The Spirit Wave Legend Character Analysis: Genkai

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“No living being is a one man show. Every decision you make will affect the countless people that care about you.” -Genkai

Genkai was the master of Yusuke Urameshi, as well as a main character in Yu Yu Hakusho series. She’s a 70 year old human psychic that has the power level of B Class human. Normally, Genkai looked like a thoroughly aged woman, wearing martial arts clothes and occasionally a purple cap bearing a manji with the characters for ‘master’, which reflects ancient Buddhist tradition. Genkai was an old-fashioned woman with great strength and determination.

Personality
Genkai put her mind and body through extensive training to allow her to create and control the spirit wave orb, which contributed greatly to her rather cold and hard demeanor. She appears to be a pragmatist first and foremost, seemingly unfazed by any moral shortcomings the candidates had in her tournament she held for a successor. She was the type of person who will do almost anything she deems necessary to accomplish her goals. This mentality is what compelled her to push herself and others beyond their apparent limits. This isn’t to say that she is without decency or remorse, however. Genkai’s love for Yusuke was also frequently proven, she would often place her own welfare at considerable risk to protect him.

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Relationship With Student
She viewed Yusuke as a slacker at first, often putting him through grueling and life-threatening training regimens, but soon came to love him like the son she never had. Genkai had several harsh training methods. Yusuke had to balance himself up with only his finger on a needle for 12 hours to learn how to focus his energy on a specific point (like Yusuke’s spirit punch), meditate on burning coals, sleep on a bed of nails, as well as be hit point blank by potentially lethal energy attacks to build up his energy blocking techniques. She has consistently been noted to be one of the most powerful characters in the series and Yusuke would not be half as powerful if it were not for her training and Spirit inheritance.
Yusuke – learned Spirit Shotgun, Spirit Wave, and had his Spirit Power greatly improved by Spirit Cuffs
She was the first to explain to Yusuke on the loss of his Spirit Gun and why his energy had been so slow to return, as well as notice that Yusuke’s energy level was too low to visualize the attacks of the Dr Ichigaki team during The Dark Tournament.

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Strengths
She has consistently been noted to be one of the most powerful characters in the series. Spirit Wave: Genkai’s personal fighting style, coveted by humans and demons alike. It works by using one’s body as a center for spirit energy (instead of only one’s finger like in the Spirit Gun), in a sense, making your whole body a weapon. In battle, Genkai possesses a great amount of fighting experience, thus shaping her into a keen minded fighter and master tactician.
Known Techniques/Moves
Kiai Cannon
Spirit Gun
Spirit Shotgun
Spirit Wave
Spirit Wave Orb
Spirit Reflection Blast
Spirit Cuffs

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Weaknesses
While strong as a result of training over the years, Genkai is still human so her weakness come from the things of human nature such as aging over time and emotions. She becomes physically weaker over time even while maintainng her spirit energy at high levels. She also can be beaten due to putting herself in a corner for someone else she cares for, that person is usually Yusuke.

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Character Depth/Development
Genkai was first introduced to the audience as tough no nonsense strong psychic that was only interested in passing along her techniques to a strong student but along the way she became not only a master to Yusuke but also someone that cared for him like a son. Their relationship, while tense during the harsh training, became one that both relied on so much that it affected Yusuke greatly when Genkai was murdered.

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Character Role Fulfilment
The knowledge, advice, and resources a mentor shares depend on the format and goals of a specific mentoring relationship. A mentor may share with a mentee (or protege) information about his or her own path, as well as provide guidance, motivation, emotional support, and role modeling.
For Yusuke the goal was getting strong enough to defeat Toguro and Genkai helped him achieve this goal by giving him her harshest training, her power, her help as a teammate on his team and even her life.
Yusuke, while her most cared for student, wasn’t her only student. Genkai was brought back to life and had been healing in a secret compound at the time. She sent three psychics, who had come to her compound seeking her advice and help reinserting Yu Kaito’s soul (which he had removed by his own power) into his body, to test Yusuke and his friends, with them winning in the long run, with the intent of teaching them that they need to be more careful on their new mission and not to be irrationally overconfident in their abilities as they all (with the exception of Kurama) have demonstrated in the past as well as during Genkai’s elaborate ruse.
She also trained demons met during The Dark Tournament.
Jin – learned Tornado Fist Explosion and gained some control over electricity
Toya- learned Ice Absorption and gained a better range to his Frozen Hell
Chu – demonstrated limited levitation as well as a Headbutt that could shatter mountains
Rinku- learned how to use his toes to control Yo-Yos as well
Shishiwakamaru – learned Chorus of Ten Thousand Skulls
Suzuki – learned Rainbow Cyclone Redux.

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Unique Characteristic Quality

The Spirit Wave is a powerful technique created by Genkai. This technique was created by Genkai for a use primarily in healing. Offensively, the Spirit Wave is able to take down almost any enemy when used most effectively. As Genkai grew older, she held a test of succession, and at its end, it was taught to Yusuke. As an attack, it is capable of being used long range with a wide spread much like the Shot Gun. However, it’s most effective when used over a short distance through a punch or a kick. When the energy reaches the target it quickly creates a devastating pressure on the target, and dissipates as it exerts an extreme amount of force onto the target.

Master Rating: A

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3 responses to “The Spirit Wave Legend Character Analysis: Genkai

  1. Pingback: A Reintroduction to Yu Yu Hakusho | Sleeping Geeks·

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