Kai Hiwatari (火渡カイ, Hiwatari Kai) is one of the main protagonists in the Beyblade anime and manga.
In the beginning of the anime, Kai is an introverted enigma, seldom speaking for the sake of conversation. Only when he has something truely valueable to say, he will speak it. This is usually in the form of "tough love" motivation or a tip for battle. Although he is still doing so by the end of Season Three, there is a lot of noticeable change in Kai's attitiude.Kai shows more of a mature attitude, his thinking calculated and methodic.
Throughout the series, Kai is shown as the rival of Takao Kinomiya, the show's lead character. He views Takao as Kai's only real challenge, seeing as he was the first to ever step up to Kai and defeat him. This rivalry still held strong throughout most of the first season, transforming into mutual respect then a strong friendship by the end of Season Three.
Season One (Bakuten Shoot!)
We first see Kai at the end of episode one. He appears after the second battle between Hiruta (Carlos) and Takao, where Takao had proved victorious. Kai then reveals himself as the leader of the Blade Sharks, the Beyblade gang to which Hiruta belongs. He punishes Hiruta for his poor performance against Takao, and challenges Takao to a battle, which Kai easily wins.
Kai does not appear much until the Regional Qualifier Tournament, where Kai is placed in Block B. He takes on Takao's companion Kyouju and easily beats him. After Kai wins his block, he battles Max who had won A Block. Despite gaining his Bit Beast Draciel at the end of the first battle, Kai still defeats Max. He then moves on to the final round to face Takao, who had just defeated Rei Kon in his semi-final match. The two fight hard, but Takao and his recently-aqquired Dragoon S come out on top. Kai is dumbfounded that Takao had defeated he, the former champion.
At the end of the tournament, Mr. Daitenji (Mr. Dickenson) announces that all those that had made it to the semi-finals- Kai, Takao, Rei, and Max- were chosen to represent Japan in the Beyblade World Championships. Despite Takao winning the tournament, Mr. Daitenji decides that Kai should be team captain.
Later, the team is sent to Hong Kong to participate in the Asian Championship. Kai leaves the team, who go searching for him, thinking he had rejected them. In truth, Kai was teaching them the strength of street bladers by leading them down an alleyway to fight. When Rei's old team, the White Tigers showed up, Kai took a back seat in the affair and throughout most of the early rounds of the Asian Championships, fighting his battles and no more. At the semi-finals, however, Kai finds himself stalling for the absent Rei and Takao by enlongating his battle until they arrived. Kai does not participate in the final round against the White Tigers.
After winning the Asian Championship, the team heads for the United States to fight in the American Championship in Las Vegas, Nevada. During their tour of the BBA research facility, they battle several of the bladers there, Kai catching on to the reason why they were being challenged to the battles: to record information on each of the bladers' skills. He also senses that Emily, a member of the All-Starz has particular interest in Kai's skills. During the American Championship, Kai is seen participating in more battles than in the Asian Championship, winning every time. Despite his increased participation, Kai does not battle in the final round.
With the Asian and American Championships behind them, the team heads to Europe en route to Russia for the World Championships. When they miss their boat, the team is stuck in London for the night. They are attacked by a blader named Cairo (Cenotaph), a member of a group called Team WHO. Kai defeats his mummy Bit Beast Sarcopholon with some trouble. As the team travels Europe by land and are met by Team WHO on several occaisions, Kai tends to stay out of the fights. That is, until the final showdown with this group in Paris, where Kai defeats the entire team with his new Dranzer F blade.
After a few run-ins with a team called the Majestics, Kai finally battles Johnny in team captain Ralf's castle. Suprisingly, Kai loses to Johnny. Kai, furious, challenges Johnny to another battle at the rematch a few days later. This time, Kai wins.
When they arrive at Moscow, they are taken to a Beyblade training facility owned by Borcloff. This is the same training facility where Kai once trained. After he comes to the realization of this, Kai takes a powerful Beyblade, Black Dranzer, from Borcloff and leaves his team. Kai single-handedly defeats the All-Starz, absorbing the team members' Bit Beasts. Kai also defeats every member of the White Tigers one-by-one, absorbing their Bit beasts as well. On a frozen lake, Kai challenges his former teammates, save Max. For a long time, Kai seems to have the upper hand, but Max parachutes onto the lake with his new Draciel F. Takao also uses Kai's old Dranzer, and this duo is enough to defeat Kai and Black Dranzer. After the battle, Kai falls through the ice and into the frozen river. His teammates, however, rescue him.
Now blading for his old team again, Kai takes on Sergei of team Neo Borg (Simply Team Borg at this time), losing despite his knowledge of the team. However, this loss meant nothing as Takao defeated Yuriy to win the Championship.
Season Two (Beyblade 2002/V-Force)
Kai, who has given up Beyblade, is now going to a private school. One his classmates, Wyatt, recognizes him as a member of Team BBA and immediatly begins questioning him about his past and makes offers to battle. Kai ignores him for some time until Wyatt steals Kai's Dranzer F from his Beyblade hideaway and uses it to challenge Dunga. Dunga defeats Wyatt easily, which causes Kai to take on Dunga with the blade Wyatt had just used. The match ends in a draw. After Dunga runs away, Kai decides to return to blading to battle this "worthy" opponent again.
Kai returns to Takao's town to find out that he wasn't the only one attacked by a mysterious blader. This group is later reavealed to be known as the Saint Shields.
The now-reunited team is invited to fight a team using artificial Bit Beasts named Team Psykick, the second team that has been giving Team BBA trouble. On the way to the battle, the team's van is gassed. When they wake up, they find themselves not in a Bey arena,but on an island. In order to better their chances of escaping, the team splits up, Hiromi, Kyouju, and Kai heading for a lighthouse to hopefully establish connection to the outside world. on their way, they are met by a blader named Figel, who challenges Kai. Kai defeats him and the group presses on. The group is then rescued by Mr. Daitenji and Grandpa Kinomiya.
Once getting off the island, Kai is challenged again by Dunga. The two fight in a battle that ends in yet another draw, yet this is enough for Dr. B's henchmen, who were secretly watching the battle to gather information on Dranzer. It is later at a Beyblade tournament that the team comes to the realization that Team Psykick is now using synthetic copies of their Bit Beasts. Because of this, Kyouju and Hiromi set a strict training regimine for the group. During this training, the Saint Shields attack the group. During this time, Kai helps Hiromi to see Bit Beasts for the first time.
To test Cyber Dranzer, Dr. B recruits Wyatt. Wyatt was sent to do battle with Kai, but Dunga stepped in his place. Wyatt and Dunga fought, Cyber Dranzer proving to be too much for the inexperienced Wyatt. Dunga wins the battle, and Wyatt goes into shock. It is later revealed that he died (This detail is left out of the Nelvana dub). Because of this, Kai begins to feel guilty for Wyatt's death.
A few days later, Hiromi decides to have a cookout to relieve some of the boys' stress. in the middle of the cookout, however, Grandpa Kinomiya is dragged into the water by a rather large fish. With the help of another group of bladers, they save him. When the group finds out that these are the candidates chosen by Dr. B to "Get the job done," the team minus Kai goes to find out the truth, which their assumptions are confirmed.
The team is then invited to Gideon's battle tower to do battle with the new Team Psykick.Kai sees this as his chance to get revenge for Wyatt. However, this vengence is turned against him during Kai's battle with Gouki, where Kai begins seeing images of him fighting Wyatt. Eventually, Kai overcomes the visions and defeats Gouki. After the group escapes the battle tower with the former Team Psykick, the groups make amends with one another, Kai shown grappling hands with Gouki.
After the events concerning the Bit Beast rock in New York City (See Max Mizuhara for details), Kai is not significantly involved in investigating Dr. Zagart's involvement with the rock. That is, until he fights one of Dr. K (an associate of Dr. Zagart)'s bladers, Jack. Kai defeats Jack after he reveals his wind-controlling Bit Beast.
In a last-ditch effort to take their Bit Beasts, the Saint Shields trap the team in an amusement park. Kai is attacked by Dunga and Jusuf on an abandoned roller coaster. Rei later joins the battle to even the odds, leaving Kai to face Dunga. Both win their respective battles, leaving Takao to fight Ozma, a battle which he wins.After this, the Saint Shields decide to give up their pursuit of the team's Bit Beasts, feeling they are in capable hands.
The team then prepares for the World Championship, where Kai and Rei are paired up to represent half of Team BBA, Max and Takao the other pair. Before the tournament, however, Kai is challenged by a duo known as King and Queen, who wish to battle Kai for his Attack Ring. The two team up on Kai, tearing his Dranzer V apart. Due to this, the two deem Kai's blade useless and decide to not take their prize. This upsets Kai, who seeks to fight them again with his new Dranzer V2. He finds them, but before their battle ends, the duo disappears.
Kai does not participate in another important battle until the semi-finals, where he can Rei face Zeo and Gordo. After Rei's tie match with Gordo, Kai faces Zeo and his blade, Burning Kerberous. Kerberous proves to be too much for Kai, who loses not only the battle but his Bit Beast. Dranzer is later returned to him after Takao defeats Zeo in the final round.
Season Three (Beyblade G-Revolution)
As the season begins, we see Team BBA begin to break apart, Max joining his mother's team, The PPB All-Starz and Rei his old team, White Tigers X. The team is then dwindled down to Takao, Daichi, and Kai.
At the preliminary matches to decide the tag-team pairs for the World Championship, Kai faces Daichi in the B block finals. Throughout most of the battle, Kai does little, but soon enough, he defeats Daichi in one fell stroke. This sets the pair for Team BBA as Kai and Takao, Daichi and Kyouju serving as alternates.
After watching Max and Rei fight their respective final battles to determine their teams' pairs, Kai begins to understand why the two left Takao. Kai begins to see this as his chance to finally take Takao on again, one-on-one. He then decides to quit Team BBA and join the reformed Neo Borg team, Yuriy as his teammate.
During his first round against Team BBA, Kai fights Daichi and, acting as uninterested as his preliminary battle with Daichi, loses his match. This leads to Neo Borg losing the round, Daichi defeating Yuriy in the tiebreaker. Kai then helps win the next round against the now-hated PPB All-Starz, defeating Max in the first match and Rick in the tiebreaker. Kai makes a show of his sportsmanship by silencing the booing crowd as Max stepped up to the dish for the first match of the round.
In his next round, Kai and Yuriy defeat the Barthez Soldiers, Kai defeating Mihaeru after he refused to use an illgally modified Beyblade given to him by Barthez. At this point, the Barthez Soldiers made their decision to stop cheating and take their loss. The next round brings an intense battle between Rei and Kai after Li's loss to Yuriy. Although weakened, Rei came back against Kai, bringing him close to defeat as well. However, Kai comes out on top, Neo Borg advancing to the final round, receiving a bye and not having to face either Team BBA or F Sangre.
In the final round, Kai and Takao face off after a match between Daichi and Yuriy with a tie as a result. Both Kai and Takao are tired to begin the fights, and both carry new blades into battle, Kai with his Dranzer GT and Takao with his Dragoon GT. Kai and Takao face each other with as much strength as they can muster, tearing both the Beystadium and the BBA arena apart. Kai and Takao's blades fall at the same time, resulting in yet another tie. Because of the state of the stadium and for the safety of the audience, Mr. Daitenji insists that the two bladers leave this match a tie. Kai and Takao, both outraged by this suggestion, begin to protest, several of the bladers in the crowd joining in. Finally, Mr. Daitenji decides to allow a tiebreaker match between Kai and Takao. The battle is as fierce as the last one, ending in a standoff between the two rivals. They both begin to fall, but Kai is the first to fall, resulting in Team BBA winning the Beyblade World Championship for the third time in a row.
Kai is not seen for some time until the announcement of the BEGA Justice 5 tournament. He decides to enter a tournament that will determine who will become a member of the BEGA team that will take on Team BBA in the tournament. He sees joining BEGA as yet another chance to fight Takao and possibly win this time. Also, he wishes to use this as an opportunity to fight Brooklyn, a Beyblade prodigy being trained under Takao's brother, Hitoshi. Kai gets his chance to fight this new blader in one of the final matches of the team determination tournament. Brooklyn overwhelms Kai, breaking him mentally and physically with his Beyblade Zeus and its devastating special attack, King of Darkness.
Kai returns to the Beystadium one last time as Team BBA's fifth member, seeking revenge for losing to Brooklyn. The match begins to look as bleak as the last one, Brooklyn matching Kai move for move, calling once again upon Zeus' destructive attacks. However, Kai, bent on destroying Brooklyn for himself, Yuriy, and his team, draws enough power from Dranzer to defeat Brooklyn, his vengence taken. This comes with a cost, however, as Dranzer MS and the Dranzer itself are destroyed. After the tournament, though, we see Kai with Dranzer, showing that he and his Bit Beast companion were not completely separated.
-Manga section coming soon-