|“||In my life, I have nothing that I can brag about... Except the one thing that others admires... My Karate!||”|
– Katou during his fight with Dorian.
Kiyosumi Katou (加藤 清澄, Katō Kiyosumi) is a fictional character from anime and manga series of Baki the Grappler. His name was changed to Seicho Katou in the english version of OVA.
He is known as the "Dangerous Lion of Shinshinkai" (神心会のデンジャラス・ライオン, Shinshinkai no Denjarasu Raion).
Kiyosumi Katou is a top student of Doppo Orochi, who left the dojo after having enough of Doppo's "weak" training regime and started to live as a yakuza. He returns after his reunion with Doppo and finding out about the Underground tournaments. Katou's attitude is best described as arrogant, but usually being the butt of a joke; especially around Doppo, Katsumi Orochi, Mitsunari Tokugawa, and Baki Hanma. However, it is shown that he truly admires and cares for Doppo. Katou admits that he has always been the one that his master chewed out the most, but he never blames Doppo for this.
He can be a very brutal and cunning person. For example, he cut off Dorian's ear with a makeshift weapon that's made from a rubber tubing and fishing line; he says to his master that it doesn't really count as a prepared weapon since he just happens to have it on him when he enjoys going fishing. Katou didn't really have that weapon with him by accident. He admits that his attitude to a fight is different from that of his master. Doppo Orochi sees karate as his way of life and Katou sees it as his tool. In the first manga series, Katou told Mitsunari Tokugawa that he considers martial arts merely as the art of killing that people have practiced for thousands of years.
He has a high temperament and gets mad quickly. He hates losing and being underestimated. He's most satisfied with winning. He was livid when he couldn't give any serious damage to Yasha-Zaru Jr, and when Baki wounded his pride by telling him that he, unfortunately, has no chance of defeating the ape, Katou was angry enough to attack Baki.
Katou seems to be quite a multidimensional character who has some frustrations. During his second encounter with Dorian, he admits that he doesn't have too many things to be proud of in his life, and his karate is his only pride, despite being more of a tool than anything. At the same time, he knows well that he is not as strong as other great fighters from the series. Perhaps this is the main reason why Katou is so happy when he wins and is able to do even dirty things to make it happen. His frustration over his lack of strength and need for victory made him easily succumb to Dorian's suggestions when he was hypnotized by him. Katou imagined that Dorian was weaker than he was in reality so he was able to destroy him in battle and satisfy his desires.
He is a man of average height with slicked back black hair. Katou has black eyes like a typical Japanese. In the first two anime seasons, he had a pretty dark skin resembling a suntan, and in the third season his complexion was standard. He is quite slim, but at the same time very well built, just like most characters in the series. After his memorable and brutal battle with Dorian, he has many scars on his face.
Katou often wears different sweatshirts and always dresses in tracksuit style. In the OVA, his tracksuit costume was whole in purple color. In the first two seasons of anime, he wore a sweatshirt in a specific shade resembling a combination of grey and violet, and in the third season, he wore a green sweatshirt with a tight black T-shirt under it. He fights in a traditional karate outfit in the Underground Arena.
Baki the GrapplerEdit
Underground Arena SagaEdit
Kiyosumi Katou appears for the first time in the series when the Shinshinkai Karate tournament is held in the Budokan arena. Baki Hanma beats Atsushi Suedo in the finals and later goes to the locker-room, but in the hallway he meets Katou, who brass reporters off who want to interview Baki. It turns out that Katou knocked out a few martial arts masters in the corridor, who probably also wanted to meet Baki. Katou says he's a Shinshinkai style karateka, but he didn't take part in the event because of the tournament rules that don't allow the fighters to get serious. Baki starts to ignore the arrogant karateka, who gets a little angry and tries to attack Baki. Then Izou Motobe and his student with an unknown name suddenly appear in the locker-room. Katou gets mad that someone is disturbing his "meeting" with Baki. When confusion begins, Baki gets tired of the whole situation and runs out of the locker-room and Katou is surprised and even more angry. He starts arguing with Motobe and fights his student. He notes that Motobe student's fighting style is something like jujutsu. A short battle is won by Katou who almost fights Izou Motobe after a while, but then Doppo Orochi appears with other Shinshinkai students. Katou is surprised to meet Doppo, his former master, who he hasn't seen for a very long time. Doppo introduces him to Motobe and says he's a legendary jujutsu master. After a while, Motobe leaves.
In anime, his meeting with Doppo looks completely different. Katou comes unexpectedly to the Shinshinkai's headquarters and attacks various karate students. At some point, Doppo checks what is happening and surprised to see Kiyosumi Katou. Atsushi Suedo is mad at him for attacking the dojo he used to learning in. They start a short fight, but Katou wins easily.
Later, Katou is meeting with Doppo for dinner at the restaurant. They're talking about that Katou left the dojo and joined the yakuza a few years ago. In the English version of the anime, it is only said that he set out on a journey around the world. Katou tells the former master that the Shinshinkai school does not teach real fighting and that the real satisfaction was given to him by brutal fighting in the gangster world. Doppo wants to prove to him that his karate is real and challenges him. Suddenly, Katou attacks him by surprise, but after a while, Doppo grabs him from behind and slowly puts his fingers closer to his eyes. It turns out that Katou doesn't stand a chance against him. Shinshinkai grandmaster tells him about the Underground Arena in Tokyo Dome and that Baki is the champion of that place. Katou gets excited and wants to see the arena.
Later Doppo comes with Katou to Tokyo Dome. The young karateka does not yet know that this is where the Underground Arena is located and is very surprised when he discovers the truth. There he meets Mitsunari Tokugawa, the owner of the arena and an old friend of Doppo. In the arena, there are two fights that day. Katou is impressed when he watches the match between Kuzumi Kouhei, a professional wrestler, and Ryuukongou, a sumo yokozuna. Tokugawa tells them how this arena was created years ago and then Kosho Shinogi and the mighty champion Baki Hanma enter the ring. Katou is a witness to this exciting battle. After the fight Tokugawa tells him that Baki's father is famous fighter known as "the Strongest Creature on Earth" (Yujiro Hanma). In anime there is also a scene where Katou, Doppo, Tokugawa and Motobe come to meet Baki after the match is over. It is then that he meets Baki and Motobe in an animated version for the first time.
Then Doppo Orochi comes with Katou to the Shinshinkai dojo. The young karateka decides to return to the teachings of the grandmaster, who presents him to his students as his former pupil. He asks his students who wants to have a sparring with Katou. Takagi, one of the best fighters from the Shinshinkai school, takes the challenge. The former yakuza starts to mock his opponent. Then a short fight takes place, and Katou easly wins. In the anime it is shown that he later fights with other Shinshinkai students and knocks everyone out. In the anime series, this scene takes place after the fight with Kosho Shinogi, but in the manga it takes place before this match.
Several scenes that did not appear in manga were added to the anime. For example, how he comes to Tokugawa's household when the old man and several martial artists talk about the next oponent of Baki. Katou starts to persuade Tokugawa to make him another challenger. The old man's guests start protesting, even though Tokugawa presents Katou as Doppo Orochi's best pupil, but then Kanji Igari appears and says that the Underground Arena is not a place for fighters who "deserve" it, but for those who are simply the strongest. In the evening of the same day, Katou meets Igari and talks about who is Baki's mysterious opponent in the next fight. After a while, they are both attacked by the martial artists they talked to in the Tokugawa's house. They start to fight them, but soon Mount Toba shows up and helps them to get things done faster. By the way, it turns out that Mount Toba, a giant pro wrestler, is another opponent of Baki. Later, Katou is a witness to their fight in the Underground Arena.
Later, a scene is shown where Katou meets Baki and Kozue Matsumoto after their school. Katou tells the young fighter that Tokugawa wants to meet him (because he wants to tell him about his new opponent). He also calls Baki by the title of "champion", making Kozue ask what's going on. Baki rushes Kozue and runs away. The scene is only shown in the anime series. Soon Katou watches and comments on Doppo Orochi and Yujiro Hanma's fight in the Underground Arena. He's terrified when his master almost dies in a match. Later he is a witness to Baki and Kureha Shinogi battle.
Maximum Tournament SagaEdit
Katou and Suedo are helping Doppo with a little demonstration training in the dojo when the Shinshinkai grandmaster returns to shape after his tragic battle with the Ogre. Doppo informs Katou and Suedo that he intends to send his son, Katsumi Orochi, to the Underground Arena. At this time Tokugawa tells them that he is planning to organize a great martial arts tournament in Tokyo Dome. Soon Katou fights Junichi Hanada in the Underground Arena. Their match is to decide which of them will take part in the Maximum Tournament. A young karateka attacks him from the air, but Hanada blocks almost every strike except a knee kick to the nose. After a while Katou gives him a powerful crotch blow and Hanada gives up (in anime Hanada gives up after Katou hits his eye). Katou furiously asks Tokugawa if he has to fight someone else to join the tournament, but the old man replies that Katou can already take part.
Most Evil Death Row Convicts SagaEdit
During the 2018 series of Baki, he fought and cut off the ear of Kaioh Dorian, one of the 5 very dangerous prisoners who were placed on death row because of their crimes, and proceeded to follow him to an old WW2 bunker underneath Tokyo. There, he fought using every trick he could come up with, all of which failing.
He eventually lost the fight, severely under-estimating Dorian's abilities and the convict using hypnosis to make him Katou believe that he was actually a match for Dorian. Katou suffers terrible injuries at Dorian's hands, motivating the entire Shinshinkai dojo to come after his attacker. After Doppo defeats Dorian, Katou was brought before the convict, approaching him despite his injuries before letting out a fearsome cry. This forces Dorian to admit that he was defeated.
Katou is a strong fighter and one of the greatest Shinshinkai students. He loves using dirty moves during a fight, such as eye-poking and ball-kicking. He has proved to be powerful enough to cut through flesh and human limbs with his unnamed karate-chop technique. Kiyosumi Katou used this technique during his sparring fight against Takagi and was able to cut through his fellow student's hand with it.
In the second series, he used a fishing rod's rope and rubber tube as a weapon to cut Dorian's ear in a surprise attack. Even then, he was brutally beaten by Dorian and had his face scarred with a broken bottle. He has high durability: despite almost getting beat to death and had his neck cut with a super-thin metal wire, he survived. He sustained multiple critical and life-threatening injuries after picking a fight with Dorian and survived despite not getting immediate medical attention.
Not only is it characteristic for him to use dirty tricks, but also his fighting style is quite unusual. Katou doesn't fight like standard karateka. His movements are very dynamic and at times even acrobatic, as he showed, for example, in the fight against Dorian, using many kicks in the air. He also likes to perform the most brutal attacks on his opponents, and in critical situations he can use very unconventional actions, such as for example throwing a few bottles towards his opponent and then breaking them with a kick on his face. In volume 21 of the first series, his fighting style has been defined as the "reckless karate art" (無頼派空手, Buraiha Karate). It was a reference to a Japanese group of writers – the Buraiha, known also as the Decadent School.
- The 1994 OVA showed that he rides a motorcycle. However, there was never any mention about it in the manga.