The Goddess of the Wired
Lain was a computer program created by a programmer named Masami Eiri who sought to use her in his means of blurring the line between reality and the wired world. To monitor her development, Lain was given physical form and placed within a false family with Yasuo, Miho and Mika to observe her as she gained sentience and autonomy.
Lain was created as a major character for the anime series, Serial Experiments Lain, created by Triangle Staff. Her character design was created by Yoshitoshi Abe, who developed Lain's unique hair style through imagining what would happen if she cut her own hair and made a ponytail out of what was left. It was also made to produce an asymmetrical appearance to show off Lain's unstable nature. A number of aspects to Lain's character such as the multiple personalities she struggles with and her bear pajamas were all ideas suggested by series writer Chiaki Konaka. Outside of the anime, Lain has also appeared in a Sony Playstation video game offering a different continuity of the series and a one-shot manga based on the video game continuity called The Nightmare of Fabrication, that was drawn by Abe. For the anime, Lain was voiced by Kaori Shimizu in Japanese and Bridget Hoffman in English.
Lain physically appears as a 14-year old girl, having brown hair and brown eyes. Her hair style is notable in that she has one strand of hair to the left side of her face that she has tied with a yellow hairband. When attending school, she is normally seen in her middle school uniform. While at home, she often wears a pair of teddy bear pajamas
Lain was seemingly disconnected from her surroundings and any interaction she would have with others. But upon learning of Chisa Yomoda's suicide, it sparked a change in Lain's persona as she developed a curiosity to explore the mysterious events taking place within the Wired. This resulted in the manifestation of multiple personalities that emerged from Lain, some of which she is unaware that she is subconsciously manipulating. There are three known personalities that are bare witness to from Lain throughout the series: normal, Wired and wild. Her normal personality is emotionally reserved and shy with her interactions with other. The Wired Lain has a more confident and serious personality willing to question those she suspects hiding ulterior motives. The wild Lain is a sly and mischievous persona willing to cause misery for her other personas and those that Lain develops bonds with.
Upon learning about Chisa Yomoda's suicide, Lain gradually developed a curiosity about it and other mysterious events that are connected to the Wired. This would cause her to develop a more outgoing personality as she interacted with Alice Mizuki and her group of friends as she continued investigating events within the Wired. As she investigates further into the events, Lain would come to learn about the mysterious group known as the Knights of the Eastern Calculus, the plans of Masami Eiri and the fact she was not human.
As events progressed, the Knights and the wild Lain would seek to break down Lain's bonds with the real world in order to drive her into retreating into the Wired and becoming submissive to Masami's plans, particularly the close bond that Lain developed with Alice. While at first giving into Masami, Lain would come to realize that had developed into an entity with complete control over the Wired and would defy the man who created her by thwarting his plans. To undo the suffering she caused Alice and to ensure that someone like Eiri would not try to blur reality again, Lain would warp reality to ensure that everyone would forget about her existence. Coming to accept her new role as "Goddess of the Wired", Lain would come to observe an older Alice now engaged to the teacher she was in a relationship with.
Lain is a nigh-omnipotent being able to control all aspects of the wired world and is capable of interacting with reality through creating an artificial physical body to interact with others. Through her power, Lain possesses the ability to control all electronics, affect the minds of others and warp reality on a planetary scale.