Why Does Deku Call Bakugo Kacchan?


For fans of the popular anime series My Hero Academia, one of the most intriguing aspects of the show is the relationship between Izuku “Deku” Midoriya and Katsuki “Kacchan” Bakugo. While the two characters start out as bitter rivals, Deku seems to have a particular nickname for Bakugo that stands out: “Kacchan.” In this article, we will explore the origins of this nickname and what it tells us about the relationship between these two characters.

The Origins of the Nickname

The nickname “Kacchan” is actually a shortened version of Bakugo’s given name, Katsuki. In Japanese, the suffix “-chan” is often used as a term of endearment, particularly for young children or close friends. It’s similar to using “buddy” or “pal” in English. Deku may have started calling Bakugo “Kacchan” as a way to show that, despite their rivalry, he still cared about him as a person.

Early Interactions Between Deku and Kacchan

The relationship between Deku and Kacchan is established early on in My Hero Academia. As children, they grew up in the same neighborhood and went to the same elementary school. However, Kacchan was always the popular kid who bullied Deku for being “quirkless” – meaning he didn’t have any superpowers. Despite this, Deku still looked up to Kacchan and admired his strength and confidence.

The Origin of the Name “Deku”

As Deku himself explains in the anime, the nickname “Deku” comes from the Japanese word for “useless.” Kacchan gave him this nickname as a way to belittle him and make him feel inferior. However, Deku eventually embraces the name and turns it into a symbol of his resilience and determination.

The Evolution of Their Relationship

As the series progresses, we see that Deku and Kacchan’s relationship becomes more complex. While they continue to be rivals, they also start to develop a grudging respect for each other. Kacchan begins to see that Deku is not as weak as he once thought, and Deku starts to understand Kacchan’s motivations and insecurities.

The Sports Festival Arc

One of the key moments in their relationship is during the Sports Festival arc. When Kacchan is kidnapped by the villainous League of Villains, Deku risks everything to save him. This moment cements their bond as something more than just rivals.

The Provisional Hero License Exam Arc

Another important moment in their relationship is during the Provisional Hero License Exam arc. When Deku is injured and unable to fight, Kacchan steps in to protect him. This shows that Kacchan is willing to put aside his pride and work with Deku for the greater good.

What the Nickname “Kacchan” Tells Us About Their Relationship

The nickname “Kacchan” is a symbol of the complicated relationship between Deku and Kacchan. On the one hand, it shows that Deku still cares about Kacchan, despite their rivalry and past conflicts. On the other hand, it also highlights the power dynamic between them – Kacchan is the one who gave Deku his nickname, and it’s a reminder of their history of bullying and belittling each other.

The Importance of Language and Communication

One of the underlying themes of My Hero Academia is the importance of language and communication. The way we talk to each other can have a powerful impact on our relationships and our sense of self-worth. By using the nickname “Kacchan,” Deku is trying to bridge the gap between himself and Kacchan, and to show that he still values their relationship.

The Importance of Forgiveness

Another important theme in My Hero Academia is the idea of forgiveness. Despite their rocky history, Deku and Kacchan are able to move past their conflicts and work together as allies. This shows that even the most difficult relationships can be repaired with time and effort.


In conclusion, the nickname “Kacchan” is a small but important detail in the complex relationship between Deku and Kacchan in My Hero Academia. It shows us that even bitter rivals can still care about each other, and that language and communication are key to building strong relationships. By understanding the origins of this nickname, we can gain a deeper appreciation for the characters and their journey throughout the series.