THE SILVER CASE: What Is Uehara Kamui?

Format Kamui, the third Kamui

The “third Kamui,” partially overlapping with the first Kamui, is the focus of “KamuiDrome” and receives further description in “LifeCut.” At a higher tier of occult “facts,” this Kamui is the result of media manipulation by the TRO/CCO and FSO. This robot-like killer is also the template for the Kamui Maspro. He is a largely or entirely fictional teenage FSO hitman who uses a harpoon gun to assassinate powerful figures during the 1970s until the Silver Case in December 1979, when he assassinates the TRO/CCO chairman Nakane Ginji and is arrested by Kusabi. The lower-order “truth” identifies Kamui as a “serial killer,” a term indicating sadistic psychological gratification or compulsion like in the case of the Kobe child murders. Ryo, Shimohira, and Minato act out this less true version of Kamui. However, Format Kamui, like the fourth and fifth Kamuis, is a political agent. Not murdering people at random, he assassinates specific people in terroristic acts.

Screenshot from "KamuiDrome." The portrait of Kamui is on the left, a bald, silver-eyed male figure dressed in black. Two lines of black makeup seem to connect his eyes and ears. Text reads, "UEHARA, Kamui. Estimated criminal record: <12:1975 Age 16> Assassinated Makoto Ishihara, Mitama City Mayor. Around the same time, Shin Yanagi, president of Sumikawa Corp., the recycling business" Here the text is cut off in the screenshot.

Kamui Net appears in “KamuiDrome” as part of the Black Angel Network of BBSs. The Kamui Net version of Format Kamui shows a picture of a bald, death-filed individual much like in Nakategawa’s photograph of Fujiwara, with the shocking silver eyes significant in “LifeCut” and the remainder of the series. This is the lower order of “facts” regarding Format Kamui.

Here, for the first time, the player receives an explanation of Uehara Kamui’s specific crimes in the ’70s. Beginning at age 16, Kamui killed at least ten people, concluding with the Silver Case itself, when he assassinated TRO/CCO chairman Nakane Ginji outside the TTV Station. Like Fujiwara is alleged to, this Kamui uses a harpoon gun. The portrait probably shows Fujiwara, though as described above, this man could not have been active in the 1970s. Format Kamui’s victims—corporate and government officials, a leader of the “Church of Psyentology,” a group of teenage boys who gang raped a girl—are all implicated in corruption or unjust violence but cannot be punished under the existing governmental system. However, further complicating the reliability of the information is that the site lists various other Ueharas in addition to Kamui, apparently other alleged terrorists jumbled together with Format Kamui.

Kinjo, the likely proprietor of Kamui Net (which operates out of his own headquarters), presents himself as a radical counterculture figure. His “clown” face paint (as Kusabi and the “imaginary girl” call it) and costume also associate him with Furuya, Nakama, and the “imaginary girl,” radical youth characters and self-proclaimed Kamui/Ayame-style revolutionaries. However, as Kinjo’s involvement implies, this counterculture is a sham the syndicates allow.

Kamui Net, then, ultimately serves the interests of power, of Uminosuke and Nezu, peddling an official “truth” for a different audience than the news media depicted so far. Their Format Kamui recuperates the discontent among the youth into unproductive destruction that does not threaten the status quo. The story of “KamuiDrome” focuses particularly on Furuya and Nakama, a fake Kamui and Ayame pair whom I will return to below.