- "Now then...it's showtime!"
- ―Sakurai, after his transformation
- "Time for the show stopper!"
- ―Sakurai, beginning his finisher
He is originally from another world where Madoka became a Puella Magi, but never became a Witch, and is the older brother of the Akemi Homura of that world, as she had lost her parents in a car accident, leading to her being adopted.
He is partners with the Puella Magi Makiko Noro, and the rogue Incubator Inui.
Sakurai is described as being something of a yankee. He has messy brownish blonde hair, with a yellow neon streak running through the left side of his bangs, which slightly covers his left eye, which is colored light blue, in contrast to his dark gray right eye. His main attire consists of a black leather jacket with the sleeves rolled up to the elbows, and a white v-neck "T" shirt with a black striped star on the lower left side, and a red scarf around his neck. Below, he wears dark red jeans and black boots with silver straps. Lying lopsided around his waist is the WizarDriver in it's inactive form, with the hand in the form of a belt buckle. He tends to carry a black guitar case wherever he goes, due to his status as a drifter.
Sakurai is a very hard person to get a read on. When first encountered, he comes off as a sarcastic and witty traveler who likes bringing smiles to people's faces with his music, being a skilled musician. However, he likes to think of himself as an amateur when it comes to his music, thus he doesn't usually play, much to the disappointment of others. However, when revealed to be the Kamen Rider known as Wizard, he is shown to be flamboyant in his movements, yet also confident. This stems from the battles he has encountered in the past back in his world, but he is also very tactical and tends to plan ahead of time, having learned from experience. However, beneath all of this, he is a driven, if not hellbent individual, who wants to save anyone who has fallen into despair, no matter the cost. This is partially from his past with the Akemi Homura of his world, where he had failed to save her, and has not forgiven himself since. He is very insecure about his past, and gets angry whenever someone tries to pry into his personal life, unintentionally lashing out at Mami when she tried to pressure him into talking about his family, though he later apologized for his actions.
Like Homura, he wants to save Madoka from becoming a Puella Magi, though it was more out of obligation than personal reasons. That said, he tends to stay out of her business, feeling it would be rude to do so. It was why he had chosen to let Mami protect her during her first encounter with a Witch, rather than go in to save her. However, when push comes to shove, Sakurai will do everything he can to protect her and those he considers friends, both out of bonds and for his devotion for his mission.
It was later revealed by Makiko that, originally, Sakurai was hesitant to take up the name of Kamen Rider, and the only reason he accepted it was to protect Akemi. Her becoming a Witch was the primary factor behind his full acceptance and devotion into becoming the new "Magician of Hope." She also likened him to a living corpse for the first few weeks after Akemi's transformation.
Sakurai Sho was born in one of the many worlds of the Puella Magi universe. Prior to the Eclipse Night, the event that changed his life, he was an ordinary teen who dropped out of high school to pursue his dream of becoming a musician, much to the displeasure of his parents. However, 3 months after his decision, he encountered a girl living out in an abandoned motel that had recently lost her parents in an accident, and none of her relatives would look after her. For reasons unknown to even himself, Sakurai took her in, and tried to look after them. When it became clear that his gigs weren't cutting it, he resumed his schooling in order to obtain a degree and a part-time job in order to earn income. His parents approved of the decision, and upon learning of his reasons why, decided to adopt the girl. From that day forward, the girl known as Akemi Homura would be called Akemi Sho.
During his second year in high school, Sakurai was kidnapped by unknown individuals, alongside many others, and via unknown means, was forced into despair. To his horror, the people around him began turning into grotesque creatures. As he began to fall into despair, he remembered Akemi, and began to hold on to the hope that he would see her again. While he was unaware of it, by clinging to this thought, he had obtained "hope" and overcame "despair." He later fell unconscious, but when he awoke, he was by himself. He was then approached by a stranger clad in white with an amber mask, who introduced himself as the "White Wizard."
The White Wizard explained to the confused teen that the event, Eclipse Night, was an event more commonly known as the Wiseman's Sabbath, where Phantoms, those born of despair, captured humans who had innate magical power, and forced them to despair, in order to birth new Phantoms. Upon seeing him hold onto hope, the White Wizard bequeathed to him a strange belt, claiming that he had the power to save those who would fall into despair. Sakurai, however, afraid and confused, initially rejected it. Later, however, he would learn from Akemi that she had apparently entered into a contract with a creature called Kyuubey, and became a Puella Magi. Seeking out the White Wizard for answers, the man explained that there were creatures known as Incubators who offered contracts with humans born with innate magical power, "Gates." By making a contract with an Incubator, a Gate could become a Puella Magi, in order to have a wish granted. However, in doing so, they also combat monsters known as Witches, who, like Phantoms, are also born of dark emotions.
Fearing for his younger sibling, Sakurai begrudgingly accepted the belt, and thus became Kamen Rider Wizard. He, alongside his world's Madoka Kaname and Mami Tomoe, worked together and fought against Witches, as well as Phantoms. He had also grew to admire Madoka for her cheerfulness and happy attitude, as well as her resolve to see things through to the end, becoming one of the factors for him to realize what it meant to save those who would fall into despair.
Unfortunately, at an unknown point in time, he had noticed that Akemi had begun to grow burdened by her ordeals. He had thought nothing of it at first, believing she was just exhausted, but as time progressed, her condition worsened. During the battle against Walpurgis Night, an extremely powerful Witch, he, alongside Madoka, watched in horror as Akemi finally broke down when she saw Mami killed right before her eyes, exposing the risk behind becoming a Puella Magi. Despite having defeated the Witch, Madoka and Sakurai were unsuccessful in trying to bring Akemo to her senses, and she eventually fell into despair. Being both a Puella Magi, as well as a powerful Gate, she became a hybrid of Phantom and Witch.
It is unknown what happened afterwards, as Sakurai refuses to elaborate any further on the matter. He does, however, confirm that his world's Madoka is still alive, thus being one of the few Madokas to not become a Witch or be killed, like the majority of her counterparts in other worlds.
Akemi Homura Edit
Sakurai and Homura have a rather complicated relationship at best. Homura is very distrusting of him at first, given that he is working with an Incubator, and Sakurai distances himself from her, likely because she is a counterpart of his world's Akemi Homura. Sakurai does criticize her for her actions, however, saying that her chances of saving Madoka would improve if she had told the girl the risks about becoming a Puella Magi. Likewise, Homura criticizes him for his hypocritical actions, in that he could have saved Madoka before Mami did. Later on, the two do have a much more stable bond, though Sakurai still keep his distance. After learning of his past, Homura respects his decision, but does tell him that she is not "Akemi Sho," and therefore, he should understand that he has no reason to distance himself from her.
Akemi Sho Edit
The counterpart of Akemi Homura from Sakurai's world, and his adopted little sister. She had lost her parents in a car crash, and none of her relatives would take her in. Sakurai had taken her in for reasons unknown to even himself. He cared for her deeply, even going back to school to get a diploma and a part-time job to pay for living expenses. After learning about her, Sakurai's parents adopted her, thus making her his younger sibling. Sakurai described her as a bundle of nerves and something of a bunny rabbit, in that she got very sad whenever she felt lonely. He is also very concerned about her wellbeing as well, having chosen to become a Kamen Rider in order to look after her. He blames himself for not being able to save her from becoming a Witch/Phantom, leaving him to resolve to never let anyone succumb to despair ever again.
Madoka Kaname Edit
Sakurai, like Homura, shares a good bond with Madoka, in that the girl greatly enjoys his music, and that he enjoys her company and smile. He wants to save her from becoming a Puella Magi, but feels that it is not his place to pry into her matters, though he later informs her the risks of making a contract with an Incubator. As Sakurai reveals his past, he had a good relationship with his world's Madoka as well, even admiring her for her cheerful nature and resolve to see things through to the end, thus being one of the reasons why he chose to embrace his job as one who becomes hope for others. He even admitted to having a crush on her at one point, much to Madoka's embarrassment.
Mami Tomoe Edit
Sakurai and Mami share a cordial relationship at best, with her enjoying his music, like Madoka, and attends to every one of his concerts. Sakurai, likewise, usually visits her for tea and snacks. He later becomes a source of emotional strength for Mami later on, after she learns the truth about the Puella Magi. It is implied that Mami develops a crush on him as the story progresses.
Kyoko Sakura Edit
Sakurai and Kyoko share a somewhat friendly yet antagonistic relationship with one another. While they respect one another strength, they cannot see eye to eye regarding certain views. Sakurai calls her a "misguided brat" that will crash and burn one day because she's lost sight of her goals, and Kyoko calls him a hypocrite for wanting to save people from despair, yet doesn't do anything to prevent circumstances from happening. Later on, however, Kyoko would begrudgingly admit to herself that Sakurai was right about her losing sight of what she believed in, thanks to Sayaka, but still believes that he is a hypocrite.
Sayaka Miki Edit
Sakurai and Sayaka share a good relationship with one another. She greatly admires his ability to play music, and especially comes to respect him after he saves Kyousuke from turning into a Phantom, and helping reinvigorate his passion for music.
Makiko Noro Edit
Sakurai's partner in discovering the location of Witches and Phantoms, as well as the Puella Magi Rider Showtime's version of Koyomi. She comes from a world different from Madoka's and Sakurai's, where she had made a contract with the Incubator Inui. The two have a good relationship, and treat each other much like siblings would. Makiko even describes Sakurai as the dunce older brother, and she, the sheltered younger sister. She also hates it whenever Sakurai calls her a NEET, but not when someone else says it, likely because of their relationship.
The Incubator who made a contract with Makiko, and Sakurai's partner-in-crime when dealing with Phantoms and Witches. They get along extremely well, especially since they share the same passion for glazed donuts. Inui is often exasperated by Sakurai's antics and motivations behind his actions, but knows he means well.
The White Wizard Edit
The one responsible for granting Sakurai the WizarDriver. At first, Sakurai didn't trust, and was even hostile towards the robed magician, referring to him as the "bastard mage," though he later on shows the individual great respect, even thanking him for giving him the chance to become one who brings hope to those who suffer from despair. Likewise, the White Wizard shows nothing but great respect for Sakurai, even stating that he may outshine his predecesor (Haruto Soma).
Sakurai immediately makes it known that he does not trust the Incubator, nor likes him, calling him a heartless machine who cares only about his mission, a point that Inui, another Incubator, agrees with him on. Kyuubey, however, has shown little to no hostility towards Sakurai, instead merely watching and observing him due to his abilities.
Wizel Schnee Edit
Despite having met for only a short amount of time, Sakurai and Wizel share a mutual respect for one another, having the same goal in wanting to save others from falling into despair. Sakurai does tease him for his otherwise lazy attitude, while Wizel complains about his taste in music. Regardless, both admire each other greatly.
Yashiro Kuroka Edit
The relationship between Yashiro and Sakurai isn't quite clear, other than that Sakurai is aware that Yashiro is the RWBY dimension's Kamen Rider Decade. They do appear to be on good terms, though Yashiro warns Sakurai that one day, he may come to destroy his world, as it is his fate as the "Destroyer of Worlds."
- Sakurai plays several songs during the story, one of which is the opening theme to Kamen Rider Wizard, "Life is Showtime!"
- Sakurai's favorite food is glazed donuts, in contrast to Haruto Soma's being sugar donuts.
- Inui, jokingly, stated that Sakurai was the dense harem protagonist, which later turns out to be true, having earned the affections of Madoka and Mami.
- In his past time, Sakurai likes to play his guitar, and make new magic rings.
- His likes include music, playing video games with Makiko, and reading comic books. His dislikes include spicy foods, and anything other than sugar donuts.
- In RWBY Riders: Lifetime Showtime!, Sakurai made an appearance during the interlude into Volume 2, encountering the RWBY dimension's Kamen Rider Wizard. He was mistaken as the "Bujin Wizard," and was promptly attacked, though he cancelled his transformation before things got out of hand, claiming that he was looking for a friend of his named Yashiro.