Asakura Hao is the main antagonist of the Shaman King manga and anime series. He was born Asaha Doji in Japan during the Heian era and, after rising to prominence as an Onmyōji, was renamed Asakura Hao. In his third life, he was reborn as the twin brother of his descendant Asakura Yoh. He is the most powerful shaman in the entire series and the current Shaman King.
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Being the older twin brother and ancestor of Yoh, Hao is physically very identical to Yoh in many ways, as they both have dark brown hair and brown eyes. Unlike his younger twin, Hao's hair is much longer and extends beyond his waist. He often wears a pale yellow poncho cloak that covers only his upper body, while wearing nothing underneath.
He wears a pair of black fingerless gloves with a red lining with four small protrusions where the knuckles are printed with his own name on them and also a pair of dark red baggy pants with two sections each with a set of three straps on each leg. and shoes with two studs protruding from the toes. He also wears a belt inlaid with the five-pointed star and the straps are also lined with it. A five-pointed star motif is also found in the medium gauge studs he wears. When Hao uses the Over Soul or his Yin Yang Jutsu, his hair is folded into several spikes.
In public, Hao wears dark blue jeans and a white half-buttoned shirt with oversized collars and cuffs.
Hao is a complex, multi-layered individual shaped by a series of difficult circumstances in his life. In the Heian era, he lived with the uncertainty of a corrupt and uncaring nobility that plunged the country into chaos and poverty. He saw the world as a grim and dark place until he met a small demon named Ohachiyo, who taught him all the positive aspects of life. However, after an accident involving Hao's first Over Soul, Ohachiyo became a permanent part of Hao and cursed him with a dangerous Reishi ability. During his teenage years, having witnessed the corruption and greed in the capital, Hao was distant from those around him, but as he grew into adulthood, he became a relatively peaceful man who sought to help the people around him, and through him the Asakura family prospered. It was because of this gentle and kind nature that he took in the cat Matamune, whom he considered his only friend.
Hao became misanthropic over time, as his Reishi abilities became too strong and eventually got out of hand. Negative emotions and thoughts of others constantly overwhelmed him, and since he was unable to turn off his Reishi, the flood of negativity eventually created an "Oni" in his own heart. The internal confusion and disorder that was created eventually led to his desire to create the shamanic realm on Earth and drove him to become the shaman king in order to achieve this main goal. Nevertheless, it was the unjust death of his mother that caused the initial spark of his hatred for humanity.
In his third and most recent incarnation, Hao is generally calm, cruel and always smiling. The occasions when he is truly angry are very rare and when he is angry at someone, that person is usually killed and burned to death by The Spirit Of Fire. He also enjoys watching shaman fights, especially those involving strong shamans, and Asakura Yoh . He is not only interested in this, but he also proclaims that when Yoh reaches his limits, he will become one with him to become the strongest shaman.
Hao sees money as the main reason for corruption in society. He refuses to use it and makes his group follow the philosophy of being completely self-sufficient - even if it means stealing something to get it. While treating Yoh for coffee, Hao gave the Patch in charge a menacing look while asking about the bill, until the Patch relented for fear of being killed.
Hao also turns out to be rather duplicitous. Although generally polite and respectful to his followers, who all worship him largely because he saved their lives, Hao actually cares very little for them and sees them only as a tool to achieve his goals. He doesn't even hesitate to devour their souls if it means getting more power as he already tried to do with Hana-Gumi. Hao in fact despises the vast majority of his followers, knowing from his Reishi that they secretly fear him, an experience he endured for a long time even during his origins because the people around him were both afraid of and hated him, which fuels his disgust. It is true that their faith in Hao collapsed once they learned that he could read their minds all the time and had never told them. The only exceptions to this are Luchist and Opacho, whom Hao views favorably. The former because of his tremendous mental strength while he stays by Hao's side despite knowing of his mind reading abilities. The latter because she is pure of heart and follows him out of genuine loyalty.
This extends somewhat to the first anime series in which Hao is portrayed differently. In this continuity, most of Hao's background (such as his Reishi) is not explained, with his misanthropy being attributed to people fearing him as a monster because of his shamanic strength. Hao believes that this is caused by humanity's fragile willful nature, and therefore despises humanity for its mental and spiritual weakness, believing that it is the source of conflict and discord and thus wishes to purge humanity and create his shamanic kingdom to realize his vision of peace. . It is as a result of this that Hao becomes obsessed with the shamans he considers strong, even engaging in acts of purging as he melted the Fire Spirit's ice from the top of a mountain to cause a flood to eliminate the strong from the weak. Towards the end of this series, Hao granted power to his followers and revealed to Manta that he cared very little for those who died as a result of the overload, as it would prove that they were weak and therefore useless to his vision. He even despised Opacho herself when her usually calm demeanor broke down, exposing her hatred, making her afraid of him.
In the original manga and the 2021 anime, Hao is portrayed in a much more sympathetic light, as it is revealed that despite his cruelty and destructive acts, he is actually a deeply vulnerable person unable to move forward due to his obsessions. Using an analogy, Anna described Hao as a "Princess who has been caught by the Demon Lord of hate" with the only way to defeat him being to save him from himself. Hao, in fact, mourns his mother to this day and bemoans her loss and the lack of her company, something he keeps entirely to himself. When he was seen crying by X-Laws who tried to attack him, Hao erupted in a fit of murderous rage as it was a side of him he did not want to expose. It was finally through the intervention of his mother's spirit that he finally gave up his darker impulses.
Hao somewhat disliked being given family titles, as he coldly looked at Yoh when he addressed him as "Nii-chan" (older brother) and asked his nephew Hana to stop calling him "uncle," although he would later address both of them the same way.
Capabilities and powers
As a former shamanic master who died and was reincarnated twice, Hao has an extremely overwhelming level of Furyoku, 1,250,000 in total, in his current life. In his first life, according to Asakura Yohmei, he was so strong that even the strongest Shikigami swore loyalty to him.
Because Hao has lived both as an Onmyouji and also as a Patch priest of the Patch tribe and was born with all the knowledge of his two previous lives, he has a large arsenal of shamanic techniques and spells.
- Onmyōdō (陰陽道): Hao's original abilities from a taijutsu master in his first life gave him complete control over the elements and powers of divination. He is not only able to materially manipulate the five elements of nature (Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal, and Water) but also spiritually, as evidenced by the conversion of the Fire Spirit into the Water Spirit, albeit temporarily. Even without the Fire Spirit, Hao has great elemental and divination abilities and can easily bend oni and demigods to his will. However, with the addition of the Spirit of Fire, one can only assume that he can greatly amplify the circular properties of his art by using it as an energy source. However, the Spirit of Fire primarily uses physical attacks, and on occasion, his fire attributes have been used in combat. Since Hao is very fond of the element of fire, he is rarely seen using his taijutsu arts in both the manga series and the anime series. Nevertheless, the combination that his Onmyōdō and Fire Spirit abilities form definitely gives him an Over Soul second in power only to the Great Spirit.
- Reishi: With this ability inherited from Ohachiyo, Hao can read the hearts of others and retains this ability in each of his reincarnations. Although he first used it to help humans avoid suffering, he began to see the darker side of human nature, which filled him with contempt for humanity and drove his desire to create a world with only shamans. In the final battle, he loses this ability when confronted by the multitude of spirits and is surrounded by benevolence.
- Taizan Fukun no Sai (泰山府君の祭): The technique requires the shaman to have mastered the five elements of the pentagram and he must defeat the seventy-five lords of Hell in order to reach Taizan Fukun to negotiate with him . Thanks to this technique, Hao was reborn five hundred years later as a member of the Patch Tribe, and again five hundred years later.
- Curse Reversal (呪詛返しJuso-gaeshi ): This technique allows Hao to send the effects of a Furyoku attack back to the caster. Hao is skilled enough to use it like a newborn and without seeming to recognize the opponent.
- Ring of Fire (炎 の 輪, "Honō no Wa"): An attack similar to Yoh's Shockwave Buddha Giri
His first Guardian Ghost was a demon named Ohachiyo when he was younger. Hao only used it once to create a small kanabō Over Soul with a broken katana as a shamanic medium.
As he came of age in his first life, Hao used his Onmyōdō magic to transform the two pairs of Shikigami Zenki and Goki into demigod spirits, which he would later use to protect his book of teachings called the Chō-Senjiryakketsu. It was also at this time that he gave a cat he had rescued, Matamune, part of his Furyoku to keep with him after Hao's death.
When he was reincarnated in the Patch Tribe, Hao stole the Fire Spirit, which was one of the five elemental spirits created from the Great Spirit himself. However, as he was reincarnated again, the Fire Spirit did the same, and Hao had his third life, constantly feeding him the souls of those he killed to make him much stronger.
After winning the Shaman Fight, Hao became the new Shaman King and assimilated into the Great Spirit. This gives him both omniscience and omnipotence. He is now able to absorb other souls just by staring at them.
Born in Japan by Asanoha, he was named Douji Asaha by his mother. However, a group of humans killed his mother Asanoha, because they thought she was a demon. Having his home burned down, Asaha wandered and lived alone without a purpose, all the while believing himself to be a boy with strange demonic powers and thinking of exterminating all humanity. One day, while sitting by a door, he met a spirit named Ohachiyo and they became fast friends. Ohachiyo gave him the nickname "Douji Mappa" after noticing the similarity between Asaha and Asanoha's names. The demon persuaded Asaha to forget about his own revenge and enjoy the aspects of the new life instead. Ohachiyo taught him many things such as fishing, writing and especially the dangerous Reishi ability.
Asaha followed his word and lived life with a smile on his face, for a while at least. However, when a guard apparently heard him conversing with himself at night, he immediately suspected him of being a demon and reported him to the monk Densen Hoshi. Densen confronted Hao but turned out to be a fraud and was easily overpowered by him. As he recognized that the man was the one who had killed his mother and committed his first murder. By overexerting his Furyoku, Asaha was unable to keep control of his Over Soul and unwittingly consumed Ohachiyo's power.
Asaha would find himself on the streets of Kyoto where he was found lying unconscious by an Onmyōji Hamo Tadatomo and his apprentice Daitaro Hoshi . Hamo was looking for Asaha as the source of many Onis summoned to the area. After eliminating all the Onis and seeing Asaha's potential, Tadatomo took him on as his apprentice.
At an annual ceremony to exorcise the Onis capital, Asaha's apprentice companion Daitaro was used as a test subject by Tadatomo, who intended to create a Shikigami human hybrid that ordinary humans could see. Asaha tried to intervene but was restrained by Tadatomo's Shikigami until Tadatomo was killed by Daitaro, making them disappear. Although their aides claimed they should flee, Asaha decided to outdo Tadatomo by defeating Daitaro, using the Onis in his own body to take control of him. Within five years, his skills made him the guardian of Kyoto and inspired by his position, he was given the name Asakura Hao.
With the experience of his childhood, Hao became a talented Onmyōji and founded the Asakura family in Kyoto. Due to his loneliness, Hao created Onis all the time, but it was not a problem for him because he had the ability to control Onis. During this time, Hao met a sickly stray cat whom he named Matamune. Hao declared Matamune to be his only friend and gave Matamune some of his spiritual energy in the hope that Matamune would stay with him forever.
Nevertheless, the curse implanted on Hao from Ohachiyo was permanent and eventually drove Hao completely mad. Hao would eventually learn about the existence of the shaman king. Because of his plans to destroy all humanity, the Asakura family ousted him, although he remained in Kyoto where he founded a branch of the Asakura family. He was finally killed by one of his own relatives during the shaman fights.
Hao's Yin-Yang Jutsu, the mastery of the five elements, prevented his permanent death because he could now control the circumstances of his own reincarnation. He was able to gain the ability to control his soul by using the Taizan Kuzun ritual. Although Taizan Kuzun can only be attained by surpassing the seventy-five lords of hell, successfully making a contract with him gives the ability to raise the dead or reincarnate at will.
Hao then chose to reincarnate 500 years later as a member of the Patch tribe, those who organized the Shaman King tournament, then he then stole the fire spirit from the Patch tribe. During this time as a Patch, he had a wife and child. With his new guardian ghost, Hao conquered many great enemies with such ease, including the four Seminoa warriors, who heard his goals decided to stop him.
He again projected his idea of a shaman world but was rejected by the shamans he was trying to promote. He had the same plans to rule the world and kill all humanity, but he was stopped by Asakura Yohken and Matamune. Despite the fact that he died before becoming Shaman King, he achieved his goal of capturing the legendary Spirit of Fire to use as a guardian ghost in his next life. His wife and child whom he left behind were about to be killed, when the Patch tribe realized that they were now missing a priest, they allowed them both to live on in order to preserve the Patch Priests' lineage. As a result, several generations later, Silva of the Ten Patch Officers was born from the same lineage of Hao.
After being killed as a member of the Patch 500 years earlier, he chose to be reborn into his original lineage to become stronger. His late actions were planned by Asakura Yohmei and it was decided that Hao should be killed upon his rebirth. However, when Yohmei was about to strike the child, he quickly hesitated, and that was enough for Hao to summon the Fire Spirit. Mikihisa stepped in the way after Hao tried to kill Yohmei with a punch and got badly burned in the process. Hao then told Keiko to stay still because he didn't want his important "other half" to die before he was born. With these words, as he laughed and then disappeared.
After escaping from the Asakura family, he was apparently raised by Brocken Meyer . When he was five years old, he and Brocken went in search of new henchmen. Wherever Hao went, he left a path of destruction in his wake. He killed Lyserg's parents when they recognized him as a great evil and tried to stop him, meanwhile, he mutilated Cebin Mendel for unknown reasons, then he killed a military unit while searching for Mohamed Tabarsi . then he also destroyed the church-orphanage of Marco Lasso and killed everyone in the church. By the age of eight, Hao had gathered an incredible number of henchmen to whom he would teach many of his own personal techniques, such as the shamanic oracle.
Shaman fights in Tokyo
Hao was first seen as an unidentified person among the other competitors watching the battle of Yoh and Ren, smiling and commenting that both of their shamanic powers were slowly increasing and stated that the winner would certainly be a great obstacle in the near future.
Journey across America
Hao is officially introduced for the first time when the shamans gather to leave for America in the Patch plane. He arrives in front of Yoh and his group, announcing that he is the future Shaman King and decides to play with them and test their strength. However, he is later interrupted by his own followers telling him that they might miss the plane if he continues to play with them, which he accepts, but before telling Yoh that he was impressed by his determination and that he would make a useful ally before leaving with his allies.
Shaman fights the second round
As Hao watches Yoh's progress in his first match, he is impressed by Yoh's first Over Soul "Spirit of the Sword" and especially by how quickly he was able to master it in just one month. He then goes to follow Ren out of the stadium. Ren notices him and tells Hao to stop following him. Hao then offers Ren a first chance to join his own group but he refuses and quickly attacks Hao. But Hao blocks his attack so easily and quickly, reducing it to ashes. As Hao leaves for his own match, Ren is shocked by Hao's powerful strength and returns to the stadium to learn more about Hao.
Hao's own team - Hoshi-Gumi consists of himself, Luchist and Opacho. Hoshi-Gumi has to fight one of the X-law teams. Before the match started, Hao told Opacho and Luchist to leave the area so that he can fight them all at the same time by himself. Knowing that they will lose, the X-laws decide to fight Hao one-on-one so that the other shamans can learn more about him. With one attack, Hao quickly summons the Fire Spirit and kills two of the X-laws. The third member is crushed by the Fire Spirit. Hao then later reveals that his shamanic medium is air itself; he admits that this is the case because what else would be a better fire medium. Marco is furious because this shows that Hao doesn't care if anyone knows his secret and he is shown mocking the sacrifices of the X-laws he killed. However,
Fortunately, the force field around the ring takes the full blast of the explosion and it appears that Hao was not killed. As the smoke clears, Hao is still unprotected but the Fire Spirit has now turned into water. With his knowledge of the five elements, Hao then converted the Fire Spirit into water to protect himself. As a reward for their wise bravery, Hao gives the X-laws the honor of being eaten by the fire spirit to allow it to become stronger.
Meanwhile, when Hao learns that Yoh is about to leave the Shaman Fight, he then soon threatens to kill the Golem and the children unless Yoh returns to the shaman competition. Hao then orders Luchist to help Yoh eliminate the X-laws. Shortly after that, Hao watches "The Ren" team fight one of the Gandhara teams and realizes that Horohoro's real name was revealed to be Usui Horokeu. While Hao goes to his lair and starts the Star Festival. He then orders his henchmen to foil Gandhara's plan to create the Five Warriors himself. Meanwhile, John of the X-laws uses a secret satellite to fire a beam to destroy him. This later fails when Hao reveals his armored Over Soul that protects him. The Fire Spirit then completely destroys John's soul.
Hao goes to the area where Marco and John are and he meets Anna there. Anna attacks with Zenki and Goki, to which he answers with the Spirit of Fire, Anna uses Furyoku Nullification to completely cancel his attack. Anna then uses a curse reflection to hurt Hao, prompting Hao to release his Armored Over Soul: the Raven. As the Hana-Gumi team arrives in the battle as spirits and asks if Hao is simply using them. later, Hao reveals the truth and tries to absorb their souls, but Anna uses one of Hao's ancient guardian ghosts to save them. Hao is impressed by Anna and doesn't want to fight with her or hurt her and asks her and himself why he can't read her mind and she hasn't used her full power yet. Yoh arrives and convinces Hao to have coffee with him. They both talk. He then leaves after feeling Yohken's presence in Yoh's mind.
During the fight between The Ren team and Funbari Onsen, we see Hao relaxing in a hot spring while listening to the match on the radio. When Hao learns that he apparently has no friends, shocking everyone, he reveals that this thought was only in Yoh's head the whole time. He soon learns that Yoh has a new technique that he learned in hell.
Invade the plants
After the end of the second rounds of Shaman Fights, the patch brought the team "Hoshi-Gumi", the team "The Ren", the team "Funbari Onsen" and the team "XI" to the continent of Mu, where the third and last rounds were to be held. But instead of continuing the competition, the other three teams forfeited, making Hao the new Shaman King. Lip and Rap then led him through the Plants to the Shrine of the Kings where Hao would sleep an alias like death while being united with the Great Spirit. When he finally wakes up, he sends a message to the Oracle Bells: "So small".
He then effortlessly kills everyone with a single glance, except for Rutherfor, Opacho and Yoh. Opacho commented that the Hao she knew was no longer there, and Yoh was able to deduce that Hao was controlling her body even though her mind had already evolved as a Shaman King. Yoh then declares that this Hao is nothing but a walking corpse and decapitates him. Hao, however, probably does not die because he is omnipotent after his fusion with the Great Spirit.
After smiling, Yoh's soul and Amidamaru's soul are absorbed by Hao. When Yoh wakes up, he realizes that he must be inside the Great Spirit. Hao appears, revealing to Yoh that he is in fact inside himself and in the highest society of the Great Spirit, the society of the shaman king where only those whom Hao wishes to enter can come. The two begin a conversation in which Yoh reveals that he doesn't like humans either because they are really destroying the Earth. But he also admits that he could never go so far as to kill them, so Hao orders him to leave. Somehow, Yoh is not banished and Tao Ren, Lyserg Diethel, Chocolove McDonell and Usui Horokeu also appear. Then begins a fierce battle between the five elemental warriors and the shaman king.
The battle is so evenly matched that the fight ends in a complete stalemate until Hao reveals that the fight was merely his preparation for their defeat and creates a supernova that turns into a black hole. As the five are being dragged away, the Soul Train appears out of nowhere, anchoring the five. On board are all the people Hao killed when he became Shaman King, as well as the dead family members and friends of the five elemental warriors. Yoh finally manages to calm Hao down by letting Opacho jump into the black hole, which Hao immediately stops because of the connection between these two.
Hao realized that his quest was not for what he had become but for something else he couldn't remember. The Asakura family says that his quest started because of his dead mother. Yoh finally knows what Hao is looking for and tells him that his late mother was always by his side as a spirit. Hao realizes that his mother could have been his guardian ghost and Over Soul, but he was so blinded by his own quest that he couldn't see the real truth. As his mother arrives on the scene, Hao seems delighted to see her again, even though she slapped him for everything he had done and embarrassed him in front of everyone. Afterwards, he lets everyone return to Earth but then tells Yoh that he still hates humanity, but will let them sort out their problems before passing judgement, and not to be so cheeky.
Funbari no Uta
After Yoh, Anna and their infant son, Asakura Hana are killed in the Middle East, they enter Hao's kingdom in the Great Spirit. There, Anna forces him to revive the three of them through blackmail. Hao does this by implanting onis into Hana to act as a fail-safe to prevent her from dying.
At the end of the series, it shows Hao happily watching over Yoh and his friends alongside Matamune, implying that he has finally given up his hatred and accepted his role as Shaman King.
After his ascension to become the Shaman King, the G8 called a meeting and with a vote of no confidence against Hao, launched the Corn Flower to decide the fate of the world. Several years later, after Hana's death by intentionally invoking Onis to fight Tao Men , he appears to Hana and even lectures her on his misuse of Onis, before offering to resurrect him one last time if he can defeat Yoh, who seems to be himself. for 13 years.
After Hana's defeat, Hao decides to bring Yoh into the loop as they watch over Hana. At the same time, he gives clear instructions to Thalim and the other former Patch officials that although they can observe Hana's progress, they cannot interfere in any way. At the same time, he notes that Yosuke's kidnapping of Amidamaru was convenient because he was pampering Hana too much. He also declares his intention to have Sakurai as Hana's guardian ghost while telling the confused priests that they will eventually understand his decision to have a mere human ghost as his nephew's guardian. Later, as Hao declares his determination to change the world with the corn flower into Yoh, YVS appears and declares his intention to maintain the status quo at all costs.
Very little is said about his past in the 2001 anime series, only how he was reincarnated twice while he stole the Spirit of Fire. Because Asakura Yohken and Matamune were manga characters, it is never mentioned who killed him, only that it was a nameless Asakura and that it was done while his powers were sealed in the 1080 prayer beads. Hao also shows much more interest in watching Yoh's progress in the anime series
Hao's role was played directly as the main antagonist throughout the 2001 anime series, he was shown to be cruel, indifferent and deceitful, and he was shown to smile when maiming enemies and he has no problem killing his own followers in his own group of henchmen. . But in the manga series, he starts out that way, but he eventually turns out to be more of a tragic villain. This is supported by Manta's dream that Hao is a princess who must be "freed".
At the end of the 2001 anime series, he keeps the Fire Spirit and makes it devour a big chunk of the Great Spirit to gain power. But instead of winning the tournament while he had the Great Spirit as in the manga series, Hao was finally killed by Yoh who had received the help of shamans from all over the world, forming a new giant operating system with which Yoh would cut both Hao and the Spirit of Fire in half at the end.
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