The fictional character commonly known as Kefka Palazzo, is a great villain that appears within the world renown video game series entitled Final Fantasy. The character will often occasionally appear with the names Kefuka Parattso or Cefca Palazzo. Kefka was originally designed and created by the Japanese artist Yoshitaka Amano. He originally appears as the primary antagonist within Final Fantasy VI, and also within Dissidia Final Fantasy, in which Kefka was redesigned by the Japanese video game director Tetsuya Nomura. The character has also appeared outside of video games, in such great film titles as Dissidia, where Kefka's voice was done by Shigeru Chiba for the Japanese release, and Dave Wittenberg within the film's English counterpart. Kefka first appeared in 1994 within Final Fantasy VI, making his character almost sixteen years old. Kefka has often been referred to as one of the most world renown villains within a video game series.
With regard to the design and conception of Kefka's physical attributes, he was completely built from the ground up by artist Yoshitaka Amano. In the beginning the character development group only had a very lose set of guidelines for his appearance, which consisted of sketches and some rough story line. After first toying with a series of initial character concepts, it was agreed upon that the first idea was boring, and thus the design team decided to create Kefka as sort of a crazy and irrational character. Once it was firmly decided upon that Kefka would be sort of a crazy character, they then begin to create his physical characteristics with that as a foundation. He was then molded into a joker or clown like person, with of course a severe evil or mean streak running through him. He was given a long flowing red cape, creepy joker like face paint or makeup, striped leg stockings, and a multicolored and extravagant set of shoes and accessories.
Some of you who are not familiar with Kefka or Final Fantasy, might be wondering how Kefka relates to angels, the central theme of our website. Well Kefka is still one of the only video game figures who has ever appeared as a Seraphim like angel. In the final battle and end scene of Final Fantasy VI, Kefka receives ultimate and absolute power. Upon receiving this power, he is transformed into a Seraphim angel. In this final scene Kefka descends from the heavens as a six winged angel. His skin is purple, and he has a royal burgundy or dark purple robe loosely wrapped around his body, which is clearly inspired by Renaissance period angel paintings. He also has blonde hair, and a feather sticking off of his head. His wings are pure white in areas, and lavender purple in other places. In this angelic Seraphim transition, he floats in the sky, with floating clouds and bright beams of light radiating from the background. The whole presentation is extremely well made.
The Christian angel inspired portrayal of Kefka Palazzo was a quick hit after the Final Fantasy VI series was launched, and soon afterwards Kefka action figures and collectibles became available. Many of these plastic and glass collectibles are worth a lot of money today, especially if they are still sealed within their original box or packaging. There have also been numerous Japanese anime characters that have arisen over the last decade that were directly inspired by this original angelic portrayal of Kefka. For those of you who are familiar with Japanese comics, anime, and contemporary art, then you know that Christian angels are hugely popular, many of which are created with their Biblical characteristics being fairly accurate and in accordance with Judeo Christianity or Judaism. In fact judging by the scale of angel art that I've seen in Japan, I would go so far as to say that the last twenty years has seen an angel revival in art and cinematography.