Kendo Team Captain
Any Japanese school worth its salt has a Kendo team, and any school at which the Kendo team gets significant on-screen time will have a rather good one. At such a school, the Club President
of the kendo team will usually be an important character of some sort. He or she (usually he, but females are showing up more often in this role, and are usually Shorttank
or Defrosting Ice Queen
types) is generally sempai
to the Kid Samurai
, a True Companion
to the Student Council President
, and possibly The Rival
to the Heir to the Dojo
One aspect to this trope that may not be immediately apparent to Western audiences is the social ranking of after school activities. A rough equivalent would be the status hierarchy that exists in American high school sports. Kendo, as a traditional martial art and one that requires a good deal of strength and dexterity, is a club with high social status, thus the usual prominence of its club president.
Most likely the Big Man on Campus
. If he serves as The Ace
, or another character's Always Someone Better
, see School Idol
. If he's a Jerkass
, see Jerk Jock
. If there's one in the club, the Cute Sports Club Manager
is his most likely Love Interest
Sometimes, the Kendo Captain will be replaced with Judo or Karate captain, depending on the school and other factors.
The closest Western counterpart would probably be the captain of the football team in American High School
series. The Quidditch captain in the Harry Potter
books also holds a reasonably similar position, both in school pecking order and plot function.
Compare Heir to the Dojo
Anime and Manga
- Kyouichi Saiyonji from Revolutionary Girl Utena.
- Tatewaki Kuno from Ranma ½ is the captain of the team, but he is a grade-A, class one moron and buffoon that almost no one takes seriously. In spite of that, he's an absolute monster capable of breaking stone with his sword (he only appears weak because the main characters and many recurring ones are much stronger).
- Rei Hasekura (Rosa Foetida en Bouton) from Maria-sama ga Miteru.
- Kirino from Bamboo Blade. Since the whole show is about kendo, that makes her role quite prominent.
- Masashi Takeda (pictured above) from Mai-HiME.
- Soichiro Arima in His and Her Circumstances, who also doubles as the student council president. Somewhat justified, in that he spends almost every waking moment devoted to academic perfection, thinking it's his way to prove to his family and himself that he's a good, worthy person.
- Maya Natsume from Tenjho Tenge.
- Wakou, Sharaku's tomboyish older sister from Black Jack.
- Masaya Aoyama in Tokyo Mew Mew.
- Shiina from The Secret of Haruka Nogizaka is on the naginata team.
- Subversion: Genichirou Sanada from The Prince of Tennis has the looks, the behavior, the ethics code and the kendo skills... but he's the sub-captain of the tennis team.
- To a degree, all of the tennis captains count as moral equivalents, considering how the story revolves around tennis.
- Hinagiku Katsura in Hayate the Combat Butler - in this case she's also the Student Council President and adored by guys and girls alike as the School Idol. Despite this, and the wealth and prestige of their school, the Kendo team itself is rather unpopular with few new members and no known competent members besides Hinagiku herself. When Hayate tried to join to get Nagi interested in sports the club members seethed with jealousy at how close the two of them were as apparently none of them refer to Hinagiku by her given name. The did express a desire to, but the fact that Hinagiku is beautiful, aloof, and so much better than them keeps any of them from trying.
- Masamune Asuka and Tounomine Hajime in Otomen.
- Heiji Hattori in Detective Conan. His kendo abilities become sometimes in handy when he is in the middle of a dangerous investigation.
- Takemitsu Shinzou in Sket Dance. Bonus points for also constantly cosplaying as a samurai.
- Shusui Hayasaka of Busou Renkin.
- Saeko Bushijima in the beginning of Highschool of the Dead.
- Kamiya Tsurugi and Taizan Yodaka are both captains of their Kendo clubs in the 2011 manga, Kurogane.
- Wakaba Saegusa in Vividred Operation
- Uzu Sanageyama from Kill la Kill is one, as well as being a member of the Elite Four, the second-in-command of the series' Absurdly Powerful Student Council. Uzu has a unique skill to dodge any attack he can see. After losing a battle with the main character, who manages to blind him, he sews his own eyes shut. Rather than slow him down, it makes him even more powerful.
- Hisashi Miyamoto from Jewelpet (2009), the human partner of Chite and love interest to the heroine's best friend.
- Persona 3 has a Kendo Team Social Link, indeed mainly focused on the captain. However, the script's mostly the same even if you're on the Track or Swim teams, and on the whole the team doesn't really have as massive a pull as the other examples on this page.
- Persona 3 Portable adds new scenes with the Kendo Team Link seeing the captain from a different direction and adds the girls Tennis team captain who starts failing at her job to inspire her teammates which you help her out on.
- Osanai Syouko, the protagonist of Girls Love VN Aoi Shiro. She has everything you can expect to find in a Kendo team captain.
Anime and Manga
- Oliver Wood, Cedric Diggory, Angelina Johnson, Roger Davies, and Harry Potter himself.
- In The Fault in Our Stars, Augustus was a star of the freshman basketball team (in Indiana, where basketball is king) prior to losing a leg to cancer.
- Since Whateley Academy in the Whateley Universe is a Superhero School, there's a big emphasis on self-defense. So there are two martials arts groups, each with their own fearsome leader: N'Dizi of the Tigers and Zhong Lau of the Dragons.
- Eric Bennett from Bionic Six is the captain and star of his school's baseball team. In fact, his fighting style as Sport-1 involved him using a baseball bat as his main weapon.