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Anime / Twin Star Exorcists

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Dangerous monsters, called Kegare ("Impurities") attack unsuspecting people every day. Impurities feed off the energy of humans, and so they are attracted to them. Some people just disappear one day, but were actually dragged off into the Impurities' home realm Magano, never to be seen again.

The only thing standing against Impurities are Onmyouji ("Exorcists"), who have the ability to destroy Impurities by exorcising them.

A young boy, Enmado Rokuro, once wanted to become the strongest exorcist, but an unknown event 2 years ago made him give up this dream. Now, he wants nothing to do with Exorcists. That is, until destiny brings him back into the world of Exorcism...

Twin Star Exorcists (Sousei no Onmyouji) is an anime based on the manga of the same name by Yoshiaki Sukeno, which was produced by Studio Pierrot. The anime spans 50 episodes, with the first few being a generally faithful retelling of the first few chapters of the manga. At 20 episodes in, however, the anime starts to take a different path from the manga, with a story original to the anime, which ran all the way until the last episode. The anime began airing on April 6th, 2016. The final episode aired on March 29, 2017.


Not to be confused with Blue Exorcist, another manga from Jump Square about fraternal twins as Exorcists.

Twin Star Exorcists provides examples of:

  • Adaptation Distillation: Funnily enough, some scenes displaying Rokuro's pathetic-ness were removed from the anime, presumably to make him seem more heroic.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The anime starts by showing why Benio fell out of the sky in front of Rokuro, and remains mostly faithful to the first chapter.
  • Adaptational Modesty: The scene where Rokuro accidentally enters the bathroom while Benio is still inside. In the manga, the towel is much smaller and only able to barely cover her front, while here it's wrapped around her body.
  • Adaptational Superpower Change: In the manga, Benio turns out to have been an Impurity in human form. In the anime,Rokuro fills this role, with his origins being Seigen having found him in Magano as a baby. May also count as Adaptation Species Change.
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  • All Your Powers Combined: When Kuranashi absorbs the power of the Heavenly Commanders, he is able to use their powers and techniques.
  • Almighty Janitor: Tsuchimikado Mikage turns out to be this, when he's revealed himself to be Abe no Seimei's avatar, as he can tap into the energy of Abe no Seimei. A subverted version, in that while his rank isn't exactly low, nobody would suspect the assistant to the Head Exorcist actually being the most powerful. In fact, before the reveal, he only has one scene where he fights, and it isn't elaborated on either. He doesn't even have an active role in the plot until the reveal.
    • The one fight scene he's in, as stated above, turns out to be a hint to his status, when Mikage is shown dealing with a very strong Impurity without any effort, while even Tenma, the strongest among the Twelve Heavenly Commanders, is having trouble.
  • Always Identical Twins: Chijiwa and Momochi, the Twin Basara. They have an overall black and white color scheme, with Chijiwa dressed in black while Momochi is dressed in white.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Rokuro lost his left arm 2 years ago in the incident that made him give up being an Exorcist. It's been replaced by a powerful Impurity arm.
  • Arranged Marriage: Like it or not, Rokuro and Benio are told they have to marry each other, as their offspring is said to have enough power to destroy Magano, the home realm of the Impurities.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Arima is the head of the exorcists, and has the power and skill to back it up.
    • The Twelve Heavenly Commanders are this as well, being composed of the twelve most powerful exorcists.
  • Back from the Dead: Arima, who pulls a Big Damn Heroes moment saving Rokuro and Benio.
  • Barrier Warrior: Sae can create barriers strong enough to repel even the strongest Basara's attacks. Being just a child, however, she is unable to do this at will, and only does so when Rokuro and Benio are in extreme danger. Turns out she is part of the Ame no Mihashira, the World Tree which creates the barrier between Magano and the human world.
    • Among the Heavenly Commanders, Kengo can create hexagon-shaped barriers.
  • Battle Couple: Rokuro and Benio. Being forced into an Arranged Marriage, and both being some of the most powerful exorcists in Japan, they're bound to be this.
  • Batman Gambit: Multiple times in the story:
    • Kuranashi is a master of this trope, so much so that many parts of his Evil Plan revolve around this:
      • When he opens Ryukokuten all over Japan, he expected the Exorcists to go into action and expel miasma from affected civilians. He has already cast a spell on the miasma so that it would enter the Exorcists' bodies, letting him control them later.
      • He assaults Arima at the Exorcist headquarters, knowing that even if he fails to kill him, Arima would chase him into Magano. It worked, and Arima falls for his trap.
      • On his grand attack at Kyoto, he expected that the Heavenly Commanders would work on a massive spell that would close the barrier and prevent more Ryukokuten from appearing. Kuranashi already put a barrier on top of his Ryukokuten, causing the spell to backfire and trap all of the Heavenly Commanders in unbreakable force fields, rendering them helpless.
      • The Heavenly Commanders discover he has placed Curse Charms in twelve spots all around the city. They split up to cover each spot, only to discover that initiating the ritual has caused powerful Impurities to spawn in front of them. Fighting the Impurities exhausts the Heavenly Commanders.
      • He appears in front of the Twin Stars specifically to tell them the weakness of the large Impurity destroying the city, expecting they'd send a party to attack it. He's right, but he didn't expect Seigen and Mayura to be the group they'd send.
      • The Heavenly Commanders succeed in performing the above ritual, only that they are completely exhausted by this point. Exhausted enough for Kuranashi to drag them all into Magano.
      • Kuranashi appears in front of the Twin Stars once more, knowing they'd chase him back into Magano. The two are forced to fight him exhausted, without backup, and worse, he has absorbed the power of all the Heavenly Commanders.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Multiple times in the story.
    • Early on, Subaru and Tatara save Benio and Rokuro from being overwhelmed by hundreds of Impurities. This also serves to establish the power of members of the Heavenly Commanders.
    • Later, Rokuro saves Benio from being killed by Kamui, although they don't quite win the battle.
    • After having been thought to be dead,Arima comes back all of a sudden to save Rokuro and Benio from the newly returned Yuuto.
    • Kamui of all people, does this to save Arima in Episode 49. He then mentions that he wasn't out to save him, but for his own personal reasons.
  • Bishōnen Line: The Basara are very powerful Impurities who take on human form. One distinguishing feature, aside from the darker skin, is how their right eye is a deep black with red irises.
    • Kuranashi later reveals that the more energy an Impurity takes from humans, the more human the Impurity's features become, which explains how Basara got their appearance. He takes it a step further when he reveals that after having absorbed enough energy, his own right eye has become normal. Rokuro and Benio are quick to notice this when Kuranashi first takes off his mask.
  • Black-and-White Morality: Abe no Seimei believes in this, after having seen hundreds of years of humanity causing suffering. He's come to believe that all Impurities are evil, and that the only way to eliminate them is to get rid of all free will. Rokuro and Benio argue that morality is not a clear-cut black and white and that no one is perfectly good or perfectly evil, pointing out that even the Basara have managed to be nice people, either to their own kind or to humans.
  • Cain and Abel: Yuuto and Benio. Subverted in that everything Yuuto has done has not actually directly affected Benio, although making Rokuro's life hell makes Benio feel guilty for his actions.
    • In a straigher example, Yuuto and Rokuro. Yuuto was later revealed to be a rather odd child, extremely obsessed with Rokuro, recognizing the latent power hidden within him. He would make the latter's life hell by not only causing the Hiinatsuki Tragedy which drove Rokuro to quit exorcism in the first place, but also directly threatening his friends and family in various ways.
  • Chekhov M.I.A.: Arima, who pulls a Big Damn Heroes moment after having disappeared for nearly ten episodes. In a rare instance of the trope, he really was dead, but got revived.
  • Cherry Blossoms: Cherry blossoms petals appear around Rokuro and Benio in the first opening theme of the anime.
  • The Chosen Many:
    • The Twin Stars, Rokuro and Benio. They are destined to give birth to the Miko, who is said to be powerful enough to deal the final blow against Magano.
    • The Twelve Heavenly Commanders are shown to be this as well, being a select few people deemed worthy enough to wield the twelve powers of Abe no Seimei's shikigami.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Tenma's fight against Kinasa. Kinasa was on the giving end against the Twin Stars when Tenma decides to intervene. Tenma then No Sells all of Kinasa's attacks and defeats him with one swing of his sword... which cuts the mountain behind Kinasa in half.
  • Companion Cube: Chijiwa makes a straw doll that looks just like his brother Momochi, after the latter's death. He just can't accept going on without his brother, that he makes multiple dolls. He's also very used to the dynamic of his brother, where one asks the other questions only for both to already know the answer, which leads to:
  • Consulting Mister Puppet: Most of the time Chijiwa talks to the Momochi dolls.
  • Dance Battler: Benio's attacks all have dance in their names.
  • Darkest Hour: For the Heavenly Commanders, this is when, barring themselves, the Exorcists at Seika Dormitory, and the Twin Stars, every Exorcist in Japan goes missing, compounded by the fact that Arima is most likely dead.
  • Dark Is Evil: Impurities and Basara have dark skin, and are portrayed as evil.
    • Subverted in the case of Suzu, who is introduced killing a man, but as it turns out its because she has a different sense of morality compared to the rest of the Basara. In the end, she doesn't do anything evil, and continues encouraging the Twin Stars, Rokuro in particular, at every turn.
    • Played straight, then subverted in the case of Kamui. He is responsible for the murder of Benio's parents, but as events go on, he eventually comes softer and isn't shown to be doing any evil deeds, especially after Benio's Deal with the Devil with him. By episode 49, He may have made a Heel–Face Turn, since he aids Arima in the final battle. It's ultimately unclear, but it is shown that the reason he's helping turns out to be because Benio was kind to him.
    • Yuuto's first Super Mode is this, as he looks basically like a humanoid looking Impurity.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Tsuchimikado Mikage is dressed in black with dark skin, but he's actually one of the good guys, being the assistant to Arima. This is subverted later on.
    • As mentioned above, Suzu.
  • Dark World: Magano, the homeworld of the Impurities. It's shown to be very much the same with Utsutsu, the human world, even with the same buildings, except that said buildings are now dilapidated and rundown. The place is filled with miasma that would be dangerous to living things. Exorcists are only able to stay in Magano thanks to a thin veil of energy around them, but it's been shown that even Exorcists have a hard time in places with thicker miasma.
    • Magano is separated from Utsutsu by a magical barrier. It's been shown that over time, the barrier has weakened in certain areas, which allows the Impurities to cross over and kidnap humans. The only reason Impurities can't completely cross over is that they can't survive without the Miasma.
    • On the other hand, Exorcists can only get to and from Magano via a spell that opens a Portal Door.
  • Deal with the Devil: Benio asks Kamui to restore her legs, despite the risk that she might be fully consumed and become an Impurity herself.
  • Death World: Magano, the home of the Impurities. It's constantly shrouded in miasma which is deadly to unprotected humans.
  • Divide and Conquer: Kuranashi's attack on the city turns out to be this, coupled with Batman Gambit. He places curse charms in 12 different spots around the city as part of his spell to raise the city into the air. It turns out he expected the Heavenly Commanders to split up, with Impurities spawning in each location. This way, each of the Heavenly Commanders would be too exhausted after their ritual, which lets Kuranashi drag them into Magano.
  • Dramatic Unmask: Kuranashi spends nearly fifteen episodes masked. He finally takes it off in front of Rokuro and Benio, and the first thing the two notice is his completely normal right eye.
  • Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors: Yuuto claims to have created a completely unbreakable force field. Arima uses this to nullify it effortlessly, after which he discusses that with the study of Exorcism being based off each element, each spell can thus be countered by a spell based off its counter element, meaning that a sufficiently knowledgeable and skilled Exorcist can find the kink in any spell, and that no spell is truly unstoppable.
  • Enemy Mine: Kamui teams up with Arima in the final fight against Abe no Seimei.
  • Energy Absorption: The vines Kuranashi has the Heavenly Commanders wrapped up in absorb energy, making it useless for them to try to break out or for the Twin Stars to attempt a rescue.
  • The Evils of Free Will: Abe no Seimei has come to believe this, after witnessing two millenia of evil deeds and wars. For this reason, he's decided to transform the world into a World of Silence.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Abe no Seimei at some point, after witnessing how humanity has not learned much despite the numerous wars that have torn them apart.
  • Fire/Ice Duo: In his fight against Kuranashi, Arima uses charms which give him a weapon with ice powers on one arm, and a weapon with fire powers on the other.
  • Fog of Doom: The miasma inside Magano can be fatal to unprotected humans. Denser miasma can affect even Exorcists. Impurities need the miasma to survive, and thus cannot sustain themselves very long in the human world. Whenever a regular human is exposed to miasma, it stays inside their body for some time and causes ill effects. It has to be expelled by an Exorcist.
    • Whenever Kuranashi opens a Ryukokuten (see Portal Door below), its large enough for the miasma to come seeping in naturally into the human world.
    • It's later revealed that the above was all part of Kuranashi's plan. He weaponises the miasma, by casting a spell on it such that it would enter the bodies of any Exorcist who expelled it from its victims. The miasma would then allow him to control the affected Exorcists. Later on, he uses the same controlled Exorcists to craft him a spell charm that would shield Impurities in a thin veil of miasma, allowing them to stay in the human world.
  • Gag Boobs: Mayura has some pretty big airbags, with Rokuro usually bumping into them.
  • Girly Run: Benio is shown running this way in the first opening.
  • Hijacked by Ganon: Yuuto hijacks Kuranashi's position as Big Bad, absorbing Kuranashi's power and killing him.
  • Lady of War: Subaru Mitejima. She's graceful and retains an air of being upper class, even as she fights.
  • Let's You and Him Fight: By the end of episode 2, Arima sets this up between Rokuro and Benio, mainly so that the two can display just how powerful they are in front of the Exorcists who have gathered. Benio is more than willing to fight, Rokuro is less than.
  • Light Is Not Good: Three in a row:
    • First is Kuranashi, when he absorbs the power of the Heavenly Commanders. He gets a bright white color and calls himself god.
    • Second is Yuuto, having absorbed the character mentioned above, gets this a Super Mode.
    • Third is Abe no Seimei, when he regains his full power.
    • In general this is exemplified by the Yin-Yang symbolism used, where Yin (which is white) represents the Impurities and destructive negative energy while Yang the magic used by the Exorcists and constructive positive energy.
  • Mask of Power: It's implied that the mask Kuranashi dons is one. When Arima manages to damage it in a fight, he mentions that he's sensed Kuranashi becoming weaker. Kuranashi has to create another one later on to replace the damaged one. Eventually, he becomes powerful enough that he no longer needs a mask.
  • Messianic Archetype: The Miko, the prophesied child of the Twin Stars, who will become the most powerful Exorcist in history, and will deal the final blow against Magano.
  • Never Found the Body: The Twelve Heavenly Commanders organize a search party to look for Arima's body in Magano. They never found it, despite happening upon the area where he was defeated.
  • No Body Left Behind: The Impurities and Basara, as they explode upon being defeated.
  • Not a Date: In Episode 10, Subaru has Rokuro and Benio go out together to do some "training" with Subaru's instructions having them change into more elegant clothes and trying to force them to do things like Holding Hands and Romantic Spoonfeeding. It takes Rokuro and Benio a while to realize all this feels more like a date than a training session.
  • Older than They Look: Miku Zeze, one of the Heavenly Commanders. She's actually 56.
  • One-Hit Kill: Rokuro in his very first fight, to display just how powerful he is. The Heavenly Commanders are able to do this to multiple Impurities at a time.
    • Taken to the extreme with Tenma, who one hits Kinasa, one of the more powerful Basara.
  • One-Man Army: Benio, whose first appearance has her fighting a group of Impurities trying to hijack a train.
  • Paper Talisman: The charms that Exorcists use are these. Benio uses several and Rokuro uses only a single jet black charm.
    • Tenma manages to cast a spell that typically needs a talisman without one, supposedly as a show of power.
  • Porn Stash: In Episode 11, Benio finds Rokuro's porn magazines hidden in the back of one of his desk drawers.
  • Portal Door: The only way for Exorcists to get in and out of Magano is by summoning one through a spell.
    • Kuranashi's ability to open Ryukokuten ("Dragon Spot Holes") is this for the Impurities. It's implied that this ability is actually difficult for Impurities to pull this off, and likely that only Basara can create Ryukokuten. Suzu later learns how to perform this, but she says she still hasn't mastered it to the point she can only create one large enough for herself.
  • Really 700 Years Old: All the Basara are implied to be this, as it actually takes quite a while to gather enough power for an Impurity to transform into a Basara. In particular, Kuranashi is at least 600 years old based on a flashback, and Suzu says she's around 1000 years old. This crosses with Older than They Look.
    • Tatara is revealed to be this, as it turns out he's not human.
    • The same goes for Mikage, who is actually Abe no Seimei's avatar.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Chijiwa, when given the chance to take vengeance on Rokuro and Benio. Ever since his brother Momochi's death, his mental state has gotten worse, to the point he's made dolls of his brother and acting as if he's still alive. The second time he fights the Twin Stars he's really mad.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism: Discussed. Abe no Seimei mentions that humanity has not learned it's lesson throughout history, ending in suffering for so many people involved, the negative emotions arising from such suffering then going on to create Impurities. For him, there can never be a world of suffering thanks to The Evils of Free Will. Rokuro and Benio point out that suffering itself is not a bad thing, as it can cause people to grow and be better. Abe no Seimei then points out that letting suffering continue would only mean more Impurities, which makes the effort pointless, and that Rokuro and Benio are not entirely innocent either in their work is to eliminate Impurities.
  • Sole Survivor: Rokuro, in the event 2 years ago known as the Hiinatsuki Tragedy.
  • Taking You with Me: Chijiwa attempts this in his second appearance, when he realizes he's beaten. Rokuro stops him just in time.
  • Technician vs. Performer: In terms of fighting style, Benio is the Technician to Rokuro's Performer. Benio, hailing from a family who's popular for being talented and powerful Exorcists, is popular with the Exorcists due to being extremely skilled at her young age. It's shown in the techniques she uses in battle; she uses multiple charms at once at the start of each fight, and the techniques she uses have complex movements in addition to the high speed. Rokuro, having stopped training as an Exorcist 2 years prior to the start of the series, is unable to use certain spells Benio would consider basic. His main fighting style consists of using his powerful right arm and just punching Impurities to oblivion, but its shown he's much more powerful than Benio from the very first episode, where he takes out a more powerful Impurity Benio was struggling against with one punch.
  • Thanatos Gambit: Arima expected Kuranashi to eventually come and kill him. Arima needs someone to put him in a state of death so that he can activate a spell which would send his soul back to the past, as he wants to learn more about the prophecy of the Twin Stars.
  • Time Travel: Arima explains that this is the reason he has been missing for nearly fifteen episodes. He needed to be put in a near-death state for the spell to work, and so allowed Kuranashi to "kill" him. This let him travel to the past and figure out Abe no Seimei's real plans for the Twin Stars. It's unclear whether it's physical time travel or Intangible Time Travel, since his body was never found.
  • Tron Lines: These appear on the Exorcists' costumes whenever they use charms for enhancing their skills. The curse charm used by the Basara to remain in the human world has these appear on the Basara's body as well.
  • Was Once a Man: Fallen Impurities are humans who have been directly turned into Impurities. This can only be inflicted by more powerful Impurities and Basara, such as Kamui, or Yuuto..
    • Mayura gets hit with this when she is transformed into a Fallen Impurity by Yuuto.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Kamui all but disappears after Episode 19. He comes back in a Big Damn Heroes moment to save Arima in Episode 49 and makes a small appearance in Episode 50.
  • The Worf Effect: Benio suffers this in the first episode. She's shown to be capable of fighting multiple Impurities on her own, until she faces a particularly big one. At that point, she is struggling and comments it might beat her. Rokuro is somewhat annoyed at her heroics, still having hatred about anything to do with exorcism, and decides to step in. He then exorcises it in one punch.
    • Later on, Seigen suffers this in his fight against Yuuto, to the point that he permanently loses his arm. Note that Seigen is one of the Twelve Heavenly Commanders, the group of the strongest Exorcists. Somewhat subverted in that Seigen's true power had yet to be displayed prior to this fight. The Twelve Heavenly Commanders were, however, established to be leagues above Rokuro and Benio, who were previously shown to be more powerful than the average Exorcist.
  • World of Silence: Abe no Seimei's end goal, reasoning that so long as people make evil choices and cause suffering, Impurities will always remain, and which means the suffering would not end.
  • World's Strongest Man: Abe no Seimei, being the most powerful of all Exorcists. He later proves this when he decides to put his plan into action. Arima, the Head of the Exorcist Legion, is said to be no match for him and this is later proven true even after being assisted by Kamui.
    • Yuuto thinks himself to be this when he absorbed Kuranashi's power, and (supposedly) Abe no Seimei's power.. Later on, he is proven wrong by Rokuro, who had grown even more powerful after his hidden power as the Cataclysm King had awakened.
  • World Tree: The Ame no Mihashira, a magical tree planted millenia ago by Abe no Seimei. It maintains the magical barrier that separates Magano from Utsutsu and keeps Impurities from coming in. Kuranashi somehow manages to damage this tree, weakening the barrier, and allowing him to open Ryukokuten all over Japan.
  • Xanatos Gambit: Kuranashi's Evil Plan, combined with a heavy dose of Batman Gambit.
    • He opens Ryukokuten all over Japan and causes an invasion of Impurities and miasma. The invasion wipes out the cities? Good, he's succeeded. The Exorcists manage to close the Ryukokuten? Civilians all across Japan are already afflicted by the miasma. The Exorcists expel the miasma from the civilians? He's already set a spell that will cause the miasma to enter the Exorcist's bodies, which he uses to control them later. Regardless of the outcome, the entirety of the Exorcist Legion is distracted from him implementing the next step in his plans.
    • He stages a grand attack on the Exorcist Headquarters. If the attack succeeds, he can go on to destroy the Ame no Mihashira, which will eliminate the barrier and allow Impurities to leave Magano at will. The Heavenly Commanders have a spell designed to close the Ryukokuten his Impurities are coming in from? He's already cast a spell to cause their efforts to backfire and trap the Heavenly Commanders in an unbreakable force field. The Exorcists somehow manage to close the Ryukokuten? He's already done his job anyway, eliminating Arima and spreading the miasma as mentioned above.
    • His attack on the city. The attack succeeds? The Impurity in the middle of the city absorbs the spell power of thousands of civilians, making him stronger. In addition, he would have defeated the Twin Stars. The Heavenly Commanders make a move to perform a ritual that will bring the city back down to the ground and eliminate his Curse Charms? Already planned for with Impurities spawning at each spot in their ritual. The Heavenly Commanders defeat each Impurity and perform the ritual? All their efforts exhaust them, which lets Kuranashi drag them into Magano and absorb their powers.