thinking about his objective – he does it because he actually cares about them. He's comfortable with this aspect of his personality and he doesn't need to make up excuses anymore.

I like to think that Kai's 'outer' personality is, again, split in two – 'before' Russia and 'after' Russia. The difference might not be that visible, but it's there nonetheless.

Flames of Ice © Chibi. Part of Reflection & The Endless Sky Network.
Bakuten Shoot Beyblade & all its characters © Takao Aoki.
No copyright infringement intended.
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