Shirai Kuroko (白井 黒子 Shirai Kuroko?) is a Level 4 esper and a student of Tokiwadai Middle School, as well as a member of Judgment. She can usually be found accompanying the third-ranked Level 5 esper Misaka Mikoto — her best friend, partner, and roommate. Though a minor character in Toaru Majutsu no Index, she gets a starring role alongside Mikoto in the Toaru Kagaku no Railgun sidestory.
The name Shirai Kuroko is quite interesting because it contains both the meanings of "white" and "black".
The family name "Shirai“ (kanji: 白井) can be literally interpreted as "white" plus "(water) well"; while the given name "Kuroko" (kanji: 黒子) is more interesting: as a name, it can be interpreted as the stem "Kuro-" (meaning "black") plus the suffix "-ko" - which is commonly seen in Japanese female names (other examples include Saten Ruiko and Kongou Mitsuko); while not used as a name, the term "kuroko" means stagehands in traditional Japanese theater, who dress all in black.
These literal meanings of Kuroko's name have been referenced several times in the franchise:
- In Toaru Kagaku no Railgun Episode 02, when Misaka Mikoto gets angered at Kuroko about the "computer parts", she says, "I'm going to char you as black as your name."
- In one clip in Toaru Majutsu no Index-tan Episode 02, a shadowy figure, who dresses all in black, carries Index-tan into the scene. This figure is an apparent reference to "kuroko" (the stagehands). Also, the two tawny ponytails extruding from the two sides of the top of this "kuroko" reminds us of Shirai Kuroko - another apparent pun on her name.
- Kuroko's character song is titled Desu no! White & Black.
Kuroko is a girl with tawny hair tied into two curly pigtails; the rest of her hair is left to hang as two rows of fringes divided in the middle. Her pigtails are tied in place by a red bow each. Her hair is naturally curly and as such needs to get a straight perm for it.
With 152 cm she isn't very big and with a flat chest her appearance is the usual appearance of an average girl at her age.
As per ruling of both Academy City and Judgment, she wears the uniform of Tokiwadai Middle School and the Judgment armband though the latter only during on duty. On her thighs, she secures a pair of black straps where she stores the metal spikes used to secure criminals.
Kuroko can be described as a "girl living in the future". She is used to the world 30 years from now portrayed by Academy City and is ignorant to the customs that present-day Japan still practices, like the "love umbrella", which students usually use to link their names to the name of their crush, and the conventional technology outside Academy City.
Aside from being a girl with a modernistic outlook, she can also be blunt when giving her opinions, and this has caused her to be at odds with Uiharu once. Another distinguishing characteristic of Kuroko is her feelings of romantic love towards Mikoto. In the ongoing Railgun manga her affections appear to be genuine and that she is truly in love with Mikoto. She even allows herself to get severely hurt in order to do what she can to help Mikoto. She is regarded as Mikoto's best friend.
Although usually laid-back and friendly, Kuroko portrays determination and confidence in her own abilities when she encounters enemies, even to those whom she knows is more powerful than herself. To her credit, she is an honorable girl who keeps her word, is kind to children, and shares with Mikoto and Touma the same ironclad sense of justice that makes neither of them ever back down in the face of adversity. According to a particular rumor concerning her and Mikoto: "There's this horrifying teleporter in Judgment who'll tear apart your body and soul if she catches you...and there's another that rules over even that teleporter's body and soul - the strongest Electromaster," although Kuroko had no knowledge of this rumor until a robber she took down told her about it.
Kuroko can be close-minded at times refusing to believe in urban legends without any concrete evidence and even then it will still take some time for Kuroko to accept it. Examples include the boy with the power to make other powers stop working, despite knowing him personally and it was not until when she saw the effects of the Level Upper that she began to suspect it and even than it was only after seeing it a considerable amount of times. Kuroko doesn't seem to like the idea of Gemstones, believing that such a phenomenon couldn't be possible without the Power Curriculum Program.
In her Japanese conversations, Kuroko has the habit of ending the determinative sentences with the auxiliary word "ですの" (desu-no), instead of "です" (desu) in standard Japanese language. This can be seen as her unique label in Toaru franchise. For example, Kuroko's catchphrase: " ジャッジメントですの！" (pronunciation: Jajjimento desu-no! meaning: I am Judgement! or This is Judgement!). This is also shown in her character song Desu no! White & Black.
A year before she entered the prestigious Tokiwadai Middle School, Kuroko joined Judgment, a special public committee group whose duty is to maintain peace and order in Academy City. The first major case she handled (along with Uiharu Kazari and Konori Mii) was the arrest of a bank robber who can use the esper ability Equal Speed. Despite her young age, she stood up to the much older esper and was beaten up in the process, although a particular bolt of lightning saved her from imminent danger.
In the April of the current year of timeline, Kuroko enrolls into Tokiwadai Middle School. She later falls in love with Misaka Mikoto, calling her "Onee-sama" (big sister), and then forces her way into her dorm, evicting Mikoto's roommate. The both of them later get punished for this act, but Kuroko stays as her roommate regardless.
Toaru Majutsu no IndexEdit
- Main article: Index Arc
- Main article: Sisters Arc
She makes her first appearance to Touma in the 3rd volume where she's shocked to see Mikoto is with him, giving him a threat to not lay a finger on her. Later, when Touma decides to investigate the Level 6 Shift Project she meets him again at the dorm where she manages to hide him away from one of the dorm supervisors.
Kazakiri Hyouka ArcEdit
- Main article: Kazakiri Hyouka Arc
Kuroko is seen hunting down Sherry Cromwell, who had entered the city illegally, and tries to apprehend her but is stopped by her golem. She is saved by Mikoto who also happens to be on the scene. She later appears to help the people stuck in the underground part of the city, teleporting civilians out of the area as Anti-Skill is preparing to fight against Sherry.
Tree Diagram Remnant ArcEdit
- Main article: Tree Diagram Remnant Arc
Kuroko faces off against Musujime Awaki who has a remnant of the Tree Diagram, but is out-classed as Awaki proves to be the better teleporter. Awaki teleports a corkscrew into Kuroko's side, as well as several spikes. Kuroko returns the favor back at Awaki during their second encounter, but due to Kuroko being on the move all night without rest, she finds she cannot teleport anymore and ends up being pinned under a pile of furniture. Despite this, she continues to verbally assault Awaki, whose composure and teleporting abilities begin to break down as her psychological state of mind is rattled by Kuroko's taunts and rebuttals. Kuroko eventually manages to summon enough strength to overcome the the furniture pinning her down and stand up to face her now-panicking opponent. Using a lamp as an improvised weapon, Kuroko charges at Awaki; the latter reacts by pulling out a gun and shooting her in the torso. Awaki, who is by then in the grip of a mental breakdown, decides to crush Kuroko by collapsing the upper floors of the building onto her. Kuroko, who is almost completely incapacitated and barely conscious, only just manages to be saved by Mikoto (who used her railgun to tear open an entry point into the building) and Touma (who grabbed Kuroko and then used his Imagine Breaker to stop the teleport). Kuroko is then taken to the hospital.
At the hospital, Touma visits to see how she is healing up, and accidentally walks in when Kuroko is changing clothes. He is rewarded with a slap from Kuroko. Later Kuroko jokes that Touma likes girls who are less aggressive, but after seeing Mikoto take the suggestion seriously, she gets upset thinking Mikoto really has fallen in love with Touma. Kuroko vows silently to herself to get stronger herself so that Mikoto will rely on her more, and not be a burden after the 'Tree Diagram Remnant' incident.
Daihasei Festival ArcEdit
- Main article: Daihasei Festival Arc (Index)
Kuroko is unable to participate in the Daihasei festival due to her injuries from the Remnants incident, and is in a wheelchair during the course of events, escorted by Uiharu Kazari. She is seen to cheer up for Mikoto who is taking part in a competition between schools. After seeing Mikoto taking care of Touma on a public TV screen, she vows to kill him for taking advantage of Mikoto and stealing her rightful place.
Academy City Invasion ArcEdit
- Main article: Academy City Invasion Arc
Kuroko is next seen doing office jobs with Uiharu and wonders about the strange situation in Academy City, although she is shown to be aware of the news of an intruder due to television announcements.
Document of Constantine ArcEdit
- Main article: Document of Constantine Arc
While Mikoto was searching for Kamijou Touma's home, she spotted Kuroko and Uiharu walking along the street and talking each other.
World War III ArcEdit
- Main article: World War III Arc
In the novels, on October 31st, Kuroko was busy with Judgment work and wasn't present when Mikoto was thinking about World War III and Touma at the dormitory and when she saw Touma on a news report in Russia.
In the anime, Kuroko was present in the dormitory with Mikoto and watched a video of Academy City's declaration after intercepting the missiles fired by Russia. Later, while watching a news report on her laptop about World War III showing Russia, she discovered Touma in the bottom corner of the screen and informed Mikoto about it.
Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no IndexEdit
Ichihanaran Festival ArcEdit
- Main article: Ichihanaran Festival Arc
Although mentioned several times before, Kuroko reappears again in the novels at last and debuts silently in Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index. She appears with Konori Mii across the road where Uiharu Kazari is. As a member of Judgment, it is her duty to aid Anti-Skill during the Ichihanaransai. She witnesses Mii calling out to Aogami Pierce for questioning, deeming him to be a suspicious person. Kuroko asks her on why they couldn't just throw him into a cell, as there are cases and mysterious reports that are needlessly driving down their efficiency, especially about rampaging Rhinoceros beetles. Mii says not to take her frustration on Aogami, to which she then asks for his belongings to check them.
That was the 43rd time he has been questioned by authorities that year.
Magic God Othinus ArcEdit
- Main article: Magic God Othinus Arc
In the second recreation of the world by Othinus, known as the Version_Beta world in-text, where another "Kamijou Touma" exists living Touma's life. In this world eerily similar to Touma's world, Kuroko is only referenced by Mikoto to be busy when she is forced to confront the sender of the junk mail to Tokiwadai's dormitory, a task that is usually handled by Kuroko according to her.
In the final recreation of the world by Othinus created specifically to break Touma's spirit, known as the Version_Omega world in-text, where several characters from the original world have been "saved" or have not experienced great tragedy, Kuroko, Uiharu, and Saten are in the festival where Touma is after his spirit has already been broken, trying to decide how he should have himself killed. Here, they are all aware of the existence of clones. Kuroko complains on how there are too many people in the festival and wonders where Mikoto had ran off to. Uiharu comments on how it would be impossible to find her in the festival with all the people who look like her. Saten then comments on how she just remembered that Meigo Arisa may be coming in secret, referring to her "perfect mode" after becoming one with Shutaura Sequenzia. Uiharu comments on how she saw the doll-like child president wandering around earlier, as such Arisa may be around.
Magic God Invasion ArcEdit
- Main article: Magic God Invasion Arc
Kuroko and Uiharu are in the same subway train as Akikawa Mie during her adventures in trying to get the liquid diamond to her mother during the shadow of the High Priest's rampage in Academy City. They were in a tunnel when the train suddenly stopped due to the damage done by the High Priest in School District 5's. After being told to leave through the emergency exit, Kuroko and Uiharu do their jobs and guide the passengers. Kuroko notices Mie run out of the train but since it was dark she could not do anything about it. She then asks Uiharu if the power is still not back up.
Touma makes use of Misaka Mikoto's connections with Judgment and her influence to prevent disaster from befalling when the High Priest used the dirt under the city for his magic. Kuroko and Uiharu are part of this bold plan, and as such they are near the headquarters where Mie's mother worked, directing people to safety as members of Judgment. Uiharu later asks Uiharu to arrange the routes so that there won't be any bottlenecks at bridges and intersections.
It is later revealed that all the actions of the people in the city where under the manipulations of Kihara Noukan, making calculations and sending out bait like the liquid diamond that Mie took to prevent human casualties during the High Priest's rampage.
- Main article: Element Arc
On December 8th, Kuroko appeared with other Tokiwadai students when Mikoto brought Touma to School Garden, to her shock and dismay. After some manipulation from Misaki, Kuroko teleported Mikoto away to "tend" to her. She later saved Touma from the rest of the Tokiwadai girls, but soon after fainted from heatstroke and lack of sleep. She recovered but had to stay behind while Touma, Mikoto, and other students went to destroy the Crystal Tower, much to her chagrin. She and the defenders were later overcome by an Element led by Kihara Yuiitsu.
Aleister Crowley ArcEdit
- Main article: Aleister Crowley Arc
On December 11th, as Tokiwadai was being rebuilt, Kuroko was apparently going around looking after other students.
- Main article: Coronzon Arc
Prior to going to Bali, Kuroko and the other girls are in Tokyo by a convenience store, waiting for Misaki and Mikoto to decide which country there were to go to after Academy City was shut down.
- Main article: Kamijou Arc
Souyaku Toaru Majutsu no IndexEdit
Christmas Eve ArcEdit
- Main article: Christmas Eve Arc
On the morning of December 24th, shortly after midnight, Shirai Kuroko was participating in the school's litter picking walk while thinking aloud what to do with Mikoto while they were confined to the dormitory at Christmas. These hopes were quickly dashed as Shokuhou used Mental Out on her to create a distraction as part of the two Level 5s' attempt to escape from Tokiwadai's strict Christmas oversight. Later in the morning, she was part of the group of Tokiwadai students and staff who were pursuing the escaped Mikoto.
Toaru Kagaku no RailgunEdit
Level Upper ArcEdit
- Main article: Level Upper Arc
Kuroko is seen doing her duty as a member of Judgment detaining espers whose powers were enhanced by Level Upper. Due to injuries she sustained from fighting Level Upper users, she couldn't partake in rescuing Uiharu from Kiyama Harumi or help Mikoto fight the AIM Burst.
Big Spider ArcEdit
- Main article: Big Spider Arc
- Main article: Poltergeist Arc
Kuroko is first seen in this arc with Mikoto and Saten helping Uiharu's new roommate move in. Later they go to a festival where a Poltergeist happens, and after observing Erii's odd behavior right before the incident and some investigation, she begins to suspect that Erii is the one responsible, which strains her relationship with Uiharu. When the head of MAR, Therestina Kihara Lifeline's true intention for Erii and Kiyama's students was discovered, she slapped Uiharu to snap her out of her emotional breakdown. Later, she and Kongou joined forces to stall the MAR powered suits, then came to Mikoto's aid against Therestina herself. At the lab, they are again confronted by Therestina, only this time she use Capacity Down to disable them, except for Saten as she was a level zero and thus unaffected by Capacity Down, and went ahead to disable it, an act that earned her Kuroko's respect.
- Main article: Sisters Arc
Although showing rarely, she is the one who opens up the question to Mikoto on what would happen if she were to meet a clone of hers, to which Mikoto gives an answer that she will soon regret. Throughout the story arc, she becomes concerned as to what Mikoto is holding and laments on how Mikoto cannot trust her enough to tell. Kuroko is forced to lie to and deceive their dorm manager for Mikoto's sake as she begins her one-man mission to take down the Level 6 Shift Project.
Later, after Mikoto believes she has shut down the Level 6 Shift Project for good, Kuroko calls Uiharu and Saten to determine what they should do with the current situation with Mikoto. Saten concludes that since Mikoto goes out every night and comes home tired, it can only mean that there is a boy involved, much to Kuroko's disbelief. After an alarm goes off in Vending Machine 7116, she immediately concludes it is Mikoto and proceeds to go investigate alone. She later finds Mikoto with Kamijou Touma leading to the now classic scene of their meeting. Regardless of her horror of Mikoto meeting with Touma, she is relieved that she has returned to her old self.
This is however short-lived, as Mikoto later discovers that the Level 6 Shift Project persists. Kuroko sees through Mikoto's change of behavior and suspects that Touma might have something to do with it, but is then asked by Mikoto a hypothetical question on what Kuroko would do if Mikoto were to do something irreversible to Academy City, to which Kuroko says that she will do her duty even if it is her Onee-sama. Kuroko's words relieves Mikoto but it doesn't help Kuroko's worry. Finally, as Mikoto goes off to destroy Tree Diagram to stop the aforementioned project, Kuroko lies alone in Mikoto's bed worrying about her. She recalls on how Mikoto acts normally when referencing "that idiot" (Touma), and wishes for him to come and do something. Her wish is seemingly granted, leading to their second meeting in the Sisters Arc.
As the Level 6 Shift Project is ended by Touma and the Sisters, Kuroko tracks down Mikoto on a bridge, whom has just met Touma but is unable to give the cookies she baked for him. Kuroko is surprised by Mikoto's reaction after she hears Touma say her name for the first time, saying that it is an expression she has never seen on her before.
Silent Party ArcEdit
- Main article: Silent Party Arc
Kuroko plays a supporting role in the arc. As Mikoto returns back to normal after the events of the Sisters Arc, Kuroko welcomes her back with open arms. When Mikoto once again starts acting secretive, Kuroko is fine with it, believing that Mikoto will be back, and supporting in her endeavors. However, when she opens up to them that she needs their aid in helping Febrie from the dark side of Academy City, Kuroko jumps at the call to help her. She is the one who rescues Mikoto from the office building STUDY stuck her in after she was captured, using Uiharu as the one who tracks the nanodevice embedded inside Mikoto, and Saten as the lookout. She easily defeats the security robots stationed there.
Kuroko gets involved when the group decides to take on STUDY and the Silent Party without any help at all from Anti-Skill for the sake of Febrie and Janie, Febrie's sister. She stands as a sole guardian of one of the Academy City Research Exhibition Assembly venue entrances, and faces off against several of the 20,000 plus STUDY Powered Suits controlled by Diffusion Ghost. After being joined by other Judgment members rallied by Yanagisako Aomi, she is shocked after all of them copy her famous catchphrase. She then does battle against the Powered Suits, and uses the javelins from Tokiwadai, easily defeating a Powered Suit with a single hit. She also uses her ability to rescue Judgment members who are in trouble.
Kuroko is part of the little conference held after Mikoto defeats Aritomi Haruki, STUDY's leader, who has launched the AIM bomb. Here, she is the one who is to go with Mikoto and teleport her back after she has used the Ekaterina II S to destroy the AIM bomb. As they strap themselves in the mecha while waiting for launch, Mikoto apologizes to Kuroko for involving her, to which she replies that she doesn't mind for she is finally fighting side by side with Mikoto. With that, they are launched into space by Kongou's Aero Hand. Kuroko becomes visibly sick upon arriving in the upper atmosphere, but manages to teleport away as Mikoto begins to do her part. Kuroko teleports an exhausted Mikoto back to earth after she destroyed the AIM bomb. She is later seen asleep near Mikoto along with Uiharu, Saten, Kongou, Kinuho, and Maaya in the grounds of the Academic Assembly venue, most likely tired, as the Assembly begins in earnest.
As Janie and Febrie are in a Kongou Airlines runway, preparing to leave to the outside for body readjustments, Kuroko gives her the four leaf clover she found those many days ago for good luck. And thus, the fellowship, though bound by friendship and love, part ways.
Daihasei Festival ArcEdit
- Main article: Daihasei Festival Arc (Railgun)
They are later contacted by Saten Ruiko after getting information from Xochitl regarding the situation Mikoto is in. Kuroko then teleports to School District 2 as the Level 6 Shift attempt on Misaka Mikoto takes place.
Kuroko arrives at the rooftop of the building which holds Exterior, just in time to save help Misaki from being abducted by Mitori and her Liquid Shadow puppet. As Kuroko declares her intention to arrest and question everyone present, especially Mitori for falsifying of the Bank's data, Mitori attacks with her puppet. Kuroko evades her attack and on Misaki's request, teleports Keitz and Misaka 10032. Mitori attempts to attack the two but Kuroko teleports herself and Misaki away into the building, who knows that the puppet is at the maximum control range she has for maintaining control over both the puppets and Mikoto. Inside the facility, Misaki uses her powers on Kuroko to quickly brief Kuroko on what was going on, that Mitori is not a mere bodyguard but a guide for Mikoto's psyche, the likely place where she is hiding through the range of her control of her puppets, as well as the fact that they can stop Mikoto if she stops Mitori.
As the battles for Misaka Mikoto goes on in other places, Kuroko meanwhile teleports from building to building trying to find Mitori. She recalls Misaki's informing her, in that Mental Out isn't very effective on Mikoto, and as such the Liquid Shadow puppet cannot give Mikoto orders. This leads her to conclude that Mitori can only guide Mikoto's psyche if she is nearby. However, with such a high concentration of research facilities near where Mikoto is, Kuroko contacts Uiharu and asks her to check every camera within 800 meters of School District 2's Judgment building. She tells Uiharu to see if she can find Mitori on one of the cameras as well as a list points the cameras do not cover. Uiharu asks Kuroko if she needs backup, to which Kuroko says they do not have time.
As Kuroko teleports into one of the buildings, Mitori has her puppet slice through a door to attack her. Kuroko then proceeds to engage the puppet in combat. As she battles, she finds out where Mitori puts the camera on her Liquid Shadow puppet so she can see, which is on her neck. She attacks it with her darts, disabling Mitori's secondary senses, and forcing her to use echolocation to grasp the situation, Mitori's primary sense for her puppet. She then uses a small device to deafen her ability to echolocate. Kuroko then teleports away as the puppet is preoccupied, trying to search for Mitori. However, the facility is so vast, she requires the aid of a clue. Back in Judgment 177 Branch Office, Saten manages to find Mitori in one of the cameras. Uiharu contacts Kuroko, telling her of Mitori's moving into an alleyway three minutes ago, though she can't tell what building she's in as she hasn't been seen in the other cameras. Kuroko then rushes toward the likely location of Mitori.Kuroko asks if they're sure Mitori hasn't been seen in any other camera, to which Saten confirms. Kuroko notes that Mitori would show up in the cameras if she moved into another building. Seeing this, Kuroko manages to pinpoint the building where Mitori is likely hiding in. She orders Uiharu and Saten to turn all nearby movable cameras toward the building as she teleports in.
Back with the puppet, Mitori is able to pierce the device, but then realizes that the security cameras likely gave her location away. She then has her puppet slice and enter a sewer pipe to head to where Kuroko is going. Uiharu notices this as well, and reports it to Kuroko, confirming to her that the place where Kuroko is in is where Mitori is hiding. Mitori, turns her attention to Kuroko, and uses the cameras of the Homing Cameras that is used for Daihaseisai events to target her. Mitori observers the battle directly during the puppet's confrontation with Kuroko in the building. After Kuroko uses the anti-listening device on her puppet again, Mitori uses the puppet to attack her, though could only spread her attack as she could not tell how high up Kuroko is. Despite being hit on the side and on the arm, Kuroko teleports away and applies a small a balm on her injuries. While doing so, she believes that Mitori is in the building based on the puppet's actions and that she is in the upper floors. After treating her wounds, Kuroko pursues Mitori from below, though notes that she may be overlooking something.
Meanwhile, back in Judgment 177 Branch Office, Saten and Uiharu becomes worried of Kuroko's injuries. Uiharu, as she watches the cameras, later catches the Daihaseisai Homing Cameras surrounding the building where Kuroko is in despite being no events. Uiharu researches that Anti-Skill apparently used them to see if anyone has yet to be evacuated but notes on how the powerful electromagnetic waves there are too powerful for the cameras to approach. Saten then gets the idea in having them use the cameras to aid Kuroko, leading Uiharu to eureka moment. She asks Saten how long the cameras were there, to which she says that they have been there since Kuroko entered the building. Uiharu then reports this to Kuroko, giving to her the possibility that Mitori is not inside the building but somewhere else.
With this new knowledge, Kuroko continues her pursuit of Mitori inside the building. Kuroko finds the last blindspot of the building, only to find that she isn't there. Kuroko goes over thoughts once more, and discovers that Mitori may be hiding in the sewers and that she was led into a trap by Mitori. Mitori's puppet later catches up to Kuroko a ventilation duck. As Kuroko uses another anti-listening device to seal her echolocation, Mitori turns one of the Homing Cameras she has hacked toward the blind spot. Considering the lag when Kuroko teleports and the locations where she is likely to jump to, Mitori has her puppet fire a knife hidden inside it towards Kuroko. However, unbeknownst to her, Uiharu has hacked that particular camera to display dummy footage, allowing Kuroko to escape. With this, Mitori then sees Kuroko teleport behind her puppet, the only safespot for her to teleport to, as she predicted. She then sees Kuroko hit by it through the camera, and later has her Homing Camera roll to see Kuroko's body on the floor below. In the sewers, she laughs madly. Mitori apologizes, saying she wouldn't have killed her if she didn't interfere, though she added that she'd still meet the same fate when the city gets destroyed.
Suddenly, Mitori then hears something behind her, and turns to see Kuroko, who has now discovered Mitori hiding in the sewers. Mitori is shocked that her camera, out of the thousands around, had been hacked with dummy footage, to which Kuroko replies that she had the ultimate partner for that. Kuroko then declares that she has nowhere left to run. Cornered and with no time to call her Liquid Shadow, Mitori reaches for her knives, thinking about how she didn't just come down there to hide but also in case she was tracked down, as the passage limited teleportation. She then plans to shoot Kuroko with her ballistic knife when she teleports to avoid her first knife, taking advantage of her lag, taking both of them down if she attacks via teleportation instead. As Kuroko moves forward, Mitori throws the first knife, but to her surprise instead of teleporting Kuroko intercepts it with her hand. Not reacting fast enough, Mitori is then punched then kicked down by Kuroko. Screaming, she lunges at Kuroko with the second knife but Kuroko teleports and kicks her in the back of the head. As she falls in battle, Mitori could only think of Dolly before losing consciousness. Kuroko later handcuffs Mitori intending for her to be taken into custody. Thus, with the help of many people, the destruction of Academy City through the shifting of Misaka Mikoto is averted.
Misaki later uses her power to restore the memories of Kuroko and the others' memories of her, though modified the events somewhat for them, making them believe that they were out trying to catch terrorists targeting the festival to avoid contradictions. Apparently all to hide the existence of both Exterior and the Sisters from public knowledge, as well as passing along the information on the virus to Heaven Canceller to treat the sisters. Mikoto's not participating in the festival events on the second day was changed as well to that of her eating too much and having her stay in the bathroom all day, much to her chagrin.
Now with the waning days of Daihaseisai coming, one night the girls come upon the bonfire where the folk dance is happening, where they note on how they cannot participate. Mikoto goes away to buy them all drinks. In the meanwhile, Kamijou Touma later meets up with Saten, and thanks her for the protective charm she lent. Touma offers her to buy her some food to make it up to her, though she says that it is all right. Mikoto later comes around with the drinks, and finds Touma talking with Saten. Touma says that he borrowed a protective charm from her, confusing Mikoto though later figures out it was for the borrowing race. Mikoto's stutters and awkward way of presenting herself to Touma does not go unnoticed before the eyes of Saten and Uiharu.
Capitalizing this new found knowledge, Saten approaches Touma and asks him to dance with her around the bonfire as a way to thank her for lending him her protective charm. Touma is fine with the idea, though asks if she is sure with it, to which confirms. Saten then tells Touma to go on ahead, leaving the girls alone. Mikoto is utterly shocked by what has transpired, but with a knowing look between Saten and Uiharu, they make their move. Saten fakes an ailment finally catching up to her, prompting Mikoto to ask her if she is okay. However, Kuroko suddenly figures out their ruse and tries to tell Mikoto, but Uiharu comes up behind her and covers her mouth. With this ruse finally set up, Saten says that she can't move but tells Mikoto that she can dance with Touma in her place. Mikoto becomes embarrassed by this, and makes up a bunch of excuses. Fed up with this, Saten forces Mikoto to say that she wants to dance, to which she does.
The girls later see Mikoto dancing with Touma which is unceremoniously interrupted by Kuroko, teleport dropkicking Touma away, much to Uiharu and Saten's disappointment.
Dream Ranker ArcEdit
- Main article: Dream Ranker Arc
When Mikoto is about to go to sleep to use her first Indian Poker card, Kuroko hides in her blanket and Mikoto has to kick her out. She watches Mikoto as she sleeps, unaware that she is experiencing a bad dream from the card. She monologues dramatically and eventually offers Mikoto her body and heart, only for Mikoto to wake up and shout that she doesn't want that (referring to the dream, not to Kuroko). Kuroko is stunned by this.
The next morning, Kuroko is still depressed over seemingly being rejected. She goes on a patrol with Uiharu, and the latter has to snap her out of her dazed state. They discuss a treasure hunting app that has recently been popular. Uiharu tells her that the app can show images of incidents that have previously happened (which Kuroko considers to be poor taste) and supposedly even incidents that will occur in the future.
Kuroko decides that they must investigate this. They head to one place where an incident is predicted to occur. After some false alarms, Kuroko sees a vehicle accident and teleports to save a bystander from being hit by a car. She tells Uiharu to direct traffic until Anti-Skill arrives, then tracks down the app's creator, Miyama Shaei, who was watching from the roof of a building.
Kuroko brings Shaei to the Judgment office where he explains his power to her and Uiharu: he uses his power in conjunction with a camera and a smartphone application to predict a future event. He also explains that he was never able to prevent the incidents from occurring even with this foreknowledge, and theorizes that Kuroko's ability to move in 11 dimensions allows her to change the future. To prove his ability, he makes a prediction in front of them, which allows Kuroko to find and save a drowning girl. Kuroko and Shaei work together to resolve several more incidents, though Shaei fails to predict the group coma incident.
Shaei eventually predicts that two incidents will occur in the same park the next evening, and fire will be involved. Kuroko enlists the help of more Judgment members to set up checkpoints and search the park. Uiharu gives Kuroko a device that lets her see a real-time satellite image of the park. Kuroko notices the cherry trees blooming out of season, but is then called away by Shaei. He hands her two new predictions set in the park and then collapses. Kuroko takes him to hospital and learns that he is harming himself through power overuse.
Kuroko and the rest of Judgment are at the park just before the predicted time of the fire. She sees the fire and begins teleporting people out, but the fire spreads with unnatural speed. She realizes that the cherry trees were tampered with to make them more flammable and Uiharu uses this information to predict the fire's spread. Kuroko finishes evacuating the people. However, Shaei staggers over and begs her to save a stray dog. Kuroko agrees and successfully saves the dog, handing him to Shaei.
Afterwards, Kuroko hears from Uiharu that the culprits behind the cherry tree tampering were trying to make make the trees bloom year-round, and they had learned how to produce the chemical used from Indian Poker. The two of them meet with Shaei, but he now calls Kuroko a pervert and reveals that Uiharu had told him to stay away from her. Kuroko punishes Uiharu for this. She then talks to Shaei, telling him to visit Judgment again if he ever learns to use his power safely.
When Mikoto stays up late after her failed attempt at getting the rumored Bust Upper card, Kuroko tells her that they need to get to sleep soon.
Kuroko takes part in a Judgment meeting where they discuss Indian Poker. She learns that the cards are being used to leak classified information on organisations such as the School Garden.
- Main article: Jailbreaker Arc
Kuroko and her friends watch an announcement about a jailbreak trial: an event in which espers compete to try and break out a pretend prisoner from a private juvenile hall, to test its security system. Kuroko only plans on competing if Mikoto does, and she disapproves of Mikoto taking part in what she sees as a lowly exhibition. However, Mikoto is goaded by the boasts of the juvenile hall's director, so the four of them end up competing. As they line up for the event, Kuroko stares disapprovingly at Mikoto.
The trial begins, and Kuroko watches the other competitors try and fail to breach the juvenile hall's outer wall. Kuroko teleports the others over a pitfall, but further use of her power is difficult due to the AIM Jammers. When Kongou, who is also competing, tries to use her power to shoot logs at the wall, the Jammers cause her to lose control. One log plummets towards Kuroko and she chooses not to dodge to get Mikoto to save her (expecting to be embraced by her in the process). This fails as Mikoto instead kicks Kuroko out of the way and embraces Uiharu. Kuroko is annoyed and jealous at Uiharu for this.
Finally, they open a hole in the wall by working with other competitors and enter the juvenile hall. Uiharu is caught in the crowd and tells them to go on ahead. Mikoto receives a one-shot airgun from another competitor and, at Saten's suggestion, hands it to Kuroko as she has training with firearms. However, Kuroko uses up the one shot on one of the juvenile hall's robots that catches them by surprise, leaving the group with no weapons.
While walking through the grounds of the juvenile hall, Kuroko complains about Uiharu's lack of stamina. The other two tease her by saying that Uiharu should quit Judgment, tricking Kuroko into praising Uiharu in response. Saten is attacked by a security robot and neither Kuroko nor Mikoto can get it off her. They are secretly helped by Yakumaru, a member of Scavenger who was ordered to assist Mikoto and her group, who destroys the robot. The trio continue, with Yakumaru taking out other robots several times without them noticing. They finally arrive at the prison building only to discover that it's the boys' building - the target is in the girls' building.
Kuroko and the others finally arrive at the girls' building, and she notes that other competitors are already inside. They run into the ninja Oumi Shuri, who tricks them into escorting her by pretending to be a helpless little girl. However, Oumi accidentally drops one of her smoke bombs in front of them, and Kuroko confiscates it as she doesn't want a child to carry something dangerous. They encounter another group of competitors about to use their power and try to intervene, but Oumi persuades them to stay away (so that she can see the effects of an AIM Jammer on an esper). The resulting out-of-control power sends rubber bullets flying everywhere, so Mikoto and Kuroko block the bullets with makeshift shields while Saten covers Oumi. Despite their efforts, Oumi is hit and decides to flee. Kuroko tells the others not to worry about her as they have problems of their own. They are surrounded by robots, but the War Armadillo robots attack the others, revealing that Mikoto had reprogrammed them in advance to fight on her side.
With the robots, the group easily advances through the prison and eventually runs into Kongou Mitsuko and her group. Kongou offers to give them special suits that hide them from the sensors, and Kuroko is excited at the prospect of seeing Mikoto in the skintight suit, but Mikoto declines because of how the suits emphasize one's figure. They finally reach the room where the target is supposed to be, but find it unlocked and empty. It turns out that Uiharu had used her hacking skills to break out the fake prisoner before any of the others.
After the trial is over, they reunite with Uiharu. Uiharu says that she'll donate the prize money to Asunaro Park and jokes that she could always hack a bank if she was interested in money, causing Kuroko to take out her handcuffs with a serious expression. However, they are unaware that the person Uiharu broke out was an actual prisoner in disguise, and that said prisoner has plans for the skilled hacker.
When Uiharu later skips out on her patrol duty, Kuroko angrily confronts her in a restaurant. Uiharu makes the excuse that she's obtaining energy to maximize her performance, but Kuroko stuffs food in her mouth and drags her off to work.
Later that night, Kuroko gets a call from Saten and learns that Uiharu can't be found. She and Mikoto head over to Uiharu's apartment where they meet Saten and learn that Uiharu isn't there either. Kuroko asks the other residents in the apartment but none of them have heard a commotion. Mikoto finds from the camera footage that a recreational vehicle (RV) left the dorm. The three of them head after the vehicle.
Kuroko catches up to the RV and lands on the roof. She debates what to do, since they aren't sure the kidnappers are in the RV yet. This is resolved when Tsurigane emerges from the RV and attacks Kuroko. Kuroko teleports away. Mikoto arrives, brings the RV to a stop and gets into a fight with Kimi. However, Kimi's dragon proves too much for her and Kuroko has to teleport Mikoto to safety. Kuroko sees two vehicles drive away and along the road to District 11, suggesting that the kidnappers are planning to leave the city. She feels that something is unusual about the situation. Saten then proposes an idea, which involves the two of them continuing the chase while leaving her behind.
They catch sight of the two vehicles and find that they are splitting up. They decide to split up and each pursue one vehicle, with Kuroko taking the one carrying Kimi. Mikoto tells her to avoid fighting and to focus on rescuing Uiharu.
Kuroko eventually catches up to the car, which has hit a tree and is smoking.
Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume SS2Edit
- Main article: Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume SS2
The Fourth Friday of AprilEdit
Kuroko enters Sakashima Michibata's salon and tells him to put down his handheld game or else she'll give him some trauma. Kuroko is concerned because Michibata seems unconcerned of getting customers for the salon. Even the staff members that have been only employed there for three months are more worried than Michibata. Regardless, Kuroko goes to a partition and sits down on a chair to get her hair down. Michibata who is unintimidated goes to her and removes her hair ribbons to begin his work. Michibata suggests to Kuroko in using new irons he just acquired and asks if she wants a drill or croissant, saying she can be a very domineering. Kuroko doesn't want to, saying that her hair is naturally curly and as such she wants him to give her a straight perm. Michibata asks if it is an afro she wants, to which Kuroko reiterates, by yelling at him, that she wants a straight perm as he puts on the hair dryer helmet on her head.
Afterward as Michibata pulls out a thin pair of scissors, he tells Kuroko that she must have it tough as she is in a prestigious esper school like Tokiwadai and that she needs to get a teacher's permission for the salon she chooses to get her hair cut. He tells that though their school chose him as a designated shop and allowing him to get a lot of easy money, he says that it must be pretty constrained for her having those rules. Kuroko retorts that complaining won't do a thing, saying that it is because people like him can get a basic genetic sample from hair and blood, and as such the school doesn't want someone secretly collecting and mapping someone's DNA. As he continues with Kuroko's hair, he looks above his head the large number of cameras installed by Tokiwadai Middle School. Michibata then says that he has heard a rumor that there is a new subsidy for research on developing teleportation powers as dealing with 11th dimensional coordinates is difficult enough that it is unpopular with the scientists. Kuroko tells him it is not because scientist dislike 11th dimensional calculations, as they most often come up in the quantum theories related to Schrödinger, and says that the higher ups are just worried that there aren't many espers that can teleport. Kuroko says that there are just abilities that show up easily and some that don't. Michibata notes that is one of the mysteries regarding esper powers as he is sure students go through the same Power Curriculum Program but end up with different powers. As he continues to cut Kuroko's hair he wonders why Academy City is even developing powers in the first place, to which she says that he should not deny the very root of Academy City's reason to exist.
Michibata responds that he understands that esper powers are an attractive prospect but says that he thinks that there's some influential person behind it all who dreams of eternal life or world domination. He says to her that he wonders if the text book on esper powers for students like Kuroko even talk about the uproar during the Cold War, referencing the United States and the Soviet Union investing money in it. Kuroko then references the Stargate Project. Kuroko says that they have learned about the project in history class, saying that the scientist had no idea what they were doing and repeatedly kept doing their large-scale experiments despite their inconclusive findings. She concludes that the scientists were just fumbling around and wasting federal funding. Michibata wonders if the project was truly for developing esper powers for military use. He thinks that the project was more for selfish reasons such as being special than for military use. As he continues cutting hair, he then asks if the esper power development between the US and the USSR during the Cold War get their "esper samples". Kuroko says that maybe they were bluffing. Michibata responds that he doubts all of them are fakes, and says that at the very least he doesn't think anyone would wish to create something like an esper without seeing one. Kuroko uses Alchemy as an example, saying that royalty and nobility believed in alchemy because they thought that they had witnessed it with their own eyes, essentially implying that people don't need facts or evidence to believe in something.
Michibata then says that he doesn't believe in superstitious stuff like Alchemy, UFOs, or the New Jersey Devil. Hearing this, Kuroko asks if Michibata is implying that some information on Academy City technology got leaked to the US and the USSR during the Cold War, to which Michibata says that it would be impossible due to the high difference in technology between the outside and Academy City as it would not help them because they did not have the technology to break the advanced encryption. He continues by saying that an "outside" supercomputer in the past wouldn't have been powerful enough to run even the handheld game he is playing, much less crack the encryption and read any information they attained from Academy City. Kuroko then asks what he is implying, to which Michbata asks if she has heard of Gemstones. Kuroko is silent for a moment, and Michibata then asks if he has upset her. Kuroko says that he did, saying that her power was brought up by the stimulation of her brain through the Power Curriculum Program, and says that she would rather have him not bring up the term Gemstones. Michibata simply calls it a simple difference between an artificial diamond and a natural one. He says that if a certain phenomenon has been caused artificially, then as long as the same circumstances as in the experiment are recreated in the natural world due to some factor or another, the same phenomenon will occur with no help from humans—basically saying that if espers due to Academy City's curriculum can exist then so do espers in the outside through natural means that are similar to the curriculum. He then compares them as espers being a stun gun and Gemstones being a bolt of lightning. A bored Kuroko denies their existence, saying that Gemstones are just a hypothesis, stating that it is because she has never seen anything like a Gemstone and even if they did then the sample size would be extremely small, a mere error in the data and wouldn't even show up in the total results.
Hearing this, Michibata just smiles and once again challenges her in this debate by using her stun gun and lightning, asking if she thinks lightning strikes rather frequently, to which she says that they do, though extremely rare for it to strike a specific person.
The Third Friday of SeptemberEdit
After Uiharu Kazari uses a virtually impossible to crack encryption, the Omega Secret, on the Bank, its server controls, and maintenance tools, in order to prevent a high-level Electromaster intruder from accessing data instead of cutting access to the Bank, Shirai Kuroko goes back to Judgment 177 Branch Office. Here, she tells the bewildered Uiharu that she has gone too far and decides to lecture her.
Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index SSEdit
- Main article: Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index SS
Mikoto and Kuroko are in the shopping district that Index also goes to, leading to a bunch of misunderstandings thanks in part due to Touma’s advice to Index, with Index assuming Mikoto wants Touma’s money and Kuroko becoming suspicious with Mikoto for being violent in back alleys. In the end, a truck passes by before the girls creating a draft, leading to Mikoto and Kuroko’s skirts to be blow upwards.
Seeing this, and the fact that Index has seen a handiwork of a magician in play, Index offers the money to them, to “pay-off” trouble, as Touma advised, much to Mikoto’s chagrin. They of course later decline her offer.
Toaru Majutsu no Index Movie: Miracle of EndymionEdit
- Main article: Toaru Majutsu no Index Movie: Miracle of Endymion
Kuroko, still in a wheelchair from her fight with Awaki, first appears in a family restaurant, and makes a scene there, only to be shocked by Mikoto.
She later reappears with the rest of the gang, accompanying Meigo Arisa as she goes to a photoshoot. She rants about Ladylee Tangleroad not being the real CEO of Orbit Portal Company, and comments on her queer existence. She later, much to her shock, meets Ladylee herself, initially thinking of her as a doll, as she greets Arisa. Kuroko is with her camera as the bombing of the mall they were in begins, and teleports Saten and Uiharu quickly away. She later returns to the scene of the accident, asking if anyone is hurt, but then discovers that a miracle has happened, and everyone is unscathed.
She later teleports Mikoto towards one of the bridges that leads to Endymion during the climax of the movie, allowing her to destroy a large mobile weapon that prevented Anti-Skill from entering the Endymion, as they have discovered it has been sealed. Mikoto tells Kuroko to stay put as she is still injured. Kuroko is forced to acquiesce as her injuries act up again. She later teleports to Anti-Skill's command post as Uiharu discovers that Endymion is about to collapse and they need to destroy the explosive bolts to break it away. Kuroko offers to help Mikoto, but her injury prevents her from doing so. Tsuchimikado Motoharu later contacts them to be a volunteer in destroying one of them, though later has Stiyl Magnus do it instead.
Later, when Anti-Skill is too overwhelmed by Endymion's defenses to even get near one of the explosive bolts, Misaka 10032 contacts them, stating that they will aid it. Kuroko becomes confused as she refers to herself as Misaka, though no more comment is made of this.
Toaru Majutsu no Virtual-On (game)Edit
- Main article: Toaru Majutsu no Virtual-On (game)
Non-in universe appearancesEdit
Ookami-san and her Seven CompanionsEdit
Kuroko appears briefly in Ookami-san and her Seven Companions (also produced by JC Staff Animation Studios), smiling mischievously at the audience as a potential bride candidate for the boy millionaire Nezumi Chuutaro. This is, in combination with sharing the same animation studio, a result of Kuroko's voice actor rather blatantly using Kuroko's voice for the part of the series narrator.
Dengeki Bunko Fighting Climax Edit
Kuroko is one of the new characters added to the game in the Ignition update. She fights by using her martial art skills, teleportation and steel darts. One of her Climax Arts consist of her using a large belt of darts (like the one she used in her fight with MAR in the climax of the Poltergeist Arc) on the opponent, finishing the attack with a teleporting drop kick. In the other she teleports herself and the opponent inside a building, just before using glass panels to cut the support pillars and destroy the building like she did in her fight with Trick, only this time she leaves her opponent behind when she teleports away. Her Trump Card consist in teleporting and hitting the enemy with a wheelchair, based on her doing the same during her first encounter with Kouzaku Mitori.
References in other mediaEdit
In Episode 6 of the second season of the anime Haiyore! Nyaruko-san W, Cthugian Kuuko plans to have a baby with the male main character Mahiro. Trying to combine their both names, Kuuko proposes to name the baby "Kuroko". After that, she says "If it's a girl, we'll enroll her in Academy City."
Her ability is Teleport (
Not only is she able to teleport objects inside designated targets, allowing her to "throw" the darts she carries on her thighs with perfect accuracy, but she can also change their resulting orientation, shown when she teleported a standing Uiharu above a standing Mikoto such that their heads would collide. One disadvantage of her power is that she has to concentrate on where she, the object(s), and/or person she holds will be teleported to, while working out the spatial co-ordinates of jumping between 3-dimensional and 11-dimensional space, so any disturbance in her concentration will render her powers useless, as demonstrated in her fight against Sherry Cromwell. According to Kouzaku Mitori there is a one second lag when consecutively using her power in fights leaving her vulnerable in that one second interval before teleporting again.
Aside from her esper ability, Kuroko mainly relies on the skills she learned from training, which emphasizes throws and take-downs that compensate for her small size. Kuroko specifically focuses on drop kicks. Although usually displayed and used as comedy relief, Kuroko even displays a strong constitution, surviving constantly shocks from Mikoto, having her neck dislocated by the Dorm Supervisor, repeatedly pounding her head on solid objects in fits of either rage or terror or stupidity.
Kuroko can use a handgun, as part of her Judgment training. However, she has difficulty with other kinds of guns, and may waste a shot on something harmless if it catches her by surprise.
In addition to her darts, Kuroko carries small ball-shaped handheld devices made to interfere with listening devices for security purposes. She uses these to deafen the echolocation of Mitori's Liquid Shadow puppet.
She has been apparently in love with Misaka Mikoto for a long time, whom she calls "Onee-sama" (meaning big sister - in the English dub Kuroko refers to her as "Sissy"); when she has the chance she keeps a constant lookout for a chance to get physically intimate with Misaka (getting called a pervert and electroshocked in the process), and tends to get jealous if someone else gets her attention. These attempts have toned down in the manga. Despite her overzealous attempts at gaining Mikoto's favor, her affections appear to be genuine; it has been shown on a few occasions that she is genuinely in love with Mikoto, even allowing herself to get severely injured and hurt in order to help Mikoto. She is regarded as Mikoto's best friend.
Kuroko's relationship with Touma is mostly rivalry and jealousy over his encounters with Mikoto even though Touma himself is not aware of this.
Uiharu and Kuroko met when they were having their Judgment training. They are seen working together and hanging out with their friends, and are seen being good friends throughout the series expect for when they got in an argument about rushing into danger without thinking.
Character Art DesignsEdit
There is little change in Kuroko's design. Haimura simply read her description and drew her without any real influence in her design. During her role as the primary heroine in volume 8, Kuroko's design was slightly modified to reflect her importance in the story; It is unclear what changes were exactly implemented.
By volume 12, Kuroko becomes affected by deformed art style that Haimura has for the characters. Kuroko was designed with white ribbons for her winter uniform, but this is not brought up in the anime adaptation. According to Haimura, Kuroko was the easiest character to transfer in manga format, for her detailed design for the Toaru Kagaku no Railgun manga.
- ↑ Shirai Kuroko and Uiharu Kazari working in the same branch was an invention of the Toaru Kagaku no Railgun anime and was never true outside of that.
- In episode 15 of the Index anime adaption, during the Angel Fall arc, Shirai Kuroko is depicted to have apparently switched with the US President Barack Obama, using his catchphrase "Yes. We. Can". This was not in the light novels and could be seen as an in-joke for the anime producers, considering Kuroko can also mean "black child" literally in kanji and also because the episode was aired during the US presidential elections.
- Satomi Arai's comedic yet thoughtfully mature performance as Kuroko won her the Best Supporting Actress trophy during the Annual Voice Actor Awards in 2010.
- Kuroko also has a collection of Misaka Mikoto's pictures that she keeps in an album named "Onee-sama's secret" as shown in Toaru Kagaku no Railgun anime episode 2.
- Her spikes are labeled with "Kuroko".
- When Kuroko's memories of Misaka Mikoto are erased during the Daihaseisai, Kuroko reacts to Mikoto's close contact, exclaiming, "I'm straight, I swear~!!" This implies that she believed she was straight before she met Mikoto and became infatuated with her.
|Shirai Kuroko||Uiharu Kazari||Konori Mii||Yanagisako Aomi|