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Boxart of Persona 2: Innocent Sin (PS version) featuring Tatsuya Suou and his Shadow Self

A Shadow Self is a unique type of Shadow that appears in the Persona series and in Devil Survivor 2.

AppearancesEdit

ProfileEdit

Unlike the lesser Shadows, they appear as twisted Jungian archetypal mirror entities of the person they represent, often with red or golden eyes. Shadow Selves often embody the repressed negative qualities of their human counterparts and wish to kill their originals and take their place in the world. Shadow Selves fight either with a "Reverse" version of their counterpart's initial Persona or ultimate Persona, or they transform into a large twisted version of the Persona they will become once accepted. Any being with an ego, regardless of species can have a Shadow Self. A Shadow Self is not to be confused with a Cognition, although some Shadow Selves can take traits of how people perceive them, and some Cognitions are very similar to being one's Shadow Self.

Megami Ibunroku PersonaEdit

A prototype of the Shadow Self concept is Pandora, the ultimate manifestation of Maki's nihilism and repressed negative thoughts, much like how an actual Shadow Self is. In fact, she can even understand acceptance and merges with the ideal Maki, sending all party members back to the real world.

Persona 2: Innocent SinEdit

Following the defeat of King Leo, Maya Amano has the children saved from the Sky Museum spread a rumor counter to the rumor spread by the Masked Circle blaming them for the bombings. Due to the two rumors circulating, the party was spared conversion to the Masked Circle, though five Shadow Selves were created from their subconscious.

Shadow Maya infiltrates the party after they regroup at the Kuzunoha Detective Agency, and attacks them at Mt. Iwato, but is blocked by the real Maya and is killed in battle. Shadow Yukino is confronted at the Caracol and, depending on the player's earlier choices, is either defeated by Yukino Mayuzumi and Anna Yoshizaka, or commits suicide alongside Anna. The remaining 3 Shadows spread to three of the four Zodiac Temples, guarding the Crystal Skulls within, but are defeated by Tatsuya's party.

Persona 2: Eternal PunishmentEdit

The Shadow Selves in Eternal Punishment are directly created by Nyarlathotep to kill Maya Amano's party as they journey through the Monado Mandala. Unlike the Innocent Sin Shadow Selves, they are fought two at a time, and their strength varies depending on the decisions Maya's party made in the scene prior to fighting them.

In the special scenario included in the PSP rerelease of Eternal Punishment, the Shadow Self of Shiori Miyashiro appears in the form of a masked version of herself.

Persona 3 FESEdit

While Shadow Selves are not directly mentioned and do not directly appear, Metis is heavily implied to be Aigis' Shadow, as she represents Aigis' suppressed negative emotions of the wish to return into a machine to cope with the loss of the protagonist, a figure resembling her is seen emerging from Aigis in the memory the surviving SEES members view right before the fight with ???, and, much like characters who initially obtained their Personas by accepting their Shadow, Aigis suffers extreme physical and mental fatigue when she accepts Metis as a part of herself.

Persona 4 / Golden / Manga / AnimationEdit

"I am a shadow... The true self..."
—Recurring quote of every shadow self upon entering boss battle.

Shadow Selves appear before people thrown into the Midnight Channel, and kill them if the fog over the TV World lifts before the person accepts them or before they are rescued. The ones fought in the game all represent repressed negative thoughts by their real life counterparts, only exaggerated to threatening proportions.

Unlike Shadow Selves in the Persona 2 duology, these Shadows transform into larger, more monstrous forms to fight and transform into Personas when accepted. In The Animation, despite their desire to kill their originals and take their place in the world, some of the Shadow Selves seem to show happiness upon being accepted; while others maintain a neutral expression.

The Shadow Selves fought in the Persona 4 anthology include:

Persona 4 ArenaEdit

Shadow Labrys, the Shadow Self of Labrys, is the final boss of the game. Just like the Shadow Selves of the Investigation Team, she is born from Labrys' repressed negative thoughts, but is exaggerated to life threatening proportions. Unlike the Investigation Team's Shadows, she does not transform into a monstrous form to attack.

The Shadow Selves of several of the other fighters appear, including those who never faced their own, namely Shadow Mitsuru, Shadow Akihiko, Shadow Aigis and Shadow Yu, but they are later revealed not to be Shadows, but the Malevolent Entity taking their form. However, Teddie and Elizabeth do not face their "shadows" in their story modes.

Persona 4 Arena UltimaxEdit

The Shadow Selves of all characters will also be playable as alternate forms of their other selves known as "Shadow-Types", with a new ability called "Shadow Rampage" which replaces the "Burst" ability. Elizabeth, Margaret, Adachi, Marie, Shadow Labrys, and the two versions of Sho do not have Shadow-Types. However, a Shadow Marie exists in the game's coding. Labrys also has a Shadow-Type that is distinct from Shadow Labrys, which notably uses Ariadne instead of Asterius.

It is revealed that they are fakes created from regular shadows by the Malevolent Entity, as they state that they are perfect copies based of the Investigation Team's and Shadow Operatives' personal data, and are able to perfectly mimic their fighting styles and shadow personalities. Due to this they are extremely hostile even to those who aren't the person they were transformed into the Shadow of. They are only able to exist within the Red Fog and even then their existence will only last for a certain amount of time. Upon defeat they dissolve into black goo, while Persona Fragments appear and flow into the sky to Yasogami High School. Certain Shadows like Shadow Ken and Koromaru are able to survive a fight until hit with a lethal attack. They can also hide their yellow eyes until they reveal their true nature. However, they take no effort in trying to hide the fact that they are fakes in order to draw their originals into fighting them.

Despite being fakes, they are very similar to the original and in some cases even have humanizing points. One example is that Yu Narukami realized Shadow Aigis sought to recruit Labrys in order for her to bond with her master Sho Minazuki, who is also a lonely being hurt by the Kirijo Group's experiments. Another is that when defeated in the P4 story line, Shadow Ken states that they never originally wanted to fight, with the notable exception of the highly aggressive Shadow Aigis, and was only forced by the Malevolent Entity.

Although not including with the rest, fake Shuji Ikutsuki's are also made, but have no fighting capability and are mostly used by Sho to vent his anger towards his adoptive father. In Adachi's chapter Sho reveals he intended on taking Magatsu-Izanagi and forcing it to become a shadow via some unknown method, but his plans were foiled before he could show how to achieve this.

The full cast of Shadows, listed by Arcana, is as follows:

  • 0 - Fool - Shadow Aigis, Shadow Yu
  • I - Magician: Shadow Junpei, Shadow Yosuke
  • II - Priestess: Shadow Yukiko
  • III - Empress: Shadow Mitsuru
  • IV - Emperor: Shadow Akihiko, Shadow Kanji
  • VI - Lovers: Shadow Rise, Shadow Yukari
  • VII - Chariot: Shadow Chie
  • VIII - Justice: Shadow Ken
  • X - Fortune: Shadow Labrys, Shadow Naoto
  • XI - Strength: Shadow Koromaru
  • XVII - Star: Shadow Teddie

Persona 4: Dancing All NightEdit

Bizarrely, the Midnight Stage acts as the Shadow Selves of the characters, with each member of Kanamin Kitchen having their own stage that embodies them. When they succumb to the stage's brainwashing and discard their 'self' to be the 'self' others want them to be, the stage captures them in the ribbons used by the antagonist. Then a black miasma wrap them in a cocoon, which transform them into a Shadow which represents how people want them to be. The Investigation Team must dance in order to free them and revert them back to their original selves.

  • Shadow Tamami (Tamami the Clown)
  • Shadow Tomoe (Sexy Woman)
  • Shadow Sumomo (Li'l Doll)
  • Shadow Nozomi (Prince Charming)
  • Shadow Ochimizu (Mechanical Puppeteer)

Persona Q: Shadow of the Labyrinth Edit

The Shadow Self of Rei, also known as Best Friend, appears as the guardian of the Inaba Pride Exhibit.

Persona 5 Edit

Shadow Selves exists for many people in Mementos, particularly for corrupt individuals. The vast majority of Shadow Selves merely take the form of a mythical figure, except slightly stronger. Shadow Selves are generally more honest about their selfish motives than their real selves, yet cruel in their honesty when admitting to their corrupt actions. The majority fight against the Phantom Thieves of Hearts when confronted; however, Yuuki Mishima's Shadow Self was able to cleanse himself simply by being talked to. Theoretically, if a Shadow Self is converted into a Persona, it is freed from the chains of Mementos.

Futaba Sakura's Shadow Self, Shadow Futaba, was noticeably more kind and desired to have her confront her misinterpreted past due to being partially consisted of positive thoughts, unlike most other Shadow Selves which are completely consisted of negative thoughts and corruption. In the end, by accepting the truth that the suicide note that ruined her life that others had manipulated her into believing in is a lie, Futaba was able to transform her Shadow Self into a Persona in a similar fashion to the Investigation Team in Persona 4.

Particularly strong, corrupted Shadow Selves have a dedicated Palace wherever their distorted thoughts are associated to their corruption. Unlike the more common Shadow Selves found in Mementos, Shadow Selves in Palaces have a stronger distortion of how they view themselves which affects not only how they appear, but also how their Palace and Shadow guards appear for them. In a sense, the Shadow Self is directly tied to their real world version. Due to this link, what happens to their Shadow Selves directly affects their real world selves, although the real selves are usually oblivious to any intrusion of their hearts encountered by their Shadow Selves, and a Shadow Self that has encountered Morgana will not make their real selves capable of hearing him talk.

When confronted by the Phantom Thieves, they will attempt to fight and kill them to continue to hide their wrong doings and to protect the Treasure they are defending. In defeat, they are goaded into admitting their guilt by the Phantom Thieves and within a few days or a few weeks after the Treasure is stolen, their real world self repents their former actions and usually turn themselves into the authorities to admit their crimes in guilt. The process is often described as a sharp and sudden personality change that is nearly impossible to investigate or understand by outsiders, making the Phantom Thieves of Hearts very difficult to capture and track down by regular law enforcement.

However, a Shadow Self can be killed instead, causing the real world version of themselves to experience what is described in-game as a mental shutdown. An assassinated Shadow Self causes the real world person to experience a heart attack-like affliction. The experience is noticeably painful for the individual as they gasp in intense pain while their eyes roll back and black liquid leaks from their eyes, nose, and mouth before finally collapsing on the spot, dead.

Palace rulers

MementosEdit

See the mission section for list of Shadow Selves that only appear in Mementos.

Devil Survivor 2Edit

Shadow Selves of every recruitable character in the Septentrione Arc except for the protagonist and the Anguished One will appear during the second phase of the battle against Polaris if the player chooses to restore the world to its previous state. All of them must be defeated before the battle will progress to the final phase.

The Shadow Selves fought here are derived from:

MusicEdit

Persona 2 duology and Persona 4 have dedicated musical themes played during the appearance of the shadow selves.

 
Shin Megami Tensei Persona 2 Innocent Sin OST Shadow

Shin Megami Tensei Persona 2 Innocent Sin OST Shadow

Persona 2: Innocent Sin (PSX, shared with Eternal Punishment)
 
Shin Megami Tensei Persona 4 ペルソナ4 OST - 16

Shin Megami Tensei Persona 4 ペルソナ4 OST - 16. Borderline Of Madness

Persona 4

GalleryEdit

Persona 2: Innocent Sin
 
Shadow Tatsuya
 
Shadow Maya IS PSP Portrait
Shadow Maya (disguised)
 
Shadow Maya Smile
Shadow Maya (exposed)
 
Shadow Eikichi
 
Shadow Lisa
 
Shadow Yukino
Persona 2: Eternal Punishment
 
P2 Japanese boxart
Boxart of the PS version featuring Maya Amano and her Shadow Self
 
Shadow Maya P2EP
 
Shadow Ulala P2EP
 
Shadow Katsuya P2EP
 
Shadow Baofu P2EP
 
Shadow Shiori Mask
Shadow Shiori
Persona 4
 
P4-shadow-yosuke
Shadow Yosuke portrait
 
P4-shadow-yosuke
Shadow Yosuke
 
Chie shadow
Shadow Chie portrait
 
Chie consept
Shadow Chie
 
P4-shadow-yukiko
Shadow Yukiko portrait
 
P4-shadow-yukiko
Shadow Yukiko
 
P4-shadow-kanji-1-
Shadow Kanji potrait
 
P4-shadow-kanji-1-
Shadow Kanji
 
P4ShadowRise
Shadow Rise portait
 
P4ShadowRise
Shadow Rise
 
P4-shadow-teddie
Shadow Teddie potrait
 
P4-shadow-teddie
Shadow Teddie
 
P4-shadow-naoto
Shadow Naoto portait
 
P4-shadow-naoto
Shadow Naoto
 
P4-OtherMitsuo
Shadow Mitsuo portrait
 
P4ShadowMitsuo
Shadow Mitsuo
 
Namatame shadow appears in the midnight channel
Shadow Nametame
 
ShadowYu
Shadow Yu in the anime
Persona 4 Arena/Ultimax
 
P4AU Shadow Version artbox
Alternative boxart of Persona 4 Arena Ultimax featuring all Shadow Selves of the playable characters
 
Shadow Aigis P4A Ultimax Artwork
Shadow Aigis
 
Shadow Mitsuru P4A Ultimax Artwork
Shadow Mitsuru
 
Shadow Akihiko P4A Ultimax Artwork
Shadow Akihiko
 
Shadow Yukari
Shadow Yukari
 
Shadow Junpei P4A Ultimax Artwork
Shadow Junpei
 
Shadow Ken and Koromaru P4AU Character Artwork
Shadow Ken and Shadow Koromaru
 
P4AU Shadow Yu
 
Shadow Yosuke P4A Ultimax Artwork
 
Shadow Chie P4A Ultimax Artwork
 
Shadow Yukiko P4A Ultimax Artwork
 
Shadow Kanji P4A Ultimax Artwork
 
Ulti Shadow Rise
 
Shadow Teddie P4A Ultimax Artwork
 
Shadow Naoto P4A Ultimax Artwork
 
Shadowlabrysp4a
 
Mr s bust1
Shadow Marie (Unused)
Persona 5
 
Suguru Shadow
 
Madarame Shadow
Shadow Madarame (Azazel)
 
Junya Shadow
Shadow Kaneshiro (Bael)
 
Okamura s
Shadow Kunikazu (Mammon)
 
Sae Shadow
Shadow Sae (Leviathan)
 
Shindou s
Shadow Shido (Samael)
 
P5 Shadow Futaba
 
P5 Yuki's Shadow
 
P5 Kanahiko Nakanohara
 
Shadow Morgana
Shadow Morgana in a nightmare.

TriviaEdit

  • In the Persona 2 duology, Shadow Selves' portraits have red glowing eyes. Originally in the first Japanese trailer of Persona 4, Shadow Yosuke also featured red eyes, but this was changed to golden eyes in the final version.
  • Apart from the red glowing eyes, all Shadow Selves portraits of Persona 2 features another red glow between the eyebrow and top eyelid.
  • In the arcade and story mode of Persona 4 Arena, various characters say that a Shadow Self and a Persona cannot coexist because they are one and the same. This contradicts the Persona 2 duology in which the cast fights their Shadow Selves with their own Personas, with Yukino Mayuzumi even having her self dragged into the abyss should her Shadow commit suicide. Hades also declares that Shadow Eikichi and Reverse Hades are only a part of Hades.
    • This contradiction was also shown in Persona 4: The Animation (Episode 26/True Ending) when Yu was fighting Margaret with a Persona representing his bond with Ryotaro Dojima (Kohryu) while his Shadow was present.
  • Shadow Selves also appear briefly outside of the Persona series in Devil Survivor 2. Shadow Selves of the Demon Tamers are summoned by Polaris in the final battle if the player has chosen Daichi's Restorer route. They will taunt the player about that choice and they must be defeated to proceed.
  • Shadow Marie is included on the disc, but no such Shadow appears in Persona 4 Arena Ultimax.
  • Unlike most characters who are confronted to them, Maya Amano, Mitsuo Kubo and Rei never admitted their shadow to be a part of them.
SakiChannel

Possibly Shadow Saki on the Midnight Channel.

  • In Persona 4, it is possible that Mayumi Yamano and Saki Konishi faced their own Shadow Selves before their deaths. However, this is not confirmed in any Persona 4 related media, although it is implied Saki faced her Shadow in Persona 4 The Animation.
  • In Persona 5, the Shadow Selves of the Phantom Thieves of Hearts, with the exception of Futaba Sakura and Morgana, never appear physically, and instead as disembodied voices calling for a contract. It is never explained how Morgana obtained his Persona, and Futaba gained hers in a similar fashion to the Investigation Team from Persona 4.
  • The situation with Rei in Persona Q: Shadow of the Labyrinth indicates that even if a person has been deceased, their Shadow Self will still remain, but not vice versa as seen below.
  • There can be slight inconsistencies regarding the state of a human after their Shadow Self dies. In the case of Yukino Mayuzumi in Persona 2: Innocent Sin, where her Shadow commits suicide, she ends up in a vegetative state while some characters in Persona 5 end up going berserk like in the case of Wakaba Isshiki who threw herself into traffic causing her death, have a heart attack and die like the SIU Director and Kunikazu Okumura, or staying catatonic like Principal Kobayakawa before being run over by a truck.
  • Persona Q2: New Cinema Labyrinth is the first combat-based Persona game after Persona 3 without any Shadow Selves or implied Shadow Selves at all, although cognitions with Shadow Self-like traits do appear in the game.


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