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Manga / Blue Exorcist

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Mephisto: But Rin, you have chosen a path full of thorns. A sad and painful fate awaits you... so much it will make you wish you had died here.
Rin: I don't care! I'm no longer human, but I'm not a demon either. I can only move forwards! I'll become an exorcist!

Blue Exorcist, also known as Ao no Exorcist, is an action comedy fantasy Shōnen manga with Multiple Demographic Appeal by Katou Kazue. It began serialization in Jump Square in 2009.

The story revolves around Rin Okumura, who starts out as somewhat of a delinquent prone to bad grades and getting into fights and is often at odds with his adoptive father, Father Shirou Fujimoto over his behavior. One day while job hunting he starts seeing strange things, and runs into a demon for the first time. Just as the demon is about to kill him, blue flames surround his body and burn his attacker. The demon realizes that Rin is the one he has been searching for: the son of Satan.

Rin is saved by Shiro Fujimoto when he comes and exorcises the demon. After a brief lesson on demons, Fujimoto explains that Rin is actually the Son of Satan, a half demon who had his powers sealed until now. He gives Rin the sword that seals his demon powers and tries to see him off, but unfortunately Rin thinks it's all bullcrap and accuses Shiro of throwing him out. Double unfortunately, Satan decides to come in and say hello. Rin saves himself by drawing the sword, but Father Fujimoto dies in the process. After the funeral, he is confronted by Mephisto, a member of the True Cross Order and a friend of Shiro's, and demands to join the True Cross Order and become an Exorcist.

The series largely follows Rin's quest to become the strongest exorcist, make friends, and defeat Satan. It also gives focus to secondary characters, namely Yukio Okumura, Shiemi Moriyama, Shura Kirigakure, Ryuuji "Bon" Suguro, Renzou Shima, Konekomaru Miwa, and Izumo Kamiki. All of which are not exactly who you first think they are; Deconstructions, Reconstructions, Played With, and Subverted tropes abound here, especially in regards to characters.

A 25-episode anime adaptation animated by A-1 Pictures with music by Hiroyuki Sawano began airing on April 17, 2011. You can find it on Viz Anime, Crunchyroll (free simulcast) and Hulu. The English dub can be seen on Neon Alley for the PS3 as of October 2, 2012. It also is now available on Netflix with the option of either sub or dub. The anime is a member of the Toonami block as of February 23, 2014. A new anime covering the Impure King arc aired in 2017 as part of the winter 2017 anime lineup. The English dub for the season can be streamed on Hulu. A third season animated by Studio VOLN and covering the Illuminati arc began to air on January 7, 2024.

Other media includes:

Anime & Manga

  • The Miyama-Uguisu Mansion Incident (宮山鶯邸事件 Miyama Uguisu Tei Jiken) - The one shot acted as a Pilot to series.
  • Blue Exorcist: The Movie (December 28, 2012) A Light Novel adaptation was released December 31, 2012.
  • Salaryman Exorcist: The Sorrows of Yukio Okumura (サラリーマン祓魔師 奥村雪男の哀愁 Salaryman Futsumashi Okumura Yukio no Aishū) (2013-2020) - A spin-off series focused on Rin's brother Yukio.

Light Novels

  • Blue Exorcist: Weekend Hero (青の祓魔師エクソシスト ウィークエンド・ヒーロー Ao no Ekusoshisuto Uīkuendo・Hīrō) (2011)
  • Blue Exorcist: Home Sweet Home (青の祓魔師エクソシスト ホーム・スイート・ホーム Ao no Ekusoshisuto Hōmu・Suīto・Hōmu) (2012)
  • Blue Exorcist: Bloody Fairytale (青の祓魔師エクソシスト ブラッディ・フェアリーテイル Ao no Ekusoshisuto Buraddi Fearīteiru) (2014)
  • Blue Exorcist: Spy Game (青の祓魔師エクソシスト スパイ・ゲーム Ao no Ekusoshisuto Supai Gēmu) (2017)

Video Games

  • Blue Exorcist: The Chronocyclic Labyrinth (青の祓魔師 幻刻げんこくの迷宮ラビリンス Genkoku no Rabirinsu) (2012) - A Visual Novel released for the PSP by Bandai Namco Entertainment.
  • Blue Exorcist: DAMNED CHORD (青の祓魔師 DAMNED CHORD) (2020) - A mobile game.


  • Live Act Ao no Exorcist ~Mashin no Rakuin~ (2012) - A stage play directed and written by Satoshi Owada that ran for nine performances at the Nippon Seinenkan hall in Tokyo's Shinjuku ward.

This series provides examples of:

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  • 2D Visuals, 3D Effects: The Gehenna Gate and "Messiah" (read: atomic bomb mockup) in the anime.
  • Aborted Arc: In the first chapter, Reiji mentioned that he'd be attending True Cross Academy thanks to his family's connections. After Fujimoto exorcised him, he mentioned that he could potentially get possessed again if he continued to give into his sinful behavior (and in the anime, he did). Those lines seemed to imply that he was going to be a recurring character and maybe even Rin's rival. However, he never appears again after his exorcism and the role of The Rival ended up going to Ryuji instead.
    • It's only just touched upon, but we see flashes of Izumo's backstory in one early episode. Though it was eventually covered in the manga, it never came up again in the anime which went in another direction. Though possibly averted now that the show has gotten another season that continues the manga and ignores all the original content the first season created.
  • Academy of Adventure: True Cross Academy, with demons showing up on the grounds, mysterious, possibly villainous teachers, and the True Cross Order having not only a base there, but a school for exorcists.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The first half of the anime, before it diverges onto an anime-original story.
    • The movie expanded on the Phantom Train omake. Notably, the mission goes much worse. Rin isn't able to destroy the train after Shiemi frees all the souls, and it manages to escape, causing a large amount of property damage. Rin and Shiemi are suspended for disobeying Yukio's orders, and Yukio spends most of the movie hunting down what was left of the train.
  • Alliterative Name: Arthur August(e/o) Angel.
  • All Myths Are True: All Religions Are True: The series mostly focus on Christianity, mainly Roman Catholicism, but there have been demons inspired by Shintoism, Fatal Verses from Buddhist sutras (at least Zen Buddhism anyways), even Greco-Roman minor deities.
    • It was also said in the manga that almost all demons found in other religions are true, Satan just happens to be the lord of them all.
    • In the manga Mephisto explicitly tells Rin he's been known by other names in the past, including Loki.
  • Almighty Janitor: Mainly Rin to begin with, being way stronger than any demon a class of trainees would be exposed to even without any training. In later chapters the entire exwire class could qualify, after having seen and survived several situations far beyond what the Exwire rank usually gets involved in.
    • Ryuji especially got involved with high rank exorcist Lightning and ended up assisting him with a top secret investigation that threatened to shake the Order to it's foundations.
    • Shiemi took out a zombie chimera as easily as an experienced exorcist like Yukio and later single handedly stopped an out of control Rin from killing everyone.
    • Both Ryuji and Izumo join the group to go after Drac in Romania. The other members are Arc Knights and their former teacher.
  • Alternate Timeline: One of Mephisto's powers as the King of Time is the creation of these. Only he can alter events however; he can enable time travel for others, but time paradoxes and changing the past to change the future are impossible for anyone else. It is unknown how many times he's had to redo the timeline to get the result he's looking for, but it's implied to be a lot.
  • And the Adventure Continues: In the anime at least.
  • Animal Battle Aura: The hilarious Rin vs. Ryuji scenes in the anime have these. Rin is a golden tiger, Ryuji's a green-scaled Chinese dragon.
  • Animal Motifs: Konekomaru Miwa and Mamushi Hojo.
  • Anime Catholicism: The series uses Bible verses as spells. Combined that almost every preacher met is that of the badass variety, it can arguably be considered the Trope Codifier.
  • Anthropomorphic Personification: Demons are revealed in the manga to have originally been concepts that resided in Gehenna. The growing numbers and advancement of humanity caused them to gain physical form, and with it develop ego. Satan is the manifestation of Gehenna itself.
  • Anti Anti Christ: Rin is a good-hearted guy who wants to KICK SATAN'S (read: daddy's) ASS.
  • Antihero: It turns out the entire Order of the True Cross is this. It is revealed that there was a secret division that was growing clones to be subjected to various painful experiments with the ultimate goal of them being possessed by the Kings of Hell. And the clones were otherwise children with personalities of their own (in fact, 2 of them grew up to become Father Fujimoto and Arthur Angel, clones of Azazel and Lucifer respectively (though the latter apparently had his mind wiped and does not currently know about his origin). Rin is horrified when he finds out. However, they are still heroic because it is all being done to placate Lucifer, who is threatening to destroy the entire world if they cannot create a body for him that won't decay and rot rapidly, as he is essentially in constant pain due to not having a host that can support his immense power.
    • Many individual characters also qualify.
  • Aristocrats Are Evil: All of the Demon Kings, even the ones siding with humans, look down on humans as inferior and are willing to do horrible things to achieve their goals.
  • Art Evolution: Everyone is noticeably prettier later in the manga, but especially Rin, Mephisto, and Shiro Fujimoto.
  • As the Good Book Says...: Certain Bible verses can be used to banish demons. The trick is knowing which Bible verse is required for which demon. One classmate, trapped by a ghoul, only knows that something from the Book of John can banish it. He recites the entire thing from memory, and it turns out it's the last line that banishes the ghoul.
    • The Aria meister specializes in this.

  • Back to the Early Installment: Near the end of the time travel arc, Rin reaches the events of the first chapter and gets to see the full story and context of what happened that day.
  • Bakeneko and Nekomata: Rin's familiar Kuro (Blacky) is a two-tailed cat Sídhe who can grow to become gigantic.
  • Balking Summoned Spirit: While familiars tend to be loyal to the exorcist they are bound to, that loyalty can immediately vanish in the event that their master loses faith in themselves as shown when Izumo Kamiki summons her familiars while in emotional turmoil over her best friend dropping out only for her familiars to immediately turn against her out of anger for being summoned by somebody so weak in the mind. Once she manages to overcome her grievance, the next time she summons them almost has them immediately turn against her again until they realize she's regained her determination, upon which they go back to obeying her.
  • Barrier Maiden: Suguro Ryuji in the fight against the Impure King. Made fun of by Rin because the role is usually reserved for girls.
  • Beach Episode: 11th episode of the anime, and Chapter 35 to 37 in the manga.
  • Bedmate Reveal: After the battle with the Impure King, Rin wakes up to find Shiemi sleeping next to him.
  • Berserk Button: Surprisingly, Takara manages to push Konekomaru's, sending the latter into a yelling spree. Resulting in a Get A Hold Of Yourself Man from Ryuji.
    • Yukio can't stand having his weaknesses pointed out.
    • Young Shiro is similar to Yukio, but worse. He HATED being called weak, to the point of straight up attacking people over it. He also seemed to hate being bumped into or touched unexpectedly.
  • BFS: Angel's sword isn't huge, but it's definitely the same thick "chopper"-type as Cloud and Allen's.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Suguro Tatsuma pulls off the beginning of one at the end of chapter 24. It backfires.
    • After several volumes of the manga, Neuhaus finally rejoins the cast by pulling one of these.
  • Big Ol' Eyebrows: Kamiki Izumo, causing her to get the nickname Eyebrows. It's a family trait shared with her mother and sister.
  • Big, Screwed-Up Family: The Toudou clan were arrogant, abusive, and took pride in their willingness to do whatever their bosses asked of them without question.
  • Big "WHAT?!": Ryuji in Chapter 28 when told by Rin to ride on the giant Kuro.
  • Bizarchitecture: True Cross Academy.
    • The Order's main base in the Vatican seems to have weird design choices — what is with that big meeting room and table surrounded by huge black pits?!
    • The Impure/Defilement King (a demon in the Decay domain) takes the form of a giant city.
  • "Blind Idiot" Translation: One specific example that ruins foreshadowing for the fact that Arthur is one of the clones of Lucifer. Too bad his name is rendered as "Arstur" in the logs (and for that matter, Lucifer is spelled Lucifel at the top of the page.)
  • Body Horror:
    • Demon mashou boils. And demonic possession/attacks. So much blood...
    • Then came Chapter 32. Toudou can regenerate with Karura's power. He just likes to regenerate his hands and mouth first, to Yukio's abject horror.
    • In chapter 56 there are uber-zombies created by Dr. Gedouin that vary in just how bad they are, but one has a stack of noses running up one side of the body, ear-covered arms, eyes on the shoulders, a huge mouth, multiple arms on one side of the body, what look like smaller faces on the hips.
    • In chapter 98, after Rin's sword breaks and his demonic power housed in it floods back to his body, he is incinerated by it, leaving a charred husk that falls apart when it falls over. He gets better physically a few moments later when his demon heart returns to his body and reforms it though. Mentally though...
    • Section 13 is made of this. While the experimental subjects weren't outwardly mutated like some of the above examples, they still suffered terribly from the drugs and procedures. Some of them even looked to be degrading like Lucifer.
  • Breaking Speech: To Yukio, from an exorcist who turned to The Dark Side. Apparently the guy felt inferior to his father and brother, and after failing to live up to them he resented them for it. Yukio declares he's different.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Chapter 44 begins and ends with Mephisto explicitly holding a conversation with the reader about the plot and the nature of human desires.
  • Break the Haughty: When Izumo's confidence fails, her familiars try to kill her.
  • Broken Masquerade: Demons start appearing en mass and on television, leading to the Order of the True Cross eventually having to give at least an abridged explanation that demons really do exist, despite what various world leaders might want. Once the gate opens fully, everyone starts seeing them.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Rin was bullied and called a demon throughout his childhood due to his Super-Strength and temper.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Rin to Satan. Ryuji to his dad, though the latter wasn't really called for.
  • Calling Your Attacks: Rin starts doing this eventually. It's lampshaded by Suguro, then justified; Shura taught him to do it in order to call on his power more effectively, like a mnemonic device.
    • Arthur and Shura do it too. And Osceola.
  • The Cameo: Renzou's siblings appear for a few seconds in the movie, even though the arc they were introduced in hadn't been animated and didn't seem like it was going to happen due to the first season's Gecko Ending.
  • Cast of Snowflakes: Notably, the only characters who look alike are related (Rin and Yukio, Mephisto, and Amaimon), and even then they're easy to tell apart.
    • The addition of clones has negated this to a degree.
  • Casting Gag:
  • Cerebus Syndrome: The Izumo Rescue arc is horrifying compared to what came before it, and every arc since has gotten steadily Darker and Edgier, with the occasional reprieve. To be fair, the series started with Satan possessing Rin's foster father and then ripping off his fingers before going on to toss Rin into a creepy gate, so perhaps this is where the dark aspects finally started to take center stage. Boomerang Cerebus Syndrome?
  • Chekhov's Boomerang: At the very beginning of the series Father Fujimoto states that someone who's been saved from possession will get possessed again if they don't change themselves. Over 100 chapters after his death from getting possessed by Satan, we find out Satan had possessed him once before during the time travel arc.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The plant nutrient bullets in ch3 come roaring back in ch77, where Yukio uses them once again to trick a demon. Though they aren't as effective of a trick that time.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: The Video Game Dude and Bunny Rabbit Puppet Kid. The Video Game "Dude" is really Kirigakure Shura, a big boobed Upper First Class Exorcist with a seal for a demonsword on her chest, who was Fujimoto's former student and has now become Rin's mentor. Bunny Rabbit Puppet Kid is actually Takara Nemu, a fully trained exorcist, with the same rank as Shura (Upper-first class), hired by Mephisto to act as a "moderator" for the cram school students.
  • Childish Older Sibling: Rin Okumura is a childish, Book Dumb, hot-head and is somewhat of a delinquent. In contrast, his younger twin brother Yukio is a polite, gifted scholar, and serves as one of Rin's teachers at True Cross Academy. This becomes subverted in the manga, where, while both of them have issues with feeling inferior to the other, Rin eventually overcomes his, while Yukio's sanity degrades, and eventually results in him comitting a Face–Heel Turn.
  • Church Militant: The True Cross Order, combined with a Wizarding School.
  • Continuity Lockout: Season 2 of the anime starts right at the start of the Impure King arc without any lead in, and it renders half of the previous season noncanon without giving any nods to it. For viewers who have only ever watched the anime, it can be rather confusing why everyone hates Rin again.
  • Continuity Nod: In Episode 19, Rin states how cooking is his only productive skill. Yukio mentions quietly how he said the exact same thing, which he did in the camping episode.
  • Cooking Duel: Rin and Ukobach have one in the anime after Rin inadvertently traipsed all over his territory (being the dorm kitchen).
  • Cool-Down Hug: Fujimoto gives one to Rin in a childhood flashback when the latter goes berserk over another boy calling him a "demon" behind his back.
    • In Chapter 26, Shiemi gives one to Rin after he invokes I Am a Monster on her, telling her to stay away.
    • And in the anime, Shiemi gives him one in Episode 16 to stop his berserk mode.
  • Cool Mask: Lucifer, because his face was blackened by illness. Said mask has been taken off in Chapter 56, and it's seen on a table beside his bed. Parodied in an omake.
  • Cool Old Lady: The old lady who runs the inn in Aomori. She assumes that Rin and Yukio are some sort of gay couple and not only doesn't mind, but encourages them. Yukio is not amused and Rin doesn't even notice.
    • Lucy Yang, arc knight known as the Wielder of Phantoms and all around Badass since Shiro was a newbie.
  • Crossover Cosmology: Quite a bit of Buddhist and Shinto is mixed in as well. Later chapters give us glimpses of other religions as well. Justified as all deities are real and fall under the umbrella of Demons.
  • Crystal Prison: In the anime, Rin gets this treatment when the True Cross Order find out that he's the son of Satan.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Not in the manga, but the anime version of Rin with his sword drawn vs. Amaimon is a huge one in the former's favor. You can clearly see how the latter went from stomping the entire cast to barely keeping up the defensive. Also overlaps with No-Holds-Barred Beatdown. In the manga: Rin vs. Amaimon in Gehenna was also heavily in Amaimon's favor. Mephisto arranged this so Rin would know that if he couldn't touch the seventh-toughest demon in hell he had no chance of going against their daddy.
    • Shiemi of all people, delivers one to her chimera zombie opponent in Chapter 58.
    • Satan effectively did this to the Order when he seized section 13.
    • The Devil*Punisher one-shots a room full of chimera zombies.
  • Custom Uniform: Many
    • Angel has an extremely fancy uniform.
    Rin: ...when I become Paladin, I won't be dressing like a fashion reject.
    Angel: You misunderstand. I had this outfit tailor-made.
    • None of the main characters wears their uniform like the others. They use shirts, t-shirts, over the knee socks and wear ties or ribbons in their own way to stand out from the rest, according to their personality.
    • Shura rarely wears her uniform, preferring shorts and a bikini top. She's later made to wear a "sexy" version of the standard uniform by Mephisto while acting as his bodyguard.
    • Lightning wears a poncho over whatever else he's wearing.
    • In the past, former Paladin Abel Franken also wore a fancier than average uniform, though at least it was black.
  • Cutting the Knot: In Chapter 71, Lightning gives Ryuji a Secret Test of Character that ends up calling out the Impure Baron, who he could have easily have gotten rid of by tearing the summoning card. [[Stating the Simple Solution He also points out that he could have exorcised the demon reader card rather than playing along with it in the first place.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Aside from the protagonist, there are plenty of demons around that simply want to exist and not bother anyone. Kuro is one of these.
    • Greenmen by and large seem benign.
  • Dark Lord on Life Support: Lucifer. It seems to be a lesser version of the same thing that plagues his father, Satan; he's too powerful for a human body that it decays around him with every use of power. In the present he has an assembly line of perfected clones and elixir to keep him going.
  • Dark Secret:
    • Until Blue Night, Section 13 attempted to mass-produced clones of the demon kings.
    • The Order, or at least Section 13, is directly responsible for Satan and Rin both.
  • Deadpan Door Shut: After being tasked with staying in the classroom, which undergoes a blackout, Shima tries to leave and opens the door to witness a ghoul standing behind it. He shuts it, proclaiming that his eyes must be playing tricks on him, before the ghoul breaks it down and sends him running behind Rin.
  • Demonic Possession: Any demon's only way into Assiah.
    • Happens to Shiro Fujimoto. He is possessed by Satan until he kills himself to save Rin.
    • Happens to Konekomaru Miwa by Gale and Yukio by Satan in the anime.
    • Izumo's mother became possessed by the Nine-Tailed Fox as a result of her depression.
    • Rin is an odd case where he essentially possesses himself.
  • Demon Lords and Archdevils: The Eight Demon Kings of Gehenna. In descending order of age and power there is Lucifer King of Light, Samael(Mephisto) King of Time and Space, Azazel King of Air and Spirits, Iblis King of Fire, Egyn King of Water, Astaroth King of Rot, Amaimon King of Earth, and Beelzebub King of Insects. There are also two Emperors, Shemihaza Emperor of Creation, and Armumahel Emperor of Destruction, who are equal in power to the Kings but seem to exist outside of the traditional demon hierarchy as we know it.
  • Demon Slaying: Exorcists' main job is eliminating demons that manifest in the human world and endanger humans.
  • Devil, but No God: We have seen demons and Satan is the very real enemy of humanity, but no holy beings have been seen yet within the setting. However, Bible verses can be used to banish demons, and holy objects can be used as weapons, so it is ambiguous.
    • Recited Christian scriptures assume there is a god. Recited Buddhist scriptures assume there was Buddha. Maybe it's all a matter of faith and all religions are true?
    • If Satan is the Ultimate Evil in the underworld, could there be a Uber-God who is the ultimate good?
      • Turns out, he's not the Ultimate Evil, he's the Ultimate Being, who just so happens to be evil today.
    • One anime episode has the cast baking a birthday cake for a classmate. Rin accidentally bakes a Christmas cake first. When the class realizes the mistake, they drop it off at Mephisto's office for him to eat instead, at which point he gleefully hangs a lampshade on the whole absurd situation.
    • Some demons are ambivalent or even benevolent towards humans, and most "holy objects" are artifacts related to them. Holy water is produced from one of the demonic founders of the True Cross Order, Armumahel. And this Satan isn't the one from the Bible, he is avatar of Gehenna itself, who gained body and consciosness by accidentally hijacking one of Lucifer's cloned bodies. Lucifer calls him the only God, and he names himself Satan after reading some religious materials. It's not yet revealed how exactly do holy verses work, but Lightning knows how to create new ones, which makes them somewhat similar to spells (after all, he's not very fit to count as saint, so that his words could become new prayer). In short, while using Christian terminology, these 'demons' and 'Gehenna' are more akin to paganistic or Eastern spirits and spiritual world, where there's no intrinsic difference and clear line between good, neutral, evil and just selfish entities.
  • Digging Yourself Deeper: When Rin's friends learn that he is the son of Satan, he tries to tell Shiemi that he's basically a normal human just like her, right as his demonic tail whips in front of him. He grabs it in frustration and admits he's not being very convincing.
    • Yukio started doing this arguably as early as Aomori, but definitely by the wedding in Kyoto, in regards to his mental health and his quest for answers.
  • Driven to Suicide: After Learning that his adopted father was an experimental body for a demon but otherwise learning nothing that he was looking for, and then hurting Shiemi after she tries to comfort him and says the wrong thing, Yukio runs out and shoots himself. Satan saves him.
  • Dying as Yourself: Izumo's mother returns to how she used to be after taking the Nine-Tails back so it dies with her rather than possess her daughter.
  • Dying Moment of Awesome: Fujimoto's final scene, as pointed out in the second chapter:
    Yukio: What were his final moments like?
    Rin: He was awesome.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: A chibified version of Mephisto appears on the front of Yukio's first-aid box in episode 1 of the anime, prior to his formal introduction.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: A minor example, but the True Cross Academy blazers start out being dark green (as you can see in the page image at the top), but quickly become black.
  • Elaborate University High: True Cross Academy owns this trope, since it also has an amusement park, a freaking town based around it and lots of secret passages due to being an important base for the True Cross Order in Japan. And everything is BIIIIIG!
  • Elemental Powers: According to the Demon Elements there are five elements:
    • Ignis (Fire): Weak to Water and Strong against Decay
    • Urere (Decay): Weak to Fire and Strong against Air
    • Aer (Air): Weak to Decay and Strong against Earth
    • Humus (Earth): Weak to Air and Strong against Water
    • Aqua (Water): Weak to Earth and Strong against Fire
    • There are Eight Demon Kings as well, most falling under the above elements, except for Beelzebub (Insect), Azazel (Spirit), Samael (Time/Space), and Lucifer (Light). They also seem to qualify as elements and Azazel is the King of Air as much as Spirits.
  • Energy Absorption: If one uses an elemental attack on a demon of the same element, if the attack is not strong enough the demon will absorb it.
  • Everyone Knew Already: Mephisto being a demon and one of Satan's sons.
  • Extra Parent Conception: Due to the nature of demonic possession all children of a human and a demon are this, with genes coming from the human parent, the demon, ""and"" the demon's host body.
    • Interestingly, Satan won't even acknowledge Yukio as his son due to his seemingly having inherited nothing from Satan himself.
  • Eye-Obscuring Hat: Donned by Lewin Light (a.k.a. Lightning)
  • Face–Heel Turn: Ryuji's serpent-wielding relative, who cannot stand that the exorcists are allowing the son of Satan to live.
  • Face of a Thug: Rin and Ryuji. Ryuji's father was said to have one as well. It fades as time passes.
  • Fake Defector: Renzou Shima is revealed to have joined the Illuminati on the True Cross Academy's orders and begins screwing over the protagonists in Chapter 48]]. Then it turns out the enemy knew all along and he's forced back to the Academy to be stuck in the middle of the two powers to be used by both of them. And all this after the entire team was pretty much emotionally smashed to pieces...and he tries to pretend nothing changed and all is good. They don't take it well.
  • Familiar: Tamer class exorcists have them. Among the main cast Rin has Kuro, a cat Sídhe, Shiemi has Nii-chan, a Greenman, while Izumo has two Byakko and a bunch of sub-familiars.
    • Arthur Angel's sword talks to him just prior to battles, usually an admonishment about how he's working too hard.
    • Shima turns out to have one he kept secret, much to everyone's surprise. Not only is Yamantaka an incredibly powerful high level demon, but according to Shima it's been his familiar since he was a child. Later information reveals it is bound to the Shima family in some special way and was previously bound to Takezou.
    • Lewin has contracts with an unknown number of Azazel kin. He mainly summons wind sprites, which are very versatile and can be used to place trackers on suspects. Later he summons General Frost to help out against the Cyclops enemy. Most recently it was revealed that he also has contracts with storm gods Vayu and Indra, the highest level kin of Azazel, and had bound them to Yukio via Morinas contract.
  • Family Extermination: Almost the entire Toudou family was wiped out on the Blue Night. But the culprit wasn't Satan; Saburota Toudou killed his entire family aside from himself and his daughter Homare.
  • Fan Boy: Played straight with Gedouin to Lucifer, complete with sparkles and delusional fantasies. Lucifer seems to ignore this.
  • Fangs Are Evil: Demons have these, along with Pointy Ears.
  • Fantastic Racism: When Rin's friends find out he's the son of Satan, things get... awkward.
    • Later subverted in that it's not the fact that he is part demon that gets to them, it's that he's part Satan.
      • Subverted again by Ryuji. Turns out most of his anger has to do with Rin deciding to shoulder such a burden secretly by himself, something that Ryuji has complained about before.
      • Also subverted with Izumo and Shiemi. Izumo didn't really give a damn about it , while Shiemi was more hurt by the fact that Rin, her first friend, didn't tell her something so important and took it a little too personally.
      • Subverted as well with Shima, who, while definitely being freaked out by Rin being the Son of Satan thing, was more worried about how troublesome being around Rin would be. After the two ate dinner together Shima realized that Rin was a genuinely good person and that it would "be more troublesome trying to avoid him".
    • Played completely straight and justified in Konekomaru's case though. His entire family was killed on the Blue Night and having as much resentment against Rin as he did was only to be expected, and when he finally gets over it, the Friendship Moment between the two is pretty friggin heartwarming.
    • While most of the examples of this trope are subverted as listed above, the anime adaptation plays this trope completely straight once Rin's friends find out.
    • Angel and Neuhaus play this trope completely straight - while other exorcists don't mind demons that aren't actively hostile or harmful towards humans, Angel hates demons in general and never has anything nice to say to Mephisto or Rin despite their fight against Satan while Neuhaus hates anything related to Satan due to losing his family and eye in the Blue Night.
    • Yukio has shades of this, though far more subtle than Angel or his father in his youth. He never outright declares hatred for demons, but it's heavily implied he's internalized those feelings and they contribute to the way he treats Rin and himself. Notably, he's very happy when the Illuminati confirm his humanity once and for all.
  • Fantastic Rank System: The Exorcists have one.
    • There are five meisters, or specialties, one can pursue:
      • Arias chant Fatal Verses
      • Knights specialize in close combat
      • Dragoons have firearms
      • Doctors use herbs and medicines to fight possessions and also act as medics
      • Tamers convince less hostile demons to lend their power to humans.
    • Most exorcists have multiple meisters, and the highest rank, that of Paladin, requires all five.
    • In terms of actual ranks we've seen:
      • Pages are total newbies just beginning training
      • Exwires are approved to start missions under supervision, but are still students
      • Exorcists make up most of the Order's forces. They do everything from combat to research and development to inter branch law enforcement, and carry ranks of 1st, 2nd, or 3rd class and Upper, Middle, or Lower rank, depending on their capabilities and their exam score.
      • Arc Knights sit with the highest authority in the Order and make command decisions, and are also typically very strong fighters.
      • Paladin is the highest rank of exorcist, and requires having all meisters.
  • A Father to His Men: Ryuji's dad. Whose name, for the record, is Suguro Tatsuma.
    • Shiro Fujimoto was this to Yukio, Shura, and most of his associates in raising the twins.
  • Fireball Eyeballs: Rin and Satan have these in various color pages. In Chapter 30, when Yukio was about to be killed by Toudou, he got these for a few pages.
  • Fire Purifies: In the Koyoto Saga, Rin's flames engulf the entire area and purify it of the demonic rot, while leaving everyone on the mountain unharmed.
  • Flaming Sword: Kurikara, since it currently contains Rin's blue flames.
  • Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling:
    Shiemi: You look like the older one!
    Yukio: Yes, it is easy to mistake.
    Rin: [twitches]
    • Somewhat subverted later when Yukio proves to be far less stable than he first appeared.
    • The Shima family shows shades of this too, with Renzou and Kinzou being fairly foolish while Juuzou is responsible.
  • Foreshadowing: At one point, Yukio is trying everything he can to awaken his demon genes, doing stuff like nearly drowning himself and throwing himself off a tall building (which works momentarily). He nearly shoots himself in the head moments after before getting stopped by a phone call. Mephisto tells him to cut it out, and we don't know if his last attempt would have worked. That is until he attempts to seriously kill himself, at which point those powers he was trying to awaken did so and turned out to be Satan.
    • Near the beginning of the story when all the characters are still fresh students and testing their aptitude for demon summoning, Bon and Konekomaru both say they can't naturally summon anything while holding summoning paper. They turn to Shima, not holding any paper, who simply smiles and shrugs. It turns out he can naturally summon a high level familiar without even needing summoning paper, which he hides until he reveals his role as a double agent for the Illuminati.
    • Early on while Yukio and Shura are talking during their competition in the batting cage, Shura talks about how suppressing your anger and negative emotions is a bad trait for an exorcist to have as it makes them more vulnerable possession, and that Rin might even make a good exorcist because he didn't bottle his emotions. Many chapters later Rin's demon heart is released in full, and along with it a demon personality containing all the negative emotions he'd suppressed.
  • Friendlessness Insult: Bon and Izumo bicker throughout their training exercises, which prompts Yukio to make the whole class stay after school overnight for a team bonding exercise. Bon blames Izumo for their predicament, due to her arrogant and belittling outlook on everyone (excluding Paku) and calls her a witch, to which she happily agrees. However, when he states out that's exactly the reason why she doesn't have any friends, she has no retort.
  • Funny Background Event: While Bon and Shima are talking to each other right after Rin destroyed the Impure King, Rin is giving Konekomaru a somewhat vigorous head rub with Konekomaru telling him it doesn't feel good and to stop.
  • Gecko Ending: Around episode 15 the anime splits from its source material to make an original storyline so the season could have a proper "ending", since it Overtook the Manga. As of the second anime, all of that is ignored, however.
  • Get A Hold Of Yourself Man: Ryuji finds himself doing this (nonviolently) for Konekomaru who just had his Berserk Button pushed by Takara.
  • Good Thing You Can Heal: Angel chops Rin's foot off to control him during his "trial", knowing he'll be fine.
    • In the Beyond the Snow arc Rin get's shot repeatedly and is up in seconds. Only minutes later he's reduced to a charred skeleton and once again regenerates in minutes.
    • Having been a test subject for elixir turns out to have given Shiro faster than average healing, allowing him to survive cutting his own throat the first time Satan possessed him.
  • Gratuitous Foreign Language: Gratuitous Polish in Episode 20: "Nie popuszcz... takiego, powi...zanego z Szatanem". Not only is it written incorrectly, but also one of characters translates it as "Satan's kin must die"(lit. "Potomek szatana musi umrze...")
  • Gratuitous German: Aside from Mephisto's Eins Zwei Drei, the manga has now "Das stärkste Gefängnis". Mephisto likes German.
  • Half-Human Hybrid: Rin and Yukio.
    • Apparently, there's a lot of demon-blooded exorcists.
    • The Grigori have Nephilim descendants. Said descendants are the ones running the True Cross Order and acting in place of the three original Grigori. Azazel's bloodline is said to have died out generations ago however.
  • Harmful Healing: How Yukio exploits a Zombie Chimera's healing factor. It absorbs whatever is around it as it regenerates so he kept shooting it down to the ground so that it tried to absorb the alloy. It pinned itself to the floor permanently.
    • This is heavily implied to be what finished Yuri off.
  • The Hecate Sisters: The Moriyama family unit fits this despite being three consecutive generations rather than sisters, with Shiemi as the Maiden, her mom as the Mother, and her grandma as the Crone.
  • Hero Insurance: Referenced in ch68 when Yukio says the Order will pay for the damages, suggesting there is something of this set up for exorcists in case things get particularly messy.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: The trope-naming passage is quoted in reference to Rin and Yukio. Further noted that this is a problem for most Exorcists who could become demons because of their inner hatred or repressed feelings.
  • High School: True Cross Academy is a rather grand one, looking rather like a giant castle. It's also secretly the Japanese headquarters for the Exorcists, though most of the students at the school are completely unaffiliated with them, most not even being aware of the existence of demons. Interestingly, we rarely see any of the actual school going ons, the majority of the time shown is just the exorcist "cram school" class.
  • Holy Burns Evil: Holy water acts like acid to demons, and so it also affects the half-demon main character. This leads to a rather amusing scene where the Exwires are soaked down with the stuff to protect them, and the person doing the soaking very purposefully avoids Rin, awkwardly explaining it as "He's allergic to holy water." Which, technically speaking, is true, but...
  • Holy Water: Holy water is the traditional acid-to-demons variety, and is later revealed to not be made with "holy" power, but rather be synthesized from crystalized bits of Armumahel, giving it power to harm demons on the spiritual plane.
  • Hot for Student: Yukio to Shiemi. Though really they're about the same age.
  • How Dad Met Mom: The Time Travel Arc focuses on the twins's mother, Yuri Egin, how she came to know Shirou Fujimoto and Satan, and the events leading to their birth.
  • Humans Are Special: Why Mephisto's on the Exorcists' side: "The shameless greed the Japanese have for entertainment is spellbinding!! [...] The imaginations and creations of human beings have as much potential as the magical powers of demons..."
  • Hypocritical Humour: Mephisto, in Episode 6.
    Rin: But why the hell does a school cafeteria need first-class food?
    Mephisto: Food is culture! Experiencing the highest-end food will make your lives fuller! [opens a cup of instant ramen and eats it]
    • But then again, there is a bit of Fridge Brilliance in that. Mephisto is [[Really 700 Years Old actually centuries old and, knowing his love of culture, has probably already experienced all of the "highest-end food." Now he just wants to sit back and eat ramen. Nothing hypocritical about that. The scene is still an example though.
  • I Am a Monster: Rin says a variation of this in Episode 9.
    Rin: My wounds have always healed quickly. And now I really am a monster.
    • And then word for word in Chapter 26 before Rin and Shiemi make up.
    • Yukio comes to think this way about himself, though more in terms of being a bad/evil person.
  • Idiot Ball: Rin grabs hold of it in the anime when at one point Konekomaru gets possessed by a demon. He chases after Konekomaru with his sword drawn, and when stopped by the others, instead of explaining himself, he just shoots his fire at the demon when it reappears and almost burns Konekomaru, which doesn't raise the others already currently low trust in him.
    • This happens a lot to Rin in the beginning.
  • I Have Many Names: "Mephisto" is just the latest, he's also been called Loki, Raven, and plain ol' Trickster.
  • The Illuminati: Are responsible for creating a Gate to Gehenna, and also for killing a town full of tourists, among other things.
  • Imagine Spot: Gedouin has a little fantasy about Lucifer hugging a much better looking version of him.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: Justified in Rin's case, as said katana seals his demon powers.
  • Keeping Secrets Sucks: Keeping secrets has proven harmful to several characters.
    • Having to lie to his brother for so long did a number on Yukio's ability to trust people at all.
    • Bon witnessed the death of a man who helped raise the Okumura twins at the hands of his own master, and feels horribly guilty for not being able to come clean about it due to being part of a top secret investigation.
    • Shirou's inability to open up to Yuri prevented him from keeping her away from Satan.
  • Kick the Dog: In Episode 2, Satan possesses Rin's adoptive father (which has some unsettling side-effects), taunts him while further mutilating his host, and promptly tosses the terrified kid into the gate to Gehenna.
  • Lawful Stupid: In the anime, Angel tries to kill Rin right after the kid saved the day by defeating Amaimon.
    • In Episode 20, Angel also stops Mephisto (with a firetruck) from saving several student hostages because he's under suspicion for performing acts forbidden by the Vatican. What, the moron couldn't give him another minute.
  • Light Is Not Good: Lucifer is the King of Light, and he is not a good guy.
  • Limp and Livid: Satan in Fujimoto's body, especially when he unleashes his disconcerting Evil Laugh.
  • Love Triangle: Both Rin and Yukio have a crush on Shiemi. Shiemi spends the majority of the series completely unaware of this, though she cares for both of them greatly.
    • Izumo has a pretty obvious crush on Rin...who, so far, only notices Shiemi.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Mephisto revealed to Rin that he and Amaimon are also sons of Satan (second and sixth, respectively).
  • Lying Heroes, Honest Villains: Many of the protagonists lie frequently, notably Yukio, Lewin, Shima Renzou, and Shirou Fujimoto, for reasons ranging from personal quirks to necessity. By contrast most of the villains tend to tell the truth, albeit a warped version of it rife with ego and Blue-and-Orange Morality.
  • Make Them Rot: Astaroth, the King of Rot, and his kin. He has yet to make an appearance himself (except in the anime, where he posses the bully in episode 1 instead of the nameless demon from the manga) but his "pet", the Impure King, was a major antagonist.
  • Marshmallow Hell: A half-example. In Chapter 10 Shura clutches Rin's head under her arm, giving him a faceful of her left boob. The other male students were envious. Strangely though, Rin doesn't really react.
  • Meaningful Name: The new Paladin is called Arthur Angel. Averted, as he mocks Shura and Shiro and is racist to Rin.
    • Later un-Averted with the revelation the Arthur is a clone of Lucifer, whose Kin include seraphim.
    • Shura means 'carnage/bloodshed'. She got that name from Shiro for attacking a lot of animals and people with a sword when she was a child. Kind of averted since he didn't intend to give her a meaningful name, he just named her for the type of demon she was mistaken for so he'd have something to put in his report.
    • Mamushi means 'pit viper' in Japanese.
    • Konekomaru's name can be translated to "circle of kittens".
    • Rin, when written in kanji, can be read as phosphorus, an igniting compound in chemistry. In turn, phosphorus comes from the Greek word "light-bearer" and light-bearer is another term used to describe the fallen angel Lucifer. It turns out he was named for Rinka, which was Satan before he grew an ego.
    • Subverted with Shima. His given name, Renzou, can mean "pure" or "honest". Shima is, of course, known better for his perverted antics and being a liar.
  • Mega Neko: Kuro, Rin's demonically adorable familiar. In Sleep-Mode Size he's a Head Pet.
  • Miko: Izumo is quite proud of her heritage as a shrine maiden.
  • Mistaken for Gay: When Rin and Yukio stay at an old inn in a town in the middle of nowhere, the old lady running the inn assumes they are a gay couple coming for a hook up. While she seems perfectly accepting of it, Yukio is not amused. Rin doesn't even catch the implication though.
  • More Hero than Thou: What the other students think Rin is playing up when he appears to be taking unnecessary risks by fighting alone ("Don't forget you have friends!") when he's actually hiding his demonic powers, especially from the guy who has a blood feud against Satan. Having everyone think that he either doesn't trust them or that he's being a glory-hound is really annoying to Rin.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Rin and Yukio.
    • Mephisto is this for many fans.
    • Later chapters give us Lewin "Lightning" Light, more Shiro Fujimoto, Osceola Redarm, and most recently two of Azazel's highest ranked Kin, Vayu and Indra.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Shura's everyday appearance in a nutshell. Hilariously, Kato deliberately invoked it...but isn't sure if she did well (ie she just made sure she showed a lot of skin).
    • Iblis turns out to be hot in more than an elemental sense.
  • Multi-Denominational Team: In addition to Catholic priests, there are Buddhist monks and Shinto mikos. Shiemi could count as a shaman/apothecary.
    • We see this in a big way for Operation Blue Lightning.
  • Multigenerational Household: Saburota Toudou lived in a house with his father, brothers, wife, and daughter up until he murdered everyone except his daughter.
  • Mundane Made Awesome: The cooking battle between Rin and Ukobach in the anime.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: During the Impure King arc, Shiemi goes through this when it hits her that she and everyone else abandoned Rin in his time of emotional need. It's not until he's literally questioning whether he should even be alive as the Order's higher ups plan to execute him, that she realizes what she's done.
  • Myth Arc: Not one single chapter goes by, not even mainly breather episodes like ch40 and ch68 without the plot moving forward in one way or another. And not just the current plot, but the overall plot has been moving forward since the first chapter and early chapters even foreshadow later arcs. A good example is during ch5, when Ryuji confronts Izumo, we get a quick flash of a woman that looks a lot like her looking very deranged, with Izumo staring up in horror at her with a small girl that also looks like her on her lap. It takes until the Inari arc, about forty-five chapters later to find out what that was about.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Many considering the number of well know demon names that come up.
  • Neglected Garden: Shiemi's grief and frustration with her mother after the death of her grandmother leads her grandmother's garden, now in Shiemi's care, to become infested with a demon.
  • No Eye in Magic: Konekomaru pulls this off quite nicely in chapter 43 by taking off his glasses so the demon couldn't make him see his fear.
  • No One Gets Left Behind: Rin is very insistent about this, refusing to leave Izumo behind in the Illuminati arc even when she flat-out tells him to. Rin and Ryuji are both like this with Renzo. Even at the end, Ryuji intends to keep going after Renzo until he a) brings him back or b) gets a proper answer out of him.
  • "Not So Different" Remark: The fifth episode/fourth chapter has Ryuji's friends remarking that he and Rin are quite similar in overall attitude, despite their differences in terms of grades. Even their prime motivation of defeating Satan overlap, which brings them into further conflict. However, it eventually turns out they are Not So Similar after all.
    • Despite being Polar Opposite Twins most of the time, Rin and Yukio share a deep sense of personal insecurity and feelings of inferiority to one another.
  • Occult Blue Eyes: Rin Okumura has blue eyes that sometimes change to be slitted and colored like his flames (matches the demonic type as the son of Satan).
    • Though Yukio's eyes are typically green, they change to Satan's blue slitted eyes when he is in imminent danger of dying. Egyn explains that this is because his left eye is used by Satan to peer into Assiah.
  • Older Than They Look: Toudou got younger after swallowing Karura. He started out as a middle-aged man and currently looks about eighteen.
    • Mephisto, Amaimon, Lucifer, and most high level demons actually.
    • Shura is in her late twenties, but looks much younger. This is actually part of her pact with Hachiro.
  • One Cast Member per Cover: The covers of volumes 1-12 feature a different character each. From volume 13 on, the covers are either more than one character or one character getting another to themselves.
  • Oneesama: Houjou Mamushi to her sibs.
  • The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: Lucifer outright refuses to allow Rin or Yukio to come to harm at first because Rin is for their father to defeat.
  • Otaku: Mephisto. His room makes Yubaba's baby's nursery look like a bare cell.
  • Our Angels Are Different: They're demons and are Kin of the King of Light.
  • Our Demons Are Different: The humanoid ones have elf ears and tails. The other ones range from foxes, ghoulish-sewn-together-bodies, cats, plant... things, anthropomorphic phoenixes, and giant fungus buildings. In this universe all supernatural beings are demons, even if humans call them other things like gods, angels, ghosts, etc.
  • Our Ghouls Are Creepier: Ghouls are lesser demons that are similar to but not as strong as zombies. The key difference is that ghouls possess corpses and zombies possess necrotic living bodies. Unlike some zombies, ghouls never possess speech and they don't eat humans either, but their touch can cause a healthy body to start rotting. Both creatures are noted to be slow and dispatchable by a weapon made from holy silver or a powerful firearm, but ghouls are also sensitive to a fatal verse from the Gospel of John.
  • Our Zombies Are Different: Zombies differ from ghouls in that they are living humans being parasited on by demons, craving flesh and requiring Head Shots to kill.
  • Parents as People: A recurring theme; Shiemi's mother, Suguro Tatsuma, the Shima family, Izumo's mother, and even Shiro are shown as people as much as parents, and their personal quirks and failings, just as much as their successes, have shaped the story and their children.
  • Pimp Duds: Mephisto Pheles.
    • Arthur and his custom uniform.
    • Lucifer and the Illuminati have pretty cool uniforms too.
  • Playing with Fire: Rin, Satan, Iblis, and pretty much all fire demons and Tamers who work with them.
  • Portal to the Past: Time travel works exactly the same as the inter spacial doors; there's a special key that turns every door it's used on into a portal across time and space.
  • Power Limiter: Rin's katana is a limiter to his demonic power. When sheathed the only things that remain are slightly pointy ears and a tail. When he takes it out—all hell breaks loose around him. Quite literally.
    • All powerful demons seem to try to have this in place so they don't damage or destroy their hosts. This is also a consequence of the need to hide their "Demon Heart", which acts as both their major weak point and lets them access their true form and all of their powers.
    • Rin's sword was even more of limiter than previously thought as his Demon Heart being inside it prevented him from accessing the full flame even with it drawn. When it broke all his power came roaring back and overwhelmed him.
  • Possession Burnout: Anyone possessed by Satan.
    • Later revealed that all the Demon Kings cause this, albeit at varying speeds.
  • Posthumous Character: Fujimoto Shiro, who adopted and raised Rin and Yukio, is later developed to be, not only in the church of badass preachers, but THE Badass Preacher.
    • Rin, and the audience, don't learn much about Yuri Egin until years after her presumed death.
  • Pretty Boy: Angel is intentionally drawn in this manner. Lucifer, too. Lampshaded by Gedouin, who compares his appearance to a shining star, complete with the sparkles. This is not a coincidence.
  • Primal Stance: Rin in his first confrontation with Amaimon.
  • Powers via Possession: Konekomaru gains these briefly when he is possessed by Gale in Episode 17.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Konekomaru soundly delivers this to EVERY SINGLE ONE of his classmates, and in the middle of a battle no less.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: The Hojo family has snake tattoos to go with their serpent familiars, not to mention Hellish Pupils. And the daughters certainly act like a bunch of smug snakes to the other members of Myoo Dharani.
    • One of them turns traitor, but this later turns into a subversion, as she was doing so in response to the perceived threat of Mephisto concealing the Eyes of the Impure King and keeping the son of Satan alive, as well as being manipulated by Toudou.
    • Amaimon also has an alternate, more demonic form which has some lizard aspects to it when he unleashes his true power.
    • Hachiro, who is both a hydra dragon god and cursed generations of women to bear children and die young.
  • Restraining Bolt: The ring on Rin's tail seems to serve as one: when Shura begins to recite certain verses, it quickly drains him of his power.
  • Revenge by Proxy:
    • Neuhaus, a survivor of the "Blue Night" in which Satan went on a killing spree, took it upon himself to try to kill Rin, the son of Satan.
    • Anime only, Konekomaru attempted to do this to Rin while possessed by Gale in order to avenge his parents. Ultimately, though, he realizes that killing Rin won't bring back his parents, so he gives it up.
  • Rule 63: Kato Kazue, the creator, posted on Twitter sketches she made of the main cast gender swapped.
  • School Club Front: The Exorcists train the students exorcists in the academy under the guise of a "Cram-Class".
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: Ryuji's dad, in a flashback, helped Fujimoto escape with the Koumaken despite the law that all intruders to the sect who know about the Koumaken must be killed.
    • Also when Shura orders Rin's classmates to break him out of prison despite the Vatican's decision to execute Rin.
    • Shiro lied about Shura's origins in his report to keep her safe.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: The Eyes of the Impure King, an ancient demon so powerful that just these two eyeballs expel a flood of miasma.
    • The Myou Dha sect used itself to seal the Impure King, so the Myou Dha was the can.
    • At one point, there was a flame demon, Kurara, sealed in Koumaken, but it's since left. Koumaken's still a Can, being used to hold Rin's demon heart.
  • Ship Tease: A little, with a dash of Foe Romance Subtext, with Mephisto and Shura in the manga. When Shura tries to interrogate him, it at first looks like she's flirting with him, and then she goes ahead and straddles him. He calls the view of her chest "a nice view" and eventually tells her that "it would be a pity if a beautiful woman like [her] died at such a young age." And, when she backs off and leaves the room, he muses, "how lovely" in a rather ambiguous fashion. She then concludes that Mephisto will protect Rin from execution. Yeah. Theirs is an odd relationship...
    • Shiemi gets a fair amount with each of the twins. Not that she's aware.
    • In the past Shiro and Yuri had quite a bit of this.
  • Shoot the Hostage: When Shiemi is drained by a pansy demon, it uses her body as a shield. Yukio pulls out his gun, and the demon taunts he wouldn't shoot Shiemi. He does. The pansy demon freaks out and flees. Rin is reasonably pissed off, but Shiemi is fine in the end. Yukio reveals to Rin that he used red dye bullets, having no intention of harming Shiemi at all.
  • Short Range Guy, Long Range Guy: The Okumura twins. The Hot-Blooded Rin uses a katana, while his calmer brother Yukio prefers guns. Ultimately subverted though, considering the fact they rarely, if ever, fight together. And when it does happen, Yukio does his best to stop Rin from "interfering". Only in ch3 has it been truly played straight, if briefly.
  • Shotguns Are Just Better: Rin's dad uses one in episode two. To fight a hoard of demons. And does pretty well.
  • Shout-Out:
  • The Short Guy with Glasses: Konekomaru to a T.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!!: Rin finally shuts Gedouin up with a punch to the face.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Women in this series overwhelmingly prefer good guys.
    • Both of the Okumura twins, who Shiemi admires, are good people who she genuinely gets along with.
    • Izumo was at one point implied to have a crush on Rin, who has saved and comforted her in the past.
    • Yuri Egin greatly preferred the outwardly prickly but actually decent Shirou over the violent and unpredictable Satan.
    • Yuri's best friend Rick was one of the nicest people in the series and one of the few to have been Happily Married.
  • Slasher Smile: Several characters, both human and demon, have shown these.
    • Mephisto at times, especially when he's playing up the "clown" aspect of his persona.
    • Amaimon when he's excited sometimes gets one of these.
    • Demon!Rin, seen inside of Rin's head, has a particularly toothy one.
    • Yukio is seen sporting one on the cover of Jump SQ.
  • Spell My Name With An S: It been stated by the creator that The Paladin's middle initial is 'A' not 'O' like some fans has believed.
  • Stab the Scorpion: When confronted by his human brother about his existence, Rin draws his sword and charges... to kill a demon behind him. "I am not low enough to fight my own brother."
  • Standard Female Grab Area: This trope is pulled on Shura of all people, when Arthur Angel grabs her by the wrist from behind while they are fighting. A bit justified considering the wrist he was holding was connected to her sword hand and he had his own sword against her neck.
    • In chapter five, Rin grabs Shiemi by the arm when telling her to stop being Izumo's errand girl.
  • The Strategist: Konekomaru
  • Super-Strength: Rin. Aside from headbutting a giant cat-demon into submission, he's also seen lifting a car with no discernable effort.
    • Satan also has this, as we see when he breaks his way out of his containment cell in Section 13 by forcing open the foot thick cell door with brute strength.
  • Suppressed History: There are no official records of Asylum or Section 13. It also seems that Shiro's records have been tampered with, identifying him as Paladin by the time he met Shura when he wasn't.
    • No one but Mephisto and Shiro (and Rin) would ever know about Yuri's good intentions, only the result of her failure.
  • Stripperific: Shura could count as this. Kind of justified because she needs to have free access to her tattoos when she has to take something from their dimensional pockets... but not much.
    • Shura again, but this time it's Mephisto's fault. She's given a custom "sexy" uniform to wear while acting as his security detail.
  • Soul Jar: Rin's sword holds his "demon heart".
  • Take a Third Option: Subverted initially when Rin first meets Mephisto. He offers that Rin either kill or be killed, and later jokingly adds that Rin could always kill himself too. Rin declines, and demands to be an Exorcist instead.
    Mephisto: The way I see it, you have two options. You can either be killed by us, or you can kill us and run away. Or, of course, you could just kill yourself, and save us the trouble, so that's three options you have. So, which one do you choose?
    Rin: Make me one of you. Make me an Exorcist.
    Mephisto: Okay. Let's say that Satan's son could be an Exorcist. What would you do?
  • Tastes Like Friendship: How Shirou (and later Rin) tamed Kuro—with special wine.
  • Tears of Blood: It happens to the people Satan tries to possess, especially on the Blue Night sixteen years ago. And it happens to Rin's dad.
    • This also happens to Lucifer in Chapter 56 when he strains himself too much.
  • Technicolor Fire: The main character wields vivid blue fire, which in the series is the trademark of Satan. The title represents this, of course.
  • Thanks for the Mammary: Beach kid accidentally does this to Izumi in Episode 11.
  • Time Master: Mephisto: "I am second in Gehenna's hierarchy, The King of Time, Samael."
  • Time Stands Still: When faced with an expanding artificially created Gehenna Gate, Mephisto stops time around it, but notes it won't last indefinitely. They have only bought a few months to fix the problem.
  • Time Travel Episode: An entire time travel arc is devoted to showing Rin the events of the past that led to his own birth and the current crisis facing the world.
  • Title Drop: From Chapter 33, summing up Rin's mission after he's demonstrated it by defeating the Impure King and annihilating all its insidious spores more or less by himself:
    Mephisto: It's the birth of a blue exorcist... whose self-imposed fate is to kill his own comrades.
  • True Companions: Rin and his classmates. More so after they discover his secret, although in the manga it takes some time for them to get over it.
  • Tsundere: Kamiki Izumo.
    • Rin is a milder male version.
    • Suguro Ryuji is too, but only towards Rin, who he can't stand and has a hard time showing gratitude for honestly. He's relatively nice to everyone else. He grows out of it very fast.
  • Turn the Other Cheek: Rin's response to Neuhaus stabbing him in the gut? Offer him as many free hits as he wants while begging him not to harm innocents. It helps that Rin can heal.
  • Un-Paused: In the manga the cuckoo clock Mephisto made during Amaimon and Rin's second fight just kept Amaimon trapped in a pocket dimension where Time Stands Still (since his Healing Factor was paused as well based on his burns) when Mephisto uses it to summon him to Curb Stomp Rin it's clear Amaimon is under the impression that they are still in the middle of that fight.
  • Use Your Head: This is step one for Rin in regards to calming down Kuro. Yukio has the appropriate reaction to this.
  • The Unmasqued World: With the opening of the artificial gate in Chapter 95, everyone the world over can see demons and spirits.
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Nobody is concerned about Rin's fangs or ears (and sometimes even his tail!). Word of God is that it is "surprisingly complicated", and seems to rely on them failing a spot check (if one ditches the chuff of Mephisto's rant on this point). Even exorcists aren't bothered, as there's a number of half-demons and even demons (like Mephisto) who are exorcists. Subverted with Rin's blue flames, since a) blue flames are Satan's signature power and b) can only be seen with those with a masho.
  • Weaksauce Weakness: Rin's tail and his sword are direct connections to his "demon heart". Notice that we've never seen Mephisto's tail.
    • As of Chapter 39, we finally get to see Amaimon's tail. Unfortunately for Rin, he doesn't get to take advantage of it in a fight.
    • Then Chapter 49 brings with it the introduction of Lucifer, the King of Light, leader of the Illuminati, and a Demon King strong enough, even when weakened, to ward off Mephisto. He makes absolutely no effort to hide his tail.
  • Wham Episode:
    • Chapter 48. Shima is revealed to be an Illuminati spy as he successfully captures his target - Izumo.
    • Chapters 93-98 are one prolonged Wham Episode. After nearly every attempt to learn more about his and Rin's past fails, Yukio learns that the Order of the True Cross performed horribly unethical cloning experiments to help the Demon Kings. He goes to Shiemi for comfort, only to blow up at her and push her to the floor when she says exactly the wrong thing. Yukio then runs off shoots himself in the head in despair, only to be saved by the power he's been trying to awaken, which turns out to be Satan, who starts taunting him. After taking down Shima, who has been watching him, he goes to Mephisto to demands answers and is flat out refused, at which point Yukio aims his gun at Mephisto in rage, but does not shoot. Someone else shoots Mephisto in the face as he's on stage, which forces him to drop the barrier around the Gehenna Gate. Yukio is arrested, Rin learns about it and decides to break him out, Shima shows up with an Illuminati helicopter and an offer to take Yukio away, and Yukio chooses to leave the Order and Rin behind, which he emphasizes by shooting Rin repeatedly. Rin attacks Yukio in a blind rage, at which point Satan breaks the Koma sword, which releases Rin's demon heart in full, which burns him to a cinder, which he regenerates from, but he's under the influence of his demon self, who now manifests as an individual in Rin's mind. Wow.
    • Chapter 113 was one of these. Fans figured Yukio would turn on the Illuminati, but not this fast. After confirming that the only reason they wanted him was as a window for Satan, and after grabbing the fancy new experimental guns they'd given him, Yukio activates the Morinas contract Lightning had put on him, summoning two high ranked demons who it turned out were meant to protect Yukio and lead Lightning to his location rather than attack him. Yukio then orders the demons to take down the airship they're on, dares Lucifer to kill him, survives thanks to Satan, and simply leaves.
    • Chapter 120. We see Shirou Fujimoto's ch 1 death from his pov, learning in the process that Rin's words had never been the cause of his possession, find out that the paths in life he chose for the twins were chosen specifically to help them do what they wanted in life, sees Rin finally come to terms with his existence now that he's seen the effort his mom and dad put into helping him survive, and ends with Rin going to find Yukio and emerging onto the flaming airship to confront him, bringing the Time Travel arc to an end.
  • Wham Shot:
    • During Kyoto, a close up of Yukio's eyes reveals they have turned demonic, exactly like his brother.
    • Paired with a Wham Line, we have Renzo holding Izumo, who he knocked out, as Takara labels him the spy.
    • At the end of chapter 80, it is revealed the Illuminati have been collecting various immortal demons and there are a lot of them.
    • Multiple in chapter 93. To wit, Yukio hugging Shiemi, Yukio pushing Shiemi, Yukio shooting himself, and the bullet disintegrating while Yukio's eyes turn blue and Satan mocks him for trying to kill himself. Honorable mention goes to Rin's horrified expression when Shiemi bursts in crying and says something happened with Yukio.
    • At the end of chapter 96, Yukio shoots Rin in the face. With a real bullet this time.
    • Near the end of the chapter, we see Rin's face beginning to degrade and rot from having all his demonic power return to his body, similar to Mephisto and Lucifer's bodies.
    • Rin, newly reborn after the sword broke.
    • The final page of chapter 120, the Okumura twins are together again.
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • "Why the hell is Satan's kid at our school!? ...No, not Yukio."
    • Also, the online translator is shocked that Angel chopped Rin's foot off to hold him still during his "trial".
    • Shiro Fujimoto in the past arc is full of these.
      • Attacking a harmless group of greenmen demons just for being demons.
      • Attacking and insulting Rick for no other reason than that he was there and Shiro was already pissed.
      • Tried to attack Yuri for scolding him for the above, and could've hurt her badly had Rinka not intervened.
      • Started out fully prepared to kill Satan's children despite their mom begging him not to.
  • What Year Is This?: Rin can't tell how much time has passed between jumps, so Mephisto has to keep telling him.
  • Who Wants to Live Forever?: Yukio certainly doesn't, though that's at least partly because he's also suicidal. He does eventually manage to both throw off his immortality and get a slight rein on his issues, though he's still got a lot to work through.
  • Words Can Break My Bones: Most lesser demons have a line in the scriptures that exorcises or binds them, which is the job of Arias to find and memorize.

Alternative Title(s): Ao No Exorcist