Please Note: This page is a work in progress.
Akira Character Profiles
Akira is a complex film with a plotline that runs through many different groups of characters, all of whom are intertwined and linked with each other. There is no central character as such, so it makes it hard to follow for a lot of people. So here is my rundown of the characters from the anime and there involvement with the plot.
This section is written from only what can be fathomed from watching the Anime and requires no knowledge from the Manga. What is written here is irrespective of what version of the film you are watching, new dub vs old dub vs Japanese language, they all tell the same story.
I will also keep out information about characters that isn't mentioned in the film or that can't be figured out by watching it, such as the spiritual leader who is actually called Lady Miyako and who is infact a surviving test subject. This information is from the Manga and is not expressed in the Anime in any way so I will leave out such information in this section. Such information will be in included when I add characters from the Manga or infact a new section.
The Capsule Gang
The Capsule gang, are a biker gang who roam the streets of Neo Tokyo, their arch rivals and enemy is the Clown Gang.
They all go to the same school, which seems to be a trade school for troubled youths who can't function or were kicked out of normal school. NOTES; A few of them are orphans and a few of them aren't. Some of them probably live in student accommodation as we see Kaori in them. Some we hear talk about his 'Old Man', so he must live at home.
:: Shotaro Kaneda
Leader of the Capsule gang. Falls for Kai. Best Friends with Tetsuo and just wants to get him back. Joins the rebel group who also want to liberate the new test subject.
:: Tetsuo Shima
Tetsuo is an orphan, abandoned by his parents and put into the same orphanage as Kaneda. The two of them become best friends, and tetsuo looks up to Kaneda as an older brother figure.The government, close behind Takashi saw this new potential in Tetsuo so took him away for experiments and testing.
:: Mitsuru Kuwata
:: Eiichi Watanabe
:: Yûji Takeyama
The Espers are a group of children who have undergone government experiments to awaken dormant powers in them, they was most likely orphans which the government ended up owning. These children were probably gifted to start with, hence the government don't just pick anybody to experiment on. Finding naturally evolved children like these would have prompted the Government to start up the project originally.
Every test subject has a number printed on there hands, this signifies the order in which they entered the government testing. Because of the unstable nature of the test subjects powers, they are given medication in the form of tablets, to help keep their powers from raging out of their own control. The tablets have significant side effects. such as slowing down mental and physical growth, this is why they look like children and occasionally act like children, even though they are probably in their mid forties. They live in the hospital were Tetsuo encounters them, this is so they can be monitored and receive medication. Most of the early test subjects are dead, in fact I think these three minus Akira are the only ones who have survived.
Some test subjects have more potential than others, because the experiments are to accelerate the natural gifts which different people are starting to develop naturally. This could be something barely noticeable to ones self or small abilities such as clairvoyance, but thanks to the scientists aura monitor, they can detect the smallest potential in people, and develop it to devastating effect.
:: Kioko - Number 25
:: Takashi - Number 26
Takashi was taken by one of the rebels, seemingly not completely against his will. The rebels thought taking him was most likely for both, rescuing him and to use him as a source of information about the government projects. The rebel was shot dead, leaving Takashi out on his own, to almost be run over by Tetsuo. Though Tetsuo instead, collided with Takashi's energy field, this accelerated the awakening of some dormant powers within Tetsuo.
In his heart he knows that what the government is doing is wrong, that is why when he is found at the scene of Tetsuo's accident, he hesitates to go back with Masaru and the Colonel.
:: Masaru - Number 27
Akira - Number 28
Akira was the most powerful and most naturally gifted of the test subjects, he has attained a state of pure energy which caused the destruction of Tokyo in 1988. This destruction would have occurred probably at the exact point in which the extraordinary power was developed.
His body has been cryogenically frozen and placed in a secret test laboratory underground, to see if future generations can unlock any secrets in his genetic code, this is the nature of the Akira Project. But he has evolved beyond the need for a body and seems to be still around and somehow connected with Tetsuo. This connection is partly down to the flow of universal energy that Akira has become part off, and that Tetsuo has started to tap into. All life force and in fact everything is connected to this energy but only gifted people can draw abilities from this.
Whilst Akira can be thought of as a normal boy who happens to have the strongest gift, I get the feeling that Akira is more than that. I feel that he has a purpose in the scheme of the universe and that just possibly his role is one of destruction and cleansing.
He is summoned back at the end of the film by the three Espers to take Tetsuo away, by which he ends up destroying Tokyo again, but not intentionally, instead that's just the nature of the kind of energy he is producing.
The Rebels are a group of activists who know the government is up to no good.
At the beginning we see that one of them has taken one of the Espers and is trying to get him back to their head quarters, I believe both for rescuing him and to get information. The rebel doesn't make it back though but before his death he instructs the Esper to go to Roy, one of the other Rebels.
He is often seen getting information from Mr Nezu, his spy in the supreme council. Later in the film we see him go to mr Nezu's office in the daytime for help when everything is breaking down. Here he gets shot by Mr Nezu, and stumbles out into the street and dies.
Mr Nezu - the Rebel Spy in the Supreme Council
A rebel spy on the supreme council, who has allegiance with neither, he looks like a rat and is one. When everything is crumbling and the colonel has told the troops to arrest the council, he only thinks of him self and tries to do a runner with loads of stocks and bonds, Ryu (the Rebel) comes to see him in the daytime for help, but Mr Nezu betrays him and shoots him. He turned into a coward and ultimately ended up betraying both the rebels and the supreme council. He has a week heart and needs to take pills for this, when the stress gets too much for him we see him collapse in the street and die, not that long after shooting Ryu.
Colonel Shikishima - Head of the Neo-Tokyo Army and Member of the Supreme Council
A member of the supreme council representing the Army, he is also in charge of the Akira project and the Experiments, most likely for the development of a super weapon, after seeing what Akira was capable of, they want to harness that power and use it on Japans enemies. He feels that somebody must take control of these gifts so the world doesn't get out of control.
After falling out with the council, they strip him of his rank and duty and send police to arrest him, he instead seizes power and sends the troops to arrest all members of the supreme council.
He is weary at all times of Tetsuo's power becoming just like Akira's, and would do anything in and above his power to stop the destruction of Neo Tokyo.
After finding out that Tetsuo's power is growing out of his control, he tries to get him back to the hospital for medication.
The Supreme Council
:: The Scientist
He is the main scientist overseeing both the Akira Project and the Experiments, he is more interested in breaking ground in science than of thinking about the consequences of his actions. The general has told him to watch closely for any signs that Tetsuo is becoming like Akira so they can terminate the subject and prevent the destruction of Neo-Tokyo. But as we find out Tetsuo is becoming like Akira, only the scientist keeps this to him self, for fear of the Colonel scraping the project, this however has grave consequences for him and neo tokyo when Tetsuo lashes out at the soceity that has abbandoned him.
The Spiritual Leader & Religious Groups
A mystic leader who has seen and foretold the second coming of Akira, just like Kiyoko the girl esper she has the gift of clairvoyance. In the comic she is the oldest remaining test subject and has a main role, but in the anime we only see her briefly.
The Different Authorities
The Clown Gang