Voiced by: Mitsuki Saiga (JP - drama CD), Yuu Kobayashi (JP - anime), Darrel Guilbeau (EN)
Portrayed by: Toshiki Seto (drama series)
Satoko's older brother, who disappeared a year before the story began.
- Affectionate Gesture to the Head: Often did this to Satoko and Shion, the latter stunned at herself for how easily such a simple gesture made her fall for him, and somewhat developed feelings for Keiichi when he imitated this behavior.
- Big Brother Instinct: Subverted - while he was very protective of Satoko, a repressed part of him was also tired of protecting her from their aunt and hearing her constant whining.
- Bishōnen: Quite handsome along with Keiichi.
- Chekhov M.I.A.: For most of the story, no one has any idea of where Satoshi disappeared to the night of the Cotton-Drifting Festival. In the Matsuribayashi-hen, Shion discovers Satoshi is in a coma in Irie's clinic and he'll need to stay like that at least until there's a real cure for the Hinamizawa Syndrome. He actually recovers in Miotsukushi's epilogue.
- Chekhov's Gunman: His disappearance is a major part of what sets off the killers in three of the four question arcs fueling Keiichi's paranoia (Onikakushi), Shion's grief (Watanagashi and Meakashi) and Keiichi's protectiveness (Tataragoroshi).
- Color Blind Confusion: Shion was partly amused and partly exasperated by his inability to distinguish broccoli from cauliflower.
- Dumb Blonde: A rare male example. Satoshi has a reputation for being somewhat air-headed and unfocused.
- Family Theme Naming: Satoshi, older brother of Satoko (though the kanji are completely different).
- Foreshadowing: From Frederica Bernkastel's poem in Meakashi-hen: "How many years will pass before she wonders if she really dropped them?"
- Freak Out: The day of the Watanagashi festival in 1982, Satoshi finally snaps and murders his aunt to prevent her from abusing him and Satoko any further. He fulfills his plan to buy Satoko a giant stuffed bear for her birthday, but as Irie is driving him home, the last of his sanity is finally shed and he begins to hallucinate and see his aunt's face in nearby drivers and pedestrians. This forces Irie to take him to the clinic and begin treating him for Level 5 Hinamizawa Syndrome.
- Ill Boy: According to Dr. Irie, his mental and physical health is slowly declining from all the stress both in and out of home.
- Image Song: "Yellowsick". Ironically, he has one of the most energetic and hot-blooded image songs of the cast.
- Jerkass Ball: As his emotional and physical health decline, he quits the Hinamizawa Fighters and becomes bitter toward Mion (actually Shion), as his contempt toward her family spreads to her despite all the time they'd spent bonding. When Shion later starts beating Satoko for being overly dependent, he assumes that she's just taking part in the village's discrimination against them, despite later admitting that she'd never done so.
- Knight Templar Big Brother: He killed his aunt in order to protect Satoko. In large part it was due to Hinamizawa syndrome, though.
- The Lost Lenore: His disappearance causes no small amount of grief for Shion. In Meakashi, it makes her go crazy.
- Nice Guy: Usually nice and kindhearted, even moreso than Keiichi.
- Present Absence: Satoshi went missing a year before Keiichi moved to Hinamizawa. The mystery of what happened to him and how his disappearance affects the emotional state of his little sister Satoko and Shion who loved him are prominent elements in the tragedies of almost all arcs.
- Promotion to Parent: Satoshi steadily becomes more and more of a caretaker to his sister, almost from the time she was born. Satoko has trouble bonding with the men her mother meets and emotionally pushes them away, resulting in Satoshi trying to serve as mediator. When both of their parents die and they wind up in the care of their abusive aunt and uncle, Satoshi is forced to endure their abuse and constantly come to Satoko's rescue.
- Sanity Slippage: A notable aversion. Despite the stress of everything that's going wrong in his life, Satoshi is remarkably adept at keeping up appearances, with only his coach, Irie, knowing how much he's suffering. When he finally snaps, it is not in small measures, but in one sudden outburst.
- Technicolor Eyes: Pink.
- Trauma Conga Line: Satoshi's mother falls in and out of relationships constantly, resulting in emotional trauma for Satoko (and likely Satoshi too) that eventually makes her refuse to trust in anyone but her brother. Then their parents come out in support of the dam project, resulting in the entire village ostracizing the whole family. Then their parents wind up dead in an accident. Then Satoshi and Satoko wind up in the care of an abusive aunt and uncle and Satoko's emotional outbursts start getting worse. Satoshi, worn to exhaustion with school and a part time job, confides in his coach that he feels his emotional and physical strength crumbling. He finally snaps, murders his aunt, and is overcome by Level 5 Hinamizawa Syndrome.
- Verbal Tic: He often utters "Muu~" when troubled.
- Would Hit a Girl: He hits Shion, although justified since he did it to save his sister Satoko from her beatings. He also bludgeoned his aunt to death.
Voiced by: Chafurin (JP), Joe DiMucci (EN, Bang Zoom), Mark Stoddard (EN, Funimation)
Portrayed by: Tetta Sugimoto (film), Shinobu Tsuruta (drama series)
A veteran police investigator at Okinomiya who has vowed to solve the mystery of the Hinamizawa murders before his retirement, due to personal reasons. Due to his uncouth tactics and the lengths that he goes to in order to solve the mystery, he is looked upon as a nuisance by the villagers. He approaches one of the main characters to become his informant in several arcs, and is sometimes unwittingly responsible for triggering their paranoia.
- Ax-Crazy: Normally, he's the opposite of this trope throughout the entire series. But in Gou, he somehow comes down with L5 Hinamizawa Syndrome, and goes on a murderous rampage gunning down everyone at the festival. Satoko also turns him into one in Sotsu, which ends similarly, only this time he also dies once Satoko reveals her true colors by shooting him in the head.
- Adaptational Jerkass: In-Universe example; In Onikakushi-hen and Watanagashi-hen; he's a pleasant person to talk to Keiichi and gives helpful infos to him about Hinamizawa and the mysterious incidents but in Tatarigoroshi-hen, he's a downright asshole who never hesitates to squeeze Keiichi's shoulders literally painful enough to intimidate him and as he interrogates Keiichi while his fellow men dig up Teppei's corpse in the forest, he throws muddy waters on him to force the truth out of him. Keiichi wishes he dies which is by coincidence granted as he suddenly disappears as he rescues Satoko.
- Adaptational Villainy: In Gou, under the paranoia-induced influence of the Hinamizawa Syndrome, he goes on a rampage and shoots everyone to death at the festival, with the exception of Rena.
- Batter Up!: In Gou, he goes L5 at the end of Tataridamashi and beats Rika to death with a bat.
- Cry Laughing: In Matsuribayashi when he learns that the Sonozakis have nothing to with the annual murders, relieving his animosity toward them.
- Dirty Cop: Ooishi isn't normally this in the regular timelines, but when he comes down with Hinamizawa Syndrome in Gou/Sotsu, he becomes far more unscrupulous to get to the culprits who he thinks are behind the annual murders of Hinamizawa, playing both sides in the war between the village and Teppei and escalating the situation and then later shooting up the Watanagashi festival in Tataridamashi/Tatariakashi-hen.
- Dirty Old Man: It's more apparent in the manga and VNs, but he really does have a strong interest in porn, gentleman's clubs, and brothels.
- Drinking on Duty: Ooishi's carefree attitude on the job does have him indulge in a drink every so often. He drinks with the thugs he arrests in Chapter 4 of Watangashi."Beer is best when you drink on the job!"
- Fire-Forged Friends: With Akasaka after the events of Himatsubushi-hen. They start of not thinking much of each other, but after going through a dangerous fight to rescue the Minister's grandson from kidnappers together they become quite good friends.
- Foil: Old, perverted, and usually implementing a very signature brand of Obfuscating Stupidity, to Akasaka's more young, straightlaced, and straightforward persona. He also foils a little bit against Kumagai, his relatively straightlaced assistant who is much calmer and better at negotiation, whereas Ooishi intentionally puts people off with his brash attitude.
- Gallows Humor: There's a bit of an on-going dark joke between Ooishi and anybody he has visiting to investigate the Tomitake murder where he'll end a conversation with, "Have a nice year!" in reference to the serial Watanagashi murders. It shows up repeatedly in the Onikakushi-hen TIPS.
- Inspector Javert: He's usually right, though, like in Tatarigoroshi-hen and Onisarashi-hen. But he's completely wrong in the most important way in that he thinks the Sonozakis are behind everything. This keeps him from approaching the only person in the group that never goes insane.
- Intergenerational Friendship: With Asakasa in Himatsubushi-hen and Keiichi in Minagoroshi-hen.
- Knight of Cerebus: In most arcs, he signals the end of comedy, or a sharper dive into tragedy, not always in his first appearance, but in his first confrontation with the arc's protagonist. Lampshaded by Dr. Irie.
- Played with in Gou, where he's directly responsible for at least one of the tragedies taking place. Case in point, in Tataridamashi-hen when it finally seems like things are starting to get better, he goes crazy and shoots everyone to death at the festival.
- It's Personal: The dam construction manager who was the first murder victim was a Mentor to him. Once he finds out he was murdered and suspects the Sonozakis of it, he becomes determined to crack the case. However, as noted, this actually works against him because he starts looking for links between events that just aren't there, which impedes his effectiveness.
- The Last Dance: Although not dying, Ooishi is coming up on his mandatory retirement age and is slated to leave the police force within a year. The summer of 1983 represents his final chance to solve the mystery of Oyashiro-sama's curse before his imminent move to Hokkaido to be near his elderly mother.
- Leitmotif: "Big Bear". Also, "Dancers 5" in Himatsubushi.
- Mentor Archetype: The "old man". Ooishi's father died in a bombing just after the end of World War II, and Ooishi spent the few years after that reluctantly arresting starving people who bought rice on the black market. While he was chasing one, a guy who looked just like his father punched him and scolded him in front of everyone. He started to consider that man as a second father.
- Mr. Exposition: Ooishi has been investigating the murders from before the game started and as such fills Keiichi (and the audience) in on numerous details of the case and Hinamizawa's history.
- My Greatest Failure: His inability to solve the Hinamizawa murders and the eventual disaster that almost inevitably befalls the village serves as this for Ooishi in most of the endings.
- Never the Obvious Suspect: Invariably, if Ooishi winds up in close contact with someone in an arc, that person will either succumb to psychotic madness and go on a killing spree in short order or, in the case of Tatarigoroshi, will have already begun their descent into insanity. Minagoroshi even highlights this as an obvious pattern. As it turns out, this is simply coincidence and Ooishi is not, in fact, responsible for any aspect of Hinamizawa Syndrome.
- "Not So Different" Remark: In Tsumihoroboshi-hen, the narration notes that the way that Ooishi operates is actually pretty similar to the stereotypes of the Yakuza, embodied in the story by his Arch Enemies, the Sonozaki family.
- Obfuscating Stupidity: His drawling accent, casual manner and crude humor put people off their guard. Unfortunately, it makes him come off as arrogant and causes distrust in him.
- Odd Friendship: With Keiichi in Minagoroshi-hen and Akane Sonozaki in Matsuribayashi.
- OOC Is Serious Business: In Gou he comes down with L5 of the Hinamizawa Syndrome and goes on a murderous rampage, which has not happened in any of the arcs throughout the entire series.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: In most of the arcs, he acts as a fairly reasonable police investigator even if he goes around spreading suspicions on those involved in the murderers.
- Red Herring: Whenever he contacts someone in the main group one-on-one, they either will go or already are going insane (Keiichi in Onikakushi and Tatarigoroshi, Shion in Meakashi, and Rena in Tsumihoroboshi), which makes him an obvious candidate as the force behind the Curse of Oyashiro-sama. This is actually a false lead, meant to draw attention away from the *other* constant trend in the stories: that Tomitake and Takano always die the exact same time and way, which is the actual clue to the real mastermind.
- Retirony: In the arcs where he is killed, due to the short time limit that he has to solve the case before he retires.
- Right for the Wrong Reasons: In Episode 11 of Sotsu he accuses Satoko for being behind the Curse. Which is entirely correct, but only for this year and not for the overall incidents he's thinking of.
- Signature Laugh: Nfufufufu!
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: He doesn't realize it, but his actions frequently wind up just making a given arc worse and making it so that there's really no one sane left for Rika to get help from. Particularly egregious in Onikakushi-hen, where he's arguably the cause of Keiichi going off the deep end, but he also exacerbates Keiichi's and Rena's jumps off the cliff in Tatarigoroshi-hen and Tsumihoroboshi-hen, no matter how much help he might turn into near the end of the latter. And his consistent mistrust of the Sonozakis makes it impossible for anyone to trust the one reliably sane person in the group. Rika expresses contempt for him and Takano (even before learning that the latter is the Big Bad) in Minagoroshi-hen for constantly triggering her friends' paranoia.
Voiced by: Toru Okawa (JP), Kyle Hebert (EN, Bang Zoom), John Burgmeier (EN, Funimation)
Portrayed by: Masashi Taniguchi (film), Yuuma Ishigaki (drama series)
A freelance photographer who comes to Hinamizawa occasionally. He gets along well with Miyo Takano because of their similar interests in photography. Despite being only an occasional visitor, he seems to know a fair amount about Hinamizawa's past. Ooishi and the police are suspicious of his identity.
In the first six arcs, he is consistently found dead of suicide on the night of Watanagashi, triggering many of the events that follow.
- Adaptational Ugliness: His facial features are slightly more weathered in Gou.
- Afraid of Needles: He always averts his gaze from injections, leaving him oblivious to Takano faking his inoculation to Hinamizawa syndrome.
- Clawing at Own Throat: In most of the arcs, he claws his throat out the night of the Watanagashi Festival due to being injected with H173.
- Curtains Match the Window: He has brown hair to go with his brown eyes.
- Designated Victim: Like Takano, in most arcs, he is found dead on the night of Watanagashi.
- Embarrassing Nickname: Irie calls him "Risa-san" As a subversion, this conveniently serves to hide their connections to the reader in the early arcs.
- Foreshadowing: He can hear Hanyu's fuss in the shrine storage. Meaning that he was already at least at level 4 of the Hinamizawa syndrome at that time.
- Friendly Sniper: He's a good guy who is also a skilled sniper.
- The Gunslinger: He's a veteran sniper.
- Improbable Aiming Skills: Called out on this by the Mountain Hounds when sniping on a moving vehicle while on rough terrain.
- Informed Deformity: He is visibly ripped, yet in Matsuribayashi-hen, Takano views him as plain looking with a bit of a belly.
- Mr. Fanservice: Is shown as being ripped; the first episode of the Rei OVA has him shirtless due to it being the Pool Episode of the anime, and he even stops a missile with his pecs.
- Nice Guy: His most defining trait is just how kind he is.
- Official Couple: He's dating Miyo Takano.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: It's mentioned in several arcs that Jirō Tomitake is not his real name, but we never learn what it is.
- Weapon of Choice: Camera. "TOMITAKE FLASH!!!!" His weapon is actually a sniper rifle.
- We Hardly Knew Ye: He usually dies too early to get any kind of development.
Miyo Takano/Miyoko Tanashi
Voiced by: Miki Ito (JP), Fuyuka Oura (JP - young), Karen Strassman (EN, Bang Zoom), Mallorie Rodak (EN, Funimation), Sarah Wiedenheft (EN - young, Funimation)
Portrayed by: Ayako Kawahara (film), Rie Kitahara (drama series)
A nurse at the village clinic who has a keen interest in Hinamizawa's past and culture, recording all her speculation in notebooks. At times, her storytelling can be very mysterious and chilling, and she seems to enjoy putting people on edge. Unlike the other villagers, she opposes the almighty Oyashiro-sama.
In the first six arcs, she consistently disappears on the night of Watanagashi, and an incinerated body thought to be hers is found in the mountains.
- Anti-Villain: An interesting take on a Type II. Exposing the truth about the Hinamizawa Syndrome for the sake of her adopted Grandfather's legacy, someone whom she viewed as a savior, is hardly what you could call "evil." But with the abuse she took in the Orphanage of Fear before being adopted and the subsequent repeated brushing off of her Grandfather's research, desperation and insanity take hold and drive her to do gradually less savory acts in pursuit of her goal.
- Attack! Attack! Attack!: Lampshaded in a serious manner. She keeps sending in the Yamainu to attack an entrenched enemy on their territory no matter how many casualties they take nor how demoralized they are. Any sensible commander would have done a tactical retreat to regroup at the very least.
- Being Tortured Makes You Evil: The consequence of being tortured into pretty much insanity in the Orphanage of Fear from her childhood. It's heavily implied that she suffers from severe PTSD as a result.
- Big Bad: Is revealed to be this toward the end.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: She's a nurse who acts kind and pleasant on the surface until it was revealed that she is the main villain responsible for much of the chaos in the story.
- Break the Cutie: Her backstory in a nutshell. She Used to Be a Sweet Kid, and then was made to undergo Hell that no child should have to suffer through.
- Broken Bird: Everyone who supported her in her life died - first her parents, in a train accident; then her grandfather, in suicide due to the onset of senility; and finally Koizumi, from old age. Koizumi's death also put a 3-year deadline on her research because nobody else was taking it seriously, after which it would vanish into obscurity. This twisted her personality and psyche, making her ready to do anything to prove her grandfather's thesis.
- Complexity Addiction: She's aware that her decoy corpse is a day too old given when she was last seen in public, but decides to use it anyway to make things more mysterious even though it could spoil her plans. By the time the body's time of death comes up, the arc's protagonist is often too shaken up by other events to think about it rationally, and will come to odd conclusions like coming back from the dead or alien clones.
- Criminal Mind Games: A somewhat strange example. In Tsumihoroboshi, she gives an increasingly-unstable Rena a book of notes for the girl to pore over. These notes, somewhat surprisingly, contain some accurate details about what's actually going on in Hinamizawa (like the Okonogi Gardeners not being who they seem, or the fact that Hinamizawa Syndrome is being researched in the Irie Clinic) - details that Takano, as the plan's mastermind, knew were true. However, the books also contain a significant number of wildly inaccurate statements and also serve as one of the triggers that cause Rena to succumb to Hinamizawa Syndrome. Given that Takano had nothing to gain from making Rena fall into psychosis, it appears she simply did this to amuse herself while she waited for the right time to enact her plan.
- Deadly Doctor: Although she's always one of the first two victims of Watanagashi, she isn't quite so helpless as you'd think. Especially since she isn't really a victim. Plus, her weapons of choice in Higurashi Daybreak are syringes.
- Designated Victim: Like Tomitake, in most arcs she goes missing on the night of Watanagashi, and is later found dead. Subverted, since she was faking her death.
- Determinator: A villainous example. Takano is so traumatized by her youth, so grateful to her grandfather for saving her, and so agonized by the disrespect to his work, that she resolves she will make the world see his brilliance, thus immortalizing him forever. Her will to do this is so strong and unbreakable, it drives the entire plot and it takes virtually the entirety of the cast, along with a few strokes of good fortune, to stop her. After learning that she's the Big Bad, Hanyuu reluctantly acknowledges that her strong will that made most of the arcs go her way puts her near the realm of godhood.
- Dissonant Serenity: To contrast all other infected ones.
- Drowning My Sorrows: After she learns that the research will be stopped, indicating that she has crossed the Despair Event Horizon.
- Early-Bird Cameo: Right near the start of the very first chapter of the game, Onikakushi, you come across Miyo when Rena and Mion are showing Keiichi around Hinamizawa. She's simply mentioned as the third of three people (along with two extras) the trio run into who is named and briefly described by the girls to demonstrate how everyone in Hinamizawa know all about everyone else- she doesn't even make an on-screen appearance or have any lines ascribed to her. Except in the manga version, where she does make a physical appearance.
- Easily Forgiven: By Tomitake in the realities where he lives, even though she attempted to kill him. Seeing her in a defeated, pathetic state probably helps, it's difficult to hate someone in that position. Not to mention that Tomitake is more aware of Takano's sad past and motivations than other characters.
- Epileptic Trees: A perpetrator of these In-Universe. They range from the clearly correct (the prevalence of the "oni" character in the Sonozaki and Kimiyoshi family names), to the plausible but unprovable (the possible alternate spelling of "Oyashiro"), to the clearly insane (a UFO crashed in the swamp and Oyashiro was an alien doctor!). These trees are her tactic of choice in her trolling the cast.
- Even Evil Can Be Loved: To prove her grandfather's research, she kills Rika's parents, Tomitake, and the entire Hinamizawa village in many fragments. Despite this, her boyfriend Tomitake loves her deeply and is determined to help Takano start anew with a better life once her plans are ruined in Matsuribayashi-hen.
- Evil Laugh: Like most of the characters, she gets one at some point. A truly epic one when she's revealed to be the Big Bad.
- Evil Wears Black: When she's revealed to be the main villain, Takano wears a completely black military uniform due to her position as a major of the Tokyo organization.
- Faking the Dead: She fakes her death in each arc on the night of the Watanagashi festival in order to divert attention away from her plot to kill Rika and enact Emergency Manual 34. While the burned corpse is identified as her through dentition, careful examination reveals that it's just a day too old for when she was last seen, though shit has usually hit the fan by the time anyone figures this out.
- For Science!: While Irie has taken some questionable actions (namely dissections of living peoples' brains), he at least genuinely wants to solve mental disorders. Takano actually just cares about the research itself building fame over anyone benefiting from it.
- Freudian Excuse: The reason shes so adamant about opposing Oyashiro-sama? After losing her parents, she had to live in a hellish Orphanage of Fear. She was rescued from the orphanage and raised by a loving, kindly old man and now wants to prove his research, no matter what. Unfortunately, the trauma she already had from the orphanage led to her taking a few things that her grandfather said the wrong way, which, combined with people treating her grandfather's thesis as garbage, as well as her underlying selfishness and 'us-vs-them' mentality, led to her becoming a heartless monster.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: From sweet kid to Break the Cutie to friendly but detached nurse to sociopathic, murderous researcher.
- Genre Blindness: Boy, does she ever catch a case of it in the end. Alluded to in Attack! Attack! Attack! above, while the entrenched enemy in question is a group of schoolchildren, they also happen to be the protagonists. Who also have a sort-of-Physical God on their side whom Takano had actually met with and thus KNEW would be acting against her at the start of the arc. Failure to acknowledge any of this leads to her downfall.
- Godhood Seeker: The end of Minagoroshi-hen. Specifically, it was influenced by a metaphor from her grandfather, saying that if his research proves fruitful his legacy will live forever, like that of a god. Fast-forward to modern-day and Miyo raves about how if she proves her grandfather's research is true, and re-inspires fear of Oyashiro-sama in the process, she will in effect become Oyashiro-sama and live forever with her grandpa.
- Good Eyes, Evil Eyes: One of the indicators that she's not the innocent victim she appears to be.
- Green-Eyed Monster: In the climax of Miotsukushi, he starts spewing hatred at Rika for being seen as divine from birth as Oyashiro-sama's reincarnation while she and her grandfather had to claw their way up just to try getting such reverence.
- Happily Adopted: After some very nasty experiences at her Orphanage of Fear, she was adopted by Hifumi Takano and was able to live a relatively happy life with him until he died. Unfortunately the trauma from her time at the orphanage eventually caught up with her, and she became willing to go to extreme methods to continue her adopted grandfather's research...
- Hates Being Alone: Her desire to immortalize herself and her grandfather is out of a pathological desire to never be alone again. She also tries to keep Tomitake on her side as her plans commence, even desperately offering herself from head to toe in Matsuribayashi, because she knows that the Yamainu and Nomura only have financial interest in her.
- HeelFace Turn: But only at the very end of the series. And in later arcs she continues to terrorize the heroes.
- Episode 17 of Gou has Takano doing this at the beginning, where she tearfully begs for Rika's forgiveness stating she planned to kill her and her friends but, for some unspecified reason, she has given up her plan and is going to testify against the faction of Tokyo that planned to start the Hinamizawa Disaster.
- Hero Killer: She's the one killing Rika in most timelines, setting off the Great Hinamizawa Disaster to preemptively stop the supposed resulting Level 5 outbreak. Minagoroshi-hen in particular has her personally killing the entire Club shortly beforehand.
- Hospital Hottie: Her outfit consists of a really short skirt and a pair of high black stockings. Rare evil example, at that.
- Image Song: "Bon Karma".
- Ironic Echo: Not exactly a quote, but the scene near the end of Matsuribayashi-hen where her bullet misses Hanyu very closely echoes the scene near the beginning of the arc where "God"'s lightning bolt narrowly misses Takano, immediately after she asks God to either give her a better life or kill her. Since she was spared, she took this as a sign that she is meant to live, and as a result, she became something of a Determinator. It can be interpreted that her bullet missing Hanyu is a sign that Rika and Hanyu's determination to live has finally reached the same level as Miyo's will to live on that day. However, it didn't miss on purpose. Although the anime does not show this, Hanyu stops time and realizes that the bullet won't miss. Then Rika starts moving, despite time being stopped, and grabs the bullet, moving it so that it won't hit anyone.
- Karma Houdini: She tries to kill an entire village over and over again, and what does she get? Treatment for a disease that it wasn't well-established she had (though current evidence points to yes) and a good cry in her lover's arms. While in that chapter she didn't manage to kill anyone, she's still responsible for the death of Rika's parents and generally being an amoral researcher. It's particularly egregious in the worlds where Rika fails, Takano succeeds in murdering everyone in Hinamizawa, and she gets away with it scot-free aside from possibly dying of her own free will as part of the cover-up. It actually makes sense in context a bit with Hanyu offering to forgive Takano of all her sins. Then she tries to kill Hanyu.
- The author's notes at the end of the last VN actually invokes this, with the author saying that he had gotten tired of stories where the Big Bad being punished wraps everything up, which is also reflected in Takano's monologue about how the world always seeks to find a scapegoat to pin blame upon and how all conflicts need a "loser" in order to be resolved. Takano is spared in order to reject this nihilistic view and to end the cycle of suffering for everyone, including her who suffered greatly before turning to villainy.
- Kick the Morality Pet: She genuinely loves Tomitake and isn't really eager to kill him, but that never stops her from making him the victim of "Oyashiro-sama's curse" in all the fragments.
- Kick the Son of a Bitch: As much of a genocidal bitch she is at the end of Minagoroshi. In Miotsukushi Omote, in the woods, she doesn't hesitate to inject Teppei with the vaccine H170 to make his brain induce the L5 of the Hinamizawa Syndrome after he was expelled out of the Hōjō residence by Keiichi, Rika, Akasaka, and Ooishi which is justified as his physical abuse towards Satoko reminds her of the same ordeal she went through with the cruel director of the orphanage she was sent to.
- Love Makes You Evil: Familial love example. Takano loves her adoptive grandfather more than anything in the world and couldn't forgive society for ridiculing his research to the point he was pushed into commiting suicide. Proving her grandfather's research and being immortalized with his memory are the primary motivators behind her going to inhuman extremes in her Hinamizawa Syndrome research, culminating in her planning the massacre of the Hinamizawa village.
- Love Redeems: Implied by the ending of Matsuribayashi-hen. Takano's plans are ruined and she's going to be arrested, but Tomitake steps in by declaring Takano needs to take treatment for the Hinamizawa Syndrome. Even though he knows Takano was going to kill him, Tomitake tells Takano he's going to help her reform and start again.
- Woman Behind the Man: To the Sonozaki family, the Yamainu, and the false image of Oyashiro-sama she created.
- Manipulative Bitch: The biggest in the series. She manipulates Keiichi, Rena, and Shion with both her scrapbooks, the Oyashiro Curse and faked her own death in order for them to succumb to Level 5 and throw a giant suspicion on the Sonozaki Family.
- Meaningful Rename: After being adopted by Hifumi Takano, she changes the kanji in her name to follow his Numerical Theme Naming. She later changed the "Taka" in his surname meaning "high" to a homonymous kanji meaning "hawk" so him being her motivation wouldn't be as obvious.
- Mentor Archetype: Her main role in the story before being revealed as the Big Bad is to inform the heroes of the legends of Hinamizawa and help them in defeating the conspiracy.
- Milkman Conspiracy: Big Bad or not she's still just a nurse when it comes down to it.
- Moral Myopia: She's motivated by devotion to her adoptive grandfather, yet complains about Irie's shaky support for her plans and outright kills Rika's mother for opposing her experiments on Rika, viewing their familial attachments as a nuisance.
- Ms. Fanservice: She's a fairly attractive woman with ample assets who wears a few revealing outfits, such as her nurse outfit. She also Sleeps in the Nude and wears a Barely-There Swimwear during the Beach Episode. This makes the fact she's the Big Bad all the more shocking.
- Naughty Nurse Outfit: Irie once notes that since she is a doctor she isn't supposed to wear a nurse outfit (with an impressive Zettai Ryouiki to boot), but she does just for the hell of it. Mion and Shion also tease her and Tomitake about their "foreplay" with that kind of outfit.
- Nay-Theist: She studies myths, religion, and the occult, but doesn't actually believe in any of them. In fact, she hates the local god Oyashiro-sama and will do anything to bring them down, in part because of her Dark and Troubled Past. In Matsuribayashi, she notes the irony that she denies Oyashiro-sama yet has no doubt about Hanyuu's identity when they meet face-to-face in front of the latter's shrine.
- Never a Self-Made Woman: She became devoted to her adoptive grandfather's research to repay him for saving her from an Orphanage of Fear. After his research was unfairly ridiculed, she became a top-tier doctor just to further his studies and salvage his reputation. She's willing to throw people's lives away and even weaponize the Syndrome as long as Hifumi's research is validated.
- Nice Hat: Her nurse's cap. Also, her epic special forces beret.
- Nightmare Fetishist: Her personal hobby is researching the spooky legends about Hinamizawa's demon heritage and the old rituals involving eating people, human sacrifices, and curses from the town's Evil God.
- Noblewoman's Laugh: Gets a classic one in the anime after her Godhood Seeker speech, yet it's somehow less disturbing than most of the protagonists' laughs.
- Not Me This Time: Gou presents an interesting take on the trope: she readily admits to Rika that she was intending on killing her and her friends as part of her plan, but she ended up getting cold feet and opting to turn herself in. In her stead, the main villain turns out to be a looping Satoko who was receiving outside help from a supernatural source.
- Not Quite the Right Thing: Just before the Final Operation, she realizes that because of her obstination to continue the research on Hinamizawa Syndrome, instead of staying in history, her grandfather's research is going to be erased and forgotten, whether a cure is found or the Manual 34 is implemented. She is the only one who regrets it though.
- Numerical Theme Naming: The kanji for her name uses the kanji for three (三) and four (四). Just like how her adoptive grandfather's name is written as one (一), two (二), three (三).
- Official Couple: She's dating Tomitake.
- Orphan's Ordeal: She was sent to an Orphanage of Fear after her parents died, witnessing and suffering lots of horrors there. She got so throughly broken that she went insane and became the Big Bad with time.
- Plucky Girl: Enough will to alter fate itself.
- Properly Paranoid: Midway through Matsuribayashi, she admits to Tomitake that the Yamainu are only as loyal as she pays them, and Nomura just took advantage of her while she was vulnerable while seemingly not even giving her real name, so Tomitake is probably the closest thing to an ally that she actually has. Sure enough, the Yamainu were actually bought out long ago by Nomura, who never truly cared about the validity of her research and just wants her dead as a scapegoat when the operation to kill Rika fails. It's Tomitake who steps in at the end to save her and offer another chance at life.
- Psychopathic Womanchild: Despite many characters describing her as a mature adult woman working as a nurse for the Irie clinic, her personality is actually frighteningly childish when she mutters a lot of dark and scary subjects about Hinamizawa to everyone that most of them never asks for. Her traumatic childhood shown in Matsuribayashi chapter would have shaped her into who she is now.
- Smite Me, O Mighty Smiter: She challenges God to give her a better life or kill her. A subsequent lightning bolt narrowly misses her.
- Softspoken Sadist: She enjoys making people uncomfortable in casual conversation, typically with her lurid fascination with the curse. Soon after introducing herself to Keiichi, she advises him to come to her clinic so she can give him BIG shot foreshadowing her Playing with Syringes and other overt sadism.
- Stepford Smiler: Unstable type. She isn't as sane and friendly as her affable smiles would make others think.
- Tears of Remorse: In the Gou anime, Takano cries as she confesses to Rika that she was planning to kill her and her friends until she decided to give up for some unexplained reason.
- Took a Level in Kindness: Her first full appearance in Gou shows Takano doing everything she can to atone for the actions she was going to take against Rika and the others, and even begs for Rika's forgiveness. Tomitake explains Takano has revealed Tokyo's plans to cause the Hinamizawa Disaster and is testifying against the faction that would've caused it all. Though when Rika asks why Takano changed her mind, Takano vaguely states Rika wouldn't believe her.
- Trauma Button: After watching Hifumi's research getting mocked and desecrated, she'll essentially revert to a crying child whenever she relives the experience.
- Troll: She manipulates several characters into going paranoid and berserk out of sheer amusement.
- The Unfettered: She is capable of doing pretty much anything, no matter how heinous, in order to prove her grandfather's thesis and "become a god".
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Whether it's intentional or not, she's partially responsible for causing Rena and Shion to go off the deep end by giving her the scrapbook.
- Used to Be a Sweet Kid: The sweet girl who collected flags and loved to go out with Dad and Mom? Yeah, she grew into a horrible bitch after she was tortured in the orphanage. Although she still was a sweet child when with Dr. Takano, and it's only after his death and his research is mocked that she goes off the deep end.
- Villain Protagonist: The Matsuribayashi-hen manga is ostensibly a prequel that follows her closely, chronicling how she became obsessed with the research on the Hinamizawa Syndrome, as well as how she was involved in every event leading up to the current arc resolution.
- Villainous Breakdown: Started in Matsuribayashi-hen when Rika was falsely reported as dead for 48 hours and it just got worse after she was beaten.
- Villain with Good Publicity: To most of Hinamizawa, shes a kindhearted nurse with a weird hobby. Shes actually the direct leader of the Milkman Conspiracy controlling the town.
- Walking Spoiler: Her past (and the fact that she is the Big Bad) makes her this.
- Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Her childhood at the orphanage was a living hell. The man who saved her was her kind adoptive grandfather. That's why she's going to prove his thesis about the Hinamizawa Syndrome and shut up the people who mocked her grandfather, being willing to have the entire Hinamizawa village massacred to achieve it.
- Would Hurt a Child: This woman disembowels a little girl after executing her friends in front of her.
Voiced by: Toshihiko Seki (JP), Dave Mallow (EN, Bang Zoom), Cody Savoie (EN, Funimation)
Portrayed by: Koutaro Tanaka (film), Tomohiro Kaku (drama series)
The head doctor of the village clinic. Initially interested in being a doctor just for the money, he became devoted to the field of psychosurgery after a head injury changed his father's personality. Despite his young age and the fact that he has a severe maid fetish, he is highly respected in the community. He cheerfully makes house calls and seems to truly care about everyone's health.
He has (half-jokingly) admitted that he wishes to marry Satoko when she is older, but is not above chasing after Rika when she is wearing one of the uniforms from the restaurant Angel Mort. In addition, he is the manager of the village's baseball little league team, the Hinamizawa Fighters.
- Bishōnen: He's noted to be quite good looking.
- Character Exaggeration: Him being a Comedic Lolicon is more pronounced in the anime adaptation. In the VN and manga he has an attraction to younger women and a Meido fetish, but he doesn't actively perv on the girls quite as much as in the anime.
- Comedic Lolicon: He tends to express an attraction towards Satoko (and sometimes Rika), and it's always Played for Laughs.
- Creepy Physical: To quote Irie, "It's good to be a doctor... because I get to touch the skin of young people many times, and I can turn them into my slaves with a little injection." Off-putting sense of humor for a doctor.
- Curtains Match the Window: He has brown hair and brown eyes.
- Deadly Doctor: He performed psychosurgery on unwilling patients in the past, although he had good intentions. Patient consent wasn't required at the time.
- Domestic Abuse: Figures a lot in Irie's backstory. After his father suffered a traumatic brain injury, he began to act abusive toward Irie's mother. The two ended up hating each other, a fact that Irie regrets. This serves as a major motivator for, among other things, joining work with Takano on Hinamizawa Syndrome.
- Driven to Suicide:
- In Outbreak, he hopelessly realizes that the parasite spread too fast and is infected himself so he Ate His Gun right in-front of Rika Furude.
- He's also claimed to have committed suicide near the end of Tatarigoroshi-hen, and by extension any arc in which the Great Hinamizawa Gas Disaster occurs. Given the circumstances explained in some of the later arcs, however, these are at least as likely to be cases of Never Suicide.
- Hospital Hottie: For a doctor, he's quite young and handsome.
- Large Ham: When he goes into a Keiichi-esque nonsensical rant about Maids in Matsuribayashi. In the middle of a life-or-death situation.
- Meido: His fetish. MAID IN HEAVEN!
- Nice Guy: Perverted tendencies asides, Irie is a compassionate doctor who cares about everyone's wellbeing and other than willing to find the cure for the Hinamizawa Syndrome, he's willing to defend Satoko from her abusive uncle as seen in the Minagoroshi chapter. He also seemed to be the only adult figure in the village who ever attempted to give Satoshi some peace of mind.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: He always listens to the main characters' worries about what's going on and helps them if possible. Unfortunately, when he figures out what's going on, it's not always to the benefit of the character telling the story...
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: He's one of the few people who knows about the Hate Plague, and he's the actual reason Satoshi went missing. Keeping these secret ends up propagating fear of the annual "curse", and Meakashi in particular could have easily been avoided if he'd just been upfront with Shion.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: In his past anyway. May have had good intentions but his medical practices were ruthless. See Deadly Doctor above.
Voiced by: Takehito Koyasu (JP - drama CD), Daisuke Ono (JP - anime), Patrick Seitz (EN, Bang Zoom), Aleks Le (EN, Funimation)
A young police investigator at the Metropolitan Police Department in Tokyo. He befriended Rika while investigating a case in Hinamizawa four years ago, all due to a prophecy about his wife which came true; he, however, just brushed it off as coincidence.
The fourth arc, Himatsubushi-hen (Time-wasting), is dedicated to him.
- 11th-Hour Ranger: In Matsuribayashi-hen.
- Big Damn Heroes: Hoo boy. When he finally reappears, he proves instrumental in taking down the Big Bad.
- Chekhov's Gunman: Appears as the mostly hapless protagonist of "Himatsubushi-hen", seemingly only to show off what happened during the Dam Conflict, as well as Rika's mysterious ability to predict the future tragedies. He finally comes back at the end as a badass to help save everyone.
- Fair Cop: He's a morally correct and friendly police investigator.
- Fire-Forged Friends: With Ooishi after the events of Himatsubushi-hen. Risking their lives together to rescue the Minister's kidnapped grandson makes them quite good friends.
- Foil: Young, straightlaced, and straightforward to Ooishi's older, perverted, and more wily persona.
- Future Badass: In the worlds where his wife dies.
- Leitmotif: And a pretty cool one.
- Hidden Badass: Though he'd hung up his coat in university, Akasaka uses his (nearly) unparalleled mahjong skills to assert himself during Ooishi and his friends' attempt to hustle the rookie out of money.
- Ironic Name: Mamoru means "to protect" in Japanese. He fails to protect both his wife and the entire town of Hinamizawa. However, it's subverted in "Matsuribayashi-hen" when he finally manages to do it; or at least, in the latter case, he plays a critical role in the effort.
- Like a Daughter to Me: He views Rika as the living portrayal of his ideal daughter.
- My Greatest Failure: His inability to solve the Hinamizawa murders and the eventual disaster that almost inevitably befalls the village and consequently his failure to prevent Rika's death serves as this for Akasaka in most of the endings.
- Redemption Quest: Himatsubushi-hen ends with Akasaka swearing to search for the truth behind the mysteries of Hinamizawa, mainly Rika's murder, to atone for not listening to Rika's warnings which resulted in both his wife's and Rika's deaths.
- Took a Level in Badass:
- In Himatsubushi, he's just a greenhorn. In Matsuribayashi, he is referred to multiple times as a monster.
- And learned the Falcon Punch during the Level Grinding. He punches a bulletproof windshield, causing it to shatter.
- In the VN, he doesn't only shatter the windshield, he destroys the entire van with his punch!
Voiced by: Shizuka Okohira (JP), Barbara Goodson (EN, Bang Zoom), Pam Dougherty (EN, Funimation)
Mion and Shion's grandmother and head of the Sonozaki household. She appears to be a very harsh old woman and is considered the most powerful person in Hinamizawa. Shion call her "Oni-baba" ("demon granny").
Shion suspects that she was the mastermind in Satoshi's disappearance.
- Covert Pervert: According to the preview for Kai episode 18, she's an active dominatrix.
- Disproportionate Retribution: Motive for the "distinguishment" scene.
- Evil Matriarch: Shion and Akane call her Onibaba (demon granny), what more do you need to know? Hey! She even has the voice of Rita Repulza so why not? In reality, she's not actually evil, just a Jerk with a Heart of Gold.
- Gruesome Grandparent: She treats her granddaughter Shion like garbage because the Sonozakis ostracize younger twins. The worst thing she did to her was forcing her to rip off her own fingernails.
- Hidden Heart of Gold: Oryou may have come off as an unforgivable cruel lady in the early arcs but she's not without kindness when she helps Keiichi and the others rescue Satoko from her abusive uncle. in 'Minagoroshi'. She stubbornly turned down the Club's appeal to end her ostracization on Satoko, but Rena notes afterward that she never actually seemed mad at Keiichi's hostility. Shortly afterward, Akane gives them Oryou's approval, explaining that her position made her feel like she couldn't just relent without a third party like Keiichi putting pressure on her. It's also implied that she really loves Shion despite her harshness on her as it's required for her to put on a tough facade as the head of the Sonozaki family. Matsuribayashi reveals that she makes ohagi for the dam director's grave every year despite him being public enemy #1 during the dam conflict.
- Informed Kindness: She acts as a Grumpy Old Woman whenever she appears and her mistreatment of Shion and the Houjou children make her look cruel. According to Mion and Akane, Oryou just pretends to be a worse person than she really is to keep up appearances as the leader of the Sonozaki. Akane actually tells Shion that Oryou is quite nice to her in private even though Oryou disowned her for marrying a man she did not approve of. Of course, since the audience doesn't get to see that and only has Mion's and Akane's word about Oryou's softer side, Shion's view of her as a heartless "oni old hag" is the main image one gets of her.
- Meaningful Name: "Oryou" contains the character "oni", as do all the names of the Sonozaki heirs. Oryou's daughter Akane (Mion and Shion's mother) used to have an "oni" in her name, but was forced to change the spelling when she was disinherited for marrying an outsider.
- Parental Marriage Veto: She and her daughter got into a Sword Fight when Akane decided to marry an outsider of the village. Because of this, Oryou disowned Akane and forced her to change the spelling of her given name to remove the "oni" kanji.
- Pet the Dog: When she gives her support to Keiichi in Minagoroshi-hen, and later in Matsuribayashi-hen when it is revealed that she was pulling the strings on Keiichi, of all people — she put real estate up for sale for the explicit purpose of having an energetic outsider kid like him move in and clear up the village resentment against the Hojou family.
- Plausible Deniability: She's carefully indirect with her phrasing at formal family and village meetings, and alert family members carry out her "wishes". Unless she personally gets her hands on something, she knows nothing of the details of operation. She teaches Mion to function this way as head of the family.
- Red Herring: Her position as the family head of a yakuza family and her hatred towards outsiders and the Houjou family makes her a prime suspect for the murders and disappearances during the Wataganashi festivals. She in fact actively encourages this for the sake of holding the scary reputation of the Sonozaki family. The truth of the case of that the Sonozakis are innocent and the real culprit is Takano.
- Shipper on Deck: In Kira episode 3, she warns Keiichi not to make Mion cry, and later encourages Mion to take the initiative with Keiichi while assuring her that she's plenty feminine despite her Tomboy Angst.
- Slave to PR: She actually does love her daughter and Shion, plus she forgave the Houjou family long ago, but she has to keep up appearances.
- Sure, Let's Go with That: A policy she has in place. If anything mysterious happens and it's credited to the Sonozakis, she acts like she is responsible without confirming it. Nastily deconstructed as this causes a lot of problems.
- Tsundere: In public, she's always harsh, but in private she cares a lot about her daughter and granddaughters.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Major offender of this trope; the Sonozaki family's policy of making them look tougher than they really are bites everyone in the ass by causing them to become incredibly suspicious and cause distrust in the Only Sane Man of the club. Oryou's actions are the primary cause of the Cotton Drifting/Eye Opening chapters. Her Sure, Let's Go with That attitude is a cause for Ooishi being one himself, which causes her to be indirectly responsible for the Spirited By the Demon and Atonement chapter. Her stubborness towards not cleaning up resentment towards the Hojou siblings is a contributing factor in their problems with the Hate Plague.
- You Got Spunk!: Has this opinion of Keiichi after he threatens to split her head open if she doesn't give her support to rescuing Satoko from Teppei.