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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. A top student of Doppo Orochi, who believes karate should be no-holds barred and fights attacking areas such as the eyes. 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 since 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. Katou hates losing and being underestimated. He's most satisfied with winning. Katou 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 multi-faceted 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 and that he was able to destroy him in battle, thus satisfy his own 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 Grappler[]

Underground Arena Saga[]

Katou and Baki.

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 Suedou 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 the 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 Suedou is mad at him for attacking the dojo he used to learning in. They start a short fight, but Katou wins easily.

Katou during his fight with Doppo.

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.

Then 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 Kouhei Kuzumi, a professional wrestler, and Ryuukongou, a sumo yokozuna. Tokugawa tells them how this arena was created years ago and then Koushou 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" (Yuujiro 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.

Katou vs Takagi.

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 Koushou 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 Yuujiro 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 Saga[]

Katou fighting Junichi Hanada.

Katou and Suedou 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 Suedou 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. The 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.

When the Maximum Tournament starts, Katou spends most of his time with Baki while commenting on the various battles. When Katsumi Orochi and Doppo are doing a slow sparring match in the locker-room, Katou tells Baki that he wouldn't be able to do it with Doppo, and Baki says that he has tried it before and he hasn't succeeded either. Katou is surprised, but after a while he arrogantly tells Baki that he will not give up on the tournament and will be a winner in his group.

Katou vs Yasha-Zaru Jr.

In the first fight, Katou's opponent is Roberto Guerlain, but it turns out that Tokugawa has changed his plans and decided that a mysterious, special reserve, Yasha-Zaru Jr, a powerful ape from the Yasha crag, will enter the game. Junior brutally knocks out Guerlain in the corridor and enters the arena. Katou is in shock, and Tokugawa encourages him to fight, saying that Baki once defeated the ape's father in a fight. This fact motivates Katou to fight, and the young karateka attacks it with all his might. Unfortunately, his attacks have no effect and Yasha-Zaru Jr even for a moment becomes sleepy. At some point the ape catches and throws Katou into the arena corridor and the rest of the fight takes place there. Katou still tries to do some damage against the ape and points his fingers at its eyes, but then Junior performs a knockout counterattack against the young karateka. In the manga, Baki intervenes and has a short duel with the ape, but after a while he falls to the ground and then Katsumi Orochi chellenges Yasha-Zaru Jr. In the anime, Katsumi enters right after Katou's defeat and the scene of Baki's fight does not take place. When Katsumi knocks out the ape and almost starts a serious battle with angry Baki, Katou interrupts them and tries to calm both fighters down.

Eventually Katou is considered a loser in the fight and his participation in the tournament is over. In the further part of the saga, his role is limited to commenting on various matches. When Katsumi Orochi starts to lose his fighting spirit in the battle with Kaoru Hanayama, Katou and Atsushi Suedou stand beside the arena's fence and begin to perform seiken punches like a kata, wanting to give motivation to the young Shinshinkai master.


Most Evil Death Row Convicts Saga[]

During a commotion at the Tokugawa's house and Katsumi fights Dorian, Katou unexpectedly appears and greets everyone. It turns out that Katsumi has changed his views about the fighting way and started to treat Katou as his new "senior", stating that Katou's fighting methods is better than Doppo Orochi's teachings. Katou attacks Dorian, one of the five convicts who came to Tokyo. He's mad at him for cutting Doppo's hand off. A short battle takes place between them, and Katou cuts off the ear of the American convict. He uses a fishing wire to do this and explains to Doppo that he accidentally had it with him. The Shinshinkai grandmaster scolds him for the fact that his fighting way lack aesthetics. At some point Dorian uses his special wire and to catch both Katou and Katsumi. In the last moment, Doppo cuts the wire with his own hand before Dorian manages to slash the two fighters. Eventually, the American pulls out a hidden grenade and performs an explosion in the Tokugawa place.

Katou during his battle with Dorian.

When Dorian escapes from the household of the Underground Arena owner, Katou decides to chase him. The convict goes to his secret hiding place underground and after a while Katou reveals that he followed Dorian. The American feels disappointed to see the young karateka, stating that he is unable to give him his desired defeat. They talk for a while about the fact that the place where they are located is a secret base from the Second World War. At some point Katou kicks Dorian by surprise, but the convict easily avoids his assault and counterattacks with a powerful Chinese Kempo technique. The American explains to karateka that in the Tokugawa's house he was actually hiding his real skills, and after a while he puts his hands in a bucket of grease and wraps them in the glass, stating that he wants to end their conflict as gangsters used to do. Katou refuses to use this method and says he will fight by his own way. Dorian gives several brutal blows to the karateka, but Katou does not give up and uses nearby bottles to seriously injure his opponent, smashing them with kicks on the convict's face, for example. At some point Katou starts to overcome him and even takes his eyes off by sticking his fingers in the convict's eyeballs. However, after a while it turns out that for some time the young karateka was under the influence of Dorian's hypnosis and did not really any serious damage to him. The convict says that Katou has no chance of winning. Nevertheless, the karateka does not give up and wants to use his fishing wire again, but before he manages to make any attack, Dorian brutally rips his neck with his own wire and the battle is over.

Kaiou Retsu finds the body of half-dead Katou in a training bag in the Shinshinkai dojo. Later it turns out that Katou has barely survived the massive amount of injuries and is unconscious in the hospital. The Shinshinkai School swears revenge to Dorian for how horrible he beated Katou. For example, Atsushi Suedou decides to avenge him (but unfortunately he almost dies during the fight with the American convict).

Katou's rage.

When Doppo Orochi almost defeats Dorian in the amusement park, he holds back his fist at the last minute, which was supposed to give a final blow. At this point, one of the Shinshinkai students suddenly appears with unconscious Katou sitting in a wheelchair. A moment later, the doctor who was taking care of Katou drives up the car and asks furiously what are they doing. Doppo tells him that Katou has come to perform the final blow, and unconscious Katou gets up from the wheelchair, getting everybody to understand that even if he is mentally unconscious, his fighting spirit moves his body. He approaches Dorian and takes a position to attack with fury in his eyes. All this shocking situation and the sight of Katou makes the American convict start crying insanely out of fear and admit defeat for the first time in his life, even though Katou eventually does not even strike.

After the whole situation, Katou is taken back to the hospital. Dorian, who was severely injured in the fight with Doppo, is also being hospitalised. At one point the American prisoner unexpectedly leaves his hospital bed and goes to the room of Katou who sleeps unconscious. Dorian says it's a perfect chance to kill the young karate fighter, but he doesn't do it and jumps out the window leaving him alive.

Godlike Clash of the Kids Saga[]

Katou and Kaiou Retsu.

Katou appears at the end of the saga, and it turns out that he has recovered from the injuries, but received some scars after the murderous fight with the American convict. He tells Katsumi and Retsu that Yuujiro Hanma accepted the challenge from Baki. In the penultimate scene of this series, Katou is one of the people who comments on Baki and watches the young champion as he imagines he is fighting Yuujiro Hanma in the Underground Arena.


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.
  • The character is based on the real-life karateka named Kiyotaka Katou.