“Unbreakable Ungulate”- Louis Character Analysis (Beastars)

Welcome, one and all! If you’ve seen any of Beastars, you will know that Louis the deer is quite fascinating. That’s why today’s post is a detailed analysis of this character. We’ll start with a little information about Louis’ life and background, followed by a two-part personality analysis. Part one covers the MBTI type, while part two explains the personality in more general terms. After that, we explore the character journey of Louis as seen so far (seasons one and two of Beastars). I may also include some miscellaneous notes at the end. Without further ado, let’s begin.


Background

Louis’ past is perhaps the best example of the fact that the Beastars world is quite dark in ways not immediately obvious to new viewers. In this world, herbivore meat often ends up on the dark market, from those who sold their lives voluntarily to pay off their family’s debts, from those coerced or killed in underground business, or from life-long slaves to the system. Louis was presumably an abandoned child or one that was illegally sold; he knew nothing of his family or the world except the cage in which he spent his youngest years. When his time came, he would be food for the right buyer. In the meantime, he was treated as property and branded with a product number (four) on his foot.

Louis only got out of that horrible place because he was adopted by a rich businessman– a deer like himself– with no biological heir. But first, Louis was put through a terrible test. They gave him a knife and put him in a room full of lion mafia members with no qualms about eating meat. As they leered at him and looked ready to devour him, Louis made his choice. He raised the knife to his throat, and would have killed himself if the businessman from before didn’t intervene and end the test. He afterward adopted Louis with no further questions. What this shows is that even as a very small child, Louis had his pride. Rather than letting greedy carnivores torment and eat him alive, he would put a quick end to himself by his own hand.

The details of Louis’ upbringing are unknown, but he seemed to enjoy a well-off life, as much as someone can when traumatized like that. Season 2 tells us that Louis only saw his “father” once a month when they would eat a fancy dinner together. Fast-forward to high school, and Louis was attending Cherrytown Academy, a place where carnivore and herbivore students were not segregated as was common practice. In addition to being popular, admired, and good with grades, Louis was the king of the drama club. He tried to get to know everyone there as a good leader should, and that’s how he met Legoshi, Bill, Tem, and others.

Louis’ dream was to become the next Beastar. After Tem’s murder at the hands of a mysterious devourer, Louis swore to find the one responsible and put things back to rights at Cherrytown. This is where Beastars actually begins. Understanding this background information about Louis will be important later on.


MBTI Type: ENTJ

At first glance, so to speak, it might be difficult to tell if Louis is introverted or extroverted. But the latter is more likely, and here are some reasons why. Firstly, Louis is comfortable in the spotlight (literally and figuratively) where he is the charismatic center of attention. This is much more common for extroverts than introverts. Although Louis has issues with intimacy and trust, his people skills are good, and he knows the right attitude to take to alleviate tension depending on the social setting. Good people skills are also more common (though not exclusive to) extroverted individuals. Another sign of an extrovert is a natural tendency to be a leader. This trait is especially clear in the ambitious, dominant Louis. So it’s safe to say he’s extroverted.

Louis is most likely an intuitive type, though he does show sensing tendencies sometimes (less frequently). Where sensing types are practical, intuitive types are inventive. The sensing type is a very physical existence, having excellent hands-on skills and craving sensory experiences. In contrast, an intuitive individual is more typically “book-smart” or intellectual, imaginative, and interested in concepts. Louis possesses a sharp mind and thinks outside the box. He’s much more interested in his ambitions than in secure living. If this doesn’t seem like enough evidence for Louis being intuitive, don’t worry. It will become clearer when we later compare ENTJs with ESTJs. For now, let’s go to the next preference.

The third dimension of the MBTI is feeling vs. thinking, and for this category the answer is crystal clear. Louis is definitely a thinking type. In fact, this is probably his most pronounced trait. Thinkers are, on the one hand, objective and logical truth-seekers. The downsides tend to include being less tactful, missing the human element or individual nuances of a situation, and sometimes being or appearing less caring or empathetic. This definitely speaks to the character of Louis. He is an impersonal analyzer, and while he may usually be logically correct, he stuffs down his own feelings and minimizes the feelings of others.

The fourth preference of prospecting vs. judging is as clear as the third. Louis is a judging type. Each preference has its own strengths and weaknesses. Generally, prospectors are better at living on the fly, being more relaxed, and dealing well with problems as they arise. Judgers, meanwhile, are best with having time to think of the most logical solution; they are thorough, organized, and goal-oriented. Louis most certainly fits the latter description. He’s ambitious, intense, and assiduous, almost to a fault.

So far we can gather that Louis is probably an ENTJ. However, there is also the possibility of ESTJ. To be sure, we’ll take a look at the cognitive functions model of the MBTI. The four main functions of the ENTJ are Te, Ni, Se, Fi. For the ESTJ, the functions are Te, Si, Ne, Fi. Both types have a primary function of extroverted thinking, which is consistent with what we already know about Louis. Again, the answer depends on whether Louis uses sensing (Si) or intuition (Ni). So which is it?

To get a better idea, remember the bigger picture: the overall personality profiles of the ESTJ and ENTJ. They have much in common. Both types are sometimes called commanders or executives, since they are excellent (if a little aggressive) leaders. They are competent, strong-willed, and responsible. The most notable differences between them, in my mind anyway, is as follows: the ESTJ is practical and traditional, while the ENTJ is inventive and original. An ENTJ will do anything to achieve their desired results, even if breaks tradition or wreaks havoc on the established order. An ESTJ, on the other hand, needs to follow a stern honor code and keep everything in order.

Now look at Louis’ behavior throughout the two seasons of Beastars we have so far. Even when it might cause problems to stay quiet, Louis did not tell anyone about his injury, but stayed determined to be the star of the play. It was an understandable but impractical choice. Remember when he went after the boss of the Shishigumi? That was also a choice suggesting intuition over sensing. In season two, Louis became the new boss, and did anything necessary to prove himself, including trying to eat meat like a carnivore. Now that’s taboo. That breaks every sort of code. It’s the last strong piece of evidence we need. Louis is an ENTJ.


Personality In General Terms

Louis’ first appearance in Beastars episode one is not especially showy, but it still serves as the perfect introduction to the character. As he brings flowers to the spot where Tem was killed, he is followed by a small crowd of animals gazing at him in admiration. The deer’s demeanor is calm and solemn, but intense. He kneels and closes his eyes to pay respect to the fallen friend, and his posture and expression are perfect. As Legoshi watches this, he thinks to himself that Louis must be putting thought into every little thing he does, from his voice to his movements.

It takes a lot to catch Louis off guard. His need to manage appearances and adjust himself to the perfect social mask is but one example of Louis’ perfectionism. He tends to expect flawlessness too much, both from himself and others. In this section, we’ll be exploring different aspects of Louis’ personality, including his sense of justice, his ambitious nature, and to start with, his perfectionism.

When it comes to expecting things of others, there is some important nuance. While Louis expects perfection of himself in everything, he has somewhat lower standards for others. He still expects competence, but not a complete lack of mistakes. The best example is in episodes 4 and 5, when Bill the tiger brought a small vial of rabbit blood with him for “doping” himself into a better performance. Legoshi fought Bill in front of everyone on the stage. Later, Louis chastises them both harshly for spilling blood in a school club and endangering the success of the play. However, he also returns the blood vial to Bill and says, “Unlike Legoshi, I never expected you to uphold that kind of morals.” I think it’s his way of being realistic and forgiving.

Another example occurs in the first episode, when one of the actors (Zoe the goat) has not been practicing his lines. Louis harshly insults him and even acts threatening. However, he also arranges for a secret practice session in the auditorium after hours, just for the sake of helping Zoe catch up. So it seems Louis can be quite graceful– at least when it comes to others at key points. With himself, it’s a different story. There is absolutely no room for failure, and he must not show any weakness. That’s why, for example, Louis is able to perform on the first day of the play despite having a fractured leg. He worked himself so hard that, as the curtain fell, he passed out from the pain and exhaustion.

In a flashback in Beastars’ first season, we see the moment where Haru met Louis for the first time. His antlers had been shed, as will happen to male deer once a year. But since they fell off sooner than anticipated, Louis was stuck at a school; there was no way of leaving without being seen in that antlerless state. He refused to allow this since it would suggest weakness and a drop in status in his mind. Initially, Louis appealed to Haru with his status as the beloved school idol, but to his surprise, Haru had never heard of him and really didn’t care.

So after that, Louis tried to pay Haru to let him camp out in the garden club shed for a few days until his new antlers started to grow. Haru being Haru was not interested in money, but allowed the deer to stay for other reasons. She was sure to tell him, however, that she thought he had way too much ego for assuming everyone at school would know who he was and be eager to serve him. It was also rude of him to assume he could buy help, when Haru was willing to discuss things as new friends.

This example shows something important. It’s hard to discuss Louis’ perfectionism without simultaneously discussing his pride and stubbornness. Those traits are all intertwined, and they show themselves in almost everything Louis says and does. The deer has quite a high opinion of himself. This is probably in part because he’s the son of a rich corporation owner, and is beloved and idolized by the students of Cherryton. In other words, he is used to being number one. This pride reinforces Louis’ unrealistic desire for spotless excellence.

Stubbornness also comes into play here. An immense amount of pressure is on Louis– thanks to his father, the Beastar system, and his own grandiose dreams– but he will not accept help in most cases. He dislikes anything that resembles pity, and is constantly defensive. When Louis has decided to do something or take a certain path, it takes some kind of enormous upheaval to ever change it. The deer has strong convictions and huge dreams which he can only hope to uphold by sheer obstinance against adversity or obstacles.

That brings us to another important part of Louis’ personality: his ambitious nature. No other Beastars character is Louis’ equal in this regard– not even Juno, in my opinion. That’s because this deer wants to seriously change the world for everyone, both herbivore and carnivore. How exactly he planned to do this isn’t clear, but becoming the next Beastar was the first step. Now certainly, there is an element here of Louis desiring power. He is a born leader and he wants a lifestyle suited for such a personality. His father also reinforced in him the idea that he was special and would be an important figure in the world. However, Louis is unselfish for the most part in his intentions. He truly wants to change the world in a positive way due to his sense of justice, which is the next point to mention.

Louis may not be obviously kind, putting strict boundaries on sentimentality, but his personal morality is mighty nonetheless. He has a strong sense of justice and will reward it where he sees it. After Legoshi’s righteous anger led him to attack Bill on stage, Louis verbally berates both carnivores for fighting. However, he also subtly comforted Legoshi on stage, saying that he was in the right for his moral outrage. During the last few episodes of season one, we saw that Louis was disgusted by the lion mayor’s dirty tactics and resignation to the current corrupt reality. He seems to feel disgusted by meat-eating and the dark market in general.

Even at a very young age, Louis’ moral nature was obvious. In fact, that’s why the deer corporation owner chose to adopt him. Back when Louis was in captivity in the dark market, he had cell-mates. He gradually came to understand that they never came back once taken away. At the time when the corporation owner came, he initially pointed to Louis’ last cell-mate. But Louis started yelling and fighting the guard, trying to save his friend. The rich deer man saw this brave show, became fascinated, and chose Louis instead. This is just a small detail in the life of Louis, but it’s important. He has always been the kind of person to protect others.

(Louis also saved this fine lady from being eaten by a tiger)

At one point in the show, when Louis is paying respects to Tem, we hear his thoughts about how he wants to change the world. It would be easy for someone like Louis to try changing the world in a way that was unfair and hateful to carnivores, but Louis harbors no such intentions. He wants to make the world a better place for everyone, not just herbivores. When he is forced to be the Shishigumi leader, this unusual deer somehow turned it into a situation where he could try to help others and make things better. He helped make the Shishigumi less savage and more like a dark market police force, almost. And while he makes it clear that he doesn’t approve of eating meat, Louis tries to understand things from the perspective of the lions, and mostly succeeds. Even in that terrible position, Louis remained a deeply moral individual who is always striving for improvement.

Although Louis is quite admirable in many ways, he is certainly not without faults and insecurities. I’ll provide examples of both. To start with, being too perfectionistic is kind of a character flaw. We did already cover some of that though. The main flaws we haven’t really discussed are Louis’ antagonistic mannerisms and bossiness. He isn’t quite a bully, but he’s an intense, severe deer, and not overly concerned with showing kindness. As I mentioned earlier, Louis was extremely insulting toward Zoe the goat for not practicing his lines. In the same episode, Louis also treated Kai with contempt and disdain when he kicked him off the main acting team. Additionally, Louis often lets his frustration toward Legoshi show in his actions and words. Even when he’s in a good mood, he treats the wolf in a rather demeaning way.

Louis certainly has a compassionate side, and this is clear especially in his interactions with Haru as a lover. He can be so gentle and calm. It’s the same when he talks to Juno in season two. However, by and large, Louis isn’t a tactful or considerate person with his words. Part of this is a defense mechanism, which is related to his insecurities. Past trauma is one reason for Louis’ behavior. He went through hell as a small child, and even after being liberated from that, he did not have an open, loving family to get support from. While he has many acquaintances, it seems like Louis has very few friends he could actually trust to support him in a time of emotional turmoil. There is also constant pressure on him to perform. So it’s hardly any wonder that this deer defaults to putting others down and acting superior. That’s his way of feeling strong and secure.

(Louis’ trauma)

Besides trauma and a difficult life, there’s one other key thing to mention about Louis’ insecurities. He hates his own weakness intensely. Consequently, he is envious of powerful carnivores. Legoshi in particular gets under Louis’ skin because he has so much strength but isn’t proud of it. Now, the kind of strength that Louis wants isn’t simply the physical power– though I’m sure he would like that, too. (Who wouldn’t?) Rather, Louis wants the natural confidence and imposing presence seen in healthy large carnivores like Bill the tiger. What he doesn’t realize is that he’s already plenty strong. Mentally, he’s absolutely incredible. Louis might acknowledge his strength on some level, but to him, it’s just never enough. He always feels weak in his own mind, which unfortunately goes back to his childhood trauma.

By now, you should have a pretty good mental picture of Louis’ personality. We’ve been over several of his most notable character traits, including some flaws. For the final section of this analysis, we will explore Louis’ character journey across two anime seasons from a psychological perspective. What growth did he undergo? What did he learn? Has he changed for the better or not? All of that will be discussed.


Character Journey

Louis goes through a great deal of struggle and development over the two seasons of Beastars. The core of his character arc is twofold: he must begin the process of moving on from his trauma, and he must come to understand true friendship and trust. Initially, the Louis we see in early season one is in a state of constant emotional turmoil, but is well on his way toward his long-term goals. By the end of the season, things have changed drastically. He ends up diving straight into the darkness and leaving his old life behind. What follows in season two is a time of confusion and misguided resignation. In the end, however, Louis snaps out of it and decides to return to the right world. That’s also when he meets up with Legoshi and is able to fully trust the wolf with his life. Let’s look at these things in more detail.

Those terrible early childhood experiences traumatized Louis. He still has nightmares about it as a young adult. One thing that happened to him was his branding. His foot was branded with his product number, four. The presence of the brand on his foot seems to bother Louis a lot. Although Louis holds no unreasonable hatred toward carnivores, he does wish to change the world in a way that will benefit herbivores, who are still eaten in the dark market. That’s why Louis is bound and determined to become the next Beastar. His dreams are big and hopes are high even when he is dealing with ongoing consequences of trauma.

When Louis was faced with the lion mayor late in season 1, his large-scale aspirations began to crumble. For context, Louis confronted the mayor to ask him to lend his help in saving the kidnapped Haru. Not only did the mayor refuse this request, he also tried playing dirty to keep Louis quiet about the event. Since he knew about Louis’ past, he offered to cover it up completely in exchange for the deer’s discretion; in other words, the lion indirectly threatened to make a scandal out of Louis’ dark past.

At first, Louis hesitated to act on his feelings, trying to be hyper-logical as usual. But in the end, he went to risk his life to help save Haru. By leaving the school that rainy evening, killing the Shishigumi boss, and saving his friends, Louis turned his back on the world. He fully expected to be killed by the rest of the lions that night. He didn’t want to die, but he couldn’t live with himself if he didn’t try to rescue the girl he loved, as well as his kouhai Legoshi. This task was even more important to him than his big dreams of becoming the Beastar.

To Louis’ surprise, the Shishigumi refused to eat him, instead wanting to use him for their own purposes in furthering the reputation of the group. Louis repeated the same decision from his childhood. He would kill himself rather than give the carnivores satisfaction. Unfortunately, his shot missed, and he had to live on. After he woke up and was being forced to eat meat, Louis decided suicide wasn’t the answer. He still wanted to live. And that’s also when he began to think he might be able to help the underground world with a position like Shishigumi boss. During his time as the boss, Louis was only half resigned to his fate of being used by carnivores. He also intended to use them, and adjust to life in the underground with a darker, more realistic worldview compared to his former self.

Louis was the type of person who would be strong and survive even something as tough as being a forced member of a carnivore-run mafia group. But that didn’t mean it was good for him. Juno and Legoshi both pointed out that this life would eventually destroy or corrupt Louis’ mind and heart. Louis ignored them. The thing that finally made him snap out of it was his realization that he loved carnivores, including Legoshi and the Shishigumi members (especially Ibuki). Louis explained that he needed to leave to save Legoshi, and Ibuki took him for an eventful drive. It ended up with a dead Ibuki, and his younger lion subordinate telling Louis to leave the dark market forever. Louis wasted no time going to see Legoshi and his fight with Riz.

It’s important that we understand Louis’ thoughts on carnivores and his thoughts about his identity as a herbivore. For one thing, Louis envies the strength of carnivores. He feels disadvantaged and even helpless with his identity as a herbivore. Louis has great respect toward carnivores like Bill who are confident in their strength and proud to be who they are. Legoshi can be difficult for Louis to deal with because he is ashamed of his strength. You would think someone with trauma like Louis would hate carnivores, but really, he loves them. There is a certain beauty he sees in their strength and their struggles to control themselves. It takes Louis all of seasons 1 and 2 to realize that he truly loves carnivores. But once he does realize, it’s a huge and important revelation to him. It helps him come to terms with himself and to find something beautiful in that dark world.

I said that dealing with Legoshi can be difficult for Louis, but there’s also no denying the importance of Legoshi to Louis. As the loyal friend and righteous carnivore, Legoshi is essential. Without his continued friendship and the insights it offers, Louis would not be the same, nor be able to recognize his love for carnivores. Additionally, Louis has never disagreed with Legoshi’s morals at their core. In season one episode 4, he tells Legoshi that his path is just. And look how furious Louis was when he temporarily thought that Legoshi was eating meat in the dark market in season two. He might not want to admit it, but Louis admires Legoshi on some level, and Legoshi’s necessity in his character journey is inarguable.

The sudden loss of Ibuki seems to have prompted Louis to treasure whoever is left. He hurried to the scene where Legoshi was fighting Riz, and it was there he had his dramatic breakdown. This emotional breakdown was extremely important because it showed that Louis can be vulnerable in front of Legoshi. It’s the first time in his memory that he has ever shed tears and cried. After everything that had been happening, and so much pent-up pressure, anyone would start crying. Plus, Louis didn’t want to lose Legoshi.

The young deer then did something that speaks volumes about his character. Seeing that Legoshi was losing the fight and would surely die soon, Louis offered his own flesh to strengthen the wolf. It took a little bit to convince Legoshi, but the act was done. Louis’ foot and lower leg were eaten. This shows that Louis trusted Legoshi to stop before it got life-threatening. Also note that what he offered was the foot that had been branded with his product number, four. By allowing Legoshi to eat that cursed leg, Louis parted with the worst of his childhood trauma. He was glad that it was done by a carnivore. In his mind, Legoshi finally freed him from a long-lasting curse. And the best part was that Legoshi’s strength boost from the meat enabled him to survive the fight. Louis found true friendship and is now beginning to move on from the past.


Closing Thoughts

We’ve taken a close look at Louis from Beastars, from his MBTI type to his intense character journey. This concludes my analysis, at least for now. I do still have a few observations about Louis that I’d like to write about at some point. Mostly, it is about his relationships with other characters. There may also be more content to add if there is a season three of Beastars. For those considerations, I may later add a heading for “Additional Character Information.” However, for now, we’re finished. Thank you so much for reading my work! Take care now.

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