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Manga: InuYasha
From left to right: Inuyasha, Miroku, Kagome, Shippo, and Sango.

InuYasha is an enormously popular anime based upon the similarly popular manga of the same name by Rumiko Takahashi. The show ran for seven seasons (167 episodes) on Japanese television; the series ended in September 2004. [adult swim] aired the final episode of a very decent English-language dub in October 2006 and continued to air it in the very early Sunday morning slot almost continuously (the only other show to have run longer on [as] is Cowboy Bebop) until 2014. In Canada, the dub aired on YTV where it was one of the channel's most popular anime shows. Inuyasha and several other supporting characters from the show appear in the Massive Multiplayer Crossover game Sunday VS Magazine Shuuketsu Choujou Daikessen.

Japanese Ordinary Middle School Student Kagome Higurashi, granddaughter of a Shinto priest, has the ability to climb down into an ancient well on the grounds of her grandfather's shrine and, in doing so, Time Travel to allegedly-feudal-Japan; this sounds cool until you learn that demons, goblins, vengeful ghosts, malevolent wizard-priests, short-tempered twelve-foot-tall ogres, and all manner of other creepy-crawlies are everywhere and you can barely swing your arms without hitting one of them. Significantly, this is one of the few Japanese fantasy anime that isn't set in a pseudo-medieval-European fantasy world; just about everything in it is based on Japanese myths and legends. Another noteworthy difference from most anime is that almost all of the characters who are supposed to be Japanese humans are actually depicted with black hair, instead of other Hair Colors.

On her first trip through the well, Kagome meets Inuyasha, an obnoxious, abrasive, arrogant half-demon teenage boy with long flowing white hair and super-cute doggy ears on top of his head. (His father, a dog-demon of some kind, had a taste for human women.) Inuyasha, needless to say, actually has a heart of gold, though he requires Kagome's insistence to do good deeds. You all knew that was coming, didn't you? Right? Right.

Kagome happens to be the reincarnation of the miko that Inuyasha once loved fifty years in his past, who just happened to be the one who fired a sacred arrow which sealed him to a sacred tree and essentially killed him. Kagome's arrival in the past is pivotal in that she is the one who releases Inuyasha from this "death" by pulling the arrow from his chest; her connection with his past love allows her to perform this otherwise impossible feat.

The small-scale structure of the story is episodic, with many a Monster of the Week (usually literally a monster). However, in addition to the romance angle between InuYasha and Kagome, there is an overarching plot about Kagome and her adventuring companions wandering pseudo-medieval-Japan in order to collect the pieces of the shattered Shikon no Tama/Jewel of Four Souls, which eventually turns into a struggle against the Big Bad — the evil incarnate that is Naraku, a human-turned-demon that seeks the Shikon Jewel in order to taint it and become a full-fledged demon with powers far beyond anything any demon has ever known, and whose plotting turns out to be behind just about all of the miseries that have befallen every main character. Over the course of the series, InuYasha and company confront Naraku several times, but each time he gets away, gaining more shards of the Jewel — and an extra power or two — in the process. Forcing Inuyasha to gain a new power as well just to ward off Naruku's attacks. Rise, rinse, and repeat till it's conclusion.

The original manga eventually reaches a resolution, but it takes its sweet time to do so (fifty-six books when the main plot would really need only, say, twenty), and the anime was Cut Short with no proper ending due in large part to actually catching up with the production of the manga and running out of episodal stories to do. The 26-episode anime series Inuyasha: The Final Act picks up where the original anime left off and covers the remaining chapters of the manga through to the story's conclusion.

You can find subtitled versions of both InuYasha and The Final Act on Hulu. The show (in dubbed form) aired for years on [adult swim] (and, later, the revived Toonami block), but the network lost the rights to it in early 2014. The crew behind the new Toonami have noted an interest in airing The Final Act, mentioning it as one of the "many shows [they've] been looking at". Both animes currently stream on the Neon Alley service.

For spinoff series and video games, see InuYasha.


InuYasha provides examples of:

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     A-F 

  • 0% Approval Rating: Naraku, he's so terrible, that his own minions, most of whom are made of his own flesh, despise him and several actively seek to overthrow him. That's right, he's so bad that his own body parts hates him.
  • 24-Hour Armor: Sesshoumaru and Kouga never go anywhere without their armor. Given that Inuyasha's fire-rat robe is supposed to double as armour, he never goes anywhere without it either. Sango also keeps hers on hand everywhere she goes, whether or not she's actually wearing it.
  • The Abridged Series:
    • There exists a series of parody clips that were made before the abridged craze, and they are probably the most well-known for InuYasha.
    • There is also ITAS, an Abridged Inuyasha done by ICanadianJutsuI, Scarlotte (ep 1-8), Shallirica (ep 9-present), and Dimensioncr8r (ep 9-present). of YouTube and hosted on the former's channel (which is here and here). Also here. It's quite funny and currently has 10 episodes. The guy who's doing it is on his ELEVENTH YT channel. There's also Inuyasha The Real World. Check it out!
  • Absurdly Youthful Mother: By the end of the story, Sango is about 19/20 years-old and already has three kids (two of them twins); however, this is justified since the setting is Feudal Japan.
  • Accidental Pervert: Inuyasha. Just how many times has he seen Kagome naked?
  • Accidentally Broke the MacGuffin: Near the beginning of the series Kagome shoots an arrow at a bird carrying the Shikon Jewel, but the arrow hits the Shikon Jewel itself, spreading shards of the Jewel over Warring States Era Japan and setting our heroes on a quest to gather the shards before they land in the hands of evil.
  • Action Dad / Mom: Miroku and Sango in the special chapter Since Then.
  • Action Girl: Sango, Kikyou, Ayame, eventually Kagome.
  • Action-Hogging Opening: One or two.
  • Actually a Doombot: Naraku’s puppets.
  • Adaptation Induced Plot Hole:
    • The anime makes the assertion that Kagome needs jewel shards in order to use the well, whereas the manga says no such thing. Later in the series when Kagome loses all her jewel shards and can still use the well, at first the anime tries to cover for itself by claiming Sango had a secret stash that Kagome could borrow, but later just quietly forgets about the whole thing and lets her use the well without any.
    • Shippo grabbing Tessaiga in a filler episode, you know, the sword that has an anti-youkai barrier that's pretty important to the plot.
    • The story is about the Shikon no Tama trying to renew its cycle, having the souls of a powerful miko and a composite of several youkai and a human, and needing similar souls, like Kikyou/Kagome and Naraku. All of this information is either left out or outright changed in the anime during the Jewel explanation.
  • Adorably Precocious Child: Shippo, though on the road to becoming more like Inuyasha.
  • Adventure Towns: All of the towns that Inuyasha's group visit.
  • Aerosol Flamethrower: Kagome uses one to attack a toad demon in episode 8.
  • Affably Evil/Faux Affably Evil: Several villains fit one or the other.
    • Even while fighting and talking about killing people, Yura is playful and flirty.
    • Naraku himself acts refined and regal even while talking about how he killed or is about to kill someone. After his upgrade at Mount Hakurei, he drops it completely in favor of being a Smug Super.
    • Bankotsu is laidback, illiterate and treasures loyalty, he also finds killing to be his calling.
    • Jakotsu is a misogynist murdering psychopath, but he's also incredibly bubbly about his "crushes", is loyal to Bankotsu and is genuinely one of his few friends.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: Kagura. Her death is quite tragic: she decides to save Kohaku knowing well that neither Akago nor Naraku will be happy with her betrayal. Naraku mockingly returns her heart before fatally poisoning her with his miasma. The heroes and even Sesshomaru rush to try to help her to no avail. She dies in a field of flowers, with a smile in her face for Sesshomaru being there, and her last thought being “I am the wind, as free as the wind.”
  • Alas, Poor Yorick: In the manga, during Goshinki attack, at one time the only two surviving kids are hugging the severed heads of their parents.
  • The Alcoholic: Mushin and Yakurou Dokusen.
  • All Amazons Want Hercules: Kagura, for Sesshoumaru.
  • Alleged Lookalikes: Everyone initially compares Kagome to Kikyo. They may technically have the "same" face (as it turns out they have the same soul), but when the series suffers from Only Six Faces and Kikyo and Kagome purposefully differ in hair style, habitual facial expressions, skin tone, and age, they don't look alike at all - at least, not any more alike than any other two random characters you could pick out. The anime has it worse, so that it's almost an Adaptation Induced Plot Hole there.
  • All of the Other Reindeer: Every hanyou in the story, including Inuyasha himself.
  • All Part of the Show: During a school festival episode, Inuyasha unwittingly interrupts Kagome's play by challenging the male lead to a duel, then slays a watermelon demon that suddenly appears, then jumps through a hole he made in the ceiling while carrying Kagome, and none of the Muggles in the audience realize this was unscripted.
  • Almighty Mom: Sesshoumaru's mother is a plot device designed to help Sesshoumaru's Character Development by achieving something almost no one else in the manga managed to do - putting him in his place in the most brutal manner possible.
  • Almost Kiss: Inuyasha and Kagome almost shared one before being rudely interrupted. It was the closest they got to a kiss in the manga. The Final Act fixed that.
  • Aloof Big Brother: Sesshomaru
  • Always Save the Girl: Sango suffers from this.
  • Always Someone Better: Kikyou, for Kagome.
  • Amazon Chaser: Sango is wanted by both Miroku and Kuranosuke because of her beauty and her strength.
  • Ambiguous Situation: In the ending, it's left ambiguous as to whether or not Kagome can use the well to travel through time anymore after she returns to the Feudal Era for good, but it's implied by her tearful farewell to her mother and Sota's conversation with his friends that she can't.
  • Amplifier Artifact: The Shikon Jewel is shattered by accident by one of Kagome's arrows. Other demons that get even one or two shards get a comparatively large power boost. Naraku collects all the shards for reassembly into the intact Jewel for the purpose of becoming the ultimate youkai.
  • Anatomy Of The Soul: The soul is divided in two: Kon and Haku. Kon is the heart (will) and Haku is the power that moves the body:
    • Moryomaru is just a bunch of dead youkai body parts animated by Haku. When Akago is inside of him, he provides the Kon.
    • Kikyo's Kon is the part she stole from Kagome's soul but she needs to constantly steal Haku to be able to move.
  • Anchored Ship: Both Inuyasha/Kagome and Miroku/Sango are Type 1.
  • And Then What?: Near the end, Byakuya asks Naraku what wish he will make on the Shikon Jewel after he has killed Inuyasha and the rest; he admits he isn't sure. Later Kagome correctly guesses that he had already made a wish but the Jewel didn't grant it.
  • And Your Little Dog Too: Naraku, who is behind almost everything bad that happens to, well, everyone.
  • Animate Dead: Kagura's Dance of the Dead.
  • Animation Bump: The anime series itself often goes from good to poor in sequential order, with a superbly animated episode followed by a greatly inferior one. For example, the finale of the Bankotsu fight has smoother animation than most of the series. The Final Act continues the trend of fluctuating quality, but is overall better than the earlier series. A shorter series with a generous budget means the show basically got the same quality as the earlier movies. Conspicuous CGI was the main offense.
  • Anti-Hero:
    • Kikyo settles into the role after her resurrection, once the worst of her initial rage has subsided.
    • Sesshomaru starts off as a villain, but subsequent Character Development shifts him from there to Anti-Villain and from there arguably to Anti-Hero; exactly where he falls tends to vary depending on your perspective.
    • A case can also be made for Kagura possibly reaching Anti-Hero status by the end of her character arc when she begins acting directly against Naraku - again depending on your mileage.
  • Anti-Villain: Saint Hakushin; Kagura and Sesshoumaru both evolve into this role as well.
  • Appendage Assimilation: Sesshoumaru tried to replace his severed arm with other youkai arms, but they all turned out to be useless and after a while he just stopped trying.
  • Applied Phlebotinum: The Shikon no Tama.
  • Armor-Piercing Question: Kagome to Naraku: "The Shikon Jewel didn't grant your real wish, did it?".
  • Armor-Piercing Slap: Kagome, and not only on Inuyasha. Sango, mostly on Miroku.
  • Art Evolution: At the beginning of the manga, Takahashi drew the characters with rounder faces, bigger eyes, and a very different style for the hair. Just look at Sesshoumaru.
  • Art Shift: The first three movies have a different character designer from the anime, resulting in this. This is averted for the fourth movie, however.
  • Artifact of Death: The Shikon no Tama and its search only brings death and destruction.
  • Artifact of Doom: There are... a lot of this in this show.
    • Yura of the Hair is actually a spirit born from a comb used to comb the hair of dead people. Destroying the comb destroys Yura.
    • The cursed Noh Mask. It is a deadly artifact that once placed on the face, it absorbs/consumes the wearer.
    • Later, Sesshomaru commissions the making of the deadly sword Tokijin, crafted from the teeth of Naraku's detachment Goshinki. It possesses its own maker, but when Sesshomaru takes it for himself, he shrugs off the sword's attempt to possess him through sheer willpower.
    • Kanna has her Mirror, which can steal the very soul of those she shows it to or, in some cases, absorb the power and devastating effect of a weapon and allow her to direct it back at the sender.
    • The Naginata of Kenkon, aka the Naginata of Heaven and Earth, was fashioned from the corpses of 222 demons by the same demonic smith who made Tokijin.
    • Dakki, the youki-absorbing sword that transformed its human smith into a pseudo-youkai in order to try and absorb Tessaiga's youki and then transferred the full force of Inu Yasha's attack to said smith's body in a desperate attempt to save itself.
    • The best example however, would be the Shikon no Tama, the real Big Bad of the story.
  • Artificial Human: Kikyo's body is made of her ashes and clay.
  • Artistic License - Biology: It's a funny notion that a dog-demon is several times stronger than a wolf-demon, when wolves in average are bigger, stronger and more ferocious than dogs, with dogs being naturally afraid of wolves to top it. Best not tell Inuyasha that.
  • As You Know: One of the many methods that the show uses to recap events.
  • Asian Rune Chant
  • Asshole Victim / Kick the Son of a Bitch: Inuyasha's Superpowered Evil Side killed several bandits in a brutal way; said bandits were knowingly working for a demon and personally fed innocent women to their demon boss while forcing an incapacitated Inuyasha and Miroku to watch.
  • Assimilation Backfire: This is how Moryomaru and the Infant are defeated by Naraku. Generally speaking, doing this to Naraku's never a good idea.
  • Attack Reflector: Kanna's mirror, and later Naraku's barrier develops this as well.
  • Attempted Rape: In the manga, Mukotsu attempts to rape Kagome but she fought him back. The anime tones this down into having Mukotsu try to force Kagome into marriage with him.
  • Awesome McCoolname:
    • Sesshoumaru's name is written with kanji meaning "kill," "life" or "genuine," and "perfection," a combination which could be interpreted to mean something to the effect of "perfect killer" or "complete destruction of life."
    • A number of the attack names also qualify, first among them Meidou Zangetsuha, which means "dark path of the dawn's moon blast".
  • Awful Truth: The truth about Tenseiga is kept secret for a long time because it's this trope for Sesshoumaru.
  • Ax-Crazy: Evil!Suikotsu, as well as Inuyasha himself whenever he goes in his youkai form.
  • Babies Ever After: In the manga's finale, Miroku and Sango have gotten married and have three children; twin girls and a baby boy who is born at the start of the final chapter.
  • Back-to-Back Badasses: Inuyasha and Koga vs. Naraku's two speedster detachments
  • Badass:
    • It is almost impossible to not be impressed by some of the characters' exploits in the story, such as Sesshomaru not flinching from having his arm ripped off, Kagome blasting Naraku till only his head remains just because he pissed her off, Naraku eating Moryoumaru from the inside out and later dying with smarmy remarks and a smile at the end of the series, Sango digging herself out of her own grave, Kagura slaying entire army of demon wolves with a couple of wind-blades, Inuyasha defeating the foe his father died fighting, Inuyasha being able to completely break the state of full-demon he became from losing Tessaiga and much more for every character.
    • Hell, Shippo is something of a badass, when one considers all the things he's done even though he's a little kid, up to and including having to be knocked out to keep from following the team into the final battle against Naraku... and then did it anyway once he regained consciousness. Just look how the much larger kitsune treat Shippo's exploits during the kitsune youjutsu exam that he didn't even know existed until after he was auto-enrolled into it by accident.
    • Whenever Inuyasha turns human he continues to try the same potentially fatal exploits that wouldn't even bruise him as a half demon, up to and including fighting homicidal demons three times his size. Crosses the line into Determinator territory when he (of course) keeps fighting after massive blood loss and broken bones.
  • Badass Crew: The Band of Seven.
  • Badass Family: Inuyasha, Sesshoumaru and their father; Sango, Kohaku and their father.
  • Badass in Distress:
    • Sesshoumaru in his fight with Magatsuhi when he has to be rescued by his brother. He gets stronger.
    • Inuyasha, whenever he turns human.
  • Badass Normal:
    • Sango. She's completely human and the only protagonist who doesn't have any kind of supernatural or magical power, but she's able to throw around the huge boomerang as if it were a toy, and is just about as good of a fighter as Inuyasha himself.
    • And of course, Kohaku. His Shikon shard doesn't seem to do anything but keep him alive and under Naraku's control, but by the end of the series he's able to easily slaughter groups of trained guards and youkai like they were nothing.
  • Band of Brothers: The Inu-tachi. The group gets together mostly because of the shared battle against Naraku. While at the beginning they weren't fond of each other, their loyalty and dedication to one another grows steadily, to the point of not even thinking about putting their lives in danger to save the others. They end up forming a weird but strong family who still make snide remarks at each other all the time.
  • Bandage Babe: Sango.
  • Bandaged Face: Onigumo.
  • The Barnum: Played for Laughs with Miroku. He gets better as time goes by.
  • Barrier Maiden: Poor little Shiori...
  • Barrier Warrior: There are several, including Miroku, Kikyo and Naraku, but the most impressive is Saint Hakushin who is able to create an enormous barrier surrounding Mt. Hakurei which is incredibly powerful, enough to weaken youkai in the surrounding area and purifying them instantly if they get too close.
  • Bash Brothers
  • Bathing Beauty: Kagome is the picture for the page.
  • Bathtub Bonding: Kagome and Sango, but instead of a bathtub it's a hot spring. They get to learn a lot more about each other after they have a bath together.
  • Battle Aura:
    • Demons and spiritually powerful humans have this.
    • Sango, the only member of the group that doesn't have supernatural powers, also manifests one when she's really pissed off, usually at Miroku. It sends Inuyasha ducking for cover.
  • Battle Boomerang: Hiraikotsu.
  • Battle Butler:
    • Kanna, the only minion who's honestly loyal ( At least until right before she dies.).
    • Byakuya's also completely loyal to Naraku, and like Kanna, throws his life away for one of Naraku's plans, though in his case he didn't even do a posthumous betrayal.
    • Jaken arguably also fits this trope, but with somewhat less "battle".
  • Battle Couple: Inuyasha/Kagome and Sango/Miroku. In the anime, this also extends to Inuyasha and Kikyou, although they're never shown fighting alongside one another in the manga.
  • Battle Tops: Shippo has an arsenal of tops.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: Inuyasha desires to become full youkai. When it happens, he doesn't want it anymore and does everything in his power to stay as a hanyou.
  • Beam Spam: Tessaiga gets one that would make a Gundam jealous.
  • Beast and Beauty: Inuyasha and Kagome
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Inuyasha and Kagome, especially at the beginning. They later become a variant since they come to an understanding as to their mutual feelings, but the belligerence doesn't die down.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Miroku is normally very calm and collected, even in the presence of Naraku. But if you dare make inappropriate advances on Sango, he will beat you into a pulp.
    • Manten gets extremely upset when his last few hairs are lost from his head.
    • Sesshoumaru's are mostly related to receiving Inuyasha's pity and hearing Kagura's death being insulted. The latter upset him so much that he broke Tokijin over it and endangered his own life in the process.
    • Discuss Inuyasha's love for Kikyo around Kagome. I dare you.
    • Threaten Inuyasha or any of Kagome's friends when she's around, only if you've made your peace with a higher power beforehand.
  • Betty and Veronica: Kagome is the Betty to Kikyo's Veronica and Inuyasha's Archie because she's his Nice Girl partner instead of the tragic priestess.
  • Beware of the Nice Ones: Jinenji.
  • BFG: Renkotsu's grenade launcher and gatling gun, And Ginkotsu's flak cannon and ( Missile launchers after being made into a giant cybernetic tank.).
  • BFS: The Tesseiga and Bankotsu's Banryu.
  • Big Bad: Naraku. Well, that's what the Shikon no Tama wants you to think.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Akago with Moryomaru.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Sesshomaru towards Inuyasha increasingly as the storyline progresses, Sango towards her little brother Kohaku, even the evil Hiten towards his younger brother Manten (and their little brothers love them too). Kagura also seems to develop one towards Kohaku, which ultimately led to her dying for it.
  • Big Brother Mentor: Miroku to Inuyasha.
  • Big Damn Heroes
  • The Big Damn Kiss: Inuyasha and Kagome in the finale of the anime.
  • Big Eater: Inuyasha and Shippo.
  • Big Entrance: If the main activity suddenly gets interrupted by everyone being drawn to what appears to be a massive bolt of lightning that crashes into the earth, rattling the ground and releasing an overload of raw power, it almost always means Sesshoumaru's just entered the scene.
  • Bigger Bad: The Shikon no Tama. It is the real evil Kagome had to destroy. Pretty much the cause of many a sorrow and strife in the series. Heck even Naraku was just acting on its behalf as its avatar (which makes sense, both were born from a cluster of demons merging together) and using him to renew its cycle.
  • Bird Run
  • Bishounen: Inuyasha, Sesshoumaru, Naraku.
  • The Blade Always Lands Pointy End In: And not just blades, but any weapon which is thrown or dropped, including staves and giant boomerangs.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: Sango has a retractable blade hidden in her right sleeve that she uses as a last resort.
  • Blade Brake:
    • Inuyasha rams Tessaiga into the ground to prevent being sucked into the Wind Tunnel. In one of many amusing examples of just how alike the two brothers really are, when Sesshoumaru first experiences the power of the Wind Tunnel, he reacts in exactly the same way (and since he's holding Tessaiga at the time, he even uses the same sword).
    • Also performed by Kohaku to prevent himself from falling to his death down a chasm.
    • Also by Kagome with Tessaiga inside Naraku's body.
  • Bland-Name Product: Wacdnalds, where Kagome and her school friends go to eat and hang around.
  • The Blank:
    • Musou, one of Naraku's incarnations, starts off this way, until he starts stealing people's faces (leaving them faceless and dead).
    • The Muonna that Sesshoumaru had impersonate Inuyasha's mother looked like this under her illusion.
  • Blatant Lies
  • Blessed with Suck / Cursed with Awesome:
    • Miroku. The Wind Tunnel in his right hand, a curse placed on his grandfather and passed down onto him, is basically a one-way dimensional gateway with the force of a minute black hole. Even the most powerful of demons seem to be unable to escape it if drawn inside — witness the spirit of Kaguya, an entity stated to be truly immortal, being banished forever by being drawn inside the Wind Tunnel. However, Miroku can only control it by wrapping his hand in certain special beads, and as Naraku created it, he has also created a counter for it: a rapidly-breeding wasp-like creature called Saimyosho contain a poison that will cause Miroku intense pain and eventually death if he draws them in. Oh, and the Wind Tunnel, even if not used, is slowly growing ever larger, until the day when it consumes Miroku and everything around him in a fair-sized Sphere of Destruction, just as it has already devoured his father and grandfather.
    • Inu Yasha's youkai form. Insanely high levels of strength and speed, a much improved healing factor, enough youki to make even Sesshoumaru feel one, brief moment of fear and have a youketsu capable of holding the evil spirit of the Shikon no Tama immobile against its will and decay a frggin' portal to hell when its sliced by the Dragon-Scale Tessaiga. Of course, there's the little matter of him being a bloodthirsty monster that has barely any of Inu Yasha's restraint, and each time it gets even less controllable and less intelligent. Of course, he does get to occasionally take advantage of it and Tessaiga at the same time, whenever someone starts stealing some of Tessaiga's forms, or he boosts Tessaiga with purified Shikon shards.
  • Blood from Every Orifice: This happens to Miroku when he takes a massive dose of Naraku's miasma into his Wind Tunnel in the process of trying to take him out once and for all.
  • Bloody Murder: Inuyasha's first and most basic ranged attack involves him making flying blades out of his blood (or, sometimes, other people's). He tends to pull it out only as a desperation move, for obvious reasons.
  • Blow You Away: Kagura. Her wind powers include tornados, flight, manipulating the wind to (attempt to) cut off the wind-based attacks of opponents and even Razor Wind.
  • Body Horror:
    • Naraku's main fighting style.
    • Also very noticeable when the living Noh mask attacks Kagome; the body it has is the corpses of its previous victims mashed together into one fleshy lump.
  • Body of Bodies: The list include the Flesh-eating Mask, Naraku's true form, the whole Kodoku spell and also Moryomaru's later forms.
  • Boomerang Comeback: Sango uses this technique several times. She lets her enemies attack her while Hiraikotsu is away so they'll be hit by it when is returning to her.
  • Bowdlerise: The anime edits or otherwise drops several scenes of blood and/or nudity from the manga:
  • Brains and Brawn: Inuyasha is the brawn to Kagome's brain.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Kohaku. After being revived, Naraku erased his memories to be able to control his mind. He then ordered Kohaku to kill a lot of innocent people, including his own sister.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: Shippo.
  • Break the Cutie: Kohaku.
  • Breath Weapon: Ah-Un being a dragon has this, in both heads.
  • Bridal Carry
  • Broken Bird: Kagura, Kikyou. Sango.
  • Broken Hero: Miroku is a carefree, cheerful guy in spite (or maybe because) of having death looming over him his whole life.
  • Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: Inuyasha and Kagome.
  • Brought Down to Normal: Happens to Inuyasha (and every other half demon) every month, most often during a plot that could be resolved effortlessly with Inuyasha's normal powers. It also happens to him during the Mount Hakurei arc.
  • Brutal Honesty: Inuyasha, which normally earns him a SIT!
  • Buried Alive: Sango, after being badly wounded and declared dead. She clawed her way out.
  • Cain and Abel: Inuyasha and Sesshoumaru for a while. A better example would be Kinka and Ginka, brothers who are attached to one another because neither of them had managed to kill each other in their childhood as was the nature of their species.
  • The Call Knows Where You Live: After returning to her time after her first trip to the feudal era, Kagome assumes the whole experience was a dream and proceeds to forget about the whole thing....until Inuyasha barges into her house while her family is having dinner. It doesn't help that one of the bad guys (Yura of the Hair) seeking the Shikon Jewel tries to enter Kagome's time moments later.
  • Call Back: The last opening song, ‘Kimi ga Inai Mirai’note , uses some phrases and titles from other opening and ending songs.
  • Calling Your Attacks: Once the manga hit its stride, almost all the characters do this. Uniquely, Sesshoumaru's the only one who is mostly too cool to call his attacks out loud. He thinks them instead.
  • Camp Gay: Suzaku of the Flower, a Demon Ninja based off of the Vermillion Phoenix. His comrades tell him several times to stop acting like that, as it creeps them out. Jakotsu of the Band of Seven is another example.
  • Canis Major: Sesshoumaru and his parents' true forms.
  • Canon Foreigner: Ayame (Koga's childhood love interest), and Akitoki Hojo (an ancestor of one Kagome's classmates) only appear in the anime.
  • Catchphrase Interruptus: Talking about his infamous question:
    Sango: After all, she's the one you asked to bear your child.
    Miroku: Well, it's something I always say when I meet a girl.
    Sango: You haven't said it to me though.
    Miroku: Forgive me Sango! Will you...
    Sango: You don't have to say it!
  • Cats Are Mean: A rather impressive filler arc showcased some cat demons as this.
  • Changed My Jumper: Kagome traveling through Feudal Japan in her school uniform with a very short skirt.
  • Changing Clothes Is a Free Action: Played straight by Sango at least once in the anime where she changes from her normal clothes to her armor in a second, while leaping. Usually she averts it though, either having some time to change, fighting in her kimono or already wearing her armor since the beginning.
  • Characterization Marches On: Probably what happened to the smiling, talkative Sesshoumaru. Lampshaded briefly in the manga, however. In the early days, his smiles were usually only sadistic. Later on in the manga, once Sesshoumaru's unsmiling, taciturn personality is established, Jaken does briefly observe that Sesshoumaru only smiles when he's in a killing mood.
  • Chastity Couple: Basically what Miroku and Sango become after the proposal and before their marriage.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Magatsuhi is first introduced in episode 26 (in Japanese, at least), despite not actually showing his hand for another 158 episodes.
  • The Chessmaster: The Shikon Jewel. Manipulated everyone from the beginning. Including Naraku, so he would take the place of the youkai inside, and tried to manipulate Kagome into making a selfish wish, which would condemn her to take Midoriko's place.
  • The Chew Toy:
  • Child Soldier: Sango has been a professional demon hunter since she was at least eleven.
  • Chivalrous Pervert: Miroku is able to behave himself when the situation calls for it.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Kagome, although it's Inuyasha who ends up doing the saving most of the time.
  • Clothing Damage: Kagura is especially prone to this, usually in order to provide excuses to show off the identifying spider-shaped scar on her back.
  • Cock Fight: Happens every time Inuyasha and Kouga meet.
  • Color Failure: When Shima claims that she has already given herself to Miroku; he, Sango and the youkai Nushi (who Shima is promised to marry) all experience this.
  • Combat Commentator: Everybody is guilty of this.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Miroku shows signs of this in his fight with Sango, tripping her with his staff so she'll lose Hiraikotsu. He's reminded painfully she has other weapons.
  • Combination Attack: The anime made up one for the films and a filler mini-arc involving Kagome's arrows and one of Inuyasha's special attacks combining together for impressive results. This doesn't actually make much sense because Kagome's arrows purify youki which is exactly what Inuyasha's attacks are made of, but it's not something that ever crops up in the manga.
  • Comedic Sociopathy: Where to begin? Kagome's abuse of Inuyasha, Sango's abuse of Miroku, Inuyasha's abuse of Shippo, Inuyasha and Miroku's abuse of each other, and Sesshomaru's abuse of Jaken are the more regular instances.
  • Comic Book Time: While the manga lasted for 12 years, the whole story happens in barely one year, not taking into account the three-year Time Skip at the end.
  • Compressed Adaptation: The last season of the anime, where about 10-20 chapters were compressed into each of 24 episodes.
  • Conspicuous CGI: Pops up rarely, though the worst case is a scene in The Final Act where the grass was computer animated, and not lighted the same way as the hand-drawn parts.
  • The Constant: The Sacred Tree and Bone Eater's Well. To the extent that, when the Bone Eater's Well disappears in the Final Battle, it's seen as a very, very bad sign by everyone on both sides of the well.
  • Conveniently an Orphan: Everyone in Inuyasha's group (except for Kagome who has a living mother), and the two humans who end up in Sesshoumaru's group are an orphan and Self-Made Orphan.
  • Conveniently Timed Attack From Behind: Inuyasha did this at one time and was almost sucked into the Wind Tunnel for his troubles.
  • Cool Clear Water: None of the character seem to worry about how safe the water is to drink unless it's because a dangerous Youkai might be lurking there waiting to pounce on unwary drinkers... despite the story being set during a time of rampant war, death and disease.
  • Cool Old Lady: Kaede and Jinenji's mother.
  • Cool Sword: Tessaiga, Tenseiga, Tokijin, Sou'unga, Bakusaiga.
  • Cooldown Hug: In the final episode of the (first) anime, when Inuyasha was turning into full youkai, Kagome's hug stopped the transformation. Justified in that she's in fact purifying the corrupt Shikon shard he was using.
  • The Corrupter: Naraku's favorite tactics are those that involve messing with his enemies' hearts.
  • Counter Attack: The Backlash Wave.
  • Crazy-Prepared: Sango habitually carries a backup weapon, a hidden backup backup weapon, and a considerable assortment of poisons designed for use against demons. She rarely ever gets past using Hiraikotsu and her short sword, though.
  • Creature Hunter Organization: There used to be a group of people dedicated to exterminate the Youkai who were causing mayhem in the villages. During a gory attack orchestrated by Naraku, all of them except two were killed. The two survivors are Sango and her brother Kohaku.
  • Creepy Centipedes: Mistress Centipede is the first and foremost instance, but generic giant centipede monsters turn out to be one of the most commonly-encountered and easily-dispatched types of mook.
  • Cross-Popping Veins
  • Cry into Chest:
    • Sango finally breaks down crying into Kagome's chest releasing all her heartache when the group forgive her for betraying them.
    • Kagome does this to Inuyasha a lot. It usually freaks him out somewhat.
  • Curse: The Kazaana/Wind Tunnel/Air Rip is a Hereditary Curse.
  • Cut Short: The anime initially ended just over half-way through the manga and there was nothing more for several years until the manga ended. This was finally subverted when a wrap-up series The Final Act was produced to conclude the anime, although it heavily truncated the story to try and fit over 200 chapters into 26 episodes.
  • Damaged Soul: Kikyo only has one part of her soul since Kagome has most of it. Which also means that Kagome's soul is missing a piece, but her soul is depicted as so unusually large and potent that it's not enough to notice.
  • Dangerously Genre Savvy: Naraku, through and through.
  • Dark Action Girl: Kagura (starts off this way), Tsubaki, Jakotsu (or so he thinks), Princess Abi, Mistress Centipede, Yura, Kaguya
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Inuyasha and Miroku.
    • Inuyasha was shunned by humans and hunted by youkai for being a hanyou (his half-brother hate him for that same reason), lost his mother early in his life and spent the rest alone, then he fell in love with Kikyo who betrayed him (or so he thought) and was sealed for fifty years.
    • Miroku witnessed his father fall victim to his curse when he was a little kid, watching him being consumed by his hand only leaving a big crater afterwards, and grew up knowing that that would be his fate one day.
  • Dark-Skinned Blond: Shiori.
  • Darkest Hour:
    • Sango and Miroku waiting for the Wind Tunnel to absorb them while their despair consumes the light within the Shikon no Tama leaving it in darkness.
    • Sesshoumaru's darkest hour occurs when he finally learns the truth about Tenseiga's origins and the real reason why he was given Meidou Zangetsuha, resulting in him believing that his father wanted Inuyasha to kill him to get the perfected technique back to Tessaiga. His Heroic BSOD is so overwhelming that even Myouga is desperate to help him. He's left so shaken that he leaves his group vulnerable for Naraku to attack them and Sango had to rescue them instead. Nothing in the manga - not even Kagura's death or Rin's second death - has ever made him despair the way thinking his father hated him did.
    • Inuyasha is tricked into thinking he murdered Kagome in his blood rage. This breaks him down so completely that he gives into his despair and demon blood.
  • Date Peepers: Every time Inuyasha/Kagome or Miroku/Sango have any romantic moments, the rest of the group will be either spying or eavesdropping.
  • Death by Origin Story
  • Death Equals Emotion: Kanna starts showing that she actually has emotions and cared for Kagura just a little bit before her death.
  • Death Glare: Sesshoumaru. Early in the manga, he scares off a pack of wolves with his glare alone. Later on, he's badly injured to such an unusual degree that Kagome and Shippou worry about it and discuss healing him. His glare sends both of them scurrying behind Inuyasha for protection.
  • Death Is Cheap: Ask Kikyo... or Kohaku... or Rin. The series does try not to take it too far: before he could master Tenseiga's Meidou Zangetsuha, Sesshoumaru had to learn that even Tenseiga's ability to revive the dead has its limits, since he couldn't properly appreciate the value of the lives of others as long as he assumed he could simply bring them back. However, the lesson is rather undermined when Sesshoumaru's mother revives Rin a second time anyway.
  • Death of the Hypotenuse: Kikyo.
  • Declaration of Protection: Inuyasha to Kagome: "Shut up! I'm saying I'll protect you!"
  • Deflector Shields
  • Defrosting Ice King: Sesshomaru, thanks to Rin.
  • Deliberate Injury Gambit: Inuyasha lets Sesshoumaru impale him through the chest, taking advantage of the moment and ripping off his older brother’s arm to get Tessaiga back.
  • Demon Head
  • Demon Slaying: A common theme of the series.
  • Depraved Homosexual: Jakotsu. He's Affably Evil enough to soften the effect a little, but still pretty depraved. He's also the only character to ever use the word 'sexy', at least in the anime.
  • Designated Girl Fight: Subverted. When the Inu-tachi plus Kouga face the Band of Seven, Sango ends up fighting Jakotsu, much to his chagrin.
  • Determinator: The series is full of them.
  • Devour the Dragon
  • Diagonal Cut: Inuyasha kills Hiten in this manner.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: Kikyo in Inuyasha's arms. It's worth mentioning that Naraku explicitly tried to invoke this, in a twisted Yandere fashion. (He was, as usual, the reason she was dying in the first place).
  • Dirty Old Man: Yakurou Dokusen.
  • Disappeared Dad: Just about everybody is missing at least a dad.
  • Disappears into Light: Kikyo.
  • Dismantled MacGuffin: The Shikon Jewel.
  • Disney Death: Too many to count.
  • Distant Finale
  • Distressed Damsel: The anime likes putting the female characters in distress much more than the manga does, especially Kagome and Rin. In the manga, however, Kagome's last true kidnapping was by the hands of the baby. After that she becomes a full-on Action Girl, saves Kikyo's life, defeats Naraku alone while burning in the flames of Hell, gets her ultimate weapon and her last part of Character Development after facing the shadows of her heart before ultimately killing Naraku and the Shikon Jewel. Rin isn't really kidnapped much, given the length of the manga, but the final time she's kidnapped lasts for quite a few chapters since it's the final battle.
  • Diving Save
  • Does Not Like Shoes: Boy howdy... It'd be faster to list the characters who do wear shoes or sandals in this. Rumiko Takahashi is pretty well known for her foot fetish, meaning you'll see plenty of her characters barefoot, and plenty of close-ups...
  • Dojikko: Rare male example: Akitoki Hojou. Also a Dogged Nice Guy towards Kagome, like one of his descendants.
  • Doom It Yourself: In one of the filler episodes, Inuyasha accidentally damages the handlebar to Kagome's new bicycle. While she goes to school, he volunteers to fix it. Given his lack of knowledge on bicycles - or anything else from the modern era for that matter - things quickly get out of hand, and by the time Kagome gets home, the bike is nothing but a mangled ruin.
  • Doomed Hometown: The demon slayers' village.
  • Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male: Kagome and Sango, oh so much.
  • Dragon Rider: Rin and Jaken. Kohaku, too, for a while.
  • Dramatic Drop: Played for Laughs. When Kagome asks Sango, who's cleaning Hiraikotsu, if she's in love with Miroku (more like states it), Sango drops the weapon in shock and breaks the floor.
  • Dramatic Wind
  • Dress Hits Floor
  • Dude, She's Like in a Coma: Ironically, Sango kissed Miroku while he was unconscious.
  • Dumbass Has a Point: Considering how Jaken only sees Rin as a bothersome and clueless kid, this would count when she's the one to point out to him that Kagura is possibly in love with Sesshomaru, something he completely dismisses.
  • Dying as Yourself
  • Dynamic Entry: Happens several times. One example consists of Kagome, Miroku and Sango being saved from Mukotsu by a clawed hand slicing into Mukotsu's body signify the arrival of - to Kagome's shock - Sesshoumaru rather than Inuyasha.
  • Dysfunction Junction: Of the group of five, at least three of them are severely broken emotionally, with huge trust issues, due to Dark And Troubled Pasts.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: After everything the main characters went through, almost all of them got a happy ending. Miroku and Sango are Happily Married and have three kids; Shippo is learning to get better with his powers; Kohaku, accompanied by Kirara, is atoning by helping other people; Rin is staying with Kaede and is often visited by Sesshoumaru; and even though they were separated for three years, Kagome and Inuyasha are reunited at the end.
  • Eat Me: Naraku lets Moryomaru absorb him so he could get close to Akago and consume both of them from the inside.
  • Effeminate Misogynistic Guy: Jakotsu.
  • Embarrassing Cover Up: Made by Kagome's grandfather.
  • Emotionless Girl: Kanna, at least before she dies.
  • Empathic Weapon: Several weapons in the series are this, most notably Tessaiga, Tenseiga and Hiraikotsu. Tokijin starts off as one, but its will is completely suppressed by Sesshoumaru's.
  • Enemy Within: Inuyasha and his Youkai blood. Fortunately he was able to fix the problem. Unfortunately there are other ways of unleashing it, and Naraku knows about it.
  • Episode Title Card: Always read aloud by Inuyasha himself.
  • Eternal English
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas:
    • Princess Abi joins Naraku to save her dying mother.
    • A female bone-youkai stole Sango's weapon to try and save her father.
    • While it's hard to tell how he and his mother feel about each other, a significant part of Sesshoumaru's character development involved getting over his daddy issues which required her help.
  • Even the Guys Want Him: Inuyasha not only is in the middle of a Love Triangle with Kagome and Kikyou, but Villainous Crossdresser Jakotsu is explicitly and obsessively in love with him. Jakotsu was also attracted to Sesshoumaru and Miroku, but concluded that he preferred Inuyasha.
  • Everyone Can See It: Everyone could see Inuyasha and Kagome liked each other since the beginning. Everyone could also see Sango liked Miroku, except for Inuyasha.
  • Everything's Worse with Bees: The Saimyoushou, the poisonous insects Naraku uses.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: At one point, Naraku is utterly confused over the fact that, no matter what he makes Kohaku do, Sango simply will not kill him. Much later, he also remarks that the simple fact that Inuyasha's group would show mercy to Kanna, who had been sent on a Suicide Mission against them, actually makes him feel sick.
  • Evil Evolves:
    • Naraku. Oh, Naraku.
    • Tessaiga, though just demonic and not technically evil, qualifies as well late in the series, absorbing power from the demons it slays.
  • Evil Me Scares Me: Inuyasha fears that his Superpowered Evil Side will kill his companions, especially Kagome.
  • Evil Plan: Each villain has one but its Naraku's that drive the plot.
  • Evil Weapon: Tokijin.
  • Eviler than Thou: Moryomaru's a mean guy but he's just a thug compared to Naraku.
  • Excalibur in the Rust: In the hands of almost anyone except Inuyasha, Tessaiga looks like a katana that has seen better days. When Inuyasha weilds it, the blade takes its true form.
  • Exponential Plot Delay: It never ends! It never ends! (Well, until it finally does; the story does progress and characters do develop, just very slowly except for near the beginning and end of the series.)
  • Expy: Mostly of Ranma 1/2. Rumiko Takahashi herself admitted that the InuKag romance was supposed to be the Ranma/Akane romance as it should have been written. Sango resembles Ukyo Kuonji in terms of design and Miroku looks a lot like Shinnosuke (and like the young Luckyosai, Happosai's "old friend"). Also, Myoga resembles manga-Happosai in looks though not personality. And if you look at it the right way, Koga/Ryoga Hibiki. Bonus points for the fact that Ranma and Inuyasha share voice actors in both Japanese and English (Kappei Yamaguchi and Richard Ian Cox, though only for the latter half of Ranma in Dick's case), and Kelly Sheridan is the English voice for both Ukyo and Sango. Further, David Kaye voices both Soun and Sesshomaru, and Paul Dobson voiced both Happosai and Myoga.
  • Eye Colour Change: When Inuyasha and Sesshomaru transform, the sclera of their eyes turn red and their irises blue.
  • Eye Scream: In the manga, Sesshoumaru stabs Inuyasha's right eye in order to get the black pearl that's hidden there, a portal to his father's grave.
  • Face Fault: Justified via phlebotinum: "SIT, BOY!".
  • Face Stealer: Muso.
  • Facial Markings: Sesshomaru and his mother have them. So does Inuyasha when he's a full demon.
  • The Fair Folk: The demons tend to be otherworldly and ruthless. Some are very ugly, others very beautiful. It's stated that the most powerful and dangerous ones are those that look like humans. This actually plays into Japanese culture; the beings referred to in Japan as Youkai and Obake would probably be considered more Fey than Demons by Western standards.
  • Family Theme Naming: The three named characters from the demon slayers' village — Sango, her younger brother Kohaku, and their pet Kirara — all have names referring to semi-precious stones (coral, amber and mica, respectively). Additionally, Kikyou and her younger sister Kaede both have names that begin with K and refer to plants (bellflower and maple). Also Kagome and Souta could be taken to mean Bamboo and young grass respectively.
  • Famous Last Words: Kagura's last thoughts: "I am the Wind. The Free Wind"
  • Fanservice: Kagome does seem in many shots to be almost entirely made up of very shapely legs, though we never see up her skirt. Twice, Kagome's breasts were bared though this is edited for the American releases as is the short shot of Shippo disrobing for a dip in an onsen. Also, Sango's Taijiya uniform is very form fitting. All of the main girls have been subject to nude scenes shortly after their introduction. Kagura's top gets ripped off numerous times. Never mind the extreme frequency with which Inuyasha, Miroku and other male characters go shirtless.
  • Fantastic Racism: Humans and demons don't get along very well, even when they aren't straight-up killing each other.
  • Fantastic Romance: Inuyasha and Kagome.
  • Fast Forward To Reunion: Inuyasha and Kagome are separated after the final battle when the well stops working. We get a Time Skip of 3 years and they are reunited for good.
  • Fate Worse than Death: Midoriko and the composite youkai, having to battle each other forever inside the Shikon Jewel.
  • Feel No Pain:
    • Yakurou Dokusen offers a "medicine" to Miroku so he'll stop feeling pain everytime he sucks poison into his curse but it won't cure the shouki wounds that are killing him. He takes it.
    • Shikon shards in the body will make it insensitive to pain no matter how severe the injuries are, which is how, for example, Sango manages to go toe-to-toe with Inuyasha in her first appearance despite being grievously injured.
  • Field Power Effect: The one night of the month half-demons lose their powers.
  • Final Battle: The series' final battle takes place when the heros plus Sesshomaru's group go inside Naraku after he transforms into a giant, floating spider.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: The main group was formed because all the members (except Shippo) share a common goal, and at first they were hostile to each other. Inuyasha and Kagome are forced to work together to find the Shikon shards, they let Miroku join after learning they share a common enemy and Sango joins for the same reason. They warm up to each other and end up being best friends since they don't really have anyone else.
  • Fire Keeps It Dead: In the first chapter a mortally wounded Kikyo has herself cremated with the Shikon Jewel so she can take it to the afterlife with her and keep it out of the demons' hands. Unfortunately she didn't count on her reincarnation as Kagome five centuries later.
  • The First Cut Is the Deepest: Kikyo to Inuyasha
  • First Law of Resurrection: Kikyo, and arguably Rin. And definitely Kohaku
  • First Love: Kikyou is this for Inuyasha, he loves her and feels he failed her, feeling responsible for her.
  • First Name Basis:
    • Inuyasha starts to call Kagome by name after defeating Yura. Miroku jumps directly to first name basis with no honorifics with Sango, the only woman he addresses in such a fashion.
    • Averted by Sango, who never uses Miroku's name at all, always calling him "Houshi-sama" even after she's promised to marry him. (This and Miroku's use of yobisute mentioned above are distinctions not carried over into the English dub due to the difficulty of translating them effectively.)
  • Fish Out of Temporal Water: Both Kagome and Inuyasha.
  • Florence Nightingale Effect: How Onigumo falls in love with Kikyo.
  • Follow the Chaos: Naraku, along with his "stink", also tends to leave behind trails of dead bodies everywhere he goes
  • Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: Plays with this. Kagome isn't flighty per se, but often forgets to bring her homework to class, only for Sota to pick up the slack. Then again, considering she's spending most of her time in the Feudal Era, she can hardly be blamed for losing focus on her supposed off days.
  • For the Evulz: If Naraku isn't gathering jewel shards or working on his next Evil Plan to off Inuyasha and his pals, he'll be ruining the lives of anyone and everyone he comes across just because he can.
  • The Force Is Strong with This One: Most of the main characters are able to detect youki.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • A brilliantly blatant yet easy-to-miss example occurs when Naraku manipulates Sango into stealing Tessaiga for him. He is able to hold it and briefly uses it against her. Amids the ensuing drama, the audience isn't likely to remember that said sword was suppossed to have a demon-repelling barrier around it that should've left a full demon like Naraku with some ugly burns on his hand... this is explained when we learn that Naraku isn't a full demon at all...
    • Another moment occurs as a result of the same incident. Sango tells Inuyasha's group that they can't trust her because, if Naraku attempts to use the same tactic on her in the future (making her choose between friends and a loved one), she'll make the same decision all over again. Right at the end of the manga, Naraku attempts what Sango feared and does indeed try to repeat the incident. This time, it's a choice between Rin's life and Miroku's life and, as warned, Sango does indeed make the same decision again: attempting to kill Rin to save Miroku.
    • Another throwaway comment, this time by Toutousai. When Inuyasha first masters the Kaze no Kizu while fighting Sesshoumaru and it's revealed at the same time that Tenseiga has chosen Sesshoumaru as its true master, Toutousai mutters to himself "Whether Tenseiga lives or dies will depend on Sesshoumaru's heart". It takes hindsight to show us just how significant that statement proved to be.
    • After just getting Tessaiga but still being unable to make it transform against Sesshoumaru, Inuyasha complains to Myouga about how useless it is, to which Myouga responds that it's a memento from his father and to never let go of it.
    • In the manga, the fact that there is more to the Jewel and that it seems to be manipulating a lot of what has happened, is introduced very early (basically along with Sango). Magatsuhi is also mentioned at this time and this actually also happens in the anime, but it's Lost in Translation.
  • The Four Gods: A Quirky Miniboss Squad in one of the late filler arcs (first half of the anime's sixth season) is a squad of four Demon Ninjas based on them; Byakko of the Snow (Byakko the White Tiger), Genbu of the Darkness (Genbu the Black Turtle), Seiryuu of the Moon (Seiryuu the Azure Dragon), and Suzaku of the Flower (Suzaku the Vermillion Phoenix).
  • Free Sample Plot Coupon: Downplayed. Kagome already has the Shikon pearl inside her at the start of the series, but after some unsavory events it is fragmented into several pieces, scattered through Feudal Japan. Thus the objective is to retrieve them, and the first of them is held by a very powerful opponent, negating the trope entirely.

     G-L 

  • Gatling Good: Renkotsu battles Inuyasha with a giant gatling gun that seems to fire mortar rounds or cannon balls.
  • Gentle Giant: Jinenji.
  • Get a Hold of Yourself, Man!:
    • After Miroku hallucinates about the Wind Tunnel absorbing him, Inuyasha has to hit him to get him out of the shock.
    • At one point, Inuyasha punches himself in the face in an attempt to get rid of Magatsuhi, who is possessing him.
  • Giggling Villain: Kukuku.
  • Go Out with a Smile: Several instances.
    • Kikyo happily smiles at Inuyasha before her definitive death.
    • Kagura is happy that Sesshoumaru went specifically to see her and smiles as she fades away.
  • Good Is Not Nice: Inuyasha.
  • Good Parents: Mama Higurashi.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: Scars in the shape of a spider on one back mark incarnations of Naraku; it's a taint that he can't get away from because of the part of him that's Onigumo.
  • Good Thing You Can Heal: Inuyasha.
  • Gotta Catch 'Em All: Find all the Shikon shards, especially before Naraku does.
  • Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: Inuyasha and Kagome. Inverted by Sango and Miroku.
  • Hair Colors
  • Half-Human Hybrid: The title character.
  • Handicapped Badass: Sesshoumaru lost his left arm fighting Inuyasha in his first appearance. He still was one of the most powerful characters in the series. Also, while Kikyou is among the strongest characters in the show, her frail artificial body heavily handicaps her; smacking her hard enough or stealing her souls back is often enough to render her helpless.
  • Handsome Lech: Miroku
  • Happily Married: In the ending, Miroku and Sango, and probably Inuyasha and Kagome too.
  • Harmful to Minors: Poor Shippo, Kohaku and Rin.
  • Hazy Feel Turn
  • He Will Not Cry, so I Cry for Him: Jaken does this for Sesshoumaru when Rin dies.
  • Head Pet: Inverted. When Shippo travels on Kirara, he usually does it on her head.
  • Healing Factor: Everyone with youkai blood. Sesshoumaru ups this to eleven later on in the series, however, which results in him being able to regenerate his missing left arm.
  • Healing Shiv: Sesshomaru's sword Tenseiga can revive the dead by cutting down the pallbearers of the afterlife as they come to collect the dead person's soul. However, as is eventually revealed under tragic circumstances, people can be revived in this manner only once.
  • Heel-Face Turn: Kagura. She first betrays Naraku to help Hakudoshi, but then she betrays both to save Kohaku's life. She even gets offered a spot with Inuyasha's group, but she declines. This offer may have saved her life. Temporarily.
  • Held Gaze: This type of gaze occurs a few times between several different pairs, including a moment between Sesshoumaru and Kagura. As her life ebbs away, they talk, run out of words, and finally hold each other's gaze as she distintegrates into the wind.
  • Hero Stole My Bike: Miroku stole Kagome's bike and the Shikon Shard she carried when they first met.
  • Heroic Resolve
  • Heroic Sacrifice
  • Hey, That's My Line!
  • Hidden Eyes
  • High On Catnip: In a filler episode, a villain incapacitates Kirara with catnip.
  • Hime Cut: Many, notably Kikyou and Sango.
  • Hitchhiker Heroes: It starts with only Kagome and Inuyasha looking for shards, after some time they encounter Shippo who tags along, a little after that Miroku joins up, and finally after that, Sango and Kirara also join them.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Taigokumaru picks the wrong time to mouth off about his son Tsukuyomaru's death to Shiori, his granddaughter. Guess what happens.
  • Homage: Doesn't the whole plot around how only the "right" person can pull the sword Tessaiga from the place it stands remind alot of King Arthur?
  • Home Sweet Home: All the protagonists settle down in Kaede's village at the end.
  • Honor Before Reason
  • Horned Humanoid
  • Horse of a Different Color: Kirara and Ah-Un.
  • How Dare You Die on Me!
  • How Do I Shot Web?: It takes quite some time for Inuyasha to master the Wind Scar.
  • Human Mom, Non-human Dad: Almost always the case for any half-demon who appears in the series, starting with Inuyasha himself and also including Jinenji and Shiori. The only exception is the one-shot filler episode character Gyuoh, who is the offspring of a human man and a cow demon.
  • Human Shield: Naraku uses Rin as a shield while prompts Sango to kill him.
  • Hurting Hero: Kikyo, Sango, Miroku is the cheerful kind, Kohaku after he regains his memories and Inuyasha after some Character Development.
  • Hybrid Power: Inuyasha has a lot of demonic power from his father, but his human side has certain advantages of its own. Due to his incredibly powerful father he has more power than many demons, and his human side grants him use of the sword forged from his father's fang, which lets him take out any demons his own powers can't take.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Miroku: "What a terrible guy, to trick girls with a fake medicine"
  • I Am A Humanitarian: Several Youkai feeds on humans/humans innards, but Tokajin the sennin takes the cake. Seriously toned down in the anime.
  • I Am Not Weasel: A Running Gag in the series is that a lot of creatures will be persistently called a tanuki, especially Shippo.
  • I Am Your Opponent: Used several times by Inuyasha and Sango; inverted by Naraku.
  • I Can Still Fight: Mainly Inuyasha and Sango. Sesshoumaru, too, at one point - although he manages to avoid these exact words, he still ends up in an argument with Inuyasha over whether he should be on the battlefield at all.
  • I Choose to Stay: After finishing her education, Kagome opts to remain in the past with Inuyasha.
  • I Die Free: Kagura only desire is to be free but doesn't want to die to get it so she does everything in her power to get Naraku killed without him knowing. When she chooses Kohaku's life before her own and gets impaled by Naraku for her troubles, she realizes that dying was the only way to be free. (Further confirmed by Byakuya who mentions that the detachments would die anyway when Naraku is killed).
  • I Have You Now, My Pretty: Mukotsu, on Kagome. Jakotsu, on Inuyasha.
  • I Have Your Wife: Naraku revived and brainwashed Kohaku just to mess with Sango.
  • I Just Want To Be Free: Kagura.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: Kikyo.
  • "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight: Basically every time Sango encounters brainwashed!Kohaku.
  • I Never Told You My Name: In the Hoshiyomi filler arc, demons manage to get a photo of three of Kagome's friends from her backpack, and use it to create puppets of them in order to trick Kagome and Hojo into handing over the magic blade that their master needs. Kagome is suspicious to begin with, but her suspicions are confirmed when one of the three calls her by her name - which she hadn't mentioned to them.
  • I Shall Taunt You: Mouryoumaru tries to goad Inuyasha into getting so angry that he does something stupid by insulting Kagura's death. To everyone's shock (including Mouryoumaru's) the one who flies into an Unstoppable Rage is actually Sesshoumaru instead, who becomes so upset that he breaks Tokijin and puts his own life in danger.
  • I Take Offense to That Last One: InuYasha called Miroku a "fake lechering monk" once. His response? "I may be a lecher, but how dare you call me a fake!
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: This is Miroku's reaction when Takeda proposes marriage to Sango, much to Kagome's frustration.
  • I Was Just Passing Through: Sesshoumaru's favorite excuse whenever he helps the heroes.
  • Identity Amnesia: Kohaku.
  • Idiot Ball: Shippo in episode 50, unintentionally provokes Inuyasha into using the Tessaiga which was hard to use after being reforged, while for once he was trying to be pragmatic and use his claws against Kagura's weak demons prior to the big slip of the tongue.
  • If I Can't Have You: Naraku with Kikyou. He tricks Kikyou and Inuyasha into betraying each other, in hopes that he might be able to whisk the girl away after she's killed her former lover, but to much of his dismay she decides to choose death. Then when she's resurrected, he tries to kill her over and over again until he finally succeeds. He even wanted her to die in his arms, hoping that Inuyasha would be too late.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice:
    • Happens several times in the manga, bad guys impaling good guys, good guys impaling bad guys. Brothers impaling each other.
    • Magatsuhi first impales Sesshoumaru's only arm three times and later impales him twice through the chest.
    • Naraku imapaled Kagura. He was careful enough not to hurt her recently returned heart though.
  • Implied Love Interest: Sesshoumaru and Kagura, whose feeling are never specifically confirmed but whose significance to one another is clear in the later parts of the storyline (and helpfully spotlighted by Rin).
  • Impossibly Cool Clothes: The demon slayers' uniforms, plus Inuyasha's fire rat kimono.
  • In a Single Bound: Justified with Inuyasha and other youkais, not so much for humans.
  • In the Past, Everyone Will Be Famous: Subverted. When Inuyasha and Kagome meet a young samurai named Nobunaga, she immediately asks for his autograph excited to be meeting the famous Oda Nobunaga. It turns out he's Amari Nobunaga and is offended to be mistaken for that "idiot".
  • Incendiary Exponent: The first time Inuyasha turns into a human, he ends up having to fight a spider demon. So he pulls up a bunch of wooden grave markers amidst cries of blasphemy, sets them on fire, and then uses them as flaming javelins.
  • Infinity+1 Sword: By the end of the series, Tessaiga can generate huge energy blasts, reflect incoming energy attacks, launch a spray of adamantine spikes, cut through energy barriers, siphon demonic energy, and CREATE DIMENSIONAL PORTALS TO THE UNDERWORLD.
  • Interrupted Suicide: Inuyasha arrives just in the nick of time to stop Sango from killing her brother and committing suicide.
  • Interspecies Romance: Inuyasha, Shiori and Jinenji all have human mothers and Youkai fathers. And Inuyasha himself with Kagome and Kikyou.
  • Intoxication Ensues: Inuyasha: "I ain't drunk. And why are there two Kagomes?" On another occasion he ends following a butterfly and falling off a cliff.
  • Involuntary Shapeshifting: Inuyasha turns human during the night of the new moon. He also transforms into full youkai when in danger (and not having Tessaiga near to seal his blood) and when a very corrupt Shikon shard is nearby (and not having Kagome near to purify him).
  • Jidai Geki: The story (while not in the present) takes place during the Sengoku Jidai.
  • Joker Immunity: Naraku in the anime.
  • Joshikousei: Kagome
  • Journey to the West:
    • A Shout-Out only found in the anime version is the appearance of a Boar Demon named Chokyukai, who claims to be a descendent of Chohakkai, aka "Disciple Pigsy". He also has a monkey and a scrawny kappa as his slaves, and claims that they are descendents of Shagoyjo (aka "Disciple Sandy") and Son Goku (aka "Monkey", aka "Sun Wukong"). Kagome has to explain to Inuyasha and co. that Chokyukai is talking about the famous tale of a Monk who travelled to India alongside a pig demon, a water demon, and a rebellious monkey god to retrieve sacred sutras.
    • The main characters mirror the Journey's main characters to some extent. Inuyasha just like Goku is bad tempered, is set free from a long curse at the beginning, has an elongable weapon, has animal traits and is subdued by a talisman which is under control of the person he's protecting. Kagome, like Tripitaka, is on a quest for a sacred item, is the reincarnation of a noble soul of the past, is the preferred target of demons and is helpless compared to most other characters. Miroku and Sango have some traits in common with Pigsy and Sandy respectively.
  • Just a Kid: Lord Kagewaki: "The most skilled [slayers]? But I see here before me a young girl, and you even brought a small child".
  • Just Following Orders: Byakuya's excuse to Sesshoumaru when he interferes with Sesshoumaru's pursuit of Mouryoumaru is, "don't hate me, I'm just doing my job".
  • Kabuki Sounds: Boy howdy.
  • Ki Attacks: Most all the attacks Inuyasha does are ki attacks focused through his sword; he rarely uses it to actually cut anyone, aside from monster-like demons. This is eventually lampshaded by Sesshoumaru, who cryptically advises his brother that he's put so many weird powers into the blade that he's forgotten what the point of a sword is (the point of the sword is to cut).
  • Killer Rabbit: Kirara. She's usually a very small and cute kitty with two tails but she can transform into a large saber-toothed cat with flames around her feet and tails, and in this form she's able to fly and carry up to three people on her back.
  • Kiss of Life: Miroku tries this on Sango. Guess what.
  • Kitsune: Shippo. One episode featured an Inn full of them.
  • Knife Outline: When Inuyasha was trying to steal the Jewel from Kikyo, instead of killing him she decided to pin him like this to a tree.
  • Kryptonite Is Everywhere: Even though the Wind Tunnel is the most powerful (and destructive) weapon, Miroku rarely gets to use it since it's vulnerable to poison, and more often than not the foe they're fighting is poisonous. Naraku has the Saimyoshou (poisonous hell bees) exactly for this reason.
  • Lady and Knight: Inuyasha had these dynamics with Kikyo first, and later has them with Kagome.
  • Lady of War: Sango, Kikyo and Kagura.
  • Ladykiller in Love: Miroku falls hard for Sango. He still flirts with any beautiful lady, though.
  • Lap Pillow: Inuyasha rests in Kagome's lap while he's poisoned during his human night.
  • Last Kiss: Inuyasha and Kikyo shared a kiss right before she died.
  • Last of His Kind: Sango is the last surviving demon slayer. At least until Kohaku really gets better.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Inuyasha's preferred battle strategy.
  • Let's You and Him Fight: This is Naraku's preferred tactic.
  • Licked by the Dog: Sesshomaru and Rin
  • Light Is Not Good
  • Lighter and Softer: One example would be Mukotsu's attempted rape of Kagome in the manga. The anime gets around this by having Mukotsu attempt to force Kagome into marriage with him.
  • Lightning Glare
  • Lima Syndrome: Kouga falls for Kagome after kidnapping her.
  • Limited Wardrobe
  • Living Memory: Resurrected Kikyo.
  • Lonely Together: Inuyasha and Kikyo in the past. Both felt extremely alone and bonded over it.
  • Long Haired Prettyboy: Sesshoumaru, Inuyasha, Naraku and Bankotsu.
  • Long Runner: The first anime was 167 episodes plus four movies, five in Japan. The Final Act added 26 episodes, for a grand TV total of 193. The manga started in 1996, and finally concluded in June 2008 with its 558th chapter. Overall the series ran for twelve years.
  • Losing Your Head: The first of Naraku's Demon Puppets.
  • Lotus-Eater Machine: The Shikon no Tama makes Kagome believe she's living a normal life while she's trapped inside the jewel.
  • Lovable Coward: Myoga.
  • Love Bubbles
  • Love Dodecahedron: There are so many love triangles that include the two main protagonists that it inevitably results in this: Inuyasha/Kagome/Kikyo, Inuyasha/Kikyo/Naraku, Inuyasha/Kagome/Koga, Kagome/Koga/Ayame, Kagome/Inuyasha/Hojo, and then we have Inuyasha/Jakotsu.
  • Love Epiphany: Kagome, not that it changes anything
  • Love Hurts
  • Love Transcends Spacetime
  • Love Triangle: Kagome/Inuyasha/Kikyo
  • Loveable Rogue: Miroku doesn't have any problems with lying, cheating, conning, stealing, drinking, womanizing, etc. He's still one of the good guys and a Buddhist monk.
  • Lovecraftian Superpower: Naraku, who’s an amalgamation of thousands of youkai.
  • Loved Ones Montage
  • Loyal Animal Companion: Kirara, especially to Sango.
  • Loyal Phlebotinum: Several weapons.
    • Tessaiga initially appears to be this, then it seems to be averted when it's revealed Sesshoumaru can use it as well, it's only the youkai-repelling barrier that stops him. Finally, it's confirmed during a Die or Fly test of worth when Sesshoumaru deliberately steals Tessaiga's power to test its bond with Inuyasha only to find the power immediately flees back to Inuyasha at the first chance it gets.
    • Toukijin is so powerful and evil not even Toutousai can approach it. Sesshoumaru overcomes the blade's evil will easily and the sword obeys him loyally until the day it's destroyed.
    • Tenseiga is extremely loyal to Sesshoumaru even though he doesn't want it at all. Even when he deliberately shatters the blade and discards it, the sword ends up reforging itself and landing back on the ground near Sesshoumaru. The only reason Tenseiga is not a Clingy MacGuffin is because it can be physically separated from Sesshoumaru. It just won't stay separated.
  • Luminescent Blush: Particularly Sango, but also Kagome and Inuyasha when things get a little too "romantic" between them.
  • Lunacy: Inuyasha loses his powers whenever is the new moon.

     M-R 
  • Magic Skirt: Kohaku has more panty shots than Kagome...
  • Magical Gesture: Mikos and monks use this.
  • Maligned Mixed Marriage: Shiori and Jinenji's parents definitely suffered this.
  • Man Behind the Man:
    • Nearly every antagonist the Inu-tachi face is either working for or is a direct detachment of Naraku himself.
    • Near the end of the manga, it's implied that the Shikon no Tama, or rather, the aggregate demon inside it manipulated Naraku in a bid to free itself while perpetuating the Vicious Cycle. The last chapter implies that the Shikon no Tama was the REAL Big Bad that Kagome was sent back in time to defeat.
  • The Man Behind The Monsters
  • Manipulative Bastard: Naraku loves to turn people against each other. And the Shikon Jewel itself to Naraku and practically everyone in the series who used the Jewel.
  • Manly Tears: Inuyasha shed tears when Kagome, Sango and Miroku survived after thinking they had died. And later, he cried as he held a dying Kikyo in his arms.
  • Master of Illusion: Byakuya.
  • Master of the Mixed Message: Miroku so very much. His proposal is infamous for this: first telling Sango she's a special woman to him but later saying he can't love her and she's only a friend to fight alongside with, and then culminating with asking her if she would live with him and bear his child after Naraku is defeated.
  • Master Poisoner: Mukotsu of the Band of Seven, Yakurou Dokusen and Sango.
  • Master Swordsman: Sesshomaru
  • Mayfly-December Romance: Since youkai are Really 700 Years Old, any relationship between a human and a youkai. Curiously enough, in the three known relationships like this, the youkai died first.
  • Meaningful Name: The series is rife with them.
    • Inuyasha himself, whose name means Dog-Yaksa. A yaksa is a spirit who in Buddhism serves a benevolent god that protects the righteous. Because Tessaiga is meant to be used for the protection of humans, Inuyasha's name suits him very well.
    • Naraku means "abyss", Tessaiga literally translates into "Iron Crushing Fang", Sesshomaru translates into something like "perfect killing circle" (Yikes) and Miroku is the Japanese name for the future Buddha.
    • Another very noticeable example is the entire Band of Seven, whose names all end with "-kotsu" (meaning "bone"), indicating their undead natures. The prefixes of their names are individually meaningful as well; for instance, the "ja-" in Jakotsu's name means "snake," a reference to his serpent-like Whip Sword (accordingly named "Jakotsu-to," "snake bone sword").
  • Meditating Under a Waterfall: Miroku.
  • Mega Neko: Kirara.
  • Megaton Punch: Inuyasha.
  • Men Don't Cry: Inuyasha says this to a crying Shippo when they think Kagome, Miroku and Sango have died. When it turns out they haven't, Inuyasha tries to hide his tears which Shippo is fast to point out. Sesshoumaru also never cries, to the extent where Jaken will cry for him where necessary.
  • Merger of Souls:
    • Demons do this all the time, fusing together to make more powerful demons. The Shikon Jewel was created when a particularly large number of demons fused with a human to fight a priestess. After a long battle both souls fused and crystallized into the series' MacGuffin.
    • Naraku was created when the deranged and perverse thief (and Kikyou's Stalker with a Crush) Onigumo merged with thousands of demons. And at one point in order to obtain a stronger body, he perfoms a Kodoku spell: thousands of fierce demons fight inside a cave in a mountain, and the winner absorb and merge with the losers. Eventually Naraku ends up absorbing the surviving demon in himself.
  • Mind-Control Eyes: Kohaku and Kagome.
  • Mineral MacGuffin: The Shikon no Tama/Jewel of Four Souls
  • Missing Mom
  • Mistaken for Dying: Mushin in a filler episode of the anime.
  • Mistaken for Granite: A pair of statues guard the doorway to the underworld.
  • Mistaken for Quake: In the episode "Battle Against the Dried-Up Demons at the Cultural Festival", Kagome wonders if the ground shaking is an earthquake, but it's actually a demon catfish flopping around on top of the school.
  • Moment Killer:
    • Kagome and Inuyasha get interrupted several times. One noteworthy example happens towards the end of the story when they're alone in her house and are about to kiss when Souta comes crashing through the door.
    • Miroku and Sango on the other hand don’t need any help, they’ll ruin the moment themselves.
  • Monster Lord
  • Monster of the Week
  • Monstrosity Equals Weakness: It's stated that the more human-looking demons are the most powerful.
  • Morality Pet: Rin, for Sesshoumaru. Kohaku becomes something of a Morality Pet for Kagura for a short time until she dies saving his life, resulting in him defaulting to Sesshoumaru. One imagines that if everyone else got killed off, Fluffy'd probably end up with Shippo as well.
  • More Than Infinite: Unlike Tessaiga, Bakusaiga does not need multiple flashy techniques. It has just one. Chain Reaction Destruction. It nukes everything - even things it didn't cut in the first place if they come into contact with anything that took the original blow. It can take out thousands in a single blow.
  • Morphic Resonance: When Shippo shape shifts he is usually unable to conceal his tail.
  • Motive Decay: Naraku.
    • He himself admits once he has the complete jewel, he's not sure what to do with it, largely because all the things he wanted it for, he either already has now or doesn't need or want them anymore. He decides to just use the jewel's power to kill Inuyasha, and since he's spent so long fighting Inuyasha, he admits outright he's not sure what he's gonna do after that. It says something of how long the series runs that the Big Bad loses track of exactly why he's the Big Bad.
    • Kagome confronting Naraku near the end and making the unusually astute guess that The Shikon no Tama did not grant Naraku's wish is really one of the best moments of the series. Naraku states more explicitly at the moment of his death, that his wish was to have Kikyou's heart, and the possibility of being with her in the afterlife, which the Shikon no Tama could not give him. Failing this, he instead planned to replace Midoriko and the youkai with himself and Kagome, by wishing to become part of the Shikon no Tama and by using the stolen Meidou to trap Kagome with the Shikon no Tama. (This of course was really the wish of the Shikon no Tama itself.) The (uncertain) implication is that Kagome could not be trapped in the Shikon no Tama unless she made a wish on it, and any wish would do except for the wish for the Shikon no Tama to be destroyed.
  • Mouthy Kid: Shippo.
  • The Movie: Four times. They're generally non-serial, but occasionally nods to them are thrown into the anime, like Sesshomaru's Soryuha technique, which was made up for a movie. The fandom periodically circulates rumours of a fifth but that generally refers to either the ending of an old computer game or a more recent OVA that was released as part of the Rumic World Specials and can be found, with minor editing, as episode 15 of the The Final Act. For the movies' tropes go to their respective pages:
  • Mr. Vice Guy: Miroku.
  • Muggle and Magical Love Triangle: Kagome has the most desired boy in school fall in love with her, but even when she goes on dates with him she finds herself thinking about Inu Yasha, half-dog demon from the mythic past.
  • Multi-Melee Master: All demon slayers are this, carrying a main weapon and a short sword, and if Sango is any indication, a chain and a hidden blade in their sleeve, too. Sango even fights with the Hiraikotsu and the sword at the same time.
  • Murder the Hypotenuse:
    • Kikyo kinda tries this, letting Kagome fall to Naraku's miasma.
    • Naraku is intent on killing Inuyasha. Although he also is intent on killing the other cathetus.
  • Muscles Are Meaningless: All strong characters are rather lean.
  • My Instincts Are Showing: Inuyasha.
    • He sometimes snarls when angered or sensing danger.
    • He bounces after a stick that Kagome purposefully throws with an excited face, and seems fond of pestering the Higurashis' cat.
    • In one of the OVAs and at another point in the manga, he shakes himself to get dry.
    • He usually tracks someone (often Kagome) by getting down on all fours and sniffing the ground.
    • He can also been seen kicking up dirt with his legs at an object when he's comically angered, such as when he and Kagome had a fight because of Koga. After Kagome's returned to her world in fury, Inuyasha is seen doing this to the well.
    • Chapter 392 ("Peaceful Table") has Inuyasha acting like a dog throughout the entirety of it, from scratching his head with his leg to run randomly in circles from boredom to cowering in an apologetic stance by Kagome's feet when she's mad at him.
  • My Kung-Fu Is Stronger Than Yours
  • Mystical White Hair: With a very few brown-haired exceptions, all of the normal humans in the series have black hair (or had it previously and went grey with age). The white hair of characters like Inuyasha and Sesshoumaru marks them as obviously supernatural.
  • Naked First Impression: Miroku to Kagome (she didn't see him).
  • Naked on Arrival: Kikyou was resurrected naked.
  • Named Weapons: Everybody's got one.
  • Narrating the Obvious
  • Never Trust a Hair Tonic: Two demon brothers kidnap Kagome. She thinks they simply want to eat her, but it turns out one of them is severely balding and embarrassed about it, and he has heard you can get a hair growth potion by boiling down a human maiden. At hearing this, Kagome angrily insists they eat her instead.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Literally for Kagome. She managed to kill the youkai that had stolen the Shikon no Tama but in the process also broke the jewel, putting into motion the plot of the story.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability:
    • Naraku in many different ways depending on his current body.
    • The Shikon no Tama.
    • In the end, Sesshoumaru is revealed to be this when the Ultimate Evil tries to kill him by stabbing him twice in the chest. It only makes him even stronger than he used to be.
  • Noble Demon: Inu-no-Taisho was probably one. Sesshoumaru's mother might also be one, but her single appearance leaves it difficult to tell: although she participates in Inu-no-Taisho's plan to teach Sesshoumaru compassion, interpretations vary as to whether or not she demonstrates a Lack of Empathy. Character Development eventually lands Sesshoumaru in this category; other examples include Totosai, Housenki, and the fathers of Jinenji and Shiori. As a rule, if you have a half-demon child, you are probably a Noble Demon.
  • No Cure for Evil:
    • Sesshoumaru, courtesy of Tenseiga, at least until he receives Character Development.
    • Averted with Kikyou, who spent much of the manga as an evil mockery of her former gentle self while continuing to retain her healing abilities and her desire to heal. Eventually, her kind nature was saved and restored.
  • No One Could Survive That: That's why Sango was Buried Alive, after being stabbed in the back and shot with arrows.
  • No Ontological Inertia: The only way for Miroku to free himself from the Wind Tunnel is to kill Naraku, the one who placed the curse on his grandfather.
  • No Social Skills: Inuyasha is terrible when dealing with people.
  • Noble Male, Roguish Male: Inuyasha is violent, reckless and rude while Miroku is charming, calm and world-wise.
  • Noblewoman's Laugh: Most every female villain.
  • Non-Human Sidekick: Kirara to Sango.
  • Normally, I Would Be Dead Now: Sango. Also, Kagura who gets blasted through the heart and only survives because Naraku had confiscated her heart.
  • Not Brainwashed: After Kohaku regains his memories, he decides to act like he's still under Naraku's control to be near him and find a way to kill him.
  • Not Now, We're Too Busy Crying Over You:
    • The end of the "Fateful Night in Togenkyo" story ends with Kagome, Miroku, and Shippo standing at the edge of a cliff and mourning for Inuyasha, who apparently fell to his death. When Inuyasha, coming up behind them, takes exception to Kagome calling him an idiot for dying, it takes the rest of the cast an extra line or two of dialogue before they catch on.
    • This happens a few times in the show. The first time is when Shippo first appears. Inuyasha is crying over Kagome who thanks to the foxfire protecting her, looks like a dead spirit (and Myoga the flea is so certain of this that he manages to convince Inuyasha).
  • Not Quite Dead: Kikyo quite a few times, she seems to be prone to fall from cliffs.
  • Not What It Looks Like: When Inuyasha refuses to let Kagome check on his injuries after their battle with Yura of the Hair, she tries to tear off his shirt in order to check for any serious damage. When Kaede and some of the children from the village bump into the two, they think they're doing....something else.
  • Now or Never Kiss: The reason why Sango kissed Miroku. Unfortunately for him, he was unconscious.
  • Nun Too Holy: Miroku is a Buddhist monk... who chases after women, has tried to peep on women bathing at least once, is willing to use violence to make others agree with him (he's beaten up the Tanuki Hatchi at least once, and then threatened to use the Wind Tunnel on him a different time) and is quite willing to fake exorcisms in order to get food, money, lodgings or any combination of the aforemention. Of course, this kind of plays on real-world stereotypes of actual monkish behavior from that time period.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Totosai.
  • Ocular Gushers: Kagome's grandfather, particularly.
  • Odd Couple
  • Oddly Visible Eyebrows: Everyone, but especially Inuyasha.
  • Official Couple: Miroku and Sango become pretty much official in the middle of the story, Inuyasha and Kagome stay not-quite official until the very last second.
  • Offing the Offspring: Naraku. He abandons Hakudoshi to be killed, impales and poisons Kagura, and makes Kanna explode.
  • Oh Crap: Naraku has several, like when Kagome blew up his body realizing she's Kikyo's reincarnation or when Kohaku tried to purify him with the light in his shard. In those instances he's always quick to run. His servants likewise get more than a few, especially Byakuya who thought he could handle Sesshoumaru with an army of a few thousand youkai to back him up. He was wrong.
  • Old Retainer: Myoga and Jaken.
  • On The Next Episode Of Catchphrase: Kagome's 'See ya soon!'
  • One-Man Army: Despite the back-up his friends give him, Inuyasha is more than capable of this. His sword can slay a hundred youkai with a single swing... and that's its weakest ability. Then there's Miroku, who can take out many youkai with his Wind Tunnel (when he's allowed to use it). And Sesshoumaru's sword can slay thousands of youkai with a single swing.
  • The One That Got Away: Debatably Sesshomaru and Kagura, sounds like a classic case of losing the one you love before getting a chance to tell them how you feel.
  • One-Winged Angel: Naraku has 5 of them in the final battle.
  • Only I Can Kill Him: Everyone wants to kill Naraku, but Kikyo puts special emphasis on how she is the only one who can really do it. She doesn't, although her efforts prove integral to his eventual defeat.
  • The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: Sesshoumaru declares his claim on Inuyasha's life after Inuyasha receives Tessaiga, the sword that Sesshoumaru wants for himself. As his Character Development progresses, it's not long before his "nobody kills my brother but me" attitude starts coming across as a face-saving excuse to get involved in Inuyasha's battles without admitting that he doesn't actually want him dead any more.
  • Only Six Faces: There are in fact Only Four Faces - Young Woman, Young Man, Old Woman, and Old Man. The difference between the first two and last is also debatable. Kikyo and Kagome are the only two characters that have any business looking alike, but they look like just about every other young woman, and even some of the men. Ironically, Kikyo and Kagome are two of the more distinct comparisons, given their different hairstyles in the anime.
  • Open Minded Parent: Nobody in her family minds that Kagome is gone for days or weeks at a time adventuring in a past era full of Youkai and missing a lot of school to do it, or that she's falling for a guy who's only half human; on the contrary, they cheerfully make up excuses for her to explain her absences.
  • Ordinary High-School Student: Kagome
  • Ornamental Weapon: Kouga carries a sword he never uses. He even admitted he just had it for decoration after having to use it to free himself from Moryomaru.
  • Orphean Rescue
  • Our Dragons Are Different:
    • Ah-Un is a kind, loyal, two-headed dragon-horse that travels with Sesshoumaru. In the anime, he's also made herbivorous.
    • Ryoukotsusei is a giant elder Dragon whose Nigh Invulnerable and speaks through what looks like a Noh mask in the middle of his forehead. Inuyasha's father is fatally wounded fighting and sealing him.
  • Our Time Travel Is Different: Wormhole Time Travel through the well.
  • Our Zombies Are Different Type R: Kikyo, Kohaku and the Band of Seven.
  • Out, Damned Spot!: Inuyasha, and later Suikotsu (the good one).
  • Outdoor Bath Peeping: With Miroku around, it was inevitable.
  • Overtook the Manga: The first anime ended without any resolution when it overtook the manga. After the manga ended, a second anime Inuyasha: The Final Act was made and continued the story from where the first one left off.
  • Papa Wolf: Sesshomaru, who dives into hell in order to save his Morality Pet Rin and kicks the King of Hell's ass in order to save her and was very clearly in pain about her death.
  • Paper Fan of Doom
  • Paper Talisman: Miroku uses his ofudas to exorcise demons and rip-off wealthy people.
  • Parental Abandonment: Every major character:
    • Inuyasha: His father died after his fight with Ryukotsusei shortly after he was born, his mother died when he was a kid.
    • Kagome: Her father is barely mentioned. In a novel it's revealed that he died in an accident when she was younger.
    • Shippo: His father was killed by the Thunder Brothers soon before his introduction. His mother is never mentioned.
    • Miroku: His father was consumed by the Wind Tunnel when he was little, his mother is never mentioned.
    • Sango: Her father was killed by Kohaku during their introduction, her mother is never mentioned.
  • Parental Favoritism: Sesshomaru’s ego has a real problem with this, thinking his father prefered the half-human Inuyasha.
  • Parrot Pet Position: Kirara (while in her small form) and Shippo normally travel on someone's shoulder.
  • Pastel-Chalked Freeze Frame
  • Percussive Prevention: Inuyasha punched Miroku in order to prevent him from using the Wind Tunnel after it was just repaired.
  • Physical Scars, Psychological Scars:
    • Sango has a scar on her back where her brother stabbed her, a memento of when her family, village and life were destroyed by Naraku.
    • Naraku has a burn scar in the shape of a spider on his back reminding him of his despised human core.
    • Kagura has the same scar as Naraku, a symbol of her enslavement.
  • Please Kill Me If It Satisfies You: Sango offered her life to Sesshoumaru after she tried to kill Rin to save Miroku but Sesshoumaru just seemed to forgive her. While his thoughts and feelings about the situation are left ambiguous, it probably helped Sango's case that she apologize to Rin while giving the girl her mask to protect her from Naraku's miasma.
  • Please Put Some Clothes On: In the Tokajin arc, Inuyasha comes to rescue Kagome just to find her naked. After a few awkward seconds, he throws her his haori.
  • Pointy Ears: Usually to help identify who the human-looking demons are. Not all of them have it but still...
  • Poison Is Corrosive
  • Poisonous Person: Naraku oozes miasma.
  • Portal Slam: The Bone Eater's Well stops working for three years after the final battle leaving Kagome "trapped" in her own time, only to work one last time to let her return to Inuyasha.
  • Portal to the Past: The Bone Eater's Well.
  • Posthumous Character: Midoriko
  • Power at a Price: Sesshomaru's quest for power results in the loss of his arm and, later, the death of Rin (again). He achieves his true potential only thanks to this and the death of Kagura; the latter moves him to feel compassion for others and the former forces him to understand the irreplaceable value of life and the role that fear and sorrow must play in a warrior's life.
  • Power Dyes Your Hair: Inuyasha's hair turns black when he turns human. Of course, the disappearance of his doggy ears is a much bigger marker.
  • Power Floats: Sesshoumaru and Naraku.
  • Power Glows
  • Power Incontinence: The Wind Tunnel it's like a miniature black hole in the palm of the bearer that sucks everything in front of it unless it's sealed by special prayer beads. Eventually, it will grow big enough to break the seal and consume the bearer and everything around him.
  • The Power of Friendship: Tessaiga is fueled by this it seems: Inuyasha says he will protect Kagome, Tessaiga transforms for the first time. He protects Miroku, it unleashes the Wind Scar for the first time. Prefers to protect his friends instead of getting a new technique, he gets the Kongousouha. Says he won't let Naraku keep hurting Miroku and Sango, he makes the Meidou Zangetsuha his.
  • Power of the Void: The Wind Tunnel and Meidou Zangetsuha.
  • Power Parasite: Naraku and Moryomaru.
  • Precision-Guided Boomerang: Sango's Hiraikotsu.
  • Precocious Crush: Koharu on Miroku.
  • Psycho for Hire: The Band of Seven
  • Psychotic Smirk: Naraku is fond of this..
  • Pulling Themselves Together: Youkai with a Shikon shard can do this infinitely. And so can Naraku.
  • Puppeteer Parasite: A salamander youkai had a whole village of women controlled by making them ingest its eggs.
  • Puppy-Dog Eyes
  • Put on a Bus: Kouga after Naraku stole his shards and is never seen again. He appears briefly in the anime epilogue.
  • The Quest: Travel through Japan to find all the Shikon shards and destroy Naraku.
  • Quirky Miniboss Squad: A number of these, including The Band of Seven, and Kanna and Kagura, sometimes with Kohaku, Hakudoshi, and / or Akago.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: Inuyasha's group, especially for the setting and time period. Let's see, an outcast violent hanyou, a cursed lecherous monk, a broken female youkai exterminator, a bratty kitsune, a nekomata, and a weird clothed girl with miko powers she doesn't really know how to use.
  • Rain of Blood: This happens when Inuyasha attacked a group of bandits while in his youkai form.
  • Razor Floss: Yura of the Hair.
  • Razor Sharp Hand: A lot of youkais, mainly Inuyasha and Sesshomaru.
  • Razor Wind: Kagura's 'Dance of Blades' is, of course, with blades made of air.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Any given youkai is potentially much older than they appear, and this can possibly extend to their half-breed offspring as well. Some specific cases:
    • Sesshoumaru confirms that Bokusenou is a two-thousand year old youkai magnolia tree.
    • Kirara, being a nekomata, falls under this as well; the anime even implies that she was Midoriko's companion.
    • Inuyasha himself is a cipher - the third movie establishes him as about 200 years old, not counting his fifty-year-stasis, but the movies are not considered canon to the series - but even if he was just a teenager when Kikyo put him on ice, Sesshomaru's appearance has not changed even slightly during the fifty years that Inuyasha was sealed. (And the same movie that gives Inuyasha's age as 200 shows Sesshoumaru looking only very slightly younger when Inuyasha was born, two hundred fifty years before the action of the series.) By extension, we may assume that Inu no Taisho and Sesshoumaru's mother age at a similar rate.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: When the eyes of Sesshoumaru and Inuyasha turn red it means they're going to transform into a giant dog and full demon respectively. Either way you should be running... fast.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Inuyasha and Sesshomaru have this relationship going big time. Inuyasha and Miroku as well. Also, Jaken and Sesshoumaru as well.
  • Redemption Earns Life: Kohaku
  • Redemption Equals Death: Most notably, Kikyou. Also, Kagura, who sacrifices everything to save Kohaku only to be killed by Naraku shortly afterwards.
  • Reforged Blade:
    • After Tessaiga broke, Totosai reforged it with Inuyasha's own fang, which made the sword heavier. According to Totosai it means that Inuyasha now has to rely in his own strength instead of his father's.
    • Tenseiga is also reforged in order to activate Meidou Zangetsuha, triggered by Sesshoumaru's emotionally bruised heart because of Kagura rather than the blade breaking. Later on in the manga, Tenseiga does break in battle but reforges itself.
  • Reincarnation: Kagome / Kikyo
  • Reincarnation Romance
  • Religion is Magic
  • Restraining Bolt: Tessaiga prevents Inuyasha from becoming full demon and losing his mind in the process.
  • Resurrected for a Job: Kikyou was resurrected to go hunting for shikon shards for Urasue but she killed Urasue instead.
  • Resurrected Romance: Kikyo and Inuyasha.
  • Revenge: The reason why most of the characters hunt for Naraku.
  • Revive Kills Zombie: More like "Killing 'Zombies' Revives". Tenseiga has the ability to cut the undead and the spirits from the underworld. By slaying the spirits that come to collect the soul of a dead person it revives said person.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: Kirara. Until she transforms that is.
  • Rivals Teamup: Inuyasha/Sesshoumaru, Inuyasha/Kouga and Kagome/Kikyo, all to destroy Naraku.
  • Romantic False Lead: Kuranosuke Takeda, a young nobleman who proposes marriage to Sango.
  • Roof Hopping: There goes Inuyasha now, look at him go; boing boing boing. Heck, he roof hops without roofs, somehow managing to double jump his way across the country side, way above the height of most roofs. To quote Kagome's friends, "Kagome's boyfriend runs like he's flying."
  • Rope Bridge: Jaken and Rin are confronted by a villain in the middle of a rope bridge. In a subversion, the bridge breaks because Jaken's attempt to defend himself and Rin relies on fire which burns the ropes and breaks the bridge causing all three of them to plunge into the gorge below.
  • Running Gag:
    • "Inuyasha.... SIT!". Subverted more than once in the OVAs. In the 2nd, the command forces Inuyasha out of the path of Kaguya's attack. In the 3rd, just when it seems no force in the world can get Sou'unga to release him, he gets Sat with so much force that the beads explode!
    • "Would you like to bear my children?"
    • Myouga always makes his appearance known by sucking blood off Inuyasha's nose and getting squashed for it.

     S-Z 

  • Sadistic Choice: Kill an innocent little girl or the person you love the most will die. So, what are you going to choose Sango?
  • Sailor Fuku
  • San Dimas Time: Why Kagome misses so much school while she's having her adventures in the past. A result of the series' Portal to the Past.
  • Say My Name: Behold Adult Swim's view on the matter.
  • Scarily Competent Tracker: Inuyasha and Sesshoumaru with their heightened sense of smell. Jaken may also be this as, no matter how often Sesshoumaru leaves Jaken behind, Jaken always finds him again. How, is anyone's guess.
  • Scars Are Forever:
    • Sango has a big scar on her back where Kohaku stabbed her.
    • No matter his form, Naraku has a giant spider-shaped scar permanently on his back. In one episode he cuts off the flesh of his back to remove the scar only for the scar to immediately grow back in place.
  • Schizo Tech: Ginkotsu from the Band of Seven, a cyborg/tank in Feudal Japan.
  • School Uniforms are the New Black: Kagome frequently strolls around in modern-day school outfit in feudal Japan.
  • Screw Destiny: One big theme in the series. Specially in the last battle which is against the Shikon no Tama itself.
  • Screw You, Elves!: Inuyasha delivers a rather impressive one to Sesshomaru; after the latter spends two or three episodes going off on how humans and half-demons are worthless, Inu not only slices Sesshomaru's arm off, but he also mocks Sesshomaru on how a mere half-demon got to inherit the Tessaiga.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can:
    • The youkai Midoriko fought, the ancient composite demon inside the Shikon no Tama.
    • The Inu no Taisho and Kikyou have a fondness of just sealing their enemies instead of killing them.
  • Sealed Evil in a Duel: Turns out the Shikon no Tama is really a container for an eternal struggle between a powerful Miko and a composite demon.
  • Second Love:
    • Inuyasha's first love was Kikyou, but he ends up with Kagome.
    • In the anime, Koga initially chases after Kagome but ends up with Ayame.
  • Secret Keeper:
    • Kagome's family.
    • Toutousai. He knew from the start the truth about not only Tessaiga and Tenseiga, but Bakusaiga too.
  • Secret Test of Character: At least half the time when Inu Yasha gains a new ability, and even more often whenever Kikyou gets within eyeshot of Kagome. And let's not forget Sango and Miroku when the former was getting Hiraikotsu repaired. Sesshoumaru's entire journey through the manga turns out to have been this, a test he finally passes when he obtains Bakusaiga.
  • Selective Obliviousness: Inuyasha.
  • Self Guarding Phlebotinum: The sword Tessaiga has a barrier around it that prevents demons from touching it. Humans and half-demons can touch it without pain, however.
  • Self-Made Orphan: Kohaku.
  • Selfless Wish: Subverted in the backstory, where Naraku expects Kikyo to use the Jewel of Four Souls to save her life (she takes it with her into the afterlife instead). This sets up the ending, where Kagome and Inuyasha are trapped in the Jewel. Like Kikyo before her, Kagome doesn't make the selfish wish, but wished for the Jewel to cease to exist. She and Inuyasha get home safely anyway.
  • Sensible Heroes, Skimpy Villains: While the two female heroes dress modestly, first two villainess Mistress Centipede and Yura dressed rather scantily.
  • Sentient Phlebotinum: The Shikon no Tama.
  • Shameful Strip: Kagome is knocked unconscious by the villain-of-the-week and wakes up naked in a big cooking pot. From the time Inu-Yasha rescues her until she retrieves her clothes, she wears his fire-rat-hair kimono.
  • Shapeshifter Default Form: Even though we know Naraku can take any form since that's the way he tricked Inuyasha, Kikyo and Miroku's grandfather, once he took Kagewaki Hitomi's identity he stayed with that appearance for the rest of the series.
  • Shape Shifter Mashup: Naraku and Moryomaru.
  • She Is Not My Girlfriend: "She's a shard detector!"
  • She Will Come for Me: Kagome while inside the Shikon no Tama: "Inuyasha will come... I believe in him."
  • Ship Sinking: Both the anime and manga end with Kagome and Inuyasha as (finally) a clear Official Couple. Hasn't stopped the fans one bit.
  • Shipper on Deck: Kagome, who tries to get Miroku and Sango together at times. Miroku, Sango and Shippo to InuYasha and Kagome. In Chapter 343 (animated in Episode 167), Rin is quite up-beat and happy upon realising that Kagura is in love with Sesshoumaru, to the extent where that realisation cures her fear of Kagura (earned as a result of Kagura having once kidnapped her on Naraku's orders).
  • Shock Collar: Inu Yasha has a collar of enchanted prayer beads (or rosary) designed to make him hit the ground whenever Kagome says "Osuwari" or "Sit" / "Sit, boy". Kagome is an easily pissed off Tsundere Type B. Bad day for Inu Yasha.
  • Shrines and Temples: Kagome lives in a Shrine.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!:
    • In "Hitomiko's Barrier"
    Naraku: Blah, blah, blah your soul will be corrupted. Blah, blah, blah.
    Kagome: You are rather talkative!
    • In the last battle:
    Naraku: If you kill me, my shouki-stained body will rain upon the village.
    Sesshoumaru: So what? Bakusaiga!
  • Sibling Rivalry: It's a ding-dong battle with Inuyasha and his older brother Sesshoumaru who has daddy issues. It eventually gets resolved but not before it descends into a temporary period of Cain and Abel. Lampshaded in the manga itself when Inuyasha complains about two fighting brothers causing trouble for everyone and realises his True Companions are thinking he's talking about himself and Sesshoumaru. When he claims it's all Sesshoumaru's fault, Miroku observes that's exactly what a troublemaker would say.
  • Sick Episode:
    • Actually two of them, while Kagome is sick with a severe cold.
    • Also, another episode involved Jaken being poisoned and Rin having to find a cure.
    • The Jinenji story is borne from Inuyasha and Kagome searching for a cure for Kirara, laid up after biting Naraku.
  • Sideways Smile: Sesshoumaru sports a smile that goes from ear to ear and keeps growing as he transforms into his true form.
  • Simple Staff: Miroku's shakujo.
  • Sinister Scythe: Kohaku's kusarigama.
  • Sins of Our Fathers: Miroku inherited the Wind Tunnel because his grandfather wanted to destroy Naraku.
  • Situational Sword: Tenseiga has the power to protect Sesshoumaru from death - but it only kicks in if Sesshoumaru sustains an injury that might potentially kill him without that protection. It's also incapable of killing the living, but turns out to be capable of killing spirits.
  • Sizeshifter: Kirara.
  • Slipknot Ponytail: In the final battle, Sango's hair falls down when she and Kirara are bathed in Naraku's miasma and it eats away her hair tie.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Jaken tries so, so hard to convince people to pay him the respect he believes he's due. It almost never works.
    Kaede: Little youkai, will you be staying here too?
    Jaken: That's Jaken-sama to you!
    Rin: You sure talk big...
    Sango: ... for such a little body.
  • Sneeze Cut
  • So Last Season: Inuyasha's constant upgrades to Tessaiga generally quickly diminish in usefulness.
  • Soul-Cutting Blade: Tenseiga.
  • Soulless Shell: Moryomaru.
  • Spell My Name with an S: Due to confusion regarding the small "tsu" character (which emphasizes the consonant that follows it), the official manga translation printed the name of Inuyasha's sword as "Tetsusaiga" instead of "Tessaiga." The error was perpetuated in the official subtitles and English dub (albeit pronounced as "Tetsaiga"), and the fandom continues to argue over which spelling is more correct. (For comparison, Sesshoumaru's name also contains the small "tsu," but is never romanized as "Setsushoumaru.")
  • Sphere of Destruction: Meidou Zangetsuha's perfect initial form.
  • Spiritual Successor: Kamisama Kiss has a lot in common with this series. Both plots revolve around an ordinary teenage girl being given control over a supernatural Jerk Ass with a temper on a short fuse, who is subsequently forced to help and protect her. Tomoe, the male lead, looks almost exactly like an older and mature version of Inuyasha and their respective personalities are very similar to boot. Nanami, the female lead, also has most of Kagome's personality traits.
  • Split Personality:
    • Suikotsu from the Band of Seven. One personality is a kind and gentle doctor; the other one is a bloodlust killer.
    • Inuyasha himself, at times.
  • Spoiled Brat: Jaken seems to think of Rin as this, though it's hard to consider Sesshoumaru as even being capable of spoiling anyone.
  • Spoiler Opening:
    • The first opening sequence featured Shippo, Miroku, and Sango, long before any of them appeared.
    • Not just the opening, but the first ending as well. The first ending focused on the main three female characters, Kagome, Kikyo and Sango. The problem is that Sango doesn't enter the story until episode 24, after the show has already moved to the second ending.
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad: The Band of Seven are accused of this, seeing how their quirkiness and competence is far more memorable, so much, that you forget Naraku is the real Big Bad
  • Squeaky Eyes
  • Stable Time Loop: Implicitly the case with the Cursed Noh Mask. Kagome meets it in the present day, and brings its shard back to the past to complete the Shikon Jewel... meaning that the original shard is still in the past, where it will become the Noh Mask, which Kagome will bring to the past, etc.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: Inuyasha and Kikyou.
  • The Starscream: Hakudoushi, also the baby and Mouryoumaru. All three tried to take over from Naraku by betraying and defeating him.
  • Status Quo Is God: Sort of. Just remove the 540 chapters of filler. Joking aside, there was a ton of character development, but it just took its sweet time, and many times it felt like the story wasn't moving. Other parts didn't seem to add much, for example, considering how they both basically ended up disappearing by the end of the manga, and didn't really have much of a serious impact on the plot after their initial appearances, Takahashi could have probably ignored Houjo and killed off Koga after their first stories and not really changed the story notably. Hell, killing off Koga would have made a lot more sense than sparing him and it would have removed what is arguably Kagome's biggest scrappy moment in the series (which even she realizes was her fault).
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Happens sometimes. One example is when Byakuya is messing with Inuyasha's group and they don't even know he's in the area. He decides to leave while he's ahead and suddenly discovers Sesshoumaru looming out of nowhere behind him.
  • Stepford Smiler: Miroku tends to hide his troubles and worries with a smile and a grope.
  • The Stoic: Inuyasha at times because he's a brood machine. Although Sesshoumaru's stoicism is somewhat exaggerated by the fanbase, he's still one of the most stoic of any manga or anime characters and is certainly the most stoic of this manga's cast. He is not unemotional, however, and there are plenty of occasions where he proves that he's actually Not So Stoic after all.
  • Storm of Blades: The Kongosoha.
  • Story Breaker Power:
  • Strike Me Down with All of Your Hatred: Naraku urges Sango to kill him while he's holding Rin in his arms. Of course this being Naraku, he's not really going to die since he's only an illusion, but Rin is real and if Sango strikes the girl will die, filling the Shikon no Tama with darkness.
  • Suck Out the Poison: Myoga, being a flea youkai, did this twice. Once when Inuyasha was poisoned during his human night, and once barely saving Kagome, Sango and Miroku, when they almost died from Mukotsu's poison.
  • Summon to Hand: Tessaiga has done this for Inuyasha a few times, although is more Summon to Scabbard.
  • Supernatural Sensitivity
  • Super Power Meltdown: Miroku's black hole palm.
  • Super Toughness: Yokai and Hanyou can take more damage than a human can.
  • Superpowered Evil Side: Suikotsu of the Shichinintai, Inuyasha as a full demon.
  • Suspended Animation: Inuyasha, sealed to a tree by Kikyo's arrow for 50 years.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Byakuya, who comes in after Kagura's death, not only resembles her and acts like her and has similar powers, but plays the same role that she played.
  • The Sweat Drop: An extremely common trope in this manga. Most of the characters experiences this on a regular basis except for the more serious ones.
  • Swirling Dust
  • Swiss-Army Weapon: Tessaiga, oh so very much.
  • Sword Beam: Inuyasha's Wind Scar/Kaze no Kizu. Tessaiga's and especially Tokijin's "sword pressure". Also, Sesshoumaru's anime-only Souryuha.
  • Take Off Your Clothes: When he sees Kagome dressed as a miko, Inuyasha soon asks her to take off the outfit. To which Kagome respond with a rock to the head and calling him a pervert. But Inuyasha doesn't want to see her naked (yet); it's just that with the priestess garb, she looks too much like Kikyo and that makes him uncomfortable.
  • Taken for Granite: Miroku, Sango and Kirara were turned into glass in a filler episode.
  • Taking You with Me:
    • In the anime, Ginkotsu tries this to save Renkotsu from Kouga, but fails to kill the wolf youkai.
    • Miroku also decides to take Naraku with him with the Wind Tunnel when it's about to consume him. Unfortunately, the Naraku he's trying to kill is only an illusion.
    • Naraku attempts this on Inuyasha and co, as well as Kaede's whole village.
  • Talk to the Fist: In Chapter 518, Sesshoumaru delivers a resounding talk to the sword to Magatsuhi, slicing his head in half during mid-gloat.
    Magatsuhi: Hmpf. It seems that you've put on quite a show for me. However, this is still a borrowed body. I feel neither pain nor...
    Sesshoumaru: [Slice]
  • Talking Is a Free Action: In the manga: "You think you can defeat me with that lightning-fast attack you're doing right now? Fool! I am going to dodge it as soon as I finish explaining what's going on in this battle!"
  • Tame His Anger: Inuyasha, Sesshomaru, and Koga go through this as the series progresses.
  • Tanuki: Hachi.
  • Tareme Eyes: Kagome, Shippo, Kohaku and Miroku. Everyone else is Tsurime Eyes.
  • Team Shot
  • Tear Off Your Face: In one arc, Naraku expels his heart, which takes the form of a naked faceless man, who proceeds to slay a whole bunch of bandits and rip off their faces, looking for a suitable one for him. Without them he's shown to be The Blank.
  • Tears of Blood
  • Technicolor Toxin: Naraku's purple miasma and Sesshomaru's green Dokkaso poison.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Inuyasha and Kagome's early relationship. They spent just as much, if not even more, time, bickering with and insulting one another as they did fighting demons and collecting jewel shards, and by the time of the third episode, Kagome got so fed up with him that she promptly left to go home.
  • Thanatos Gambit: Naraku plans to take Kagome with him and replace the dueling souls inside the Shikon Jewel.
  • That Didn't Happen: Sango goes into complete denial after declaring that she prefers to die with Miroku than leave him and save herself: "Did I say something? What did I say?"
  • Theme Naming:
    • Kikyo, Kaede, Kagome, Kagura, Kanna...
    • Additionally, the three named characters from the youkai exterminators' village (Sango, Kohaku, and Kirara) all have names referring to semi-precious stones (coral, amber, and mica respectively).
    • The "army of seven" undead characters have all names ending ith "kotsu" for bone.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill:
    • Using the Wind Scar on an ordinary cockroach.
    • Attempted by Byakuya against Sesshomaru in chapter 523. It doesn't work.
    Byakuya: [Summons a swarm of demons]
    Sesshomaru: You can't stop me with dozens of these demons.
    Byakuya: Oh, I know that. That's why I've summoned thousands of them.
    Sesshomaru: [Easily tears them apart]
    Byakuya: Maybe I should have gone for millions...
  • They Do: In the Grand Finale, Inuyasha and Kagome eventually become the Official Couple and share a True Love's Kiss - although the kiss only occurs in the anime.
  • This Is Unforgivable
  • Those Two Bad Guys: Hiten and Manten
  • Those Two Guys: Ginta and Hakkaku.
  • Time Travel
  • Time Travel Romance: Between Kagome and Inuyasha.
  • Time Travelers Are Spies: Kagome was suspected to be one when she first arrived at Kaede’s village.
  • Timey-Wimey Ball: Not a big problem, since the "fighting bad guys" matter more than the time traveling, but for example, Kagome finds a jewel shard in the present. So that means it's also back in the Sengoku period, meaning the Shikon no Tama eventually comes up to complete plus one extra shard stuck in a tree somewhere. Souls also seem to transcend time in that Kikyo can't be reborn with her soul because it's already been reincarnated in someone else — someone else from the far future who hasn't been born yet, even if she happens to have will have travelled back in time.
  • Token Human: Rin is the only human in Sesshomaru's entourage until Kohaku starts traveling with him as well.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Kagome does manage to catch up and become a true Action Girl. She also develops from barely being able to fire a bow to making shots that are borderline impossible for trained archers in the real world.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Inuyasha, Sesshoumaru, Kouga, and Kagura all experience this at varying speeds and to varying degrees.
  • Toplessness from the Back: All main female characters. Subverted by Sango and Kagura since it's done to show the large scars they have on their backs.
  • Trapped in the Past: In the end, it seems that Kagome can't use the well but that's okay because she'd rather be in the past with Inuyasha.
  • Traumatic Superpower Awakening: After first being sent to the past, Kagome first becomes aware of the Shikon jewel inside her when attacked by a demon. Though the jewel is expelled, this incident results in her learning of her other latent powers.
  • Triang Relations: The Inuyasha/Kagome/Kikyo Triangle is closest to a Type 7 situation, where "Alice" is Inuyasha, and "Bob" and "Charlie" are Kagome and Kikyou who are rivals rather than having no interaction. Inuyasha was effectively engaged to Kikyou when she died and his relationship with Kagome was already well under way when Kikyou came back from the dead (shortly after Kouga's entry into the storyline, Kagome and Inuyasha are a confirmed couple), making him honour-bound to both women and completely unable to choose between them. At one point he even admits to Miroku that he was hoping he could solve the problem by having them both (which would have been relatively common for a man in Japan's past, but modern-girl Kagome was definitely not thrilled by that suggestion). It doesn't help that Kagome is Kikyo reincarnated.
  • Trickster Twins: Miroku and Sango's twins seem to be growing up to be this. With that father it really isn't a surprise.
  • Treacherous Spirit Chase: Inuyasha nearly gets killed by a youkai disguised as his mother who has been dead since he was very young. If Kagome hadn't seen through the illusion and managed to convince Inuyasha that things weren't what they seemed to be, he would have died.
  • Treasure Chest Cavity: Inuyasha's father's grave is inside his pupil, and Kagome kept the Shikon jewel inside her soul.
  • Trouble Follows You Home: In this case Inuyasha. Along with Yura.
  • Troubled, but Cute:
    • Inuyasha is really handsome, but GOD did he have a crappy life!
    • Miroku.
    • Kohaku. Dear GOD, Kohaku.
  • Troubled Fetal Position
  • Unusual Ears: Inuyasha, of course.
    • And Kagome just loves them!
    Kagome Higurashi: [First look at Inuyasha] Dog ears? I think I wanna... Touch 'em! [tweak tweak]
    • And her mom follows suit in the same book. "Are these... real?" [tweak tweak]
    • Jakotsu prefers human Inuyasha, but he does want to keep his dog ears as a trophy.
    • The twins love them too.
  • Unwanted Revival: Kikyo. She had chosen to die to follow Inuyasha and to take the Shikon Jewel with her to the afterlife, but things didn't quite go her way. She was not only reincarnated (along with the Shikon Jewel) but she was revived into a clay body.
  • Urban Fantasy: When the stories are set in the present.
  • Urban Legend Love Life: Miroku.
  • Van Helsing Hate Crimes:
    • The general public's treatment of demons and half-demons often borders on this. Case in point: in Jinenji's debut episode, he is automatically accused of attacking and eating people simply because he's a half-demon, and the villagers only discover the real culprit after they form an angry mob and burn his hut to the ground.
    • Another good example is in episode 162 with Ungai, a monk who is firmly convinced that all demons are bad to the extent that he openly declares Kagome, Miroku, and Sango, a miko, a monk, and a professional demon slayer respectively, hypocrites for even bothering to associate with Inuyasha, Shippo, and Kirara.
  • Victim of the Week: As with other fantasy stories, the main purpose of the villagers are to be either held hostage or brutally killed ten ways to Tuesday in order for the heroes to know just how bad the Monster of the Week is.
  • Victor Gains Loser's Powers: Tessaiga works like this. Any time Tessaiga slays a powerful demon it acquires a new ability.
  • Viewers Are Goldfish:
    • The recaps can get pretty ridiculous; in particular, it sometimes feels like you can't go three episodes without rewatching the scene in which Kikyo kills Inuyasha.
    • The Japanese version also reminds you who every single character outside of the main group is, every episode, by showing their name over the entire lower half of the screen.
    • Even the main group wasn't immune to this, with their names being verbally announced along with onscreen captions during the opening credits.
  • Visible Sigh
  • Vitriolic Best Buds:
    • Inuyasha and Shippo. Sometimes, Inuyasha and Miroku too.
    • Let's not forget Inuyasha and Kouga.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Shippo, Hachi and Naraku.
  • Walking the Earth: The Inu-tachi and their quest. Sesshoumaru as well.
  • Warding Gestures
  • Warring Natures: Inuyasha and every other hanyou.
  • Warrior Therapist: Shishinki plays the role of the evil version of this trope.
  • Weapon Tombstone: The demon slayers' graves are marked like this.
  • Weapons That Suck: Miroku's Wind Tunnel.
  • Weapon Wields You: Sesshomaru takes the fangs of one of Big Bad Naraku's previous incarnations to the swordsmith Kaijinbo, and commissions him to make a sword from it. He complies, but Tokijin, the resulting sword, takes over the will of anyone trying to wield it. In a display of how powerful Sesshomaru is, when he finally grips its hilt, it tries to work its mojo on him, and he No Sells it with barely a glance.
  • Welcome Back, Traitor: The group forgives Sango quite easily for betraying them (and almost getting everyone killed, herself included), after Naraku forces her to choose between doing what he says (steal Inuyasha's sword and give it to him) or letting a loved one (Kohaku) die. Even when she warns them she will do it again, they still forgive her.
  • What a Piece of Junk: Tessaiga when not transformed. Bonus points for Inuyasha saying this trope word for word in the sixth and seventh episodes.
  • What Kind of Lame Power Is Heart, Anyway?:
    • It's explained that the reason Midoriko, the Miko sealed in the Shikon Jewel, was so powerful was because her heart bore a balanced and pure spirit of the "four souls": Aramitama, Nigimitama, Kushimitaka, and Sakamitama. That is, Courage, Friendship, Wisdom and Love.
    • An anime Villain of the Week reveals to Inuyasha and friends that other Shikon Jewels can be made if you can find four souls that strongly embody each of these four characteristics and seal them into a single gem with a Miko as the center. In fact, he attempts to defeat the group because Kagome (the Miko), Inuyasha (Courage), Shippo (Friendship), Miroku (Wisdom) and Sango (Love) are pefect candidates for this process.
    • This is the lesson Sesshoumaru's entire journey through the manga leads him to learn.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?:
    • Everyone kills demons without batting an eye, but they always try not to kill humans no matter how evil or despicable they are. Case in point: in Episode 51, Inuyasha succumbs to his Superpowered Evil Side and personally hunts down and slaughters Gatenmaru's henchmen; despite the fact that they were knowingly serving a demon and that they had personally fed innocent villagers to their demon boss For the Evulz while making him watch, he undergoes a complete My God, What Have I Done? moment as soon as he snaps out of it.
    • Furthermore, the anime will edit the more graphic deaths of humans from the manga while leaving gory demon deaths intact. One example of this is Bankotsu, who is ultimately defeated when Inuyasha cuts him in half, but the anime creates a backstory for Bankotsu's BFS that gave it demonic powers when it had slain 1000 humans and 1000 demons... just so Inuyasha could send back his attack with the Bakuryuuha, something Inuyasha in the manga had realized in frustration that he couldn't do because Bankotsu was a human with no demonic aura. Bankotsu loses the same amount of his body, but the attack allows for an explosion to conceal the damage with rubble, something which can't be achieved with bifurcation.
  • What You Are in the Dark: During Kagome's vision at the end of volume 46 she has to choose whether or not to save Kikyo. The Spirit Advisor points out that Inuyasha would never know if she decided to let Kikyo die. Kagome tells the fake Kikyo off and realizes that she has nothing to be jealous over.
  • When All You Have Is a Hammer: Wind Scar. Doubles as The Worf Barrage.
  • When It All Began: Everything started 50 years ago. Or roughly 550, for Kagome.
  • "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue: The manga epilogue explains what everyone is doing 3 years after the Final Battle. The anime expands it even more.
  • Where It All Began: Naraku and the Shikon no Tama are destroyed at the Well that brought Kagome to the past at the beginning.
  • Whip Sword: Jakotsu's sword.
  • White Hair, Black Heart: Hakudoushi. Sesshoumaru starts off as an example, but his character development eventually subverts it.
  • Will They or Won't They?: Inuyasha/Kagome and, in a lesser extent, Miroku/Sango.
  • Wise Tree: Bokuseno, a two thousand years old magnolia tree. The sheaths of Tessaiga and Tenseiga come from him.
  • Wishplosion: Kagome basically wishes for the shikon no tama to disappear. It's granted.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: When Inuyasha transforms into a full demon he gets incredible strength and resistance, but it's too much power for his half-human body to handle and he'll start to lose his sanity with each transformation until he'll end up being a mindless killing machine that will keep fighting until he destroys everyone around him or gets himself killed.
  • Wolverine Claws: Suikotsu's weapons of choice.
  • Womb Level: The Final Battle happens inside Naraku's body.
  • The Worf Effect: Sesshoumaru is the favored "test target" for Naraku's new abilities/henchmen.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Inuyasha impaled Yura through her chest with his hand, Kouga hit Kagura in the face and Miroku punched Sango (and other girls) to free her from a youkai in her stomach possessing her.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Naraku has no compunctions about doing any horrible thing to anyone, children included. Various other youkai such as Goshinki share his willingness to harm kids; even Kouga has no issue with letting his wolves kill Rin during his first appearance (although his personality is considerably softened thereafter). Kagura may be a notable exception, given that she fails to do anything more serious than kidnapping Rin, and becomes quite protective of Kohaku. Thanks to a multiple personality disorder, Suikotsu flipped between being a gentle doctor who wouldn't hurt a fly to a homicidal maniac that was willing to include children in his body count.
  • Wrecked Weapon:
    • Goshinki broke Tessaiga, breaking with it the seal on Inuyasha's youkai blood.
    • To save Miroku, Sango sacrificed Hiraikotsu spreading in it a very corrosive poison that succeeded in destroying the youkai they were fighting, dissolving the huge boomerang as well.
    • On the other hand, Sesshoumaru didn't give a damn when Tokijin broke.
    • Honouring a promise to Inuyasha, Sesshoumaru sacrifices his claim to both swords by deliberately shattering Tenseiga's blade against Tessaiga to pass on Meidou Zangetsuha. The broken Tenseiga responds to this by guiding the pair out of the danger they're in and promptly reforges itself. Sesshoumaru can't get rid of this blade even when he tries.
  • Yamato Nadeshiko: Sango looks and acts the part... and that doesn't stop her from being an effective Action Girl, since her family's tradition is demon slaying. Also, Kikyo was quite the Yamato Nadeshiko before her death, and after mellowing out and losing her anger at the world, she develops back into a mix of one and the Dark Magical Girl she has become.
  • Yandere: Naraku/Onigumo, the original evil spirit of the Shikon no Tama, and, of course, Jakotsu.
  • Ye Olde Butcherede Englishe: Attempted with Kaede and the villagers in the early episodes of the dub, to fantastically Narmy results. Later on they just stopped trying, only Kaede continues to use it to an extent all through the dub, which is particularly jarring in episodes where Kikyo also appears, since she speaks perfectly normal English.
  • You Are Not Alone: After failing miserably at defeating Naraku and saving her brother plus having just betrayed her new companions, Sango tries to leave the group but the others don't let her telling her that being alone is not a solution and it's best if they all stay together.
    Sango: I was really scared... I was scared that I'd be alone.
  • You Are Worth Hell: Sango prefers to stay and die with a poisoned Miroku than save herself while being chased and cornered by youkai. And in the final battle when the Wind Tunnel is about to consume him, she asks him to take her with him.
  • You Can Barely Stand
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Naraku does this all the time, or at least tries, especially to his detachments.
  • You Must Be Cold: Inuyasha gives his fire-rat haori to Kagome several times throughout the series, most times because it's resistant to fire, poison and sharp things, but a few times because she's actually cold or to protect her modesty.
  • Youkai: Running around everywhere. Inuyasha himself is half dog youkai.
  • Your Days Are Numbered: Miroku, unless he kills Naraku first.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle: Just how many times do the heroes kill Naraku only to find that it wasn't enough to kill him for good or that the Naraku they killed was a puppet?
  • Your Soul Is Mine: Kanna's mirror.
  • Your Universe or Mine?: The past or the present? Kagome chooses to stay in the past with Inuyasha.
  • Zigzag Paper Tassel: The goshinboku tree has a shimenawa around it in the present, but not in the past. Also, one chapter features some monkeys who trick Inuyasha into touching a small stone with a shimenawa around it, which sticks to his hand and becomes a huge boulder.
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Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone ComplexRecap/ToonamiSamurai 7
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Initial DCreator/HuluI's
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Ranma ½Shonen (Demographic)Mermaid Saga
Initial DAnime of the 2000sKikaider
Inu X Boku SSMangaIO
How I Met Your MotherTrope OverdosedInvader Zim
GigantorCreator/[adult swim]Kekkaishi
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KarinParanormal RomanceRosario + Vampire
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Idolmaster: XenoglossiaCreator/Tatsunoko ProductionJeanne d'Arc
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alternative title(s): Inu Yasha; Inuyasha; Inuyasha The Final Act
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