I noticed a thing: Hao and Cats.
So Hao doesn’t have his reishi ability any more as that stemmed from his loneliness, but I can’t shrug off the idea that even after his reunion with Asanoha, and everything else, he’s still lonely. Like, these images aren’t in any particular order, but they’re prime examples of Hao being surrounded by cats, and being referred to as “lonely”. After he’s become the Shaman King, Hao is often depicted as being surrounded by cats (pictured above) when he visits people in the physical world. Not to mention, he has to bring up that he’s not “lonely nor bored” every time he appears, or others mention that he must be lonely being surrounded by cats… and then there’s chapter 290 from Shaman King which is titled “Cats get attached to lonely people”.
It’s clear that Hao has an affinity with cats ever since he befriended/saved Matamune (and maybe pre-Matamune too). But then…
… Matamune doesn’t show up in the final battle. The closest we get is from Shaman King, chapter 300, page 31, Hao smiles at a cat that resembles Matamune (see the only coloured picture above). So I guess, while Hao might not be lonely any more, he still really misses Matamune, his first friend. I suppose the ending to chapter 300 could be a reunion between the two of sorts (who knows, that cat might very well be Matamune reincarnated), but it’s still a pretty loose ended ending.
I don’t know, these are just some thoughts I’ve had about Hao and Matamune/cats. I kind of want Hao’s past expanded on since there’s so much of it (he’s technically 1000 years old, seriously, there’s so much to work with), and especially his relationship with Matamune to be explored more, but Shaman King Flowers is about Hana after all, so I guess not. :T
TL;DR I think Hao is lonely no matter what he says or his inability to use his reishi, and that a proper reunion with Matamune will fix everything. Also, Takei should make a biography of Hao’s life. That would be great.
Shaman King Kang Zeng Bang
Shaman King Remix Track:
Shaman King Flowers
Translations by: Mankin Trad