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|“||Give... her back... I'm... I'm going... to save herrrrrrrrr!||„|
|~ Taro Namatame regarding Nanako.|
Taro Namatame is a character and the secondary antagonist of Persona 4. He is originally introduced as a local politician undergoing a major scandal following the reveal of his affair with TV announcer Mayumi Yamano (whose death sparks the events of the game). Later however, he is revealed to have a much more intimate relationship with the main story.
He was voiced by Zach Hanks in the game and by Matthew Mercer in the anime.
Taro Namatame is a man with short black hair, brown eyes, and a mole on his forehead. He wears a white collar long sleeved shirt and black pants. When he works at his family business he wears an emerald delivery uniform consisting of a cap, jacket and slacks. During his previous job, he used to wear a black suit with a white collar and black tie, white gloves, and a white band of city council secretary on his right arm.
As Kunino-Sagiri, Namatame takes on a titanic monsterous form after merging with many of the ambient Shadows in the TV world. He resembles a deformed dark-skinned humanoid with red rings running the length of his body, and wears only a white tunic printed with symbols representing "Love and Peace." He also features a set of small red wings on his back and an old-style TV antenna affixed to his head. Also affixed to his head is a titanic set of planetary gears shaped like peace signs, which he can use to control the bodies of those around him.
Before people found out about his affair, Namatame was thought of as an outgoing man with a fun personality (though this side of him is never seen in the game). When the protagonist interacts with him, he is timid. He speaks few words, and always seems scared. He believed what he was doing was the right thing when discovered he could throw people into the Midnight Channel. He hoped that it would keep next victims safe, not knowing what kind of place it actually was. When faced with the world he thought was a safe haven, Namatame described it as an abomination.
StoryTaro Namatame is introduced as a delivery person who was in his house talking to Tohru Adachi to kill Nanako Dojima & went into the TV. The investigation team find Nanako with Taro and attempt to reason with him, but instead trigger his abrupt transforms into Kunino-Sagiri, a shadowy Angel-like creature & defeated by Investigation team. The Investigation team interrogates Taro where Tohru Adachi is in Mayonaka TV to solve the problems for himself.
However, should the protagonist manage to keep everyone calm, Namatame was spared this fate in the Good Ending. Detective Adachi decided to transport Namatame out in a couple of days, apparently without Dojima's authority. Namatame rested, and had a visit from the Team the next day.
Here, the Team managed to convince Namatame that they too could enter the television, and had reason to believe that he was not the real culprit. Namatame believes them and reveals his entire role, up to the point of Nanako's "rescue attempt." He also convinces the Team that he loved Yamano with all his heart and would not think of murdering her or hurt her in anyway, notwithstanding all the other three students he had kidnapped. He finds out from the Team that all this while his mission had only brought the people he "saved" closer to their deaths. He apologizes profusely and asks the Team to capture the real culprit — the one who had murdered Yamano and Konishi.
It is ultimately revealed that Namatame was merely a pawn in the real culprit's plan, having been manipulated into believing that the TV world was a safe haven wherein people appearing on the Midnight Channel (like Mayumi Yamano and Saki Konichi) could be protected from their imminent death (not knowing that the channel was actually what CAUSED those people to die).
He was transported out of the hospital the next day, and his immediate fate is left unknown. However, in the epilogue of the extended true ending to Persona 4: Golden, he can be seen running again for public office, determined to do good in Inaba as a way of penance for his actions.
Powers and Abilities
Like Persona 4's Protagonist and the Murderer, Namatame has the ability to open a portal to the world of the Midnight Channel in any television turned off at midnight. However, because he lacks insight into the true nature of the world, he uses the power carelessly, making him a dangerous criminal.
As Kunino-Sagiri, he has access to the full range of elemental attacks present in Persona 4, as well as the unique "Unerring Judgment" and "Control" spells. These, respectively, inflict massive damage on the entire party disregarding resistances and take control of assisting party members– the number rising as his HP becomes lower.
- If the player visits the Samegawa Riverbed or the Central Shopping District on certain days, Namatame will be sitting on the rocks. If the player speaks to him, he will say "Who in the world could've done such a... [pause] It's horrible... too horrible... [pause] .....". If the player visits the Shopping District on certain days, Namatame will be in the southern part, and when spoken to, he will respond with "Why...? I just had an affair, and look what it turned into... [pause] Mayumi... Forgive me..." Other lines of dialogue include "I was fired from work in spring... But I'm helping with the family business now. The life here is nice too..." After the completion of Mitsuo Kubo's dungeon Namatame will have this to say, "The incidents...Are they really over...? Everything was really that boy's fault?" and later in the game Namatame will say; "If the police can't gather the evidence...Mayumi... won't be able to rest in peace...I hope... that justice will be served..."
- Given the evidence that Izanami gave both Adachi and the Protagonist different forms of Izanagi, it can be assumed that Namatame would have been able to summon an Izanagi of his own. It is unknown if he had ever been aware of it or not, but it is most likely that he never learned about it.
- In the English release of the game, when confronting Namatame on December 4, he states once "I knew that the three of you who I 'saved' went back to your normal lives," when, in fact, he "saved" four of the people in the room with him: Yukiko, Naoto, Kanji, and Rise.
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Persona 3 FES
Persona 4: Arena & Persona 4: Arena Ultimax
Persona 5 The Royal
Persona 5 Scramble: The Phantom Strikers