profile & personality - kiraraAll the following information is based on the manga version of InuYasha unless stated otherwise. There are many UNMARKED SPOILERS so please be careful while reading!
NAME: Kirara (Pronounced Kilala)
NAME MEANING: Mica
ABILITIES: Flight, transformation
Kirara is normally seen in her plush sized form as a small demon cat. She looks very cuddly, and actually is with people she trusts and loves. However, get her angry, mad, or scared, and she will transform herself into a wild demon cat, ready to attack! She acts similar to a regular cat - she eats cat food, she is given treats, she hunts for fish, and she plays with small toys. She is often seen batting her paws at small bugs or demons that walk by. Kirara can be described as loyal. She is always there to protect not only Sango, but her companions as well. She honors the requests of her teammates, allows them to ride on her back, and helps out at all cause. She is even patient enough to allow Kagome to dress her up in cute outfits through out the series as well. Kirara is a loyal, cuddly, and lovable demon cat who can also hunt down any offenders in order to protect the group.
what is a nekomata?In Japanese and Chinese mythology, creatures called Nekomata lived in the mountainous regions, eating and killing humans. These records date back to the Sui Dynasty and in the beginning of the early Kamakura period (1233). These records wrote: "They have cat-like eyes, but bodies like dogs." People question whether or not these were really demons, or in fact large animals with rabies due to the records of people saying they caught the "nekomata disease," which had similar symptoms of modern day rabies. Some records even said that these Nekomata figures were shape-shifters, and appeared as humans to lure in prey.
Another version of this myth is where domestic cats turn into Nekomata. There is a story called Kankyo Hoin where a small cat was raised in the mountainous areas, had a sword in its mouth that the people of the village needed. So, they chased him. However, the cat shape-shifted into a Nekomata and killed the people of the village. These old stories created a folklore in Japan that cats should not be raised till old age because all domesticated cats will turn into Nekomata. The Edo period reported that these cats will have "two tails grow at a young age" and that will be a warning sign of a Nekomata.
Cats are often associated with death in Japan, and the Nekomata is often blamed for that. They are known for having powers of necromancy and bringing back the dead. They create ritual dances that are initiated by the paws and tails. It is said the worse the cat was treated, the more evil/stronger powers it will have as a Nekomata. Kirara is depicted as a cuddly cat at first, but then quickly can shape-shift into a demonic saber-toothed demon, ready to rip the flesh off a human.
transformation & abilitiesKirara will either transform into her fierce demonic form on command of Sango, or on her own when she feels threatened. Kirara becomes engulfed in flames when she transforms into the demonic stage, and once again when she transforms back down. This is probably due to the fact the Kirara is a fire type demon. Kirara's transformation form is noted to look a lot like a saber-toothed cat. She has flames by her feet that eventually go away. Her teeth become huge, and sharpen. Her eyes are enlarged, her fur becomes huge, and overall her built just becomes very scary. (Relating this to the Nekomata above, this is like a shape-shift from a normal domestic cat to a demonic form!)
While in this new form, Kirara gains the ability to fly. She has been seen carrying only up to three adult sized people on her back. However, it is clear that she becomes worn from carrying so many people. She has amazing speed that allows her to attack from high above, and also swiftly get away if needed. Her rough fur helps people like Sango hold on when riding on top of her, because there is obviously no seat or harness helping them stay on.
In the InuYasha: a Feudal Fairy tale video game, Sango has a combined attack with Kirara called Kirara, which is her Super Attack ( <-, <- + ) Kirara is seen charging the enemy across the screen with a powerful hit. In the Mini-game found in this game, Rocksmash, your best bet is to let the Kirara attack take out the rocks. She is a big help to have your time be under 20 seconds when using Sango in the mini-game. (If you want to play a cute little game created on Deviantart I found, click here! You get to pet her, clean her, feed her, and gain experience.)
Kirara makes a few appearances in the InuYasha card games as well.
1. "A Girl and her cat"
CARD NUMBER: 18
CARD TYPE: event
Attach only to SANGO. While you control KIRARA, no one can attack SANGO.
2. "Kirara (Legends)"
CARD NUMBER: LS5
CARD TYPE: Character
When KIRARA steals a jewel shard ready a SANGO that you control. All other Animals you control gain +1 to all colors.
3. "Kirara, Sango's Companion"
CARD NUMBER: 54
CARD TYPE: Character
When played, search your deck for a copy of SANGO and put her in your hand.
4. "Kirara, Transformed"
CARD NUMBER: 55
CARD TYPE: Character
When KIRARA steals a shard name a color. KIRARA gains +2 to that color.
trivia / fun facts➮ Water does not seem to have any effect on the flames that are on Kirara's tail or legs. Any scene where she is in water, the fire stays potent, and is not even close to going out.
➮ The anime version of InuYasha shows that Kirara has been in Sango's family for three generations. Before that, she was with a maiden named Midoriko. This shows us that Kirara is a very old demon.
➮ Kirara's eyesight is so remarkable that she is able to see Sango when Sango is invisible in the anime. Kirara jumps right onto her with no problem!
➮ When Sango goes into one of her crazy moods thanks to Miroku, Kirara and Shippou are often seen holding onto each other.
➮ Kagome brings modern day era cat food back for Kirara to nibble on and enjoy.
➮ InuYasha burns some of Kirara's fur off while practicing his attack, Wind Scar.
➮ Kirara translates to Mica, which means "the loved friend," which I feel like it is safe to say everyone in the party adores Kirara!