TV Features

Why "Hunter x Hunter's" Killua Zoldyck Is the Best Boy in Anime

A deep dive into Killua Zoldyck's characterization

Shueisha

Hunter x Hunter is one of the most popular anime series, especially within the shōnen genre.

Its main appeal lies in its character relationships, specifically that between the protagonist and deuteragonist, Gon Freecs and Killua Zoldyck.

The two boys first meet while taking the arduous "Hunter Exam" — a deadly test designed to determine those capable of holding the esteemed title of "Hunter." During the first phase of the exam, Gon, an optimistic kid on a mission to find his father, sticks up for Killua, an assassin prodigy, after another contestant questions his usage of a skateboard. Killua immediately becomes enamored with Gon, and after discovering they're the same age (12), the two become an inseparable pair.

Gon and Killua's relationship grows into an extraordinary friendship, but its bulk is shouldered by Killua. His self-sacrificial nature, his journey toward self-worth, and his incredible complexity makes Killua the most popular and beloved character in Hunter x Hunter, and arguably, in all of anime. His growth is extremely well-written, and he becomes a character one attaches themselves to with great empathy throughout the story.

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