Kawamatsu the Kappa (jap. 河童の河松, Kappa no Kawamatsu) is a samurai and sumo wrestler with the rank of yokozuna (note: needs link) from Wano Country. He is part of the Nine Akazaya and briefly adopted the alias Gyukimaru (jap. 牛鬼丸, Gyūkimaru) 13 years ago. However, he was then captured by the Beasts Pirates and imprisoned in the Udon prison camp. After Raizo freed him from his cell there, he joined Kinemon and his forces with the goal of overthrowing Kurozumi Orochi and Kaidou.
Kawamatsu has the appearance of a kappa. His roundish face is always partially covered by a large kasa, which is decorated with a black square at the top. In addition to his unmistakable headgear, his beak-like mouth also catches the eye. His hands with webbed fingers and his long light mane are also among his distinctive features. He dresses according to his home country in a dark kimono with a rope pattern and in sandals. He also wears a light-colored cape.
Kawamatsu previously appeared as an extremely kind and caring character. After the death of Kozuki Oden and his wife, he rescued their daughter Hiyori from the burning palace and took care of her from then on. He procured food for her and brought a smile back to her face after her tragic loss of her parents and brother. Kawamatsu has always been loyal to Oden, so he has no hesitation in fighting alongside Kinemon and Luffy’s alliance against Kaidou and Orochi.
Skills & Strength
Kawamatsu is part of the Nine Akazaya, and as such is considered by Kinemon to be a valuable asset in the fight against Kaidou and Orochi, who alone outweighs 100 men. In Wano Country, Kawamatsu is the strongest sumo wrestler, earning the highest title among them. His body is extremely durable, as he can easily eat poisoned fish. His abilities are also supported by the fact that simple fish bones can become a very dangerous weapon in his hands. Therefore, the guards of Udon always make sure to remove all bones from the poisoned fish, so that Kawamatsu can not use them as projectiles.
As a samurai, Kawamatsu masters his own special sword art, which he calls “Kappa style” (jap. 河童流, Kappa-ryū). In this style, he combines sumo attacks with his sword Soto Muso. His fighting style also incorporates the skills of armor haki, which is called Ryuo in Wano Country. He is also proficient in observation haki.
The Daimyo and his vassals
Once Kawamatsu and his mother were shipwrecked on Wano Country and asked the local people for help, but they threw stones at them. His mother died and told her son that fish people were discriminated against and that he should live as a kappa from then on, which he did. 33 years ago he found the two stranded Minks Nekomamushi and Inuarashi, but they were discovered by the inhabitants and mistaken for demons. The three were tied to a pole and were to be burned alive, however Kozuki Oden witnessed this and saved them. Although Oden simply disappeared again afterwards, they followed him and unceremoniously became part of his entourage.
With money running low due to Oden’s carefree ways, his followers attempted to steal money from the daimyo of Hakumai, Shimotsuki Yasuie. Yasuie caught the nine-man troupe but handed them the money anyway instead of punishing them and put something on top. As a condition, he asked that they use the money to become better themselves, to serve Oden as worthy retainers. They then formed a respectable retinue 30 years ago, but that same year the Whitebeard pirate band appeared and Oden, the two Minks, and Izou left Wano Country with them. During Oden’s absence, they defended Kuri, but when Oden briefly returned, he left only his family and the Minks on Wano Country and sailed away again.
In the meantime, Orochi was appointed Shogun and oppressed the populace. Six months before Oden was finally to return, enough was enough for Oden’s followers who had stayed behind and they went on the attack against Orochi. Fortunately, Kawamatsu and Inuarashi stayed behind, as at the same time the Beasts Pirates made an attack on Oden’s family. Though the two were able to put the attackers to flight, once Oden was back and learned of it, he stormed over to Orochi. Unbeknownst to his most loyal subordinates, Oden’s motivation was to publicly make himself a jerk for the next five years, dancing naked through the streets. It wasn’t until five years later, 20 years ago, that Oden had had enough and, much to the delight of his subordinates, took up arms and went to war against Wano Country’s oppressors.
His followers became known to the populace as “The Nine Red Scabbards”, but they ultimately failed to win the battle and were sentenced to death in the cooking pot. When they were finally to be executed, Oden was able to broker a deal: Whoever survived for an hour would be spared. And so, as leader, he entered the cooking pot first and ordered his subordinates to climb onto a board which he held above his head. Though the heat alone was enough to give Kawamatsu and company a run for their money, Oden, and by extension his nine followers, survived the hour. However, Orochi didn’t stick to the deal and ordered the execution by firing squad. With his last strength, Oden pushed his subordinates away and relayed his order to them to open the borders of Wano Country. They ran to the castle, but it was already in flames.
Kawamatsu’s life after Oden’s death
Kawamatsu grabbed Oden’s daughter, Kozuki Hiyori, dug an escape tunnel and escaped with her, while the rest of the people present were sent to the future by Kozuki Toki. Kawamatsu and Hiyori stayed in hiding. For the next seven years, Kawamatsu cared for Hiyori until she became worried about her protector because he cared more about her than himself. Therefore, she wrote Kawamatsu a letter and disappeared. Deeply concerned for Hiyori, the kappa set out to find her. Since he couldn’t find her, he went to Ringo’s gravesite.
There he met the injured komagitsune Onimaru. They became friends, and Kawamatsu set out to protect the tombs and their associated weapons from grave robbers under the alias Gyukimaru. Soon, he began lifting the weapons from the tombs himself, wanting to be prepared for the return of Kinemon and Momonosuke. After Onimaru realized that Kawamatsu wanted to keep them safe from the grave robbers, he helped him do so. One day, however, Kawamatsu was careless and was caught stealing food in the Flower Capital and imprisoned in the Udon Prison Mine. Onimaru was then left alone to protect the tombs in Ringo, and after Kawamatsu’s disappearance, he took over his alias Gyukimaru.
The prison mine in Udon
Kawamatsu watched as Luffy was taken to the prison mine in Udon after his defeat by Kaidou. When he was about to eat a fish that had forgotten to remove the bones, he took the opportunity to attack one of the guards with a fishbone. Later, when Queen entered the prison mine and stepped in front of Luffy and Hyogoro, Kawamatsu approached Raizo, who was hiding from the guards just outside his cell. He inquired of the ninja about Momonosuke. Kawamatsu asked Raizo to free him from the cell so he could join the upcoming battle on Onigashima. Since Raizo was discovered by the guards at that moment, he had to quickly escape. Afterwards, Kawamatsu observed the commotion Luffy was causing in the mine. Secretly, he asked him to be careful not to let Hyogoro die.
The next day, Kawamatsu watched Yasuie’s execution via video transmission with tears in his eyes.
Some time after that, Big Mom, suffering from amnesia, suddenly appeared in the mine. During her fight with Queen, not only was much of the prison reduced to rubble, but Kawamatsu’s cell was also destroyed. He then called on Luffy to tell the other prisoners that there was hope in the fight against Kaidou.
Babanuki then ordered his subordinates to finish Kawamatsu off, as he was one of the Nine Akazaya. Confident of victory, the guards approached the ruined cell as Kawamatsu was still handcuffed. However, Raizo tossed Kawamatsu both the keys to the handcuffs and his sword, Soto Muso. After freeing himself from his handcuffs, Kawamatsu finished off the guards with his kappa style and joined the team around Luffy, Hyogoro, Raizo, O-Kiku, and Chopper to take over the prison. Daifugo and Babanuki now infected the other prisoners with the Mummy Virus to crush the rebellion. Luffy’s alliance was surrounded by the infected prisoners, but Luffy was able to take control of the situation, which impressed Kawamatsu.
Reunion with Hiyori
Udon was now completely in the hands of Luffy’s alliance, and Kawamatsu separated himself from the rest for the time being to meet someone. For the final battle, Kawamatsu planned to rejoin the rebellion. Kawamatsu made his way to Ringo at Oihagi Bridge, where he interrupted the fight between Zoro and Gyukimaru. Joyfully, he also met Hiyori again, who had recognized him. However, the reunion was abruptly disrupted when some beast pirates showed up to exact revenge on Gyukimaru for stealing heaps of weapons from the pirates.
When Kawamatsu and Zoro defeated the attackers, Gyukimaru fled, but was glad that Kawamatsu was still alive. While Zoro chased Gyukimaru, Kawamatsu told Hiyori about Shimotsuki Ushimaru and his companion Onimaru. The two soon caught up with Zoro, who had followed Gyukimaru to a secret entrance. Kawamatsu discovered a weapons cache there and reported to Kinemon. Outside, Hiyori offered Zoro one of her father’s swords in return for the shuusui, to which Kawamatsu objected. He also refused to believe Zoro’s story about his fight with Ryuma, making him even more skeptical of him. Later, he met with more allies for strategic consultation in Kuri, Hiyori on the other hand decided not to meet with the others yet. When he told the others about Lady Hiyori still being alive, they cried with joy.
The Attack on Onigashima
The day before the big fight, they finally made their way to the harbor, but they didn’t find anyone there. Nevertheless, they set sail, leaving Momonosuke and Shinobu behind. Out at sea, they confronted the thought that the traitor must be among them, and Kanjuro revealed himself to be the traitor. He was able to capture Momonosuke and suddenly ships of the Beasts Pirates appeared in front of them. The situation seemed hopeless when unexpectedly, one ally after another did appear and it turned out that Kinemon merely misinterpreted Yasuie’s message. As a result, Kawamatsu swam back to shore, but he was unable to stop Kanjuro, causing the latter to escape with Momonosuke. Off Onigashima, they then discussed the plan, with Kawamatsu joining the infiltration squad to approach the island from the rear in Law’s submarine. On their way to the back of Onigashima, they were then hailed by Nekomamushi, who promised to be there soon.
Once there, Law teleported the group to the mainland, where they met up with Marco, Nekomamushi, and Izou. However, the traitor Kanjuro confronted them with some beast pirates, whereupon they had to finish him off with a heavy heart and then encountered Kinemon and Denjiro again. They entered the building and attacked Kaidou with combined force and managed to wound him. Kaidou then went into his dragon form and while the red sword sheaths clung to him, he flew to the top. After the Minks were then able to take their revenge on Jack, Kaidou interfered in the fight again. Determined to take him down with them, they faced him. Initially, they were able to damage him and seemed to gain the upper hand, but back in his human form, Kaidou defeated the samurai all together. Big Mom also got to the roof, but Luffy, Zoro, Law, Kid, and Killer took over the fight and Law teleported the samurai off the battlefield. While they were unconscious, they were helped by a mysterious person.
They quickly recovered, but the person was no longer to be seen, instead Oden stood before them. However, he turned out to be merely Kanjuro’s drawing, which Ashura took care of, sacrificing himself in the process. Looking for Kanjuro himself, Jack confronted them, which Inuarashi in turn took over. Orochi, in his Yamato no Orochi form, was then decapitated by the rest, before Raizo then faced Fukurokuju alone. After a brief conversation, the rest of the group split up and Kawamatsu and Izou met up with Sanji, who was carrying the bandaged Zoro. Together they made their way to the concert hall. Once there, they heard the news of Luffy’s supposed death, but saw through it that it only served to weaken morale.
- The Kappa (folklore) is a mythical creature from Japanese folklore.
- It has a distinctive pool: Kappappa.
- His favorite dish is eggs, a main ingredient in the stew Oden.
- In an early formative stage, Kawamatsu’s names were to include Yokozuna Kawasaburo (横綱河三郎) and Kappanojo (河童ノじょう).
- Kawamatsu was ranked 96th in the 7th popularity poll.