Shinobu Sensui (in Japanese: 仙水 忍, Sensui Shinobu), also known as Black Angel, is one of the villains in Yu Yu Hakusho, serving as the main antagonist during the Chapter Black Saga. He is a former Underworld Detective and the leader of the Sensui Seven.
Sensui was a tall, thin, broad shouldered man with tan skin, an ovoid jewel in the middle of his forehead and a rather long neck. He normally kept his hair short in a Caesar cut, with a bang arching slightly over his forehead. He wore a casual long-sleeved dark shirt and dark jeans. His long limbs gave the illusion of a slender build, though in reality, while he was not bulky, his torso at least was both very muscular and very heavily scarred, both of which were the results of his intense physical training.
In his younger years, he had a longer haircut and wore clothes similar to his current attire. In a flashback dating back to his times as a student, he was seen wearing a gakuran, a Western-style school uniform
He was generally refined and polite (condescending as Minoru), and displayed a curious sense of honor when he allowed Hiei, Kurama and Kuwabara to try and avenge Yusuke's death. Shinobu bore an enormous amount of guilt in killing, particularly when he used to kill demons without question during his time as a Spirit Detective in the name of humanity, whose cruelty ended up driving him mad and engendered a fierce loathing of his own species.
He seemed despondent after killing Yusuke, expecting some sort of catharsis with his black-and-white view of the world, and is visibly disgusted when he was forced to kill demons while fighting a resurrected Yusuke on the Plateau of the Beheaded in Makai.
During his years in hiding, Sensui created seven alternate personalities to deal with the stresses on his mind. Only four of his alternate personalities are ever revealed and they are as follows:
- Minoru - a charismatic speaker who was in control during the beginning of the Chapter Black Saga.
- Kazuya - a sadistic killer who takes over as Yusuke gets the upper hand fighting Minoru.
- Naru - a female personality spoken of by Itsuki who writes poetry.
- Shinobu - the leader and strongest of his personalities.
Powers and Abilities
Sensui is a master of Lightning Kickboxing, Resshūken, Fissure Kick Fist), an elegant fighting style that mixes fluid arm blocks with powerful kicks and is said to be only available to those who have already mastered all forms of martial arts. Sensui also wields Holy Aura (聖光気, Seikōki, Saint Light Energy), a special type of energy that is said to be the purest of all auras, mastered only after 40 years of training, though Sensui mastered it in just over six years with his seven different personalities.
- By adding Spirit Energy to this style, Sensui created a new fighting style that he calls Reikō Resshūken , literally translated as Spirit Light Fissure Kick Fist), which Kurama describes as "energy and style as one". Reiko Resshuken often involves him creating orbs of spirit energy with his hands, which he then kicks toward the opponent, enhancing their offensive force. The English dubs pronounces this as "Rayko Reshuyuken."
- As Kazuya, Sensui fights in a more brutal, sadistic manner. His fighting style completely changes once he activates his Sacred Energy, because the style depends on which type of armor he's activated: the ultimate defense or the ultimate offense.
- Resshū Kō Kyū Ha (literally translated as Fissure Kick Crimson Ball Wave): This technique was Sensui's unusual variation of the Spirit Gun. He generated a ball of Spirit Energy, one strong enough to, at the very least, demolish an apartment suite, in one hand before kicking it. During his career as a Spirit Detective, this attack (or something virtually identical) appeared to be one of his primary methods of killing demons. Sensui is also capable of controlling the movement of this energy with his mind, making it float around at whatever speeds and directions he chooses. He is also capable of firing this attack without kicking it by simply directing the palm of his hand at a target and manifesting the energy orb. The orb will then fly in the direction of his palm. Presumably, this way of firing the technique is less effective than kicking it. This attack was strong enough to completely neutralize Yusuke's Spirit Gun despite being a fraction of the Spirit Gun's size.
- Splinter Resshūken (literally translated as Fissure Kick Violet Blaze Shots): Generating a field of energy that coalesces into a minefield of tiny energy spheres, Sensui then coalesces the balls into a powerful single energy sphere that he then kicks to his opponent. The scatter shot effect of this technique effectively ensures that the opponent gets hit at least once or more, and appears to display homing capabilities.
- Sacred Energy (literally translated as Saint Light Energy): A special type of energy that is said to be the purest and most powerful kind, which Koenma calls the highest echelon of power. He also said that achieving the use of this type of power takes at least forty years of discipline and grueling training. However, Sensui managed to cheat by dividing the forty year-training requirement amongst his other personalities, effectively managing to achieve this pinnacle in just six years. He then added that an extra requirement was that people had to be receptive to this power and possess a desire to correct the world around them, operating on a higher plane and transcending the physical realm, all of which were qualities that even Genkai did not have. In the Japanese dub and the manga, Shinobu stated he is the only one of the seven personalities that can use Sacred Energy because of his talents that make him stand out from others and that he awakened it on his own without any help from his other personalities.
- It is from this mastery of spiritual power, that Sensui derives his code name. By wrapping himself in it, Sensui is even able to fly and shield himself from any kind of damage dealt from most, if not all, A-class fighters, as seen when Hiei uses the Dragon of the Darkness Flame on him and all it did was push Sensui before burning out in pseudo-space. Channeling the energy seems to improve his physical capabilities as well, granting him improved strength, speed, and durability.
- Sacred Energy Armor (literally translated as Energy Steel Combat Cloth): Surrounding his body with Sacred Energy, Sensui can create two forms of battle armor: one for much greater defense, the other for much greater offense. While using the first suit of armor, Sensui was able to dominate Hiei, Kurama and Kuwabara (after their powers had equaled that of A-class demons). Despite all that, Sensui's Sacred Energy Armor was not strong enough to defend against the newly-revived Yusuke's supercharged Spirit Gun.
- Switching to his Offensive Armor, Sensui increased his physical attack abilities to the point where the shockwave from a single punch could destroy an entire mesa in Demon World from a great distance away. This form was capable of maintaining a clear advantage in battle against Yusuke in his Mazoku Demon Form until Raizen took control of Yusuke.
- Sacred Energy Muscle: This ability is essentially just Sensui "flexing" his Sacred Energy powers to overcome an opposing energy discharge, such as when he used the ability to overcome Koenma's Mafuken spell.
- Energy Projection Sensui is capable of utilizing his Sacred Energy aura as a physical force. Simply by increasing its intensity, he can project it outward in at least two ways; as a phenomenon similar to a very strong wind, or as a series of blasts that manifest as blunt-force strikes to a target.
- Twisted Twister (literally translated as Fissure Break Wind Encampment Fist) or Aura Vortex: Sensui first spins around extremely fast and creates a strong tornado. The tornado then engulfs his opponent. Inside the tornado, the wind slices his opponent like a sharp knife. This technique is very similar to Jin's Tornado Fist Explosion/an offensive version of the Wind Barrier.
- Energy Gun (literally translated as Energy Hardening Gun): Never really named in the anime, both Japanese or English, this weapon is unique to the Sensui personality called Kazuya, the bloodthirsty killer created in the aftermath of the Feast of Human Vices that Sensui stumbled upon. When Kazuya comes out to play, Sensui's right hand is replaced with a gun barrel that automatically hardens Spirit Energy into the shape of a bullet. In the manga, this barrel simply protrudes from a cauterized stump, while in the anime it emerges from a gunmetal mount that covers the stump of the right hand. This ability was never used for anything more than a single surprise attack and torturing Yusuke, as Kazuya was a fairly poor fighter despite his sadism and brutality.
- Sacred Energy Beam: Unnamed anime-only technique that fires a Sacred Energy blast. Capable of eradicating hundreds of low-level demons in a single sweeping discharge.