Kihara Gensei (木原幻生 Kihara Gensei?) is an enigmatic character appearing in Toaru Kagaku no Railgun. A member of the Kihara family, he is a man obsessed with Level 6, and has made several attempts to achieve it.
As the creator of the Ability Body Crystal, his actions would influence the beginning of Toaru Kagaku no Railgun, and several characters in the later part of Toaru Majutsu no Index. For those reasons, he can be arguably considered the main antagonist of the Railgun side story.
His name (幻生) literally means "Illusory Life", and maybe a reference not appearing at all in the series in the current year of the timeline. Using other characters (原生), it can be translated as "Primitive" or "Primeval", referring to his age. Furthermore, his name is used interchangeably with "Tensei", meaning Reincarnation.
He is a man of advanced age. His height is quite average, though he seems to have a hunch. His most notable feature is that he often has his eyes closed, only rarely opening it when he is excited, as well as a birthmark that can be found on his right temple. Gensei is currently the oldest Kihara introduced in the series.
Typical of a Kihara, Gensei is a sinister figure despite his usually smiling expression; he has no qualms in killing people for the success of his research (even himself, as it was revealed during his second attempt to Level up a Level 5 Esper), which brings him at odds with Heaven Canceller, whose belief in the Hippocratic Oath clashes with Gensei eagerness to push the boundaries of science. He also admits that his eagerness has resulted in not seeing anything around him when something unexpected happens, and admits that this has caused accidents that have nearly killed him several times.
Perhaps because of this, and the fact that he fits the description the most that he is referred to as a "mad scientist".
An old man with an analytical mind, in the long time he has spent in the Dark Side of Academy City, he has become sensitive to people plotting something. He can see through people's deceptions through their mannerisms, for example Misaki still having "a glint of hope" in her eye, as such he was wary of her leading him to a trap.
According to Therestina, Gensei is a famous and influential scientist who famous in different circles. His expertise is in the line of neuroscience, where he conducts experiments to improve the potential of the human mind, though in more sinister ways than most scientists.
His biggest research project yet is SYSTEM, which aims to explore the possibilities of humans to "reach the will of heaven" by creating a Level 6 Esper. His methods are through "overloading espers" by destabilizing the brain and breaking its tolerable limits by the use of manipulation of the brain and subjecting it to extreme treatments involving overuse of chemicals. This experiment was first done on his granddaughter, Therestina Kihara, as the First Sample, and have overloaded her abilities to extract the chemicals from her.
He later presents his findings to his peers, and piques the attention of the Heaven Canceller, who tells him of the human costs of his experiments and the victims it causes, though Gensei states that there are no victims in his experiments.
His experiments have apparently attracted some people, and formed a council to fund his work, with him as the supervisor. In the Advanced Education Department, he supervises the experiment, and has Kiyama Harumi, teach the Child Errors that will be used in the experiment. Predictably, the experiments goes awry for the children, though Gensei shows calmness throughout the ordeal even the children are in danger, and thanks Harumi for all her hard work. He later puts a gag order on the facility, and tells the researcher present that the experiment was completed without incident. In the manga, it is shown that Gensei is later confronted by Harumi for this, though Gensei just tells her that nobody cares as they are getting rid of the problematic Child Errors.
It is unknown what he has done afterwards. At some point in time he had a research facility built in School District 17, although, what it was use for was unknown. Although presumably, he used to carry on his research on the Crystallized Esper Essence.
He apparently later changes tactics in creating a Level 6, apparently abandoning the Ability Body Crystal and focusing his attention on leveling a Level 5. He is the primary proponent of the Level 6 Shift for Accelerator. And later, after its failure, had his attention focus on the Misaka Network and Misaka Mikoto; it is noted that after the fiasco with the Level 6 Shift, for Accelerator, Gensei learned about the existence of Imagine Breaker, as well as its potential for negating the powers of people, and had calculated the possibility of it interfering with his second Level 6 Shift project should Kamijou Touma intervene again, which did occurred later, due to his close relationship with Misaka Mikoto. Gensei also somehow learns of the Exterior Project, and desires to use it as part of his plans.
Ever eager for experiments, Gensei is often hoisted by own petard when it comes to them, necessitating for him to use prostheses. He even claims that his body is fare trade for prosthetic technology. An example of this is his right hand.
Toaru Kagaku no Railgun
Level Upper Arc
- Main article: Level Upper Arc
He is apparently the one who gave instructions to Harumi for brainwave tuning, allowing her to create Level Upper, effectively being the man behind the creation of the Level Upper. Although it is unknown if it is through his deliberate instruction or covert manipulation as part of his plans.
When Misaka Mikoto gets a glimpse of Kiyama Harumi's memory after electrocuting her, he is first seen asking Harumi to become a teacher to the Child Errors as it was a request by the head council. He is later seen smiling with glee after the experiment, overloading the Child Error espers present and putting them in a coma, apparently getting the result he wanted.
- Main article: Poltergeist Arc
Kihara Gensei is referenced several times during the arc, after a string of Poltergeist earthquakes erupts all around Academy City, due to him being linked to Kiyama Harumi, who in their experiments have overloaded espers (overloaded espers causes the Poltergeist phenomenon). Further revelations shows Heaven Canceller's dealings with Gensei, which gives him a reason to intervene in the recent incidents.
In the final episode, it is revealed that he used his granddaughter, Therestina Kihara Lifeline, as the first sample of his Crystallized Esper Essence, telling her she will be Academy City's dream, in becoming Level 6.
Daihasei Festival Arc
- Main article: Daihasei Festival Arc (Railgun)
Gensei becomes prominent during the arc, and is its main antagonist. Prior to the events of the arc, he releases Kouzaku Mitori to work for him, and by proxy allow him to use MEMBER as she is a mediator for the group. Moreover, not exactly knowing where Exterior, it is implied that he used or even instigated the Urban Legend website Auribus oculi fideliores sunt to look for its location.
Wanting to lure away Misaki from Exterior, he has a stand-in to look like him for the International Esper Powers Research Conference in School District 9, and most likely leaked information of "his" whereabouts there. Knowing that Misaki will eventually figure out his ruse, he sends a message to Misaki by talking to the stand-in in the event that Misaki reads the stand-in's memories. Here, he mocks Misaki for leaving Exterior.
As Misaki and Mikoto take down the conference, Mitori reports to Gensei himself, and shows the great foresight he had in Misaki being the one who raided their "villas" in order to find him in the conference. Gensei then tells her to prepare as he goes towards School District 2 where the Exterior is located.
Upon arriving there, he swiftly forces Keitz Nokleben, the security supervisor of the Level 6 Shift, and now under the employ of Misaki up on the roof in desperation with Misaka 10032 with his group of skilled special forces. He quickly takes over Exterior, going through its complex registration protocols for usage by aligning its brainwaves with his. He quickly stuns Keitz with the power of Mental Out, and later taunts Misaki on the phone regarding one he easily took over, asking her if she heard that rumors, the Level Upper. He is ecstatic over Mikoto's arrival in the building, saying that it saved him the effort. With Misaki collapsing after Gensei took over her giant brain (Exterior), Gensei looks upon the still ailing Misaka 10032, and destroys the security that Misaki set-up for the Misaka Network using her powers by using her powers via Exterior. With that it shatters the security against electrical viruses, and all of the Sisters in the world are quickly infected by it.
Black electricity covers the sky as the power caused by the virus infecting the Misaka Network manifests itself through each Sister. Gensei is ecstatic of the results, but notes on how the energy is nothing more than show if it doesn't have any use. Mikoto finally arrives at the rooftop, and seeing a downed Misaka 10032, demands to know what Gensei done to her. However, Gensei can only smile at her arrival, referring to her as Aleister's favorite. Suddenly, the black lightning gathering outside gathers and jumps into Mikoto. Lightning flashes on the roof as Misaka Mikoto form changes. Kihara Gensei smiles and says that the experiments will now begin, asking if Mikoto can become a Level 6.
Upon seeing Misaka's new form he orders her to attack the Windowless Building to test her power, her attack which is the largest lightning strike ever recorded dose not even scratch the building. He is not dismayed by the result and comments that she is still not a true level 6, only being 2% down the path to becoming one.
Gensei easily bypasses the facilities defenses by the powers he gained by using Level Upper on an unknown number of espers for the purpose of giving himself Multi-Skill. As he makes his way deeper into Exterior he explains to Misaki that Accelerator is the only one who can achieve Level 6 and remain stable, as that his forced attempt in creating a level 6 by sending Misaka's powers out of control. At 53% of the theoretical limit her mind would transform into something from a different dimension, at 100% her mind and body would be destroyed having exceeded their limit. In the brief moment of reaching that transcended state she would melt down ether like the compression of a white dwarf or an exploding super nova, the resulting effect what ever it be would completely annihilate Academy City. Despite the fact that he would die in this result he believed that some form of progress would come from it. After pinning her to a wall with ice, he states that by incapacitating her he can bypass the mental blocks she placed on her self to prevent Mental Out being used on her. While doing this he becomes distracted not only by the arrival of Touma, but also the fact that Sogiita has shown up as well. As he is caught up in thinking about the effect the combination of the two will have on the experiment and recording the latest development, Misaki manages to escape.
As he catches up to her again he apologizes for becoming distracted earlier, he is then surprised to find that she is giving up on the game of cat and mouse. As Misaki makes a bluff against Gensei, who sees right through it and stops just before he can step on the trap. However, Misaki had already tricked him into a secondary trap, though using his Multi-Skill ability, specifically the Aero Shooter, allows him to escape the pit that Misaki hidden through the Exterior building's Graviton Panels. After being hit by and downed by Gensei, it is seemingly the end for Misaki. However, she once again uses the Graviton Panels to appear inexplicably at the hole Gensei was going through, trapping his hand. However, Misaki's relief is only but a moment as he shows to her that his hand is merely a prosthetic. Gensei says that it is due to his experiments that lead to this state. Moreover, Misaki cannot fool him, for he knew that she still had hope when she was running away. With that Gensei used his Multi-Skill to choke Misaki, making her pass out. He is then able to retrieve the release code. After retrieving his hand, he later senses Mikoto's transforming, something he claims as her "Opening Stage" and then uses the release code to fully open Exterior. However, unknown to Gensei, Misaki had previously considered how she was unlikely to be able to trap him with the Graviton Panels, whether she actually needed Exterior anymore, the need to heal the Sisters of the virus and that this was likely her last chance to capture Gensei. As such, she had taken a gamble by switching her own concepts of the limiter release code with the self-destruct code. Exterior begins to crumble and as a result of this a backlash is afflicted on to Gensei, crippling him in the process. As Gensei collapses he commends Misaki's plan having taken him in completely. Misaki later reads his mind and discovers that Dolly, the prototype clone for the Sisters, had a little sister, where Dolly's memories and experiences have been transferred into her.
Gensei is a talented researcher, specialized in neuroscience, and power developer. He is well known for his researches about SYSTEM, being creator of the Ability Body Crystal, and the main proponent for the Level 6 Shift Project. His work has made him famous and infamous amongst Academy City researchers, though many look past the lack of ethics in his experiments.
- Multi-Skill (
多才能力Tasai Nōryoku (Maruchi Sukiru)?, lit. "Versatility ability"): While he himself is not an esper, he gained multiple esper abilities thanks to the Level Upper system. While he was in control of the Level Upper system, he used abilities he specifically chose to aid him in gaining access to Exterior and pass its defenses, such as the abilities for creating circular holes through steel walls, enduring electric shock, Aero Shooter, emitting a laser that produce an ice like crystallization, and Clairvoyance. He comments that the number of borrowed abilities he has are nowhere near the number the ones that Kiyama Harumi obtained with the same method.
- Mental Out (
心理掌握Shinri Shōaku (Mentaru Auto)?, lit. "Psychological Control"): Having registered with Exterior, Gensei gained the ability of the Fifth Level 5 and all its applications. After Exterior's destruction, he cannot access it anymore.
- (To Kiyama Harumi from Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Episode 11) "It's a pity we lost them, but they were sacrifices in the name of science."
- (To his scientific community from Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Episode 22) "What is the reason Academy City exists? That's right—to surpass mankind."
- (To the Heaven Canceller from Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Episode 22) "Victims? My experiments have no victims. That's preposterous."
- (To Therestina from Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Episode 24) "You're going to become Academy City's dream... Yes... The foundation of it, that is!"
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Episode 22
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Manga Chapter 065
- ↑ Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Episode 24
- ↑ Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Episode 11
- ↑ Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Manga Chapter 014
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Manga Chapter 055
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Manga Chapter 061
- ↑ Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Manga Chapter 059
- ↑ Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Manga Chapter 058
- ↑ Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Manga Chapter 062
- ↑ 11.0 11.1 Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Manga Chapter 064
- ↑ 12.0 12.1 Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Manga Chapter 066
- ↑ Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Manga Chapter 068
|Kihara Amata||Kihara Gensei||Therestina Kihara Lifeline||Kihara Nayuta||Kihara Kagun|
|Kihara Ransuu||Kihara Byouri||Kihara Enshuu||Kihara Yuiitsu||Kihara Noukan|