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Manga / AR∀GO: City of London Police's Special Crimes Investigator

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He ain't heavy; he's my brother.

"What is the price of experience? Do men buy it for a song? Or wisdom for a dance in the street? No, it is bought with the price of all the man hath, his house, his wife, his children."

Official title is AR∀GO: City of London Police's Special Crimes Investigator, but most often shortened to just Arago by fans. The story centers around two twins, Arago and Ewan, whose parents were slaughtered by a Serial Killer named the Patchman. Years later, the vengeful Arago crosses paths with Ewan, who has since become a police officer, just as blood begins to flow again in the streets of London.

After facing him a second time, Arago ends up with the Patchman's supernatural abilities. Instead of wangsting, he joins the London PD and becomes partners with Joe Sullivan.

Oh, and the powers he inherited cause anything not made out of metal or plastic to decay if they touch him. And all sorts of nasty demons are showing up in the city, that only he can see. And he's under suspicion of being the Patchman.

It was written and illustrated by Takahiro Arai, who had previously done the manga adaptation of The Saga of Darren Shan, and has since gone on to draw a manga adaptation of Les MisÚrables. The manga was serialized in Weekly Shonen Sunday from 2009 to 2011 and compiled into nine volumes.

This manga contains examples of:

  • Anyone Can Die:
    • Despite being prominently featured on the front cover, Ewan dies in the first chapter. Only he's revived. Sort of.
    • Joe, Guri-Guri, and The Galley Beggar all kick the Bucket by the end.
  • All Myths Are True : Averted. While some mythical creatures are real, some of them (such as werewolves) are just that- myths.
  • And I Must Scream: Ewan in the implied real ending, where he is in the Cauldron with Patchman in his head, forever trapped there as Arago doesn't know he is still alive and will never rescue him. And during this entire time, he cannot control his body. There's also the fact that he seems to be standing just fine, implying that he has healed from the mortal wound.
  • Bad Liar : Whenever Arago's tugging at his ear and, sometimes, looking away from who he's talking with, it's a sure sign that he's lying. Rio's definitely figured out that he's been hiding a lot from her lately thanks to him not knowing that he always does this when he lies.
  • Beam Spam : Basically what the White Horseman's power boils down to; he can make just about anything into a projectile, and in large quantities.
  • Blessed with Suck : Arago's powers are slowly killing him and will do the same to anyone he touches if he doesn't let go after a while.
  • Clothing Damage: Arago starts his battles fully clothed and ends most of them half naked. The Red Horseman's wardrobe isn't treated kindly either.
  • Combat Pragmatist : Many characters have shades of this, but Oswell Miller is even acknowledged as this in series.
  • Dark and Troubled Past : Arago and Ewan, Joe, Oz , and all four Horsemen qualify. Practically everyone in the series has this trope in their backstory.
  • Fate Worse than Death: Ewan. First he got revived by Patchman and was unable to live if he dies, then he gets killed by his own brother. Even worse, there is a bonus art in the physical copy of the manga that shows that Ewan is alive inside the cauldron, with Patchman presumably still inside his head. Arago doesn't know he's alive.
  • The Fair Folk : Faeries are known to exist. So far, of the few kinds shown (including redcaps, leprechauns, gremlins and goblins), only a few fit the bill.
  • Freudian Excuse : All four Horseman have this, which is why they work for Patchman to end the world to begin with. In the order they were revealed:
    • The Pale Horseman was a musician whose band got into illegal dealings. He took the fall and went to jail, but when he got out, they abandoned him. He believes himself to be the only one he can rely on in the world.
    • The Black Horseman saved an ailing patient with a terminal disease, only to have her commit suicide shortly after. He loses faith in "hope."
    • The White Horseman was a soldier whose close comrades were killed by friendly fire, and the pilot escapes because he's the son of an official. The White Horseman loses his faith in "good" and "evil" because of it.
    • The Red Horseman's mother had an abusive boyfriend, who beat and nearly killed her. Scarlet planned to kill him so she can live happily with her mother, but finds him dead already. While trying to burn the evidence, she's discovered by her mother. She is blamed by her jealous mother and nearly strangled to death. She begins to hate all humanity.
  • Game Face : The gremlins. Subverted by the fact that they never meant to cause any real harm to the protagonist or the boy they were originally chasing; they were just hungry and wanted candy.
  • Hollywood Atheist : Subverted. While Joe is openly an atheist he doesn't act bitter or depressed, though his stance about the supernatural and God is made pretty clear:
    Joe: Things like demons don't actually exist. This is just the work of a human who is like a demon.
    • As of chapter 45, his concept of the world may well be changing.
  • Horned Humanoid : The Red Horseman's bangs spike up into horns when using her fire powers against Arago.
  • Horsemen of the Apocalypse : We've been introduced to all four horsemen by chapter 55.
  • Instant Runes : Could be what appears around Seth's head. Joe and in the end, Coco, has to manually create his own using a staff.
  • Invisible to Normals : Many of the nasty beasties that Arago fights.
  • Made of Iron : The Red Horseman gets blasted with laser beams, crushed with air pressure, hit with an air and fire combo attack directly followed by a Brionac-powered punch, engulfed in tear gas, shot with Bomb Arrows, is hit with a falling ceiling and impaled on a Unicorn's horn. It's only enough to make her retreat with a few bruises.
  • Masquerade : Faeries are quite real-according to the Galley Beggar, many live among humans. Also, Arago and his powers.
  • Meaningful Name : The Red Horseman's name is Scarlet Rabi.
  • Papa Wolf: Do not mess with Coco, because Joe will find you.
  • Psycho Electro : The Pale Rider Lucian most definitely qualifies, being more than willing to kill off a whole train of uninvolved people just to kill Arago and take Brioniac.
  • Power Incontinence : Brionac would be nice if it would turn off once in a while.
    • After being drugged by Seth and the cult at his school, Arago was unable to use Brionac for a short while. It's unknown if it was just due to his inability to focus due to the drugs or if the power turned off.
  • The fact that the protagonist is named Hunt and is a detective at the Met, and that Ewan is wearing a camel coat in the first chapter is a shout out to Ashes to Ashes (2008).
  • The Black Horseman at one point fuses his hand with a chainsaw.
  • Shown Their Work :
    • All of the powers named so far in the series are references to Celtic Mythology, the myths of the British Isles, especially Brionac, the Spear of Lugh, also known as the Spear of God.
  • Small Girl, Big Gun : Well, she hasn't actually used a gun yet, but the impromptu cleaver that the Red Horseman creates gives off the same kind of look: small girl, giant weapon.
  • Static Stun Gun : As a "Slider" (electric person), Lucian is able to use his power in this manner.
  • Super Strength: Arago and the Red Horseman. The former has enough strength to catch a boat that has been thrown at him while the latter casually throws police cars around.
    • Taken to further extremes in the chapter 71, where the Red Horseman uses the minute hand from Big Ben like a sword.
    • Arago is still King of this in the series considering the 'boat' looks to be one of those used for holiday cruises, you know, the bloody huge ones.
  • Took a Level in Badass: In the last chapter, Coco, who now uses her father's weapon, and Rio, who now has full control over the werewolf pelt.
  • Touch of Death : Arago's doesn't turn off. At least it's slow-acting enough that he can briefly touch others without permanently hurting them.
    • Also subverted because Brionac doesn't destroy, it heals. It just has a tendency to heal too much.
  • Trademark Favorite Food : Arago's candy bars. The horrible coffee may also count.
  • Trick Arrow: Oz uses arrows tipped with explosives.