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The Real Reason Kaz Wears Gloves In Shadow And Bone

Contains slight spoilers for the "Six of Crows" novels

Having already cornered the market on both young adult fare and romantic dramas, Netflix has been making new strides in the fantasy genre of late. After the success of 2019's "The Witcher," the streaming service released "Shadow and Bone" in April, and it has been a runaway success.

An adaptation of Leigh Bardugo's Grishaverse trilogy in combination with her duology known as "Six of Crows," the expansive fantasy series was well received by viewers when it debuted. But by combining the stories of characters who don't interact on the page — Alina's (Jessie Mei Li) discovery that she is the Sun Summoner and everything that follows predates the story of the Crows in the novels — the show has not had much time to dig into the stories of people not named Alina.

Kaz Brekker (Freddy Carter) is the de facto leader of a small gang known as the Crows, but in the books, they're called the Dregs. He's a highly intelligent schemer who's utilizedhis ability to think ahead and outsmart his enemies and has quickly risen through the ranks. But there's still a lot we don't know about him in the show. For instance, he's always shown to be wearing gloves, but it's never fully explained. What's the secret behind these accessories?

The gloves prevent a traumatic flashback

Kaz wears his trademark gloves because of a horrible incident in his past. As established in the "Six of Crows" duology, Kaz is not from the Barrel or even Ketterdam. He grew up on a farm and moved to the city with his older brother, Jordie, after the sudden death of their father. The two young boys were easy marks and were very quickly swindled out of all their money by Pekka Rollins, the leader of the gang known as the Dime Lions. This forced them into poverty and a life on the streets.

Some time after they lost all their money, a firepox plague hit Ketterdam, and Jordie fell ill and died. Kaz survived but not before he was scooped up alongside Jordie's lifeless body and taken to the Reaper's Barge, which is where they burn the bodies of the deceased. Kaz escaped using his brother's bloated corpse to float back to shore and, as a result, has been unable to stand the touch of human skin ever since. If he touches someone, he immediately recalls the feeling of rotting flesh under his fingers and being in the cold water.

Kaz eventually discovered that wearing gloves allowed him to touch others, though his trauma from that day still lingers. It continues to affect him and his ability to carry on meaningful relationships, though the gloves have added a flair of mystery to the character as well.

"Shadow and Bone" Season 1 is streaming on Netflix.