Characters: Persona 4: The Investigation Team
The main characters of Persona 4
For the full list of characters from the game, click here
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The Entire Team
- Amateur Sleuths: Every member of the team save for Naoto, who's actually a Kid Detective.
- Acquired Poison Immunity: Variation. The Fog inside the TV world isn't toxic, but it can make a person rather tired, even ill, after a while. Because of their frequent forays into that World, every member of the team eventually develops a resistance to the stuff (their personas and "Teddie Glasses" also give them a bit of protection). When the Fog starts to leak into the real world late in the game, they're the only people in town who are largely unaffected by it.
- Badass Biker: All of them as of Golden, except Kanji and Teddie, who have to use a regular bike and roller skates respectively. Arguably parodied since the ones with motorized vehicles are on scooters.
- Kanji also counts though since he can keep up with them on his regular bike.
- Badass Crew
- Badass in a Nice Suit: You can buy this in-game at the new Okina City where everyone (except Rise) gets one complete with Cool Shades.
- Beauty, Brains and Brawn: Rise/Yukiko (both have beautiful feminine looks and are extremely popular with males), Naoto (a professional detective who frequently serves as Ms. Exposition) and Chie (a tomboy who is skilled at kung-fu) respectively.
- Berserk Button: Anyone outside the group messing with them or anyone they care for.
- Big Damn Heroes: In the story, it's a given that they're this as they make it a point to rescue whoever has been thrown into the Midnight Channel. This seeps into the gameplay in the Golden with the Cavalry Attacks which have teammates that aren't even in your party charge in on their bikes (or skates) to help out if their Social Links are high enough.
- Bootstrapped Leitmotif: The game's main battle theme, "Reach Out To The Truth" has become synonymous with them (particularly The Hero), to the point that the anime uses it as their Theme Music Power-Up.
- Break the Cutie/"The Reason You Suck" Speech: Any of them who were kidnapped suffer this at the hands of their Shadow. They get over it quickly though.
- Color-Coded Characters: Gray for the Protagonist, orange for Yosuke, green for Chie, red for Yukiko, purple for Kanji, pink for Rise, yellow for Teddie, and blue for Naoto.
- Combination Attack: Golden introduces this mechanic. If two specific party members are in the team, they have a chance of performing an attack to hit all enemies after an All-Out Attack.
- Curtains Match The Windows: All of them sans Teddie. Kanji appears to avert this, but that's because he bleaches his hair.
- Dance Battler: They fight Shadows using dance moves in Persona 4: Dancing All Night.
- Dare to Be Badass: Despite being ordinary high-school kids, none of them backs down for even a second at the prospect of wandering around in some Dark World fighting creepy monsters, all in hopes of thwarting the efforts of some kind of Serial Killer.
- Deconstructed Trope: Each member of the team deconstructs at least one trope as part of their characterization or personal story arc during the game. Completing their social link usually reconstructs it.
- Yosuke deconstructs the Stepford Smiler and/or Sad Clown tropes, as his Shadow calls him on the fact he's basically just bored and aimless and so he's throwing himself into anything that seems interesting for the hell of having something to do.
- Chie deconstructs the Tomboy trope, as it's made clear from encountering her Shadow that she is quite uncomfortable with her lack of femininity. She also mildly deconstructs the Big Eater trope, as she mentions that her ravenous appetite is one of the things she finds unfeminine about herself and is thusly ashamed of.
- Yukiko deconstructs the Yamato Nadeshiko trope, as it's noted she feels powerless and weak, as well as not truly wanting to accept her expected inheritance.
- Kanji deconstructs the Real Men Wear Pink trope, as his personal storyline is all about how his "unmacho" interests have led to ridicule and rejection from others, especially women, and how he doubts himself as a result of that.
- Rise deconstructs the Idol Singer and Kawaiiko tropes, having originally gone into the music business because of a love of singing and a desire to make friends, only to grow fearful of the idea that people only see her for her idol persona.
- Naoto deconstructs the Kid Detective (nobody takes her seriously due to her age, so she has to fight to be recognized) and Bifauxnen (she only dresses like and pretends to be a guy because it's the only way she can get around the chauvinism of the Japanese police system) tropes.
- Elemental Powers:
- Shock and Awe: Yu's initial Persona, Izanagi, and Kanji's Persona Take-Mikazuchi. In their case, Izanagi will usually be dropped early on, and Kanji's magic stat is too low to use Zio spells outside of weakness exploitation.
- Blow You Away: Yosuke's Persona Jiraya.
- An Ice Person: Teddie's Persona Kintoki-Douji. Chie's Persona, Tomoe Gozen, like Kanji, specializes in physical attacks, and only learns up to the Bufula level of ice spells.
- Playing with Fire: Yukiko's Persona, Konohana-Sakuya.
- Light 'em Up and Casting a Shadow: Naoto's Persona, Sukuna-Hikona. In the Golden rerelease, this is balanced out with more regular elemental spells, due to the unreliability of Hama and Mudo skills in general.
- Eleventh Hour Superpower: Golden adds tier 3 personas that unlock if you hang out with one of your party members after the December dungeon, and if you maxed out their social links.
- Enlightenment Superpowers: Accept your most noticeable flaws? Have a Persona. Work your way through more of your flaws? Your Persona takes on a stronger form. Come to the realization that you can still change and improve from there? The Persona's power increases even further.
- Fairytale Motifs: Each character's Persona is derived from Shinto folklore.
- Fire-Forged Friends: It helps that part of their Character Development, both as individuals and as a team, includes learning each other's deepest shames and accepting themselves and each other for who they are.
- The Fool: Embodies, as a group and Yu in particular, the Fool Tarot card and the trope.
- Hypocritical Humor: All of them (except Teddie) think that dressing up as the Neo Featherman Phoenix Rangers is a rather silly, if not stupid, thing to do; some even claim not to be all too familiar with the franchise because it's for kids. However, winning a battle while these costumes are equipped reveals that not only are they aware of each of the Phoenix Rangers' code names, but their trademark poses as well.
- I Just Want to Have Friends: The underlying plight of a majority of the team; they fear loneliness and have a strong desire to be "accepted" in one form or another. Chie and Yukiko are the only exceptions as they've been friends since they were children.
- Instant Cosplay Surprise: All of the characters get elements of this in The Golden. The most hilarious ones are when you dress the male members in just a bath towel. Yosuke even states that he hates you. It also makes you wonder how you managed to convince them to put on those (sometimes embarrassing) costumes.
- It's Personal: Everyone on the team is either a victim or the friend of a victim, giving them all a personal reason to hunt the killer down. And then Nanako gets kidnapped.
- Morphic Resonance: Unlike Personae of SEES which are more like the stylized interpretation of their mythologies, the Investigation Team's Personae are closer to their owners and/or their owner's Shadow Selves. Even as they evolve, their keep the same basic template they taken from their users as their previous formnote .
- The Power of Friendship: Plays a major role in plot and gameplay. The main character gets his strength from this.
- Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: The team consists of a New Transfer Student, the Class Clown, an Action Girl, a Yamato Nadeshiko, a Bruiser with a Soft Center, an Idol Singer, the Team Pet, and a Bifauxnen Kid Detective; everyone except for the Team Pet is in high school.
- Ramming Always Works: Half of their Cavalry Attacks involve this with Chie's being the most powerful.
- Reconstruction: Thanks to the Midnight Channel, the entire investigation team is painfully aware of the various flaws in their character types. Much of their S-Links are spent accepting and overcoming these flaws.
- Sempai Kohai: Along with Kou, Daisuke, Ai, and Yumi, the Class 2-2 quartet are Kohai to Saki Konishi and Sempai (spelled and pronounced "Senpai" in-game) to Kanji, Rise, Ayane, Naoki, and Naoto.
- Sentai: Just for fun, Persona 4 Golden allows you to buy Phoenix Ranger Featherman R◊ costumes to wear for dungeon crawling; party members will even strike a pose after winning a fight!
- The Protagonist/Yu Narukami: Feather Hawk (Rednote )
- Yosuke: Feather Owl (Yellow)
- Chie: Feather Parakeet (Green)
- Yukiko: Feather Asasnote (Pink)
- Kanji: Feather Falcon (Black)
- Naoto: Feather Swan (Blue)
- Teddie: Feather Horned Owl (Silver/White)
- Shut Up, Hannibal!:
- Doing this is generally what causes their Shadow to attack them, actually.
- Everyone gets their moment during the final confrontation with the True Killer.
- Smart Ball: All of the characters have their own ways of thinking which help shine light on different aspects of the case.
- Yu is calm, levelheaded, and decisive. This is important to achieve the True Ending.
- Youske has good deductive reasoning and a knack for planning and strategy, if he's a little impulsive. Unfortunately this leads the team to focus on some red herrings.
- Chie is good at sniffing out rumors, gossip, etc., and occasionally hits a bull's eye with her wild theories.
- Yukiko has a non-linear thinking style that allows her to look at things from different angles. Problem is she doesn't put the pieces together until much later.
- Kanji can be surprisingly insightful at times, and is often the one who keeps the group focused on what they can control instead of what they cannot. His Hot-Blooded-ness can be distracting, though.
- Teddie knows the ins and outs of the TV world, and how Shadows behave.
- Rise is the most socially sensitive of the group, giving her great insight into people's feelings and their behavior.
- And Naoto, being an actual detective, is perceptive, well-read, and great at logical reasoning. However, she has a problem of consistently not sharing her ideas with the rest of the gang.
- Specs of Awesome: Get these once they join the team. Wear them, and it's as if the supernatural fog in either world isn't there at all. Averted by Teddie, their creator, whose eyes are themselves lenses.
- Storm of Blades: The second phase of Yosuke and Teddie's Junes Bomber attack.
- Taking the Bullet: Any character with a sufficiently high social link will do this in battle. During the final boss fight all of your party members will do this to protect Yu from its instant death attack. It doesn't work.
- Those Two Guys: Why spend Christmas, vacations or Valentine's Day with your girlfriend or the fairer members of the cast when you can hang out with the fellas?
- Took a Level in Badass: They transform from a bunch of ordinary teenagers (some of whom are celebrities) with deep-seated psychological issues to an effective fighting team with supernatural powers, that not only solves a murder case, catches the killer, but also take on a god-like being (and win). Also, when their Personas evolve.
- True Companions: By the end of the game, the group essentially becomes a family.
- The True Ending implies that the protagonists have risen above ordinary humans in that they now have the ability to use and control their Personae (the masks that humans wear to deal with various ordeals and stimuli). If the Midnight Channel, the fog, and Izanami herself are indeed the Anthropomorphic Personifications of the human subconscious, then the protagonists have proven their egos to be more powerful than all of humanity's combined emptiness and strong enough to completely sweep away the delusions clouding the human subconscious.
- Deconstructed in Persona 4 Arena. The Malevolent Entity states that this is only temporary, and Personae have the ability to turn back into shadows at any time. All it takes is one Despair Event Horizon. The Entity's goal is to see this happen for reasons that are, as of yet, unrevealed.
- Unbelievable Source Plot/You Wouldn't Believe Me If I Told You: Pretty much the reason they can't tell anyone about their after-school activities.
- Unwitting Pawn: To Adachi. By saving people, they unintentionally reinforced Namatame's delusions which lead to more people getting kidnapped.
- Victory Is Boring: Whenever the case looks resolved, the team becomes melancholic that their adventures are over, and that they'll have to go back to their normal lives. After Nanako seemingly perishes, this attitude is dropped and they're nothing short of relieved when they finally solve the mystery once and for all.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Save for Yukiko, Naoto, and the Protagonist (depending on how you play him), they love to tease, annoy, and bicker with each other.
- Yukiko, while better than most, is still Not so Above It All and will join in on the teasing. Mostly in regards to Yosuke, and later Kanji.
- Vocal Evolution: Keys into the Investigation Team's Character Development.
- Wake Up, Go to School, Save the World: In between school and hanging out, they solve a double homicide and multiple kidnappings over the course of slightly less than a year.
- You Meddling Kids: They truly are the bane of the main villain.
The Protagonist/Yu Narukami
The Protagonist / Yu Narukami / Souji Seta
The silent protagonist who can be named by the player at the beginning
. His affinity is with the Fool Arcana, which gives him the ability to call forth multiple Personas, starting with Izanagi. He uses primarily two-handed weapons, including long swords
, baseball bats
and golf clubs
as weapons, has exclusive access to the Velvet Room, and occasionally encounters Oracle Cards in his mind that give him new Personas and also grants an Arcana Chance. He summons his Persona by crushing the card with his bare hand. The manga gave him the name Souji Seta, whereas the anime and the fighting game name him Yu Narukami, making this his Canon Name
simply refers to him as "Hero" when it names the cast in the opening.
His parents moved a lot from town to town, forcing him to constantly change schools. Then, due to his parents having to work overseas, he has to move to the rural town of Inaba to stay with his uncle, police officer Ryotaro Dojima, and his six-year-old daughter Nanako. In his new school, he quickly made friends with class clown Yosuke Hanamura and kung-fu fangirl Chie Satonaka. Soon enough he learns about the 'Midnight Channel' and discovers his ability to insert his body to the television. This leads him into a quest to uncover the truth behind a series of inexplicable murders, in the process gaining a lot of friends and, when he has to leave Inaba a year later, lots of fond memories from an otherwise forgettable town. In the True Ending, his ultimate Persona is revealed to be Izanagi-no-Okami.
He's one of the Investigation Team's three founding members (along with Yosuke and Chie) and its de facto
leader (unlike the protagonist of Persona 3
, who is basically assigned the role and then left there). He sets the pace for the investigation, handles finances, and enacts all major decisions before the rest of the Team can act on them; he also leads the forays into the Midnight Channel and commands the group in battle. Because of this, the team never enters the Channel unless he is present (unless the course of action being taken requires searching both worlds, in which case they still never go further than the entrance).
- The Ace: If you max out all his stats (knowledge, understanding, expression, diligence, and courage). The trophy for doing so in The Golden is even called "Mr. Perfect", to the point Yosuke asks how perfect you are if you win the Midnight Channel Miracle Quiz finals.
- Becomes canon from the anime forward, where Yu is portrayed as talented in practically everything he tries with little effort.
- All-Loving Hero: He makes friends with all sorts of people pretty easily, regardless of their age or gender, and he even befriends dogs, cats, and a fox. Hell, he even has relationships with Physical Gods!!
- Almost Kiss: An optional scene in Golden has this happen between him and Teddie.
- Amazon Chaser: Potentially. He can romance Chie Satonaka, Yukiko Amagi,and Naoto Shirogane, all of whom take right to the field and crack Shadow skulls alongside him. It's marginal with Yukiko (the most feminine of the three), zigzags a little in Naoto's romance (Naoto's romance has some pretty heavy-handed "coax her to act more feminine" options), but is played totally straight with Chie; the player can even admit to finding her appetite attractive.
- Ambiguous Disorder: In the anime, Yu is a bit...odd, though most of his antics can be chalked up as "Rule of Funny" more than anything else.
- Ambiguously Bi: While the games provide no Gay Option, you're given several opportunities to have Yu express interest in the guys in the group.
- In Golden he can ask a middle aged officer for his number, which makes the officer anxious.
- Angel Unaware: He's how the Shrine actually grants the wishes posted on its emas. Even though he's not subtle about how he aids them, the people he helps still believe that the Shrine was the chief cause of the solution, which isn't too far from the truth.
- Attractive Bent-Gender: He's no Teddie, but he can rock a skirt and sailor suit better than anyone else.
- In the anime, Chie, Yukiko and Rise all blush at the sight of him.
- Badass: He can reprimand Morooka with "You calling me a loser?", summons Persona not by attacking his card with his Weapon of Choice, but by crushing it with his hands. Exaggerated in the anime: Yu basically takes out the bosses singlehandedly. It's gotten to the point where some Imageboards joke that he's obviously on a New Game+.
- Battle Aura: Deserves special mention; his Battle Aura is several times larger than those of the rest of the Investigation Team.
- Battle Couple: With any female party member, if romanced. But it best comes across with Chie in her Social Link.
- Beneath Suspicion: Dojima's instincts catch onto you and the investigation team almost immediately, but he can't bring himself to suspect the person who watches over his daughter.
- Berserk Button: In the entire compilation, Yu's only real weak spot is his Big Brother Instinct towards Nanako. While he does have other buttons, threatening his surrogate little sister is the only guaranteed way to make him lose his composure.
- A good example from the anime is when Mitsuo tried to do... something... to Nanako when she bumped into him at the grocery store, only to be scared away when Yu jumped to her defense with a rather uncharacteristic "Back off or I will hurt you." expression.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Yu makes many friends in the one year he's in Inaba. He can't help but help people in need, even if they are strangers. He has the patience of a Buddha, considering all the menial, degrading work and humiliating situations that you can put him through in the game. With all that said, he has an entire pantheon of gods at his disposal, and if you make the mistake of pissing him off...
- Big Brother Instinct: Towards Nanako, to the point where he is the trope God.
- Big Brother Mentor: The Protagonist adopts this role with several of his Social Link contacts, notably Kanji and Teddie, and to a lesser extent Shu Nakajima and Naoki Konishi.note
- Big Eater: In the anime, Yu apparently likes to order the The Meat Lover's Combo. In the games, Yu can also potentially be this, as maxing out all stats allows him to singlehandedly finish off the Rainy Day Special at Aiya, a dish so insanely huge that pretty much nobody in town can eat it.
- Bishōnen: After Teddie he's easily the prettiest of the guys.
- Blithe Spirit: His actions can help transform Inaba from a Crapsaccharine World to a much more pleasant Quirky Town.
- But Now I Must Go: He's only in Inaba for the year, while his parents are working abroad.
- Butt Monkey: Not so much during the "investigation" and "fighting" parts of things (He is a bona fide Badass after all), but sometimes during the "everyday life" elements of the game. For example, near the beginning of the game he gets hauled in by the cops because Yosuke thought waving swords around in a public place sounded like a good idea. (Note that Yu was just sitting there.)
- The anime and Golden seem to have decided that he suffers alongside the other guys of the Investigation Team but significantly less so, such as when he, Yosuke and Kanji attempt and fail to do a crowd surf. Kanji and Yosuke fall flat on their faces while he not only sticks the landing, but proceeds to strike a pose while doing it.
- Subverted in the promotional art for P4 the Ultimax where Yu is on the receiving end of a massive suplex from Aigis, the art being one of the rare occasions where Yu is shown in a completely compromising position.
- Catch Phrase: The phrase "Calm down" appears more often than any other dialogue option (in a similar vein to the Persona 3 Protagonist's "Whatever"), and subsequent media has cemented it as his catchphrase.
- Also: "…"
- The anime turns some of the narration's comments from the game into phrases Narukami says, most nobaly "[Let's/I should/We should] leave him be."
- "Let's leave him be" disappears as a representation of his Character Development. In fact, it's significant enough that when Adachi asks the Investigation Team to "Leave him be" for the shadows to finish him off, instead Yu offers a hand to him to help him up after the team decides to drag him back to reality.
- Canon Name: He has no default name in the game. The manga adaption of P4 gave him "Souji Seta", and Persona 4: The Animation named him Yu Narukami. Due to the popularity of the anime, he is named Yu Narukami in almost every spinoff of the original game — Persona 4 Arena, Persona 4: Dancing All Night, all use it. The only exception so far seems to be Persona Q, where you name him yourself no matter whose route you pick.
- Cassandra Truth: Can tell his uncle, as well as some social links, about what's really going on and what his involvement with the case really is, as well as telling his friends about the Velvet Room. Dojima assumes he's making it all up to hide the truth, in at least one instance with the social link they assume he's speaking of another murder case entirely and assume he's in Inaba for witness protection, and his friends think the Velvet Room is just a ghost story that "almost sounds true" when he says it.
- Celibate Hero/Really Gets Around: The Protagonist can be either one or anything in between.
- Character Development:
- The personality stats return from Persona 3, except there are now five attributes rather than three: Knowledge, Courage, Diligence, Understanding, and Expression. Maxing them out opens up new Social Links and gives you more dialogue choices.
- In the anime, Yu starts off as a quiet, reserved, stoic, somewhat shy and unmotivated individual. He gradually begins to open up, showing a kinder, friendlier, yet slighly perverted, but comedic side to his personality. In fact, he eases up on the poker face, smiling more often and showing more reaction to events around him, and takes more initiative in understanding/dealing with the people around him.
- Chick Magnet: By the end of the game, it's possible for Yukiko, Rise, Chie, Naoto, Ai, Yumi/Ayane, Marie, Margaret, and even Nanako to fall for him, along with Sayoko hitting on him early in her Social Link.
- Recognized in the anime. He's called a gigolo/Man-Whore by Margaret of all people. Nobody argues about this. Case in point. Why does his shirt open itself? Because it must.
- Persona 4 Arena also recognizes this, as Rise may refer to him as the "Legendary Ladies Man of Inaba".
- In Golden though, come Valentine's Day and you will feel like a bastard if you had all the girls as your lovers. You have to turn all of them down one by one, sending them into devastated, crying fits.
- Chivalrous Pervert: In the anime and an option in the game. In both cases, it leans more on the Chivalrous side because the girls rarely act negatively towards his come-ons like they do with Yosuke and Teddie.
- The Chosen One: Of three.
- Chronic Hero Syndrome:
- If you perform the Social Links, it is almost impossible to stop him from helping others.
- Parodied in the anime at first, as Yu doesn't so much agree to help people as get volunteered to at an almost alarming rate by others. Bonus points for the fact that Izanami more or less volunteered him to save Inaba on his first day in town However, later episodes play this straight.
- Combat Stilettos: Izanagi wears a bladed variant of these. They don't get in the way as he's capable of flight, and they're quite useful in cutting enemies in half with a solid kick.
- The Comically Serious:
: [Sweat Drop
] Dude, does anything
- Probably shown best when Yu and Yosuke get knocked into the river for making perverted comments to Yukiko and Chie. Yosuke is laughing and flailing about, while Yu is completely flat faced and falls like a rock.
- Cool Big Bro: Pretty much every social link with someone who's not older than you, and one you're not romantically interested in.
- Cool Old Guy: Get turned into an old man briefly in Naoto's dungeon in the anime. Rise leads the other girls in squeeing over him anyway.
- Cool Shades: He can make a simple glasses into one. Just look at the page cover.
- Covert Pervert: Some of his text options are pretty perverted. In the anime, his response to Shadow Yukiko talking about scoring a hot stud is to remark to Yosuke (coolly) that he wished he had taped it. As of Episode 7, he did start recording it. It's become something of a Running Gag that Yu and Yosuke will say something equally perverted, but only Yosuke will get hit for it. Chie even says at one point that the girls don't find it creepy when it's Yu whose doing it, but it is when the other guys are acting perverted.
- Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Multiple times. And he didn't even break an arm.
- Deadpan Snarker: Emphasis on Deadpan. Narukami has a dry sense of humor and a very strange one at that. When he's not being snarky he's known for acting like a Cloudcuckoolander because he finds it funny. This coupled with his Poker Face, makes it hard to tell if he's kidding or not. To provide examples:
(Yu sticks his hand onto the TV, only for Teddie to bite it.)
Yu: Something bit me.
Chie It left marks! Are you alright?!
Chie: No you're not.
Episode 6 Dojima gives Yu a rather gaudy pink swimsuit◊
for children's day, which Yu describes as being "Very fashionable" in a monotone voice. Episode 8; turns out he brought it with him for the camping trip and acts as if it's trendy.
- Earn Your Happy Ending: "Earn Your Bittersweet Ending" is probably more accurate but he earned a happy ending in a Shin Megami Tensei game. [[spoiler: Golden has a sweeter ending.
- Eleventh Hour Super Power: You gain access to Izanagi-no-Okami in the True Ending's last battle.
- Extreme Omnivore: You have the option of eating anything you find in the fridge, regardless of how inedible it is (at one point you can even eat a pot of grass.) He does get sick a few times, though.
- Face-Heel Turn: Adachi's S-Links in The Golden can make the Protagonist relate with him so much to the point of not exposing his crimes, leaving the town on schedule, invoking the Accomplice End.
- Female Gaze:
- In the anime, after he summons Izanagi for the first time. The camera pans down his chest as he opens his jacket so he can breathe better.
- Episode 15, right before the King's Game starts and as it progresses. Yeah...he's pretty ripped.
- First Kiss: Margaret steals his in a moment of Genre Blindness to romance. Unless you date anyone else beforehand. In the anime, he gets his first kiss from Ai instead. In Golden, when it's at Valentines Day, it's Marie.
- Foil: The respective movie/anime adaptations of Persona 3 and 4 did this to Makoto and Yu. Makoto scoffs the very idea of forming an attachment to others and will leave people to their own devices, even if that means that they will very likely die(at least initially). Yu on the other hand cherishes his bonds with others, and will go out of his way for people he barely even knows. A big part of Makoto's character development is learning to put his trust in others, as well as accepting others into his heart. Yu's development is that he has to overcome his fear of being alone, as well as learning that a strong bond won't break just because the people he loves aren't actively around him.
- The Fool: His initial Arcana.
- Friendless Background: Heavily implied in the anime, and this may actually explain his odd antics.
- Get a Hold of Yourself, Man!:
- Does this to Yosuke in the manga and the anime when he meets his Shadow. He decks Yosuke in sync with Izanagi as it lands a good punch to Yosuke's Shadow. Then made hilarious by Yu's response:
Yu: (completely deadpan) Oops, wrong guy.
- Also, in the Normal/True Ending, he shouts down the entire team to calm down and make them reconsider avenging Nanako on Namatame, realizing something is off with the situation.
- Episode 26 of the anime has this happens to Yu himself, by Maragaret, in order to snap him out of his Heroic BSOD.
- The Glasses Come Off: He throws away his glasses when he summons Izanagi-No-Okami to punch out Cthulhu. It's epic.
- Good People Have Good Sex: Like in Persona 3, you are given the opportunity to sleep with almost any of the girls' whose Social Links you've completed. The scenes are not given explicit detail since this isn't an eroge, but it's heavily implied that Yu is incredibly loving and gentle in bed.
- Go Through Me: Toward the end of Naoto's social link the man the two had been tracking pulls a knife on her and you have the option to defend her, which has him run between the two. While this action is necessary to pursue her romantic social link ending, it's ultimately a pointless gesture as the knife was one of the stolen items, wasn't even a real knife, and was going to be returned to her.
- Good Is Not Nice: As Ayane points out, he can be pretty mean for a nice guy.
- Grandpa What Massive Hotness You Have/ Silver Fox: In the anime, after being aged into an old man by Shadow Naoto, Rise gushes about how he still looks good.
- Guile Hero: Saves almost everyone around him with words and simple emotional guidance.
- Hates Being Alone: This is Yu's secret weakness in the anime. He apparently was an unwilling loner before coming to Inaba, and it's implied that he has abandonment issues.
- The Heart: Yu is the emotional and mental center of the Investigation Team, which is part of the reason that he's their de-facto leader. He also has an affinity for forming emotional bonds with others and helping them overcome troubles.
- Heart Is an Awesome Power: When the quality of your relationships actually power your Personas to fight against the Shadows, of course this trope applies.
- Hello, Insert Name Here: While the manga and anime give him a name, the initial game does not. In fact, The Golden simply refers to him as "Hero" when it lists everyone's names.
- Henpecked Boyfriend: In Episode 5 of the anime, he plays the reluctant rebound-boyfriend for Ai. He's totally whipped. He can come off this way, depending on player choices, when forging Ai's Social Link in the game too.
- The Hero: As the star of the storyline, it's not surprising.
- Heroic BSOD:
- Happens in Episode 12 of the anime, Yu is hit by a Lotus-Eater Machine set by Shadow Mitsuo in the form of experiencing his worst nightmare. All of his friends in the Investigation Team leaving his life gradually, Yosuke being the last to leave and ending with Shadow Mitsuo appearing in his room as Yu fails to summon any Personas as his Social Links have all broken. Shadow Mitsuo grows to a large size and begins strangling Yu to death. He snaps out of it by Yosuke bailing him out.
- It happens again in episode 21, when Nanako is kidnapped. When they find Namatame's truck, with both Namatame and Nanako gone, he completely snaps, to the point that Teddie has to physically restrain him as he attempts to dive into the TV to follow them (it was established earlier in both the game and the anime that entering any TV other than the one in Junes is extremely risky, and potentially too dangerous to attempt). Rise is able to talk him out of it.
- Episode 26, the True End episode of the anime, shows Yu exhibiting quite possibly the ultimate example of this: after seeing all of his Investigation Team friends dragged down to their deaths by Izanami, he becomes so broken that he forcibly—albeit unwittingly—traps himself in a Groundhog Day Loop of the day before he is meant to leave Inaba, just to he can spend more time with his friends. It takes getting slapped in the face by Margaret AND facing his Shadow to make him come to his senses and finally beat Izanami.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Yosuke, as well as Teddie & Kanji to a lesser extent. It's especially notable with Yosuke, who repeatedly refers to him as "Partner" throughout the course of the game, and Arena canonises/establishes that Yu refers to Yosuke in the same way.
- Hot-Blooded: He's mostly stoic and calm in conversation but loosens up a bit during fights; shouting and throwing out the occasional swear word.
- Dojima believes that Yu inherited this quality from his mother.
- Hyperspace Arsenal: The other characters have easily concealed weapons, with exception to Kanji who could hide some of his weapons in shopping bags but not all of them (i.e. a desk). He doesn't and he carries all of the Shadow parts and useful things you find. The most common suggestion is that the Velvet Room has something to do with that.
- I Just Want to Have Friends: This gets more attention in the anime than the game. The Tanabata tree's options are half this, either expressing a desire to be able to spend more time with Nanako or to have a girlfriend.
- In the anime. Yu's biggest fear is that after the investigation is over, the group will go their separate ways and he'll be by himself again. Mitsuo's shadow exploits this fear and causes him to have a tremendous Heroic BSOD. It's possible that Yu has not had any lasting friendships before now, which would explain his Sugar and Ice personality.
- Episode 26 (the True End episode) has Yu finally face his own Shadow, who says that he doesn't even care if the world is lost in fog as long as it meant he did not have to go back to a life without any friends. Yu freely admits this as the truth.
- Idiot Hero: Depending on the player's choices, Yu can fail to get any smarter over the year or meaningfully contribute to the mental aspects of cracking the case, leaving his friends to pick up the slack. He can even be less helpful in solving the mystery than KANJI.
- Implacable Man: Rise finds this out about him in episode 9. He can't be bargained with. He can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever..... until he gives you back your cell phone that you dropped.
- Improbable Weapon User: He can be equipped with a variety of unorthodox weapons, including shovels, mops and flags.
- In-Series Nickname: Yosuke calls him "Partner", Teddie calls him "Sensei", Nanako calls him "Big Bro", etc; in fact, most of the important characters have a different nickname for him, to avoid calling him by whatever name you gave him.
- Last Name Basis: In the anime, most people address him by his last name when they're not using a nickname. Though Yosuke eventually switches to First Name Basis, while flirty Rise always addresses him as such.
- Japanese Delinquents: Became one as of Arena, which described him as a "steel siscon banchou". Izanagi's design deliberately invokes this kind of look, and his outfit for the cross-dressing pageant, specifically the seifuku with the long skirt and wooden sword, does so as well. In the anime, Yu even briefly plays the part during his bit in the pageant.
- Jerkass: Most of the dialogue trees in the game have at least one "asshole" option. However, the game discourages you from choosing these, as by doing so, it causes your friends to lose their trust in you, resulting in broken Social Links which leads to depowering your character's Persona growth potential. Dialogue choices tend to push him more into Deadpan Snarker and Obfuscating Stupidity territory. This becomes even more apparent during his Heroic BSOD-induced Groundhog Day Loop in the True End episode of the Anime, where he force-feeds Yosuke a spoonful of Yukiko and Chie's horrible food, and then later suggests they add mustard, whole-cut watermelon (with rind!), pudding cups, and GELATIN into the mix.
- Karma Houdini: Like the Persona 3 protagonist, it's possible to become romantically involved with about half a dozen girls all at once, with little to no hints that they know about each other, with zero consequence. This includes best friends Yukiko and Chie - there's even awkward conversation, when they realize they've both been in his room. UNLIKE the Persona 3 hero, it's not necessary to date them to get the max Social Link, so it's entirely up to the player if they want to have their cake and uh...eat it too. However, in Golden, you will be severely punished for it, not in any serious, gameplay affecting way, but the game will make the average player feel like a major asshole.
- Katanas Are Just Better: His iconic weapon has to be the katana; it's the first weapon he's shown wielding in the gamenote , it's the first weapon he can buy from the weapon's shop, and it's his weapon of choice in Persona 4 Arena.
- Kindhearted Cat Lover: Shows signs of this if you follow the various 'Feed the Cat' sidequests. He can spend a whole afternoon doing nothing but petting a cat outside his house.
- In Golden, while hanging out with Kou in the evening, he remarks that the murders are a big shock to a town where the news is usually about a lost cat. One of the responses is asking about the cat's well-being.
- Knight Templar Big Brother: You're given the option to throw Namatame in the television in retribution for Nanako's death. Yu nearly DID do this in the anime, but managed to stop himself. Things will only get worse if you do.
- Large Ham: Yu has his moments in the anime.
- Last Name Basis: In the anime.
- The Leader: He's the unquestioned head of the Investigation Team, deciding upon battle strategies, directing their efforts at investigating, preventing them from blaming the wrong victim and seeking out the true killer...
- Lethal Chef: While Yosuke treats him as a Supreme Chef, especially in comparison to the girls, he can potentially be a lethal one when cooking school lunches, if the player chooses the wrong options. At one point, you have the option to spray cologne on creme caramel.
- Love Freak: Yosuke considers him to be "ridiculously nice".
- Manly Tears: Shortly after Nanako's death and the ruckus with Namatame in the anime.
- Meaningful Name: One reading of Yu Narukami approximately translates as "quiet thunder god". Narukami can also be read as "to become a god", foreshadowing how Yu manifests the World Arcana in the true ending.
- Mr. Fanservice: Episode 15. Aw yeah...
- My God, What Have I Done?: In the Accomplice Ending, finally gets this reaction once he boards the train and gets a message from Adachi, who is the only person to see him off.
- Nerves of Steel: Except when it comes to ghost stories. He gets as freaked out as the rest of the crew.
- New Transfer Student: Apparently becoming a Signature Style for Persona protagonists, which is justifiable, as it's easy to portray a high school kid with no existing friends or acquaintances, thus avoiding potential problems arising from preexisting Social Links. The manga goes further and implies that he (as Souji) changes school almost every year.
- Nice Guy: In almost all canons, he is portrayed to be a very kind and caring individual.
- Not So Stoic: There are plenty of moments where he breaks his stoicism.
- After summoning Izanagi for the first time, he can be seen enjoying a taste of his new power.
- He often shows when he's concerned or surprised about something, rather friendly during conversations with his friends, and there's a distinctively afraid/shocked tone in his voice when he and his friends stumble into Mayumi's Shadow room during the first. episode. He also smiles at least once an episode.
- Played for Laughs in Episode 20, when Nanako asks if he and Teddie are perverts. Both of them go Blue with Shock.
- Yu suffers an emotional breakdown twice over the course of the series. The first time after having doubts of sparing Namatame and the second time when he willing allows himself to get trapped in a "Groundhog Day" Loop in the final episode.
- Off with His Head!: Combined with Your Head A Splode, this is Izanagi's preferred method of dispatching Shadows and does so with either its weapon or bladed footwear.
- Official Love Interest: Rise in the Manga.
- Old-School Chivalry: Usually, the Protagonist is quite a gentleman. Without any prompting from the player, he will almost always walk girls home or offer to protect them (although, sometimes the game allows you play a subversion).
- Omniglot: Based on the books in his room and several of his dialogue choices, he seems to have at least a basic knowledge of Korean, Spanish and French. Given the Tower social link the English used by the English version of the game may be a Translation Convention, as he tutors Shu in it several times, so he's at least conversant in English as well.
- Parental Abandonment: In the game itself, his parents are only mentioned two or three times. However, the manga states that he moves a lot due to their jobs, and implies that his self-reliant nature stems from a lack of their presence in his life (due to always being busy).
- Parody Sue: In the anime, Yu is portrayed as ridiculously talented at practically everything he tries, and is loved by everyone around him making him a perfect contrast to Yosuke. This gets carried over in both Arena and Golden, where Yu's perfection continues to get played for laughs.
- Perpetual Frowner: His bangs and Izanagi's mask were designed to make the two appear as if they were always giving off a half-glare.
- Precision F-Strike: While he can curse several times throughout the story, one line in particular gets special mention because this is the one time he loses his temper and yells for the first and only time in the entire game… all to make the party reconsider killing Namatame.
"Calm the hell down!"
- They drop this line in the anime because, Yu having a lot more characterization than his game counterpart, it wouldn't have had as much "Omph!"'. So instead, he delivers this in response to the True Killer's Hannibal Lecture in Ep.25:
Yu: I've had enough of your Bullshit!note
- Promotion to Parent: His relationship with Nanako, due to the constant absence of her own father from her life.
- Punny Name: "Yu Narukami," his name in The Animation and The Ultimate in Mayonaka Arena, has caused quite a few bad puns among the English fandom involving the pronoun "You."
- The Quiet One: In the manga where he is allowed to talk, he (as Souji) is still awfully quiet, only speaking at crucial moments and when he's the one initiating a conversation; it creates quite a parallel to his Silent Protagonist role in the game. In the anime he — as Yu — is portrayed as a calm, composed, and soft-spoken individual.
- Rated M for Manly: Izanagi's appearance was pointedly made to be as manly as possible.
- The Protagonist himself is intended to come off as incredibly manly as well, to contrast the willowy Protagonist of the previous game.
- Real Men Wear Pink: The guy's a good cook, is seen taking care of children in one of his jobs while wearing an apron, and tutoring another kid in another job. Another job has him cleaning, while the other three are housework, not to mention how good of an influence he was in raising Nanako. Let's face it — the guy's the ideal House Husband in these regards... and also one hell of a Badass to boot.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Blue to Yosuke's red.
- Scary Shiny Glasses/Slasher Smile: The first time he summons Izanagi is a rare completely heroic example of both. Seen here from episode 1 of the anime.◊
- Sempai: In contrast to Persona 3's protagonist, he's older than most other characters and gets called this.
- The Scrounger: If you complete the sidequests then by the end of the game even his teachers know him as the guy who can get anything you need, no matter how rare.
- Selective Obliviousness: When Yu gets a confession, he'll generally pretend not to realize it happened if he isn't interested, such as with Chie or Yukiko. Of course, Ai assumes she got the same gentle brushoff during her rank 6 event, but during her last social link meeting she decides she has to be direct and make absolutely sure while assuming that she'll be shot down.
- Serious Business: For Yu, everything. It does not matter if it is solving the case, making origami or eating the rainy day special, he treats them all with the same focus and determination.
- Shut Up, Hannibal!: In the anime, Yu is the one to kick of the team's (now legendary) retort to the True Killer.
: I've heard enough; It's all Bullshit
! No matter what you say, you won't get away with this!
And that, Is the TRUTH!
- Silent Protagonist: Averted in his appearances in The Animation and The Ultimate in Mayonaka Arena.
- Stealth Pun/Shout-Out: This must be what the artists of the manga were thinking when they named the Protagonist after Seta Soujiro. That or just coincidence.
- The Stoic:
- He never speaks outside battle and often has the option to tell others to calm down; there are only two points in the game where he has the option to become visibly angry. The eyes of his model are pretty cold too.
- The anime adaptation also depicts him this way. In contrast to the other cast members he (as Narukami) is rarely fazed by extraordinary events, and he almost always keeps a straight face (to the point that it's difficult to tell how serious he is about some of the things he says - see Deadpan Snarker). Taken to absurd levels in the school trip episode, when he has the same serious expression plastered on his face as he's tossed over a cliff by Chie and Yukiko
- Stupid Sexy Flanders: Boy does he look good in that schoolgirl uniform and a wig.
- Superpower Lottery: Let's face it, he's the only character who has access to almost every Persona, and is the only character who is able to defeat Izanami because of his ability to upgrade his own and everyone else's Persona via The Power of Friendship. Even in comparison to his predecessor's Superpower Lotteries, he won it BIG time, and that's saying something.
- Supreme Chef: His friends treat his meals like the best thing they ever ate, he's asked to save the day by Yosuke when the girls are proposing to cook for an event and during this, if the player decides to make the omelette that will please Nanako the best, she's literally blushing with happiness.
- Take a Third Option: Invoked by the Protagonist himself.
- Kill Namatame for revenge, or let him live and hope he'll never kill again.
- Answer: Let him live because of suspicion of him "not" being the killer.
- In The Golden: Let Marie kill herself, or let her live and cause the world to disappear due to the fog inside her.
- Answer: Have the fog turn her into the monster, and kill the monster itself instead of her.
- In a less serious matter, one rainy day finds Yu, Yosuke, Kanji, and Naoto outside with only Yu and Naoto having umbrellas. Yosuke and Kanji debate on who among them should go with who, Yu can opt to instead give the two of them his and go with her.
- Take Over the World: When Nanako sets up a tree for Tanabata, you're given the option to list this as your wish. Dojima's reaction to this is almost worth picking the option.
- Team Mom/Team Dad: Depending on some of your choices he can swing between one or the other.
- Team Chef: Among the Investigation Team members, he is the only one who can put together a good meal as an individual, though this is largely contingent on the player's own cooking skill. Canon in The Animation where Yu is shown to be a pretty good cook.
- Thousand Origami Cranes: He can volunteer to fold origami cranes for charity as a part time job. The anime promotes this trope into his (as Narukami) hobby when killing time. He's pretty good at it too. He made a crane out of a paper napkin, which is harder to fold than regular paper. Episode 9 shows that Origami Cranes is Serious Business for Narukami.
- Interestingly, Yu drops this habit in the second half of the anime.
- Touched by Vorlons: Part of the reason his Superpower Lottery payoff was so large is due to having his powers granted to him by Izanami.
- Tranquil Fury: How he expresses his anger. Particularly in episode 23 when he comes within a hair's breath from tossing Namatame into the TV world (basically a death-sentence) in retaliation for Nanako's apparent death, and without any hint of emotion on his face. It's one of the most chilling scenes in the anime.
- Unwitting Pawn: One of the three people to whom Izanami granted the power to enter the TV. He represents "Hope." Sadly for Izanami, he refuses to accept her gambit and eventually turns his given power on her.
- Visible Silence: There is a whole series of dialogue options which are ellipses (".....") in the early days of the game.
- Warrior Therapist: Because tailing a serial killer (and incidentally saving the world) doesn't mean you can't save time to deal with the psychological issues of your whole team, your family, half your school and if we consider the Fox path, half the town. The therapy is so good he can end up seven-timing and somehow convinces his uncle that since he's so great, he can marry his own cousin. And let's not get started on all the mancrushes he can start.
- What an Idiot: In-Universe, Adachi cracks up at the protagonist in Golden's accomplice ending for actually burning the letters that could get him convicted. Not unjustified, considering his actions throughout the rest of the game. ]]
- What the Hell, Hero?: Inverted; he delivers one to the entire Investigation Team in the Normal/True route — the only time he gets visibly angrynote — when the rest are contemplating killing Namatame.
- Wholesome Crossdresser: When the crossdressing competition occurs, you're given the option to enthusiastically admit that you signed yourself up for it.
- You Bastard: You felt awesome dating all of these lovely ladies at the same time right? Well, since Golden now includes Valentine's day, you have to make one lucky lady very happy and reduce the others to tears. The other FIVE of them.
- Rejected ALL SIX? Yosuke will berate you for hanging out with him, Teddie, and Kanji at Junes.
Yosuke is a second-year student at Yasogami. Because his father is the manager of Junes, the local department store, he is usually treated as an unofficial complaints box, much to his chagrin. He is the Main Character's best friend and is often the butt of his friends' jokes
. Although typically a bit of a Deadpan Snarker
, he has a soft spot for Saki Konishi, a third-year and an employee at Junes, whose murder acts as part of his initial motivation to join the Investigation Team. He dual wields various weapons
and his Persona is Jiraiya of the Magician Arcanum, which later evolves into Susano-O once the Magician Social Link is complete. His Personas cement his role as the party's Red Mage
: Yosuke can use physical attacks and Garu (Wind) magic fairly effectively, and he also has access to support spells that confuse and debuff enemies, augment accuracy and evasion, and provide minor healing.
During a trip to the Midnight Channel and after witnessing the Protagonist's Persona awakening, Yosuke was faced with the horrible truth: Saki has always hated him. When Yosuke refused to admit this, his Shadow emerges and taunts him that he's only being cheerful as a facade and sees everything, including Saki, as a tool to block out his extreme loneliness. Yosuke angrily retorted and it caused the Shadow to reveal its true form, but was eventually defeated by the Protagonist. Encouraged by the Protagonist and Teddie, Yosuke painfully accepts that he did feel that way, but he resolves to get better, which causes the Shadow to turn into his Persona. Yosuke later goes to co-found the Investigation team, along with the Protagonist and Chie.
Yosuke is the team's unspoken second-in-command. He helps coordinate the group alongside the protagonist, and will usually be the one to suggest new courses of action. He has good deductive reasoning (which serves well in the case), but is not the most perceptive of individuals and has a tendency to put his foot in his mouth.
His Shadow looks like him in a ridiculous ninja outfit, with a giant frog making up his lower body. It represents his resentment towards Inaba, his boredom and his wish for excitement. Aside from the reference to the original character Jiraiya, the frog theme is also a word play. In Japanese, "frog" is pronounced the same as "return" which plays in to Yosuke's desire to leave Inaba.
In his Social Link, Yosuke revealed that he initially hated Inaba, but has grown to love it and despite being hated by Saki, he did genuinely love her. He later reveals that he is jealous of the Protagonist and used the murder case to play hero and hide his insecurities. Yosuke later asks the him to punch him to get rid of his jealousy and they end up in a brawl; Yosuke realizes that he can form genuine, close relationships with people regardless of where he is, and resolves to live his life to the fullest. His Persona then evolves into Susano-O. In Golden, his persona can evolve further into Takehaya Susano-O, also acquiring the Youthful Wind skill in the process, which can heal and buff hit/dodge rate simultaneously for the entire party.
- All Love Is Unrequited: Played with — although he crushes on Saki, she secretly hates him. He's aware, though, that she must have disliked him, though he believes she was a good person at heart and decided that he'll still love her anyway.
- Yosuke also (halfheartedly) hits on Yukiko and Rise who both either ignore and reject his affections.
- Attractive Bent-Gender: Subverted. Despite being relatively Bishōnen, Yosuke looks pretty terrible in drag. This is even Lampshaded in universe when one of the crowd members mentions that he thought he'd be able to pull it off better.
- Badass Longcoat: On Takehaya Susano-O.
- Berserk Button: Disrespecting Saki or the Protagonist. Hurting Nanako.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Among all the party members, he was the one most determined to kill Namatame after Nanako's apparent death.
- Blow You Away: Yosuke's specialty is Wind powers.
- Bishōnen: In Design Works, Soejima designed him as a "pretty boy", with lighter build and softer facial features compared to the main character, to make him distinct from Junpei, who looks more masculine than the game's main character.
- Breakout Character: Yosuke stars in his own manga Spin-Off Persona 4: The Magician.
- Bromantic Foil: To the Protagonist.
- Bullying a Dragon: Yosuke does this to Chie in the anime where he often criticizes her at some points. The result is her attacking on him, even on a littlest insult.
- And teasing Kanji about his sexuality. Don't tease people who beat up biker gangs, kids.
- Butt Monkey: And he knows about this, complaining in the anime that nothing good ever happens to him/the guys of the investigation team.
- Calling Your Bathroom Breaks: At completely inopportune times.
- Casanova Wannabe: Has three crushes throughout the game, all of which don't turn out too well — Saki outright hated him (or at least her Shadow did), Yukiko shot him down, and Rise only has eyes for the Protagonist.
- Chivalrous Pervert: When it comes to Rise, at least. When her shadow offers to "bare it all" for her fans, he clearly can't decide whether to be worried or excited.
- Class Clown: Just like Junpei before him. Comes with being a Magician.
- Combat Medic: In the earliest parts of the game, his Persona can use healing and Wind spells. He fills this role until Yukiko comes along. Then he becomes a Jack of All Stats.
- Cool Loser: At the beginning of the game, Yosuke doesn't appear to have any friends outside of Chie and Saki, who is later revealed to have hated him. After making friends with the Protagonist he manages to get a decently sized social circle, but still seems to only really hang out with Kanji and Teddie.
- Deadpan Snarker: He can often get pretty emotional, but still, he pulls off quite a few zingers over the course of the game.
- Demoted to Extra/Flanderization: Yosuke in the anime has much less overall importance than he did in the game, and is much more of a comedic character. This is probably the result of the fact that his role as Exposition Fairy is irrelevant when Narukami can speak for himself.
- He will catch Saki's murderer no matter what.
- He's shown to be a rather diligent and hard worker whenever he's on the job at Junes.
- Dual Wielding: Whether it's knives, kunai, wrenches, or fish, he will always have one in each hand.
- Dude, Where's My Respect?: Yosuke pushes Teddie for calling the Protagonist "Sensei" and not getting respected.
Yosuke: Dude, you call him [Yu] Sensei and then don't show me any respect?!
- Everything's Better with Spinning: His Follow-Up Attack.
- Exposition Fairy: Shares it with others at times, but the trope most consistently applies to him.
- Facepalm: He does one during the episode 15 of the anime at the nightclub. The situation called for it.
- Female Gaze: In the anime, quite a lot of shots are focused on his butt.
- Flanderization: In the Anime. In the game, Yosuke acted as the unofficial mouth-piece for the Protagonist, so he was quite talented at deductive reasoning. This aspect of his character was given to Narukami in the anime, so Yosuke's Butt Monkey and Lovable Sex Maniac aspects have increased instead.
- Flower Motifs: Best showcased with his swimming trunks and how his Youthful Wind spell causes flowers to sprout around him and his allies. "Hana" is part of his last name after all.
- Foil: To Adachi. Both characters are initially furious that they have to live in Inaba, and feel above the city and everyone in it. While Adachi snaps, Yosuke overcomes it by forming relationships with those around him.
- To the Protagonist as well, to an extent. Both are out of towners who co-lead the Investigation team, but while the Protagonist is The Ace, a Chick Magnet and keeps calm under intense pressure, Yosuke is the Butt Monkey, a Casanova Wannabe and tends to let his emotions cloud his judgement. This becomes incredibly important when deciding whether or not to throw Namatame inside of the TV, where the Protagonist's main opposition is more or less Yosuke.
- Funny Afro: His tier 3 Persona, Susano-o No Okami, has a huge, flaming afro.
- Gameplay and Story Segregation: Averted with Yosuke's status as Butt Monkey. His Luck Stat is the worst of all the characters.
- Gayngst: Played for laughs in the anime after Yu begins flirting with him at the group date cafe. He begins freaking out and saying he "crossed a line that should never be crossed".
- Groin Attack: Tends to be given "Critical Hits to the Nads" by Chie.
- Taken Up to Eleven when Shadow Chie delivers a devastating kick to Jiraiya's crotch in the manga, which Yosuke feels of course.
- Handsome Lech: Was designed to be a rather handsome young man. In-universe, his peers think that he's good-looking enough to stand a chance at crossdressing, but this admiration is offset by him being "pure disappointment the moment he opens his mouth."
- Have I Mentioned I Am Heterosexual Today?: Yosuke is clearly insecure about his own sexuality and will immediately assert that he didn't mean it that way whenever he says something that could even be vaguely interpreted as homosexual as well as endlessly tease Kanji about his own sexuality to feel more confident in himself. Likewise, when at the Bath House, he'll constantly complain that he's not into that kind of thing, despite no one ever suggesting that he is. Justified in that it's pretty typical teen behavior.
- Headphones Equal Isolation: Yosuke is always seen with his headphones, either around his neck or on his ears. This seems to be done purposefully to make him seem unapproachable and keep a distance from others, as he wasn't particularly close to anyone in Inaba before Yu arrived. By the time of The Golden's epilogue however, he is seen without them.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Yu/The Protagonist. Yosuke refers to him as "Partner" throughout the game, and Arena establishes/canonises that Yu refers to Yosuke in the same way.
- Honor Before Reason: No matter how crazy or weird the TV World or the investigation gets, Yosuke refuses to consider backing down.
- Hopeless Suitor: Towards Saki. He has a crush on her even though he knows that she despised him. His attempts to flirt with Yukiko and Rise also gets rejected and ignored respectively.
- Hormone-Addled Teenager: He's a teenager, and without question the most lecherous and openly perverted member of the Investigation Team.
- Improbable Weapon User: In addition to knives and maintenance tools, Yosuke can also use bones, maracas, and CORN against his foes. These joke weapons tend to have higher stats than their more serious counterparts.
- Innocently Insensitive: The first time he, Chie, and Yukiko meet Nanako he challenges Chie to a cook-off, offering to have Nanako judge and saying that one of them would probably "make something that ranks up there with your mom's cooking." Nanako points out that her mother died in an accident, and forgives him for saying that when he quickly apologizes.
- Insistent Terminology: Sure, you could call them scooters, but he'd rather you refer to them as motorbikes.
- Jack-of-All-Trades/The Red Mage: Jiraiya has good buffs, physical skills, Garu spells and an odd healing ability. Towards the end of the game, he (and Jiraiya's successor, Susano-O) begins trending toward Lightning Bruiser, especially with good equipment.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Yosuke has the heart of a hero, an unparalleled sense of justice and is generally an incredibly reliable friend to the Protagonist. To the entire rest of the cast, however, he can be a bit of a whiny bully.
- Jerkass Has a Point: When Chie suggests leaving the matter of Saki's death to the police, he snaps at her, telling her that they are really useless. He stresses that even if they told the police about the TV world, they probably wouldn't be believed. As soon as Adachi makes a visit and shows how naive he is, Chie realizes Yosuke is right about his statement. The trope is slightly twisted after The Reveal that Adachi himself is the killer, and he could have sabotaged them.
- Licking the Blade: He does this in the anime◊. He then claims these are fake. Not that it stops the police from arresting him and Narukami…
- The Lancer: Serves as this to the Protagonist, by virtue of effectively being his mouthpiece in the original game/Golden. Arena establishes that this is their canon relationship, with Yu & Yosuke being the ones who make the decision to reinstate the Investigation Team at the end of the game, the game explicitly stating that the two of them had discussed it the prior evening. Furthermore, Arena establishes/canonises that Yosuke is the more verbal of the two whilst Yu is far more reserved.
- The Lost Lenore: Saki is this to him, even after he learns what she really thought about him.
- Meaningful Name: "Yosuke" can mean "to give help" or "support", reflecting his role as a Living Emotional Crutch for many of his Junes co-workers and the pride he takes in helping others.
- Mr. Vice Guy: His vices primarily being bored of Inaba and difficulty considering the ramifications of his words and actions, which often leads to Moral Dissonance and his being on the receiving end of Laser-Guided Karma.
- The Not-Love Interest: Yosuke's friendship with Yu is one of the strongest relationships in the game to the point where Yosuke states outright that "We're so close that "Best Friend" just doesn't describe what he means to me. He's my partner.". In the anime, due to the lack of any actual relationships forming between Yu and the girls beyond Ship Tease, Yosuke actually steps in to play the love interest role several times.
- Number Two: Clearly the Protagonist's confidant, to the point where the two discuss the team's next moves in private. Yosuke also generally acts as the leader of the team, as the Protagonist can't talk.
- Potty Emergency: He has one when he first discovers the TV World with the Main Character and Chie. In the games, it actually turns out helpful; part of what helps Teddie pinpoint Adachi as hiding in the room where Mayumi died is because he can smell the whiff of old urine.
- Promotion to Parent: He pretty much adopts Teddie as he's the only one who could feasibly house him.
- Real Men Wear Pink: In Golden's epilogue he's mostly eased up on his "Have I Mentioned I Am Heterosexual Today?" stance, in a literal example of the trope.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: The red to the Protagonist's blue.
- The Resenter: In the ending of his Social Link route, he admits he was jealous of how successful you were in everything you did, especially compared to him. Nonetheless, he knows he shouldn't feel that way, and he respects you for everything you do.
- Revenge Before Reason: He really wants to avenge Saki, and while usually one of the most rational and level-headed of the team, he tends to get more rash and impulsive whenever he gets (or seems to get) closer to accomplishing that goal.
- That Came Out Wrong: Has a knack for spouting out innuendo.
- She Is Not My Girlfriend: This is what he said to Chie when she started saying that he has a crush on Saki.
- Shut Up, Hannibal!: Responds to Adachi's Hannibal Lecture by saying "You're nothing but a worthless criminal".
- He gives Adachi another one after the latter is defeated:
Adachi: Ngh...fine. If you think you have the power to change the future, go right ahead.
Yosuke: Everyone has the power to do that.
- Small Name, Big Ego: Yosuke serves as an interesting aversion. He starts out with traits of this, but after Saki's death, he actually ends up as The Lancer.
- The First Cut Is the Deepest: During his Social Link event in the Protagonists room, Yosuke decides he can't be with a girlfriend until he avenges Saki… which is definitely not reflected in the main storyline.
- Small Town Boredom: Ultimately subverted, once he realizes how much he came to love Inaba.
- Stepford Smiler: Combined with Sad Clown, this quality tends to crop up whenever Saki is brought up and is much more obvious in his Social Link. Shadow Yosuke calls him out on this in the Animation, citing that he was one of these even before the events of the main game took place.
- Straw Loser: In both the game and especially the anime, Yosuke serves as a way of making the Protagonist look even cooler, being a Casanova Wannabe who can't seem to be taken seriously by anyone. This actually gets played for drama in his Social Link, where he admits he developed a grudge from living in the Protagonist/Yu's shadow.
- Took a Level in Badass: He takes several levels throughout The Animation. When he first uses his Persona, he fails to even land a hit on his enemies. Near the end of the series, he not only gets more precise, but his spells become powerful enough to gravely injure a Reaper. He also saves Yu from death thrice and is the first to attain his Ultimate Persona.
- Troll: Shadow Yosuke is no better than Adachi.
- The Gadfly: Yosuke himself is this in comparison, as he enjoys getting a rise out of people with some well-placed snark. He usually pays dearly for this though.
- Unfazed Everyman: He manages to be this despite having Persona powers, and is usually the one to Lampshade the weird stuff they encounter in the TV World.
After Teddie somehow grows himself a human body inside his suit.
Yosuke: What kind of creature would do that?! I mean… What IS he? […] *Sigh* Then again, this hardly the first bizarre thing we've seen…
- Vitriolic Best Buds: With Chie. Also with Teddie, though it is more downplayed.
- Weapon Twirling: He does this while in battle and in the opening animation. It backfires when he nearly drops his dagger in both.
- What the Hell Are You?: To Teddie after he is unmasked to see nothing inside.
An upbeat girl with short light-brown hair who usually wears a green athletic jacket decorated with buttons. Her weapon is a pair of greaves. She has an obsession with kung-fu, and even uses them in battle, similar to Lisa Silverman
. Her obsession goes so far that she even attacks Yosuke over a martial-arts DVD. Most of the time, she is friendly, cheerful, and energetic, but has a short temper, especially with Yosuke. She, Yukiko and Rise are unskillful cooks, providing normally unpalatable to terribly awful dishes to the crew several times
Her Persona is Tomoe Gozen of the Chariot Arcanum, a muscular female wearing a yellow outfit reminiscent of Bruce Lee
's "Game of Death" costume, wielding a double-bladed naginata. Tomoe Gozen initially learns both physical techniques and Bufu (Ice) spells, but is not that proficient with magic and can only learn mid-level spells; Teddie later becomes the chief Bufu mage
. Tomoe evolves into Suzuka Gongen, who is wielding what can only be described as Darth Maul's
lightsaber, after completing The Chariot Social Link. In Golden, her persona can evolve further into Haraedo-no-Okami, now with golden armor and an even bigger lightsaber, as well as learning the Dragon Hustle skill, which basically is the Heat Riser skill applied to all allies.
Chie's Shadow takes the form of a long haired, masked dominatrix supported by three pale Chies. The dominatrix has long black hair, similar to Yukiko's. It represents her jealousy of Yukiko's natural gifts and talents, as well as her wish and need of control over Yukiko.
Chie is the third founding member of the Investigation team. While not the smartest of the group, she's very attentive to the discussions and always has her ear to the ground for the latest rumors, gossip, and snippets of info regarding events in Inaba.
Through her Social Link, the Protagonist and Chie become closer through training together at the Samegawa Floodplain. He also learns how Chie and Yukiko first became friends: as children, Chie volunteered to shelter a dog Yukiko found but was unable to bring to her inn due to her parents' disapproval. Over time, the Protagonist learns of how Chie enjoys creating groups and titles for herself, in hopes of being feared by juvenile delinquents and protecting the weak. Hearing from a police officer that high schoolers have been bullying people in the Central Shopping District, Chie and the Protagonist coincidentally help. They first save Chie's middle school friend, who then calls the police. The second time, Chie makes the hoodlums run off just as they attempt to steal from a little boy. Once this occurs, the Protagonist has the option of beginning an intimate relationship with Chie. Depending on what the player decides, Chie will either go to train with the Main Character (friends) or go to his home (romance) and gives him some matching wristbands. Chie's resolve to help others and protect the team, especially the Protagonist, transforms Tomoe Gozen to Suzuka Gongen
. She also resolves to train as a police officer under Dojima's guidance.
In the extended true ending of Persona 4: The Golden
, she has become less self-conscious about not being seen as a girl by those around her. While still sporting her iconic black sports shorts
, she now also has more feminine haircut, along with a black choker and a new frilly, floral-patterned jacket.
- Accidental Proposal: Believes she gave one to Yu during her Winter SL Event in the Golden if romanced. She quickly verifies that it wasn't one, though she doesn't seem to mind the thought of it.
- Action Girl: Even before joining the team she displays an interest in martial arts and recovers very quickly from her encounter with her Shadow.
- Adorkable: Thoughout her social link, Chie has a habit of embarrassing herself by putting her foot in her mouth.
- An Ice Person: Though she's more on physical beatdown, so she only learns up to mid-level Bufu skills. Teddie fills in this role more completely once he joins the party.
- Anger Born of Worry: As soon as the Protagonist and Yosuke return from the TV world with their Personas, she looks worried, but she gets pissed off soon enough after Yosuke asks her what's with the Cry Cute face.
- Armed Legs: Her weapon set is comprised of shoes and other assorted footwear.
- Badass: She only takes a single day to recover from her encounter with her Shadow, where almost everyone else takes a week or two. On top of that, she can punt a tank.
- Badass Pacifist: Decides at one point to take a beating for a little kid without defending herself to protect him and Yukiko.
- Battle Couple: The basis of her Social Link is her desire to become this. Which happens if you wish it to.
- Berserk Button: She's pretty easy to anger, but insulting Yukiko really pisses her off.
- Big Eater
Yosuke: The Meat Lover's Combo... Just like it says in the name, you really have to love meat to order it.
Kanji: Oh, you talking about that thing at the food court? I wanna try it, but it's always sold out...
Yosuke: Don't tell me, did Chie — D-Don't answer that. I'm not sure I want to know for sure that a friend of mine has the appetite of a starved wolf...
- If you romance Chie and take her to the summer festival, she'll admit that she feels self conscious about eating so much.
- The Big Girl: A position shared with Kanji, as she is the most physical technique-orientated of the team.
- Boke and Tsukkomi Routine: Though spirited, she often has to play the Straight Man to Yukiko, Yosuke and Yu.
- Book Dumb: Zigzagged. Chie generally fails most exam subjects, but Yukiko states that Chie gets very good scores on those that she doesn't fail. She's also fairly attentive and tends to support conversations about the investigation pretty well.
- In the Golden's "Midnight Trivia Miracle Quiz", she's very good at answering questions related to food and battle.
- Bruce Lee Clone: Since she loves kung-fu movies, she's learned how to emulate her martial arts idol's fighting style during combat, complete with lines likes "Don't Think, Feel".
- The Golden even introduced Bruce Lee's iconic jumpsuit as a costume for her.
- Bully Hunter: In her social link.
- Bystander Syndrome: Earlier on, Chie suggested with Yosuke of letting the police handle the investigation on Saki's death.
- Character Select Forcing: The Shadow that appears after you clear Heaven seems designed to make Chie completely and utterly useless. It is immune to Physical attacks and drains Ice attacks, removing any chance she has of dealing damage to it.
- Critical Hit Class: In Golden, where she gains a passive ability that increases critical hit rate, as well as buffs to increase everyone's critical hit rate. She also learns physical moves with high critical hit chance, compensating for her lower damage compared to fellow attacker Kanji.
- Cry Cute: Broke down crying in relief after the Protagonist and Yosuke made it out alive of the Midnight Channel during their second trip (sans Chie, who tried to keep them tied onto a safety rope, which promptly snapped moments after they enter the Channel).
- Made about a million times more adorable in the anime.
- Cute Bruiser: After Kanji (and potentially the MC) she's the best physical damage dealer of the group.
- Desperately Looking for a Purpose in Life: Discussed in her Social Link.
- Dominatrix: Shadow Chie.
- Don't Look at Me!: She says this to the Protagonist and Yosuke when they see her confronting her Shadow self.
- Comedically played with in the Golden; When the Fox gives her the track suit, she demands that the team, and even the fox, not look at her as she geeks out and maybe changes into it right then and there.
- Don't Think. Feel: One of her quotes at the end of battle.
- Dumbass Has a Point: Mixed with a bit of Self-Deprecation. She spouts the first theories that pop into her head when the Team is discussing the case, but occasionally everyone goes quiet when they realize she's absolutely right.
Chie: "Huh? Y-You guys think that's it? I-I was kinda expecting you to ignore it as Chie being random again..."
- Extremity Extremist: Everything she does in battle she does with her feet, even guarding.
- Fear of Thunder: Golden reveals that Chie is scared of thunderstorms.
- Flanderization: In the original game, although Steak was her Trademark Favorite Food it was only brought up a few times. In Golden this turns into a full blown obsession with all types of meat.
- And, in the original, it's justified as Steak is apparently the big signature food of Inaba.
- Food As Bribe:
- Inverted in the anime. When Yu and Yosuke return from their second trip into the TV World in the second episode, she says the only way she'll forgive them is if they buy her 10 orders of both beefsteak and nikudon.
- Inverted and played straight in the game. Chie makes Yosuke buy her food as repayment for destroying her DVD and he bribes her and Yukiko with steak when he and the protagonist devour their noodles.
- Glass Cannon: Suffers from Physical Skills which consume HP and mediocre defense. However, she hits like a truck once God's Hand comes along and has a Follow-up Attack (and, in Golden, access to Social Link-granted spells) that can instantly kill enemies.
- Hair-Trigger Temper: As would be expected of a Chariot.
- He Is Not My Boyfriend: Happens several times with Yosuke.
- During her festival date with Yu as her romantic partner, she has a kneejerk reaction to a vendor calling Yu her boyfriend, only to realize that that is in fact, true.
- Heroic Self-Deprecation: While it's downplayed, if you ever pay attention to Chie's dialogue, she has a nasty habit of putting herself down whenever she praises anyone else. Her shadow actually attacks her on her Inferiority Complex, accusing her of being friends with Yukiko because it makes Chie feel better about herself.
- Hot-Blooded: Without question the most so of all the Investigation Team. She even has a post-battle victory quote of "Don't think, feel".
- I Can't Believe a Guy Like You Would Notice Me: Chie's romantic social link ends up as this on Valentine's Day, as she is surprised that the protagonist would choose her over someone like Yukiko, Rise, or Naoto.
- Irony: When Rise says she'll need the help of the entire Investigation Team to perform at the Junes Concert, Chie panics and says, "I'm no idol!" Around a year later, she was revealed to be on the initial roster of Persona 4: Dancing All Night.
- Kick Chick: "HWA-TAAAAAAA!"
- Kneel Before Zod: Part of her Shadow's dominatrix theme.
- Last Name Basis: At the beginning only, Yosuke calls Chie by her last name two times; first when he returns her DVD in a panic, and second when he offers her a drink. He calls her by her First Name Basis for the rest of the game onwards.
- Leave the Two Lovebirds Alone: While Yu is in a monogamous relationship with Chie, the girls of the Investigation Team will attempt to leave the two of them alone during Valentine's Day. Neither catches on until Yukiko all but spells it out by accident, prompting Chie to eventually flee to meet up with Yu later, much to Yosuke's amusement.
- Leeroy Jenkins: Decides to run off after Yukiko early in the game. As she is not a Persona-user at this point, this does not end well.
- Light 'em Up: Gains Hama spells from her social link in Golden.
- Magic Knight: Of the "predominantly physical with some spells for flavor" variety. Chie's tehniques are predominantly physical attacks, with a few buffs and low to medium-level ice spells thrown in for variety. Golden balances the flavor out a little by adding some Hama spells to her arsenal via her Social Link.
- Magikarp Power:
- She stops gaining useful Physical and Bufu Skills by the time you get Kanji and Teddie, at least mid-game. This leaves her with only "medium" damage skills for a long time. Once leveled high enough though, she learns multiple powerful skills in rapid succession, like God Hand, Agneyastra (one of the final boss's skills no less!), and Power Charge.
- If you Max her Social Link in Golden, she learns Dragon Hustle (Buffs all allies Attack, Defense, and Agility for 3 turns) come January. Think of it as Persona's version of Luster Candy.
- Modesty Shorts: Her summer outfit
- The Muse: Meta-Example. The thought put into her character "singlehandedly set the design foundation" for the game
- My God, You Are Serious: When she asks Yu what his study habits are like on the way to school, this is her response if you choose the option to say that you don't ever study.
- No Guy Wants an Amazon: Chie has a bit of a complex about this; she considers Yukiko the ideal girl to be like and is surprised if the MC pursues a romance with her.
- Not So Different: She and Yosuke share alot of the same tastes, even though they argue alot.
- Orwellian Retcon: Her original VA is Tracey Rooney. When they replaced her with Erin Fitzgerald, the latter voiced her in every single appearance afterward (even rerecording all of Rooney's lines in Golden).
- Prehensile Hair: Shadow Chie's long hair has blades attached to its tips. And she can control her hair's movements, moreso in the Anime where it borders on Combat Tentacles.
- Poisonous Friend: Was jealous of Yukiko because she was more feminine and popular than her, leading her to attempt to manipulate Yukiko so she'd stay dependent on Chie. Her Shadow calls her out on this and she determines to stop being one after accepting it as Tomoe.
- Powers Do The Fighting: Shadow Chie never moves when fighting. She relies on magic and her whip to attack.
- Psychotic Smirk: Shadow Chie has a particularly frightening one.
- The Resenter: Shadow Chie reveals she resents Yukiko for being more feminine than her.
- Romantic Two-Girl Friendship: With Yukiko.
- Roundhouse Kick: How she breaks her Persona card.
- Rule of Three: Haraedo-no-Okami is a composite of three Shinto godessess, is Chie's third-tier Persona, and its unique Dragon Hustle spell buffs the party's Attack, Defense, and Hit/Evasion Rate.
- Sick and Wrong: Her response to Yosuke having come to the school camping trip with swimsuits picked out for her and Yukiko just on the off chance that they wouldn't have brought their own.
- She's Got Legs: Yosuke doesn't think so. Yu, on the other hand, thinks that "they're fine."
- Shorttank: Fits the archetype pretty well, and her summer outfit, especially in Golden, is the iconic dress-style.
- Status Buff: Her Dragon Hustle is perhaps the most powerful and costly kind of this spell in the game, effectively casting Heat Riser on the entire party in one fell swoop.
- The Straight Man: Alongside Naoto, she's this to most of the Investigation Team.
- This Is Unforgivable: Her opinion on the killer kidnapping females as she comments he's a pervert.
- Trademark Favorite Food: Meat in general, but especially steak. She can also give you meat-flavored gum if she's not in your active party and talk to her in a dungeon when there's not a victim needing to be rescued. In fact, there's a quest from a dieting woman that is completed by giving her some of Chie's meat-gum, which she regards with absolute disgust.
- Tomboy with a Girly Streak: Fits this much better than a straight-up tomboy. She's headstrong, brash, athletic, energetic, into martial arts, a glutton with a particular hankering for meat, and a huge Lethal Chef. But, at the same time, she's deeply concerned with how unfeminine she is, appreciates being seen as a girl by guys (the best way to romance her as Yu, in fact, is to compliment her on being girly when she displays such traits), and has several phobias (scary stories and bugs, with Golden adding thunderstorms) traditionally seen as feminine. In the anime, she straight out runs away with Rise and Yukiko from Naoto's shadows because she didn't want to turn old and ugly.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: The tomboy to Yukiko's girly girl, though their relationship is, surprisingly, reversed in certain areas. Most notably, Chie is easily scared by scary stories, thunderstorms and bugs while Yukiko is a Nightmare Fetishist.
- Tsundere: She has moments of this. Yosuke is usually on the receiving end of the "tsuntsun" (including critical hits to the nads) while Yukiko gets a good part of her "deredere."
- Her Shadow, for some reason, alternates between "gazing" and "looking scornfully" at Yosuke. Either way, when she does that it means that pain will follow.
- A Twinkle in the Sky: Her "Galactic Punt" Follow-Up Attack.
Yukiko is the only daughter of the owner of the Amagi Inn, and thus the heir to the generations-old family business. Despite that, she is a terrible cook
. She is a smart girl, but quite socially awkward, with only Chie as her true friend. She fights with a fan
, but is most suited for heavy magic fighting
. Her Persona is Konohana Sakuya of the Priestess Arcanum, and later evolves into Amaterasu. In Golden, her persona can evolve further into Sumeo-Okami, which learns the Burning Petals skill, the most powerful fire attack in the game.
Yukiko fits the role of both
the White Mage
and the Black Mage
, learning powerful healing spells (including one that fully restores the entire party's HP!) as well as destructive Agi (Fire) spells.
When Yukiko was kidnapped and thrown into the Midnight Channel, it created a dungeon in the form of an European castle, while her Shadow masqueraded as a princess continually searching for a "prince" to whisk her away. The castle and her Shadow were born of her repressed yearning to break free from her designation as heiress to the Inn, instead privately wishing for someone to alleviate her responsibilities. The Protagonist, Yosuke and Chie manage to defeat her Shadow, and she becomes a member of the investigation team.
Yukiko's Shadow looks like a giant, red-feathered bird with her head, kept inside a giant birdcage atop a chandelier — a literal "bird in a gilded cage", reflecting how Yukiko views her life.
In the the earlier stages of her Social Link, Yukiko still desires to leave Inaba and pursue interior design to learn to fend for herself. However, friendly teasing from the Inn's staff and pestering from an irresponsible TV crew
who want to make a program that will ruin the reputation of the Inn eventually made her realize that she had a supportive family and friends that she wants to help and defend. She resolves to accept her duty and manage the inn, evolving her Persona. She is also a possible Love Interest
for the Protagonist depending on player actions in the S. Link.
In the extended true ending of Persona 4: The Golden
, she has become more confident in herself and far less worried about standing out. Yukiko no longer wears red all the time, instead sporting a simple blue and white dress when you meet her, and now wears her hair in a bun
- Adult Fear: Her family's inn goes through bad times to the point she has to leave school to provide assistance, causing her to fear for her future. Before getting her Persona, she desires to run away and thinks she can't do it alone. Post-Persona, when she drives out the Paparazzi, the Amagi Inn starts to recover and she decides to stay, to take charge of the Inn and be with her family.
- Aloof Dark-Haired Girl: A subversion. Though she has the looks and is thought as aloof and hard-to-get by her peers, Yukiko is revealed to be a complete goofball who laughs at the silliest jokes, has a hidden perverted side, and gets really excited about telling scary stories when she's comfortable with the people around her.
- Armor-Piercing Slap: Quite mean, too, as Kanji can attest.
- Beware the Nice Ones: She is scary when provoked. She manages to scare away paparazzi trying to take advantage of her inn and she politely and sweetly blackmails Kanji into joining the cross-dressing pageant (who simply responds with 'you're a very scary girl, Yukiko-sempai'). Also, this line from the anime:
Yukiko: (about Shadow Kanji) I say we reduce him to ASH next time we see him!
Yu: Sounds good.
Chie: Don't forget guys, we have to find Kanji!!!
Yukiko: (disappointed) Right…
- Black Mage: Her enormous magic stats aside, her 3rd tier Persona skill is the only overtly offensive one.
- The Cameo: In Persona 3 Portable's female protagonist route, when the PC's sports club goes to a summer fellowship in Inaba and stays at the Amagi Inn. She's younger and has shorter hair, and impresses the Gekkoukan students with her looks and maturity.
- Casting a Shadow: Gains Mudo spells if you level up her social link in Golden.
- Dark Is Not Evil
- Hoist by Her Own Petard: None of Yukiko's Personas are immune or even resistant to Darkness spells. If an enemy repels her Mudo spells back on her, there's a very low probability of her surviving it.
- Character Select Forcing: The only member of the team aside from Teddie to get anything other than pitiful heals and that character is more of a support role, while Yukiko also has hard hitting Agi spells. A variant happens during a stakeout early in the game, you get the choice to team up with Chie, Yosuke or Yukiko, but circumstances will always leave you with Yukiko.
- Cherry Blossom Girl: Her initial persona fits the visual themes. Yukiko provides the personality.
- The Chick: Shares this position with Rise.
- Clingy Jealous Girl: If the Protagonist takes Ai on a date on a Sunday, Yukiko catches them together. She questions him on it, snaps at Ai for interrupting, scares her off and spends the rest of her day with him as if nothing was wrong.
- Cloudcuckoolander: She has, on more than one occasion, been shown to have a somewhat out there thought process.
- On the other hand, her "Outside-The-Box" observations come in handy more than once.
- Combat Hand Fan: Fitting her role as The Ojou, her Weapon of Choice is a fan.
- Comically Missing the Point: Tends to take gross exaggerations and accidental Double Entendres at face value.
- Covert Pervert: She's usually the shy one, but get her a little tipsy and see what happens. Or better yet, make her think she's drunk and watch her inhibitions fly out of the window.
- Give her one of the sexier alternate costumes when in an intimate relationship with her. She's happy to dress up, but she would prefer it be in private...
- Deadpan Snarker: The anime occasionally shows her taking a level in snark. Particularly against Yosuke:
Yosuke: (at Junes, with the rest of the gang) Still, don't you feel sorry for Nanako, bringing her here of all places?
Yukiko: (indifferently) Yes, I feel sorry for her.
Yosuke: You didn't have to rub it in!
- She does this in Golden as well during the ski trip. When Yosuke is about to suggest something for the rooms being coed, she immediately cuts him off with a no. Her response to him saying she should have let him finish?
Yukiko: Oh, were you going to suggest that we play cards?
- Delivered in such a deadpan tone that it's hard to tell if she's snarking or being serious.
- Distaff Counterpart: Golden's extras explain her initial persona is a feminine version of Izanagi.
- Ditzy Genius: While a straight-A student (she is a Priestess, after all), she does have a peculiar thought process when it comes to certain topics, like taking strange delight on someone described as "legendary".
- Drunk on Milk: During the King's Game.
- Everything's Better with Princesses: …Unless they're the malevolent manifestation of your repressed emotions.
- The Gadfly: When it's time to induct Kanji, she has Teddie give him two pairs of failed Groucho Glasses (which she and a reluctant Chie tried out earlier) before finally handing him the real ones. Needless to say, she's not the only one who gets a good laugh.
- Girls Are Really Scared of Horror Movies: Subverted. She's the only member of the Investigation Team utterly immune to creepy ghost stories. And she's the best at telling them. The type of movies she's most interested in seeing are horror films, also. She's actually able to dissect the film and explain what made it suspenseful and exciting.
- Gold and White Are Divine: Her second Persona, Amaterasu, and her final Persona, Sumeo-Okami.
- He Is Not My Boyfriend: She goes out with Yu so much that her family starts to assume he is. She denies it. But at that point, it's pretty clear that even when she's shouting this trope, she really wants to be proven wrong.
- Hime Cut: Part of her Yamato Nadeshiko image.
- Hot-Blooded: In spite of what you might think based on the rest of her characterization, she is aggressively enthusiastic about wiping all shadows from existence. This is rather fitting considering her element, which can also qualify as her own touch of iron.
- Humor Dissonance: Invoked, Yukiko finds humor in the most bizarre places. Her friends just leave her be.
- The Hyena: Her laughing fits can last for several minutes. Chie even calls her a "crazy hyena" once (or "Demon Queen" in the Japanese version). This only makes her laugh harder.
- I Need to Go Iron My Dog: If the Protagonist takes the friendship route after her Love Confession, she quickly says she has errands to run and runs off on the brink of tears.
- I Will Wait for You: Essentially what she tells the protagonist. She'll never stop loving him, and on Valentine's Day in Golden she says she'll wait for his return so they can be married.
- Klingon Promotion: She says that if she had been born a boy or if there was a precedent for female leaders in Neo Featherman, she would have battled you for the Red Phoenix Ranger position.
- Lady of War/Lady of Black Magic: In accordance with her Yamato Nadeshiko exterior, she is very graceful on the battlefield.
- Lethal Chef: Not always lethal, as she manages to make "flavorless" food later on. The stuff she gives to the Protagonist, however… well, you need a high Courage stat to actually eat it, so let's leave it at that.
- She believes that adding squid ink to chocolate would help give the treat some "character", entirely basing this assumption on how the two are of a similar color.
- Lonely Rich Kid: Before meeting Chie.
- Lost Food Grievance: Her fried tofu.
- Love at First Sight: She confesses this was the case to the MC on Christmas Eve.
- Loved I Not Honor More: When romanced, she repeatedly expresses that she's aware the Protagonist will leave to return home one day, but it doesn't stop her from loving him.
- Love Hurts: She takes the MC's friendship choice harder than any other female on the Investigation Team, and leaves hints of lingering bitterness in certain costume dialog segments and on Valentine's Day. But she ultimately accepts his friendship.
- The Maiden Name Debate: On Valentine's Day, she says the Protagonist will have to take her surname when they're married for the sake of the Amagi inn.
- The Medic: This aspect of her Persona alone is going to make her a character you keep in your party for a long time, especially since she learns the mother of all healing spells at level 74. note It also makes a lot of sense given that the Arcana she represents is The Priestess, i.e. the kind of person you would expect to be a healer.
- Meet Cute: Technically their second meeting, but the Protagonist runs into her when she's wearing a Kimono. Subverted if the player decides not to romance her.
- Never Live It Down: In-universe — Shadow Yukiko once said she wanted to "score with a hot stud." Teddie brings it up sporadically throughout the game.
- Nightmare Fetishist: Absolutely adores ghost stories, as shown in the ski trip.
- Nonindicative Name: "Yuki" is a name more often associated with "snow." Although, she initially feels that it's a Meaningful Name because she's "worthless" like snow.
- Not So Different: From Rise during the King's Game. When both of them were "drunk" off their asses, they joined forces in making the game as lewd and sexual as possible. In fact, the two of them turn it into a full-blown harem in the anime, along with a mortified Chie.
- Ojou: Of a generations-old inn.
- Our Dragons Are Different: Shadow Yukiko has a certain draconic vibe, what with all the fire and princess themes. The Anime even has her keeping Yukiko in a cage, which she viciously defends.
- Parasol of Prettiness: Only with the pink yukata.
- Parents Know Their Children: In Golden, her Social Link concludes with her finding out her parents and everyone at the Inn knew she was planning to leave the whole time, and that they would love and support her no matter what she chose. If romanced, they also support her marrying the Protagonist.
- Playing with Fire: Yukiko's primary attack spells are fire-related and her third tier Persona gains Burning Petals, which may well be the strongest spell in the game.
- Precision F-Strike: Yukiko rarely swears, so if she tells you to shut the hell up as she does to those reporters in her Social Link, you know she's angry. Shadow Yukiko's speech is practically a Cluster F-Bomb by her standards.
- Proper Tights with a Skirt: She's the poster girl.
- The Red Mage/White Magician Girl: In combat, she straddles the line with her powerful Agi skills but her personaily fits the White Magician Girl stock character type in addition to being one of the resident Medics.
- Romantic Two-Girl Friendship: With Chie.
- Ryokan (inn): The Amagi Inn of course. She's going to inherit it and is the Goddess of the trope.
- Saying Too Much: During the King's Game scene, in a moment of drunken silliness she accidentally spills the beans about the Shadow World and the Personas to Naoto. Then again, she didn't believe it.
- Shipper on Deck: Regardless of whether Yu romances Yukiko, she thinks that Chie and Yosuke would make for a cute couple.
- Shrinking Violet: She appears this way at first, but as she gets more comfortable around the Protagonist and Yosuke, her true personality traits emerge.
- Shut Up, Hannibal!: Calls out Adachi on his poorly contrived Freudian Excuse for his actions.
- Silk Hiding Steel: Seems soft spoken and inoffensive, but has a strong will and a fierce temper; there's a reason her Persona specializes in Agi spells. Completing her Social Link gives her the courage to use her steely side a little more.
- Squishy Wizard: Probably the worst character in terms of defensive stats, but boy does she hit anything not resistant or immune to Agi like a truck.
- Through His Stomach: The most blatant example out of the girls. She knows she's a horrible chef, but she uses her attempts to get better as an excuse to go on not-dates with the Protagonist, with the aim of one day making something that pleases him. In the friendship route, she finally gets it right.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: The girly girl to Chie's tomboy, at first glance, but it's surprisingly reversed in certain areas. Chie is easily scared by scary stories, thunderstorms and bugs while Yukiko is a Nightmare Fetishist.
- Tsundere: Shows shades of being a Type-B in the game (mainly getting violent when the males act perverted), but is definitely a Type-B in the Anime.
- Useless Accessory: Don't expect Amaterasu or Sumeo-Okami to ever use those katanas.
- White Magician Girl: She's the best healer in the game (only surpassed by The Protagonist given the right Persona), the most gentle player character, uses a blunt weapon that amplifies her spells and is a potential love interest. The only way she steps outside this trope is her repertoire of hard-hitting Agi spells.
- Yamato Nadeshiko: Played with. She fits the archetype, then her Shadow deconstructs it and shows its opposite. She ultimately shows a modern version of this trope: soft spoken, strong-willed and polite yet not afraid to stand up to herself and get dangerous if necessary, as an unfortunate group of paparazzi discovered.
A delinquent whose mother runs a textile shop that the Amagi Inn frequents. Despite his brash outlook, he cares a lot for his mother
and is skilled at handicrafts
, which caused people to shun him for having "girly" hobbies
, which made him question his sexuality
. He fights with brute force using chairs, tables, plates, etc
, and his Persona is Take-Mikazuchi of the Emperor Arcanum, which evolves into Rokuten-Maoh; it deals heavy physical attacks and learns a few Zio (Lightning)
spells. In Golden, his persona can evolve further into Takeji Zaiten, which has The Man's way skill, which can knock down and dizzy every foe.
When thrown into the Midnight Channel, it generates the Steamy Bathhouse dungeon. His Shadow masquerades as him wearing nothing but a towel
and speaking like a Camp Gay
looking for "love". It later taunts Kanji as a gynophobic because women shunned him due to his hobbies, but Kanji refused him, causing the Shadow to show its true form and was later defeated by the Protagonist. Accepting his flaws, Kanji joins the Investigation Team and at the same time, starts re-attending Yasogami as a first-year.
Kanji's Shadow takes on the form of his upper body atop a ridiculously masculine male form with a rose garden where the head should be, carrying two Mars symbols which it uses as weapons and flanked by two Macho Camp
bodybuilders. This ludicrous exaggeration of masculinity and homosexuality is a distillation of all of Kanji's fears about his orientation.
In his Social Link, Kanji meets a little boy who lost his friend's doll and to cheer him up, he makes him a doll, which turns out to be so impressive he orders more. Kanji was later accused of bullying said boy
, but the Protagonist encourages him to tell the truth instead of hiding it. Eventually, Kanji learned to like and take pride of his hobby and opens up his own handicraft class.
In the extended true ending of Persona 4: The Golden
, he has stopped trying to assert his masculinity to others. He can be seen with now unbleached black hair and a pair of glasses. His attire has similarly changed, as he now dresses in a simple short-sleeved button up white shirt and black dress pants.
- Adorkable: Basically sums him up, once you get past his tough-guy exterior.
- All of the Other Reindeer: He prefers "girly" hobbies and was never accepted by either guys or girls.
- Ambiguously Gay: By design. It zigzags during school trips, and then of course there's what happens with Teddie during the King's game. The Golden adds a few scenes that some would argue makes things much more explicate, but it's mostly just Ho Yay with Yosuke and is played for laughs so it's still up in the air.
- Ambiguously Bi: While Kanji does question his sexuality a lot and does have feminine personality traits, he also shows attraction to Naoto, even after finding out her true gender. He gets a lovestruck blush after Yukiko slaps him and then promises to be "more gentle" next time, repeating the words "more gentle" in a dreamy tone of voice. During the camping trip, he's also visibly appreciative of the sight of Chie and Yukiko in their swimsuits. In The Golden, he's shown to be quite interested in joining Yosuke and Yu in their plan to go cruising for chicks on their new motorcycle and is the first to suggest they should try actively hitting on some girls when Yosuke's plan of "sit around on the scooter and wait for interested girls to approach" is a bust.
- Camp Gay: Shadow Kanji is designed to be this, as he represents Kanji's insecurity with his sexuality and other issues brought about by his softer, more feminine personality traits.
- Macho Camp: Shadow Kanji's minions.
- Badass: He fights off an entire biker gang with a shield — all because the noise they made woke his mother up. In the Anime of the Game, he didn't even have that — meaning he took them all down barehanded.
- Berserk Button: Implying that he's gay ("YOU SAYIN' I LIKE DUDES?!"). Or insulting Naoto.
- Big Eater: When given the chance, he can pack away quite a lot. It's most evident when he first joins the team and gets brought to "the headquarters" at Junes.
- The Big Guy: A position shared with Chie.
A teenage Idol Singer
often appearing in TV programs and ads as "Risette". She suddenly declared retirement and moved to Inaba to help on her grandmother's tofu shop and enroll in Yasogami High as a freshman. Rise is cheerful and bubbly, but also sweet deep down. She is mostly out of the frontlines and prefers analyzing the enemies and their weaknesses
. Her Persona is Himiko of the Lovers Arcanum and later evolves into Kanzeon. In Golden, her persona can evolve further into Kouzeon, along with gaining the Complete Analysis skill, which instantly reveals every enemy's elemental affinities and, if they're not a boss, their skills.
Her dungeon in the Midnight Channel is the Marukyu Striptease, wherein her Shadow masquerades as her in a flashy gold bikini and teases a lot about showing off her 'stuff'. This all stems from Rise's fear that everyone stereotypes her as an airheaded
pop star, while in truth she just wants to be loved for who she is. Rise's Shadow possesses analytical skill that allows it to predict the party's every move, making it impossible to defeat; it takes a Heroic Sacrifice
from Teddie to finish it. Rise comes to terms with her Shadow and it becomes her Persona, but at the same time Teddie's existential doubt comes to a head and his
Shadow emerges. Rise takes Teddie's place as Mission Control
and helps the party defeat it, then she joins the Investigation Team.
Rise's Shadow takes on the form of a naked woman dangling from a striptease pole with technicolor flesh and a fractal satellite dish where its face should be. It constantly shouts for the party to look at it, embodying Rise's concern about being exploited.
In her Social Link, Rise was continuously pestered by her past manager to return to showbiz despite her misgivings. She revealed that as a child she was a shy bully magnet, until her debut as a star, which she thought would help her win some friends; what she saw are people seeing her more as "Risette" than her true self. However, more reminders of her past came from a letter from her number-one fan expressing sadness over her retirement, and the emergence of another idol she once trained and is now taking her spotlight, causing fans to badmouth "Risette", which inadvertently annoyed her. Eventually, Rise realized "Risette" is still an aspect of herself she shouldn't discard and resolves to return to showbiz come spring, evolving her Persona. Rise states that she loves the Protagonist, and will show a very obvious interest in him during the storyline regardless of her Social Link standing or whether you date her.
Teddie is a denizen of the Midnight Channel, taking the form of a talking bear plush that actually has nothing inside. He initially is a Mission Control
, then after Rise fills in for him, he soon joins in combat, equipped with claws, knuckles and other hand implements
. His initial Persona is Kintoki-Douji of the Star Arcanum, which eventually evolves into Kamui. His Persona uses Bufu (Ice) spells
, and has some support and healing skills as well. In Golden, his persona can evolve further into Kamui-Moshiri, which has the Kamui Miracle skill, which, well, has virtually random effects that can heal, knock down or inflict random status elements on your party or all enemies, or do absolutely nothing.
Teddie first acts as a reluctant guide of sorts, providing the party with special glasses that allow them to see through the mist and summon their Persona. In the Japanese version, his sentences always end with -kuma
, and often addresses the Protagonist as "sensei" out of respect for his abilities (and to avoid using his name during scenes with voice acting
). He also serves as another comic relief in the story arc (making lame jokes like Shuji Ikutsuki
), supported by Yosuke's nagging curiosity about who (or rather, what) he really is. In the English version, his speech is laced with un-bear-ably bad puns
. Also, even if he is from the Midnight Channel, Teddie knows little about where he came from and what he is supposed to do with his life.
After saving the party from Rise's Shadow almost at the cost of his life (though it only literally flattened him), his fears of having a superficial existence manifests into a bigger Shadow. It's revealed to everyone near the end of the game that Teddie is really a docile Shadow, preferring to befriend humans instead of killing them, which explains the cute form he manifested
. After being saved, Teddie gains a degree of human will along with the Persona Kintoki-Douji, allowing him to participate in fights more actively.
As Teddie is a Shadow himself, his own Shadow is a much larger version of him, with a crack in its face showing something squirming under the surface (a visualization of Teddie's fears about his origin). It is later revealed in hindsight that Teddie's Shadow was somehow hijacked by the end-game boss, the supporting evidence being his Shadow's baleful eye floating in the emptiness inside him being identical to the eyes possessed by said boss's avatar. Further evidence comes from the anime episode in which the party fights Teddie's Shadow. Rise scans it, and detects a presence hiding inside it. Using her visor, we can see an image of the boss's avatar itself, which appears in episode 25.
In the real world, he takes the form of a blonde boy who goes by the name "Kumada" (Japanese — actually a common surname)/"Teddie" (English), and in a certain school event, convincingly cosplays
. He stays at the Hanamuras and often helps Yosuke with part-time work at Junes, either as a mascot
handing out balloons, a cook at the food court, or a grocery stocker when in human form.
- Action Bomb: Becomes one to save the Investigation Team from Shadow Rise. This is how his Persona, Kintoki-Douji fights in the Animation when he isn't casting spells, as it never seems to occur to him to just throw the missile at enemies outside of the opening animation.
- Adventure Rebuff: Initially kicks Yosuke, Chie and the Protagonist out of the TV World because of how dangerous it is for them there. Later, he argues that the fact that they insist on coming back means they are the culprits behind the murders and refuses to trust them and only changes his mind when they swear to capture the real culprit. Later deconstructed with the realization that Teddie never actually wanted them to leave—secretly, he was lonely and wanted human company, but was too filled with compassion and self-loathing (assuming that he is a Shadow) to accept them.
- An Ice Person: His attack spells are ice element.
- Anti Nihilist: Teddie represents "Emptiness" just as Adachi does, but from the opposite perspective. While Adachi sees Emptiness as an excuse to say life has no point, Teddie (through the party) comes to understand that being empty is not a bad thing. Because it means you can fill your life with something good and create your own meaning.
- Attractive Bent-Gender / Even the Guys Want Him: The only guy from the Team who can actually look convincingly female. One of the judges openly even says "I'd hit that".
- Possibly including the Protagonist in Golden. See Almost Kiss above.
- Badass: Your party is getting beaten up by Shadow Rise. He gives her a One-Hit Kill.
- Bear-serk Button: He got pretty angry when Mitsuo called him a freak.
- Badass Cape: On all three of his Personas.
- Beary Funny/Beary Friendly: He's the nicest guy you'll ever meet.
- Big Eater: Teddie adores human food and so gorges himself on it whenever he can. During the School Trip, for example, he's mentioned as eating eleven bowls of ramen.
- Big "NO!": In the game, after the Protagonist pushes him, he yells this while struggling to get up.
- Bishōnen: With lots an' lots of Bishie Sparkle.
- Brutal Honesty: "Wow, this tastes awful!", said in one of the cheeriest tones imaginable.
- Casanova Wannabe: Subverted. Initially, he just comes off as overestimating his charm to the ladies… until he gets his human form. He can even charm guys, if he needs too.
- The Charmer: Well, he tries to be. And in human form, he manages it to people who don't know him.
- Jack of All Stats: He specializes in Bufu spells, and courtesy of his high magic stat, he's better with them than Chie. He also can use most of the Dia spells like Yukiko, is physically stronger than she is, can also heal status effects, and has a nice array of status buffs to boot. His only detrimental stat is his evasion, which will always be rather low.
- Dangerous Forbidden Technique: Played for Laughs. His Superultramegahyperuber Teddie Nose can pick up even the slightest scent. But after three minutes, he gets an ungodly amount of snot.
Rise: Eww! *pushes Teddie*
- Dark Is Not Evil: He's actually a Shadow.
- Department of Redundancy Department: During the quiz show, he refers to the finale as the "Last Ultimate Finale". Yosuke points out that they all mean the same thing.
- Everything's Better with Spinning: His Follow-Up Attack and Cavalry Attack.
- Was designed as a Decon-Recon Switch of the classic Japanese children's character Doraemon.
- In human form, he's an expy of Tamaki Suou from Ouran High School Host Club with similar rose motifs, Cloud Cuckoolander tendencies (especially their ability to be excited over something mundane, like kotatsus), and The Charmer tendencies. On the other hand, he looks like a bigger version of Mitsukuni "Honey" Haninozuka from the same series.
- Gender Bender: His human form was originally going to be female while he'd retain his supposed original gender whenever he put his suit back on.
- Goggles Do Nothing: His initial Persona never actually uses the Tomahawk Missile it carries, though this is averted in Persona 4 Arena, The Animation, and Golden, which give him a few physical attack spells that utilize the warhead.
- Good Counterpart: To Adachi. (See Anti Nihilist above.) Rise herself even says it.
Rise: "Teddie's a Shadow who blended in with us. Adachi on the other hand, is a human who likes watching people suffer.
- Handsome Lech: The "handsome" part only applying to his human form.
- Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold: His human form. He is very sweet and innocent in the ways of the world.
- Have I Mentioned I Am Heterosexual Today?: He's all for charming people of any gender and is willing to kiss men when inebriated. However, he's not very open to the latter when he's sober, dreads the idea of three teenage boys being crammed into his suit, and suffers a humorous Heroic BSOD when he gets a face full of Kanji's "lightning rod" during the beach trip.
- Heroic Resolve: When he returns to the hospital room where Nanako is resting, he realizes that despite his nature, there must still be something he can do. Then his Persona evolves and he runs to meet with the team again.
- Hero-Worshipper: A mild case of it once the Protagonist earns his persona. It's implied that by the end of the game it's been developing into full emotional attachment.
- Humanoid Abomination: He is a Shadow that turned himself into a cute bear mascot and eventually grew himself a human body inside his empty bear suit so people would like him.
- I Choose to Stay: Zig-Zagged. At first, it seems to be his wish to stay in the real world to avoid the loneliness of his world. In the Bad and Normal Endings, he goes back to the TV world after the death of Nanako, because he's unable to cope with failing her. In the Good Ending, he gets his wish to stay in Inaba. In the True Ending, he declares his resolves to stay behind in the beautiful new TV World and act as its lone protector. However, this declaration is ignored by the rest of the cast to his dismay. When he protests their indifference, Yosuke calls him out on trying to sound cool for virtually no reason, because it's not like he can't come and go as he pleases anyway.
- I Just Want to Have Friends: The reason he appears as a cuddly bear, and the reason he comes to hate the TV World after a while.
- Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: His Kamui and Kamui-Moshiri Personas are impaled with a large missile as an allusion to the Ainu bear god of the same name. To elaborate, one of the ways that the Ainu people worship Kamui is by killing a bear cub with a barrage of arrows or "missiles."
- Inspector Javert: Due to having little information and even fewer suspects, he initially believes that Yu and Yosuke are the ones throwing people into his world. When that doesn't seem to be the case, he threatens to trap them in the TV World if they don't agree to help him find the real culprit. Even then, he quietly maintains the belief that the two might be the criminals responsible until Yukiko is saved and provides new insight pertaining to the investigation.
- Large Ham: As Yosuke says, he has a tendency to speak like TV commercials after becoming human.
- Lovable Sex Maniac: Although whether or not he actually understands the concept of "scoring" is left open. His win-quotes in Arena strongly imply that he actually has no idea what sex is, making him more of a KidAnova.
- Mascot: While working at Junes.
- Morphic Resonance: Explicitly averted with his two forms to make the contrast all the stronger.
- My Species Doth Protest Too Much: He's a Shadow who wants to befriend, rather than kill people. This makes sense when you remember that Jungian Shadows are the parts of themselves they least want to admit exists: as most people are decent, they have malicious Shadows, while a cruel or stand-offish person would have a Shadow that just wants to be loved.
- Naked on Arrival: Played with, he arrives in the real world in his Mascot form; when he complains of being too hot, he removes his head, revealing that he's grown a (naked) human body inside his mascot costume, just so he can score with the girls (much to Yukiko's bemusement).
- The Nicknamer: He calls the protagonist "Sensei" and the girls "Chie-chan", "Yuki-chan", "Rise-chan", "Nao-chan", "Nana-chan", and "Marie-chan" (or "Emmy-chan"). He also refers to Dojima "Pops" and Adachi "Adachi-baby."
- Non-Ironic Clown: The bottom-half of his costume resembles a clown suit.
- Paper People: Becomes this after defeating Rise's Shadow.
- Plucky Comic Relief: The most qualified party member for the role.
- Power Fist/Wolverine Claws: Uses claws and spiked gloves as his preferred weapon.
- Pretty Freeloaders: He eventually gets a modest salary, but usually spends most of it on ice cream, leaving him dependent on his friends.
- Private Eye Monologue: Gives a particularly menacing one when the group goes to Tatsumi Port Island, and don't take him. He appears afterwards, surprising the group.
- Pungeon Master: And how.
- Parodied here, slightly more than halfway down the page.
- Fan-subs of the anime keep the bear puns rather than use the -kuma tic.
- Random Effect Spell: The Kamui Miracle Spell. Its description is simply, "Anything can happen!" Casting it results in a lovely dispaly of cartoon stars and rainbows followed shortly after by something horrible or awesome happening to you and/or your foes.
- Rollerblade Good: In Golden, since he has no means of legally acquiring a license to operate a bike like the rest of the team save Kanji.
- Sad Clown: Despite his jovial and downright silly nature, Teddie is really, really hurting inside.
- Stepford Smiler: He is forced to confront this issue and gets better by the end of the game.]]
- Screw Destiny: See Heroic Resolve.
- Sensor Character: By way of smell. As the plot progresses, though, his senses dwindle to the point of being obsolete when Rise joins, which frustrates him but he becomes instrumental in finding Adachi, someone even Rise couldn't sense.
- Shaped Like Itself: Believes himself to be this due to his name, but no one who's met him thought he looked like a bear at first.
- Small Name, Big Ego: Teddie is this game's Ted Baxter, more so after he takes on a human form.
- Straw Nihilist: Shadow Teddie. To further drive the point home, Shadow Teddie's Ultimate Move is appropriately named "Nihil Hand".
- Supernatural Aid: Without Teddie, the Investigation team would have been doomed before it started. It's only because if his ability to return them to Inaba, his glasses that reduce the fog, his keen senses that sniff out trapped humans, and his battle support that they have any chance at all.
- Stupid Sexy Flanders: In human form, especially when crossdressing...
- Team Pet: As much as there's one.
- The Nose Knows: Used word for word as well.
- Tomato in the Mirror: Turns out, he's actually a Shadow. Though this does not come as to big a surprise to the rest of the party, as it would make the most sense.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: He starts out as a timid, antisocial hermit who becomes increasingly more obnoxious, egotistical and rude as the story progresses. This can be excused due to his having No Social Skills and balanced out by him becoming more kind and courageous in the process.
- Trademark Favorite Food: Topsicles, to the point where he willingly stuck to what they practiced when the team become a literal band in the Golden-exclusive concert when Yosuke threatened to make him pay for all of them.
- Tritagonist: He's been working as a part of the team for as long as the initial three, and Adachi serves as a Shadow Archetype to him, like with Yu. It's to the point where his social link levels up automatically, like the Investigation Team and Seekers of Truth links. On top of all that, he's the only member of the team that visits the Velvet Room outside of Yu himself (it's where he and Yu have the final heart to heart that maxes out the Star Social Link in fact).
- Un-bear-ably Lame Pun: More than a few of his puns elicit this kind of reaction from the cast. Even Yukiko, who tends to laugh at a drop of a hat, finds them unfunny.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: With most of his allies, really. Despite getting on their nerves, they all genuinely care about him.
- Whole Costume Reference: One of his outfits in The Ultimate in Mayonaka Arena, with its Japanese Delinquents style hat/golden skull and lightning bolt motif/purple cape/etc, looks suspiciously like a certain martial arts tournament hosting dictator's.
- Wholesome Crossdresser: To the point that Even the Guys Want Him, although most of them are just really freaked out that he does it that well (or at least Naoto is that good at dolling him up).
- Up to Eleven: Apparently even a Shadow can have a Shadow of its own. Not surprisingly, such a creature is borne of near-complete existential despair and insists everything is pointless.
An androgynous girl
who is a famous high-school detective, given the glorious title of "Detective Prince
" by the media. Naoto is adept with revolvers
, and her Persona is summoned by shooting the card. Naoto's initial Persona is Sukuna Hikona of the [Wheel of] Fortune Arcanum, which later becomes Yamato Takeru. They are well-rounded with Light, Dark
and physical skills
at her disposal. In Golden, her persona can evolve further into Yamato Sumeragi, which also gains the Shield of Justice ability, which creates shields around herself and her allies that will block all damage once.Orphaned at a young age
and raised by her detective grandfather
, she yearns to emulate the cool male sleuths she read in novels, accepting the family tradition and aiding her grandfather in his own cases, eventually creating a favorable reputation for herself. She was sent to Inaba by the prefecture police, to gain insight for the murders happening there.
Naoto is yet another survivor of the Midnight Channel, bound by her resentment at being talked down to and treated like a child by the police
, as well as her views on the police force being dominated by men. This manifests in a volatile Shadow that also creates a high-tech facility reminiscent to that of futuristic military bases from science fiction. Her Shadow wears a dress shirt and tie, while wearing an oversized white lab coat, and can act like a serious scientist one minute and like a child the next, further referencing her true feelings. Her Shadow claims she will perform "body modification" to turn Naoto into an adult male so that she can be respected by her fellow cops and cross the divide between gender roles
. However, unlike other victims, she willingly put herself at risk by volunteering for a TV interview, hoping she can become a bait
; she was convinced the Investigation Team had not caught the real killer. The Team promptly tears into her for being so stupid, then welcome her as the last addition to their team.
Naoto's Shadow takes on the form of a robotic version of her, and includes childish attachments like wings and twin ray guns that wouldn't look out of place on an action figure. This references her obsession with gender roles — a tomboy who likes sleuthing and science fiction — while the action-figure qualities of her Shadow mirror her resentment of having her talents belittled due to her age.
In her Social Link, Naoto has several of her possessions stolen, and receives taunting riddles from a Gentleman Thief
. The Protagonist helps her retrieve them, and she becomes more comfortable with his assistance. It is eventually revealed that the "thief" is actually her grandfather, who simply did it to help reignite her passion. If the player openly aims so through their choices, she becomes somewhat more feminine, but will keep it mostly just to herself and the Main Character; following a series of options, she even dresses in the female school uniform on Christmas Eve.
In the extended true ending of Persona 4: The Golden
, she has stopped worrying about being ignored for being a woman. She now sports longer hair, along with a light, form fitting sleeveless shirt and knee-length skirt that shows off her figure.
- Professor Guinea Pig: Not her herself, but her Shadow claimed that it wanted to be "experimentor and experimentee" in the aforementioned Sex Change Operation.
- The Power Of Trust: Her decision to get herself attacked by the killer exemplifies this: She was completely willing to trust the Investigation Team to save her, even though her belief that they had the power to do so at all was only a guess. Subverted when the Investigation Team utterly blast her for this, pointing out that if they had failed, she would be dead.
- Raised by Grandparents: Her parents died when she was younger.
- Rapunzel Hair: In the Persona X Detective Naoto spin-off, her hair somehow reached this length in only a year.
- Red Baron: Repeatedly referred to as "Detective Prince" in her TV interview prior to her kidnapping.
- Samus Is a Girl: In a bit of a switch, rather than find this out after she rescues them, they find out when they come to rescue her.
- Shame If Something Happened: Naoto notes that it would be a terrible shame if Namatame escaped through the large television set in his hospital room. Then again, there's the not entirely unwelcome possibility that he wouldn't be able to get out of it and be left at the mercy of the Shadows.
- Shout-Out: Her Shadow looks like Kikaider combined with Astro Boy while wearing Mazinger Z's Scrander.
- Chie compared her to (in the Japanese version) Kindaichi, protagonist of a famous line of detective novels, or (in the English version) to Raidou Kuzunoha.
- Her ultimate Persona in Golden is a reference to Oscar from Rose of Versailles, which ties into Naoto's character.
- She Cleans Up Nicely: If Yu chooses to spend Christmas Eve with Naoto, she will end up wearing the female school uniform to the date. She also sports a new, more feminine look in the Golden's new ending sequence. There is also the fact that by the time Persona X Detective comes, Naoto has really long hair, making her look more girly.
- Shut Up, Hannibal!: Throws these out at every boss battle she's involved in, though she always gets a Shut Up, Kirk! thrown right back at her.
- Shrinking Violet: Covertly; only when she is being romanced by the Protagonist or otherwise needs to justify being a girl to everyone else, hence she's also a Shy Blue-Haired Girl.
- Also when she enters the Beauty Contest. She's so cute she wins the contest despite never showing up for the swimsuit portion.
- Single-Target Sexuality: She's completely turned off by the idea of romance, or completely oblivious when it comes to Kanji. Despite this, she does fall for the Protagonist if her romance is pursued.
- The Smart Girl: Once she joins the Investigation, it actually begins to make some progress on discovering who the culprit is and other unanswered questions.
- Shorter Means Smarter: She's the smallest playable character and is the brains of the team.
- Just how smart is she? She figures out that Morooka's murder is a copycat crime, that people being shown on TV are potential victims, (which she deduced before the Investigation Team), that the disappearances are connected to the Serial Killer, and that your party is somehow rescuing the victims… and she does all this with the same limited evidence available to the Inaba police.
- Just how short is she? She's officially the shortest member of the team (only about 152 cm, or a little less than 5'00"), and it's pretty easy to notice even though she normally wears platform soles.
- Sixth Ranger: Of sorts. She's the final character to join, and before she did she had something of a rivalry with the Investigation Team.
- The Spock: Due to her training in the arts of the detective, Naoto is big on logic, facts and rational deduction over emotion, which is her primary contribution to the team; intelligence and well-reasoned, emotion-free deductions. As a side effect of this, she tends to use Spock Speak.
- Spotting the Thread: The only member of the team who sensed that there was something "off" in Adachi's behavior (particularly his "Then that settles it" slip, see Out-of-Character Alert).
- Stupid Sexy Flanders: Many women in the game itself agree that she's one hot babe.
- Sugar And Ice Girl: Usually very cold and aloof to strangers, but shows a much sweeter side of herself to her friends, especially to Yu over the course of her Social Link.
- Superpower Lottery: In The Golden, Naoto falls just short of having received the wild card in regards to what her Persona can do, as she can possess EVERY kind of magic except for most status effects and healing spells.
- An Ice Person: Developing her Social Link grants access to Bufudyne.
- Blow You Away: Starts with Garudyne.
- Casting a Shadow/Light 'em Up: Has access to both Mudo and Hama spells. Unfortunately, as these are mana-expensive, low-accuracy spells that don't work on any bosses (due to being Instant Kills), and which many stronger shadows resist, absorb or reflect, this means her arsenal is full of Useless Useful Spells. It's alleviated somewhat in Golden, due to the other tropes here.
- Infinity+1 Element: Naoto has access to the Megido family of spells and is the only party member (save for Yu) that can learn them on their own.
- No Sell: Gains Tetrakarn, Makarakarn, and Tetraja, which negate physical, magical, and instant death attacks respectively. Her unique skill, Shield of Justice stops nearly everything from hitting all party members once. MP drain and multiple hits will get through though. Higher versions of her Persona also gain immunity to Fire, Hama, and Mudo, to protect her from any reflected attempts she would make. Angelic Grace grants her exceptional evasion against all magics except Almighty.
- Playing with Fire: The Golden adds fire spells to Naoto's default arsenal, as she was supposed to be the party's second fire user (noticeable in her Shadow's resistance to fire).
- Poisonous Person: One of her few physical skills, Blight, can inflict poison on all enemies in addition to it's already high damage.
- Shock and Awe: Developing her Social Link grants access to Ziodyne.
- Status Buff: Gains Heat Riser through Social links, which grants any one character increased attack, defense, evasion, and accuracy.
- Sweet Polly Oliver: Though a girl, Naoto dresses in a very boyish fashion, so much so that the Investigation Team themselves didn't know she was a girl until they rescued her from her Shadow.
- Team Mom:
- Naoto's first action as a member of the Investigation Team? Get the party to the hospital for check-ups. No idea what that TV World could do to you, after all. And after that, she helps the team properly deduct things that the player may have realized a few months ago.
- The Animation adds a scene where she helps a depressed Nanako get back on her feet after giving up hope on figuring out what Yu was doing all summer. She wasn't even on the team yet, and she was already looking after Nanako.
- She's also the only one on the party besides the protagonist who has a chance at cooking anything properly.
- Tomboy: In particular:
- Bifauxnen: To the point where Kanji is immensely relieved to find out she's a girl. She is also the only character who has a Persona of the opposite sex.
- Bokukko: When you max out her Social Link, she asks you whether it's okay for you if she keeps referring to herself as "boku" (a low-pitched voice in the English version). If you say that you would like her to stop (or to use her natural, more feminine voice), she would actually come to the Christmas date in a schoolgirl uniform (though she's still not really used to it)!
- Tomboyish Name: Even called out by her Shadow.
- One of the Boys: She pretty much grew up like a boy, never caring for dolls and dresses, but more for action figures and boyish stuff. This is reflected in her dungeon, which is designed like the lair of a tokusatsu villain. (She doesn't look down on the other girls for being more feminine, though.)
- Transfer Student Uniforms: Sort of. After transferring to Yasogami, she is always wearing that school's uniform — the male version — even after her real gender is made public.
- Nonuniform Uniform: While not immediately obvious, her uniform isn't even the standard male uniform. She mentions once that she had her's custom made to fit her with some extra modifications but not what those were.
- Unmanly Secret: An Inverted Trope in that she's an ace detective who desperately wants to prove herself in a male-dominated profession, to the point of posing as a boy and not showing her girlier traits to anyone.
- Vocal Evolution: Subverted in the anime. After The Reveal, Romi Park's tone switches to a slightly more feminine tone of voice... and almost immediately reverts to the usual deep tone.
- What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Played for Laughs during the ski trip. After Teddie is caught having turned out the lights, pretending to be a ghost, and eating the food she and the other girls corner him with Naoto telling him that only people have human rights.
- What the Hell, Hero?: The Investigation Team's response to her Batman Gambit.
- Wholesome Crossdresser: To the point where Naoto only appears in female clothing when wearing a schoolgirl uniform for the Christmas date.
- Wrench Wench: Of the electronics variety. As a child she made and modified several spy gadgets, including Gadget Watches. After joining she also makes a pair of watches that, in a limited range, tell the distance to the other, and at night can give you a machine that restores SP.
- Yaoi Fangirl: Not normally, but if you spend time at night with her in February she'll mention that Valentine's Day is near and complain that girls keep asking her what kind of chocolate she likes, despite most of them already knowing she's also female. It's possible for the MC to commiserate, and she'll be surprised and make a comment to the effect of being pre-occupied with this idea.