Team Urameshi | Supporting Cast | Allies | Main Antagonists | The Three Kings | Other Dark Tournament Participants | Other Characters
Powers: Spirit Wave
The Old Master of the martial art: "Reikou Hadouken (Spirit Wave)", Genkai is a legendary human psychic first seen holding her succession tournament in choosing an apprentice to pass on her power. With Yusuke's unexpected victory to her succession rights, she becomes his mentor, and is determined to beat skill into him even if he doesn't want it. Unknown to everyone (though not above suspicion), she's also the fifth masked fighter for Team Urameshi during the Dark Tournament. Has something of an interesting past with the younger Toguro brother.
- Action Girl: She is still one of these as a 70+-year-old woman, and, when she was younger, she helped Team Toguro with the Dark Tournament, her being the only girl on that team.
- Affectionate Nickname: At first she called Yusuke "dimwit" because of his lazy, street-brawling tendencies. Over time, this becomes her favorite name for him.
- Back from the Dead: After her first death and the final battle with Toguro, she's revived by Koenma. Averted with her second death between the penultimate and final chapters, because it was from simple old age that time.
- Brought Down to Badass: The li'l ol' hag still manages to hold her own quite well against Doctor's territory even after giving Yusuke her Spirit Wave Orb. Prior to that, she also took out Suzuki and Shishiwakamaru, two C-class demons, with little effort, as well as became the first character on-screen to actually manage to injure Younger Toguro.
- Brought Down to Normal: The ultimate secret of the Spirit Wave is the Spirit Wave Orb, which she has to pass down to her apprentice. This makes him stronger while making her roughly 90% weaker.
- Catchphrase Insult: She always calls Yusuke "Dimwit".
- Chekhov's Gun: Her gaming skills become very useful against Gamemaster who can manifest video games into reality.Genkai: "What? You think I've been playing Solitaire for the past 50 years?"
- Cool Old Lady: What else do you call an old lady who can kill demons with her hands behind her back and beat the world's hardest video game in a few hours?
- Deadpan Snarker: Sarcastic quips are her specialty, though she laces it with bitter cynicism.
- The Dreaded: She's killed a 'lot of demons in her tenure as a psychic. Nearly every demon at the Dark Tournament had heard of her name and is terrified of the idea of her being around. As Karasu put it, she was the subject of their bedtime stories.
- Gamer Chick: Because she doesn't have much to do when she's not training besides playing some arcade game she owns. Really. It's shown that some of her games are a form of training in and of themselves, but that doesn't explain, say, her master-level skill at Shoot 'Em Up games.
- Healing Hands: Though she doesn't use them often, she can heal people.
- Hidden Heart of Gold: As a Sink or Swim Mentor enforcing Training from Hell on Yusuke, she can come across as unfeeling. It's clear later on that she cares just as much as anybody else, but don't expect her to show it though.
- Honest Advisor: The main thing Yusuke likes about her is that she's one of the few adults he knows that doesn't screw around with him. Yes, she busts his balls all the time, but she's always got a point.
- Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: With her old friend Younger Toguro, whose legs were taller than her whole body.
- I Was Quite a Looker: Was VERY cute when young. Her choosing to be old rather than become a demon-like Toguro is what drove him to kill her.
- Killed Off for Real: In the very last chapter of the manga (#175), it's revealed that she's passed away from old age (she's over seventy) since the events of the Gates of Judgment hostage situation in chapter 174. Due to it being from natural causes, she stays dead this time.
- Little Dead Riding Hood: Was killed by Younger Toguro in her usual red attire. She recovered.
- Mentor Occupational Hazard: Toguro kills her to make Yusuke stronger.
- Meaningful Name: Genkai generally means "limit" in Japanese, which references the training she makes Yusuke go through in order to "go beyond his limits". It's a homonym too; her name is written with the kanji for "illusion" and "sea" — "sea of illusion", which is also meaningful as she's an Old Master with a lot of secrets.
- Miniature Senior Citizen: A subversion, as she is seen in flashbacks to have always been that short.
- Never Mess with Granny: As someone who is a former champion of the Dark Tournament, her fighting skill should be without question. That doesn't stop glory-seeking demons from trying to fight her.
- Not So Stoic: Is harsh, disparaging, and domineering to Yusuke to a fault, but almost has a Heroic BSoD when he dies in the Chapter Black saga.
- Also, she yells at Toguro when he's literally about to go to Hell.
- And when he continues to deny she is the same person that fought alongside him 50 years ago, she is VERY UPSET.
- Old Master: The "just wants a break" version, and badass grandma.
- Parental Substitute: While Atsuko loves Yusuke, she's too much of a lush to be a mother to him. Genkai incidentally stepped into this role when she started training Yusuke. In fact, this is part of the reason Yusuke refused to kill her when Genkai said it was necessary to inherit her Spirit Wave Orb.
- Paper-Thin Disguise: Doubly subverted. Her disguise is her usual outfit with a head covering bandage. Underneath is her younger appearance.
- Pint-Sized Powerhouse: She's barely taller then Hiei. In her first episode, she knocks two rude and huge men into a wall just by blinking a wave of energy at them. Be polite to your elders.
- Progressively Prettier: When she first appeared in the anime, she was downright toad-like, with yellowish skin and gigantic eyelids. As her role expanded, she started letting her hair down, grew eyebrows (??), and dropped a few obvious wrinkles. She still looks worn down and ragged, but you can tell that she was once very pretty. Averted in the manga, where she is more or less that way since her introduction.
- Renowned Selective Mentor: Holds a tournament to determine her successor. However, she also points out that she doesn't consider morality a factor when selecting a successor, and part of Yusuke's entering is so that Rando will not receive her techniques.
- Self-Deprecation: She's not afraid to make fun of herself in the pursuit of snark.Shishiwakamaru: I'm surprised my sword's sound alone didn't kill you, you withered old hag.
Genkai: Yes, silly me, I must have forgotten to turn my hearing aid on. When you get to be a washed-up old lady like me, the memory is the first to go.
- She's a Man in Japan: In the Filipino dub, she was given the name Jeremiah, which fortunately is unisex, although usually used by males.
- Sink or Swim Mentor: Pretty obvious when we first meet her that whomever she would take under her wing, she wasn't going to go easy on them. Heck her impromptu tournament was pretty much training in itself (Changing lots with their spirit energy, the games gauging the strength of their powers, enduring a forest full of monsters, fighting one on one in the dark, etc). Yusuke found this out the hard way after beating Rando, instantly forced into training the following day and had to endure activities such as balancing using his spirit energy on a needle for hours, taking the energy blast head on and having to keep it up till he could withstand it etc. When Yusuke comes back to her after being forced into the Dark Tournament, she cites she was holding back the first time and would really go all out to prepare him.
- Sixth Ranger: Since taking in Yusuke as her apprentice, Genkai joins in on Yusukes detective team through the Dark Tournament, the Sensui case, and through the final minutes in the case of the Sei-Sei Shinto.
- Stern Teacher: Considering that she's training her student to inherit an incredible amount of spiritual power, she does not fuck around making sure he is ready.
- Superpower Lottery: Her Spirit Wave Technique effectively gives her this trope, which is why her power is so coveted and feared by demons. The technique uses one's body as a center for spirit energy (instead of only one's finger like in the Spirit Gun), in a sense, making one's whole body an energized weapon. Doing so not only returns one's body to the time it was at its peak, but grants numerous abilities including healing wounds, purification, and various energy-enhanced tricks.
- Training from Hell: For Yusuke, herself, and the Six Fighters, in the Three Kings arc. "Grandma's evil boot camp" sometimes seems like an understatement. For instance, one of her practices is "Use your spirit energy to float above the spike. We will hold this for twelve hours."
- Trickster Mentor: Sometimes, as part of Yusuke's Training from Hell. He mentions to Kuwabara that he can't tell when she's actually training him or when she's just being an ass.
- Unscrupulous Hero: She's reclusive, doesn't seek to harm others often, and will provide aid to those she deems worthy, but she only fights to get what she needs for herself, will destroy whatever she needs to fulfill those needs, and doesn't care for justice whatsoever. She also points out that she doesn't consider morality a factor when selecting a successor. By her own admission, she's a psychic, not a saint.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Yusuke loves and is totally loyal to her, and she in turn is fond of him as her favorite pupil, successor, and surrogate son. They spend most of their together with him threatening to kill her for all of her Training from Hell sessions and with her telling him in excruciating detail every one of his faults.
- Volleying Insults: Against Yusuke all the time. Over time, it becomes sort of their 'thing' that they do.
- Weak, but Skilled: "Weak" is pushing it, but old age has diminished her ability to use her awesome power to its full potential, and yet she's so masterful at using it that a little bit of her power goes a long way. It really shows when she gives up the bulk of it to Yusuke; she still manages to effortlessly defeat Shishiwakamaru and Suzuki without using any of her remaining spirit energy.
Powers: One hell of a slap!
Class Representative of Sariyashki High and Yusuke's childhood friend, Keiko is his Love Interest throughout the series.
- Action Survivor: Has no supernatural powers to defend herself from demonic and powerful forces. She gets by being plucky and resourceful, shown especially when she and Botan are up against zombies controlled by insects.
- All Girls Want Bad Boys: Her and Yusuke. Justified in that while the rest of the school thinks he's some kind of mob boss she knows he's not as bad as he seems because they grew up together, therefore she does know his Hidden Heart of Gold very well.
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: Her and Yusuke.
- Brainy Brunette: The investigator from spirit world says "Her marks are next to perfect."
- Childhood Friend Romance: With Yusuke — They are childhood friends and later become an Official Couple.
- Childhood Marriage Promise: Played for laughs. Yusuke gives her one right before going to the Demon World to meet Raizen, she's baffled by it... and then Mr. Yukimura laughs cheerfully and says "he did that every time he gave you grief when you were kids, remember?"
- Curtains Match the Window: Brown hair and brown eyes.
- Damsel in Distress: Not her fault, as it's a consequence of having no magic or spiritual powers.
- Demoted to Satellite Love Interest: In the beginning she played a more active role in helping Yusuke come back to life. Not soon after she gets shoehorned to the side, ends up cleaning after Yusukes mess and being Locked Out of the Loop about most spiritual matters. It doesnt help that Togashi himself said that hedid not like Keiko all that much, and admitted that he primarily created her to be a character that Yusuke can emote to.
- Girl Next Door: Very normal compared to Yusuke, and pretty much the only person he can have an ordinary conversation with.
- Heroic BSoD: Has a pretty big one when Yusuke gets the tar beaten out of him by Younger Toguro.
- I Wished You Were Dead: After being irritated by Yusuke yet again, she furiously snaps "Why don't you just die?!" Shortly after, Yusuke performs his Heroic Sacrifice to save a kid, and Keiko's resultant breakdown is part of what convinces him to work his way back.
- Leg Focus: When Botan meets her again in the finale she makes a remark about her legs having grown, while Keiko spends the episode wearing a rather short skirt.
- Morality Pet: To Yusuke. Seeing him caring for, and being bossed around by, her shows he's a Jerk with a Heart of Gold.
- Muggle: Keiko and Atsuko are the only characters listed here without any kind of supernatural powers.
- Official Couple: With Yusuke since his revival more or less. Cemented at the end.
- Plucky Girl: Hiei's Shadow Sword, insect-controlled humans, the Dark Tournament...she's been able to handle it all pretty nicely. The girl's willing to douse herself with water and go through fire to rescue Yusuke's body!
- She's All Grown Up: Botan remarks in the finale how she's grown. Especially her legs.
- Spell My Name with an S: Television closed captions for the English dub spell her name as "Kayko"...starting near the end of the series, as before they have it spelled properly.
- Traumatic Haircut: Averted. Getting parts of her hair singed off after rescuing Yusuke from a fire leads to no angst on her part.
- Tsundere: Often tsun-tsun towards Yusuke (particularly when he's praising her body), although it's clear she does worry about him. The brief dere-dere moments are when he gets out of a particularly dangerous situation. She's a little harsher in the manga.
Powers: Spirit Awareness
Kazuma Kuwabara's Deadpan Snarker elder sister, even more spiritually aware than him.
- Action Survivor: The girl isn't a fighter, but manages to survive this very action-packed story. That's pretty badass in itself.
- Adaptational Late Appearance: In the manga, she made her debut at the end of the story when Yusuke's house was on fire, giving Keiko new clothes, evening out her burned hair, and telling her about the ghost following her. The incident was adapted into the anime's fourth episode without her, with Shizuru not appearing until Episode 22, the beginning of the "Rescue Yukina" arc.
- All Girls Want Bad Boys: Her and Sakyo in the anime. Though she's smart enough to not harbor any illusions about him turning to the side of good, she does listen to his really creepy backstory and show him far more compassion than he deserves. Could be subverted due to just being his looks and/or because he does treat her significantly better than he bothers to treat anyone else.
- Aloof Big Sister: She's in general incredibly cold and cynical towards her brother, but it's just her own way of showing love. She knows that he's far too gentle for his own good, so it's her own way of toughening him up.
- Big Sister Bully: She's sometimes abusive towards her brother.
- Cool Big Sis: Actually Kuwabara Kazuma's older sister, who seems to consider it her job to keep the younger (acting?) girls safe and upbeat.
- Dating Catwoman: She and Sakyo show attraction to each other in the anime, but it is cut short by his death.
- Deadpan Snarker: She has a knack for dry comments, usually directed at her little brother's antics.
- Dub Name Change: The Spanish dub renders her first name as Chitsuru.
- Education Mama: In the final arc, puts pressure on Kuwabara to study, which results in him getting into a good high school, albeit barely.
- Hidden Heart of Gold: She does care about her brother, but you're not gonna find her admitting or showing that any time soon.
- It Runs in the Family: Has a high spiritual awareness like her brother.
- Psychic Powers: She's frighteningly clairvoyant, able to see trouble from a mile away. She can also actually see ghosts — it's implied that her spiritual awareness is even greater than her brother's.
- Sharp Dressed Woman: She's arguably the most well-dressed character in the series (other than Sakyo). She's usually found in a suit, or at the least a Waistcoat of Style.
- Smoking Is Cool: She even puts her cigarette out on an apparition's tongue to shut him up.
- Tragic Keepsake: Sakyo's lighter.
A Yuki Onna and the object of Kuwabara's affection, Yukina is Hiei's twin sister, a fact lost on Kuwabara and Yukina herself. She was kidnapped and kept imprisoned for a time by Tarukane for her tears, which can transform into tear jewels that can fetch a high price on the black market.
- Beware the Nice Ones: She once told Hiei her real reason for trying to find her brother: to take him back to their hometown to have him kill-off their entire Yuki Onna race. That's right. One of, if not the, nicest and sweetest characters in the entire series wants her brother to commit genocide against her own people.
- Body to Jewel: Her tears become valuable jewels, which has people trying to make her cry through incredible cruelty.
- Break the Cutie: She experiences this briefly after watching her only two friends, a pair of bluebirds, get murdered in cold blood. We later find out that it's happened to her many times before, dating all the way back to her own kind's mistreatment of her.
- Cuteness Proximity: Her very appearance is enough to turn anyone into a doting big-brother and Cool Big Sis who wants to hug her all day long.
- Damsel in Distress: When she's first introduced she needs the main characters to rescue her.
- Defiant Captive: She faces torture with as much dignity as she can unless others are threatened/tortured/killed in front of her. Which hits you like a sack of bricks when you think of how long the poor girl has been tortured until the point of desensitization.
- Friend to All Living Things: Portrayed this way in her first appearances. The manga has an off-hand mention of the birds being Reikai messengers, however, and later, one of Hiei's Whole Episode Flashbacks has her make an interesting statement...which makes her a subversion of the trope if anything.
- Girl in the Tower: In a sense, yes. She is introduced as a damsel in distress that needs rescuing. She's imprisoned in a stronghold mansion and inside that mansion, she's kept at the top of a tower.
- Healing Hands: But not The Medic. Her powers are good, but she doesn't appear often enough for that.
- Hidden Depths: Her true reason for leaving her people and looking for her brother is shocking considering her normal personality.
- Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: With Kazuma who is easily twice her size.
- An Ice Person: She's an Ice Maiden so she has Ice Manipulation.
- Implied Love Interest: She may or may not be Kuwabara's girlfriend by the end of the series. He certainly would be happy about the situation.
- I'm Taking Her Home with Me!: Kuwabara's first reaction upon seeing her in Koenma's mission video is infatuation, and just about every good person in the cast when they meet her for the first time. By the end of the series Kuwabara's family does take her home, whether as a little sister or as Kazuma's girlfriend/wife is left uncertain.
- The Ingenue: Kind, innocent, gentle, etc.
- Maybe Ever After: It is unknown what her situation with Kuwabara is at the end of the series but they will definitely be spending more time together.
- Mercy Kill: Seems to want this to happen to the Ice Maiden society.Yukina: "If survival means becoming as cold as ice... then I don't see the point."
- Nice Girl: Incredibly sweet and gentle. Even Hiei can't be his normal surly self in her presence.
- Oblivious to Love: Either sincerely unaware of Kuwabara's affections or doing a fantastic job of pretending to be so.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Averted. She has deep red eyes yet she's anything BUT evil. Then again, she's searching for her brother to have him commit a genocide...
- Red String of Fate: With Kuwabara, at least from his perspective. He even ties a red string on his pinky as a sign; Yukina just thinks it's funny.
- Separated at Birth: With Hiei. So separated that he was thrown off the Ice Demon's floating city few hours after he and Yukina were born, despite their mother's cries and pleas to get him spared.
- Silk Hiding Steel: Took years of torture with grace and froze whoever crossed her to the point of people being warned about dealing with her.
- True Blue Femininity: Always wears a light blue kimono, except in the very last episode, and is arguably the sweetest character in the show (outside of wanting her race dead).
- Vague Age: Along with Hiei, she's between 16- to 99-years-old. Demon, you know?
- Will They or Won't They?: Her and Kuwabara. The finale keeps the status quo even though there are some hints that Yukina just might reciprocate.
- Yamato Nadeshiko: In both appearance (long hair, kimono, moderate height) and personality (dignified, strong-willed, polite, loving), endures torture with graceful defiance, though she's hardly a demure love interest. We find out her true reason for searching for her brother was so that he could commence the genocide of her species.
Yusuke's alcoholic mother, unaware of his Spirit Detective job in the anime.
In the manga, she's considered part of the principal cast alongside Keiko and Shizuru and is a spectator at the Dark Tournament and some of the early Sensui fights.
- Adaptational Jerkass: The anime pictures her as an unreasonable jerkass from the first minute, but in the manga, she's relatively more serene and mature.
- Advertised Extra: She is shown in the first anime opening, despite not doing much of anything. Notably, the second opening removes her.
- Alcoholic Parent: She is almost always shown drunk, and more than once toasted to the point of sleeping in.
- Amicable Exes: In the manga, she and (someone who is implied to be) Yusuke's father are on friendly terms, and would meet each other once a month. Although she shuts down any possibility of them getting back together, noting that Yusuke wouldn't welcome it given that Yusuke witnessed the man abused her when Yusuke was a toddler.
- Aw, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: She may not be the most responsible parent, but she genuinely cares for Yusuke.
- Demoted to Extra: She kinda disappears after the anime's Spirit Detective arc. Notably, when Keiko, Botan, and Shizuru are discussing the Dark Tournament in the anime, Atsuko is passed out drunk. In the manga, the scene is never shown, but all four show up there together.
- Does Not Like Shoes: She never appears to wear any in the anime. In the manga, as she also wears her business attire from time to time.
- Dragon Lady: Not shown in the anime, but she seemed to have ties with Yakuza in the manga. She and her group threatened the school's principal to let Yusuke come back to school after he came back to life. She also got Yusuke set up with a business of his own through her connections at the end of the manga.
- Hard-Drinking Party Girl: She often draws others into her alcohol marathons.
- Muggle: Both Atsuko and her ex-boyfriend note has no spiritual powers. We're not even sure which side of the Urameshi family Yusuke got his demon ancestry from.
- One of the Boys: Her pals outside of Yusuke's circle in the manga are men.
- Parents as People: While she does clearly love her son, she is just as clearly unprepared for motherhood.
- Stacy's Mom: Kuwabara's gang certainly seemed to think she is a hot mom.
- Teen Pregnancy: She had Yusuke when she was 15.
Abilities: Psychic link with Yusuke, communication medium for Genkai.
A Spirit Beast who hatched from an egg given to Yusuke by Koenma. Its form was based on the reflection of Yusuke's mentality.
- Bond Creature: Yusuke received an egg that would hatch a spirit beast. If Yusuke's intentions are good then it will be this and will provide Yusuke the ticket to resurrection. If he isn't, the beast will devour his soul. The egg would have been the latter but he sacrificed the egg in order to save Keiko from his burning house. Koenma saw the turnout, and saved the egg all the while making another resurrection plan for Yusuke; the egg was left in the care of Koenma and he gave the egg to Yusuke once it was ready to hatch. Puu's infant form resembles a blue Furby with huge floppy ears, but evolves into something like a phoenix after Yuusuke is resurrected again as a Mazoku.
- Cessation of Existence: If it hatched as originally planned then it would have become a beast that would swallow his soul
- Chekhov's Gun: The egg Yusuke throws into the fire to save Keiko early in the series is Puu! It gets lampshaded when Koenma has to remind Yusuke about the egg during the Dark Tournament arc, as he'd completely forgotten about it after he came back to life.
- Empathy Pet: Whatever Yusuke is feeling, Puu will also feel and vice versa.
- Foreshadowing: During the final match against Toguro Yusuke's spirit energy takes the form of a giant bird and flies around the stadium before it settles back into him, foreshadowing the form Puu (who is a representation of Yusuke's spirit) will eventually take. (Puu also settles down around Yusuke right after taking that form, just like the energy did.)
- Head Pet: He spent his early days on Yusuke's head. It was a stark contrast with his delinquent image.
- The Phoenix: His grown form is a large bird-like creature.
- Pokémon Speak: Keiko named it, "Puu" based on its way of speech.
- Series Mascot: Due to being the token cute critter for Team Urameshi, Puu inevitably becomes this.
- Synchronization: With Yusuke by virtue of being his bond creature.
A Ferry girl that is featured in the movie "Bonds of Fire"/Poltergeist Report.
- Canon Foreigner: She was created specifically for the movie.
- Idiot Hair: She has an ahoge that is long enough that it bends back, however she isn't dumb. A Ferry girl in training yes, but not stupid.
- Miko: She wears an outfit that resembles one that would be worn by a Shinto Shrine Maiden (AKA Miko).
- Ms. Exposition: Serves as this in explaining the backstory regarding the Spirit World vs Netherworld war that occurred eons earlier.
- Non-Standard Character Design: She is in the same spirit class as Botan and Ayame, but she looks much younger than any of them despite her presumably ancient age.
- Theme Naming: She continues this trend of Shinigami having names derived from flowers. Hinageshi's name translates into English as "Poppy".
Chief ferry girl across the River Styx, Botan is the perky Shinigami sent to retrieve Yusuke's soul after his unexpected death. She initially serves as his guide back to life and becomes his assistant upon his appointment as Spirit Detective.
- Accent Adaptation: Has a British accent in the English dub, presumably to emphasize how knowledgeable she is.
- Adaptational Badass: Botan is solidly a non-fighting character in the manga, but the anime adaptation adds a few action moments for her, like in the Four Saint Beasts storyline, where she easily fends off possessed people with a baseball bat and a nice spin kick (in the manga, she only used the bat to squash demon insects). The first movie even upgrades her outright into Action Girl status, as she charges right off the door along with Yusuke and his team and kicks just as much ass as them by bludgeoning enemies with her oar.
- Catchphrase: "Bingo bingo!" seemed to go through this route at the beginning of the series, but it was later abandoned.
- Cat Smile: Sometimes adopts it, when not full cat traits, when she plays jokes.
- Don't Fear The Reaper: Both in appearance (cute and perky) and in role (guide to the afterlife).
- Genki Girl: Her liveliness and general energy is one reason why Yusuke didn't think she was a grim reaper.
- The Grim Reaper: A pleasant Japanese subversion. Yusuke was expecting the straight version (black robe, scythe, stoic personality etc.) and that's why he was so surprised to see a cute and cheerful girl around his own age wearing a pink kimono.
- Guile Hero: While Botan doesn't have fighting skills or an overwhelming spirit energy, she does use her minor abilities to possess sleeping people and light creation to save Yusuke's life more than a couple times.
- Healing Hands: Has this as a limited ability, and uses it on Mitarai at some point.
- Immortal Immaturity: Her age is unknown, although probably very old given her spirit nature. Her behavior, however, is roughly that of a hyper young woman.
- Manic Pixie Dream Girl: She fits the personality type (minus crazy impulses, mostly) but her relationship with Yusuke was always platonic.
- Nice Girl: For a Grim Reaper, she's rather affable and lively, rarely having a bad bone in her body.
- Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: In the English dub, she has a slight English accent which diminishes over the course of the series and then pops back up in random intervals.
- Really 700 Years Old: Botan's true age is unknown, if she even has, but she looks like a human girl the age of the main cast. She often poses convincingly as a classmate to Yusuke and Keiko just by wearing their school's uniform.
- Shinigami: A Shinigami with character details (such as the oar she rides on and her blue hair) referencing the Japanese Buddhist myth of the Sanzu River, analogous to the Western River Styx. Her primary function is as a psychopomp, although that appears less and less as the series focuses more on Yusuke's battles with demons. The English dub has her call herself the Grim Reaper and Guardian of the River Styx instead.
- Shipper on Deck: She is a huge Yusuke/Keiko fangirl, trying to sell it to Sayaka. She also ships Koenma/Ayame in the manga, and even contrives a little alone time for them.
- Team Mom: Tends to mother Team Urameshi around. Then again, the team is composed by two juvenile delinquents and two reformed criminals, so it is a given.
- Theme Naming: Ferry girls have names based on flowers of which in Botan's case is based on peony.
Powers: Shapeshifting / Ma Fū Kan
Chief administrator of the Spirit World and son of King Enma, Koenma resurrects Yusuke and employs Yusuke as a Spirit Detective to aid him on criminal investigations between different realms on Earth.
- Bad Boss: Played for laughs as he treats the Jorge like dirt.
- Barrier Warrior: About the only thing he can do is make barriers out of spirit energy. He's damn good at it too; his strongest being the only thing powerful enough to stop Sensui for good.
- Beleaguered Bureaucrat: He's usually seen dealing with mountains of paperwork. It's one of the reasons why he needs a spirit detective in the first place.
- Berserk Button: Being laughed off for resembling a toddler.
- Big Good: He is Yusuke's boss and the administrator of the Spirit World.
- Bishōnen: In his adult form he is handsome in a delicate sort of way.
- Chekhov's Gun: His pacifier is a device that creates a barrier strong enough to hold S-Class demons.
- Chekhov's Gunman: The Chapter Black Saga forces him out of the sidelines, and into the front field for the first time.
- Cowardly Lion: Him being a bit of a coward is often played for laughs, even in serious situations. However, he bets his life nonchalantly against Sakyo, and in the Sensui arc, he is willing to die to resolve an issue he had a personal stake in.
- Cross-Dressing Voices: Voiced by Mrs. Mayumi Tanaka in the original Japanese. Is also often voiced by female actresses in the dubs. In the Latin American dub, Child!Koenma was voiced by a woman; older!Koenma, by a man, and he's also voiced by a man in the English dub, much to Sean Michael Teague's vindication. He talks on the commentary track about how his voice is so high that he's constantly being mistaken for a woman at drive-throughs, so getting a job because he has a higher-pitched voice was great.
- Curtains Match the Window: Brown hair and eyes.
- Deadpan Snarker: In his older form.
- Failure Knight: Is extremely guilt-ridden from his involvement and appointment of Sensui. Enough for him to face him personally, and betray his own father.
- Family Theme Naming: His name literally means "Enma Jr.," hence the "Jr" logo on his hat. note
- Immortal Immaturity: More in the anime than the manga, and usually when he's in his baby form.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He's snide, condescending and rude, and he generally presents himself as a childish blowhard and Lovable Coward, but from the start Koenma had Yusuke's interests in mind (even if he didn't always think he would survive) and helped where he can, and he has just as many moments where he shows he actually does care as he does being a brat. He even put his life on the line when the chips are down once or twice.
- King of All Cosmos: More like a prince, as he's still a toddler.
- Mr. Exposition: Particularly in the anime, where he has a video screen that lets him see everything and a clueless assistant who needs things spelled out to him.
- My Greatest Failure: Sensui was his pride and joy as Spirit Detective, but was psychologically incapable of handling the job. Even knowing this, Koenma sent him to deal with the Black Black Club, whose depravity was too much for Sensui. Koenma, therefore, blames himself, not only for losing the most valuable asset Spirit World has ever had, but creating an extremely dangerous enemy and ruining the life of an innocent child. So much so that he's blindingly desperate to personally atone for his mistakes, in contrast to the myriad of other problems in the series he dumps on Yusuke's head.
- Non-Action Guy: He has no combat skill whatsoever, to the point where he claims that even Sakyo could beat him easily in a fight. He could be exaggerating to get out of a fight, but the absurdly high stakes and Koenma's uncharacteristically serious demeanor at the time give the lie to the notion. Even when he's a stand-in for Genkai in the Dark Tournament, his solution to fighting is The Koenmatron Jetpack. Even so, his non-combat spells are extremely powerful, allowing him to perform otherwise impossible feats such as reviving the dead.
- Older Alter Ego: Has a very bishounen adult form.
- Oral Fixation: His pacifier. Even as his Older and Sexier Alter Ego, he keeps the pacifier.
- Rage Against the Heavens: Behind the scenes, during the Demon World Unification Tournament, Koenma impeached and overthrew his father for the crimes of manipulating Demons to cause crimes in Human World for centuries.
- Precocious Crush: Played with. He has a crush on Ayame, who looks much older than him, but he's actually the older of the two in terms of years
- Really 700 Years Old: Is exactly 700-years-old, and appears to be a toddler. He can transform into a bishonen teen form for a few minutes at a time... but doesn't remove his pacifier when he does so. Stays in teenage form continuously later in the series when it gets more serious. Eventually, the pacifier is revealed to be a device to store energy. He keeps the pacifier in his mouth even after using up its stored energy, presumably because that's how he recharges it.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: When it comes down to it, he is this. He fast-tracks Yusuke's resurrection despite still not being sure of him because he realizes that Yusuke's actions as a ghost might not be indicative of his actions as a living person and because a quirk of Yusuke's body harmonics means he won't get the chance to come back to life again for another 50 years. He also paroles Kurama and Hiei because Yusuke needs the backup, sends Yusuke to rescue Hiei's sister in thanks (and gives Hiei the opportunity to find out about it), avoids restricting the Dark Tournament because it gives demons a way to vent their aggression away from humans, arranges tickets for Team Urameshi's friends and family when they find out about the Dark Tournament, tries to talk Toguro into taking a lesser punishment due to his prior good deeds, and helps Kurama with his plans for Yomi under the table because he trusts his judgment. To say nothing of his decision to take Sensui's criticisms of humanity and his father's policies seriously, investigate them thoroughly, and conclude that demons, as a whole, are not the problem, and promptly start treating them better.
- Sexier Alter Ego: Koenma (usually in the form of an infant with a pacifier) is able to take on an older, more Bishōnen appearance.
- Shoo Out the Clowns: His baby form appears less and less as the series gets more serious in tone, and doesn't show up at all in the Chapter Black arc.
- Shout-Out: He is disguised as Tuxedo Mask at the Makai Tournament, probably because Yoshihiro Togashi and Naoko Takeuchi were dating at the time.
- Spoiled Brat: On his bad days, he'll come off as (particularly) insufferable and bossy, particularly towards Saotome.
- The Stoic: In contrast to his short-tempered toddler form, he barely emotes at all in his bishonen mode.
Position: Spirit World Secretary
One of Koenma's direct assistants often blamed and bullied by Koenma.
- Beleaguered Assistant: He is meek and servile most of the time, but has moments where he gets exasperated by Koenma's antics, generally in order for some slapstick to happen against him as a consequence.
- Butt-Monkey: He gets abused by Koenma even when he doesn't do anything.
- Canon Foreigner: His first appearance was as one of several ogre assistants working through Koenma's paper works during the Genkai Tournament Arc in which he provides some small amount of commentary. He then made his next appearance during the Maze Castle Arc unaccompanied by any other ogres in playing Straight Man and Wise Guy with Koenma, and the rest is history.
- Cool Old Guy: His receding hairline and somewhat grandfatherly behavior make him look old, and some dubs give him an elderly voice to match. The cool part is relative, although he has a lot of enthusiasm and generally puts up with everything thrown to him.
- Dub Name Change: A sort of; while his first name is canonically written as Jorge (the Spanish form of George), the Japanese dialogue actually gives it out as George, which is the reason why the English dub changed it officially to its English form. The Spanish dub, on the other hand, pronounces Jorge just like it would be in Spain, even having some fun with it.
- Embarrassing Nickname: Koenma calls him derisively "Jorgito" ("Georgy") on occasions in the Spanish dub.
- Fourth-Wall Observer: In the Spanish dub, Saotome's role as the Narrator All Along is erased, but he still makes remarks about the actual narrator here and there.
- Loincloth: The only thing he and the other ogres wear.
- Multi-Ethnic Name: Has a Spanish first name (oddly pronounced as its English variation) and a Japanese surname.
- Named by the Adaptation: Jorge was originally an unnamed "Secretary Orge" for a good half of the series. By his voice actor's wish to have a name for this character, Mayumi Tanaka (Koenma's actress) proceeded to ad-lib him as "Jorge" since Episode 66 — the transmission from the Dark Tournament to the Black Chapter Arc, while his surname "Saotome" is pitched to Tanaka by Tesshō Genda (Younger Toguro's actor) and was voted the winning surname by the majority of cast present on that day of recording;note gradually this name made it's way to the credits solidifying his Canon Foreigner status.
- Narrator All Along: It is discovered in the last episodes, although hinted at shortly before, that he was the narrator of the show — since it is revealed that the show itself is the records of the protagonists' adventures that Koenma kept (hence the title, which, while using the original Japanese name, is nonetheless translated by Funimation as "Ghost Files").
- Only Known by Their Nickname: Credited as the "Secretary Orge" in Japanese, the dub credits him as "Blue Ogre" up until Chapter Black, and Koenma would either address him as "Ogre," or "Hey, You!" before Koenma's actress started ad-liberating a name for him by the request of Jorge's actor.
- Only Sane Man: He certainly seems like it, especially compared to Koenma, but he has his silly moments as well.
- The Watson: He exists purely for Koenma to abuse and explain things to.
A shinigami like Botan whose primary duty in Spirit World seems to be doing research for Koenma.
- Adaptation Expansion: Inverted. She is one of Koenma's chief assistants in the manga. In the anime, she only comes in over a few appearances, which includes epi. 66 to provide a summary of Younger Toguro's life for him to decide on his fate in the afterlife, and in ep.71 spectating and reporting to Koenma over the status of Mushiori City, and the growth of the Door to the Demon Realm.
- Aloof Dark-Haired Girl: As can be seen here.
- Girl Friday: Koenma's secretary and chief assistant.
- Kimono Is Traditional: She always shows up in her black kimono, and unlike Botan, she never changes into anything else.
- Love Interest: In the manga, Koenma is shown to have an infatuation for her. Whether she has any feelings for him in return is ambiguous.
- Non-Standard Character Design: She looks significantly older than Botan despite they are both the same class of spirit and probably in the same rank.
- Theme Naming: As with her fellow Ferry girls, her name is based on that of a flower. In Ayame's case, hers is iris.
- The Watson: She is the one who primarily serves as this in the manga, but gets replaced as this by Saotome in the anime.
Sayaka was a girl who died young but wasn't able to go to heaven due to being struck by her own intense feeling of loneliness. She encountered Yusuke (while he was still lingering as a spirit) and Botan for illegally dragging a living boy's spirit out to play with her. After solving her problems, she tags along with Yusuke to detect humans who are either being targeted by unwanted spirits, or humans being cursed with life-threatening spells. Out of curiosity, she tracks Keiko Yukimura to see whether she truly loves Yusuke for who he is. Once Sayaka is satisfied with the outcome of those she cared about, she was sent to the Spirit Realm by Botan.
In the anime, Sayaka gets promoted as an investigator for the Spirit Realm responsible for keeping track of persons related to specific cases. She only appeared in Episode 4 to watch, and report to Koenma on Yusuke's character to see if Yusuke is cleared to be brought back to life.
- Demoted to Extra: She hung around with Yusuke while he was a spirit for most of the manga's early chapters before finally deciding to move on. In the anime, she only shows up for one episode in a different role (as a investigator for the relationship between Yusuke and Keiko) and isn't seen again after that.
- Does Not Like Shoes: Played straight in the anime, she doesn't wear any shoes and moves around barefoot while doing her job (then again she is a spirit and wouldn't have need of them, but this still comes off as a little odd considering other spirit world personal that aren't oni are fully dressed). In the manga, this was just due to Jacob Marley Apparel, having died in her nightgown, so naturally, she would be barefoot.
- Lonely Rich Kid: She had no friends when she was alive since her illness prevented her from going out to play with other children. Her wealthy parents were hardly ever around, which made her even more lonely. As a ghost, her loneliness prevents her from moving on to the afterlife.
- Retcon: A lighter case of Adaptational Heroism, due to Sayakas background story being cut from the anime makes non-manga readers unaware of the angst she went through. Unlike most characters and incidents from the first 16 manga chapters of the story, the reason Sayaka cannot be completely written off for the anime was the importance of her "diving her nose into Yusuke's friend circle" checking out not only to see if Yusuke is willing to sacrifice his chance of revival to save others but also Keiko's character, which showcased Keiko's heroism of saving Yusuke's body, leading to Keiko's important Expository Hairstyle Change.
Voiced by: Naomi Watanabe (JP), Meredith McCoy (EN)
A good friend of Botan who drops by to say Hi between work. Her job is to go before the personnel of Botan's division to give out death sentences to people who are about to die.