Studio Trigger is one of the most bombastic, action-centric, absolutely over the top animation studios out there. They're the masterminds behind Gurren Lagann, Little Witch Academia, and they even have a movie named Promare coming out in just a few weeks. But a little show called Kill La Kill is the one that really got people talking.
Sure, most of Trigger's works tend to prioritize great action and leave a bit to be desired when it comes to the plot, but Kill la Kill is one of their best examples of a show with amazing action and equally amazing writing. Especially when it comes to the power system and rules of the world they live in. So, let's take a look at some of the defining laws that the main character Ryuko has to follow.
10 Strong Mind Equals More Power
Ryuko Matoi is not the calm and collected sort. She's brash, confrontational, loud, and an overall tornado of a "human". But, after starting her conquest of Honnoji Academy, that ends up working in her favor. Because, as it turns out, she can't fight if she's not motivated.
We've seen it during the more somber parts of the show but Ryuko's mental and emotional states are absolutely tantamount to her strength in a fight. She needs them to sync with Senkestu so she can pull out their combined power. Otherwise, he's nothing more than an incredibly revealing outfit.
9 Senketsu And Ryuko Must Be In Sync
And speaking of their syncing, that's just as important as Ryuko's mental state. Ryuko uses Senkestu, a Kamui/uniform made entirely of Life Fibers in order to fight back. But, fighting with him equipped requires the two of them to have a shared purpose in mind.
It's similar to the drifting system in Pacific Rim or fusion in Dragon Ball Z. Two pilots, one body. If the shared body is being pulled in two different directions, it's not going to perform nearly as well as it should. But, if the two pilots essentially become one, then it'll be stronger than ever before.
8 No Life Fibers Without Full Uniform Destruction
This is a bit of an odd one, but it seems like Senkestu can only absorb the Life Fibers of the Goku Uniforms after they've been cut to shreds. It's why Ryuko ends up targeting club captain's and eventually the Four Pillars.
But, if Senketsu was made as a way to fight back, shouldn't he just be able to pull the fibers out? Was a vacuum function not included? Or maybe even engulfing a person whole then spitting them out in their birthday suit? Maybe Ryuko's dad, Senkestu's inventor was a bit of a battle-freak.
7 With Senketsu It's A Literal Blood Balance
Now if all it took was Senketsu and Ryuko to be in sync, we'd be at a loss. The pair could essentially pull out infinite power just for agreeing with each other. No, there needs to be some sort of limited resource to Senketsu, and what makes more sense than the blood of his wearer?
Each and every time Ryuko transforms, she pulls the chain on her wrist band to cut herself and give Senkestu blood. But, it's a delicate balance, because if he gets too much too fast, he'll go out of control and take Ryuko with him.
6 Watch The Transformation Sequence Every, Single, Time
Now, this may not be a rule of Kill La Kill in-universe, but it sure is when it comes to the anime medium. Transformation sequences. Everyone knows about them. Sailor Moon, Power Rangers, even Voltron, they all have them. And a weirdly required aspect of these transformations is that they play out just about each and every time, no matter how many times the viewers have seen them.
Kill La Kill is no different. Ryuko, Satsuki, the Four Pillars or really anybody really. If they transform, we'll see it. So if the free-spirited Ryuko was chained down by anything, it'd be that.
5 It's In Her Digital Blood To Fight The Man
Again, Kill La Kill is made by Trigger, who's best known for their masterpiece work Tegen Toppa Gurren Lagann. TTGL is a show about rising up and fighting the man/power, and so is Kill La Kill. In fact, just about every Trigger show has a protagonist that's different from the norm, fighting against the established rules of their worlds.
So, of course, Ryuko spends most of her free time-fighting Satsuki, Honnoji Academi, Ragyo and even the Life Fibers themselves. She'll fight anyone at all because fighting the established norms is part of her animated blood.
4 Full Exposure Is The Only Way
Another law of the KLK universe is the fact that exposure equals power. And with that comes fanservice, miles and miles of fanservice. It's one of the main reasons we have a hard time recommending the show to anyone unfamiliar with the anime medium. But, it's a simple truth.
Life Fibers are a sentient alien race that controls and dominates through clothing. So, how are we supposed to fight them unless we're stripped down to just our birthday suits? And, once Ryuko overcomes her shame and anxiety from being so...open during fights, she becomes way stronger. Kind of an odd message, but still.
3 Fighting Life Fibers Is Impossible Without The Trusty Scissor Blade
Without Senkestu, it's doubtful Ryuko would have made it this far, but she might've still taken out a club captain or two. However, without her Scissor Blade, Ryuko wouldn't have made it through Honnoji's front gate.
This blade was specifically crafted to cut and sever Life Fibers. It's half of a whole and that whole equals a lot of destruction for Ryuko to wield. No matter how outlandish her transformations, situations, or enemies get, Ryuko always has her blade.
Other shows might've introduced a new, upgraded weapon or figured out a way for her to fight bare-handed but it's obvious Trigger loved the Scissor Blade. With good reason, it's so incredibly iconic!
2 She Absolutely Can't And Won't Betray Mako
Now we all know that Ryuko is quick to anger and even quicker to start a fight, but there's one person that Ryuko has a real soft spot for, Mako Mankanshoku.
Mako is the all-rounder tertiary "protag" behind Ryuko and Satsuki and an absolute treasure. She's hilarious, upbeat, energetic, and usually remains a non-combatant. She's Ryuko's first, closest, and absolute best friend, maybe even more. The two are inseparable and balance each other perfectly, so we're confident saying that one of the rules of this universe is "Do Mako No Harm". And, it's a rule Ryuko seems to follow religiously.
1 She Just Can't Stop Being Hardcore
And finally, at the end of the day, Ryuko's hardcore. This isn't a rule, or a suggestion, or even an opinion, this is a concrete fact that Ryuko Matoi is an absolute rad lady. Even when she's being childish, vulnerable, and sweet with Mako she still does it in a rock and roll way.
Just as an example, google search "Ryuko Matoi GIF" and just see for yourselves just how few GIFS there are of Matoi doing something uncharacteristically soft. Ryuko is the protag for a reason! Shes the hot-blooded, red-themed, all-out brawler that we know and love and it's obvious that KLK fans wouldn't have it any other way.