"But the big difference is who I work for. I'd rather die than be a yes-man to someone I don't even like."
Shalnark had blond hair, bright green eyes, and wore a lavender outfit. In the 1999 anime adaptation, Shalnark had brown hair, and his outfit was dark red. His spider tattoo was never revealed.
Shalnark was highly intelligent and thought quickly on his feet. He was fond of electronics and considered those he controlled with his phone to be puppets. He expressed a dislike for his "autopilot mode" because he couldn’t remember or feel any satisfaction for his actions.
While Shalnark got along with everyone in the group, he was the closest with Uvogin. After Chrollo was captured, Shalnark sided with Feitan and Phinks in wanting to go after Pakunoda in order to kill the chain user, even at the risk of Chrollo's life. He was also willing to listen to Franklin’s logic and admit that he was right. After Pakunoda's death, he and the other members could be seen in mourning.
He did not seem to put too much value on his own life, as shown by his nonchalant reaction when Shizuku's fortune foretold that he might be one of the Troupe's dead members. Despite looking like the most innocent and cheerful member, it was possible that Shalnark was one of the more cold-hearted and less empathetic of the group, seeing his controlled victims as nothing more than puppets who became broken when they were killed. The above traits may explain why he seemed to be in harmony with the other brutal members of the group, such as Feitan and Phinks, despite their marked difference in personalities.
Nonetheless, Shalnark proved to be a very loyal member of the Troupe, having used everything in his power to help the group's missions and agenda. He seemed to value Shizuku and Pakunoda's lives over his own, as he saw their abilities as rare assets that the Troupe couldn’t afford to lose while considering his own and Nobunaga’s to be easily replaceable.
He was polite and level-headed, having often attempted to be a voice of reason to settle down the other members during tense situations.
Although Shalnark is not a founding member of the Troupe, Pakunoda shot him and Phinks with her Memory Bomb ability because she needed to fire six shots at once, the same number of founding members (including herself and Uvogin). However, it is clear that like the founding members, Shalnark hails from Meteor City, a junkyard city inhabited by outcasts that refuse to be part of society, since he said it had been while and that the place hadn't changed at all. People who live there do not exist in any official records, and the existence of the city itself is known to very few people. He presumably took part in the massacre of the Kurta Clan. At one point in his life, he took the Hunter Exam and became a licensed Hunter.
Yorknew City arc
Shalnark first appears when the Phantom Troupe gathers at an undisclosed location in Yorknew City on August 31st, where Chrollo reveals his plans to steal all the items at the Underground Auction. Franklin, Feitan, and Shizuku slaughter the Mafia members present, but they all discover that the auction items have already been moved. They escape by hot-air balloon, which Shalnark operates. Following Chrollo's orders to draw out the Shadow Beasts, he lands on a rocky cliff in the Gordeau Desert after the balloon is shot down, where he excitedly looks at the angry Mafia members waiting for them below. Uvogin tells the others that he will fight on his own. As he begins to massacre the Mafia members, Shalnark pulls out a deck of cards to play with Machi and Shizuku.
He looks in delighted awe at Uvogin's Big Bang Impact, and then praises Porcupine and Rabid Dog's Nen proficiency for managing to break his skin. He asks Uvogin if he wants help, but Uvogin tells him to stay out of it. When Rabid Dog's poison paralyzes Uvogin, Machi notes the fight would have been over if it had been a lethal poison, causing Shalnark to speculate that Rabid Dog enjoys torture. Like the other members, he covers his ears in time to avoid being deafened by Uvogin's shout. After Uvogin’s victory, Shalnark tells him about the leeches inside of him and that he should drink a lot of beer so he can urinate often. Moments later, a chain appears around Uvogin and he is captured by Kurapika. Through Machi's thread, the Spiders chase after the Nostrade bodyguards, with Shalnark driving a stolen car. He jumps out of it just in time to avoid being captured by Owl's Fun Fun Cloth.
The Spiders then kill the remaining members of the Shadow Beasts (with the exception of Owl).They subsequently disguise themselves as Mafia members, gaining access to Uvogin and freeing him. The Nostrade bodyguards hear Uvogin’s yell and safely escape. When Uvogin insists on giving chase, Shalnark accompanies him. Logging into the Hunter Website with his license, he provides Uvogin with information on the buildings owned by the Nostrade Family and the hotels their guards are staying in. He tells Uvogin to get his own license and praises him as an exemplary bandit when the latter replies that he steals everything he needs. When Uvogin gives him a kiss of gratitude, he protests and asks to be paid back instead. He assures Uvogin that he will take care of the bodies left behind and asks him to be careful. Later that night, as Feitan continues his torture of Owl, Shalnark asks him if Uvogin has returned. Feitan replies that he hasn’t, assuring Shalnark that Uvogin wouldn’t die so easily, but Shalnark begins to feel concerned. When Chrollo theorizes that the chain user is either a Conjurer or Manipulator, and states that Uvogin is at a disadvantage against those types, Shalnark deeply regrets not going with him.
When Gon and Killua are captured and brought back to the Troupe's hideout, Shalnark is seen scowling at them. After Pakunoda assures the others that the boys aren’t connected to the chain user, Shalnark agrees with her and states that they can let them go, adding that the chain user wouldn’t need two kids to gather information for him since he has the Mafia network at his disposal. He prints a list of Nostrade Family employees from the Hunter Website and hands the photos to the other Spiders, telling them to memorize their faces. He adds that according to Uvogin, the chain user isn’t among them, so he suggests that they work in pairs to find someone who knows him. He tells them to meet back at the hideout at 10 p.m.
As Chrollo gives the order for the Spiders to go on a massacre around the Cemetery Building, Shalnark uses one as a human shield and then controls another with his Black Voice ability. When his puppet is killed, he sulks about having to find another. Following the deaths of the Ten Dons, Kortopi creates a copy of Shalnark's body in order to stage his death with several other Troupe members, while Shalnark uses his ability on the auctioneer and puts him on autopilot to run the auction. He later celebrates the success of their plan with the other Spiders back at the hideout.
When Chrollo writes Nobunaga's fortune, Shalnark asks the latter to read it. Upon reading Shizuku's, he states that there will be too many deaths in the Troupe if they go after the chain user, adding that while his and Nobunaga's abilities can be easily replaced, Shizuku and Pakunoda's cannot. He gives Chrollo the necessary information to have his own fortune written, which warns that he won’t be able to connect when he most needs to make a phone call and that it would be a mistake to answer his phone since the “reaper” calls collect one in three times. He then reads Hisoka's and stands in Nobunaga's way to prevent him from attacking the magician. He asks Hisoka why he’s unable to answer their questions. Nobunaga slips past Shalnark, but Chrollo manages to prevent the two from fighting. When he suggests that the chain user may have planted something on Hisoka, Shalnark reviews what they know about him and explains the differences between Conjuration and Manipulation, detailing the possible mechanics of the ability preventing Hisoka from speaking. He then asks Chrollo if they should stay or leave, with Chrollo deciding that they should stay in Yorknew.
Chrollo then splits the Troupe members into separate groups and tells them not to be alone for the next week, putting Shalnark in a team with Nobunaga and himself. At Chrollo’s request, Shalnark repeats everything Uvogin told him about the chain user and is surprised that the list of Nostrade bodyguards on the Hunter Website was already updated, agreeing to check it again after Chrollo asks him to do so. As Chrollo begins to make the connection between Neon Nostrade and the chain user, Shalnark realizes that he’s from the Kurta Clan and wants the Scarlet Eyes. After Kortopi points toward the location of the copied eyes and they deduce that they are at the Hotel Beitacle, Chrollo has Shalnark switch teams with Kortopi and stay behind at the hideout.
After Chrollo is captured by the chain user, Shalnark, Phinks, and Feitan arrive at the hotel where the others have captured Gon and Killua. Shalnark begins to give instructions when Chrollo’s phone rings and Phinks answers the call. After Phinks tries to lie about the hostages being injured, Pakunoda takes the phone and is told where to go. Shalnark agrees with Phinks and Feitan that they should follow her, worrying that following the chain user’s orders may result in the fortunes coming true. The chain user then calls Shalnark’s phone, and Shalnark hands it over to Phinks, yelling at him when he nearly breaks it. The Spiders eventually agree to return to the hideout while Pakunoda goes alone to the meeting. After Pakunoda returns and plans to leave again with just the two hostages, the Troupe fights over what to do next. Franklin asks Shalnark what the worst-case scenario would be, and Shalnark replies that Chrollo is already dead, several members are being manipulated, they don’t find out the chain user’s location, and the two boys escape. However, Franklin quickly corrects him by saying that the answer is all of them dying and the end of the Spiders. Shalnark agrees that Franklin is right. As Gon and Phinks toss Shalnark’s phone back and forth talking to Kurapika, Shalnark scowls at them as he continues to worry about them breaking it.
After successfully carrying out the hostage exchange, Pakunoda returns without Chrollo and fires six of her Memory Bombs into the four remaining founding members as well as Phinks and Shalnark, quickly collapsing afterwards. Shizuku checks her body and confirms that she's dead, asking the others what happened. Phinks then explains everything to the others.
Greed Island arc
After Feitan and Phinks return to the hideout with a copy of Greed Island and enter it, Shalnark reads the item's description in the Southernpiece Auction catalog with great interest, surprised that their bodies disappeared. After some online research, he invites Kortopi and Shizuku to accompany him into the game so that he can test a theory and so that he and Shizuku will be safer for the rest of the week. The three depart and begin to study the game's system. After witnessing the limited response patterns of the game’s NPCs, seeing that the cards copied by Kortopi cannot be turned into objects and Shizuku's Blinky cannot inhale the game’s special items, Shalnark realizes that the game functions with Nen. He explains his reasoning to his two companions, advancing the possibility that the island exists in the real world and not in virtual reality. He then plans to use a "Toraemon" card in order to collect all the special items in the game. He tells the two that their first priority is to get "Eye of God" or "Analysis" and to meet up with Phinks and Feitan.
After the five leave the island with samples of rocks, Shalnark analyzes them and eventually determines the general location in the real world. The five of them plus Franklin sail towards the location marked by Shalnark, where they indeed find an island. However, they are promptly detected by Eta. They swim ashore, with Shalnark reminding Shizuku that Blinky can suck out the water from her clothes. They soon encounter Razor, who introduces himself as a Game Master. He informs them that trespassers aren't welcome and that they can come back using the right way. He then uses an "Eliminate" card to send them to six different locations on the Azian Continent.
After returning the right way and realizing that Chrollo headed to the real Greed Island according to his fortune, Shalnark tells the others that he must have hired someone to play the game for him and then use his name as a message to them. As he adds that the exorcist must be on the island, Hisoka reveals himself and that it was his idea to use Chrollo's name. Finally locating the exorcist Abengane with the help of their new member Kalluto, the Troupe has Hisoka make a deal with him so that he will remove Kurapika's Judgment Chain from Chrollo's heart.
Chimera Ant arc
During the Chimera Ant crisis, Shalnark, Feitan, Bonolenov, Phinks, Kalluto, and Shizuku all journey to Meteor City. On their way there, they discuss how the Chimera Ant invasion happened and why some of them came to the city. The Troupe is met by some locals who tell them about the self-proclaimed Queen making a nest near the city and wreaking havoc amongst the people, and how the assembly is currently dealing with it. Seeing that no immediate progress is being made, the Troupe take it upon themselves to solve the Chimera Ant problem, with Phinks assuring the officials that they will exterminate the Queen by the end of the day. The Troupe members approach the enormous nest and walk right in through the front door.
With Kalluto surprised that they are going their separate ways, Phinks points out that he probably has abilities that he doesn't want the others to see. He also tells him that whoever kills the Queen first will become the acting leader. Shalnark soon encounters a large Chimera Ant, reminding himself that he can win as long as he stabs his opponent with his antenna. However, he wonders if it will be possible to pierce the Ant’s shell.
He attempts to get close, barely avoiding the Ant's sharp limbs, and concludes that his best shot is sticking the antenna in his joints as he twists. He calculates that he has a 20% chance of succeeding unscathed. With his agility, he manages to embed the antenna in the back of the Ant’s neck, but his arm is slightly injured. When the Ant goes limp, he pulls out his phone, but the Ant suddenly restrains him. Shalnark wonders why his ability didn’t work since he stabbed him with his antenna, but a small Ant named Boki suddenly appears and mentions that the larger Ant is named Pell. Both deduce that the other is a Manipulator and discuss the idea of first come, first served. Unable to free himself, Shalnark resigns himself to going into autopilot mode after Boki says that he will now take him to the Queen.
Shalnark asks what will happen to him, and Boki replies that he will work as a slave for the Queen until he dies. Laughing, Shalnark adds that he would prefer to die than serve someone he doesn’t like. Boki says that Shalnark can only move his mouth, but Shalnark points out that he can also move his fingers and left leg. When Boki prepares to take control of him, Shalnark explains that he always carries two antennae for emergencies, suddenly sticking it into his own leg and activating his autopilot mode. His aura output increases dramatically, and he dispatches the two Ants in an instant before Boki can finish telling Pell to remove the antenna from Shalnark’s leg. As the mode shuts down, Shalnark already begins to suffer from the pains that will immobilize him for the next few days. Walking away, he says that while the mode is extremely powerful, he hates not being able to remember anything and never feeling any sense of accomplishment.
He is the third Troupe member to arrive at Feitan and Zazan’s fight. He laughs at Shizuku's irritation when Phinks asks her if she lost, and then comments that Feitan is not in top form, much to Kalluto's annoyance. He watches in surprise as Zazan tears off her stinger and suddenly transforms. When she injures Feitan with aura and Phinks explains to Kalluto what happened, Shalnark adds that she’s the Queen for a reason. When Feitan is about to activate his Pain Packer, Shalnark and the other Spiders begin to run away. After Feitan successfully kills Zazan, the Troupe members encounter the transformed Meteor City residents, who all beg to be killed. However, Phinks refuses to do so and orders them to show what spirit they still have left as Meteor City natives. The other members ready their weapons, including Shalnark who readies his antennae, and the Troupe members easily take care of the transformed residents. After returning to the city, they decide to stay and take care of any more Ants that appear, but Shalnark receives a text from Nobunaga asking for help, leaving Phinks disappointed that it wasn't Chrollo contacting them.
13th Hunter Chairman Election arc
Succession Contest arc
Chrollo uses Black Voice in his deathmatch against Hisoka at Heavens Arena, implying that he met Shalnark and borrowed his ability sometime prior to the fight. Once the deathmatch is finished, Shalnark, Kortopi, and Machi stand around Hisoka's corpse to confirm his death. Kortopi asks if Machi is coming as he and Shalnark prepare to leave, but Machi replies that she will stitch Hisoka up since he paid her in advance. Kortopi whispers to Shalnark and confirms that Machi wouldn't accept money when Hisoka was fighting Chrollo, with Shalnark adding that Machi is a nice person at heart. After the two leave, Hisoka is revived and traps Machi in place as he vows to kill all the Spiders. Chrollo then contacts Shalnark and tells him about Kakin's journey to the New Continent, adding that the Troupe will steal the treasure on board. Chrollo asks if he will need his cell phone back and points out that he won’t be able to return the antennae, but Shalnark assures him that he doesn’t currently need it. Chrollo tells him that he will return it once they board the ship, and Shalnark happily looks forward to the whole Troupe getting back together. Shalnark then waits for Kortopi to leave a public restroom and wonders why he's taking so long. As Shalnark's phone rings again, he suddenly spots Hisoka walking out of the restroom carrying something in his hand. Shalnark drops his phone and runs toward Hisoka, who tosses the object in Shalnark's direction. After Shalnark catches it and sees that it's Kortopi's severed head, Hisoka quickly kills him and strings up his body on a playset as crows pick at him and Kortopi's head lying at his feet.
Antennae: Shalnark always carried two antennae on his person. They were shaped like bats with wide, cyclamen wings and a stylized head of the same color at the top. The tip was sharpened to allow him to stick the antenna into a target. They served as the medium of both his Nen abilities and were connected to his cell phone. Along with letting Chrollo borrow his ability, he also lent him both antennae, which were lost/destroyed during the fight.
Cell Phone: Shalnark used a special bat-shaped cell phone to activate his ability. While his targets were being controlled, their first-person perspective was displayed on the phone’s screen. It had been in his possession for years. The silhouette of a similar-looking object was also seen amid the garbage at Meteor City. Along with letting Chrollo borrow his ability, he also lent him his cell phone, which was still in Chrollo's possession at the time of Shalnark's death.
Abilities & Powers
Due to Shalnark being born in Meteor City, his existence is not recorded in any database, which makes obtaining information on him nearly impossible. Shalnark ranked tenth in arm-wrestling among the Troupe, and was capable enough to defend himself in combat, having survived a fight against multiple armed Mafia members and having obtained a Hunter License through legal means. Razor also deemed him an impressive individual. Nonetheless, he was easily killed by Hisoka, but he did not have access to his Nen ability at the time. He was one of the Troupe’s information gatherers, and they often relied on his advice and research. His eclectic knowledge, which ranged from getting rid of Spotted Leeches to piloting a hot-air balloon,, made him an extremely valuable asset to the group.
Enhanced Strength: Although not clearly shown, Shalnark had superhuman-like strength, as hinted by his arm-wrestling rank among the Troupe. When on autopilot, this attribute increased exponentially.
Enhanced Agility: During his fight against Pell, Shalnark showcased incredible movement, effectively dodging many of the creature’s attacks.
Advanced Speed: Shalnark was quite fast, which allowed him to avoid most of Pell's attacks and to activate his ability within a very short amount of time. When on autopilot, this attribute increased exponentially.
Genius-Level Intellect: Shalnark was one of the Troupe’s smartest and most knowledgeable members. He could accurately calculate the odds in the midst of a fight and in mere seconds, and his predictions were usually exact. He was adept at finding an enemy's weak points and exploiting them. From a handful of clues, he was able to deduce that Greed Island existed in the real world, as well as to pinpoint its location by analyzing its minerals and cross-referencing the data with nautical and geographical archives.
Shalnark was a Manipulator. The only Nen technique showed was Hatsu. By implanting an antenna into his targets, he could completely control them. If he stuck the antenna into himself, he could significantly enhance his own physical attributes. His abilities could only be used through his bat-shaped phone. Shalnark gave his Nen abilities, phone, and antennae to Chrollo in preparation for the latter's deathmatch against Hisoka. As a result, he was unable to use any of them against Hisoka’s swift attack.
|Shalnark's Nen Type: Manipulation|
|Type: Manipulation||Black Voice (携帯する他人の運命 Burakku Boisu, lit. "Mobile Fate Director")|
|After sticking a special antenna into his target, usually in the back of their neck, Shalnark gained complete control over their mind and actions, puppeteering them from afar through a special mobile phone until the antenna was removed or they died. He could also set them on autopilot, forcing them to follow his orders without his direct intervention. He carried real, physical antennae on his person when he fought, with which he could control two people at a time, one of which could be himself.|
|Type: Manipulation||Autopilot Mode*|
|By sticking an antenna into himself, Shalnark's body could go into autopilot mode and gain an immense amount of aura, resulting in a tremendous boost of speed and strength to dispatch any enemies within sight. Once Shalnark had entered the mode, he could not withdraw from it until the mission was completed. After leaving autopilot mode, Shalnark experienced intense muscle pain for multiple days and was completely unaware of what he had done. The ability had the additional benefit of preventing other Manipulators from controlling Shalnark, as it is impossible to gain control over a target that is already being manipulated. Aside from Manipulation, the increase in aura output and physical abilities might have involved Enhancement.|
Anime and Manga Differences
Intertextuality and References
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