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I didn't really get along with you from the start! And that's why next time, we will definitely win!

Yūtarō Kindaichi (Japanese: 金田一 (きんだいち) 勇太郎 (ゆうたろう) Kindaichi Yūtarō), is a first-year student at Aoba Johsai and plays on the boys' volleyball team as one of the starting middle blockers.

In November of 2018, he is a college student and a middle blocker for the Tamaden Elephants, a professional volleyball team in Division 2 of Japan's V. League. He is planning to be an electrician in Saitama once he graduates.

Appearance

Kindaichi is a young teen who's quite tall for his age, being the tallest member on the Aoba Johsai team as a first-year. He has dark hair that sticks straight up which has earned him the nickname "turnip/onion-head" by Hinata who associates his silhouette with a turnip or onion when meeting him again by Aoba Johsai's toilets; though it's implied that Kindaichi himself is unaware of the meaning behind the nickname. His face seems to be set in a scowl most of the time, though it's more of a passive one rather than an intimidating glare like Kageyama's.

While most of his appearance has remained the same after the timeskip, his hair is noticeably shorter and the lower half has been shaved.

Personality

When playing volleyball, Kindaichi is open to feedback and willing to adjust his play to match his setter unless he feels the demands are unreasonable[1]. In the latter case, Kindaichi is not afraid to express his frustration and stand up for himself. He is also shown to be quite competitive during a game, especially when faced against Hinata and Kageyama.

Kindaichi is generally good-natured and gets along well with his teammates. He is very respectful toward his upperclassmen, especially Oikawa and Iwaizumi. In contrast to his tough exterior, he appears to be quite sensitive. He is deeply affected by the middle school feud with Kageyama while the others have moved on. It is implied that he feels responsible for their failed partnership despite having tried his best to match Kageyama's demanding tosses[2]. Even after their estrangement, Kindaichi still cares for his former teammate and has asked Hinata about Kageyama's well-being.

Background

Kindaichi attended Kitagawa Daiichi Junior High and was on the volleyball team with Kunimi and Kageyama. He and Kageyama were partners on the court which resulted in Kindaichi shouldering the brunt of Kageyama's tyrant king tendencies and was often berated for failing to match up to the setter's impossibly fast tosses[3]. Kindaichi objected to Kageyama's selfish play style, but Kageyama failed to acknowledge his teammates' complaints, believing that his way was the best[4]. Eventually, the team became fed up with Kageyama's lack of cooperation and refused to respond to his tosses in the middle of a game. He and Kunimi contributed to Kageyama being benched by voicing their complaints to the coach[5].

Plot

Hinata S1E1.png

Kindaichi first appears during the junior high volleyball tournament with the Kitagawa Daiichi Junior High boys volleyball team. During the warm-up before their first match, Kindaichi gets scolded by Kageyama for not being quick enough when attempting a quick attack. During the game, Kindaichi is mostly seen attempting to spike Kageyama's sets but finds difficulty in this since he cannot match the speed of the sets and is scolded by Kageyama several times for being too slow. Kindaichi is able to block Hinata a few times and even get a one-touch late in the second set. Kitagawa would easily win the match against Yukigaoka.

Karasuno High Team Formation Arc

Kindaichi plays in the practice match between Aoba Johsai and Karasuno as one of the starting middle blockers. When the Karasuno team arrived at Aoba Johsai, Kindaichi was being informed of the team by Yahaba and they are both startled when Tanaka appears and warns them about speaking badly of his team. Kindaichi spots Kageyama among the Karasuno players and tries to mock him about having already taken reign of his new team only for Kageyama not to react how he expected.

Hinata kindaichi yahaba S1E6.png

Before the match, Kindaichi met with Hinata. At first they got along when they reveal that they've found difficulty dealing with Kageyama's harsh behavior but they soon differ in opinions when it comes to his sets; Kindaichi having found them extremely difficult while Hinata says that Kageyama's sets are great. Kindaichi then told Hinata that he was just a pawn for Kageyama to use until a time came when Kageyama would be done with him.

When the game begins, Kindaichi is able to block Tanaka's first spike attempt and gain Seijoh the first point. Thanks to Hinata sucumbing to Kindaichi's earlier intimidation and making numerous mistakes throughout the set, Seijoh was able to reach set point rather quickly. They were able to win when Hinata sent his serve directly to the back of Kageyama's head. Kindaichi would tease Hinata about this by asking to be taught how to do it.

When Hinata is back to playing like normal, Kindaichi finds himself having trouble keeping up with Hinata's speed and reflexes. When Hinata and Kageyama first attempted their super quick but failed, Kindaichi is surprised to hear Kageyama take the blame for the set not being how Hinata needed it. Like the rest of his team, he is taken by surprise at seeing the super quick succeed for the first time. During the next rally, Kindaichi spots Hinata appearing to attempt another super quick and tries to block him only for Kageyama to set to Tanaka instead and make Kindaichi realize that Hinata was being used as a decoy.

During a time-out, Kindaichi listens as Irihata points out Hinata has been doing the super quick with his eyes shut and Kageyama has changed his playing style in order to accommodate all of Karasuno's hitters. The realization that Kageyama has changed to work with others leaves Kindaichi in a state of surprise. When the game continues, Karasuno is eventually able to win the second set which frustrates Kindaichi. Not long after the set ended, Tōru Oikawa arrives. Kindaichi would continue to try blocking Karasuno's spikers and even gets a few points back from his blocks and spikes. After Oikawa was able to land a few service ace's, Kindaichi would attempt to get a clean spike in when he thought he had no blockers to stop him. He was quickly surprised to see that Hinata had somehow caught up to him and managed to deflect his spike which eventually led to Karasuno winning the game.

Kindaichi Kageyama S1E7.png

After the match, Kageyama would approach Kindaichi but Kindaichi prevented him from trying to apologize for his behavior in middle school and states that he will always see Kageyama as the king of the court he was during middle school and the opponent he wants to beat most. He states that he will one day beat Kageyama and is surprised to hear Kageyama make the same promise but refers to the team instead of himself. When Kunimi approaches, Kindaichi explains how Kageyama had always made things about himself but is now seeing himself as part of a team. Kunimi is quick to hit him before he goes too deep into his thoughts of possibly having already lost to Kageyama.

Interhigh

While warming up for the match, Oikawa apologizes for setting too high, and Kindaichi nervously replies. Following this, Kindaichi stops Iwaizumi from hitting Oikawa after insulting him. Soon after, Kindaichi looks out for what Kageyama is about to do, and looks to his right. However, Kageyama immediately turns the other way and sets to Hinata, who scores before Kindaichi can even jump. Kindaichi apologizes to Oikawa for this, but Oikawa does not blame him and tells him that they’ll figure it out eventually. Following this, he tries to sympathize with him by saying that seeing Hinata having stolen Kindaichi’s spot as Kageyama’s partner must have hurt him and then taunts his junior. However, he then lightly pushes Kindaichi and tells him to have faith and fly.

During the next rally, Kindaichi confronts Hinata once more but is able to score against him. Daichi thinks that Kindaichi’s jump has improved, but quickly brushes away the thought. Not long after, Kindaichi serves multiple times at the place where the setter would be moving forward out of the back row, with directions from Oikawa, and gains Aoba Johsai quite a few points. Shortly after, Kindaichi scores against Hinata and goes into the next rally to ruthlessly block Tanaka.

When Kindaichi surpasses Karasuno’s blocks by going over them again and Kageyama gets angry at him for doing so, Oikawa scoffs to himself since that’s always been Kindaichi’s strong point. When Aoba Johsai is one point away from winning, Kindaichi tries to score against Hinata, but ultimately fails[6]. However, in the end, thanks to Watari, Aoba Johsai manages to win the set. Following this, Kindaichi is grateful for Watari and is relieved since Karasuno was about to win the rally. During the second set, Oikawa notices Kindaichi starting to be able to read blocks, which flatters him. A few rallies later, Kindaichi notices that Karasuno has been attacking Aoba Johsai from the left for quite some time, and he thinks that this rally would be the best time for them to trick a quick attack right in the center, and this is when he jumps to block, making his predictions correct.

During the third set, Kindaichi tells himself that he wouldn’t be outclassed by Hinata and jumps up to block him, ultimately winning Aoba Johsai the match. After this, Aoba Johsai all congratulate Kindaichi[7].

In the final round of the tournament, Aoba Johsai faced off against the reigning champion team of the prefecture, Shiratorizawa Academy. During the match, Kindaichi was able to score a few points and was one of three blockers trying to stop Ushijima at the end of the game. Ushijima easily powered through the triple block which resulted in Aoba Johsai losing the match and being knocked out of the tournament.

Spring High Preliminary Arc

AobaJohsaiS2E14.png

As Kyōtani comes back to the volleyball club, Kindaichi witnesses first hand how Kyōtani is not fond of his upperclassmen and bluntly makes rude comments on their loss against Shiratorizawa Academy. Yahaba explains to Kindaichi that despite Kyōtani being good in middle school, he was extremely rude and had no sense of sportsmanship, which reminds Kindaichi that Kyōtani attended Minami Daisan.

Aoba Johsai vs Date Tech

As Aoba Johsai plays against Date Tech, Kindaichi becomes annoyed at being blocked by Aone[8]. When Date's new setter, Koganegawa, attempts a setter dump, Kindaichi tries to block it but Koganegawa's reach was high enough that he was able to get the ball over the block.

Kindaichi is soon able to get a one-touch on Futakuchi's spike although Date Tech would claim the point in the end when Oikawa was blocked. Kindaichi would again attempt to block Koganegawa when he tried another setter dump but the setter was once more able to get the ball over the block. Kindaichi would be able to get a counter attack past Aone. Aone would regain the lost point when he is able to get a spike past Kindaichi thanks to Koganegawa's high set.

For the rest of the set, Kindaichi continues trying to block Date Tech's attackers and trying to stop Koganegawa anytime he is near the net. Seijoh was eventually able to win the set thanks to Iwaizumi.

Aoba Johsai vs Karasuno

Jealous Karasuno has another female manager

Prior to the match starting, Yahaba points out to Kindaichi that the Karasuno team has gained another female manager. Like Yahaba, Kindaichi becomes annoyed at seeing this but does not copy his upperclassmen's ruse of attempting to speak to Yachi. During the first rally, Kindaichi successfully blocks Hinata and assumes Kageyama isn’t able to set as he bumps the ball but is surprised when seeing Nishinoya toss the ball in his place. Shortly after, Kindaichi is able to block Hinata once more, which throws him off guard. Despite being successful during his first attempts, Hinata gets past his block with his quick set right after. Matsukawa would soon tell him to prepare to defend for a line shot and Kindaichi successfully receives Hinata’s upcoming one. Moreover, he gets inspired by his senior to attempt making Hinata point his shots in their desired direction.

Near the end of the set, Kindaichi is about to get set to by Oikawa, but Kyōtani suddenly barges in and Kindaichi falls to the ground, shocked. When Iwaizuimi punches Kyōtani for his action being dangerous, Kindaichi assures him that he’s fine. When Oikawa notices Kindaichi worrying in the next rally, he tells him not to be worried when being paired with Kyōtani because he isn’t always a ‘mad dog’. After Kyōtani manages to score three times in a row, Oikawa fools the blockers by setting to Kindaichi rather than Kyōtani. Later on, Kindaichi keeps failing his blocks. Iwaizumi notices that he’s getting tensed and tells him to calm down. Additionally, he suggests focusing on gaining the next point rather than focusing on the ones they lost. Right in the next rally, gets past Karasuno with ease and he gets congratulated by his teammates.

Shortly after, Oikawa serves, but Daichi is able to receive it. In an effort to win the rally, Kindaichi puts his hand up to prevent it from falling to the ground in blocking movement. In the very same rally, Kindaichi seems to be used as a decoy for Kyōtani, but Iwaizumi appears behind them and scores. During the third set, Oikawa sets for Kindaichi and after scoring, Kageyama notices that with a quick, stretching slide attack, Oikawa isn’t using Kindaichi the same way he did during the Interhigh tournament.

During the game’s final rally, Kindaichi succeeds in blocking Kageyama, but Sugawara is there to save it. After Aoba Johsai’s loss, Kindaichi breaks into tears. While with Kunimi, Kindaichi encounters Kageyama after the game but is unable to speak to him. Kunimi would in his place vow that they would get their revenge the next time they faced one another. At the ramen shop, Kindaichi is still upset about Aoba Johsai’s loss and still cries to Matsukawa and Iwaizumi in front of him. However, when leaving the ramen shop, Yahaba remarks that he thought that the third years would be more upset about Aoba Johsai’s loss than they are. Hearing this, Kindaichi tells his friend that among the team, they’d be fine, but on their own at home, that’s when they would mourn the loss deeply.

That night, Kindaichi isn’t shown being overly remorseful over Aoba Johsai’s loss, but he is seen running despite it being late.

Tokyo Nationals Arc

Kindaichi is one of several first years invited to the First Year Training Camp held at Shiratorizawa Academy. Like everyone else, Kindaichi was surprised to see that Hinata had crashed the camp and becomes further surprised at seeing Tsukishima lose his usually cool demeanor to angrily yell at Hinata for his impulsiveness. When it is uncertain if the coaches will allow Hinata to stay, Kindaichi becomes upset at this as he believes Hinata should stay.

After Hinata is allowed to stay, Kindaichi notices the Karasuno middle blocker practicing by himself after the first practice. When Koganegawa is asking for practice partners, Kindaichi volunteers to join him. When Hinata joins the free practice at Tsukishima's request, Kindaichi joins in trying to block him; admitting that he becomes filled with the need to block Hinata anytime he goes to spike. He later asks Hinata why he seems so desperate to prove himself and learns that Hinata not only wishes to become a better player but also wants to one day defeat Kageyama. Kindaichi then tries to assure Hinata that Kageyama is surely having a difficult time at the All-Japan Youth Camp.

Hinata and Kindaichi s4-e5-1.png

After the training camp is over, Kindaichi approaches Hinata to ask how Kageyama has been since he's noticed a change in the setter. Kunimi tells Kindaichi that he is still too concerned about what happened in middle school and should try to put that behind him. Hinata then surprises Kindaichi by saying that it's not a bad thing to have a rivalry with a friend. Before Kunimi completely ushers him away, Kindaichi says a proper good-bye to Hinata.

During the Spring Tournament, Kindaichi watches Karasuno's games with either his team or with Kunimi. Kunimi points out on several occasions how Kindaichi seems to be supporting Hinata more than anyone else.

Kindaichi and Kunimi watch Karasuno's match against Kamomedai together. Into the third set, Kamomedai gains a three-point lead, and Kindaichi expresses his distress for Karasuno, telling Hinata to himself to do something, and Kunimi tells him to learn to be specific. Sometime later, Hinata uses his minus tempo attack to get through Kamomedai's blockers, which Kindaichi bursts into laughter about but goes quiet when Kunimi reminds him that he'll be the one to have to face him in the following year.

Kindaichi continued watching the match when Hinata was discovered to be sick and was removed from the match.

Final Arc

Kindaichi attends the Adlers and Jackals game with Kunimi. He is a college senior and plays for the Tamaden Elephants, a professional Division 2 team in Japan's V-League. He will be working as an electrician in Saitama after graduating. After the game, Kindaichi and Kunimi agree to Kageyama's request to play a game together when they have free time.

Statistics

High School Statistics
Power
 
3/5
Jumping
 
3/5
Stamina
 
4/5
Game Sense
 
2/5
Technique
 
3/5
Speed
 
3/5

According to himself, he uses his height to spike past blockers that can't reach him (like Hinata). According to Oikawa, Kindaichi is at his best when the ball toss allows him to jump his highest and with the aid of his height and spike the ball down.

During the Spring High Tournament, it's shown that he can do a broad quick.

Jumping Reach: 332 cm

Skills

Post-Timeskip Skills Parameter
Serve
 
6/10
Serve Reception
 
6/10
Dig
 
6/10
Setting
 
5/10
Spike
 
7/10
Block
 
8/10
  • Blocks: Kindaichi's strongest skill is his blocking abilities. Thanks to his tall height and long arms, Kindaichi is a formidable blocker.
  • Serves: While Kindaichi doesn't have a particularly powerful serve, he is shown to be able to use his serves to cause hesitation and confusion by aiming for certain areas of the court or specific players in order to throw his opponent off.
  • Spikes: Kindaichi is shown to use a slightly slower quick attack which allows him to reach his peak spiking height when the block is starting their descent; giving the impression that he is spiking at a much higher point. Oikawa has stated that Kindaichi's specialty is spiking above the block.

Relationships

Aoba Johsai High

  • Akira Kunimi:
    Kindaichi and Kunimi s1-e7-1.png
    Kindaichi is often shown in Kunimi's company both on and off the court. Appearing to have known each other since middle school, the two are shown to be quite close and to have shared the same frustration about Kageyama's behavior when they played on the volleyball team together. Kindaichi appears to know Kunimi well, including how Kunimi prefers not to put too much effort into his plays but still tries to get him to be more invested in the sport.
  • Tōru Oikawa: He respects Oikawa the most out of all the seniors and will closely follow any instructions the setter gives during matches. He admires Oikawa's style of playing and being able to bring out the best of his abilities with the most fitting sets.
  • Hajime Iwaizumi:
    Iwaizumi and Kindaichi s1-e6-1.png
    Kindaichi is shown to highly respect Iwaizumi as his upperclassman and as the team ace. During critical times when Kindaichi is feeling overwhelmed or uncertain of how the situation will turn out, Iwaizumi is able to easily pick up how he is feeling and help him get back on track. Like a few others on the team, Kindaichi can become overwhelmed by Iwaizumi's 'cool' actions or statements.

Karasuno High

  • Tobio Kageyama:

    Kindaichi and Kageyama talk

    Kindaichi and Kageyama previously attended Kitagawa Daiichi Junior High together and played on the volleyball team. At the time, Kindaichi was partnered with Kageyama and found difficulty in matching the setter's impossibly quick and high sets. Because of Kageyama's unwillingness to change his ways at the time and making seemingly unreasonable demands of his spikers, Kindaichi became frustrated by Kageyama's behavior to the point of asking for Kageyama to be benched. After they joined separate high school's, Kindaichi right away began to notice Kageyama's change in behavior and how Karasuno was changing him for the better. Despite this, Kindaichi continued to see Kageyama as the person he wanted to beat most and continued to see him as the King of the Court. However, Kindaichi is shown to feel some guilt about possibly not having been able to do more to help Kageyama and has even questioned Hinata about Kageyama's well being. In the Final Arc, Kindaichi and Kageyama appear to have finally put their troubled past behind them and begin to start their friendship anew.
  • Shōyō Hinata:
    Hinata Kindaichi s1-e6-1.png
    Kindaichi first meets Hinata during the practice match between Karasuno and Aoba Johsai. Though at first they seem to get along when they realize they have common ground concerning Kageyama's difficult personality, they quickly differ on where they stand on his setting; Kindaichi calling Kageyama's sets impossible while Hinata says they are great. Kindaichi initially tried to intimidate Hinata by telling him that he would be useless to Kageyama if he couldn't hit his sets only for Kindaichi to be surprised at how Hinata is able to hit the sets without difficulty; having believed no spiker would be able to hit one of Kageyama's sets. Throughout their encounters, the two seem to form a rivalry as they are often shown trying to one-up one another. Kindaichi and Hinata interact a bit during the first year training camp where Kindaichi reveals that he becomes filled with a need to block Hinata anytime he goes to spike. Hinata also advised Kindaichi that it's alright to have rivalries with others when Kindaichi asked Hinata how Kageyama has been after noticing his playing style has changed. Kindaichi follows Karasuno's games during nationals along with the rest of his team and many times finds himself supporting Hinata.

Quotes

  • "I didn't really get along with you from the start! And that's why next time, we will definitely win!" (To Kageyama, Volume 2 Chapter 15)

Trivia

  • Favorite Food: Grilled corn.
  • Pre-timeskip Concern: Girls in his class said that "Kindaichi-kun kinda seems more "lanky" than "tall", right?"
  • Post-timeskip Concern: He is a lightweight drinker.
  • Nicknamed "Turnip-Head" by Ryūnosuke Tanaka, but it's mainly Shōyō Hinata who calls him that now.
    • He shares that nickname with a character from the Ghibli film "Howl's Moving Castle". Ironically, Ghibli's Turnip Head is a scarecrow. It is unknown whether that is intentional or not.
  • In Haikyuu's first popularity poll, Kindaichi tied with Yamamoto at 29th with 466 votes[9]. In the second, he dropped to 32nd with 975 votes[10].
  • Kindaichi is the third oldest first-year in the series.
  • Nomenclature
    • Yūtarō(勇太郎) - Brave First Son
    • Kindaichi (金田一) - Golden Field One
  • Currently plays on the Tamaden Elephants team with Wataru Onaga.

References

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