Animal Crossing: New Horizons features several characters with the superhero motif, but Kid Cat and Agent S share a relationship beyond that.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons is full of unique Villagers from all the games in the Animal Crossing series. While some Villagers may be more popular than others, each has their own personality and story to enjoy. One particular set of Villagers in Animal Crossing have dedicated themselves to protecting their Island homes from evil, and are known as the Superhero Villagers. While there are currently only five of them in Animal Crossing: New Horizons, two particular members of their group seem to have a unique relationship: Kid Cat and Agent S.
There has been a perpetuating theory that Agent S is the sidekick of Kid Cat based on dialogue shared in-game, and the more specific details of Agent S’ character. Agent S is a squirrel with a matching bike helmet and racing uniform worn by all the superhero Villagers in Animal Crossing. Bearing the #2 on her chest, it appears that Agent S’ number mirrors her role in the team. Her Japanese name is ‘Ni Go’, which translates roughly into ‘number two’. This emphasis on being a step below Kid Cat (who bears the #1 insignia on his outfit), suggests a hero and sidekick relationship.
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One of the first pieces of evidence supporting Agent S’ sidekick role is her name. The ‘S’ could stand for Squirrel, which is her species, or it could stand for sidekick. There aren’t many Villagers in Animal Crossing that blatantly acknowledge their species, just as no one seems to acknowledge that Animal Crossing player characters are the only ones on the island that aren’t animals. Kid Cat seems to make use of his species in his name, but neither Big Top (an elephant) nor Rocket (a gorilla) seems to use theirs. Agent S’ use of the letter ‘S’ could mean sidekick, or it could be her attempt to model her own superhero identity after Kid Cat. Whatever the reason, this would still imply some shared identity or need for approval between the two.
Did Animal Crossing’s Hero or Sidekick Come First?
There are only four superhero villagers on Kid Cat’s team in Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Going by Animal Crossing’s numbered database of Villagers, Kid Cat came first with the second being Agent S. The team is modeled after Super Sentai, a Japanese show whose premise was adopted into Western Culture through the creation of the Power Rangers. Kid Cat, like the leading character in the shows, is in charge of the team, as implied with the #1 on his chest and the matching red racing suit. Meanwhile, Agent S’ #2 and dominant blue getup has a connotation of being the right-hand man (or squirrel) to the leader. In both shows, the second-in-command is often vying for the approval of the leader, mirroring the traditional hero-sidekick motif in comics and entertainment media. This same relationship is likely mirrored with Agent S and Kid Cat.
The final piece of evidence that Agent S might be Kid Cat’s sidekick is that her default catchphrase is “sidekick”. If there is anything to be learned about sidekicks throughout superhero culture, it’s that sidekicks are eager to come into their hero roles. By calling everyone around her a sidekick, Agent S succeeds in establishing her hero status (at least in her mind). While players can change the catchphrases of Villagers, the default catchphrases often give away more about the canon personalities of the Animal Crossing characters.
While the uniforms shared between Animal Crossing’s superheroes imply that they all know one another and work with one another, Kid Cat and Agent S seem to have a more partnered relationship. Agent S’ name, catchphrase, and inspiration all point to signs of her acting as Kid Cat’s sidekick to fight the nonexistent evil of Animal Crossing. Agent S’ Peppy personality in New Horizons speaks to a deeper need of approval from Kid Cat, and despite her forgetful nature, she seems to be quite a competent candidate for filling his shoes.
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