Despite the many differences between Kageyama and Todoroki, those two are as well much more similar than you think.
Nissa already wrote about both characters shortly in her BNHA Analysts Shuffle and Haikyuu Sentinel Shuffle, but this will not be about their personality types but a general overview about their similarities, Nissa did a full personality analysis on Kageyama and sometime soon one on Todoroki will follow as well.
To not make you wait any longer let’s get started with our favourite stoic boys and what connects them!
When we take a look at both Kageyama and Todoroki the first thing that someone would guess is that compared to their abilities that both of them are pretty quick-witted.
Sadly, this is not the case…
Academically speaking Kageyama is not a student that succeeded in it, showing that he wasn’t able to get into Shiratorizawa due to his bad grades unlike Todoroki who is ranked 5th in his class. Yet this is not the aspect showing how dense or quick-witted someone is since grades are not an indicator of what a person is really capable of.
Both Kageyama and Todoroki are unaware of the things happening around them, as they do not realize how the other party might feel when they do or say something. Both are shown to be very observant and have a quick decision-making mind when it comes to their speciality, but everything out of that area is just beyond their understanding.
For example we have Kageyama who often says what is in his mind or how he perceives things not thinking about what the other person might feel about it, which later backlashes at him and even surprises him in a way why that person would be possibly mad.
One case would be that he is not aware of the fact that he hit Oikawa’s soft spots and continued to aggravate and hurt him until Oikawa had lashed out on him, which made him think that Oikawa has a bad personality yet he was the one unintentionally pushing his buttons due to his dense demeanor and inconsiderate way of handling someone else’s emotions, another example would be at the beginning with Hinata.
In Todoroki’s case this applies too, where he doesn’t understand what a person really might feel due to his actions or words. His examples would be firstly Bakugo, who he obviously and indirectly looked down upon by not giving him the fight he demanded and due to him taking everything literally while Bakugo tries to get his attention Todoroki does not react the way others want him to since he is not aware of their emotional state.
Secondly, Yaoyorozu and the practical exam towards the end of season two. While she had a lot of self-doubts after losing miserably in the sport festival arc, she still had a lot on her mind and wanted to help Todoroki as much as she could yet he didn’t really understand the fact that she needed confirmation from someone she respected, here Todoroki.
Very late when they were about to fail the exam and saw the obvious fear and anxiety that Yaoyorozu held he thought back on her behaviour and understood that she had something to say.
We have them in every medium and in our real world too, the kind of people who have overwhelming abilities that only get even more overwhelming the further they rise.
And today we have two of them, the volleyball prodigy and the one who wields two powerful quirks effortlessly.
As shown it doesn’t take them a lot of time to improve vehemently when they actually focus and put their mind on a certain goal. Unlike their peers they set their life for that very goal, making it the only thing that matters to them when it’s endangered in a way.
Todoroki is easier to spot in that category, as the son of the number two hero Endeavor who got into UA through recommendations, all eyes are fixed on him as soon as he enters the stage. Being able to use both ice and fire quirks that he inherited from his parents makes him one of the most watched students that people expect a lot from.
Yet his quirk are not the only thing that makes him a genius since it’s something he inherited but his way of using it in all kinds of ways, continuously over a large period of time and on top of that he moves while planning out a strategy in his mind are the assets that make Todoroki so astonishing. It’s not that he sits down and is amazing just like that, he puts much effort mentally and physically to improve and those that in a speed that is unmatched to his other peers, as he started to use his fire quirk very late he still was able to control it in a short period of time and even started adjusting it for special moves.
On the other hand we have Kageyama, the one known for his eerily accurate tosses that he can adjust and calculate so quickly that other people just can’t believe that especially someone at his age could do such a hard thing.
Iwaizumi Hajime, his former senior in Kitagawa Daiichi who used to play in the same team as him, described Kageyama as a prodigy that surfaced and that his sense for things was overwhelmingly spectacular in Chapter 60.
Even Oikawa mentioned to Iwaizumi at the end of the practice match in season one episode six that when it comes to tosses he cannot match Tobio, which means the best setter of the prefecture sees much more potential in his junior that he is sure that someday he will surpass him, even early that is.
Many others have commended that Kageyama would also be the only one who could pull off the freak duo quick attack that is only possible due to his perfect timing and pin-pointing, he is also able to apply new techniques he sees very quickly as seen when he replicated Oikawa’s dump. Aoba Johsai’s coach as well explained that he wanted Kageyama to join their school to have him in his team but also see many flaws in him, yet he said that at some point Kageyama’s natural abilities are simply unmatched.
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Now let’s come to the part where it’s about their social skills and the relationships they have started with.
Which let’s say… is not as astonishing as their ability because if you take both of them only in view on that aspect they surely lack a lot of it, one could also call them socially inept.
Both Kageyama and Todoroki are High Schoolers in their first year, despite their worlds being completely different and also their backgrounds there are many comparable aspects that makes you wonder how they could have survived in society if not for their skills?
Why would I proclaim such a thing you might ask?
Well, Kageyama and Todoroki may seem like well-liked and popular characters among the fandom yet in the anime they are a part of a big society in which they are seen like every other person. We on the other hand watch both their journeys as a third person or a bystander.
Watching them closely and especially how they interact with the people around them gives the most insight into how socially capable those two are separated from their usual role they have to play as either setter or the son of number two hero Endeavor.
First of all both of them seem to have bad relationships with other people before they actually started to develop through other characters, for example Hinata and Oikawa, or Deku and Inasa. One big indicator would be the nickname Kageyama was given since middle school King.
While others think that such a nickname might honor him in a way, or like Oikawa described in chapter 53 he thought it was an esteemed nickname, it turned out that as he went to watch one of his matches he saw the real meaning behind it.
And also the strengths that are also his weaknesses, the solitary king who rules the court by himself wanting everyone to match his pace instead of considering to match theirs, others even called him dictator.
In the end he even was left-behind by his team just to toss… to nobody behind him since his pressuring and egotistical behaviour concluded that after a long time of trying to keep up with it since he is so skilled they finally gave up after becoming fed up with his worsening dictatorship on them.
Which is also seen as he entered Karasuno High and told Hinata he will only toss to people he thinks worthy and important in order to win, making a lot of enemies from the get-go in his new fresh High School start.
In some of the matches it’s seen that he and Tsukishima are not on good terms either since the former is someone who doesn’t like to be bossed around and the latter gets easily provoked by him. He doesn’t understand simple social cues either and takes most of the things as either insults or ignores them since he doesn’t understand them until his seniors have to explain to him how he should work out things and what he does need to improve, not skill-wise but in his communication and interactions.
On the other hand we have Todoroki who is just like Kageyama but not as worse as him in that aspect. He simply didn’t care about the people around him as he focussed on himself rather than social interactions and playing friends as he called it in the school festival arc.
Not being able to recognize other people’s feelings as he turned away from the people around him and rather was stuck in his own world he tried to fight in.
Yet even later when he had a new fresh start after the sport festival arc, it’s seen that Todoroki is still socially inept in many ways, he doesn’t understand social cues as well sometimes he wonders what he said to others which could have made them angry.
He takes most of the things people say to him literally as he even misunderstood Midoriya and Lida when they were together at the hospital, blaming himself and wondering if he is cursed already wanting to distance himself from them after they joke around about their arms.
But thankfully they found the right people to make them develop more into people who try to understand those around them.
Pride and a narrow-mind connects those two as well.
Ever saw a person so stubborn and lost in their own world and goals that they do not even realize where they are heading to or what is happening around them?
Two examples of exactly two people who match that description, Kageyama Tobio and Todoroki Shoto.
In that both of them really don’t differ in any way beside the implementation of how it is presented.
Especially towards the beginning of both serieses that character-trait is depicted heavily, as we see both of them fixated on winning, surpassing others and becoming better over a short period of time making them even trample over other people’s feelings directly and indirectly.
They live in their own world where they have to solve their problems all by themselves and see everyone else as either a stepping stone or obstruction.
Stubbornness can be good in some situations but in their case it’s a critical condition that is criticised by close people and strangers, since they start to lose themselves in their bad habits as they recklessly do as they think is the right way to proceed.
Kageyama would be a prime example as he even says those words harshly to his peers that if he could, he would set, toss, spike and receive the ball all by himself. He also criticises others and deems them as slackers or not being serious just because they cannot match his skills instead of trying to widen his perspective on matters.
There is also his strong sense of pride that doesn’t let things go so simply one example would be that he immediately tried to replicate Oikawa when he scored a point in a way that would humiliate him, in his eyes.
Another scene was when Hinata proposed to try to hit the ball by himself and learn to spike on his own instead of relying on Kageyama only, which made him irritated as he rejected the idea instantly, telling him their former way of handling the quick attack was efficient enough.
Todoroki as mentioned doesn’t really differ as he is fixated on beating his father by becoming the best hero with only his ice quirks, rendering him to only see revenge and rage in everything he does considering his quirks. It leaves him to forget the wonderful things that his mother told him and also made him lose the sense of himself. Until Deku had to wake him up and tell him the most obvious thing which he couldn’t see in front of him.
But that’s not the only scene where we could see that trait clearly, another one would be at the Provisional Hero License Exam. Inasa who is someone Todoroki couldn’t understand at all and disliked due to him comparing Shoto to Endeavor made him lose himself in his former habits of showing him that he isn’t like his father at all. It concluded into him not getting his license as he lost his senses and even caused the people around him to be in danger due to his reckless behaviour.
Connected to the former paragraph, the seemingly silent pair has their own storm going on if you push the right buttons.
Despite being usually very calm and silent about certain things they can become easily aggravated in other situations.
Just like mentioned before Todoroki only needs to hear his father’s name to become a bit louder or even erupt into either a statue of ice or an inferno of flames like seen in season two and three.
Which goes as well when he is excited and in adrenaline he can sound much louder and aggressive in comparison to his usual self.
For Kageyama this goes as soon as Hinata pushes his buttons, he immediately shoots some moron or dumbass when he is around and does anything close to messing up or provoking him. Tsukishima on the other hand is very smart in how he provokes Kageyama, mostly leaving him only angry or boiling inside instead.
Another person who would be able to accomplish that would be Oikawa when they are competing, showing a much more childish side as he has little fights with his senior, as seen in season two as both of them fought over the ball that has fallen to the ground, yet Oikawa is rather someone who challenges him and scratches on his pride and ego.
There is always that one character you watch in the background, because while everyone in the panel or scene is doing something much more interesting, you will find that character doing irrelevant stuff that seems unlikely for his/her character.
And our pair for today are two of those characters, that when there is nothing to do for them in the main scene they are doing their own business not caring what others might think of them.
Both of them are very serious characters, who seem cold and stoic on the outside even aggressive sometimes but as soon as the attention of the events is derived from them or there is a little pause in-between scenes you can spot their little dorky and cute sides, that shows yes those boys are still young and innocent highschoolers.
While they share their love for food, secretly snacking in the background or even having a full lunch in the midst of a serious talk between other characters, those two don’t even blink an eye turning away from the attention.
Kageyama just eats an Onigiri after a really serious scene where Oikawa had a panic attack in middle school, the scene obviously revolves more on Oikawa’s perception and fear explaining a bit the important role Iwaizumi has in his life as the person who brings him back on earth. Yet the other important person who caused the whole scene, Kageyama, moves to the background eating his snack casually as if nothing happened.
Same goes when Saeko, Tanaka’s sister, gives them a crazy drive to Tokyo.
We already saw in the early anime episodes that Kageyama sleeps most of the time in his classes or when nothing important is going on for him, but in Saeko’s car he just took the back rear for a midday nap and afterwards eats a snack half-asleep while she is drifting like crazy.
Since the focus was more on Saeko and Hinata talking about the little giant, Kageyama seemed to take the opportunity to move his out-of-character moments to the background.
Very similar to Todoroki Shoto, there is not much difference as he does basically the same as Kageyama. Even when he is only passively in the whole scene he just silently eats and watches his peers making most of the decisions like seen in their dorm lives and also sleeping on train or bus rides where most of his classmates are having fun meanwhile.
As seen when they made a plan to save Bakugo, Todoroki could easily enjoy a lunch and take a little nap in such dire situations.
In the manga it’s a running gag that when he is not much mentioned in the main events that you can spot him in a corner visibly or unconsciously doing one of those two things.
An adorable side-view of their usually serious and seemingly adult-like character.
Last but not least, the ever-repeating rival relationship essence for complex characters.
The difference here is that both of them are already better than their supposed rivals Deku (and later Bakugo), and Oikawa.
You might think that when your ability level is already top-notch you might not need to worry about your rivals who you can surpass any time needed, but that is wrong in both cases.
Kageyama and Todoroki work even harder and as they work harder they cannot unsee the other strengths of their rivals which makes them so different.
Ability is nice and good, but there are other factors that matter in both a Volleyball player and a soon-to-be Prohero, which they both lack and see clearly in their rivals.
Personality-wise and in the ways they handle things their rivals are still unmatched in their eyes.
For Todoroki, Deku is someone he cannot reach yet when it comes to the true essence of a hero and his problem-solving thoughts, as well as his overly caring side for others that he admires so much. Clearly Todoroki is stronger than Deku physically and he already defeated him in many ways but he still thinks that there is a lot to learn from him.
Later on he even sees qualities in Bakugo who does take his hero path seriously and respects any opponent that comes his way, treating them like a threat which is the biggest respect one can give. Todoroki himself never saw his opponents but only his father in front of him which leaded him to overlook his allies and enemies, and Bakugo who even took Ochako serious when everyone else didn’t and clearly told him he should look what’s in front of him became one of the other rivals he had set his eyes on.
Kageyama has his one and only rival Oikawa, which he looks up to since middle school and thinks of someone he cannot compare to. Despite Oikawa already stating that Tobio will surpass him one day and that it might be sooner than he would expect, Kageyama still fears his senior and thinks the exact opposite.
As stated before Kageyama is unmatched ability-wise and in season two he even won against Oikawa, but as he saw Ushijima that seemed a bit intimidating he clearly said that he not afraid of anyone beside Oikawa, which is a big indicator that he still thinks of Oikawa as a big threat and rival that should be feared.
Oikawa is the kind of setter Kageyama aspires to be, he has other traits that Kageyama watches closely and is amazed by, one would be his quick and astonishing adaptability as he mentioned he is like a ruler who rules over his army.
When Kageyama needed advice he turned to Oikawa despite his pride and ego, fully aware that Oikawa might drop comments that would make fun of him.
In Kageyama’s case his rival is in a complex way his mentor and senior at the same time, as well a former teammate and fellow setter which connects those two not by only rivalry how others might think but in many more ways.
What do you think?
Did you see any similarities that I might have missed out or do you think some might not apply in your opinion?
Drop it down in the comments, I would be eager to read them!
As again I might leave you this time, but I will return again with another tea,