He was first introduced in The Sandstorm Part A, where he briefly took over Cecil's abandoned show. He was formally introduced in The Sandstorm Part B, where it was revealed that a vortex opened up in his radio booth and allowed him to wander briefly into Night Vale.
As revealed in The Sandstorm, Kevin is Cecil's double. They are both described as "not tall or short, not thin or fat" with similar hair and noses. Kevin describes himself as looking just like anyone else.
Kevin's voice is softer, gentler and more light-hearted than Cecil's.
Cecil comments that Kevin's smile makes him look wicked and Steve Carlsberg describes the sight of his smile as "really gross." Hiram McDaniels' gold head describes him as having "teeth like an abandoned cemetery." Kevin states he spends a lot of time practicing his smile in the bathroom mirror, and that people drop senseless at the sight of it.
Cecil describes Kevin as having eyes as "black as obsidian" that are "full but tight," while Hiram's gold head describes his eyes as "missing." Carlos describes Kevin as wearing dark sunglasses.
Cecil describes Kevin as wearing a tie and the Whispering Forest compliments Kevin on his vest and "clever and colorful fashion sense." Cecil comments that Kevin's lapels are bloodstained while Carlos insists that his clothes look bloodstained but are actually just covered in barbecue sauce. Later, he discovers that the "barbecue sauce" was in fact blood. Hiram describes Kevin as having "bloodstained skin."
Kevin is upbeat, optimistic, malevolent, and malicious. He values hard work, timeliness, cleanliness, organization, alphabetization of anything that can be alphabetized, being unique, and a good basic knowledge of viscera. He believes that you're worth nothing if you're not smiling: He believes in thinking happy thoughts and banishing unhappy thoughts, and if all else fails self-mutilation will help you smile more.
Kevin likes cats and foxes and describes himself as having a healthy respect for nature. His hobbies include listening to music, reading, and getting nosy people to climb into an invention of his called "The Pain Tunnel." When he has a bad day, he watches The Great British Bakeoff, stating he likes seeing them spill or cut/burn themselves. He states the contestants can hear him and he enjoys using this ability to taunt them until they cry.
He has a Twitter account.
He is distrustful of the government, preferring to trust private business to care for people.
Unlike Cecil, who is squeamish around gore, Kevin revels in it. Cecil describes Kevin's radio booth in Desert Bluffs as follows: the walls are covered in blood, the soundboard is cluttered with animal viscera, the floor is saturated with blood and teeth are scattered around, and skin and clumps of hair hang from the broken glass of the control booth. During the StrexCorp takeover, Kevin murders the NVCR sales team to "redecorate" Cecil's radio booth. While in the desert otherworld, Kevin states that he bloodied his studio using lizards and rodents. He also used "some old bones and loose teeth and beaks and things" in his décor. Kevin states that his radio booth in Desert Bluffs was extremely hot, and he continues to keep his booth in the desert otherworld so hot special microphones needed to be made in order to tolerate it.
Kevin's morning routine consists of: waking up, rising from the flaying pouch, finding his various teeth scattered around the house, eating breakfast and burying whatever's left, and practicing smiling in front of the bathroom mirror.
Occasionally, Kevin shows signs of having been traumatized by StexCorp. He states the company used "ethically brutal methods that left [him] forever physically changed." He says that every morning he watches his reflection in the mirror sit on the side of the bathtub "muttering about the life he used to have before Strex got ahold of him" and that he "rarely feels anything at all" aside from delirious happiness. He states that he actively works to banish unhappy thoughts.
Kevin does not like to be called "Kev" as that's what his father called him. It's implied that his father was abusive, as Kevin tells a story about how his father would pour boiling caramel onto him when he was a child. Kevin compares the sun to a "father dedicated to watching every move his children make, burning hotter at every mistake and gently warming us with each moment of pure thought." His father is described as having hundreds of legs and nesting in the walls of his childhood home, Kevin states that he was so big the entire house would shake when he moved. Kevin used to call his father "Papa."
When he was a teenager he worked as an usher at a movie theater. He states that he loved the smell of popcorn, how hot butter burns the gums and teeth, and the shards of kernels that get stuck in the throat. He states that "movies are fine too." Kevin also worked as a temp at a business he didn't understand. He stated he worked in a glass cube building in the middle of a parking lot and would sit at his desk and stare at his computer for 8 hours doing and understanding nothing. After 2 weeks he was told the project was over and he was let go. When he returned to the parking lot he found the building was gone, so he took off his shoes and pressed his feet into the hot asphalt until he couldn't take it anymore and then a little longer than that. Kevin states this was the first time he really and truly smiled.
StrexCorp takeover of Desert Bluffs
Kevin was the radio host of DBCR before StrexCorp. He stated that he fought back against StrexCorp during their takeover of Desert Bluffs, literally putting himself between the Strex representatives and the entrance to the radio station. At the time, Kevin adamantly denied any support of StrexCorp, describing it as a "faux friendly big business corporate monster" and believing Desert Bluffs would defeat them.
He remembers only bits and pieces of his life pre-Strex, and when asked lists: the feeling of the Earth under his feet, the smell of green plants, a candlestick belonging to either his mother or neighbor, the smell of dish soap on Sunday night, how his hands looked against the backseat window of his father's car, a thousands stars (although some may be the same star remembered twice), a phone number that was either his home number or the vet, his pet cat named Rocky, every single second of his own birth, and a story about an old man who'd never seen the world and how he survived a boat wreck.
Kevin says he misses working for StrexCorp and describes it as one of the better jobs he'd ever had, citing the great benefits, the up-to-date and gory offices, and the visceral work culture.
StrexCorp takeover of Night Vale
At first, Kevin's role was exclusive to voicing pre-recorded, pro-StrexCorp advertisements to be played on NVCR, although he expressed excitement about retuning to Night Vale. After Cecil is removed from NVCR and sent to the company picnic, Kevin takes over as the "Greater Desert Bluffs Metropolitan Area Community Radio" host. During Night Vale's revolt, he and Lauren continued to host the show from a secret location.
During Lauren's battle with Tamika Flynn, Kevin snuck away and returned to NVCR where he tried to convince Cecil and Steve Carlsberg join StrexCorp. He attempted to tempt Steve into joining by stating StrexCorp could "fix" Janice's spina bifida, which angered Steve and led to him throwing Kevin through one of the old oak doors, leaving Kevin stuck in the desert otherworld.
Several months later, Kevin calls Cecil's voicemail, passive-aggressively hinting at his return and revenge.
Kevin lived with Carlos and the masked army in the desert otherworld for ten years (one year equivalent in Night Vale), where they founded what would later become Desert Bluffs Too. Kevin started by building a radio station "for anyone who wants to broadcast or listen to broadcasts." During this time, Carlos described him as "pretty relaxed and friendly."
Citizens of Desert Bluffs who were unhappy with their living situation post-Strex began moving to the desert otherworld and helped build up the community. In a message to Cecil and Carlos during their wedding, Kevin revealed that he was in charge of Desert Bluffs Too despite Lauren being the mayor. The people of Desert Bluffs Too don't like how he utilizes his political power and religious authority.
The Joyous Congregation of the Smiling God
It's unclear when Kevin became a worshipper of the Smiling God. Throughout the podcast Kevin insists it was StrexCorp who introduced him to the Smiling God. However, in It Devours! Pastor Munn and Stephanie identify Kevin as the church's founding prophet and the one who brought knowledge of the Smiling God to Desert Bluffs.
Regardless, Kevin is considered a prophet for the church, and is said to have written many of the religious texts concerning the Smiling God, one of which is around 40 years old. He claims to receive visions from the Smiling God.
An excerpt from one of these texts:
“Wow. What a perfectly wonderful, wonderfully perfect super day! I could not be more thrilled. The Smiling God blessed me with Its presence once again. I felt the sand beneath me quake, and Its Maw rose from deep within and greeted me. And I said, ‘Hey, I’m Kevin. How’s it going there?’ And It nearly swallowed me, which was a huge honor. ‘Big fan,’ I shouted as Its unbearable bulk blocked out all light around me, until it was just me, in the night It had created with Its movement, grinning up at Its darkness. Super inspiring and nice.” Next to this was a smiley face, and a strange symbol. Some sort of geometric design. Had Kevin been doodling in the holy text he had been writing?
The same strange geometric design was drawn across the top, along with some exclamation points and the phrase “Smiling God” in a cartoon heart. “Boy, life sure is great,” the text said. “I’ve figured out how to tell where the Smiling God will appear next. When It gets hungry, It begins to hunt. And It does these sweeps outward and outward. Always the same way, so I can wait just ahead of It and get a big ol’ eyeful of Its nightmare body. Nifty as all get-out!”
- Night Vale: Kevin claims to cherish only the warmest feelings toward Night Vale. He seems surprised and pleased to learn that people from Night Vale even know about his little radio station. He doesn't seem to share Cecil's sense of an obsessive sports team rivalry between the two towns. When he learns he's been transported into Night Vale, he cries, "How delightful!"
- Steve Carlsberg: Kevin interprets Steve's government conspiracy theory as a resounding endorsement of the free market. However, he later meets up with Steve again and claims StrexCorp could "fix" Janice's spina bifida, which angered Steve and led to him throwing Kevin through one of the old oak doors, leaving Kevin stuck in the desert otherworld.
- Cecil Palmer: Kevin is very sweet and friendly toward Cecil. He claims they hugged and "shared a moment" while passing through the vortex. He built a radio station in the desert otherworld for he and Cecil to share. Pre-Strex Kevin and Cecil bond over their mutual love of cats as well as their mutual distaste for Strexcorp.
- Intern Vanessa: Despite Vanessa working on the day of the sandstorm, and Kevin's repeated mentions of her current employment, Kevin says Vanessa died "many years ago" and that he's still "very upset about it."
- Lauren Mallard: Kevin and Lauren are superficially friendly and cooperative with each other. Laruen was Kevin's boss when they lived in Desert Bluffs, however Kevin claims to be in charge of her in Desert Bluffs Too. This is seemingly confirmed by her doing what Kevin says despite the citizens being opposed.
- Kevin's StrexPet: He claims to love it, but throws sticks at it and has trained it to eat mice, something StrexPets are not supposed to do. It's not clear if this is an attempt at sabotage or simply sadism.
- Carlos: Kevin is friendly towards Carlos, finding him handsome and pushing him to continue his workaholic nature. Kevin becomes upset when Carlos decides to leave the desert otherworld, stating it makes him sad.
- Charles: Kevin is very passionate about Charles, talking about him in a way that mirrors Cecil describing Carlos during Episode 1. However, Kevin is considerably more forward than Cecil was, stating they went on their first date soon after Charles moved to Desert Bluffs Too. After learning that Charles has a son, Donovan, Kevin became hesitant about the relationship. Kevin embraces Donovan's existence following the events of Mudstone Abyss.
Relationships without specific emotional ties:
- Kevin's other Desert Bluffs coworkers include the staff weatherman, Ted.
- Kevin mentions having had a grandmother who embroidered pillows with the phrase "REACH YOUR FULL PRODUCTIVE POTENTIAL." "I loved those pillows so much, she sold one to me!" he recalls.
- He played Happy in his high school play of Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman.
- Episode 19B "The Sandstorm (Part B)"
- Patreon: Oct 3, 2019 Listener Questions 6
- Episode 19A "The Sandstorm (Part A)"
- Episode 49B "Old Oak Doors Part B"
- Live Episode "The Debate"
- Patreon: July 3, 2018 Listener Questions 3
- Episode 46 "Parade Day"
- Episode 68 Faceless Old Women
- Episode 48 "Renovations"
- Episode 73 "Triptych"
- Fink, Joseph; Cranor, Jeffrey. It Devours! (Welcome to Night Vale). HarperCollins.
- Episode 78 Cooking Stuff: Thanksgiving Special
- Episode 47 "Company Picnic"
- Episode 70A Taking Flight
- Episode 120 "All Smiles' Eve"
- Patreon: Feb 10, 2021 Listener Questions 9
- Episode 135 "The Mudstone Abyss Part 1"
- Episode 137 "The Mudstone Abyss Part 3"
- Episode 43 Visitor
- Episode 49A "Old Oak Doors Part A"
- Episode 65 Voicemail
- Episode 90 "Who's a Good Boy? Part 2"
- Episode 100 Toast
- Episode 136 "The Mudstone Abyss Part 2"