|“||I am a kwami, and my name is Tikki.||”|
As explained by Wang Fu, Wayzz, and Tikki in the second issue of Miraculous Adventures, kwamis are formed whenever a new abstract idea or emotion comes into existence in the universe, such as creation, love, beauty, and mathematics. These emotions can come into being at different times, such as the kwami of creation, Tikki, who was formed at the beginning of the universe and thus was the first kwami to exist.
All kwamis know each other and were able to journey across the universe for a very long time. However, the kwamis couldn't be sensed by regular tangible creatures like humans and thus were unable to interact with them. The issue was resolved thousands of years ago, when a Chinese mage figured out how to create magical jewels, Miraculouses, in order for the kwamis to be able to communicate with people.
From that point on, kwamis helped the wearers of their Miraculouses achieve good around all the world, although there were instances where they became stuck with villainous holders and were forced to help them with their diabolical schemes due to being bound to their holder's every command. Some of them have made long lasting and meaningful bonds of friendship with their holders and to commerate that special bond they'd give their holders a jewel called a Kwagatama.
A long time ago (even enough for some kwamis to forget), they were blocked by a magical spell that prevents them from speaking the name of their owners so they wouldn't be allowed to say their holder's real name to other kwamis.
All kwamis know the Guardian of the Miraculous but aren't allowed to reveal him to their wielders except in a great emergency, as in "Princess Fragrance", "The Collector", and "Syren". Kwamis all feel a sense of familiarity with the Miraculous spellbook when they see it, implying a certain past with it.
Even though kwamis are familiar with the book, they don't know how to read it, as revealed by Nooroo in "Syren". This is because kwamis must never know the spells that are inside the book, which is meant as a precaution should a kwami fall into the wrong hands. Also, according to Tikki, kwamis aren't allowed to leave their Miraculous wielder's side in case someone becomes akumatized.
Generally, kwamis are small, being around 10 centimeters (or 4 inches) in height, with large heads and tiny bodies. They have arms and legs, but they lack fingers and toes yet are still able to lift things. The animal theme that they display is reflected in their Miraculous; for example, Plagg is black with green eyes, cat-like ears, and a cat-like tail, thus fittingly his Miraculous is the Cat Miraculous.
After consuming certain potions made from the Miraculous spellbook their appearances will change. If the aqua mode potion is used, the kwami will gain fins and a tail. In "ice mode", the kwamis gain crystals on their bodies.
Kwamis can become intangible to pass through solid objects, like locker doors or chains. In "The Collector", it is noted that they aren't able to be filmed or photographed, not showing up in photos and videos to prevent others from discovering their existence. Normally, kwamis can fly and levitate, even at high speeds, as shown by Plagg . As well as at high altitudes, as shown by Tikki .
Even though they are small, kwamis appear to have enough strength to hold things that are larger and/or heavier than themselves.
Kwamis inhabit pieces of Miraculous jewelry in order to give the person wearing them the ability to transform into superheroes and gain a specific power based of the abstract idea or emotion that made the kwami come into existence, such as Trixx granting the power of illusion via Mirage. They are aware of the actions of the people who possess their Miraculous when transformed, but they cannot communicate with their holders at such times. For example, Plagg laughs at how Adrien said rude things to Ladybug when he was possessed by Dark Cupid's arrow. At the same time, the extent they can be aware what is happening when their Miraculous is used is uncertain: in "Ladybug & Cat Noir", Tikki and Plagg appear to be unaware of whether or not the akuma was captured. And yet, in "Style Queen", Tikki was aware of the effects of the magic ladybugs.
The Miraculous transformation can last indefinitely unless the Miraculous' special power is used, at which point the wearer has about five minutes until they revert to their normal form and the kwami leaves the Miraculous. To regain power, to strengthen themselves, and to transform their wearer again, the kwamis need to refuel by eating food. Some have a preference for specific foods: for instance, Plagg's favorite food is Camembert cheese, but he is willing to eat other types of food if Camembert isn't available for him, preferably some kind of cheese. But when working with an adult holder the kwamis can the transformation even longer. Despite their ages and powers, kwamis can get sick, as seen when Tikki becomes sick after helping Marinette defeat a villain in pouring rain. Wang Fu is able to assist in their recovery and heal them. Despite the fact that they can become ill, it's unknown if it can only occur while bound to a Miraculous, or to what extent this could harm them or affect their wielders. As abstract entities, they have been around since before the creation of the Miraculouses, meaning even if their Miraculous is destroyed (by Cataclysm) or erased from the timeline, they will return to their natural state, in which case they cannot be perceived by human senses under normal circumstances; they do not cease to exist. It is also not known if they are truly immortal. Based on their origins, they may live on forever after coming into existence. Also, the ideas, concepts, or emotions that create them are seemingly not bound to other beings, since Tikki was born alongside the universe, and not due to the concept of creation being discovered or realized at a later point in time.
Kwamis also perform a ritual for their Miraculous holders where they create a kwagatama inside their bodies from the hairs of their past and current holders. They then present the charm to their current bearer for a special occasion, such as a birthday.
Kwamis can communicate with each other once in every “cycle” on their birthday, if they gather in the Miracle Box at a specific time and sing all together. The more kwamis there are, the stronger the connection. They also can dispel the connection with their hands. If a kwami's powers are active during that time frame, the other kwamis will contact the Miraculous' holder and that person can track them down if they stay connected, this apparently being the only way a kwami's wielder can communicate with them when they're in their world.
Kwamis are able to perform their respective Miraculous holder's power without their jewels, but to a much greater extent which can even turn uncontrollable. This is shown in "Style Queen" when Plagg was able to perform Cat Noir's Cataclysm by coming into direct contact with the Eiffel Tower's floor, thus destroying the entire structure as well as severely damaging the Pont d'Iéna bridge and Montparnasse Tower.
When kwamis are fused with their owners they have some level of resistance to an akumatized villain's attacks, as seen in "Dark Cupid". However, if their holders are attacked by an akumatized villain's powers and detransform afterwards, the effects will transfer to the kwamis, as seen in "Oblivio". Also while transformed with their holders if said powers are used on them, the kwami will be severely weakened after detransforming, as happened with Plagg and Cataclysm in "Miraculer".
Potions from the Miraculous spellbook are able to alter a kwamis appearance and form by drinking the potion directly or consuming something that contains it. Besides modifying a kwami's appearance and form, potions also help the wielder get new abilities and appearances in their superhero form, depending on the potion the kwami consumed.
The known power ups are:
- Aqua - The kwami's legs are replaced with a fish tail, and their hands are replaced with flippers. It allows the kwami to grant underwater abilities to their holder. The potion's color is green.
- Kwamis seen with the underwater power up: Aqua Tikki, Aqua Plagg
- Ice - The kwami grows three ice shards somewhere on its body, while in some cases some part of the body, such as Tikki's circular spot, turns into a hexagon. It allows the kwami to grant ice-related power to their holder. The potion's color is light blue.
- Kwamis seen with the ice power up: Stalac Tikki, Plagg Glacier
List of known Kwamis
- The concept of the kwamis was created by Bandai. A kwami is a "quantic (small) kami." In Japanese, kami (神) often refers to god or certain kind of spirits.
- Wilfried Pain noted in a Twitter response that kwamis are "some kind of god" and don't exactly have genders. He also mentioned that the kwamis are supposed to look very cute.
- According to Thomas Astruc during a Miraculous panel at Ludicomix 2018, some kwamis being inspired by the Chinese zodiac signs is because he wants the world to get to know the elements of oriental culture.
- According to Thomas Astruc, the name of every kwami has to be a short name with double letters in it. Nooroo's name, in fact, has two doubles.
- In "Timebreaker", Tikki is able to sense her own power in the Ladybug from the future. Similarly, Wayzz is able to sense the power of Nooroo and the Butterfly Miraculous in "Ladybug & Cat Noir (Origins - Part 1)".
- Kwamis are like Aladdin's genie, having to obey their holders' desires. They aren't genies themselves; however, genies do exist in-universe, according to Plagg in "Ladybug & Cat Noir".
- It is unknown if kwamis can be akumatized, but Season 2 would have the answers, as revealed at the Miraculous Ladybug panel at San Diego Comic-Con 2016.
- In "Queen Wasp", kwamis can be akumatized indirectly (except Nooroo himself) if the Miraculous they're inside of becomes the akumatized object.
- If the Miraculous jewel gets destroyed, the kwami reverts to their spirit form, unable to be seen by living beings.
- According to Jeremy Zag, Season 2 would include an episode revealing the origins of the kwamis.
- The New York Comic Con 2016 panel additionally noted that there would be Miraculous Secrets webisodes that focus on the kwamis, notably Tikki and Plagg (revealed as "Tikki" and "Plagg"), and that there may be more than one episode in new seasons that centers on them. "Sandboy" is one such episode.
- The official Miraculous Ladybug Twitter account noted that while more kwamis would be seen in Season 2, it wouldn't be all of them.
- According to Tikki in "Sandboy", a kwami's cycle or birthday is equivalent to several hundred human years.
- Plagg used his Cataclysm to make the dinosaurs go extinct, but since this happened before the jewels were made, it means that kwamis are capable of using their powers in their spirit forms.
- Even though some kwamis don't have noses they seem to have a sense of smell; for example, in "Stormy Weather" Plagg said he could "smell Camembert in his sleep."
- In "Oblivio", he was seen sniffing Adrien's shirt, smelling the Camembert within.
- As Miraculouses have been used by people across the world throughout history, it's likely that kwamis are able to understand and speak many, if not all, languages to communicate with their holders.
- This also implies that the phrases used to transform and use their powers can be said in any language.