I liked Kaoru’s character. She was a very strong woman. I liked the fact that she had a different appearance than everybody else, most notably her short, blond hair. She was physically very large, so that gave her an edge in dealing with people in her line of work. Unafraid to confront a man (a supposed “tough guy”), she exhibits a very matter-of-fact attitude which she probably acquired her years as a wrestler. This is seen when she gets her money from the man on the motorcycle in front of Hotel Alphaville: “Ya know, fella, I haven’t been paid for my hotel room.” (45) She even admits to Mari what her life is like, saying “Hell, you can see I’m more like a bouncer or bodyguard.” (58) Bouncers and bodyguards have been (still are) men’s roles, obviously because the nature of the job requires strength and build.
Short hair and large physical stature are male characteristics, giving Kaoru a somewhat “manly” appearance. She also was in a position of leadership. The nature of the business aside, she still played a “boss” role, being in charge of the entire hotel. She also exhibited masculine traits in her manner of speech, which was very direct and to the point: “Ya know, fella” (as mentioned before) “Man!” (46) “I could really use a beer.” (51) Of course, women say these words, too, but combined with the physical description of Kaoru, her mannerisms, and her position at the hotel, this type of speech lends to the overall “masculinization” of her character.