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Hunter X Hunter Fans All Agree That Kurapika's Backstory Is What Makes Him So Relatable

Kurapika won fans over early on in the "Hunter x Hunter" run. His wit and careful attention to the challenges at hand provided glimpses into a guarded personality. He became one of Gon's earliest comrades and a valuable asset to the unofficial team pushing through the ever-expansive set of Hunter exams. Kurapika's place in the series has earned him many distinctions — including being listed among the strongest Blacklist hunters in the "Hunter x Hunter" universe (via GameRant).

Past trauma has been a running theme for the character. Much of his narrative revolves around The Kurta Clan's murder at the hands of The Phantom Troupe. The victims' scarlet eyes, highly prized among collectors, were extracted for black market sales. For Kurapika, the guilt of not being with his family during the horrific event and a sense of respect for their desecrated remains drive him forward.

The character's sometimes dark and disturbing journey towards recovering what was lost — both physically and mentally — has earned him a loyal following. A multi-layered backstory, along with his further adventures as part of the Hunter community, connects with the "Hunter x Hunter" fanbase for a number of reasons.

He has a very different arc than Gon

"Hunter x Hunter" gave Kurapika a rich backstory, which some would argue overshadows other leading characters' stories. CBR's Sean Cubillas actually argued that Kurapika is a better choice for main character status, especially when paired with how powerful Kurapika is. The writer's argument touches on what some see as a more defined and deeper backstory that goes far beyond Gon's arc — and they're not alone in this theory, as many fans agree.

The backstory of traumatic family issues is relatable to a surprising amount of viewers. While Gon is searching for his father, Ging, the journey is shown with a tone that is more akin to a fascinating journey than a foreboding quest. Adding to the fact, Ging is very much alive — a detail in stark contrast to what Kurapika is experiencing. Gon and Ging's reunion during the 13th Hunter Chairman Election arc, and their eventual experience at the World Tree, offers a reunion that Kurapika will never have the chance to experience.

He connects to complex emotions many have

Reddit users pondering Kurapika's impact on the fan community and his overall popularity have thoughts on why he holds such appeal. For u/Q269, the relatability comes from "emotional trauma dealing with a family past that no one acknowledges," which could show what they consider to be the "most drive outside of Gon himself" when looking at character motivations. While Kurapika usually remains guarded about his thoughts of anger and revenge, it's not something completely hidden from those around him. Fighting the urge to give in to his rage as he attempts to punish the Phantom Troupe doesn't always go as planned.

Those complex feelings are something many can relate to, as well as the attempt to hide such emotions from friends, family, and colleagues. One anonymous Reddit user summed up what they (and many others) value in his underlying quest; "I liked how he showed the darker sides to revenge, too ... he's willing to kill himself for revenge because he has no goals or plans beyond that," they wrote. His push to get revenge can put his friends in danger, even if he doesn't intend to endanger them.

A connection to another wounded hunter connects with fans

One of the calming influences in his life is the character Melody, whose own life led to a surprising disfiguration that led her on a personal search to destroy the Sonata of Darkness. The piece itself creates horrible consequences for those who hear it. Much like the members of the villainous Phantom Troupe, its danger grows when all solo parts are combined — Melody discovered its dangers by just hearing the flute solo.

In a symbol of trust between the two hunters, Melody discloses a very personal detail to Kurapika. Showing just a patch of her arm to Kurapika, she reveals something to him only, the information not even shared with the audience; while we don't see the details, the horror of the disfigurement is visibly troubling to Kurapika (via CBR). In many ways, that simple sequence highlights visible scars that are as painful as the inner turmoil her friend carries.

Mutual respect — and eventual friendship — is on display throughout their interactions. Her ability to reach him through quiet, patient resolve is something Kurapika himself has used on occasion with Leorio and his closest Hunter friends. Reddit user u/attackonbleach speaks to what they and other fans have noticed about the two. "One of my favorite moments is when Melody has to remind him that his anger and irrationality is putting his friends at risk," they wrote. "And it's such a jarring moment for him because he realizes how narrow-minded he's been in pursuit of his goal, which is contradictory to the cool-headed methodical Kurapika that we are introduced to."