The Battle Angel Alita manga series features a cast of characters designed by Yukito Kishiro. The series takes place around the city of Scrapyard where residents, of whom many are heavily modified by cybernetics to better cope with the hard life, are forced to make a living.
The series focuses on Alita, the protagonist and title character, a young cyborg with amnesia struggling to uncover her forgotten past through the only thing she remembers from it: fighting. Early on in the story, Daisuke Ido, a bounty-hunting cybernetic doctor who finds and revives Alita plays a major role as well, but midway through the manga he becomes marginalized as focus begins to increasingly shift to Desty Nova, an eccentric nanotechnology scientist who has fled from Tiphares. Nova is the mastermind behind many of the enemies and trials that Alita faces, but does not make an actual appearance until more than two years into the story, although he is alluded to early on. Finally, Kaos, Desty Nova's son, a frail and troubled radio DJ with psychometric powers, also begins to play a crucial role after he comes in contact with Alita. He broadcasts his popular radio show from the wastelands outside the Scrapyard, staying away from the increasing conflict between Tiphares and the rebel army Barjack.
Alita, known in Japan as , is the protagonist of Battle Angel Alita and its sequel, Battle Angel Alita: Last Order, both written by Yukito Kishiro. She is known for her fighting prowess as a practitioner of the powerful cyborg martial art Panzer Kunst and skill at the most popular sport in The Scrapyard, motorball. Alita is occasionally referred to as "octopus lips" due to her pouty expression. Alita's background and history were briefly hinted at in Battle Angel Alita, but were not fully explored until Last Order, which reveals that Alita was highly instrumental in creating the world within which both manga series are set.
Alita takes on a variety of roles through the manga, starting out as a hunter-warrior or licensed bounty hunter. She later becomes a motorball player, two years after which she is recruited by the Tipharean Ground Investigation Bureau to be an elite member of the TUNED, unknowingly serving as the basis for the development of their combat cyborgs known as the AR (Alita Replica) series which debut towards the end of Battle Angel Alita. In Last Order, she spearheads a team called the Space Angels which includes three of her replicas that competes in the LADDER-sponsored Zenith of Things Tournament.
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Official Site: Yukito Kishiro
Links: Wikipedia: Alita (Gally) GUNNM-cyclopedia A Small Gunnm FAQ