Among the extensive list of characters in Hunter x Hunter is Leorio Paradinight, who’s part of the beloved main quartet in the series alongside Gon, Killua, and Kurapika. Taking into consideration his appearance alongside the other three characters, many have been confused with Leorio’s age. Why is he hanging around with a bunch of kids?
Hunter x Hunter by Yoshihiro Togashi began serialization in Weekly Shōnen Jump in 1998. The manga isn’t finished yet but is currently on hiatus due to the mangaka’s health. There are two anime adaptations—one by Nippon Animation in 1998 and one in 2011 by Madhouse.
It follows the story of Gon Freecss, a young boy who wants to become a Hunter like his father, Ging. Hunters are a special kind of member of society who possesses abilities that can be used in finding valued items, creatures, and even protecting individuals. To become a Hunter, one must go through the difficult and rigorous Hunter Exam; which only very few individuals pass per run.
Leorio is introduced at the very beginning of the story as one of Gon’s fellow examinees. His reason for joining the Hunter Exam is to become a doctor and for him to achieve that he needs a lot of money—which won’t be a problem anymore once he becomes a Hunter. During one of the early phases of the exam, Killua calls Leorio an “old man”. He immediately reacts and tells them that he’s a teenager just like the rest of them—much to the surprise of Gon, Killua, and Kurapika.
According to the Hunter x Hunter Hunter Association Official Issue: Hunter’s Guide; Character & World Official Databook, Leorio was 19 years old during his debut. He is currently 21 years old following the manga’s timeline.
Somehow I’m just as surprised as the other three. Leorio’s signature look is a dark blue business suit and he carries around a briefcase. That doesn’t necessarily scream “19-year-old”. But then again, Leorio’s just one of many characters in anime who don’t exactly look their age.