I’m a Psychology major with Asperger’s syndrome and I’ve always wondered why I related so much to Kankri Vantas, of all characters. I haven’t been as much of an ass as he is since about 8th-9th grade, so I’m kind of wondering “what’s up with that”, and then it hits me. He shows strong signs of having Asperger’s Syndrome, if not one of various similar autism spectrum disorders.
Let me review the symptoms, with examples to help the point along. Children and teens with Asperger’s Syndrome may:
1) Fail to pick up on social cues, lack inborn social skills, have difficulty starting and maintaining conversations, and/or show difficulty taking turns while talking
2) Express little emotion, make insensitive remarks, and appear to lack empathy for others unless corrected
3) Fail to comprehend tone in others speech; this may lead to them taking a joke or sarcastic comment literally and become the butt of a joke to others
4) Develop and overly formal manner of speech, both in writing and in spoken dialogue
5) Avoid eye contact, stare at others, or closely observe others without knowledge of a social taboo tied to watching others; may make things awkward with people they are fond of as a result
6) Make unusual expressions or have odd posture
7) Preoccupy themselves with specific topics which they are particularly knowledgeable about
8) Have heightened physical or auditory sensitivity
9) Wear specific items for comfort and/or dress in an unusual or eccentric manner
10) Have little understanding or regard for social conventions, such as joining in on closed conversations
Also, after running his infamous “rant” through a tone analyzer, I found something quite interesting that most people overlook.
Shown above is a full analysis of the word choice he used in the speech. Most of it was of course in social tone, despite the length of it that makes it seem like a book, so it is certain that he is in fact trying to talk to Karkat. However, he displays some distinct traits in the divisions of his speech.
Like most people with Autism Spectrum Disorders, Kankri displays little to no emotion in his speech while talking, accounting for only 4% of his total word mass, and most of that 4% is allotted to cheerful points in an attempt to make his speech seem more interesting. This shows that he is aware that people become bored with him but can do little to change his behavior, a telltale sign of mental illness and disorder.
His social tone is divided into three parts, agreeableness, conscientiousness, and openness. Agreeableness is almost entirely positive, which shows his attempt at persuasion in his speech, while his conscientiousness and openness are mostly negative. High focus on negativity in the conscience is often due to experiencing numerous instances of being ignored or subjected to negative stimuli, which is elaborated upon in his explanation of his experience (though indirectly) with the Beforan culling system.
His writing tone that pops up in his speech dusts his monologue with analytical and tentative points as he gives his take on Beforan and Alternian cultures. This is typical of speech with a topic and is not an abnormality unlike the other two categories.
Sorry for making this so long, but I felt as though I should elaborate on every point that I could think to do so, and mind you there are many more symptoms and qualifying factors for Asperger’s Syndrome than what is listed above; I merely presented what I did as strong evidence in favor of the likelihood of him possessing such a disorder and did not intend to present such information in a way that it could be taken to self-diagnose (please do not self-diagnose mental illness outside of simple disorders such as GAD or MDD).
can we also talk about how being genuine about their feelings seems to be a tie-in with all canon seer’s? Especially positive feelings?
Jasperose said that as a girl she remembers being very guarded about her feelings, and Gameover!Rose said she regretted never telling Kanaya and her mother that she loved them both.
Now Terezi says she doesn’t understand why she can never just tell people how much they mean to her while they’re around. She’s guarded about her positive feelings as well.
With Kankri we kind of have to look a little closer. He’s obviously got red feelings for Latula, but he’s “celibate” and refuses to be in any quarents with anyone. His self-righteous ramblings drive people away most of the time, but notice Kankri is only ever going on about other peoples problems and not his own? Hussie’s also said Karkat’s facade hides deep-seeded insecurity while Kankri’s hides a more arrogant side. (Arrogance also seems to be a thing for seers).
Point is, Rose and Terezi to some degree have both recognized this pattern as a flaw that they should work towards fixing. Kankri never did and then he died.
In alot of old art seers are depicted as “blind” with long, flowing hoods over their faces, or scarves etc etc. veiling their face. The face is the main way that people show emotion, so Homestuck seers being emotionally guarded or insincere could be their metaphorical “veil”.
So I redid Kankri to go along with the Damara I made a few days ago! I tried making the hair as accurate as possible, and noticed that Kankri had the exact same swoop in his hair as John on their talksprites, so yeah Kankri obviously would have that too! I honestly like this so much more than the last one.
Edit: Oh, and as far as the creator of the walkaround sprites for Openbound says, Kankri wears dark gray hightops with a red stripe down the middle! I tried including that in the artistic representation here.