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Manga / Samurai Deeper Kyo

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Samurai Deeper Kyo is a thirty-eight volume manga by Akimine Kamijyo about the exploits of Shiina Yuya, a sixteen year old bounty hunter seeking revenge for her older brother's death, who meets Mibu Kyoshiro, a medicine peddler, and Demon Eyes Kyo, who is trapped in Kyoshiro's body.

And then it gets complicated.

Cue an Anachronism Stew, a large cast, loads and loads of Character Development, lots of badassery, several Quirky Miniboss Squads, several BFSes, and what is probably the biggest Bodyguard Crush in history.

The manga was serialized in Weekly Shonen Magazine from October 15th, 1999 to May 20th, 2006. It was adapted to a 26-episode anime that aired in 2002.

Kyo and friends appear in the Massive Multiplayer Crossover game, Sunday VS Magazine: Shuuketsu! Choujou Daikessen.


  • Anachronism Stew: Shameless and blatant. Bon reads shoujo manga, Yuya's three-barreled pepperpot revolver does not fit the era at all, Saishi and Saisei wear Stripperific nurse uniforms... etc.
  • Ancient Conspiracy: The Mibu Clan has been shaping the history of Japan from behind the scenes for as long as the country has existed.
  • And That's Terrible: Kyo kills people for fun. Because he is the hero, every one of the villains in the series has to be called "You MONSTER!" at some point, just so we remember which of them is less bad.
  • Animal Eye Spy: Fubuki can see through the eyes of his undead cat, and he uses it to spy on both enemies and allies.
  • Anti-Hero: If Kyo (a person who got his nickname for perpetrating mass-murder on a ridiculous scale) doesn't count, then there is no such thing. To a lesser extent, there is literally every single other protagonist. There isn't a played-straight "hero" type in the entire cast.
  • Art Evolution: Both character designs and scenery become more refined and unique as the story progresses, especially once the protagonists arrive in Mibu territory and we get to see their elaborate city and structures.
  • Artificial Humans:
    • The Mibu Reconstruction Plan's genetic experiments; forest-dwelling "failures", the rare breed like Sasuke, and biological weapons like the Berserkers.
    • A major twist near the end of the manga reveals that every living member of the Mibu clan is actually a descendant of Battle Dolls created by the True Mibu. Kyo is the only remaining descendent of the original clan.
    • In the anime, the above plot twist is inverted. Only Kyo is a construct; he's Kyoshiro's Id split from the rest of his soul and placed in an artificial body.
  • Aw, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: Kyo and Yuya in the last couple of chapters and the epilogue (there are moments earlier, but they're few and far between). Perhaps most evident after her Cooldown Hug breaks him out of his supposedly-irreversible "Demon God" state.
  • BFS:
    • Kyo's Tenro is the most prominent.
    • Sasuke starts out with a Tenro copy, despite being twelve years old and an appropriate height for his age.
    • Shihoudou's Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi is also really damn big.
    • Hishigi's Hakuya is massive, and he wields it one-handed.
  • Blood from the Mouth: Happens a lot. It's occasionally justified when a character is outright stated to have lung damage/internal bleeding, or a cut in the mouth in less deadly situations. It also comes with the Incurable Cough of Death for any Mibu with the Death Disease.
  • Bodyguard Crush:
    • It is a very rare occurrence that Kyo's Unstoppable Rage trigger is something other than Yuya being directly threatened. Not that he'll admit he cares.
    • In the anime, it's strongly implied Saizō has a crush on Yukimura. It's not helped by Yukimura teasing him ("What are you, my wife?" followed by "If it pleases you, my lord". Then there's Saizō blushing and his comment when Yukimura disguises himself as a woman. The kimono "really suits you" indeed.)
    • While not exactly a bodyguard, Hishigi seems to have one on Fubuki. He throws himself in front of Kyo's most powerful attacks for him, and his only motivation is Fubuki's survival.
  • Book Ends:
    • The story begins four years after Kyo's "death" at Sekigahara. Kyoshiro is seen reading his wanted poster, Yuya shows up and meets him for the first time, and Kyo returns in Kyoshiro's body at the end of the first chapter.
    • The story ends three years after Kyo's disappearance/possible death with the fall of the Crimson Tower. Yuya is seen reading his wanted poster, Kyoshiro shows up to meet her, and Kyo returns in his own body at the end of the final chapter.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Julian and Shihoudou are both extremely competent and extremely weird. Kyo warns Sasuke of the latter's badassitude when Sasuke gets cocky, and admits even he can't handle her in a fight.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Toward the end of the manga, Yukimura uses the kodachi that Muramasa gave Yuya to defeat Chinmei. Even later, the same kodachi is altered by Julian to become the fourth "key" needed to open the door hiding the Mibu's greatest secret.
  • Chekhov M.I.A.: We are told that Mibu Kyoichiro (the first of the Crimson Cross Knights) went missing and is probably dead. He's the Former Crimson King.
  • Children Are Innocent: Subverted by so many characters that it's far more remarkable when we do see an innocent child. Flashbacks of Yuya, Tokito, and Shinrei are about the only moments that play it straight. Specific examples of subversion below:
    • Akira is cheerfully slaughtering away on the battlefield by the time he's ten, and was a jaded street kid before Kyo found him.
    • The Mibu have no problem with using child soldiers.
    • As if it needs to be said, Kyo himself. He killed Nobunaga when he was six. Six.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Hotaru and Shihodo are the most dramatic examples. Both also have Genius Ditz qualities, being surprisingly insightful and extremely skilled at fighting. The Former Crimson King acts like this in his first appearance and a few others, but it quickly becomes obvious that it's an act.
  • Combat Commentator: Akira and Bon serve as this at turns for Yuya. Averted in the Akira-Tokito fight, as Yuya isn't around for that one.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: A significant number of enemies who aren't dead at the end of a fight become allies.
  • Depraved Homosexual:
    Bikara: Getting distracted by a woman while a beautiful man like me is standing in front of your eyes.
    Bikara: The suffering face of a good-looking man is dreamy.
  • Despair Event Horizon:
    • In a flashback, we learn that Hishigi hit it hard after implanting the Devil Eyes, telling Fubuki that he wished that someone would just kill him already and calling his friend cruel for refusing to do so.
    • Subverted by Tokito, who dramatically proclaims that he's hit one after losing to Akira, but gets over it after losing a hand of Misery Poker and gaining some perspective.
  • Deus ex Machina: At the end of Kyo's battle with the Sendai Aka no Ou, the Crimson Tower is falling to pieces around them and Kyo is horrifically wounded to the point where he cannot even stand. Three years later, we find out that the Original Crimson King (AKA the spirit of Tenro and Kyo's ancestor) teleported Kyo out before he hit the ground.
  • Distant Finale: The last chapter is set three years after the one before it.
  • The theme of the Goyosei is that they embody the five Chinese elements: Shinrei is water, Keikoku (Hotaru) is fire, Chinmei is earth, Saishi is wood, and Taihaku is gold/metal. Taihaku is the only one who does not have powers related to his element.
  • Shindara is shown to be capable of using several elements, but at a lower power output than specialists.
  • Elemental Rivalry: Invoked in the case of Hotaru and Shinrei. Hotaru chose to learn and use fire skills because he wanted to be the opposite of everything Shinrei and their father stood for.
  • Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors: Subverted. Some characters (especially Hotaru and Shinrei, see Elemental Rivalry above) will claim that their personal element has an advantage over another, but events throughout the story prove that superiority is determined by the wielder's skill and individual strength rather than their elemental affinity. Hotaru initially overpowers Shinrei despite severe injuries from fighting Kyo, but only because he's using his Hono Chikewai, which gives him a huge boost of power but causes damage over time. Shinrei ultimately comes out on top because Hotaru's boost wears off. And later, both of them get mercilessly curbstomped by Fubuki, a true master of water.
  • Empathic Weapon: The Muramasa demon blades. It's implied that other weapons can "speak" with their wielders as well, but not demonstrated.
  • Enfante Terrible:
    • Tokito starts off as one of these. Subverted because the timeline proves he's at least a few decades older than he looks, but he presents as a child (14 according to the fanbook) because his adult body looks more like Muramasa. When she was actually a child, she was perfectly nice.
    • Kyo was one; when he killed Nobunaga at Honnoji, he was six years old.
  • Eyepatch of Power: Hishigi has something of an "entire left side of his body" patch of power. There's also Akari's glove, which covers the Devil Eye on her hand.
  • Fake Memories: Tokito's memories of her real parents (Fubuki and Hitoki) were suppressed and replaced by the idea of Muramasa as her father who abandoned her and a mother she never knew. When the real memories try to surface, she suffers from headaches and disorientation.
  • Fan Disservice: Hishigi is quite attractive, but the one time he takes off his shirt, it's this because he's covered in Devil Eyes.
  • The Fog of Ages: Chinmei is implied to be at least a couple thousand years old, and can't remember for sure if any of the people he used to love even existed. By the time he shows up in the plot, killing is the only way he can feel anything.
  • Foreshadowing: Mibu-created Artificial Humans (the forest failures, rare breed, and other genetic experiments) dissolve into nothing when they die and cannot be resurrected. The same thing happens when the Mibu themselves die. Near the end of the manga, Fubuki reveals that they're artificial constructs, too.
  • Muramasa forged four "demonblades" (Tenro, Shibien, Hokurakushimon, and Hokuto Shichisei), incredibly powerful weapons that can be just as dangerous to the wielder as the enemy if not used correctly.
  • There are four Crimson Cross Knights, and every one of them except for Kyosaburo is shown being incredibly deadly. And Kyosaburo developed the Mumyo Jinpu Ryu, so it can be assumed that he was extremely powerful as well.
  • Nobunaga's fourth death is the one that puts him down for the remainder of the manga, though who knows if it's permanent.
  • Gentle Giant: Bontenmaru. Sure, he has the whole "god of war" thing going on, complete with a berserker mode and everything, but he has a soft spot—not like that—for little girls, even ones that punch holes in him and torture him; and Akari reveals that he likes shoujo manga. As for Bontenmaru's reason for taking over the entirety of Japan? He wants to take it over so people can live their lives in peace.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars:
    • Subverted by Yuya, who has a hideous scar on her stomach (though it does get de-hideoused later on).
    • Played straight by Hishigi, whose entire left side is covered in disfiguring scars because of the Devil Eyes. It gets even worse after the eyes are destroyed, leaving bloody craters all over the left side of his body and face.
    • Also played straight by Akira; he's Covered with Scars, but they're usually hidden by his clothes (most of them are on his back) and don't have any impact on his appearance.
    • Played with in Kyo's case. He's even more thoroughly Covered with Scars than Akira, but his established status as a Anti-Hero of the highest order means they aren't as jarring as they might be on a typical hero. The scars on his face are also more understated.
  • Gondor Calls for Aid: At the end of the manga, when Yukimura rallies the forces of Tokugawa, Sanada, and Date to contain the Crimson King's blood soldiers.
  • Graceful Loser: Most opponents who survive fulfill this trope, as well as some who don't. The Sore Loser is just as common, though.
  • Gray-and-Grey Morality: Some of the villains have good reasons for what they do, becoming more sympathetic than our Ax-Crazy Blood Knight protagonist.
  • Guns Are Worthless: Yuya's three-barreled pepperpot revolver, while cool, very quickly becomes obsolete against any real threat. The manga lampshades this when Akari takes Yuya's gun to shoot at Santera, and then throws the gun away when Santera stops the bullets.
  • Handicapped Badass: Hishigi (missing an eye and horribly debilitated by the Death Disease, still capable of one-shotting the main character), Akira (Blind Weaponmaster with countless old injuries, strong enough to stand with Kyo and the Shiseiten), and Jinpachi (missing arm replaced with Wolverine Claws, one of Yukimura's Ten).
  • He Who Must Not Be Seen: Sakuya spends 32 volumes hidden behind her bangs, and the manga-ka is fond of "lighting" characters whose faces we aren't to see yet from the back, or putting them in elaborate, face-covering costumes
  • High School AU: The author wrote one as an extra in the fanbook, and liked it so much that she wrote two "Samurai High School" drama CDs.
  • Historical Domain Character: There are historically relevant names all over the place (Sanada Yukimura, Date Masamune, Tokugawa Ieyasu and Hidetada, Oda Nobunaga, etc), on both sides of the various conflicts.
  • Homage Shot: The manga opens with a lay-out and narration content ridiculously reminiscent of the first page of Rurouni Kenshin, which was still running at the time. The series probably originated as an attempt to cash in on Rurouni Kenshin's popularity as historical drama with legendary swordsman incognito, but found its own very weird voice pretty quickly.
    • More precisely: SDK's first page runs, page-width panels going down:
      [First panel: bloody battle scene; whole page has artful blood drips all over it] "During the end of the warring states period... In a time of chaos, a war began to try to divide the country. This fight would later be known as the Battle of Sekigahara. Like thunder the war spread. Under this sound and bloody rain, many were killed."
      [Second panel: 'shadowboxing' image of dramatic duel] "These warriors, without taking care for the issues of the battle, had found the meaning of their lives in sword-handling... They lived only to improve their skill... And died..."
      [Empty white bridge space extending across page] "Among the men who disappeared at this historical time..."
      [Third/final panel: bottom of page occupied by close up of Scary Eyes] "There was one who was called 'the unbeatable'..."
      [Two-page title spread, then complete tone-shift and Kyoshiro as The Ditz reading off a wanted poster, finishing the sentence] "The legendary wanted man, Demon Eyes Kyo."
    • Meanwhile, Ruro Ken starts with, also page-width panels:
      [First panel: blood spatter flying] "One hundred and forty years ago, during the bloodbath in Kyoto touched off by the coming of Commodore Perry's black ships...there was a man known as the 'Hitokiri Battousai.'"
      [Second panel: similarly composed bloody combat scene, with our hero central] This man was a major player in the Meiji Restoration, for his skill with a sword was unrivaled. Once the war was over, he vanished without a trace. Time passed and legends formed, of how he was the strongest samurai to walk the face of the earth."
      [Third/last panel: Scary Eyes/Iconic Scar closeup] "And so, our story begins... In Tokyo, on the eleventh year of Meiji..."
      [Two-page title spread, next page opens with Kaoru's shout] "HITOKIRI BATTOUSAI!"
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Non-romantic between Bontenmaru and Tokito. She can ride around on his shoulder.
  • Imagine Spot: When Yuan is asked how he'd describe Hishigi, he says he's sort of like a mad doctor. This results in several characters trying to figure out what that means, imagining him Dressed to Heal and also as a typically deranged Mad Scientist, among other things.
  • The Idiot from Osaka: Both Benitora and Chinmei subvert it. Benitora is actually Tokugawa Hidetada and seems to have adopted the accent as part of his disguise; Chinmei's goofy accent is a deliberate juxtaposition to his vicious and deranged personality.
  • Important Haircut: Akira cuts Okuni's hair instead of killing her in exchange for releasing Kyo's real body.
  • Implausible Fencing Powers: To the nth degree. Apparently, a sword stroke from Kyo or Hishigi has enough power to give truckload of high explosives a run for its money.
  • Improbable Weapon User: Anthony's acupuncture needles, the real Mekira's chains, several others.
  • Jekyll & Hyde: Kyo and Kyoshiro. Subverted in the manga, played straight in the anime. In the Alternate Universe of the anime, Demon Eyes Kyo is actually the Id of Kyoshiro which he split from himself and placed in an Artificial Human body; they later reunite in their original body after Kyoshiro defeats Kyo, but this time as split personalities.
  • Kick the Dog: Every minor villain that the heroes have to kill off has one of these moments. Every single one.
  • Last of His Kind: Kyo, the last True Mibu. Averted in the case of the Former Crimson King, who it turns out, is merely the first Battle Doll.
  • Licking the Blade: Name a character. Odds are good that they've done this at least once. Naturally, Kyo is the most frequent offender.
  • Loved Ones Montage: Kyo has one during a fight near the end of the manga, though it's about people he's learned from more than necessarily "loved ones".
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Kyo, the final direct descendant of the Original Crimson King.
  • Medium Awareness: Kyoshiro vs. Benitora: "Can we just pretend the last 5 pages didn't happen?"
  • Mexican Standoff: One of Kyo's battles with Yukimura ends with them holding blades against each other's throats. This is one of very few times anyone really matches Kyo.
  • Misery Poker: Tokito throws a fit after losing to Akira, claiming to have had the worst life ever. Several other characters immediately top Tokito's sob story, but Akira "wins" with an entire panel detailing his horrific childhood.
  • Mobile Menace: The Mibu never seem to be inconvenienced by the size and complexity of their lair, except for when they've pulled a Heel–Face Turn, in which case, they have to slog it out with the other heroes.
  • The Mole:
    • Yukimura, when he pretends to defect to the Mibu's side.
    • Chinmei, as Spade, to get his hands on Tokito's demonblade.
    • Akari subverts this trope by virtue of mind control.
    • Kyoshiro pretends to defect to the Crimson King's side in order to motivate Kyo and eventually give his body back.
  • Mook: The Mibu's army of regenerating soldiers. They are formidable in numbers, but they are mooks nonetheless.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Yukimura is very pretty and quite flirty with both men and women.
  • Mutual Disadvantage: Yuan claims that he and Hishigi are "still even", and he might be right — they're both extremely powerful and extremely fast, and that's why the only casualty of their battle so far has been the terrain around them. Hishigi says he can tell that Yuan is running out of stamina, but he agrees they've reached a deadlock after the next exchange of blows continues to yield no advantage to either of them. As it turns out, Hishigi is not using all of his available power, but Yuan doesn't know that.
  • My Name Is Inigo Montoya: Many Mooks confront Kyo like this. He generally does not remember whatever he did that earned their undying hatred, because for him it was Tuesday.
  • "Not So Different" Remark:
    • While he's vanishing for the second time, Sasuke notices that, in the end, Nobunaga was not so different from them.
    • Kyo tries to pull this on Hishigi in a flashback, saying that he's a coward like her and that's why he's avoiding his moral qualms about the Mibu Reconstruction Project. Hishigi has to take a second before he says that they're nothing alike.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Hotaru is a good example, but the real winner is the Former Crimson King, who acts like a nearsighted buffoon who's Blind Without 'Em. Tokito, who got taken in by the facade, actually starts plotting to overthrow him until the Former scared the living daylights out of her with murderous intent, showing Tokito and readers the true nature of the Former Crimson King.
  • Odd Friendship: Benitora and Akira, who progress from Worthy Opponents to True Companions.
  • Official Couple: Kyo and Yuya and Kyoshiro and Sakuya. In the manga at least. In the anime, there's only Yuya's crush on Kyo/Kyoshiro and their growing feelings for her. They are shown to have gotten together in the epilogue in the last episode — where Kyo and Kyoshiro have been reunited into a single individual — which takes place years later. Also Benitora and Mahiro in the ending of the anime.
  • Oh, Crap!: A common reaction to shit getting real. Most people fighting Kyo get at least one moment like this.
    • It's the standard for people dealing with Hishigi. Even Kyo gets an Oh, Crap! moment when Hishigi pulls off a Flash Step from a good twenty feet away, and suddenly he is right in front of Kyo and Kyo's legs are petrified. Sasuke has a simultaneous and more expressive one. They both would have been dead if Kyoshiro hadn't stepped in.
  • One-Handed Zweihänder: Multiple characters wield enormous weapons one-handed, but the most notable is Hishigi. Hakuya is over five feet long, roughly six inches wide, and the length of the grip clearly indicates that it's meant to be a two-handed sword. Hishigi's left hand never touches it, probably because the Death Disease has internally destroyed most of his left side.
  • One Head Taller: If Kyo wore a Western-style button-down shirt, Yuya would hold conversations with/have infuriated outbursts at his breast pocket.
  • The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: Yukimura towards Kyo. Also several other characters towards Kyo. He's very popular.
  • Parental Abandonment: Tokito and Hotaru. Yuan's family, too, after Julian leaves them to focus on investigating and avenging Ian's death.
  • Parlor Games: At first, Haira challenges Bontenmaru to a game of shiritori where he can use the words as names for his attacks. He's defeated when Bontenmaru starts using idioms instead of words, confusing him.
  • Personality Powers: Subverted. Hotaru, who uses fire, nearly always remains calm and relaxed while fighting. Yuan plays the intense personality of the fire stereotype straighter, but he's still a nice, friendly guy overall. The ice specialist, Akira, presents a collected front and tries to stay that way, but he's easily frustrated when certain buttons are pushed. And water-user Shinrei loses his cool at the drop of a hat.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: Most of the cast. Especially Kyo, Hishigi, and the Shiseiten when they use their special combination attack.
  • Poisonous Person: Santera emits corrosive spores uncontrollably.
  • Promotion to Parent: Yuan's sister Anna, and Yuan himself to a lesser extent. Their father isn't dead, but he's not around often.
  • Punched Across the Room: Hotaru (courtesy of Yuan) and Kyo (courtesy of Shihodo and Akari), among others during intense fights. It also happens for comedic effect on a semi-regular basis.
  • Quirky Miniboss Squad: Taken to ridiculous extremes. You know they're overdoing it when even the main character gets one. Several members of quirky miniboss squads even have their own quirky miniboss squads.
  • Race Against the Clock: After Shinrei implants a water dragon in Yuya's heart, the company have a limited amount of time to stop Shinrei before it kills her.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Kyo is the literal incarnation of this trope. It's subverted later, when the Crimson Eyes become a major plot point.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Kyo gives them to his enemies all the time, and nearly every villain has one for the protagonists. Hishigi unleashes a vicious one combined with Break Them by Talking during his and Fubuki's last battle with Kyo.
  • Retired Badass: Shihoudou, Anri, Muramasa, arguably Julian (though he was never much of a fighter).
  • Rule of Cool: The only possible explanation for the Implausible Fencing Powers and endless levels in badass taken throughout the series. They're awesome.
  • Running Gag: Hotaru trying to move caterpillars out of the way so they don't get crushed during fights.
  • Samus Is a Girl: Tokito, who stops Bontenmaru's fists with three fingers and actually punches through him, despite the fact that one of his biceps is bigger around than her waist. She also starts off completely overwhelming Akira in their fight, and continues to do a massive amount of damage to him even after he powers up and starts to match her. Admittedly, some fans weren't convinced she was a boy in the first place.
  • Say It with Hearts:
    • In Chinmei's case, glasses-wearing smiley faces.
    • Yukimura is the worst offender with this trope, to the point that his subordinates use the tendency to differentiate between him and his female Body Double, who does not do it.
    • In Shihoudou's dialogue, everything from baseballs to little umbrellas show up.
  • Scary Shiny Glasses: Inverted. Both Chinmei and the Former Crimson King are at their most sinister when we can see what's behind those shiny lenses.
  • Scenery Porn: The manga is full of beautifully drawn environments rich with unique detail, especially once the Mibu arc begins. It's one of SDK's biggest selling points.
    • Scenery Gorn: The scenery suffers a few times, notably when the Shiseiten use their combination attack and level a huge area of the Mibu stronghold. There's also the fight between Hishigi and Yuan, which rips up the terrain around them as they deflect and avoid each other's extremely powerful attacks.
  • Sharing a Body: Kyo and Kyoshiro.
  • She Is Not My Girlfriend:
    • Kyo very rarely even acknowledges characters who attempt to taunt him about his feelings for Yuya.
    • Akira has a few of these moments with Tokito. His reaction tries to be like Kyo's. It fails, hard.
  • Shirtless Scene: Usually when a character suffers Clothing Damage or is having wounds treated. Bontenmaru is a Walking Shirtless Scene.
  • Single-Stroke Battle: Many of the early ones, when Kyo was more showing off his power than actually being challenged.
  • Sorting Algorithm of Evil: After arriving in Mibu territory, Kyo starts off fighting mooks and advances through a sea of increasingly-powerful threats until he finally reaches the Former Crimson King.
  • The Stoic: You can count the times Hishigi's expression shifts from deadpan on one hand. When it does, you run.
  • Super Hero Speciation: Downplayed, but within any given group (the Shiseiten, Goyosei, Taishiro, etc), it's very rare for two characters to have similar elemental abilities. Tokito is capable of Playing with Fire (Yuan's specialty), but it's not his main form of attack.
  • Superpower Meltdown: As Kyo's battle with the Former Crimson King becomes more and more intense, he overloads into the "Demon God" state of the True Mibu and completely loses his mind, unable to consider anything but fighting and killing. Yuya snaps him out of it.
  • Sword Beam: Hishigi creates these with his BFS, Hakuya. Other characters have techniques that can be placed in this category as well.
  • Tears of Blood: Chinmei and the Former Crimson King. Chinmei claims that this is what happens when you've "run out" of real tears.
  • Time to Unlock More True Potential: Kyo's training with Muramasa. The Training from Hell is offscreen other than a couple of pages of Kyo looking extremely beat up and Muramasa informing him that he's going to die if he doesn't get stronger.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Sooooo many characters... but especially Kyo, who starts off as a Memetic Badass that lives up to his legend and ends up being a damn Physical God, taking lots and lots of levels in badass in between.
  • Trash Talk: ALL OVER THE PLACE. In the manga, insults and taunting easily eat up a third (if not more) of every single duel.
  • True Companions: The Shiseiten to both Kyo and each other, though they initially claim that they're only together due to a mutual pursuit of strength.
  • Tsundere: Kyo is heavy on the tsuntsun, regularly calling his Love Interest dog-face and Servant #1, and has a really obnoxious habit of randomly feeling her up, no matter who happens to be watching. But the few moments in which he shows that he cares about her and the way he fights when she's in danger are surprisingly genuine and heartwarming, especially near the end of the manga.
  • Unequal Pairing: Kyo is twelve years older than Yuya (28 to her 16), attains Physical God levels of power by the end of the manga, and early on in the story he physically intimidates and randomly gropes her on a regular basis. Thankfully, she doesn't start having any kind of feelings for him until he dials back the Jerkass behavior a lot.
  • Universal-Adaptor Cast: They fit quite easily into their roles in Kamijyo's High School AU, and AU stories are rampant in the fandom.
  • Unstoppable Rage: Kyo, after Nobunaga almost fatally wounds Yuya. More than a few people were a little freaked out.
  • Weapons Kitchen Sink: Katana are naturally the most common weapon, but everything from a three-barreled pepperpot revolver to acupuncture needles shows up.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: The story arc were Kyo takes over permanently from Kyoshiro starts when the latter and Yuya try to help an old lady out. By the end of the arc, the old lady has disappeared from the story with no explanation at all.
  • White Hair, Black Heart: Fubuki. Shinrei and Yuan are initially presented this way, but they later subvert it.
  • Wholesome Crossdresser: Yukimura during the Tokugawa tournament. Everyone fell for it except Kyo.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: The Former Crimson King, arguably. Kyoichiro was the first of the Crimson Cross Knights, four Battle Dolls that were the closest thing the True Mibu ever created to their own power. When the True Mibu died out, Kyoichiro took the throne and tried to preserve their peaceful rule, but millennia of watching people hurt each other jaded him into a breakdown that eventually led to him losing all faith in both the Mibu and humanity.
  • Worst Aid: We've got characters ripping barbed weapons out of themselves, as well as the very common practice of dragging and/or carrying injured people around.
  • Worthy Opponent: Kyo is considered one by multiple characters (Yukimura and Nobunaga, among others). Yuan and Hishigi also seem to consider each other this, with Yuan saying he's always wanted to know how a fight between them would go, and Hishigi saying he would have liked to fight with Yuan a bit longer.
  • Wouldn't Hit a Girl: Subverted, as the gentlemen of the cast have no problem hitting their female enemies. Yukimura plays with this trope - one can assume he wouldn't hesitate to fight a woman if he really needed to, but Kamijyo mentioned while confirming Basara's gender that Yukimura would never have killed a woman like that. Yuan also says he doesn't want to fight Akari because she's a girl, but he didn't hesitate to stomp Okuni earlier, so take that as you will.
  • Wrecked Weapon: Hishigi's and Fubuki's swords when Julian manages to break them. Also, Sasuke's Tenro copy cracks when he fights Kyo.
  • You Killed My Mother: Yuan loses his shit when he finds out who killed his mother (he knew the Crimson King had ordered her assassination, but not who had personally done it). Subverted in that the villain in question is still stronger than Yuan, and Yuan is not the one who ends up taking him down.