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Manga

This article is about Keiichi Kuzuryū, otherwise known as the King of Diamonds. If you are looking for the King of Diamonds game, click here for the one played in the current immigration period or here for the one played in the previous immigration period.

Keiichi Kuzuryū
Kuzuryū.jpg
Information
Japanese name 九頭龍 慧一
Romaji Kuzuryū Keiichi
Alias Kuzuryū (クズリュー)

King of Diamonds

Age
Gender Male
Hair Color Black
Eye Color
Status Deceased: Dissolved by acid after losing King of Diamonds
Specialty Diamonds
Family
Occupation Attorney
Affiliation Citizen
Beach (No.3) (formerly)
Voice Actor
Manga Debut Chapter 15
"Between the two of us, who has more right to live?"
—Kuzuryū in the manga Chapter 51

Keiichi Kuzuryū is the King of Diamonds in the Borderlands.

Appearance

Kuzuryū has dark hair which he keeps fairly long. He has sharp features and often wears narrow-fit glasses. He is often depicted wearing suits or formal office attire in his role as a lawyer and during the King of Diamonds game, but wore floral Hawaiian shirts when in the Beach. His eyebrows are almost perpetually slanted, giving off a sharp, aggressive expression.

Personality

Kuzuryū appears to be a man of few words, and rarely says any more than what is necessary for the situation. He is never depicted smiling throughout the entire series, and often behaves in a cold and aloof manner towards others. Despite his demeanour, Kuzuryū believes very strongly in justice, equality, and the value of human life. He is also highly intelligent, as indicated by his roles as an international attorney in the real world and the King of Diamonds in the borderlands. A lot about his personality is also shown through his posture and gestures. When talking, he never shows any emotion, is not expressive with body language, and stays tense.

Story 

Before Borderlands

Much of Kuzuryū's backstory is revealed in the form of flashbacks during the King of Hearts game in Chapter 51. Prior to the borderlands, Kuzuryū was an elite international attorney. At some point, he began to work for an unnamed American company, where he was assisting in a case where indigenous peoples of a developing country were seeking compensation for damage caused to their physical and mental well-being as a result of a factory the company had built there. During the case, his colleagues were indifferent to the suffering of the plaintiffs, suggesting that they did not have the money to pursue a prolonged case against them. It is further implied that the company used underhand means to silence them as well. This experience, coupled with other interactions with the wealthy elite, led Kuzuryū to perceive a grave sense of injustice in the world and ponder how his role as a lawyer made him complicit in the suffering of the poor and disadvantaged in society. Overall the years, his mental health gradually declines due to what he kept hearing and seeing. Eventually, he decides to go back to Japan. After arriving back, Kuzuryū is transported to the Borderlands when he witnesses fireworks one night while staring out from his car window. It is likely he arrived due to a car accident.

Player- First Stage

He steps out of his car to take in the now overgrown Tokyo, and sees the Tokyo Tower in the distance. Due to his intelligence, he has no issues surviving. On his 3rd day of sojourn, he and Mira Kanō sees Ginji Kyūma and Isao Shīrabi doing radio exercises. Kyūma urges him to join them, but he politely declined. Kyūma wondered if they’ll ever return to the old world, but Kuzuryū replies that he doesn’t really have any reason to do so. On his 8th day of sojourn, he and Mira played a game of chess while he discusses his old company. He apologizes for boring her, but she says that hearing these things— the sport between the rich and the poor— never tires her. He admits that sometimes, her simplistic, endless curiosity scares him. The four don’t participate in games together, but gather in the park every morning to chat. Over the months, they grow to become quite good friends.

Player- Second Stage

On the first day, he cleared the King of Diamonds (not the same King of Diamonds as shown in the series). On the second day of Exhibitions, he and the other 3 share their experiences from day 1. Kyūma shares the circulating rumor that the citizens are players who’ve cleared all the card games. On the 8th day of Exhibitions, an announcement is made saying only 1 card game remains. He is shocked at the news. Mira then theorizes that the prize for completing all card games is the citizen role— creating games for the rest of eternity with no regard for a visa. The group shares what they think, and when it’s Kuzuryū’s turn, he solemnly states that he’s lost what he’s been looking for; in the end, it doesn’t matter where he is. After the conversation wraps up, the team heads towards the final game venue- the King of Hearts.

Citizen- Prior to The Beach

At some point after he became a citizen of the Borderlands, Kuzuryū was approached in the open by Yūji Mahiru and they have a brief chat. Then the early Beach residents emerge and invites to join them at The Beach, led by Takeru Danma. He informs Mira Kanō, and they both decide to infiltrate The Beach, posing as players, curious to see how this ordeal plays out.

Citizen- Four of Clubs

During his stay at the Beach, Kuzuryū is also featured as the observer in the Four of Clubs side story. The game directs players to run away towards a “goal”, but the goal is a bus at the very start. Only players who don’t abandon an injured dealer survives. He shares the idea with Kyūma, and he approves of it, but asked why he would risk his life as a King. He responds that he simply wanted to know if someone willing to help him existed. He poses as the player who severely injured his leg at the start of the game. Although most of the other players continue on without him, an unnamed female player, a gentle girl, refuses to abandon him, believing the key to winning a clubs game is to work as a team. They seek refuge in a bus close to the game's entrance. During this time, he asks her why she would help him, and she shares her story, which greatly touches him. They the finish the game. As the girl runs off to look for medical supplies, he reports back and requests for cleanup at the venue.

Citizen- Beach

Kuzuryū 'sfirst official appearance in the manga is at the end of Chapter 15. He and Rizuna An are unnamed, but are depicted flanking Danma as he welcomes Ryōhei Arisu and Yuzuha Usagi to The Beach. In the following chapter, he is introduced as a former international attorney who is ranked No. 3 in The Beach. He accompanies the group as Danma brings Arisu and Usagi around The Beach compounds.

Kuzuryū is also present by Danma's side when the latter confronts Morizono Aguni by the pool during the dispute between his group and Arisu. Kuzuryū is revealed to specialise in Diamonds at this point.

Kuzuryū is next seen at the meeting of The Beach executives. Danma announces that he, Kuzuryū and An will personally participate in games for that night. Following the night's games, Kuzuryū does not return to The Beach, prompting speculation that he died in his game, or worse, murdered alongside Danma.

When the Second stage of the borderlands begins, Kuzuryū is revealed to be the King of Diamonds, and addresses the players in a broadcast together with the three other representatives of the borderland citizens, including Mira, who is also revealed to be the Queen of Hearts. During his segment, Kuzuryū congratulates the players on how quickly they have cleared the card games, but stops short of explaining the meaning and purpose behind them.

Citizen- King of Diamonds

Kuzuryū's King of Diamonds game is attempted by Asuma Takashi, Yashige Benzo, Daimon Hinako, and Shuntarō Chishiya on the 6th day of the second stage of the borderlands. Upon entering the game premises, Chishiya recognises Kuzuryū as the former Beach Number 3. Despite Chishiya's and the other players' attempts to strike up a conversation, Kuzuryū largely ignores them and proceeds to explain the instructions of the game.

Kuzuryū maintains a steady lead throughout the game, and is largely silent until Takashi and Benzo are eliminated. Chishiya proceeds to question Kuzuryū for his motivations on staying on as a borderland citizen, to which he implies that he had become disillusioned with the real world as he witnessed the grave injustice of it in his work as a lawyer, where only the rich and powerful were able to live fair and fulfilling lives. When Hinako is eliminated next, Kuzuryū reveals his backstory in detail to Chishiya, who mocks him for suggesting that human lives have inherent worth, or that his judgment would be any more valid than those of other people. In the remaining few rounds, Chishiya chooses "100" and deliberately shows his choice to Kuzuryū, recognising that doing so would force him to decide directly if Chishiya himself should live or die, as choosing any number other than "0" would be equivalent to killing Chishiya. As Kuzuryū ponders his decision for each round, he reflects on his experiences before and during the borderlands, picking "0" to prolong the game. In the final round of the game, Kuzuryū recalls his personal ideal that all human lives are equal. He decides that picking any number other "0" would be akin to judging his life as more valuable than Chishiya, and opts to pick "0" again so that Chishiya may live. In his last words, Kuzuryū remarks that he was finally able to live his life according to his ideals because of Chishiya's actions. Like other players in the King of Diamonds game who lost, he is killed when acid is tipped onto him from the scales hanging above.

In a flashback after his death, Kuzuryū is shown talking to Mira when the Ten of Hearts game is cleared. He tells Mira that he chose to stay on as a borderland citizen to ensure that the games were fair and impartial, and expresses hope that a Joker who could unite borderland players and citizens under a fairer law and order may one day emerge.

Relationships

Mira Kanō

Kuzuryū and Mira were especially close within the friend group. He found her curiosity fascinating, and she respected his high intelligence. It was them 2 that decided to infiltrate the Beach out of boredom.

Shīrabi Isao

Kuzuryū didn’t talk to Isao as much as Mira and Kyūma, but they still seemed to be good friends.

Ginji Kyūma

Kyūma was the person who originally dragged him into the friend group, urging him to participate in his and Isao’s radio exercises. As citizens, they created the Four of Clubs.

Momoka Inoue

During his stay at the Beach, Kuzuryū desperately wanted to know why Momoka would so willingly volunteer to give up her life for the Witch Hunt. In summary, she stated that should she die in the Borderlands, she’d rather it be because of a decisions made from her own ideals. In the later King of Diamonds against Chishiya, he recalls this memory, which aids him make his final choice.

Shuntarō Chishiya

Kuzuryū barely got to know Chishiya, but is immensely grateful for him finally allowing himself to live his life how he wanted to. He trusted and respected him enough to finally reveal his past, despite Chishiya’s taunts and snarky comments.

Quotes

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