Kondou Isao ( 近藤 勲 Kondō Isao ), also known as Gorilla, is the former commander of the Shinsengumi. When he was not working (which was often the case, and the vice-commander, Hijikata Toushirou ends being the one who ended up covering for Kondou most of the time), he was busy stalking Shinpachi's sister Shimura Tae, earning him the nickname Gorilla-stalker.
Even though the Shinsengumi are fiercely loyal to Kondou, he often has to use the Shinsengumi Vice-Commander Hijikata Toushirou to settle them down (with harsh words or the use of violence) before conducting a speech. During Nobu Nobu's reign when he and Matsudaira were about to be beheaded, he entrusted Gintoki with a message to pass on to his fellow former Shinsengumi police-mates (most of all to Hijikata) to keep moving forward and to not be stupid as Edo still needed someone to protect it, even if the Shinsengumi disbanded.
In his childhood, Kondou attended a temple school that worships a monkey god. He had been a troublesome kid, uprooting neighbors' daikon and stealing them. Because of his behavior, rumors spread that he was raised by monkeys. The chief priest of the monkey god-worshipping temple took Kondou in and let him attend the temple school, even going as far as wanting him to be his successor, so long as Kondou never stole anything again. One day loan sharks took some kids from the temple school as hostage as they wanted the land. Kondou went alone and saved the kids, but when they returned the temple had been burned down. He was forbidden by the chief priest to return to the temple's site, and eventually Kondou left.
Kondou became a member of a dojo run by Kanchou in Bushuu. There, he met Okita Sougo and Hijikata Toushirou, recruiting both of them to join his dojo. Kondou would later take all the members of the dojo with him and move from Bushuu to Edo to establish a career for himself, and create what is now the Shinsengumi.
Kondou is a tall, muscular man with tan skin, spiky brown hair and a goatee. He usually wears a Shinsengumi uniform, though in many situations he is found naked, believing that being naked is a show of big heart. It's a running gag that his normal appearance resembles that of a gorilla, so the other characters "mistake" him for one, and although he often gets angry with them for using that nickname, he sometimes uses the same word to identify himself.
During the events of the Dekoboko Arc he switched genders due to a curse and was seen in his female form. In that form, he has long blonde hair.
Kondou Isao's Gallery
Kondou is kind-hearted and trusting with his subordinates. Most of the members of the Shinsengumi are fiercely loyal to him, as seen in the Mutiny Chapter. Shinsengumi's 1st Division Captain Okita Sougo often remarks that Kondou's nice-guy attitude is also his weakness as he never notices negative points about other people. In the Mutiny Chapter, he was described by Itou Kamotarou as honest and pure (seiren) 清廉 , and unsullied (muku) 無垢. In the same Chapter, Hijikata Toushirou described him as the soul of the Shinsengumi, and the rest of them being the sword that protects him. Hijikata also said that everybody joined the Shinsengumi so that they could be with Kondou, and that as long as he was there, the Shinsengumi would not be finished. He mentioned to Itou that he felt he wasn't suitable to take the role of the commander but as a comrade that couldn't stand seeing the sight of losing friends.
Strength & Abilites
He was trained in his dojou in Bushuu, although not much is known about his skills as a swordman as he is the commander of the Shinsengumi that must always be protected, but he was able to beat (although comically) Toujou Ayumu who was the leader of the 四天王 Shitennou aka 4 Devas, who is the most skilled amongst the 4 Devas, and that the other 3 can't even compare to him.
Kondo wields a katana known as Kotetsu, he nicknamed Kotetsu-chan which he accidentally breaks before paying off the loans. Later purchases Kotetsu Z-II which easily (and purposely) gets broken by Sougo.
Friends & Allies
- Okita Sougo: As a child, Sougo had trouble fitting in, Kondou found him playing by himself joined in and invited him to the Doujou. Sougo was noted to have the most potential in the doujo. In the Mitsuba Chapter, Kondou said to Sougo that if one of them (Toushirou or Sougo) ever strayed, then the other two would punch him back to where he belongs. Kondou explains that having terrible friends in your life isn't a bad thing. When he's about to be executed during Nobu Nobu's reign, Sougo is one of the few remaining former Shinsengumi members to be entrusted to look over Edo, seemingly trying to prevent from what will happen if he'll become like Takasugi Shinsuke.
- Yagyuu Kyuubei: He was her enemy and love rival at first, but in time they became friends. The relationship between them is pretty weird but strong.
- Hijikata Toushirou: Kondou found Toushiro being beaten by lots of samurais and found him to be a very interesting character so he saved him and invited him to his doujo. Before being beheaded along with Matsudaira during Nobu Nobu's reign, he entrusted Toushirou to pass on his footsteps to carry the Shinsengumi's honor to look over the Edo, even though they're not in the Shinsengumi anymore, by requesting Gintoki to message his words to them.
- Matsudaira Katakuriko: Kondou answers to his superior Matsudaira Katakuriko, a high-ranking government officer under direct control of the Bakufu. Matsudaira Katakuriko usually sets up politically arranged marriages for Kondo.
- Matsudaira Kuriko: Kondo said that Kuriko is like a little sister to him. He tried to help in assassinating Shichibei when Katakuriko told him about her new boyfriend.
- Shimura Shinpachi: In the Yagyuu Chapter, Kondou had his mind set on being Shimura Shinpachi's brother-in-law, even going as far as saying Shinpachi was the only one he could entrust the Shinsengumi to, much to Shinpachi's annoyance, answering that he doesn't give a damn about the Shinsengumi. Kondou even added a new Regulation: "Yorozuya is to be hated, but treat Shinpachi well".
- Sakata Gintoki: After his duel with Gintoki, he and Kondo usually got along well, since their desire to watch over Edo until they die is very similar. Although he wrote down a new Regulation that Yorozuya is to be hated, Kondo actually respects Gintoki as Yamazaki stated in episode 32. During Nobu Nobu's reign after Shige Shige got assassinated by one of Nobu Nobu's assassins, and he and Matsudaira were about to be beheaded, he entrusted Gintoki to message the other former Shinsengumi police-mates to carry out the force's honor, to not be stupid as the Edo needs them, even though they're not in the Shinsengumi anymore, this also caused Gintoki to remember how his master, Yoshida Shouyou needed to be beheaded by Gintoki himself in order to save Katsura and Takasugi.
- Katsura Kotarou: When Kondo was the commander of the Shinsengumi, Katsura was his rival because of the latter being a Jouishishi faction leader. Back then they bickered due to the similarity between their online nicknames, and Kondo was always shown chasing after Katsura.They later become friends after Shige Shige's death and during Nobu Nobu's reign.They fight together during the Farewell, Shinsengumi Arc against the enemy forces, and when Sasaki Isaburo arrived on the island ,he tried to shot Kondo but Katsura defends him and gets the shot instead, which worries Kondo.
- Shimura Tae: Kondou once asked Tae whether she would still love her boyfriend if he had a hairy butt. He instantly fell in love with Tae and she became the target of his stalking after she replied that she would love her boyfriend regardless of this fact. Being a persistent stalker of Shimura Tae, Kondou is often seen showing up in strange places around her and is always getting beaten up or threatened by her, as she highly disapproves of his stalking and affection towards her.
- Princess Bubbles: Matsudaira Katakuriko arranged a wedding meeting with Kondo but Kondo was terrified as he saw a large gorilla. After he pooped and kicked the Princess, she fell in love with Kondo. When they're about to consumate in their wedding, Otae interrutpted their wedding ceremony.
- Princess Screw: When Kondo became a screw driver, Matsudaira Katakuriko once again tried to set up a politcal wedding for Kondo.
- Otakai Sayaka: A game character from Love Choris, Kondo chose her and they appealed to be in love but it turned out that Sougo made her into her slave.
When the Shinsengumi first appeared, Hijikata Toushirou replaced Kondo Isao (he was stalking Shimura Tae 志村 妙 at the time) and leads an attack against the Joui Patroits. After learning that a silver haired samurai has beaten Kondo Isao in a duel, the whole Shinsengumi went seeking Sakata Gintoki. In the end Hijitaka lost against Gintoki. Sougo was eager to try his luck against Gintoki, but Kondo suggested that he would beat Sougo in a duel too.
Kondo Isao was targeted by Itou Kamotarou supported by Kiheitai's Kawakami Bansai whose plans was to destroy entire Shinsengumi along with Itou himself.
Otohime opened a snack house. Hijikata and Kondou become its regular costumers and Otohime gave advices to the drunk Kondo for every time he got dumped by a woman. Kondou, drunk, asked to marry with Otohime, but she said that she already has someone, making Hijikata curious. A man came to the shop and called Otohime beautiful, making Kondou laugh.
Kondo claimed that he was bitten by a stray gorilla, which turned him into one. He helped Katsura and Gintoki, who were turned into cats to save Hoichi from the hands (or paws if you prefer) of Planet Catnip's king.
He was one of the many who disguised themselves Santa Claus, however with only intentions to get closer Otae.
Two years later, he retires as a Shinsengumi Commader and marries Otae.
Played the role of Host car.
Kondo and other Shinsengumi members saved Sasaki Tetsunosuke from both Check It Out Gang and Mimawarigumi.
Kondo gets turned inte a female as his apperance changed drastically into a good-looking long-haired blondie.
In Episode 289 Kondou in Shinpachi's body to save Otae.
In Episode 297 He and Hijikata grad a big rock to Kagura's Coffin.
Spirit Guardian Arc
Together with the Yorozuya and he Oniwabanshuu The Shinsegumi gets hired by the Shogun to transport him outside the country and protect him from a attempt assassination. Hijikata and Kondo later in the Ninja village fight together with the Yorozuya to protect the Shogun from countless of Yatos. Later on while fleeing from the Yatos, Hijikata and Kondo lets The Yorozuya together with the Shogun cross a bridge as they both offer themselves to stay behind to hold back the Yatos for them. Kondo and Hijikata then gives their very first and last request to the Yorozuya to protect the Shogun to the very end. Later on after being almost at the brink of death from fightning the enemies Kondo and Hijikata gets saved by reinforcement from the Shinsegumi.
After the Shogun got assassination by one of his own friends Matsudaira and the Shinsegumi gets the blame for being unable for being unable to protect Shige Shige. Nobu Nobu the new shogun sentenced Matsudaira and to be decapitated and disbanded the Shinsengumi. At the same time, Kondou is having a cup of sake with Gintoki As a way to pay the for their work, the two exchanged sake cups together, with the third one dedicated to the deceased Shogun. Discussing about the battles they had gone through, both of them believed that war is meaningless, and nothing was left after it but corpses and sins. Shortly after Kondo gets arrested by The Mimawaragumi as both he and Matsudarai gets sent to the prison island Kokujou to await their punishment.
- Based on Kondo Isami 近藤勇, commander of the Shinsengumi and close friend to Hijikata Toshizo.
- Kondo Isami was known to own a katana named Kotetsu but rumours say its a fake which ironically in Gintama he breaks.
- Gintoki was the first person to give the nickname or call him Gorilla.
- (To Okita Sougo) "We were picked up by the bakufu, if the bakufu didn't exist we would not be here today a warrior always returns the favors with the utmost devotion"
- (To Kiira) "Monkeys we may be, but we're monkey with nerves of steel and hearts of samurai!"
- (To Terakado Tsuu) "No matter how much people hate us, no matter how much we're ridiculed, but we'll definietly not become men who can't protect the things that need to be protected."
- (To Shinsengumi) "Draw your swords! Even if you have to step over my dead body, you have things you need to protect, now come at me!"
- (To Okita Sougo) "I don't care about that gap you created on your own. I'll jump across it as many times as it takes, and punch some sense into you."
- "If someone went the wrong way, the other two would beat him up until he got back on track. That's how it always been. That's why we'll always stay on the right path!"
- (To Shimura Shinpachi ) ''When I think about your sister... I get turned on.''
- ↑ Gintama chapters 482-483