Kira Yamato (キラ・ヤマト?) is the main protagonist of Gundam SEED and the main protagonist of the second half of Gundam SEED Destiny. Kira is the adopted son of Caridad Yamato and Cagalli Yula Athha's twin brother.
Personality & Character
Kira is a pacifist, yet despite his dislike of war and conflict, he is more than willing to fight if it means protecting his friends and loved ones. Due to his kind and sensitive nature, he is said to be too soft for war. As the series progresses, Kira becomes traumatized by the people he has killed and the ones he failed to protect, showing that he is atychiphobic (afraid of failure) and resulting in him to becoming obsessed with protecting the Archangel. After his fight with Athrun, Kira begins to wonder what needs to be done to end the conflict(s) and comes to realize that he needs to prevent as many tragedies as possible by trying to fight without killing anyone. However, he is still forced to kill on the battlefield.
In Destiny, Kira's overall personality is calmer, mature, and philosophical. He has gained respect from soldiers in Orb's military due to his piloting skills and being the brother of Orb's ruler. Kira often acts in a fashion which would best be described as being that of the reluctant hero; this maybe due to Kira not viewing himself as a leader type, being a Mobile Suit pilot, often leaving leadership decisions to Lacus or Cagalli.
Skills & Capabilities
Throughout the series, Kira is shown to be the best pilot in the Cosmic Era timeline. He has a sharp sense and rapid information processing ability; He is shown to have great adaptability through his constant improvement of the Strike Gundam's incomplete OS to enhance its performance to match with the combat situation he faces, to include space, Earth's atmosphere, under water and desert environments. Kira has exceptional mobile suit shooting precision which has became the core of his piloting style, after acquiring the Freedom Gundam, as he always try to disable the enemy mobile suits without lethally harming the pilot by aiming for weapons or body parts except the cockpit. He was shown to be overwhelmed by the Providence's DRAGOONs at first; however, he was able to follow and predict the weapon's movement afterwards. By the end of the Second Bloody Valentine War, Kira was able to singlehandedly shot down all of the DRAGOONs from the Legend Gundam.
While lacking any true form of military training, Kira's fighting ability developed quickly and greatly as his time in combat increases, along with his mastery of SEED mode. In contrast to his piloting capabilities, Kira is shown to be inexperienced with handguns, preferring not to use them. He has to be reminded by Mu to remove the safety on his gun in episode 44 while in pursuit of Rau on Mendel station. By the time of the events of Gundam SEED Destiny, however, his handgun skills have improved significantly seen in the second assassination attempt on Lacus Clyne at Copernicus City on the Moon.
Via Hibiki was pregnant with two children - twins who were to be named Kira and Cagalli. Her husband, Ulen, needed a test subject for his artificial womb, a device made to handle the birthing process of Coordinators. To her horror, Ulen used Kira's fetus to modify him into a Coordinator, but the process worked - Kira would be born a flawless Coordinator. Soon after, tragedy struck - a vengeful Rau La Flaga burnt down the house containing Ulen, Via and Al Da Flaga. Both Kira and Cagalli managed to survive the attack. Seeking to hide and protect the children, Caridad and Haruma Yamato adopted Kira while Uzumi Nara Athha would adopt Cagalli.
Not much is known of Kira's past after that, only that he befriended a young boy named Athrun Zala. The two became very close and when Athrun was called away, he gave him a parting gift - a robotic bird named Birdy (Torii in the Japanese version).
However, Kira would meet his old friend sooner than he thought, and in different positions.
Crossfire at Heliopolis
In C.E. 71, Kira lived in the neutral colony Heliopolis where he was spending his peaceful life attending college with his friends Sai Argyle, Kuzzey Buskirk, Miriallia Haw, Tolle Koenig, and Sai's fiancee Flay Allster. However, on January 25th, Heliopolis was attacked by ZAFT forces. The colony was thrown into a state of chaos and the citizens were forced to shelters for evacuation.
During the evacuation, Kira stumbled into a mysterious young lady and decided to follow her, worrying for her safety. As he followed her, they eventually found two Alliance mobile suits, the GAT-X105 Strike and the GAT-X303 Aegis in a production facility. The young lady collapsed in the revelation of Alliance mobile suits in a neutral colony like Heliopolis, blaming her father for the disarray of events. While the young lady was in state of shock, Kira still prioritized for her safety and left her in one of the safety shelters, much to her dismay.
As Kira searches for another shelter, he noticed the fight between a ZAFT soldier and a female officer of the Earth Alliance forces. Since the officer was in danger, Kira alerted her to the presence of another ZAFT soldier behind her. As Kira helped Earth Alliance officer Murrue Ramius, he recognized an approaching ZAFT soldier as his childhood friend Athrun Zala. The two friends were stunned by each other's presence in the battlefield. Murre interrupted them and attempted to shoot Athrun but he fled to the Aegis and escaped. Murrue pursued while taking Kira aboard with her in the Stike. ([[SEED SEED]]: "False Peace")
During their pursuit of Aegis, the Strike was intercepted by Miguel Aiman in his ZGMF-1017 GINN. Murrue was no match for Miguel, as she was unable to control the Strike properly, due in part to her lack of mobile suit piloting skills and the incomplete OS. However, after seeing his friends endangered, Kira took the control of the Strike from Murrue and managed to reconfigure the OS so that the Strike could be used to its full potential before engaging against the opposing GINN. With the Strike's unbelievable combat capabilities, Miguel was forced to retreat.
After the battle, Murrue told Kira and his friends that they have stumbled upon an Earth Alliance military secret. They were forced to follow the Alliance command in exchange for their lives, while Kira was to pilot the Strike. Kira initially refused to pilot the Strike again, but Mu La Flaga told Kira that he was the only one capable of piloting the machine and as such he was the only other person on board the ship who could ensure the safety of both his friends and the Archangel.
Having loaded up the Launcher Striker Pack, Kira attacked the arriving Rau Le Creuset and damaging his CGUE but in doing so also caused damage to the Heliopolis colony. After equipping the Sword Striker Pack, Kira fought and killed a returning Miguel, but the damage caused by the Launcher Strike, and the battle against Miguel and The Le Creuset team caused Heliopolis to collapse. After the Colony's destruction, Kira retrieved a lifepod and brought it to Archangel; among the passengers was Flay Allster.
On the Archangel
After Heliopolis's destruction Kira confronts Athrun for the first time after it, Athrun tries to get him to join ZAFT but he refuses because he has people to protect on the Archangel.
The Archangel's first stop would be Eurasia's asteroid base, Artemis. There, they would attempt to capture Kira and the Strike for their own uses, only to have Nicol Amalfi and his Blitz Gundam sneak in and disable the base, allowing everyone to escape in the confusion. While searching for supplies, Kira encountered a GINN searching through the ruins around Junius Seven. Reluctantly, Kira destroyed the GINN and went to retrieve a lifepod it was looking for. Inside it was Lacus Clyne, pop idol amongst the PLANT and Athrun's fiancee. Kira is attracted to Lacus and the two start to bond, amazed with how everyone has treated her - with the exception of Flay Allster. However, things would turn serious as Natarle Badgiruel would use Lacus as a bargaining chip after a battle goes utterly south, leading to the death of Flay's father. Angered by this, Kira attempts to smuggle Lacus out of the Archangel, though is aided by his friends. Kira calls out Athrun to pick her up and again, Athrun attempts to recruit Kira. When Kira refuses once more, the two vow to shoot each other down the next time they met in combat. Later, Kira is court-martialed by the Archangel's senior staff, but all charges are dropped due to him being a civilian.
After the event, Flay blames Kira for not protecting her father from the ZAFT pilots because he was trying to protect his kind, shaking him. After meeting up with Admiral Halberton, Kira and his friends are given honorary rankings for their services. However, Kira decides to join the other Heliopolis survivors and return to Earth. At the same time, ZAFT soldiers attack the descending Archangel and Halberton's forces attempt to give the battleship a fighting chance to escape. Moved by the gift of a young girl name Elle, Kira decides to stay and fight, only to find Flay trying to suit up herself. After telling Flay that he'll fight for them all, she gives him a kiss, which he eagerly returns.
Engaging the ZAFT Forces, he finds himself fighting not only Athrun, but Yzak Joule and his modified Duel Gundam Assault Shroud. Filled with vengeance of Kira giving him a massive scar on his face, Yzak and Kira find themselves battling close to the Earth's gravitational pull. In the process, the escaping civilian shuttle zips past them, separating them. Yzak, mistaking them for Alliance soldiers, turns his beam rifle on them and destroys the shuttle. Horrified, Kira goes catatonic as the Strike goes into freefall. The Archangel is forced to alter course to rescue Kira, not knowing if the Strike's Phase-Shift Armor can survive reentry.
Recovering, Kira finds Flay by his bedside. As he recovers, Kira's wracked with grief as he realizes that he let everyone down and let them get killed. Noticing Kira's vulnerability, Flay takes advantage of him and sleeps with him during the night. When Kira's called back into action, his methods are much more brutal - all of it being played by Flay.
Enter the Desert Tiger
After the Archangel lands in North Africa, they are attacked by a ZAFT squadron lead by the Desert Tiger, Andrew Waltfeld. Due to Kira being inexperienced in combat in the desert, he could not pilot the Strike properly. He managed to again, reprogram the Strike's operating system to adapt to the environment. With the Desert Dawn intervening, the ZAFT forces retreat. Kira then is reunited with Cagalli Yula Athha, the girl he helped escape from Heliopolis, Cagalli has been worried about him and is shocked to see him piloting a mobile suit. During this time, he and Sai have a fallout due to Sai finding out that Kira had slept with Flay. After a short flare up, Sai storms away and attempts to pilot the Strike Gundam alone, but doesn't have enough time to do so, failing. Kira and Sai's relationship is strained after this.
After a squadron of ZAFT's TMF/A-802 BuCUE's under the command of Andrew destroy the town of Tassil, Cagalli and other members of the Desert Dawn recklessly chase after them. Several resistance fighters, including Cagalli's friend Ahmed El Fasi, are killed, though Kira arrives in time to save Cagalli. Later, the two of them are sent to gather supplies. As Kira and Cagalli sit down for lunch, they meet a (poorly but effectively) disguised Andrew Waltfeld. Blue Cosmos terrorists attack, targeting Andrew. In the confusion, Kira saves Andrew from being shot in the back. Andrew thanks Kira, and he sheds the disguise, Cagalli realizes who he really is.
Andrew's girlfriend Aisha takes Cagalli to get cleaned, When Cagalli confronts Andrew, he pulls out a gun and asks Kira if a war will end when all of your enemies are destroyed. Andrew says he does not know why Kira is fighting his own kind, but as long as Kira pilots the Strike, they are enemies. He then puts the gun away stating that his home is not a battlefield and that Kira had saved him. Because of that, he lets Kira and Cagalli leave. Because they know each other, Kira and Andrew find it difficult to fight in the next battle, where Andrew pilots the new TMF/A-803 LaGOWE to face Kira personally. Kira asks Andrew to stop because the battle is over, but Andrew is determined to keep fighting until one of them is dead. Kira activates his SEED abilities and destroys the LaGOWE that Andrew is piloting. Kira cries after the LaGOWE explodes because he did not want to kill Andrew.
Flight over the Indian Ocean
While traveling on the Indian Ocean, Kira remembers his final battle with Andrew, the death of Flay's father, and the destroyed civilian shuttle and begins to cry. Cagalli hugs him and tells him everything will be okay, and finds herself holding his hand. She tells him not to get the wrong idea, as she simply wants him not to cry anymore. She asks why he is with the Earth Alliance when he is a Coordinator, he recalls being asked that many times.
Later, when the Archangel is undergoing repairs at Orb, Kira ends his relationship with Flay. It is unclear whether he realized she was manipulating him or not but he mentioned that their relationship was a mistake. He also helps create a new OS for naturals to pilot for Orb's MBF-M1 M1 Astray. He also meets Athrun face to face, who is spying to see if the Archangel is in Orb. Although Athrun knows Kira is the Strike pilot, he does not reveal this to the others in his ZAFT team. Before he leaves Orb with the Archangel, Cagalli shows Kira that his parents are watching him depart. Kira asks Cagalli to apologize to them for him, explaining he cannot see them right now, especially when he might say things that he may regret. Kira tells her to be safe and thanks her. As he turns to go inside the Archangel, Cagalli embraces him and tells him not to die and to come back to see her again, which Kira promises.
A Tragic Duel
While en route to the Earth Alliance Alaskan base JOSH-A, the Archangel is attacked by Athrun and his comrades. During the initial skirmish, Kira damages all of ZAFT's opposing mobile suits. However, Kira accidentally kills Nicol Amalfi, a close friend of Athrun's and pilot of the GAT-X207 Blitz, when Nicol tries to protect Athrun. Athrun realizes that Nicol's death could have been prevented by killing Kira, and he vows to do so the next time they meet. In their next battle, Kira's friend Tolle Koenig is killed when Athrun destroys the FX-550 Skygrasper he was piloting. Kira and Athrun (both activating their SEED abilities) try to kill each other to avenge their dead friends, and Kira winds up seriously injured when Athrun attaches the Aegis to the Strike and bails out before the Aegis self-destructs. In the confusion, the Archangel is forced to retreat, leaving Kira behind.
Acquiring the ZGMF-X10A Freedom
Unbeknown to everyone, someone else was watching the final duel between the two friends - Junk Guild tech Lowe Guele. Pulling Kira out of the Strike's wreckage, Lowe delivered him to Reverend Malchio, who in turn delivered him to Lacus and her father, Siegel Clyne in their home within the PLANT. During this time, Lacus and Kira grow closer to each other and he seemed to have developed feelings for her. Lacus tells Kira that he is safe and that he can stay as long as he wants to. However, he overhears a message to Lacus' father Siegel Clyne, from Council member Eileen Canaver that PLANT chairman Patrick Zala lied about ZAFT's newest major operation and that the bulk of ZAFT forces are actually on their way to crush JOSH-A in Alaska, the main base of the Earth Alliance military and where the Archangel is currently stationed. Kira decides to leave PLANTs and save his friends on board the Archangel. Lacus helps Kira enter a ZAFT base and gives him the ZGMF-X10A Freedom, then kisses his cheek. Kira then returns to Earth in his new mobile suit.
During the Battle of JOSH-A, Murrue warns Kira about the underground Cyclops system and Kira alerts both ZAFT and Earth Alliance soldiers of the impending danger. Yzak Joule refuses to believe him and attacks Kira with the Duel. Even though Yzak killed Elle and the other refugees, Kira refrains from killing him in return. Instead, he disables the Duel and saves Yzak from the Cyclops blast, keeping with his vow to limit casualties for any and all sides on the battlefield.
After the battle, Kira is reunited with the crew of the Archangel. However, he tells them that he isn't siding with ZAFT nor with the Earth Alliance - he just wants to fight to save everyone from the war. Kira's actions have an effect on the rest of the crew later on. Returning to ORB, Kira is reunited with Cagalli, who thought Kira was dead. The reunion was cut short, however - Muruta Azrael, leader of Blue Cosmos, thus de facto leader of the Earth Alliance, arrived outside ORB's territorial boundaries with an ultimatum - join the Earth Alliance and help them wipe out ZAFT or be considered an ally to ZAFT's forces and be destroyed. Knowing these terms are unacceptable, Kira heeds Uzumi's call and aids in the defense of ORB. With the aid of the captured Buster Gundam and it's pilot Dearka Elsman, along with the sudden arrival of Athrun within the Justice Gundam, the first invasion is repelled. Afterwards, the three pilots talk about their place in the war
The Earth Alliance attacks Orb again. Uzumi Nara Athha gives Cagalli a photograph of her and Kira when they were infants and tells her that "although she is leaving her father she will not be alone, for she will be with her brother". When Cagalli shows Kira the photo after the Archangel and the Kusanagi ascend into space, he is shocked, especially since the woman holding them is not Caridad Yamato, the only mother he has known, but in fact their biological mother Via Hibiki.
The Mendel Colony conspiracy
Hoping to persuade his father, Patrick Zala, that the war was pointless, Athrun leaves the crew and heads back to the PLANT, Kira following partway. Soon after, the battleship Eternal makes its escape, holding Athrun, Lacus and the surprisingly alive Andrew Waltfeld inside. Kira comes to the rescue and drives the pursuers away. Stopping within the Mendel Colony, the Three Ships Alliance is formed as Kira and Lacus reunite. Lacus, however, breaks down and cries in Kira's arms, finally able to grieve for her father's death due to Patrick's zeal in wiping out the moderates within the PLANT Supreme Council.
Soon after, both ZAFT and EA forces discover the Archangel in Mendel Colony and attempt to take care of the battleship. In the resulting battle, Kira and Mu would chase Rau deep inside Mendel Colony and into the laboratories within. It is there that Rau revealed the truth of Kira's parentage and who he truly - a perfect Coordinator, the Ultimate Coordinator. In turn, he also reveals his identity as a clone of Mu's father, Al Da Flaga and his goal of ensuring that humanity, both Naturals and Coordinators, end up extinct. Kira swore to stop him, incidentally knocking off Rau's mask. Using their shock as cover, Rau escapes and launches the captured Flay inside a lifepod. Reentering the battle, he hears Flay's voice, calling out for someone to save her, that she had the key to ending the war. Kira moves to rescue her, but by doing so, he's disabled by the Forbidden and Raider Gundams.
After Athrun drags Kira back, Kira ends up coming to inside his bed with Lacus watching. Hallucinating, Kira instead sees Flay during their moment and has another panic attack, leading to Kira to cry on Lacus's lap, stopping Cagalli from asking about the picture and their parents. The day before the final battle, the Junk Guild is called in to repair and resupply the trio of battleships. There, Kira finally meets Lowe face to face.
Battle at Jachin Due
Just before the final battle, Lacus helps Kira come to terms with his true origins and admits her love for him by giving him the ring that belonged to her mother. Kira responds with a thanks for her support and kisses her on the cheek.
In the ensuing battle, Kira, using the Freedom Gundam's METEOR system, engages the Earth Alliance's Peacekeeper force, aiding in shooting down all the nukes before they can get to the PLANTs. In the process, Kira encounters Rau again, this time in his new Providence Gundam. The fight is utterly onesided as the Providence's DRAGOON System overpowers the METEOR system. It is here that Rau's plan comes to be known: as the flawed clone of Al Da Flaga, Rau seeks to punish humanity - both Natural and Coordinator alike - for their actions. During the fight, a lifepod from the ravaged Dominion battleship nears the battle, holding Flay. Kira attempts to rescue Flay again, intercepting a beam rifle shot. Sadly, their reunion is bittersweet: a DRAGOON shot destroys the lifepod, killing Flay. Kira is overcome with grief, realizing that she could have been saved had he focused more on the battle than trying to get to her.
With a brand new resolve, Kira returns to fight Rau one last time. Though the Freedom is damaged, Kira cripples the Providence with an attack that penetrates the cockpit. Even though the beam missed, Rau was killed by a beam of nuclear energy from GENESIS caused by Jachin Due's self-destruction, which vaporized the Providence before the superweapon itself is destroyed by the self-destruction of the Justice. As hostilities come to an end, Kira is seen drifting out of the Freedom's cockpit, wondering what humanity's path shall be. He then spotted Birdie, leading Athrun and Cagalli in Cagalli's Strike Rouge to him. As Athrun goes to fetch him, Kira says, "It's our world."
Gundam SEED Destiny
Kira has been living on a secluded island (one of the Marshall Islands) in Orb territory since the end of the war. He and Lacus have spent the last two years after the war assisting Reverend Malchio and Kira's adoptive mother with his orphanage. The Junius Seven Colony Drop Incident, which triggers the Second Bloody Valentine War forces the group to move in with Murrue Ramius and Andrew Waltfeld at their shared mansion in Orb.
The mansion is destroyed by an unknown force of Coordinators trying to assassinate Lacus. The attempt on Lacus's life forces Kira to once again pilot the Freedom and participate in combat in order to protect his loved one, despite her reluctance in his taking up arms again. He still abides by his policy to limit casualties, by disabling the opposing mobile suits in SEED mode, though the pilots then self-destruct their machines briefly shocking him.
Orb joins the Earth Alliance, forcing Kira and Lacus return to the Archangel and take up secretive residence in the Kingdom of Scandinavia. Before leaving Orb, Kira kidnaps Cagalli from her arranged marriage to Yuna Roma Seiran, despite Cagalli's initial objections. He also helps Cagalli realize her mistake in letting Orb side with the Earth Alliance and helps her come to terms with her errors in judgement, despite her good intentions.
Return to the battlefield
After a period of being part of the Archangel crew, Lacus decides to go into space to investigate what is going on, although Kira initially objects as he would not be able to watch over her, she assures him she will be careful and holds him to reassure him. Lacus, Andrew, and the shuttle they have stolen are nearly shot down, but Kira protects them.
Kira continues to fight in the rebuilt ZGMF-X10A Freedom. His first sortie with the Archangel is in the Dardanelles, trying to stop the OMNI/Orb offensive against the ZAFT battleship Minerva. He destroys the Minervas main "Tannhäuser" cannon, causing severe damage to the ship, Kira then disarms several mobile suits on both sides of the skirmish.
Kira is blamed for causing the death of ZGMF-X2000 GOUF Ignited pilot Heine Westenfluss by the hands of ZGMF-X88S Gaia pilot Stella Loussier (both were trying to attack Kira and Heine got in Stella's way).
Kira, accompanied by Cagalli and Miriallia Haw, secretly meet with Athrun in Crete, where they are spied on by Lunamaria Hawke. Athrun says they will not end the war by their methods and Cagalli must return to Orb if she wants Orb to leave the Earth Alliance. Kira tells Athrun that he distrusts ZAFT's leader, Gilbert Durandal, since Lacus was targeted by a special ops team of Coordinators using newly designed ZAFT Mobile Suits. Though Athrun returns to ZAFT, both sides are affected by the other's words.
Kira intervenes again in the Earth Forces/Orb battle with the Minerva in Crete, where he saves the Minerva from a possible finishing blow. Kira confronts by Athrun in the ZGMF-X23S Saviour. Due to the situation around them, primarily his distraught twin sister, Kira declares that if Athrun thinks that the Archangel's presence in trying to stop the battle is pointless and that Cagalli is to blame for Orb's path, then that makes Athrun his enemy. Kira easily defeats Athrun this time, and dismantles the Saviour, taking care not to injure Athrun.
Freedom's Final Battle
Kira and the Archangel soon go to Berlin to fight against the monstrous GFAS-X1 Destroy, and are eventually joined by the Minerva, along with Shinn Asuka's Impulse. Kira hits Destroy's chest cannons with its beam sabers as it was about to fire on Shinn's Impulse Gundam, dealing it a finishing blow that inevitably results in the death of its pilot, Stella Loussier, a result of the fatal side effects of Extended drug use which Shinn misunderstood in anger to be caused by Freedom's destruction of the Destroy Gundam.
Soon after, PLANT Chairman Gilbert Durandal orders the destruction of the Archangel and the Freedom during the mission code-named "Operation: Angel Down". The Freedom is attacked by Shinn and his ZGMF-X56S Impulse, who has prepared for this battle with the help of Rey Za Burrel in creating counter measures about Kira's own weakness in battle, including the refusal to target the cockpits of enemy mobile suits. Taking advantage of Kira's unwillingness to fight against him, Kira's confusion about the situation and Impulse's ability to replace damaged parts on-the-fly, Shinn defeats Kira. Kira shuts down Freedom's nuclear reactor before losing consciousness and is retrieved from the ocean by Cagalli in the MBF-02 Strike Rouge.
Protecting Eternal and Acquiring ZGMF-X20A Strike Freedom
Soon after, Athrun Zala and Meyrin Hawke defect from ZAFT after being framed by Rey Za Burrel and Gilbert Durandal. While they recover from being shot down. Lacus and her ship Eternal come under attack by newer ZAFT's Zaku and Gouf squadrons after investigating the remnants of the space colony Mendel for clues about Chairman Durandal's plans. Kira rushes into space in Cagalli's Strike Rouge mounted on booster rockets, but the Strike Rouge is seriously damaged from numerous attacks.
Andrew Waltfeld provides cover in a ZGMF-X88S Gaia and tells Kira to go into the Eternal to pick up his new unit. On the Eternal, Kira and Lacus are reunited and she presents Kira with the newly constructed ZGMF-X20A Strike Freedom albeit with some hesitation. He uses his new mobile suit to disable the attacking forces in only two minutes.
Kira then returns to Earth with the Strike Freedom to help Cagalli defend Orb, which is under ZAFT attack because Yuna Roma Seiran and his father Unato had provided refuge for the Logos leader Lord Djibril. Lacus Clyne flies down in the ZGMF-X19A Infinite Justice Gundam to deliver it to Athrun Zala.
Second Battle of Orb
Shinn in the Destiny tries to defeat Cagalli's ORB-01 Akatsuki, when Kira arrives to defend her. While Cagalli withdraws to deal with the political situation, Kira and Shinn battle. After Shinn has to withdraw back to the Minerva, Kira then disables many of the ZAFT mobile suits invading Orb. Shinn relaunches accompanied by Rey in the Legend. They double-team Kira until Athrun arrives in Infinite Justice, after which Kira faces off against Rey's Legend, while Athrun engages Shinn in melee combat.
After the ZAFT forces withdraw, Athrun loses consciousness. Kira, in Strike Freedom, catches the Infinite Justice in mid-air, preventing him from crashing. Back aboard the Archangel, Kira removes Athrun's helmet and flight suit, revealing that Athrun's wounds have re-opened and are bleeding profusely. Kira then orders a stretcher to bring Athrun to the Archangel's sick bay, where he recovers, tended to by Meyrin.
Return to space
Lord Djibril escapes into space during the battle. ZAFT forces withdraw from Orb and the Minerva is sent to reinforce the ZAFT Lunar Team's attempt to destroy the Earth Alliance's Lunar-Based Laser Cannon, Requiem which has fired and destroyed some of the PLANTs.
During that time, Kira is promoted to Admiral and appointed as the Commander of the Orb Space Fleet. The Archangel is also officially commissioned into the Orb Military Fleet and assigned as Kira's flagship. Archangel is ordered to the lunar city of Copernicus to gather intelligence on Durandal's operations. Cagalli stays in Orb to coordinate the recovery and lead the country.
The Archangel returns to space and docks at Copernicus City. Kira, Lacus, Athrun, and Meyrin attempt to gather intelligence under the guise of a shopping trip. There, they receive Meer Campbell's red Haro containing a message from Meer saying she is afraid of being killed. Athrun and Meyrin suspect it is a trap, but Lacus insists on meeting Meer.
It is a trap. Sarah, Meer's bodyguard, has organized a team of assassins to kill Lacus. Athrun, Kira, and Meyrin fight them off, protecting Lacus and Meer. Athrun requests backup from the Archangel which sends Mu La Flaga (Neo Roanoke) to aid them in the ORB-01 Akatsuki. After his arrival, the badly injured Sarah, makes a final attempt to kill Lacus, but Meer is mortally wounded instead.
Shortly after Meer's funeral, Durandal announces his "Destiny Plan" to the world and his vow to eliminate anybody who does not follow him. Orb, the Kingdom of Scandinavia, and the Atlantic Federation all denounce Durandal's plan. Orb orders their space fleet to stop Durandal from accomplishing the "Destiny Plan" and prevent the destruction of Orb.
Battle of Messiah: Assault on REQUIEM
In the final battle, Kira reluctantly orders Athrun and the Archangel to destroy the Requiem immediately, after Athrun realizes that they were trapped by ZAFT in an attempt to contain their forces while the two superweapons are preparing to anniliate the nation of Orb and its Miltary Forces with it. As a result, Kira had to ask Athrun, Archangel and the rest of the Orb Forces to split off and destroy the Requiem before it fires, while he himself together with the Eternal and the DOM Trooper Squad heads to deal with the space fortress and the ZAFT defense forces there, with some timely assistance from Yzak and Dearka in the process, Messiah. Due to this, Rey in his ZGMF-X666S Legend tries to give chase, but was stopped by Kira in his Strike Freedom, literally forcing the split-off with Shinn's Destiny Gundam to chase the Archangel together with the Minerva. It was then that Kira realized the combat style resembles uncannily to Rau Le Creuset's Providence Gundam, and was confirmed by Rey himself to be another clone of him. However, knowing about his genetic past allowed him to remind Rey that the life he is given should only be his alone and not someone else's, before destroying all of Legend Gundam's DRAGOONs before taking it out with its DRAGOON Full Burst Attack, leaving the Legend severely disabled and unable to battle as a result before heading off to destroy Messiah using his own MeTEOR unit, coordinated with Eternal's missile attack.
Kira then exits the Strike Freedom and searches for Gilbert Durandal in the command center of Messiah. While they are talking and pointing guns at each other Talia Gladys, the captain of the Minerva as well as Durandal's lover, and Rey Za Burrel, who has been Gilbert's most dedicated follower, also arrive and draw pistols. Rey shoots Durandal, he had been enlightened by Kira's words and dreams of a future, which would have been suppressed by Durandal's Destiny Plan. Before Kira leaves the Messiah, Talia Gladys asks Kira (Athrun in the Final Plus and HD Remaster) to tell Murrue Ramius, her Archangel counterpart, that she has a son and she wishes Murrue to meet him someday. Kira (and Athrun) agreed and he left the Messiah in Strike Freedom before it falls onto the moon surface and explodes. Talia and Rey stayed with Durandal and perished together with the fallen fortress.
Afterwards, at the ravished Orb memorial previously visited by Shinn and Kira in episode 8, Athrun introduces Kira to Shinn as the pilot of Freedom. Shinn is stunned by the identity of the pilot whom he tried to defeat numerous times, and previously met before without that knowledge. Kira asks Shinn to make peace with him and asks Shinn to join him and Athrun in the fight for humanity's peace. A crying Shinn agrees.
In the ending credits of Gundam SEED Destiny: Special Edition, Kira is wearing a white ZAFT uniform reserved for important military officials. When Kira and Lacus saw each other in the PLANTs they immediately rushed towards one another and hugged each other, surprising most of the people present.
- Athrun Zala
- Kira and Athrun share a similar compassion and desire for peace, appalling war and killing. Because of this, they meet each other ideally often, and results in joining sides. When enemies, they are known to hesitate in attacking each other, and prefer offering the other the chance to stand down without fighting. The deaths of Nicol Amalfi and Tolle Koenig put a strain on their relationship, even after joining forces, the two expressing how they aren't sure if hey can forgive what the other had done, and even saying they felt like killing each other. On the battlefield, their connection shows well as they can naturally play off of the others moves for a strong team-up and combination attacks. Even though they were enemies and eventually allies, Kira and Athrun had a brotherly relationship such as having concern for either of their well-beings or fighting as though they were rivals.
- Lacus Clyne
- Kira and Lacus initially shared a bond of being the only Coordinators on a ship full of naturals. This layed way for the two learning of each others true kindness and gentle personalities. The two got the chance to become closer during Kira's time in Lacus's care at her manor, spending much time to get to know each other. This resulted in Lacus's abandonment of her relationship with Athrun in favor of Kira. Lacus understands Kira’s ideals by providing him with a new sword to fight his enemies and to protect his friends. When Lacus decides to return to space, Kira worries about Lacus being in danger. Kira is also shown to be willing to risk his life just to come to her when his mobile suit was almost destroyed when trying to get to Eternal to protect Lacus. Kira and Lacus provide a great deal of comfort and trust for each other. The actions and feelings that Kira provide for Lacus show that she is indeed his true love.
- Flay Allster
- While Flay expressed dislike for Coordinators, Kira felt hurt that he qualified in the category while he wanted her companionship. Kira eventually develops a relationship with Flay because of her seduction and because he felt responsible for her father’s death. Flay’s feelings are seemingly artificial, an act to get into his mind, creating a development for Kira causing him to fight more aggressively, and kill willingly. Despite this initial relationship, Kira's kindness turned Flay around in her opinions, and caused her to truly fall in love with him. The inability to save her life was a traumatic experience for Kira. Through time, Kira was able to move on from Flay in order to continue his relationship with Lacus.
- Cagalli Yula Athha
- Even before learning they were siblings, Cagalli and Kira have had a bond with one another. Cagalli provides an ear to listen, and a shoulder to lean on when Kira needed to speak his woes. This led to a great care between one another later on, such as Cagalli showing great sorrow when she thought Kira had died. Their bond tightened further after learning of their shared past, and the two became dedicated to protecting one another in battles.
- Shinn Asuka
- Shinn and Kira shared a feeling of melancholy about death and destruction, but opposite on ideals when Shinn desires to destroy in retaliation, while Kira wants to rebuild. Knowing each other primarily as enemies in mobile suits, Shinn had a hatred for Kira and his methods of seizing battles, as well as killing Stella Loussier. But in the end, Kira was able to successfully share his ideals of rebuilding the future with Shinn. The two finally became friends and allies, as Shinn accepted Kira's offer to join him on this mission.
- Mu La Flaga
- Mu was an early motivator for Kira as he struggled to get inside a cockpit and fight. He taught Kira lessons of war and battle that ultimately helped the young pilot to decide what was worth fighting for. The two had an unspoken warriors bond as they relied on each others support and abilities in battle, successfully protecting the Archangel. Mu had a strong respect and concern for Kira; amazed by his potent piloting abilities and willing to fight for the crew, but also worried on the mental affect taking toll on him. Whenever Kira was troubled by a situation or stress, he would always come to help him.
- Rau Le Creuset
- Kira and Rau had a strong discontent of each other. Rau's strongest desire was to erase Kira from existence, calling him the reason people hate and kill, believing Kira's genetic superiority is what all man craves and wants to surpass. Kira in retaliation believed Rau to be insane, claiming genetics are not what defines people. Rau had an uncanny way of getting into Kira's head, and under his skin mentally. Kira's hatred for Rau became solidified when Rau needlessly killed Flay Allster, just to make Kira suffer. In the end, due to his insanity and genocidal desires, Kira determined Rau cannot be allowed to live, and willingly killed Rau to rid the world of his dark influences and wrath.
- Rey Za Burrel
- Rey, inheriting the sins of Rau before him, had a passed down hatred for Kira, not only for reasons in ideals, but also for killing Rau. Kira's alleged Newtype powers was able to sense the pain and hatred in Rey, and even sensed the lingering influence of Rau le Creuset in Rey's mind. In the end though, Kira's words and ideals were able to reach Rey's mind and heart, breaking him free of the binds of his predecessor. Rey eventually assisted Kira in taking down Gilbert Dullindal, having belief in Kira's way, now knowing he didn't have to be Rau's ghost anymore.
- Tolle Koenig
- Tolle was one of Kira's closer friends, part of his inner circle while attending college at Heliopolis. Tolle was very supportive and friendly to Kira, and always stuck his neck out to defend Kira, such as vouching him to be good when it was revealed Kira was a Coordinator to the Archangel crew. He was also very willing to risk his life in helping Kira on the battlefield by supporting him in a Skygrasper after receiving some training and the means to pilot. Tolle's untimely death was enough of a push to Kira's emotions to make him berserk in anger, willing to furiously kill his best friend, Athrun Zala, out of revenge.
- "What the hell can you hope to protect, when your feelings are the only weapon you got!?"
- "If I have the power to make a difference, I should put it to good use."
- "A world gained through battle will only bring forth new battles."
- "Wow, this dress is amazing!"
- "I'm not... even if that's true... I am not defined by my abilities alone!"
- "The world is worth protecting!"
- "I've made up my mind never to shed a tear again."
- Day in and day out, this all I do... I fight battles in a mobile suit and help with its development and maintenance... why? because I can."
- Stop!... If I'd took this seriously you wouldn't stand a chance in hell against me!
- Kira is currently the holder of the highest military career advance in Gundam, starting at the rank of Ensign and getting promoted to Admiral status without moving through any other ranks. This growth in rank surpasses even Char Aznable's record advance during the One Year War, in which he was promoted two ranks from Lieutenant Junior Grade to Lieutenant Commander after the Battle of Loum, and promoted two ranks again from Lieutenant Commander to Captain after joining the Mobile Assault Force.
- In the history of Gundam, Kira is the first protagonist character that joined his antagonist group (ZAFT) that he had been fighting against in both wars. Yet he didn't have much of a choice since his love interest Lacus Clyne was invited to become Chairwoman of the PLANTs. However, it should be noted that, despite its unofficial status, the crew of the White Base joined the Char Aznable-lead Principality of Zeon at the end of Mobile Suit Gundam: Awakening, Escalation, Confrontation with the exception of Amuro Ray, who is killed before the story's end, and Kai Shiden, who returns to Earth, having gotten tired of the fighting.
- The Astray X manga features mercenary Canard Pars, the only failed Ultimate Coordinator prototype known to survived. Canard, consumed by an inferiority complex and hatred towards Kira, and constantly thought fruitlessly searches for him with the intention to defeat him and become the true Ultimate Coordinator. During the course of the series he abandons this goal and finally comes to terms with himself. It is unknown whether Kira is aware of Canards existence. However, the two Ultimate Coordinators meet directly each other in Super Robot Wars W, as rival at first, and as ally after Canard joins Valstrok (the battleship of the game's protagonists', Kazuma and Mihiro) as has been done previously by Kira.
- In Delta Astray, Reverand Malchio refers towards the children playing that "Master Kira Often played with the Children". This could show more of Kira's soft side and more of his character outside of the battlefield.
- There is some irony between Kira's seiyuu, Soichiro Hoshi, and his English voice actor, Matt Hill. In the English dub of Gundam Seed Matt Hill voices Kira (whom is originally voiced by Soichiro) and In the Japanese dub of the popular American cartoon series "Ed, Edd n Eddy" Soichiro voices Ed (Whom in turn was originally voiced by Matt Hill).
- Matt Hill voices Soarin' in My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, alongside SEED voice actresses, Maryke Hendrikse who voices Spitfire, Tabitha St. Germain who voices Rarity and Chantal Strand who voices Diamond Tiara. These three voice Lunamaria Hawke, Flay Allster and Lacus Clyne respectively.
- Kira Yamato is one of the most popular Gundam Seed characters, having placed 1st place in most recent polls.
- In many installments of the Super Robot Wars franchise, Kira has been called out on his actions during various moments of both Gundam SEED and Gundam SEED Destiny. One of the more recognizable moments has Kamille Bidan, Quatre Raberba Winner, and Neon Genesis Evangelion's Shinji Ikari berate Kira when he attempts to talk down to Sai when he had the mental breakdown about how no one understands how he was thrust into a war as one of the two sole defenders of the Archangel when the rest of them assures they went through the same things as he did.
- Kira's voice actor, Soichiro Hoshi is also the voice actor of Macross Frontier's character Brera Sterne. Coincidentally, both Kira and Brera are superior pilots in their series. Their boarding machine ZGMF-X20A Strike Freedom and VF-27γ Lucifer are also technologically more advanced than the most other mechs in both series. The two met and serve as formidable characters in Super Robot Wars L, Super Robot Wars Z2 Saisei-hen, Super Robot Wars Z2 Hakai-hen and Another Century's Episode: R.
- Some fans consider Kira as a newtype due to the newtype flash effect when he launches Strike Freedom's Super DRAGOONs for the first time. He was also able to sense the presences of those who are also presumed to be newtypes such as Mu La Flaga/Neo Roanoke and Rey Za Burrel which also led to speculation that he is a newtype. In Gundam Musou series, Kira will become a newtype after completing some requirements in the game. But in Super Robot Wars series, newtype is not listed as one of his passive skill/ability, which still makes the uncertainty whether he is a newtype or not.
- Unlike in the TV series, in Super Robot Wars J Kira was first aroused his SEED Factor at his battle with Andrew Waltfeld's BuCUE.
- In some Super Robot Wars series, Kira was rescued by different characters after his brutal battle with Athrun in Orb, which resulted in the destruction of their units, GAT-X105 Strike and GAT-X303 Aegis. Only in Super Robot Wars W he was rescued by Lowe Guele, the person who save him accordance with the original story.
- In Gundam SEED, there are a lot of scenes in which Kira was crying. But in Gundam SEED Destiny, not even once did he cry.
- In most video games such as Super Robot Wars series, every enemy units that was defeated by Kira will explode without remnants, just as if the unit was defeated by the other characters. A contradiction to Kira's habit to spares his opponents' life. However, it should be noted that one of his mainstay spells is "Mercy", which allows an opponent to stay alive with 10 HP should Kira's attack be enough to kill them, which goes along with his character.
- In reference to his no kill rule, there is a hidden unique mechanic to his build. he doesn't gain bonus morale for defeating an opponent like other characters do, to resemble his sparing nature. To balance, kira has higher base stats, likely referencing to his status as the Ultimate Coordinator.
- Kira won the Anime Grand Prix award as the best male anime character in 2002 and 2005, and selected as the runner up in 2003, 2004 and 2006. It was an achievement that can not be exceeded by any other male Gundam characters so far. His achievements can only be defeated by his lover, Lacus Clyne who won the award in 2002, 2004, 2005 and 2006 and won the 2nd place several times as the best female anime character.
- Kira is the only protagonist of Gundam series ever to win Animage's Anime Grand Prix Award in the category of anime character of the year. Another Gundam series' character who ever won the same tribute are Duo Maxwell, Athrun Zala, Four Murasame, Elpeo Ple and Lacus Clyne, where none of them have played a role as the protagonist in their series.
- The only moment where Kira is seen wearing the ZAFT red pilot suit in the anime is during his first action with the Freedom Gundam.
- In the Omake Gundam Seed Character Theater, it is implied that spicy foods are Kira's favorite.
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Mobile Suit Gundam SEED + , Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny + , Mobile Suit Gundam SEED (Novel) + , Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Re: + , Mobile Suit Gundam SEED (Manga) + , Mobile Suit Gundam SEED: Never Ending Tomorrow +
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