Here's Why Kimiko Can't Talk In The Boys

By Richard Nebens Posted:
The Boys, Kimiko

The Boys features Karen Fukuhara as Kimiko, who makes her way from Seasons 1-4 without talking.

A veteran of action films like Suicide Squad and Bullet Train, Fukuhara first joined The Boys in Season 1 as "The Female" found in a cage amongst a trail of blood and destruction.

She becomes a key part of the team as its first powered member before Erin Moriarty's Starlight joins.

Why Can't The Boys' Kimiko Talk?

Karen Fukuhara as Kimiko in The Boys Season 4
Amazon Studios

Warning - The rest of this article contains minor spoilers for The Boys Season 4.

Those familiar with The Boys know Karen Fukuhara's Kimiko, specifically that she does not talk for most of her time on screen.

The character is selectively mute, meaning her body is capable of speech. However, trauma from her past prevents her from talking.

When Kimiko was a child, her parents were killed by a terrorist organization called the Shining Light Liberation Army, who abducted her and her brother, Kenji, from their home in Japan. Seeing her parents gunned down left Kimiko mute, as was seen in Season 2, Episode 3.

To survive day-to-day, Kimiko and Kenji developed their unique sign language to communicate with each other.

After joining the team, she uses sign language to communicate with The Boys, although her teammates are often frustrated by not being able to talk to her. Frenchie supports her more than anybody, as the two regularly sign with one another throughout all four seasons.

In Season 4, Episode 2, Kimiko is also seen going to therapy, hoping to regain her ability to speak. This session goes horribly, as Kimiko angrily texts that she is not doing well with her speech. She even breaks her chair when asked to discuss her family history as a reason for her being mute.

The only time fans hear Kimiko speak is when she sings "I Got Rhythm" in Season 3, Episode 5. However, this is only in her imagination as she dances with Frenchie inside her mind.

Showrunner Eric Kripke previously admitted wanting Kimiko to have more voice in an interview with Digital Spy. He was conscious of "the stereotype of a quiet Asian woman," which he wanted to avoid even though Kimiko "can't speak verbally:"

"One of the things that I wished I could have done better in Season 1 was to give Kimiko more of a voice. I think we stumbled inadvertently into a little bit of a trap. There's the stereotype of a quiet Asian woman, and I was very conscious of not wanting to do that. We really have to make sure that that character has a very strong voice and a very strong point of view. And just because she can't speak verbally, it doesn't mean that she can't speak. And that she has opinions, and she's a real person."

Additionally, while not confirming why Kimiko does not talk, Fukuhara teased that the answer will soon be revealed. Speaking with WIRED alongside Claudia Doumit (Victoria Neuman) and Erin Moriarty (Starlight), Fukuhara tackled why Kimiko does not speak in a segment about the most Googled questions for The Boys.

The actress admitted that she "cannot answer that question...because it is in Season 4," teasing a reveal in later episodes.

Will Kimiko Talk in The Boys Season 4?

Having Kimiko go to therapy for her speech issues opens the door to her starting to talk again later in Season 4, even though she has not done so over the first three seasons.

Particularly after the moment in Season 3 when she sang in her own head, fans are anxious to see whether that could translate into something else for future episodes.

With five episodes remaining in Season 4, she'll likely try to build up her speaking abilities with Frenchie as their relationship evolves.

A moment as big as Kimiko talking for the first time outside her head would likely be something saved for an end-of-season hero moment. For now, viewers will wait to see how her therapy sessions go and how her upcoming battles alongside The Boys affect her mentally.

The first three episodes of The Boys Season 4 are now streaming on Amazon Prime Video.

Read more about The Boys below:

Who Is Cameron Crovetti? 5 Things to Know About The Boys' Ryan Actor - Wiki Bio Details

The Boys Season 4's New Black Noir: Who He Is, Explained

The Boys Season 4 Release Date Breaks a Frustrating Series Record

- In This Article: The Boys (Season 4)
Release Date
June 13, 2024
Anthony Starr
Erin Moriarty
Jack Quaid
Karl Urban
- About The Author: Richard Nebens
Richard Nebens joined The Direct in March 2020, now serving as the site's Senior Writer and also working as an assistant editor and content creator. He started his journalism career as a hobby in 2019 and is passionate about sharing news and stories from the entertainment industry, especially comic book movies, comedy, and sci-fi. Richard looks to expand his knowledge about movies and TV every day, and he is eager to stay locked into the latest releases and breaking news at every opportunity.