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Cerberus

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Cerberus
ケルベロス
Keroberos; False Form
Kero-chan
Series Cardcaptor Sakura
Profile
Also Known As Kero-chan
Relations Clow Reed (creator)
Sakura Kinomoto (caretaker/master)
Residence Tomoeda, Japan (residence)
Hong Kong, China (former residence)
Powers Various powers related to the Clow Cards
Powers over The Light, The Firey, The Earthy and their subordinates
Flight and Firebreathing
Characteristics
Gender Male
Eyes Black (presumably)
Appearances
First Appearance
(Manga)
Chapter 1
First Appearance
(Anime)
Episode 1: Sakura and the Mysterious Magic Book
Last Appearance
(Anime)
Cardcaptor Sakura Movie 2: The Sealed Card
Voices
Seiyuu Aya Hisakawa
Masaya Onosaka (true form)
English Matt Hill
Richard Newman (Cardcaptors)
Wendee Lee
Dave Wittenberg (2nd movie)
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Cerberus (ケルベロス, Keruberosu) is a fictional character in Clamp's manga and anime series Cardcaptor Sakura. His name is more commonly known in its Greek version, Keroberos, which is also often shortened to Kero-chan or just Kero.

He is one of the two Guardians of the Clow Cards created by Clow Reed, along with Yue. Before his death, Clow appointed Kero as the one to select the potential candidate to be the next master of the cards, Cerberus himself, and his fellow guardian, Yue. After Sakura Kinomoto inadvertently releases the cards, Cerberus chooses her to be the candidate and teaches her the basics of capturing the cards.

Naming

Keroberos's name and form are based on Cerberus from Greek mythology, a large three-headed beast who was assigned to guard the gates of Hades, a parallel to Cerberus’s duty in the Cardcaptor Sakura storyline where he guarded a deck of cards from the cover of the book that contained them.

In Cardcaptors, his name was changed to Keroberos, but was nicknamed Kero. In Japanese this is pronounced "keh-ro" in Japanese, but "kee-ro" in English.

In Greek dub, his nickname was changed to Juki but his original name remained the same.

Appearance

Kero keroberos

Cerberus in both his false (right) and true (left) forms.

In his borrowed form, Keroberos resembles a lion cub or rather a stuffed animal or a plush toy with yellow-orange fur, big ears, and small white wings.

However, his true form is that of a huge, tawny maneless lion or cougar, with enormous angelic white wings and chestplate and helmet of beaten metal, studded with a large red precious stone.

Personality

Illustration 02 31

Cerberus and Spinel Sun in false form while holding the star key

By nature, Keroberos is bossy, demanding, and gluttonous, but he also genuinely cares about Sakura and believes that she will become the next Master of the Clow as he acts as her guide to gather the Cards.

He is responsible for giving Sakura the Sealing Wand, having appointed her to be the one to recapture the Cards she unknowingly released.

Kero's hobbies include playing video games and eating snacks and sweets (he loves sweets more than almost anything), even though, drawing his power from the sun, he generates his own energy, and does not need to eat to survive but unlike Yue, he enjoys the finer things in life.

He has a particular fondness for cake, cookies, and chocolates. In the anime, he was also intoxicated by a box of brandy chocolates, causing him to become drunk.

Despite his fondness for sweets and other food items, he is not often above sharing, provided there is enough left for him (except in episode 10, season 3 when he intoxicated Spinel by unknowingly forcing a doughnut into Spinel's mouth, resulting in the creature gaining a sugar high before proceeding to run all over Tomeda Elementary, causing havoc).

Keroberos also enjoys being filmed by Sakura's best friend, Tomoyo Daidōji and, unlike his Mistress, relishes the costume accessories he is asked to wear for these recordings. Even though he has been a willing servant all his life, Keroberos can be somewhat of an egomaniac, obsessing over his "coolness", and is seen bragging about himself after watching most of Tomoyo's recordings.

Despite his sometimes erratic behavior, Cerberus is remarkably intelligent. He is knowledgeable not only on the Clow Cards but also on all forms of mysticism, with a knack for reading magical auras. At one point this leads him astray when Kaho Mizuki tricks him by using her strong moon-aspected aura to cover up Yue's, preventing Cerberus from realizing Yue's false form. In addition to this, Cerberus is also not quite as carefree and without inhibitions as he seems at first glance.

CLAMP describes Cerberus's "favorite thing" as "loud fun", and his least favorite as "being sad or lonely". Cerberus doesn't like wallowing in life's sad and depressing facts, which could possibly why he takes up so many indulgent pastimes like food and video games to distract himself from them.

This does not, however mean that he is immune to these realities, as is shown in the first arc of the series when he is seen frequently musing about his fears concerning the rapidly approaching Final Judgment to the point of obsession. His lack of communication regarding the Final Judgment nearly causes Sakura to fail as she is unaware that Yue can turn the power of any Clow card under his jurisdiction back at her but thanks to Kaho, Sakura is eventually able to defeat Yue, becoming the new Master of the Clow Cards while also gaining a new Staff in the process as with Kaho's Bell of the Moon, her Sealing Staff changes from its original structure to resemble that of a single star.

Voice and Mannerisms

Because the Clow Cards had been in Osaka for a long time, Keroberos speaks in the Osaka dialect, which is famous for its plain speech and unique slang. In the English dub of the series, his plush voice is rather high and he speaks with a New York accent, but transformed, he speaks with a more adult, low pitch.

Relationships

Sakura: Keroberos’s relationship with Sakura extends far beyond merely a servant and his master. Numerous times throughout the series Keroberos himself points out that he sees Sakura as a good friend before a master.

Despite the fact that his sole duty at that point was to help the young girl collect cards and prepare for the Final Judgment, Keroberos carefully keeps the young Cardcaptor oblivious to the upcoming confrontation. Even when Keroberos himself faces intense nightmares about Yue’s oncoming judgment, he refuses to tell Sakura anything, brushing her off when she brings up the topic. Similarly, during the second arc he keeps from Sakura that Yue’s power is quickly wasting away. When she confronts his about this afterwards her guardian willingly admits that he had concealed the truth from Sakura to keep her happy.

Keroberos acts as a good companion to Sakura, and often comforts her when she is in need of it, and makes sure she knows that he’s there if she needs him. Although the two have gotten into arguments in the past, they generally care for each other and will protect her or her friends if they're in danger.

Yue: In some ways, Keroberos is closer to Yue than many other characters in the series: they have known each other longest, after all, and some variations of the storyline have even introduced the two as brothers. When Sakura is being tested by Eriol, Yue is the only character that Keroberos will talk to over the matter, and every time a new bit of information comes up his first action is to rush off to his fellow guardian. Additionally, it is certain that Keroberos showed more than a little paranoia during the second half of the series when Yue’s life was threatened. Nevertheless, there is some petty jealousy Keroberos feels against Yue as he was always under the impression that Clow Reed (and Sakura) favoured Yue over him revealed during a rant and tantrum he threw after Sakura told Yue he didn't have to do any chores (partly brought on because she also offered Yue her bed while he was expected to sleep on the floor).

Kero and syaoran

Cerberus in his true form squashing Syaoran.

Syaoran: Keroberos often argues with Syaoran, who insults him by calling Kero "plush toy" or "stuffed animal" and whom he calls "brat" (小僧, kozō) in return. When Kero was unable to change into his true form, he responded by biting Syaoran's finger in anger or just yelling at the youngster in general.

However, as seen in the second movie, Kero, having regained his powers does not hesitate to morph into his true form, just to prove a point to Syaoran. This shows when the Change card switched their minds and they had to hold each other in an embrace, they were both reluctant to do so.

This likely stems from Syaoran's initial arrogance and confidence that he will take over the Clow Cards, despite Keroberos's claims that Sakura is the actual Cardcaptor.

Even though the two of them have never gotten along, Keroberos bears no objections after some time when Syaoran joins Sakura whenever she goes out on magic-related missions. He also shows sympathy when Sakura is upset and confused over her feelings for Syaoran, and comforts his master despite the fact that he is not the best of friends with the boy in question. All of this suggests that while the two will never be close, Keroberos is at least accepting of Syaoran.

Powers and Abilities

Sun guardians

Cerberus, like Spinel Sun has sun based powers.

His powers are based on the Sun and his power comes from Western magic.

Sensing: Keroberos has the ability to sense the Clow Cards and magical presences. While he can usually determine their exact attributes through this Sensing ability, it has been proven that interference from powers far superior to his can hinder his Sensing, as seen when Eriol Hiiragizawa ( 1/2 of the reincarnation of Clow Reed) could effectively conceal his exact whereabouts and identity from both Keroberos and Yue until he personally revealed who he really was.

Basic Plushy Powers: While in his plushy form, Keroberos is still able to fly, but cannot use any of his magical abilities aside from his (weakened) abilities of Sensing, spreading tiny fireballs (as seen at the end of episode 35) and breathing fire (as seen in episode 45 when fighting the Earthy).

Clow Cards: In his true form, he has jurisdiction over all things fire and earth, the elements which draw their power from him.

Energy Barriers: Keroberos is able to summon protective energy barriers to protect himself and others from both physical and magical attacks.

Fire Breath: As fire is one of the elements under his control, Keroberos is able to shoot balls of fire from his mouth.

Cards

Half of the deck are under his protection, and these are the only cards that can effectively be used against Yue. The Elements he controls are The Firey (his aggressive element) and The Earthy (the slightly more passive Element under his jurisdiction). Here is a complete list (please note it is said The Light is the first card under him but the rest of the order is unknown):

  • The Light
  • The Firey
  • The Earthy
  • The Glow
  • The Return
  • The Big
  • The Little
  • The Create
  • The Sweet
  • The Power
  • The Thunder
  • The Fight
  • The Shadow
  • The Sword
  • The Arrow
  • The Shot
  • The Through
  • The Twin
  • The Maze
  • The Flower
  • The Shield
  • The Sand
  • The Libra
  • The Lock
  • The Loop
  • The Mirror

Gallery

Cerberus/Image Gallery

Appearances in Other Media

Leave it to Kero-chan

In the first season of the anime, Keroberos has the additional function of being a sort of viewer's guide to the fictional world in Cardcaptor Sakura in a series of short omake called "Leave It to Kero-chan!". Unlike most omake, these were aired alongside the series, always following the ending credits and before the next-episode preview. In each segment, he would discuss costumes, props, and other characters, often in ways that are ironic (such as a mention of Tomoyo's ability to obtain shots for her videos that are utterly impossible with a hand-held camera) and which break the fourth wall. At first the segment ended with a Part called Kero's Check!, but this was later dropped. Eventually, the whole "Leave it to Kero-chan" segment was stopped altogether, leaving Kero devastated.

Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle

Cerberus yue clow tsubasa

Cerberus and Yue with Clow, flashback from Tsubasa:Reservoir Chronicle

Kero tsubasa

Cerberus as he appears in Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle. As a Guardian God from Kero-chan Country and the blimp from Piffle World, modeled after him

Kero spinel tsubasa

Cats in Outo Country, resembling Cerberus and Spinel Sun

Keroberos appears in the anime version of Clamp's latest series, Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle, in the episode "Kero-chan and Mokona" in his false form. Here, he retains most of his characteristics from Cardcaptor Sakura, but he is able to create small lightning bolts. Keroberos aids Mokona in retrieving the feather after the rest of the group are unable to because they mysteriously shrunk in size. He also makes cameos in Piffle World; there was a blimp modeled after him, in Ōto Country, where one of the cats which appears briefly also resembles Cerberus, while the other resembles Spinel, and in episode 50, the anime series finale, when Sakura remember telling her brother that she was going on a travel, she was taking a yellow plushie toy (which greatly resembled Kero-chan's fake form, though wingless) with her. Finally, in the final Clow arc, Cerberus himself in his real form, along with Yue, make a very small, shadowy cameo, being mentioned by Yuuko as Clow's beloved people, who he had to abandon.

CLAMP in Wonderland 2

Cerberus, along with Spinel, make a brief appearence in the non-canonical CLAMP video homage called CLAMP in Wonderland, there, they both fight Iyogori (from Kobato.), while flying, first Cerberus in his real form, and then Spinel. Their fire cause Kobato's Umbrella to burn and then she falls, as they look down, embarrassed.

Trivia

  • Apparently, Kero spent 30 years asleep in the Clow Card Book before Sakura released him.
  • In the anime, due to Kero not having a place to stay since being released from the Clow Book, Sakura eventually made him a small little "home" of his complete with a bed of his own in her bottom desk drawer where he happily lives to this day. Interestingly, the drawer where Kero "lives" is just below the drawer where Sakura keeps the Clow Card Book but in the manga, no place is shown as it's been shown that he sleeps in Sakura's bed.

References


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