Even though my granddaughter is a mere half-demon, I would never allow the humans to have her!
Taigokumaru was once in charge of maintaining the barrier around the yōkai bat cave until he was too old to continue. His son, Tsukuyomaru, fell in love with a human woman Shizu which angered Taigokumaru greatly. Taigokumaru was seen arguing with his son, but seemed to have given a temporary consent, as the local village had gained temporary peace. But in the end Taigokumaru, disgusted with Tsukuyomaru's love for a human, chose to kill his own son. He decided to use his hanyō grandchild, Shiori, since he needed an heir to continue maintaining the bat barrier. Taigokumaru made a deal to protect their village if Shizu gave Shiori to him. Eventually, the village gave Shiori to Taigokumaru, but he later broke his promise and attacked the village himself.
During the story
Inuyasha and his friends came upon the village as they faced the problem of Naraku’s barrier. They learned from Myōga that the Tessaiga would be able to shatter barriers if he killed the current guardian of the barrier from the yōkai bat clan. Inuyasha offered to rescue Shiori from Taigokumaru. He had Shizu lead him to the yōkai bat cave where Shiori was being held. The two of them were confronted by Taigokumaru as soon as they saw Shiori by the cave's entrance. Shizu immediately accused Taigokumaru of lying to her. He responded by saying that he would never honor a promise to humans. Shizu then demanded that he return Shiori to her. He refused since she was doing an excellent job as guardian of the cave, despite being a hanyō.
Inuyasha attempted to destroy Taigokumaru with the Kaze no Kizu, but the barrier around the cave blocked his attack. Taigokumaru asked who Inuyasha was after his attack, but he responded by saying that it didn't matter who he was. Taigokumaru believed that Inuyasha was sent by the vllage in order to retrieve Shiori. He retaliated by firing a sonic blast at both of them, but they were able to dodge his attack. Shori tearfully pleaded with Taigokumaru to spare her mother's life, and promised that she would carry out her role as guardian of the cave if he did. Taigokumaru claimed that Shiori had more common sense than Shizu or Inuyasha, and stated that Shiori would not be happy back in the village since she was constantly being bullied there for being a hanyō.
Shiori continued to miss her mother and wished to be with her. Taigokumaru decided to destroy her village in order to remove all distractions from Shiori being able to perform her duty.
The village was under attack by the bat yōkai. Taigokumaru brought Shiori with him in order to be protected by her barrier. As Shiori watched in horror as the village was under attack, Taigokumaru told her that the villagers did not deserve her sympathy after the way she was treated so badly by them. He promised to spare her mother if she maintained the barrier around him. The bat yōkai were suddenly confronted by Inuyasha and his friends. They were able to slay many of them, but they were unable to defeat Taigokumaru because of Shiori's barrier. Inuyasha asked Shiori what she wanted to do. Inuyasha warned her that going back to the village might be a bad idea for her since they were content with killing her, but agreed to help if that was what she wanted. Taigokumaru intervened in the conversation and attacked with a sonic blast. He remarked that Inuyasha was also a hanyō, and the reason he was sympathetic for Shiori was due to his own past experience. Inuyasha once again asked Shiori if she wanted to return to the villager. Taigokumaru warned her that her mother would die if she left. Shiori was unsure about what to do.
Taigokumaru unleashed another sonic blast after accusing Inuyasha of confusing Shiori. Inuyasha tried to counterattack, but was blocked by Shiori's barrier. Taigokumaru commended Shiori for protecting him with her barrier. He proceeded to unleash a barrage of sonic blasts at the village, which left it nearly devastated. Shizu pleaded with Taigokumaru to spare the village since it was his son, Tsukuyomaru, who first wanted peace. Taigokumaru claimed that his son was a fool for wanting to live peacefully with humans. He later revealed that he murdered his own son and took great pleasure in doing it. Inuyasha was prepared to kill Taigokumaru after learning the truth about Shiori's father's death. Taigokumaru warned in a mocking tone that killing him would also mean killing Shiori since she could not adjust the size of the barrier. Taigokumaru then unleashed another sonic blast. Inuyasha used the Bakuryūha with the hope that it could pass through the opening in Shiori's barrier where Taigokumaru launched his initial attack, but the barrier was fully restored just before the attack could connect. Taigokumaru once again commended his granddaughter for protecting him. Shiori suddenly told Taigokumaru to get out. She thrusted him out of the protective barrier after learning that he killed her father. Taigokumaru was furious at Shiori for throwing him out of the barrier, but was surprised by how much power she had since even he couldn't control the barrier as well as Shiori. She began to fall after the barrier around her was lifted. As her mother tried to catch her, Taigokumaru attempted to intervene with his sonic blast, but was destroyed by Inuyasha after he once again used the Bakuryūha.
After being reunited with her mother, Shiori offered to let Inuyasha destroy the Blood Coral Crystal with Tessaiga so it could absorb its power. She explained that it was an heirloom of the bat yōkai clan that gave each guardian the power to create a barrier, and it also stored the power of the previous generations of guardians (including her grandfather and father). Just as Inuyasha was prepared to destroy it, the crystal suddenly emanated a demonic aura that affected Shiori. Shizu took the crystal away from her, but its evil aura forced her to drop it. The spirit of Taigokumaru emerged from the crystal with the intention of killing Shiori and her mother. Inuyasha tried to fend him off with Tessaiga, but Taigokumaru was able to resist his attack. As Taigokumaru approached Shiori and Shizu, a barrier suddenly surrounded them that was placed by the spirit of Tsukuyomaru. It caught Taigokumaru off guard long enough for Inuyasha to destroy him once and for all. The crystal broke in half and all of its powers was absorbed into Tessaiga as the Red Tessaiga.
Taigokumaru is a cruel and ruthless daiyōkai who cares very little for others, even his own son Tsukuyomaru. He admits to slaying him when his son threatens to leave the bat yōkai tribe and abandon his post as guardian of the barrier. Like most yōkai in general, Taigokumaru feels a great sense of superiority when it comes to humans. Taigokumaru forces Shizu to give Shiori to him and he promised that he and his tribe would no longer attack the village if she did so; he later goes back on his promise and ruthlessly attacks the village, calling Shizu foolish for believing that he would keep a promise to a mere human. Taigokumaru also appears to be rather intelligent as well; when he notices that Inuyasha is a hanyō like Shiori, he quickly deduces that Inuyasha feels sympathy for her and is recalling his own situation. It is unknown if he actually cares for Shiori, as he mentions that he actually values her as compared to the villagers that ostracized Shiori and doesn't hesitate to sacrifice her, though this is likely a façade as he sees Shiori as the only being capable of maintaining the bat barrier.
Powers & Abilities
- Expert Strategist: Taigokumaru is very cunning and crafty as he was able to easily take advantage of the humans' desperation that allowed him to take Shiori as the new guardian of the barrier while breaking his promise to leave the village alone in order to freely hunt them down while being protected by the barrier. He also takes advantage of Shiori's love for her mother so that she will continue to maintain the barrier when he engages against Inuyasha and his group. Though his cruel negligence of his own son where he freely admits it to Shizu and Inuyasha is his undoing as Shiori finally gains the resolve to reject him, which leaves him vulnerable to Inuyasha's Bakuryūha.
- Immense Demonic Power: As the leader of the bat yōkai clan, Taigokumaru is a very powerful daiyōkai. This is shown when he is able to easily kill his own son, Tsukuyomaru, another bat daiyōkai and the former guardian of the barrier, though it is implied that his old age diminished his overall power as Inuyasha is able to easily kill him with the Bakuryūha after Shiori rejects him from her barrier.
- Flight: Taigokumaru and his offspring are yōkai bats, and as such, they can fly.
- Immense Strength: Due to his size, it is safe to presume that Taigokumaru has strength that far surpasses the strength of a human and many yōkai.
- Demonic Sonic Blasts: Taigokumaru can fire sonic blasts from his mouth, and wings. He is able to fire one or more sonic blasts that are strong enough to create large craters in the ground or even destroy an entire village.
- Blood Coral Crystal (
血玉珊瑚, "Chidama-sango") (Formerly): As the duty of the guardian of the yōkai bat barrier is passed on through heredity, it is likely that Taigokumaru was the previous guardian and thus wielded this crystal to maintain it before passing it on to his son.
- Impenetrable Barrier: It is said that the barriers created by the yōkai bat tribe are considered to be impenetrable though the barrier can only held up by one member of the tribe at a time which wanes with age and when passed to the next then the ability is lost altogether. Should the need arise, the crystal can project a small personal barrier around itself if it is threatened.
- Demonic Aura: If the crystal is threatened it can emit large amounts of demonic power that mesmerizes a hanyō or weak yōkai holding it and burns a human if they attempt to grab hold of it.
- Soul Collection: It is also said that this crystal houses the spirits of the previous generations of the bat barrier guardians of the tribe and thus can release the spirit of a previous guardian if its existence is threatened such as Taigokumaru's soul reappearing after Shiori suggests that Inuyasha destroy the crystal. However, there are chances when a previous guardian spirit can escape it on its own, such as when Tsukuyomaru does in order to protect his wife and daughter.
- "Indeed. Don't tell me that you honestly believed that. As if I would keep a promise to a human."
- "Let me ask you this. Do you think Shiori will be happy back in the human village? I don't. The villagers ostracized her because she was half demon. They didn't hesitate for a second to sacrifice her life for their own. How can I give my precious granddaughter back to such selfish humans?"
- Taigokumaru: "You want me to honor his wishes? Hahaha, how ludicrous. Tsukuyomaru was indeed my son, but he was a fool! Falling in love with a mortal only hastened his demise."
- Shizu: "Huh? What do you mean by that?"
- Taigokumaru: "Just as you stated, he said he would protect this village. He said that unless we abide by his wishes he would abandon his duty as guardian of the barrier and would leave the tribe. Even his heart had been stolen by the mortal. That's why..."
- Shizu: "Why what?"
- Inuyasha: "That's why, what?! Don't tell me, you... you didn't kill your own flesh and blood?"
- Taigokumaru: "I did. I took great pleasure in hastening his trip to the netherworld. I had Shiori, so the boy was of no use to me."
- ―Taigokumaru revealing that he was the one who killed his son[src]
- Even though she was a hanyō, Taigokumaru was genuinely impressed with Shiori's barrier; when she expels everyone out of it, he is downright amazed.
- He also feels that even as a hanyō, Shiori is above the villagers and that she has more of a place among the yōkai bats than she does with them. Whether this is out of genuine feelings for her or for the sake of his own pride is unclear.
- His seiyū, Ryūji Saikachi, also voiced several characters from Rumiko Takahashi's previous work. They include Grandfather Otonashi from Maison Ikkoku, and The Frog Hermit from Ranma ½.