Rando (乱童, Randō translated as Child of Confusion), also known as Shorin (少林, Shōrin translated as Place of New Trees) Shaolin in the English manga, is the main antagonist during the Disciple Selection Trials in the first season of Yu Yu Hakusho. His name is Benjo in the Filipino Dub of the anime. He is voiced by Yō Inoue in the original Japanese and Eric Vale in the English dub.
When disguised as Shorin, his appearance is akin to be a small child with a fully shaved head, who wears a black cap, blue
Buddhist monk attire, and a simple necklace. Shorin has dark eyes and eyebrows coupled with an innocent, almost doll-like appearance. Apparently, the concept art for this form was a reference to the shaolin monks, famous for indoctrinating disciples at very young ages. It is assumed that Rando took the form of Shorin in order to remain inconspicuous when he wasn't hunting his human prey. This likely contributed to Shorin's relatively plain looks, and unassuming attire. However, in his true form, Rando's hair is a long, bright red, similar to Kurama's in his human form. His skin is chalk-white and he has an odd-looking scar on his chest that appears to spread across his torso. He also bears blue tribal markings on his face that resemble a spider.
Shorin initially seemed to be a somewhat innocent young man. As the tournament progresses, however, his extremely sadistic nature begins to emerge. This amalgamates into his true persona, Rando, a demon only concerned with power. He steals techniques from those who have mastered them, and kills the victims after he masters them himself. While fighting Yusuke, it's revealed that Rando is a sadist when he says that he tested each of the techniques that he stole from the psychics (fighters) on them, and did so because he wanted them to experience fear.
Spirit Detective Saga
He originally joined the Genkai Tournament under the disguise of Shorin. During the quarter finals he fights Chinpo and wins, although suffering some injuries. As he reached the finals, he was paired against Kuwabara. During the match, he used the Shrinking Curse technique to shrink Kuwabara down to the size of a doll where he sadistically taunts Kuwabara before breaking his arms, legs, and rib cage, much to Yusuke's fury and Genkai's disgust. After Kuwabara's defeat, Yusuke steps up as Shorin's final opponent and an intense battle ensues. Shorin unveils another technique during this battle that involves violently draining the blood out of Yusuke's wounds, once again revealing Shorin's sadistic nature. However, to everyone's surprise, Yusuke was able to endure Shorin's painful attacks without passing out and renders Shorin unconscious with a counterattack. Yusuke believes he had won the fight and walks over to Genkai to be gloat, only for her to inform him that a demon like Rando would not be defeated so easily. Rando then reveals his true form and battles Yusuke once more. Completely drained from his fight against Rando's human form, Yusuke's attacks do not harm Rando at all and only results in Rando taunting Yusuke about how it will give him time to decide what technique with which to torture his opponent. He then uses the Life-Force Thread technique subdue Yusuke and swings him wildly around the forest before hanging Yusuke above a lake. Rando decides to show off another technique which involves summoning and controlling creatures known as Hate Fish from the depths of the spirit world, which he summons into the lake below where Yusuke is hanging. He summons another, smaller demon and then tosses it into the lake to be devoured with the purpose of taunting Yusuke about his impending, gruesome fate. Rando concludes by using his recently-learned Spirit Gun technique (modified to use a portion of his demon energy rather than his entire supply of spirit energy) to blast the branch holding Yusuke above the water and descending Yusuke into the lake to be devoured. Kuwabara, barely conscious, is able to use his last bit of spirit energy to help taunt out Yusuke's latent spirit energy, which Yusuke then fills the entire lake with to destroy the fish and escape his restraints. While initially surprised, Rando's resolve remains unfazed and he attempts to use his Spirit Gun to kill Yusuke the moment he sees him emerge from the swamp. Yusuke, anticipating this, emerges behind Rando instead as they both fire their Spirit Guns at each other. Rando's overconfidence causes Yusuke's full-power attack to overpower Rando's, knocking him into the lake that Yusuke emerged from. (In the manga however, instead of using his Spirit Gun against Rando, Yusuke simply smashes him to the ground with a powerful punch after emerging behind him from the lake).
Rando, severely angered by the attack, uses his spirit energy to vaporize the entire lake and savagely beats Yusuke who is once again weakened from using all of his spirit energy. Injured by Yusuke's attack and low on spirit energy, Rando attempts to shrink Yusuke by using the same chant he used against Kuwabara, but the technique backfires and results in Rando shrinking himself instead. Amused by Rando's lack of understanding of his own stolen techniques, Genkai explains that any spoken chant has to be heard by the victim or it will result in the user being afflicted instead. Yusuke then pulls algae out of his ear, revealing that he had unintentionally made himself deaf. Rando furiously declares that he can simply reverse the chant, but Yusuke renders him unconscious by dropping his elbow down on the shrunken Rando and rendering him unconscious. Rando is then arrested by Botan, who takes him to Spirit World.
Three Kings Saga
In chapter 170 of the manga, it is revealed by Kurama that the D-Class demons were brainwashed to commit crimes and that upon recapture, they were killed. Rando may have been one of the criminals.
Powers and Abilities
Versatile Sadist: As a user of 99 techniques (100, if the Spirit Gun is counted), he is far above any normal human martial artist master with heightened spiritual awareness, as he had been implied to have easily beaten people of that category with those techniques. Due to the large number of techniques at his disposal, Rando is a very unpredictable fighter, rarely using the same technique more than once, and allowing his foes to be confused and unable to expect which technique he would use next. A weakness in this, however, is that he is overly reliant on his unsurprisingly, un-mastered techniques and doesn't take into account what will happen if they don't succeed; he also relies too much on the techniques' power to win fights rather than combining them with hand-to-hand combat as later antagonist after him do, resulting in his humiliating defeat. Genkai claims that he never bothered to fully study and learn the exact mechanics of the techniques he stole, which was also what lead to his downfall. Another weakness is that his sadism also keeps him from killing foes right away as he indulges upon the pain he inflicts. Without these powerful techniques, he would likely be a D Class demon with strength considered superhuman to normal humans, but quite weak in comparison to most demons. Overall, he is most likely a Lower C Class Demon.
- Circles of Inferno (火掌発破拳, Kashō Happa-Ken, translated as Destructive Fire-Emitting Palm-Fist, Fiery Palms in the Viz Manga): An attack he uses as Shorin. He focuses energy into his hands and creates fireballs, which he throws at his opponent. Stolen from a famous martial artist (Psychic in the English dub) according to Genkai. However, it isn't very effective against Kuwabara, who uses his spirit sword like a bat to reflect the attack back at Shorin.Yu Yu Hakusho, episode 13, and Manga Vol 4, Chapter 29.
- Sickle and Tornado (斬空烈風陣, Zankū Reppu-jin, translated as Violent Beheading Wind Air Formation, Slicing Gale Aegis in the Viz Manga): Another attack he uses as Shorin. He creates bladed discs of pure vacuum in his hands that he hurls at his opponents. This technique is reminiscent of a kamaitachi, or a razor wind. This technique is much more devastating if one is hit while trying to avoid it, thus by charging directly at him one can sustain the least damage. Presumably a stolen technique.Yu Yu Hakusho, episode 13, and Manga Vol. 4, Chapter 30.
- Shrinking Curse (縮身の呪術, Shukushin no Jujutsu, translated as Curse Technique of Reducing Body): After a chant, the target's body will decrease in size. However, as any chant technique must be performed perfectly, the effect can be negated if the opponent doesn't hear the chant or if the user doesn't say it properly. If that happens, it will backfire and affect the caster. Genkai reveals that although quite formidable, the technique is surprisingly quite easy to avoid, as all the opponent has to do is cover his ears. Another weakness is that Shorin is open to attack while casting it, and has to rely on his opponent being unable to attack or being too stupid to realize the deadliness of this technique. Stolen from a famous martial artist (Psychic in the English dub) according to Genkai.Yu Yu Hakusho, episode 13.
- Life-Force Thread (妖気の糸, Yōki no Itō, translated as Thread of Demons, Aura Thread in the Viz Manga): Numerous strands of thread are created from Rando's mouth, which then ensnare the target. They combine to create a whip that directly feeds off Rando's energy.Yu Yu Hakusho, episode 14, and Manga Vol. 4 Chapter 30
- Demon Fish (魔界魚, Makai Gyo, translated as Demon World Fish): After chanting, he can summon fish from the demon world, which he affectionately calls "hate fish" These fish seem to be a mixture of alligator, shark and piranha species.Yu Yu Hakusho, episode 14.
- Spirit Gun (霊丸, Reigan): After observing Yusuke, Rando developed a variation of the Spirit Gun in which he discharges a condensed blast of Demon Energy from his outstretched index finger, although, unlike Yusuke, he doesn't use all of his energy in order to fire a blast. Stolen from Yusuke.Yu Yu Hakusho, episode 14.
- Trainer Demon Summoning: Rando also displays the ability to summon a "trainer demon", an almost rat like demon creature which he can control. It starts out as not much larger than Rando's own hand, but quickly becomes human sized when he releases it. He uses this to exhibit the veracious appetite of his hate fish. It is heavily implied to be an E Class demon. Yu Yu Hakusho, episode 14.
- Rando is the first demon in the series not to be motivated by conquest or primitive instinct, but the sadistic pleasure of pain from his victims; something that becomes a trait for a majority of the future antagonists, regardless of their goals.
- In the anime, Rando is one of only two antagonists in the series that is defeated, but not killed or implied to be killed (excluding characters who reformed such Hiei, Touya, Jin, Shishiwakamaru, Suzuki, Yomi, etc.). The other is Elder Toguro
- Rando is the first user of the demon energy consuming variation of the Spirit Gun, which is commonly referred to by fans as "Demon Gun." Yusuke would be the second near the finale of the series, using a deadlier variant of the technique, which fused Spirit and Demon energy (in the anime only).
- Rando seems to be a Spider Demon as he has a spider-shaped mark on his face and makes the victims small enough to be less of a threat which is similar to how spiders trap their prey in a web before eating them and is able to produce thread that is similar to a Spider web.
- Rando is the last main antagonist and opponent of Yusuke Urameshi to lose to the latter's luck, rather than the all-out hand-to-hand combat of the later enemies.
- Rando bears several resemblances to the Inuyasha Villain, Naraku. Both have heavily implied Spider themes, both take the techniques of others (In Naraku's case, absorbing a demon and gaining their unique abilities), etc...
- In the video games, it is revealed that Tarukane cloned Rando (along with Suzaku) to serve as his last line of defense after Toguro is "killed".
- His dub name (Shorin) is the Japanese pronunciation of Shaolin, which is the name given in the English manga.
- Rando's Hate Fish and Shrinking Curse is the basis for the Indoor Fish and Fun Fun Cloth techniques in the Hunter x Hunter manga (done by the same mangaka) in addition the user of that that technique, Chrollo Lucifer, also stole the technique and has the same stealing stealing powers as Rando. However it is worth noting that the way they steal is the opposite, Rando steals his techniques by killing his targets, while Chrollo needs to have his victims alive in order to continue to use his techniques.
- Orochimaru from Naruto is similar to Rando in many ways
- Both disguised as participants to seek out their interests
- They amassed a huge number of techniques physical and supernatural
- Introduced in exam esque tournament that involved survival in the forest
- Caused more harm to the cast when they first fought