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Kotaro Minami/Kamen Rider BLACK
Kotaro Minami/Century King Black Sun/Kamen Rider BLACK
Portrayed by: Tetsuo Kurata (live), Jiro Okamoto (suit actor)
A young 19-year old man born during the solar eclipse who was captured and turned into their cyborg Century King, dubbed "Black Sun", alongside step-brother Nobuhiko Akizuki by the cult Gorgom but escapes the brainwashing process thanks to his step-father sacrificing his own well being for interfering the operation. Using the powerful King Stone grafted into his body, Kohtaro transforms into Kamen Rider BLACK in his quest to save Nobuhiko from Gorgom's clutches.
Voted #4 Kamen Rider in the Showa era, and #18 Kamen Rider overall in NHK's All Kamen Rider Popularity Vote.
To see his tropes applied to his appearance in Kamen Rider BLACK RX, click here.
Tropes that apply to him in general
- All-Loving Hero: Is one of the earlier examples in the franchise. This is best shown where he shows compassion towards the Whale Mutant, who, despite being a Gorgom Mutant, wants to protect the sea.
- Anti Anti Christ: Was created to become the next Creation King. However, he ends up as this thanks to his adoptive father's sacrifice.
- Back from the Dead: After his death at the hands of Shadow Moon, the Whale Mutant manages to retrieve his corpse and revived him with a special elixir that was passed down from the Whale Mutant's clan.
- Cain and Abel: The Abel to Nobuhiko's Cain. This becomes tragically clear when Nobuhiko emerges as Gorgom's champion, the two would inevitably clash to the death until only one remains.
- Came Back Strong: As a result of being revived by the Whale Mutant through a special potion, he manages to destroy Grand Mutant Darom with ease.
- Determinator: Not even dying can stop him.
- Even the Loving Hero Has Hated Ones: Compassionate as he may be, Gorgom and it's leader are the only thing he despised the most for ruining his and Nobuhiko's life in the first place.
- The Hero: The titular character of the series, and the one fighting to save Japan from Gorgom.
- Hope Bringer: Most of the Japanese citizens under Gorgom's rule sees him as their only hope to regain their freedom. This is best shown where after BLACK defeats Grand Mutant Darom, the remaining human members of Gorgom repented from their evil ways and put their faith in him to put an end to Gorgom's tyranny.
- Light Is Good: After the first 15 episodes, he starts wearing light riding jackets and light blue jeans. He's also an extremely compassionate and heroic individual.
- Limited Wardrobe: A riding jacket, fingerless gloves, and blue jeans.
- Messianic Archetype: Dies trying to redeem his corrupted adoptive brother, and resurrects several days later.
- Nice Guy: He's polite and friendly to everyone he meets, and will often try to redeem the villain of the week rather than kill them.
- One-Steve Limit: Averted. He shares his given name with Kamen Rider New Den-O
- Our Hero Is Dead: At the end of episode 47, he was legitimately killed by Shadow Moon in their first duel thanks to the intervention of the Creation King. It didn't last long after he was resurrected 2 episodes later.
- Phlebotinum Rebel: Is one of Gorgom's Chosen Ones who was set up to become one of their Evil Overlords, but escaped brainwashing and turned on them.
- Saved by Canon: Kamen Rider BLACK RX had already been greenlit when he was killed late in the series, making it obvious even at the time that he wasn't going to stay dead.
Tropes exclusive to him as Kamen Rider BLACK
- Animal Motif: BLACK was themed after the Southeastern Lubber Grasshopper, while his Grasshopper Mutant form was a Migratory Locust-based.
- Bare-Fisted Monk: Similar to his predecessors, BLACK only relies on hand-to-hand combat along with the reliance of searching his enemy's weak points.
- Body Horror: Due to being incomplete at the time of his escape from Golgom, the armour around his joints is unfinished and leaves his muscle exposed.
- Dark Is Not Evil: Not just on the name. Black is the designated "Black Sun", soon to be the leader of Gorgom and destroy the world. He's the good guy, through and through.
- Finishing Move: The signature Rider Punch and Rider Kick.
- Mechanical Muscles: The exposed brown muscles in his transformed state called the "Strengthened Muscle - Filbron" which he received from his cyborg surgery grants him 30 times the strength of a normal human.
- Painful Transformation: Due to being incomplete at the time of his escape from Golgom. His joints smoke after transforming, and the way he slowly unfurls his fingers clearly indicates a certain level of discomfort.
- Strong and Skilled: He and Shadow Moon were both created to be equally powerful; however, due to Kotaro never entering the same coma that Shadow Moon was in for most of the series, he obtained a large amount of combat experience, when the two actually do fight, Kotaro actually comes very close to winning, only stopping when the Creation King tricks Kotaro into thinking Shadow Moon's control has been broken, allowing Shadow Moon to strike with a nasty surprise attack.
- Transformation Name Announcement: "Kamen Rider - BLACK!"
Portrayed by: Akemi InoueThe younger sister of Nobuhiko, she often finds herself targeted by Gorgom, who seek to use her to awaken Shadow Moon.
- Put on a Bus: She and Katsumi flee Japan after Kohtaro is killed by Shadow Moon. They don't ever appear again afterwards.
Portrayed by: Ayumi TaguchiNobuhiko's girlfriend and Kyoko's closest friend.
- Put on a Bus: She and Kyoko flee Japan after Kohtaro is killed by Shadow Moon. They don't appear again afterwards.
Battle HopperKamen Rider Black's sentient grasshopper-based motorcycle, created by Gorgom as a vehicle for the Century Kings.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: Twice. First when insects corrupt him and make him go berserk, and again when Shadow Moon overrides Black's control of him.
- Cool Bike: As with every other motorcycle rode by Kamen Riders.
- Crazy Jealous Guy: Doesn't take kindly to Road Sector, despite the latter having no degree of sentience.
- Heroic Sacrifice: After the second Brainwashed and Crazy stint. Thankfully he comes back in RX, having evolved into Acrobatter.
- Non Human Side Kick: Despite being a bike he's the closest thing Kohtaro has to a sidekick and ally in his fight against Gorgom.
Road SectorA prototype motorcycle created by Gorgom meant to be mass-produced for their mutants, it was instead stolen by Kohtaro and becomes his second Rider Machine.
- Big Damn Heroes: In one of Black's movies, Kohtaro is trapped in a Pocket Dimension and swarmed by multiple Mutants, until Road Sector breaks through the dimensional barrier to rescue him.
- Evil Counterpart: Has one in the form of Hellshooter.
- Grow Beyond Their Programming: Despite not be an organic machine like Battle Hopper, Road Sector expressed concern about Kohtaro's safety more than once.
- Law of Chromatic Superiority: After white, Red is the most prominent color on it's paint job.
- Mid-Season Upgrade: Averted. Although its introduction would suggest it's this for Kohtaro, it acts as a supplementary bike to Battle Hopper.
- Non Human Side Kick: Unlike Battle Hopper, Road Sector never really talks at all. It have some level of sentience, though.
- Put on a Bus: Returned to its creator at the end of the series; not counting Let's Go Kamen Riders, it's remained unused by any Riders since.
- Red Is Heroic: Red is its second most prominent color, behind white.
- Signature Move: Attack Shield.
A mysterious cult whose members occupy high-level positions in human society. Gorgom carries out various criminal and terrorist activities in the name of creating a superior race of mutants to subjugate humankind.
- A Nazi by Any Other Name: Support the supremacy of mutants over humankind. They also share a number of the Nazis' Darwinian beliefs, namely the notion that the disabled or impaired ought to be euthanized.
- Ancient Conspiracy: They've been operating in the shadows for at least 50,000 years, making them about as old as human history.
- Asskicking Leads to Leadership: The "Creation King" of Gorgom is decided by giving two selected candidates Kingstones and having them duel each other to the death, with the winner being crowned Gorgom's new ruler.
- Cult: They're a closed-off religious group which lures in wealthy and influential figures through the promise of power.
- Cut Lex Luthor a Check: Gorgom are a pretty big aversion. They're well aware of the appeal of their mutant conversion process, which gives those who undergo it superpowers and a thousand year long lifespan, and use it to entice prominent societal figures to join them with the promise they'll be rewarded with it in exchange for their loyal service.
- Expy: With their cache of animal-themed monsters and Super Supremacist ideology, Gorgom is basically Shocker if they got political connections.
- Fictional Political Party: The EP Party is a Gorgom-sponsored political party by which Gorgom plots to gain control of the Japanese diet.
- In the Hood: All three of Gorgom's High Priests wear white hoods.
- Light Is Not Good: In contrast to Black they all have mostly appearances, with the Gorgom priests wearing white cloaks and Shadow Moon being bright silver.
- Nebulous Evil Organisation: Gorgom is the shadowy organization purveying evil in BLACK.
- Religion of Evil: Gorgom practices a religion centered around mutant supremacy and worship of their almighty Creation King.
- Standard Evil Empire Hierarchy: Not technically an empire but they fit this pretty well.
- The Emperor: Shadow Moon.
- The Right Hand: Handmaiden Mutants Mara and Kara.
- The General: The Three High Priests. They aren't generals, but they plan and direct most of the mutant attacks.
- The Guard: Ryuzaburo Sakata and Koichi Omiya, who use their political and business connections to control various front locations for Gorgom.
- The Oddball: Hideomi Kuromatsu, the top scientist employed by Gorgom.
- Evil Counterpart: Bilgenia, and of course Shadow Moon.
- The Man Behind the Man: The previous Creation King, who still controls the cult behind the scenes.
- Transhuman Treachery: Humans who join Gorgom do so with the desire of becoming a mutant and extending their lifespan.
Creation King (Unmarked Spoilers)
Portrayed by: Takeshi Watabe (voice)
The highest leader of Gorgom who bestowed the Kingstones to his two potential successors.
- Big Bad: The true mastermind behind Gorgom and everything bad in the series. If it wasn't for him, not only would Kohtaro and Nobuhiko have grown up leading normal lives, but Gorgom would not have been created, and Kohtaro's adoptive father/Nobuhiko's father would still be alive.
- Evil Is Visceral: He's a giant floating heart since his body was destroyed a long time ago.
- Expy: Arguably of the Great Leader of Shocker. Unlike with the sequel series, there's nothing to suggest that he's just another incarnationnote , meaning that he's a separate character.
- The GM Is a Cheating Bastard: Kohtaro teams up with Whale Mutant? Teleport Kohtaro away. Kohtaro is winning against Shadow Moon? Tell Kohtaro that Shadow Moon's mind control is breaking.
- No One Sees the Boss: Spends most of the show offscreen. It isn't until the final episodes we see what he really looks like.
- Predecessor Villain: To Shadow Moon, his planned successor.
- Really 700 Years Old: Supposedly had been living for 50,000 years, which is how long each Creation King is supposed to live. In fact, the entire reason the plot kickstarts is that his life is almost over, and he needs a successor.
- Satanic Archetype: Even moreso than his potential successor Shadow Moon. He is a leader of a dark cult who spearheaded his succession rites to two young men against their will, having most of the societal elites made a deal with him through his High Priests, and is willing to cause mass genocide to those who were not part of his cult.
- Suddenly Voiced: For most of the series spending himself hiding within the Gorgom HQ, the Creation King only communicates to his underlings via telepathy until the final episodes where he's finally speaking when the endgame draws near.
- Walking Spoiler: It's really hard to talk about him without talking about spoiling the end of Black.
Nobuhiko Akizuki/Shadow Moon (Unmarked Spoilers)
Nobuhiko Akizuki/Century King Shadow Moon
Portrayed by: Takahito Horiuchi (live), Masaki Terasoma (voiced), Tokio Iwata (suit actor)The step-brother of Kohtaro and older brother of Kyoko, also born during the solar eclipse, who was captured by Gorgom and converted into their Century King. However, unlike Kohtaro, he ended up being brainwashed and put in a hibernation state until the High Priests sacrificed their stones to complete his transformation into Shadow Moon in order to fulfill his mission to become the next Creation King by defeating Kamen Rider BLACK in a battle to the death.
Voted #6 Kamen Rider in the Showa era, and #45 Kamen Rider overall in NHK's All Kamen Rider Popularity Vote.
Tropes that apply to him in general:
- Cain and Abel: Not by his choice, but as his brainwashed self, he's dead set on killing Kotaro to solidify his place as the next Creation King.
- Distressed Dude: For most of the series, Nobuhiko was held captive by the High Priests as he was in his comatose state until his modifications were complete.
- Face–Monster Turn: He was originally a kind and decent man before he was completely corrupted by the cult who transformed him into his current form.
- Friendly Rival: Used to be one towards Kotaro during the time they play soccer in high school.
- Satellite Character: Aside for being a decent man to both his stepbrother, sister, and girlfriend, his only purpose in the story was to become corrupted into evil by the cult.
- Tragic Villain: Was a kind person before being abducted and Brainwashed by Gorgom.
Tropes exclusive to him as Shadow Moon:
- Antichrist: Unlike Kotaro, Shadow Moon is fully in on being a Century King and subjugating the human race thanks to the brainwashing he received from Gorgom.
- Breakout Villain: By far and away the most popular individual Kamen Rider villain. He's made constant reappearances and popped up as the Big Bad of several movies and specials after RX, and is seen as the template which all evil Riders are based on even though his Rider status is debatable at best. And on top of it, his incarnation in the reboot series has a "Kamen Rider" status on it.
- Dark Messiah: Revered by Gorgom as their religious figurehead.
- Dragon-in-Chief: To the the Creation King, who at the end of the day is just a giant heart. Shadow Moon is the one who leads the cult up front and serves as the more formidable threat to Black, carrying the Creation King's will in their quest to kill Kamen Rider BLACK in order to achieve world domination.
- Evil Counterpart: Inverted. BLACK is the Good Counterpart since the Century Kings were meant to be brainwashed into evil in the first place.
- Evil Genius: Nobuhiko was highly intelligent before he got forcibly inducted into Gorgom. As Shadow Moon, he now puts his mind to work formulating evil schemes to further Gorgom's goals.
- Evil Overlord: He's the anointed god-king of a cult bent on world domination.
- Expy: Of Hakaider, being a robotic warrior who's a rival and Evil Counterpart to his brother, and is obsessed with defeating him. However, while Hakaider wields a gun, Shadow Moon wields a sword as his weapon of choice. Shadow Moon, in turn, has gone on to inspire a number of villains both in the Kamen Rider franchise and outside of it, such as Black Beet, Deathferd, and Wolzard. Pretty much every evil Rider in the series borrows something from Shadow Moon as well.
- Fatal Flaw: As Shadow Moon, being full of himself and his cruelty towards Black proves to be his own undoing when Black used the Kingstone Flash to nullify his hold over Battle Hopper, ultimately resulting with him being Rider Kicked after taking a big hit from Battle Hopper's suicide attack.
- Hero Killer: With the help from the Creation King, he managed to kill Black during their first match.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: He was easily winning his penultimate duel with Black but just to be cruel decided to hijack Battle Hopper to kill Black with his own bike. Instead Black reasserts control and Battle Hopper charges at him with a suicide attack, not only wounding Shadow Moon but also leaving him wide open to Black's Rider Kick that further cripples him and forces him to retreat. In their final battle a short while later he's still so beat up, he doesn't even stand a chance against a Satan Saber-wielding Black and is easily defeated in a Single-Stroke Battle.
- Light Is Not Good: His colors contrast BLACK's (being whitish silver with green eyes, compared to BLACK's black armor with red eyes), and if you couldn't tell by the other tropes.
- Lightning Bruiser: Compared to Black's sleeker appearance, Shadow Moon has more armor-looking in appearance, yet his overall stats are equal to Black.
- Secondary Color Nemesis: Shadow Moon's eyes are green, in contrast to the heroic red of Black Sun's.
- Shock and Awe: Comes in green, yellow, and red variants.
- Tin Tyrant: From the moment he's awakened, Shadow Moon stays clad in his silver-armored Century King form. His true form as Nobuhiko only comes out in moments of lucidity.
- Unskilled, but Strong: A case could be made, since in their duel Black's winning for most of it despite them supposedly being equally powerful and Shadow Moon actually being armed. The tide only turns when the Creation King makes it seem like the spell's been broken over him, letting Shadow Moon get in a devastating surprise attack. Makes sense when you consider that Shadow Moon spends most of the show in a coma while Black's been sharpening his fighting skills on monster after monster.
The Three High Priests
High Priest/Grand Mutant Darom
Portrayed by: Shōzō Iizuka
The leader of the High Priests.
- Big Creepy-Crawlies: His Grand Mutant form is based off a trilobite.
- Demoted to Dragon: Serves as The Heavy for most of the series until Shadow Moon revives, at which point he and the other High Priests willingly pledge their servitude to him.
- Diabolical Mastermind: He's the one who fronts most of Gorgom activities, forging political and business connections to bolster Gorgom's standing whilst masterminding various plans to undermine human society.
- Evil Genius: Darom is usually the one who masterminds the cult's schemes.
- The Heavy: Default leader of the High Priests and the one directing Gorgom's activities until Shadow Moon's revival.
- Mister Big: He's actually the shortest of the Three High Priests.
- Psychic Powers: Can manipulate others simply by pointing at them.
High Priest/Grand Mutant Baraom
Portrayed by: Toshimichi Takahashi
A member of the High Priests.
- The Brute: Baraom is the toughest and most physically powerful of the high priests.
- Defiant to the End: After Black defeats him with the help of Whale Mutant, he boasts to Black that he will still have to confront Shadow Moon, then unleashes one final burst of electricity at him before exploding.
- Light Is Not Good: Not as much compared to his fellow high priests. He wears a white cloak like them, but his face is a dark green rather than white. He's still pretty evil though.
- Mega Neko: Baraom's Grand Mutant form is a saber-tooth cat-like creature.
- Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: If he didn't backstab Whale Mutant during his final duel against Black, then Gorgom's downfall wouldn't happen.
High Priestess/Grand Mutant Bishum
Portrayed by: Hitomi Yoshii
A member of the High Priests.
- Dark Chick: Besides being the only female of the High Priests, Bishum tends to rely more on manipulation and underhanded tactics.
- Gold and White Are Divine: As with her fellow High Priests, she wears mostly white.
- Ms. Fanservice: Her Grand Mutant Form wears a very tight spandex.
- Sensual Spandex: Her Grand Mutant appearance.
- The Smurfette Principle: The only female High Priest, and really the only prominent female member of Gorgom.
Sword Saint Bilgenia
Portrayed by: Jun Yoshida
A failed candidate for Creation King, born 30,000 years ago on a Solar Eclipse.
- Asshole Victim: After all of his braggings becoming the next Creation King, Bilgenia got his ultimatum of being a pawn in the Creation King's schemes that leads to the rise of Shadow Moon.
- Big Bad Wannabe: Wants to become the next Creation King, but he never stood a chance against Shadow Moon.
- Black Knight: Although he's red, he fights most of the classical criteria for this, being an armored swordsman gone errant.
- Sealed Evil in a Can: Was this at the start of the series. The Creation King eventually forces his release.
- The Unfavorite: Was chosen as a candidate for Creation King, but as he wasn't liked by said king, he was never given a King Stone.
- Wild Card: Although he's unquestionably evil, he doesn't work with Gorgom's high priests, nor does he attempt an Enemy Mine with Kohtaro.
- The Worf Effect: Manages to last a decent amount of the show, only to get Killed Off for Real by Shadow Moon in the latter's debut.
Handmaiden Mutants Mara and Kara
Portrayed by: Yoshie Sakata (Mara), Mari Kanda (Kara)
The female attendants to Shadow Moon.
- Co-Dragons: They're Shadow Moon's direct minions, technically making them this as this puts them above the High Priests.
- Expy: As a gold and silver duo of female minions, they're clearly following on Keller and Mirror.
- Femme Fatalons: Both have long red fingernails.
- Satellite Character: Their existence entirely revolves around Shadow Moon.
Monsters created by Gorgom to carry out their schemes.
- Animal-Themed Superbeing: Each has the motif of a different plant or animal.
- Master Race: Intended by Gorgom as a superior race to supplant humanity.
- Monster of the Week: Each episode, one is sent out to either defeat Black or carry out an evil scheme.
- Mooks: Unlike other Kamen Rider evil organizations, Gorgom doesn't have a combatmen force, so whenever they need more muscle they'll just mass produce a particular Mutant.
- Time Abyss: The average lifespan of a Gorgom Mutant is 5,500 years.
- Was Once a Man: All of them appear to have once been human.
Professor Hideomi Kuromatsu
Portrayed by: Susumu Kurobe
A Nobel Prize-winning professor who moonlights as a scientist for Gorgom.
- Morally Ambiguous Doctorate: Uses his scientific prowess to perform experiments for Gorgom.
- More Despicable Minion: His plans tend to be much nastier than those the High Priests come up with.
- You Have Failed Me: Executed by the High Priests offscreen for failing to kill Black.
Portrayed by: Koreharu Hisatomi
A Japanese politician who heads the pro-Gorgom EP Party.
- Corrupt Politician: Uses his political connections to further Gorgom's schemes.
- Four Eyes, Zero Soul: Wears glasses and is one of the most cold-hearted characters in the show.
- Karma Houdini: Although Kotaro foils several of his schemes, Sakata disappears from the narrative rather than be defeated and is never seen being brought to justice.
- More Despicable Minion: Like Kuromatsu, his schemes are a lot nastier and closer-to-home than the typical Gorgom fare.
- The Social Darwinist: One part of his agenda is to eliminate "undesirables" Gorgom does not believe are worthy of becoming mutants.
- Villain with Good Publicity: To the public he's an honest and hardworking politician, and the political party he founded is a movement for peace. Those aware of his Gorgom ties have a much more accurate view of his morals.
Portrayed by: Harukazu Kitami
A wealthy businessman who heads a conglomerate called the Omiya Konzern and is secretly a member of Gorgom.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: A company president who uses his business as a front for Gorgom and helps them with their schemes.
- Karma Houdini: Like Sakata, he's never seen being brought to justice.
- Minor Major Character: He only pops up in a few episodes, but he gets name-dropped a lot and his company is a convenient front for Gorgom's schemes.