My Favorite Characters In The Battle Royale Novel
Battle Royale is set in an alternative world, similar to our own except that Japan is a dictatorship with “The Program”. A middle school class is picked to be a part of The Program where they fight to the death.
When I was reading The Hunger Games, it sparked my interest to get my hands on The Battle Royale novel. I found that I liked the narrative of Battle Royale compared to The Hunger Games. The narrative isn’t stuck on first person, so you can experience the others viewpoints. If you don’t like a certain character, then you can hope the next chapter to be about another person. Here are a few of my favorite students from the book. Warning, there are spoilers.
Kazou Kiriyama is one of the main antagonists in the book. He had a brain injury that caused him not to feel emotions, which makes him the perfect candidate for the program. He indiscriminately kills any classmate that he comes across, and probably the only student that actively hunts for them. In two separate occasions, he had his back turned, and he managed to kill his stalkers without even looking at them. That is horrifying, yet very impressive. I felt bad for him though, it’s not his fault he was born without emotion. Before he was put into the program he clearly attempted to feel something, he painted and played music, but ended up disposing his work even though it was beautiful. In his death I wanted him to have a moment, and to finally feel emotions as he’s dying, a tear or two as his life slips away but that didn’t happen novel, but I heard that something similar happened in the manga version.
Shogo Kawada. This guy has the worst luck in the world. This is his second time “randomly picked” to be part of the program. Obviously, Shogo was the winner the first time. He accompanies and helps the two main characters. I would’ve preferred that Shogo was the protagonist instead of Shuya, who is a bit of an idiot, and Noriko, who is dead weight most of the time.
Out of all the deaths, Takago Chigusa made me tear up the most. I felt for her because she fought so hard for her life, and showed so many different sides of her personality in a short amount of time. Her chapter was one of my favorite chapters in the book. In the program she gets confronted by a classmate that threatens to rape her, but she handles the situation so well. She gets hit by a cross-bow and makes the situation funny by complaining about a scar on her face, rather than her leg injury. Even with her injuries she’s able to kill the rapist in the most satisfying and goriest way possible. Her victory is short lived because she gets shot, she plays dead for about half an hour, and her best friend finds her. She dies beautifully in the arms of her best friend, and former crush. She’s my favorite female character, next to...
Mitsuko Souma. This girl already had a bunch of issues before being a part of the program. At the tender age of 15, she already prostitutes herself, forces others into prostitution, steals, and gets into fights. Ironically in the novel she has “a face of an angel”, she uses her looks to seduce, manipulate, and kill her classmates. She has the highest kill count amongst all the female students. Of course being a girl with issues, she had a troubled pass; basically every man in her life, starting when she was 9-years-old has either molested or raped her. As she’s dying, she contemplates on her actions, and her reasoning for them. It’s described quite poetically how everybody in her life “took pieces of her, instead of helping her”. She is my ideal crazy antagonist.
There a few other minor character that are worth noting but this post will be novel length if I do that. I highly recommend the novel of Battle Royale. I hope you can get your hands on a copy soon.