Dr. Ichigaki (Dr.イチガキ, Dr. Ichigaki) was a mad scientist and the manager of Team Ichigaki during the Dark Tournament Saga. He is voiced by Ryūji Saikachi in the Japanese version and James Fields in the English dub.
He is a short and stumpy demon. Dr. Ichigaki is more than a foot shorter than each of the members of his team. He has long, pewter hair on the sides of his head, but is totally bald on top. He has extremely long-pointy ears, narrow eyes and an upturned nose; a sloping wrinkled forehead, pronounced cheekbones high up on his face with an extremely large cleft chin. He is dressed like a typical scientist- complete with a white lab coat and complimentary attire. He usually stands with his arms crossed behind his back.
Ichigaki is a malicious and deceitful demon scientist who is focused solely upon furthering his research. He places little to no value on the lives of others, even viewing his own test subjects as expendable. He entered the tournament to test his latest invention - the "Beruki". Ichigaki is willing to go to any length to prove his research. By using the Beruki, he is able to gain control of the three helpless, yet talented fighters and turn them into merciless killers.
The Doctor is completely amoral and views agency and compassion as nothing more than obstacles to unleashing peoples true power. In turn, the Beruki chemically implants a single command into its host - an unstoppable urge to kill. He's totally unconcerned with intangible concepts like spirit or will power, and views life in terms of cold logic. He even uses a calculator to predict the statistical percentage of victory for his team. He is also viciously sadistic and gains tremendous satisfaction from torturing others both physically and mentally.
Even though he views humans as pawns that can be discarded, he is notable in being one of the few demons to acknowledge the potential of humans and their spirit energy. He does fail to acknowledge the potential of human emotions however.
Sometime before the dark tournament (the exact timeframe is never revealed in the anime), Dr. Ichigaki approaches the students of the renowned master Metamura, crying as they attempt to bear the sight of their dying master. Claiming to have the ability to cure their master's disease, Ichigaki vows to heal the master in return for the bodies of three students: En, Ryo, and Kai, whom Ichigaki views as the strongest of Mitamura's students. Seeing no other solution, the master's pupils agree to the malevolent scientist's proposal, not aware that he caused Metamura's illness himself. With the three fighters' bodies available for his use, Dr. Ichigaki enters the Dark Martial Arts Competition, where he meets Yusuke and team Urameshi.
Dark Tournament Saga
Dr. Ichigaki's team faces Team Urameshi in the Second Round of the Dark Tournament. Taking advantage of the absence of Hiei and Kurama, Ichigaki convinces Team Urameshi to play out the round in a 3 vs. 3 battle royal format, in which his percentage of victory is calculated at 99.95%. Pushing the stakes even further, the scientist also persuades Yusuke to agree to give up his body to Ichigaki in the event of a Team Urameshi loss (the Masked Fighter and Kuwabara as well in the English manga and Japanese version).
As the round begins, Team Ichigaki gains a quick upper hand, with Yusuke, Kuwabara, and the masked fighter completely on the defensive. It seems as though Team Ichigaki has lucked out, with Yusuke fighting without his spirit gun and Kuwabara refusing to fight, knowing the true nature of his opponents. After taking a heavy beating from
the techniques of En, Ryo, and Kai, Kuwabara is seemingly able to reach into the boys' inner-selves, temporarily causing them to nearly come to their senses. Yusuke, enraged by the grievous injuries suffered by Kuwabara, acquires a sudden burst of spirit energy, allowing him to easily avoid Team Ichigaki's attacks and deliver powerful blows of his own. It is the Masked Fighter, however, who finishes the match, using the spirit wave to defeat the three fighters, while freeing them of Ichigaki's invention.
As the teams fought each other, the absent Hiei and Kurama confronted Ichigaki's goons (including a semi-organic killer robot) outside the stadium, rescued Metamura - who was kept prisoner in a nearby cave - and cured his illness, thus allowing him to publicly expose Ichigaki's amoral machination. Seeing himself cornered, the scientist pulls out one last experiment up his sleeve: he injects himself with a special fluid, quadrupling in size to become a giant, green, muscular beast. Yusuke, however, remains unintimidated, as he delivers a series of blows culminating in a fatal sky uppercut to Ichigaki's chin, sending him halfway across the stadium. In the anime he is not seen at all after his defeat (implying that he was killed by this), however in the manga he is seen watching Yusuke's final fight with Toguro, showing the damage from his defeat (missing teeth, stitches, etc.).
- Power Serum: while it is heavily implied that Dr. Ichigaki has no real combat skills by himself, by injecting a special serum into his body, he can transform into a huge dark-green demon with a hand like set of horns on his forehead. In the manga, it is merely for show as Yusuke easily delivers blows strong enough to send him flying immediately after the transformation. In the anime, his arms are able to stretch like his robot, although not to the extent of being able to hone in on the opponent.
- Dr. Ichigaki's name literally translates to "Number One Ghoul", which fits with his ghoulish appearance and twisted personality.
- In the manga, Yusuke was able to instantly defeat Dr. Ichigaki. In the anime, the fight was extended to where Yusuke initially had some trouble, before he was able to successfully defeat him.