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    Makina Hoshimura 

Makina Hoshimura

Voiced by: Nana Akiyama (Japanese), Luci Christian (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/makina_hoshimura_13853.jpg
Makina is the main protagonist and titular "living corpse".
  • Big Damn Heroes: How Ouri first meets Makina in the manga.
  • Big Sister Instinct: Very much so.
  • Cain and Abel: Makina and Hokuto. Turns out that Makina's ancestors are the Cain.
  • Everyone Can See It: Makina and Ouri's feelings for each other. Saki, Itsuki, Takamasa, and Fleshe all either allude to it or point it out outright several times.
  • Guns Akimbo: Makina and several other Shakabane Hime wield their guns this way.
  • Healing Factor: After Keisei's death, due to the curse she acquires because of her attachment to him.
  • Hime Cut: Level bangs, sidelocks, and long in the back.
  • In My Language, That Sounds Like...: 'Makina' means 'machine' in Filipino. Oddly fitting, since the girl's a frickin terminator when she's pissed off.
  • Love Triangle: A rather complicated one, with both romantic and platonic elements. Makina definitely has some romantic feelings for Keisei, but he loves her in a strictly platonic sense, more as a little sister (which makes sense, since he was adopted by her family). Ouri and Keisei of course have a strong mutual bond as brothers, and Ouri shows some signs of a romantic attraction to Makina, particularly later in the series. So as far as strictly romantic feelings go it's a type 5 with Ouri at A, Makina at B, and Keisei at C; however, accounting for platonic feelings makes it more a type 7 early series, moving to type 8 later on as Makina and Ouri's relationship grows. And cue cheesy smile. And this is to say nothing of their dialogue before this one.
  • Maybe Ever After: Despite the cliffhanger ending, the last dialogue between Ouri and Makina before the cliffhanger scene implies this:
    Ouri: Brother once told me that we're not here for the dead. A monk's duty is to lessen the pain for those who the dead leave behind. I know I'm still new at this, but I can help you. So please, let me.
    Makina: Monks aren't here for the dead.
    Ouri: You're not dead. That's why you fight, isn't it? To stay alive. That's not something a dead person does.
  • More Dakka: Prefers MAC-11 machine pistols.
  • Shoo the Dog: Makina attempts to not get Ouri involved in her missions at first.
  • The Undead: She's a "living corpse".
  • Vapor Wear: Though it is confirmed late in the series that Makina does wear a bra, we never see any sign of panties. If she does wear anything under that skirt, it has to be a thong.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Makina has purple hair.
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    Ouri Kagami 

Ouri Kagami

Voiced by: Tatsuya Hasome (Japanese), Aaron Dismuke (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ouri_kagami_15502.jpg
A normal high school boy who was raised at Keisei Tagami's temple.
  • Accidental Pervert: A couple of times. Surprisingly, little to no attention is paid to him doing this.
  • And Then John Was a Zombie: To be more exact, a son of a zombie.
  • Blood Brothers: Ouri and Keisei become some sort of this, because to contract a Shikabane, the Contractor must have his own blood written in his palm by his Shikabane. This contract is transferable. Before Keisei died, he transferred the glowing red seal of Makina to Ouri.
  • Creepy Child: Ouri was like this, and also a death-obsessed boy. He got better...maybe.
  • Dangerous 16th Birthday: Ouri's 16th birthday is when he has to take over for Keisei after the latter's death.
  • 11th-Hour Superpower: Ouri's Zadan. It's because he's born from a Shikabane.
  • Everyone Can See It: Makina and Ouri's feelings for each other. Saki, Itsuki, Takamasa, and Fleshe all either allude to it or point it out outright several times.
  • Half-Human Hybrid: Ouri is revealed in Kuro to have been born when a heavily pregnant woman was killed by a hit and run accident, but her obsession/regret over having never held her child allowed her to come back as a Shikabane, the child surviving in her womb and being born as Ouri. Several characters wonder if this makes him human, Shikabane, or something else entirely — including Ouri himself.
  • Happily Adopted: He was found and adopted by Keisei.
  • I Love the Dead: When you consider that Makina is basically a living corpse.
  • Love Triangle: A rather complicated one, with both romantic and platonic elements. Makina definitely has some romantic feelings for Keisei, but he loves her in a strictly platonic sense, more as a little sister (which makes sense, since he was adopted by her family). Ouri and Keisei of course have a strong mutual bond as brothers, and Ouri shows some signs of a romantic attraction to Makina, particularly later in the series. So as far as strictly romantic feelings go it's a type 5 with Ouri at A, Makina at B, and Keisei at C; however, accounting for platonic feelings makes it more a type 7 early series, moving to type 8 later on as Makina and Ouri's relationship grows.
  • Maybe Ever After: Despite the cliffhanger ending, the last dialogue between Ouri and Makina before the cliffhanger scene implies this:
    Ouri: Brother once told me that we're not here for the dead. A monk's duty is to lessen the pain for those who the dead leave behind. I know I'm still new at this, but I can help you. So please, let me.
    Makina: Monks aren't here for the dead.
    Ouri: You're not dead. That's why you fight, isn't it? To stay alive. That's not something a dead person does.
  • Non-Action Guy: At least until he begins training to become a contracted monk.
  • Parental Abandonment: He's an orphan.

    Keisei Tagami 

Keisei Tagami

Voiced by: Keiji Fujiwara (Japanese), J. Michael Tatum (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/keisei_tagami_15503.jpg
Keisei Tagami was a Buddhist priest under the anti-corpse organization known as the Kōugon Sect.
  • Blood Brothers: Ouri and Keisei become some sort of this, because to contract a Shikabane, the Contractor must have his own blood written in his palm by his Shikabane. This contract is transferable. Before Keisei died, he transferred the glowing red seal of Makina to Ouri.
  • Dirty Old Monk: He can be seen offering (or forcing upon) Ouri sexual posters or skin mags.
  • Love Triangle: A rather complicated one, with both romantic and platonic elements. Makina definitely has some romantic feelings for Keisei, but he loves her in a strictly platonic sense, more as a little sister (which makes sense, since he was adopted by her family). Ouri and Keisei of course have a strong mutual bond as brothers, and Ouri shows some signs of a romantic attraction to Makina, particularly later in the series. So as far as strictly romantic feelings go it's a type 5 with Ouri at A, Makina at B, and Keisei at C; however, accounting for platonic feelings makes it more a type 7 early series, moving to type 8 later on as Makina and Ouri's relationship grows.
  • Otaku: He's one of these.

Contracted Monks

    In General 
  • Good Shepherd: The monks are the ones contracting Shakabane Hime and fighting shakabane, thus keeping the public at large safe from the later.
  • Training from Hell: All Contracted Monks must undergo this.

    Rika Aragami 

Rika Aragami

Voiced by: Saeko Chiba (Japanese), Cynthia Cranz (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/rika_aragami_22753.jpg
Rika Aragami is the only female Contracted Monk.
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    Takamasa Sogi 

Takamasa Sogi

Voiced by: Tokuyoshi Kawashima (Japanese), Joel McDonald (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/sougi_takamasa_15861.jpg
The Contracted Monk of Itsuki Yamagami.
  • I Love the Dead: When you consider that Itsuki is basically a living corpse.
  • The Stoic: After his inability to kill his buddy-turned-shikabane caused the death of a lot of people.

    Sadahiro Mibu 

Sadahiro Mibu

Voiced by: Junichi Suwabe (Japanese), Eric Vale (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/sadahiro_mibu_16059.jpg
The Contracted Monk of Akira Tōoka.

    Shuji Isaki 

Shuji Isaki

Voiced by: Tomokazu Sugita (Japanese), Mike McFarland (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/shuuji_isaki_16062.jpg
The Contracted Monk of Minai Ruo.

    Sougen Takamine 

Sougen Takamine

Voiced by: Hidenori Nakamura (Japanese), Kent Williams (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/sougen_takamine_16057.jpg
The Contracted Monk of Kamika Tomoroki and the former mentor of Keisei Tagami.

    Kanechika Umehara 

Kanechika Umehara

Voiced by: Masaki Terasoma (Japanese), Christopher Bevins (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/kanechika_umehara_22920.jpg
The only Contracted Monk that has two Shikabane Hime.
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Shikabane Hime

    In General 
  • Deus ex Machina: The Shikabane Hime restore their connection to their contracted monks through The Power of Friendship.
  • Gender-Restricted Ability: Only young women within a certain age range can become Shikabane Hime.
  • Healing Factor: All the Shikabane and Shikabane Hime to some degree.
  • Magical Girl Warrior: The Shikabane Hime are a rather darker variant.
  • 108: Shikabane Hime must kill 108 Shikabane, the traitor monk uses 108 Shikabane to fuel his dark power.
  • Our Zombies Are Different: Shikabane are the supernaturally powerful undead forms of people who die harboring intense regrets or obsessions, which enable them to possess their bodies and return to a pseudo-life.
  • Superpowered Evil Side: While all Shikabane Hime has it, most only assume it once, never go back, and have to be put down before they go an inevitable rampage. Itsuki is notable in that she assumes it whenever her Contracted Priest gets too heavily wounded or when her energy supply runs low, but she goes back to normal afterwards. We never get to clearly see it, but we do know that she gains snakelike eyes and fangs at the very least, and it seems that when in full gear she turns into a giant naga.
  • Super Soldier: The Kougonshuu is basically exploiting the Shikabane Hime for their ability to fight Shikabane. The traitor monk disagrees with this practice.
  • Synchronisation: A Shikabane Hime can heal most wounds very quickly if her Contracted Monk is nearby, but the wounds pass to the monk. Conversely, if a Contracted Monk is severely wounded it causes great trauma for his Shikabane Hime, and if he is killed then usually the Shikabane Hime, being cut off from his Rune, dies as well.
  • The Undead: All Shikabane Hime are basically living corpses.

    Saki Amase 

Saki Amase

Voiced by: Mika Kikuchi (Japanese), Monica Rial (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/saki_amase_22754.jpg
Rika's partnered Shikabane Hime.

    Itsuki Yamagami 

Itsuki Yamagami

Voiced by: Chise Nakamura (Japanese), Cherami Leigh (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/itsuki_yamagami_15862.jpg
Takamasa's Shikabane Hime.

    Akira Tōoka 

Akira Tōoka

Voiced by: Aoi Yuuki (Japanese), Anastasia Muñoz (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/akira_touoka_16058.jpg
Sadahiro's cynical Shikabane Hime.

    Minai Ruo 

Minai Ruo

Voiced by: Yuka Hirata (Japanese), Colleen Clinkenbeard (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/minai_ruo_15269.jpg
Isaki's Shikabane Hime.
  • Action Girl: Like all other Shikabane Hime.
  • Bare-Fisted Monk: Minai's perfered fighting style is unarmed with only her spiked gauntlets.
  • Biker Babe: Minai is shown on her motorcycle briefly in one episode.
  • Domestic Abuse: Her boyfriend beat her and she eventually snapped and killed him then committed suicide.
  • Driven to Suicide: See Domestic Abuse.
  • Fingerless Gloves
  • Good Old Fisticuffs: In the DVD bonus episode, Minai says she knows some boxing, which is what she uses to fight Shikabane.
  • Meaningful Name: Minai's name is spelled with the kanji 水薙生, with this one 薙 meaning "mow down (the enemy)" and this one 生 meaning "life" or "birth".
  • Mercy Kill: Despite Sadahiro's offer to help her transferring her bond to Ouri, she ultimately allowed herself to be terminated.
  • Stripperific

    Kamika Todoroki 

Kamika Todoroki

Voiced by: Yui Horie (Japanese), Terri Doty (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/kamika_todoroki_16056.jpg
Takamine's Shikabane Hime.

    Flesh Backbone 

Flesh Backbone

Voiced by: Aya Endo (Japanese), Alexis Tipton (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/flesh_backbone_22921.jpg
One of Umehara's Shikabane Hime.
  • Action Girl: Like all other Shikabane Hime.
  • A Date with Rosie Palms: Flesh lent some hentai Doujinshi manga be her special friends for tonight.
  • Animal-Eared Headband: Cat-eared headband.
  • Boobs of Steel: Mostly inverted as she's one of the weaker fighters compared to Makina and Kamika who both have modestly sized assets.
  • Cosplay Otaku Girl: Just look at her.
  • Eagleland: Freshe is the mixed type. Having apparently died in a plane crash on her way to Harajuku, she is a blonde, freckled, tall, unbelievably boorish and obnoxious, hyperactive, hypersexualized (wearing a ridiculously skimpy mockery of traditional Japanese attire with no bra to hold her gargantuan breasts and no panties, a fact which she is insistent on making everyone aware of one way or another), and has learned everything she knows about Japan strictly from anime (her weapon, an oversized shuriken, is remarked upon as something that no Japanese in real life would ever consider using). While she is very friendly and good natured, she is simply too much an idiot for most people to suffer most of the time.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": Flesh/Freshe
  • Stripperific

Shikabane

    In General 
  • Healing Factor: All the Shikabane and Shikabane Hime to some degree.
  • One-Winged Angel: All Shikabane have two forms; an (almost) perfectly human-like one and a far more monstrous one that they typically need to turn into to make full use of their powers, though they are often still supernaturally powerful even in human form. Shikabane Hime are implied to be locked into their human forms as part of the ritual that turns them from Shikabane into Shikabane Hime.
  • Our Zombies Are Different: Shikabane are the supernaturally powerful undead forms of people who die harboring intense regrets or obsessions, which enable them to possess their bodies and return to a pseudo-life.

    Hagino 

Hagino

Voiced by: Kazuya Nakai (Japanese), Z. Charles Bolton (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/hagino_22591.jpg
A vampire like Shikabane who kidnaps women and kills them in groups.

    Kun Osaki 

Kun Osaki

Voiced by: Mayumi Iizuka (Japanese), Brina Palencia (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/kun_osaki_22651.jpg
A J-pop star who died of heart disease.

    Tomoharu Kishibe 

Tomoharu Kishibe

Voiced by: Anri Katsu (Japanese), Scott Freeman (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/tomoharu_kishibe_22944.jpg
Initially a normal teenage boy and a friend of Takamasa and Itsuki.
  • The Killjoy: Quite literally. He uses his Psychic Powers to control car engines to kill teens who like to drive fast and their spectators.
  • Psychic Powers: He has the ability to control the engines of cars.

Seven Stars

The Seven Stars is a group of seven Shikabane who worked together for a common goal.

    Hokuto 

Hokuto

Voiced by: Chika Fujimura (Japanese), Brina Palencia (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/hokuto_15864.jpg
The 7th star of the group.

    Isaka 

Isaka

Voiced by: Takaya Hashi (Japanese), T.A. Taylor (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/isaka_shikabane_hime_16063.jpg
The 3rd star of the group.

    Hazama 

Hazama

Voiced by: Toru Okawa (Japanese), Christopher Sabat (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/hazama_22843.jpg
The 1st star of the group.

    Kowaku 

Kowaku

Voiced by: Yuki Hayashi (Japanese), Bob Carter (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/kowaku_22842.jpg
The 4th star of the group.

    Ena 

Ena

Voiced by: Michi Niino (Japanese), Todd Haberkorn (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ena_shikabane_hime_22844.jpg
The 5th star of the group.
  • Body Surf: His curse allows him to switch from one corpse to another, as long as they are nearby.
  • Mad Artist: When he was alive he was an artist who slashed his paintings and killed his models.

    Hizuchi 

Hizuchi

Voiced by: Tatsuhisa Suzuki (Japanese), Jerry Jewell (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/hizuchi_corpse_princess.jpg
The 2nd star of the group.
  • Vengeful Ghost: Or Vengeful Corpse. Ouri's mother was responsible for his death. Hizuchi was determined to make Ouri pay for what happened to him.

    Toya 

Toya

Voiced by: Sumire Morohoshi (Japanese), Jamie Marchi (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/toya_shikabane_hime_16064.jpg
The 6th star of the group.
  • Emotion Eater: She attaches balloons to her victims. These balloons cause their happiness to grow to its peak. At which point, it explodes and kills the victim. Or its final monstrous form could devour its victim. Toya was the result of a poor family going to an amusement park, then committing suicide.
  • Mind Manipulation: Her curse allows her to manipulate the minds of people.

Others

    Akasha Shishido 

Akasha Shishido

Voiced by: Mitsuru Miyamoto (Japanese), Josh Grelle (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/akasha_shishidou_16061.jpg
Perhaps one of the pithiest villains after knowing the reason behind his betrayal against the Kōgon Sect.
  • Anti-Villain: At first he seems like the normal evil Jerkass, but when you hear about why he went rogue, what happened to his Shikabane Hime, and what REALLY happens when your Shikabane Hime kills 108 Shikabane you may start to sympathize with him, if not just feel sorry for him.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: He allies with the Seven Stars in order to bring down the Kōgon Sect, eventually becoming the Contract Priest for Hokuto. However, he was killed by Hokuto in the final episode when he rejects her for his previous Shikibane Hime, causing her to revert into a Corpse.
  • The Lost Lenore: He was proud and strong in his faith, until he was forced to kill his Shikabane Hime, Hibiki, who was his fiancee when she was alive.

    Black Cat 

Black Cat

Voiced by: Yui Horie (Japanese), Greg Ayres (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/black_cat_15865.jpg
A mysterious black cat that can, at will, be seen or unseen and also can be incorporeal.
  • Animal Metaphor: The cat is actually a metaphor for Ouri actually being part Shikibane himself. It is not known how he became this way, but that after transforming into a Shikibane after realizing this, the separate entity that his subconscious had become, eventually fades away as well.
  • Cats Have Nine Lives: A ghost cat frequently appears from nowhere and rant cynically about Ouri's "real nature". Only Ouri can see it, even though every character is aware of the supernatural. Creepy. the cat is really part of Ouri's self, since souls permanently leave this world upon death. So it's an Uncatty Resemblance.
  • Enigmatic Minion: He's not exactly a villain, but his true agenda remains unknown.

    Nozomi Kasuga 

Nozomi Kasuga

Voiced by: Miki Maruyama (Japanese), Tia Ballard (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/nozomi_kasuga_15863.jpg
A classmate of Ouri, nicknamed Omune-sama or "Breast Goddess".

    Mizuki Inuhiko 

Mizuki Inuhiko

Voiced by: Fuyuka Oura (Japanese), Clarine Harp (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/172025.jpg
A classmate of Ouri.

    Sumitori 

Sumitori

Voiced by: Masayuki Shouji (Japanese), Sean Michael Teague (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/sumitori_shikabane_hime_22680.jpg
Another classmate of Ouri's.

    Hiroshige Ushijima 

Hiroshige Ushijima

Voiced by: Tooru Nara (Japanese), Micah Solusod (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/hiroshige_ushijima_22679.jpg
The girl-obsessed friend of Ouri Kagami.
  • Buxom Is Better: He openly complains about the lack of busty women in their class and obsesses over Nozomi because of her breasts, calling her "Omune-sama" ("Breast Goddess" in the dub).

    Riko 

Riko

Voiced by: Yui Horie (Japanese), Stephanie Young (English)
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/riko2.jpg
Riko is like the "Mother Hen" of sorts.
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