Keith Howard (manga)
|Nicknames||Bandit Keith (バンデット・キース Bandetto Kīsu)|
|Least favorite food||Sushi|
|Manga debut||Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 28|
Keith Howard, also known by the nickname Bandit Keith, is a character in the Yu-Gi-Oh! manga. This is the original depiction of Bandit Keith. He was an experienced and successful Duel Monsters player, but had a tendency to cheat and use unsavory means to win.
Keith was the former United States Duel Monsters champion and number one ranked Card Professor. He got the nickname Bandit Keith, because of his success in winning big prizes. All of his opponents ceased playing any card games, after losing to him, due to him defeating them so brutally that the sight of a card brings great trauma to them. His reputation slumped after a humiliating defeat to Maximillion J. Pegasus, in a challenge Duel. Afterwards, Keith became immersed in alcohol, drugs and underground gambling, including playing Russian roulette. To get revenge on Pegasus, he snuck his way into the Duelist Kingdom tournament. He cheated throughout the tournament and aided three other participants, hoping to qualify as the four semifinalists. However, after one of them lost to Katsuya Jonouchi, Keith turned on them and took their remaining Star Chips for himself. He lost to Jonouchi, in the semifinals, after which he confronted Pegasus in an attempt to steal the prize. However Pegasus, having seen Keith cheat, subjected him to a Penalty Game, killing him.
In the English manga, much of Keith's dialogue is modified to include censored profanity, in part to reflect his ruder pattern of speech from the original Japanese. It also has him refer to Jonouchi, by the nickname, "Joey", which is his name in the English anime.
Keith is a tall blonde-haired man with blue eyes. He is thin in the face; in the present he is unshaven; in his prime as a Card professor he was clean shaven. He wears a navy blue shirt, a large sleeveless leather vest with studded shoulders and a high collar, tan pants, and tall leather boots. Keith also wears an American flag bandanna over his shaggy blonde hair, sunglasses, studded wristbands that he uses to conceal cards, and a cross necklace in addition to a simpler cord. Prior to his fall from grace, he kept his sunglasses on his forehead and didn't wear a vest. After his resurrection in Yu-Gi-Oh! R, Keith is thinner and wears a longer-sleeved shirt.
Keith challenged Maximillion J. Pegasus, the creator of Duel Monsters to a Duel. At first Pegasus was not interested, but later accepted under the conditions that the prize be one million U.S. dollars, the Duel take place in a large stadium capable of holding fifty thousand people, be broadcast nationwide and the earnings be split with the sponsors and TV stations. Keith agreed and the Duel took place in the New York Duel Stadium.
Pegasus used the time before the Duel to gather children unfamiliar with the rules and teach them how to play. When the Duel started, Pegasus did not touch his cards. He stared at Keith for a moment, and performed a Mind Scan, reading Keith's plans for the Duel. He wrote down Keith's cards, strategies and how to counter them on a piece of paper, before calling over one of the children he had been speaking to earlier, Tom. Pegasus gave Tom the paper and left the table, asking Tom to take over for him. Keith was unhappy with Pegasus' antics, but thought this would at least guarantee him to win the prize money.
After a few turns, Keith Summoned a monster, but Tom countered by playing "Flying Elephant" in Attack Mode, nullifying the fissure attack Keith was attempting and winning the Duel. Tom was surprised by how the paper Pegasus had given him detailed all the moves Keith made and described how to beat him. Keith snatched the paper and was surprised to see that it was true.
Keith snuck his way into the Duelist Kingdom tournament to try and get revenge on Pegasus for humiliating him. He filled his jacket with numerous Decks, filled with rare cards, capable of countering any opponent, and managed to avoid having them confiscated, due to the tournament's rule saying forty cards per participant. He teamed up with Ghost Kozuka, Takaido[Note 1] and Satake,[Note 1] and helped them win their Duels, in the hopes of splitting their Star Chips and entering Pegasus Castle as the four semifinalists.
Satake and Kozuka reported to Keith when they spotted a group of people, including two Duelists. They thought that they might be safer avoiding them, as one of them was Yugi Mutou, who was famous for beating Seto Kaiba and a favorite to enter the castle. Keith had not heard of Yugi, but said that the people, who thought he was a favorite, did not know what they were talking about. He suggested that they separate the other Duelist, Katsuya Jonouchi from Yugi's group and take him to the hidden underground Battle Box in the crypt. He explained that this Battle Box had a Graveyard terrain and nominated Kozuka to Duel Jonouchi, since he used Zombie cards, which would be powered-up by the crypt. However, he was dissatisfied with Kozuka's Deck and lent him some of his own cards, to strengthen it.
Keith's companions kidnapped Jonouchi, while he was urinating and dragged him into the cave. Keith mocked Jonouchi for fainting and ordered Satake to wake him up. Keith helped Kozuka throughout the Duel. He discouraged him from playing Zombie cards, which would benefit from the Field Power Source, causing his first three monsters to be easily destroyed. However Kozuka soon drew "Call of the Haunted" and revived his monsters as Zombies, which would revive even stronger each time they were destroyed. As Keith continued to help Kozuka, Jonouchi asked who he was and then realized he was the Card Professor, who had only been defeated by Pegasus, that Seto Kaiba had told him about. Keith got Kozuka to use "Pumpking the King of Ghosts" to strengthen the Zombies and wait for "Stop Defense" to complete the combo. However Jonouchi managed to win the Duel, before Kozuka could make use of "Stop Defense".
While they were leaving the cave, Jonouchi suggested to Keith that he play fair next time. Keith told Jonouchi not to be telling him how to play the game, which he claimed was about outwitting the opponent, an act which begins before the game starts. He insisted that Jonouchi drop the nice guy act, after which prizes and glory would come his way. To give an example, he showed him his extra Decks he had smuggled into the tournament. Dark Yugi, who had caught up to Jonouchi, reminded Keith of the forty card rule. Keith claimed that since he was an unofficial participant that rule did not apply to him, and that his only rule was to get to Pegasus Castle at whatever cost it took.
Keith and his companions exited the cave before Jonouchi and his friends. Keith then ordered Kozuka, Takaido and Satake to block the exit with a boulder, trapping the others inside. He then proceeded to beat up Kozuka for losing. Kozuka pleaded that he had only played the cards Keith told him to, but Keith insisted that he should have won in that case. He spat on Kozuka and called him useless without his Star Chips. He then turned to Takaido and Satake and demanded that they give him each of their five Star Chips along with one of their Duel Gloves. After taking them, he beat up the two and made his way to the castle.
Keith arrived at the castle and qualified as the first of the four finalists. He discovered that Yugi and his friends escaped the cave, as he saw Dark Yugi and Kaiba preparing to Duel nearby. Keith laughed at Kaiba's threat to commit suicide if he lost and was surprised that Yugi refrained from winning because of this. Having overheard Kaiba's metaphor, stating that each person's life is a chip God gave them to play games, Keith asked Kaiba if the chip was worth the same for each person: rich or poor. Kaiba replied that he thought that distinction was to be made by "prize hunting hyenas", such as Keith, while they hunted for their next feast.
When Yugi, Jonouchi and their friends entered the castle, Jonouchi tried to start a fight with Keith, for trapping them in the cave. However Keith directed his attention to the impending Duel between Pegasus and Kaiba. Keith cursed Pegasus during the Duel, for using a powerful he had created for himself "Toon World", and thought that nobody stood a chance against that card.
Keith and the other finalists, Yugi, Jonouchi and Mai Kujaku, were told that the finals would take place the next day. In order to participate, they needed to have one of the two cards, "The Honor of the King's Right" or "The Honor of the King's Left", which were included in their invitation. As he had not been invited, Keith had neither of those cards. Keith chose not to attend the dinner party, during which Jonouchi was matched as his opponent for the semifinals. When the others left the party, Keith hid in the hall and watched which bedrooms they went into. Later that night, he snuck into Jonouchi's room and stole his "The Honor of the King's Right". He was startled by the sound of Jonouchi threatening to beat him, but then realized he was just talking in his sleep. As he left the room, Yugi also came out of his room, having heard Jonouchi shouting, and asked if he was okay. Pretending to be Jonouchi, Keith said he was fine. Yugi realized he was not Jonouchi and asked what he was doing. Keith proceeded to punch Yugi, until he kept quiet. However, Jonouchi came out of his room and fought Keith off. Keith then returned to his room, knowing Jonouchi did not have another "Honor" card, meaning he would be disqualified.
The next day, Keith put his feet on the table at the Duel Arena, before his Duel. When Jonouchi stated his dislike of seeing the bottom of someone else's boots, Keith offered to forfeit if Jonouchi licked the bottom of his boot. Dark Yugi admonished him on disrespecting a Duelist's battlefield, but Keith asked if Jonouchi has the right to be called a Duelist. He then presented "The Honor of the King's Right" and reminded Jonouchi he also needed one to sit at the table. Jonouchi was given five minutes to find his card and Keith accused him of pretending to forget it, as he was too afraid to Duel. However Jonouchi managed to return in time after been given Mai's "The Honor of the King's Right".
Keith used Machine monsters, built with anti-magic armor, making them immune to the magic-based attacks of some of Jonouchi's cards. He also used the non-Machine, Zoa, to lure Jonouchi into attacking, before turning it into "Metalzoa", using "Metalmorph". Again, he used "Stop Defense", to prevent Jonouchi playing cards in Defense Mode. Jonouchi still managed to dispatch of Keith's Machines, using "Garoozis" and Trap Cards. Pegasus knew that Jonouchi's experience, strategy and Deck strength did not come close to Keith's and wondered what was making up for the difference. He decided to read their minds and saw that Keith was filled with revenge and despair, while Jonouchi was filled with hope and trust.
Illustrating a game of Russian roulette, with his hand, Keith asked if Jonouchi had ever risked his life and seen Hell. He described Hell as a place where one does not care who they have to kill, as long as it means saving themselves. He added that Duelist Kingdom is the same thing and the only way out of his Hell is through Pegasus. Keith then Summoned "Barrel Dragon", which used its "Russian Roulette" effect to destroy Jonouchi's monsters. Jonouchi countered with his own gamble card, "Time Wizard", which weakened "Barrel Dragon" and strengthened "Baby Dragon" into "Thousand Dragon". However Keith used "Time Machine" to restore "Barrel Dragon" to its previous state, making it strong enough to beat "Thousand Dragon".
Using "Copycat" on "Metalmorph", Jonouchi turned his "Red-Eyes Black Dragon" into "Red-Eyes Black Metal Dragon", which defeated a number of Keith's machines. Using the "7 Completed" cards hidden in his wrist band and the "Shield and Sword" he took with "Pillager", Keith made his "Slot Machine" stronger than "Red-Eyes". However Jonouchi used "Graverobber" on "Time Machine", returning "Red-Eyes Darkness Metal Dragon" to its previous ATK, defeating "Slot Machine" and winning the Duel.
After his Duel, Keith met Pegasus in the hall. He held out a knife and demanded that Pegasus give him the prize. Pegasus' guard prepared to take out a gun, but Pegasus insisted there was no need for a weapon. He commented on how undignified the "old 'prize king'" was now. Pegasus said that he was aware Keith had cheated against Jonouchi and that he intended to punish him. Keith did not care and said it was legal by his rules. Pegasus deemed Keith to have lost his Duelist's mind when they fought in America and inflicted the "Hand and Gun" Penalty Game on him. Keith's hand then turned into a gun, which he was forced to use to play Russian roulette with, killing himself.
The following events from Yu-Gi-Oh! R are of disputed canon.
Yako Tenma revived Keith using "The Wicked Avatar", in order to gain information about Pegasus' death, since he was a competitor at Duelist Kingdom. Ultimately, Keith lied and said that Yugi killed him, furthering Yako's thirst for revenge; he was genuinely surprised when he later learned that Yugi hadn't killed Pegasus, but didn't care either way.
He first appears after Deschutes Lew is defeated, apparently attempting to take "The Wicked Avatar" and conversing with Yako, who explains that without the Duels, the RA Project could not succeed. Later, after Gekko Tenma has joined up with Yugi, he waits for them with Ted Banias, having been gambling with him (Banias claiming that he was cheating). He accused Gekko of losing to Banias on purpose to help the RA Project succeed, only to watch in shock as Gekko turned the Duel around and defated Banias in a single turn. After Banias's loss, he angrily beat him up, claiming his debt had doubled, but the beating had caused Banias to pass out. Yugi and Gekko asked for the key card, unless he was going to fight them next, but Keith tells them he'll take them right to Yako himself.
On the way, they meet up with Richie Merced and Depre Scott, and Richie beats Keith up for trying to bypass them just to lure out his "someone special." Yugi defends him, and Gekko defuses the situation by pointing out that Keith isn't Richie's real target. With the Card Professors departing to Duel Yugi and Gekko, Keith struggled to his feet and walked down the hall. After Richie defeated Gekko and decided to go after Jonouchi, Keith leapt off the top of the balcony and attacked Richie for beating him up earlier. Richie angrily pointed out that Keith had only been a guinea pig for Pegasus's Summoning, but Keith retorted that he did not care. He only had one target - Jonouchi, and that was the reason he was alive, so he was not giving him to Richie. Admitting that he didn't know all the new rules yet, he Duels and defeats Richie with "The Wicked Eraser" as part of Yako's plan to provide energy for the RA Project, and he took the one-of-a-kind black Duel Disk that only the top Card Professor was allowed to wear, claiming that he was number-one top Card Professor.
He then encountered Dark Yugi and Gekko, but before anything could happen, Jonouchi dropped down from an air vent to attack Gekko, as he thought he was Yako. Honda dropped down and noticed Keith too, but Jonouchi appeared to have missed him, and Keith laughed, commenting that he hadn't felt this good since waking up for the first time. Jonouchi continued to ignore him, and Keith lost his temper, threatening to shoot Jonouchi if he didn't turn and face him. Jonouchi grinned (having taken notice of him earlier), and then proceeded to mock him, but decided to handle Keith alone, allowing Dark Yugi, Gekko and Honda to bypass him. The two then Dueled against each other once again. During this confrontation, he used a new Machine Deck, composed of the "Motor" series, as well as the "The Wicked Eraser". Keith revealed that he hated Jonouchi as much as Pegasus, because of the defeat at Duelist Kingdom. He claimed to have came back solely for revenge; having lost his chance to Duel against Pegasus, who had died, Keith set his attention on the only other person who ever defeated him: Jonouchi. Keith had used Yako's own desire for revenge to help lure Jonouchi to him; he cracks up at how easily the kid believed everything he said.
During the Duel, Jonouchi used the "Time Machine" card he left behind at the Kingdom that Jonouchi had picked up. Keith was furious that Jonouchi had stolen his card, but Jonouchi suggested he hand over something better after Jonouchi won this time - namely the black Duel Disk. Keith then tried to cheat, but the alarm of the Duel Disk prevented him to slipping in "Ring of Destruction" from his wristband; he became angered that Seto Kaiba did this. He gained the upper hand when he sealed Jonouchi's Set cards and Summoned "The Wicked Eraser (though he was shown to dislike the card and implied that it would be boring to win with it). Jonouchi used "Summon Capture" to take Keith's "Fiendish Engine Ω" and destroy "The Eraser". But when "The Eraser" was destroyed, its black blood drenched the field and enveloped the two Duelists in darkness, which was dispelled when Jonouchi defeated Keith. Having lost, Keith, consumed with rage, threw the black Duel Disk to Jonouchi and angrily demanded Jonouchi fight him again. However instead Jonouchi returned the "Time Machine" card, and offered Keith a chance for one more rematch when Keith lets go of the his grudge, and to fight him for fun. After the Duel with Jonouchi, Keith slumped up against the wall; collapsed.
In Project R.A., his Deck is based on Summoning high-powered cards, specifically "The Wicked Eraser", similarly to Yako Tenma's Deck. However, the main body of his Deck is composed of "Motor" cards, which leave "Motor Parts" on the field after they are destroyed, giving Keith easier access to high-Level monsters. His "Ring of Destruction card was slipped from his wristband, but due to the Duel Disk's anti-cheating installation, it was meaningless.
|VS — Maximillion J. Pegasus||Lose||Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 28|
|VS — Katsuya Jonouchi||Duelist Kingdom||Lose|
|VS — Richie Merced||Project R.A.||Win||R31|
|VS — Katsuya Jonouchi||Project R.A.||Lose||R33–R36|
- Takahashi, Kazuki (2002). "Chapter 1: Character Directory". Yu-Gi-Oh! Character Guidebook: The Gospel of Truth (in Japanese). Shueisha. p. 55. ISBN 4-08-873363-0.
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 28
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 62
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 29
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 33
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 30
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 31
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 32
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 41
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel 46: "The Evil Dragon Cards (Part 1)"
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 47
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 48
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 51
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 52
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 53
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 54
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 60
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 61
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 63
- Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 64
- This name is not used in the manga.