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Major Motoko Kusanagi (草薙 素子, Kusanagi Motoko) is the main protagonist in Masamune Shirow's anime and manga series. Motoko is a commanding presence when on assignment, but also trades insults with her troops. She constantly calls Aramaki, and when the Puppetmaster reveals the "Motokos" that exist in the minds of those who know her, Aramaki's "Motoko" is sticking her tongue out. She also smiles frequently and gives the "V" for victory to her boyfriend. She does, however, discuss seriously whether she is a "real" person with her girlfriend. However, she assumes a "horror movie"-style pose, and they both laugh at the end.

In the sequel, a person known as Motoko Aramaki appears. She identifies herself as containing "Motoko Kusanagi" elements, along with Project 2501, the Puppetmaster. She is also identified as "Motoko 11". It is possible she is one of the "children" Motoko talked of creating along with her opponents.


All background info about Kusanagi is unknown, but assuming from her nick-name, she may have been in military service before. She is an expert on unlawful activity, secret intelligence, and demolition. The "Major" was scouted from the special maneuver team of the Ministry of Home Affairs. She commands Batou and Togusa, which makes her the number two person in Section 9.  Kusanagi had her body changed to that of a cybernetic one;  Motoko's body is almost completely cyberized and only a part of her brain is from her original body.  She has an early 20's cyborg body, but actual age is estimated at being in her late 30's.  Her sub-brain can access any kind of computer network on the Earth.

Motoko Manga Panel Insert .png

Section 9’s Tactical Commander and second in command, Major Kusanagi suffered from a medical condition which necessitated that her brain be transplanted to a cybernetic body at a very young age.  Although her proficiency with the artificial body is highly advanced, she is still haunted by the childhood memories of her own inability to master the more subtle intricacies of its operation – emotions she hides beneath her stoic demeanor. The name Kusanagi has a mythological reference: in fact it is spelled with the same characters as the name of the sacred sword of the Emperors of Japan, the KUSANAGI (also called AME NO MUREKUMO).

Her Class A cyberbody is made to resemble a mass-production model.  In reality, her electrical and mechanical system is made of ultra-sophisticated materials unobtainable on the civilian market.  If she appeared to expensive, she might be suddenly waylaid on a dark street some night, hacked up, and hauled off to be sold.  The body is feminine but some rumors passed that she, originally, was not.  This is incorrect.  Motoko is bisexual but has always, and will always be, a woman.  With a height of 168 cm, she is slim and small, but her energy is boundless.

Personality Traits[]


In the Manga Motoko has a much more slapstick, vivacious, and sexy personality. She participates in a lesbian sex splash panel and has a boyfriend. The in-universe explanation for the lesbian sex panel seems to be that cyborgs of the same gender are especially compatible. This splash panel is apparently a "side business" for Motoko, as stated by Masamune in the back of the manga collection.

Apparently, "e-sex" (as depicted in the splash panel) is a lucrative but illegal act. This is because it ties together the users' nervous systems to allow shared simultaneous sensations; such intimate connections have the potential for serious complications, as illustrated by the accidental arrival of Batou.

Motoko's body is one of the most advanced models on the market, possessing 16²/cm² skin tactile elements, meaning she has a greatly heightened sense of touch. These nerves render her e-sex acts especially pleasurable; therefore, she makes a good profit from these activities.

Heterosexual e-sex is especially illegal because such acts entail immense pain, caused by the fact that nerves stimulated by one user are stimulated simultaneously and blindly in another user. Homosexual e-sex is safe because the participants have the same body parts being stimulated (in Motoko's three-way panel, the fondling of a breast). When Batou accidentally crashes Motoko's panel while trying to contact her, he experiences intense pain since he is receiving stimulation for organs and bodily parts which he does not possess.

Another fact about her sexuality is that she has a boyfriend during a latter story in the manga. He works for Section One, and they have been dating for seven months. Batou considers this "a new record."

Abilities []


Batou []

Daisuke Aramaki []

Togusa []


This article contains information from some of the following sources:

  • Ghost in the Shell (manga)
  • Ghost in the Shell 1.5: Human Error Processor (manga)
  • Ghost in the Shell 2: Man/Machine Interface (manga)