The shonen-centric Hunter x Hunter universe is crawling with terrifying monsters and highly-skilled hunters, but with the dark also comes the light. No character demonstrates this juxtaposition better than Alluka Zoldyck, Killua’s younger sister. Possessed by the direful Dark Continent creature Nanika, Alluka bears incredible power, but she’s simultaneously a tender soul with a sweet spirit.
Although protagonists Gon and Killua are only 12-years-old, they manage to earn their hunter’s license and take on extremely dangerous missions offering glorious rewards. The 2011 Hunter X Hunter anime exploring their hunting saga is over 100 episodes long, and Alluka only appears in the last arc: Hunter Chairman Election. Nevertheless, her kind personality and fascinating role in the series shines brightly. Here’s why the charming young Zoldyck is Hunter X Hunter’s Best Girl.
Alluka Is Wonderful Trans Girl Representation
While it's not overtly stated that Alluka is specifically transgender, it's strongly implied, especially considering that Killua, her most trusted ally and beloved brother, uses "she/her" pronouns around her. Other members of the Zoldyck family who have misplaced disdain for her, however, still refer to Alluka as “brother.” Always donning a feminine hairstyle and dress, her gender identity seems quite transparent.
Shonen anime don’t always nicely portray trans girl characters, sometimes overly sexualizing or disrespecting them, but Hunter X Hunter’s depiction of Alluka is much more honorable. While her identity is not recognized by many family members, Killua fully accepts her, even defecting from his family to remove her from the toxic Zoldyck environment. Alluka’s character is also wholly her own, with an adorable disposition and powerful abilities making her entirely unique.
The Enchanting Dynamic Between Alluka & Nanika
A part of why Alluka plays such an integral role in Hunter X Hunter's final arc is her tremendous power and compelling connection to Nanika, whose name also means “something.” Alluka is Nanika’s “host,” meaning the creature lives inside her and only comes out under certain conditions. Nanika can grant any wish imaginable -- but only after the wisher completes three requests. Despite the miraculous power, it comes at a cost: the grander the wish, the more severe her next requests are, and failure to complete them results in the violent death of the wisher and the one they love most.
While some (her family) see this power as volatile and abhorrent, it can be reigned in if handled with care. This is demonstrated by Killua, who understands her more than anyone else. Because he has connected with her so compassionately, Nanika has special rules allowing him to make commands that only apply to him.
If anything, the danger that Nanika poses makes Alluka more delicate and complicated. In fact, it’s been noted that her duality could loosely serve as a kind of metaphor for how trans individuals have been demonized. However, the way Alluka handles her connection to Nanika demonstrates courage and decisiveness, though she’s upset when Killua asks Nanika to leave forever.
Alluka Has a Kind and Gentle Soul
Alluka Zoldyck may be possessed by the scary Dark Continent creature Nanika, but she's actually a total sweetheart. Though many of the Zoldycks call her soulless and uncontrollable, her true nature comes out when Killua, with whom she's joyous and lovely to the core, is around. Unlike the rest of her family, Alluka is not a trained assassin or nen-user — she’s an ordinary and innocent little girl with a gentle and playful heart.
Always surrounded by dolls and toys, Alluka is one of the few characters in Hunter x Hunter who acts her age (only 11 years old when she’s first introduced). She loves playing childish games like Shiritori and at one point, as she pretends to kill Killua with a finger gun, he lovingly plays along. She’s also naturally affectionate and caring toward others if she’s given a chance – even scolding Killua when he’s being mean to Gon and assuring him they can schedule a “playdate” later.
Alluka's Character Design Is Adorable
The many characters in Hunter X Hunter have diverse and distinctive designs, but Alluka’s look is arguably the cutest and most unique of them all. Though she has blue eyes like Killua and her father, she really stands out with her feminine and fashionable style.
Alluka has long black hair decorated with adorable hair bobbles with cartoon faces that frame her face. The smiling and frowning faces also match the ones on the headband she wears. Her pink and green dress resembles miko attire, the traditional clothes of a Japanese shrine maiden. While the garb could just serve as her aesthetic, it could also reflect her purity or the divine spirit possession within her.
Even when Nanika emerges, the creepy white and black face replacing Alluka’s, it’s often drawn in a cartoony style with scribbly eyes and tears that express emotion when Killua is around. Her clothes reflect her inner duality, which only adds to her charm.
Alluka Loves Her Brother Killua Unconditionally
At one point in Hunter x Hunter, Killua asks Alluka if she’d be sad if he were the only one to show love for her, and in response she gives a big sappy smile and expresses her overwhelming joy, saying “I’m so happy, I can’t stop smiling.” Eager to spend time with him whenever she gets the chance, she easily forgives Killua when he leaves her with his family for years without visiting.
The only time Alluka has even been upset with him is when he asked her codependent spirit Nanika to never come out again, and even then Nanika obeys his command and accepts his apology. Alluka’s love for Killua runs so deep that even her Dark Continent creature companion Nanika loves him as an older brother.