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YMMV / Tokyo ESP

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  • Complete Monster: In a series constantly fluctuating between comedy and drama, this duo of Ares executives proves being the worst that the organization have to offer.
    • Claudia Kuroi, the mother of the Kuroi sisters, is a horrifying combination of sadism and ambition. A master thief from a family made of them, Claudia murders her husbands for no reason before abandoning her daughters to travel around the world. Joining Ares, Claudia—having become a Esper herself—leads a faction running a underground fighting ring that forces captured Espers to fight to the death for the entertainment of wealthy viewers while selling some of them as Sex Slaves. Appearing in Tokyo to find Fujiko Orisube, Claudia manipulates her to enhance her own powers while also kidnapping one of her daughters to find the Holy Ark and then torturing her in a mix of sadism and emotional sadomasochism born out of guilt at knowing the wrongness of her actions. When the factions of Ares break up in a civil war, Claudia annihilates the whole group. Being empowered for Fujiko, Claudia kills her and her own servant before starting a rampage in Tokyo and trying to kill her other daughter. A hypocrite that rages at the world for not allowing her have a family that she herself destroyed, Claudia destroy everything what she can't have.
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    • Hephaistos, the Machine Duke, is an over-120 years old Esper with the power of possession. Taking the bodies of teenage female espers for both their powers and to satisfy his lust in all that time, Hephaistos leads the assault on Murasaki's house to capture Ren Jomaku while shooting at everything that he can and taking the body of Marume Maruyama, technopath and Ren's close friend, gloating to her about how her friend is gone. When the factions of Ares break up in a civil war, Hephaistos starts by using drones and bombs to destroy the streets of Tokyo while proclaiming his domain over the city and personally fatally injuring another of Ren's friends. When Marume starts regaining control of her body, Hephaistos tries to kill himself with the intention of taking her with him. A perverted old man, Hephaistos is the only person that can match Claudia in egoism.
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  • Ensemble Dark Horse: The Kuroi twins, to the point Kobushi ended up becoming a prominent ally for the heroes and Kozuki for the villains.
  • Heartwarming Moments: For a Manga with so much sadness and loss, Tokyo ESP also tends to have its fair share of heartwarming.
    • Seeing the Hong Kong underground fighters finally get to leave and see their loved ones makes it feel like Rinka's choice to become a villain in Japan was worth it.
    • Rinka FINALLY getting to see her dad again after a year of him thinking she betrayed all her morals. Both of them are reduced to tears. It ends with Rinka, Rindo, Murasaki, and Peggy sharing a hug 26 issues in the making, with Azuma smiling in the background and uttering his catchphrase of 'miracle.' Miracle indeed.
    • Rinka forcing Azuma to promise that he won't leave her behind anymore in chapter 9. It's the point where the two stop being acquaintances and become true friends.
    • Azuma finally getting it out in the open in chapter 53; he loves Rinka, and would discard everything for her. And Rinka's response? 'So long as you say those words...we'll be able to keep moving forward.'
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    • Minami deciding, at the end of London ESP, that she isn't alone anymore...because she has Kozuki. The feeling is mutual, by the way; despite her grandmother securing her safety and all the times Minami lashed out at her, Kozuki still decides by the end of London ESP that she'll always be by Minami's side, actually managing to impress her hardass of a grandmother, in her own roundabout way. Finally, both Black Fist sisters have someone to fight for.
    • In chapter 57, Kobushi is back and (mostly) recovered, and for the first time in the entire manga, Rinka is nothing but happy to see her back. Considering how they spent most of the manga bickering up to this point and being annoyed by each other's appearance, it's nice to see the two can finally be buddies for real. And what's more, Kobushi never forgot her promise during Rinka's time as a prize fighter to go out and get Gyudon after all was said and done. Awwwwwww.
      • Also in 57, thinking about how the tournament arc has changed him, Azuma spiritually passes the torch of Crow Head, his heroic persona, to Marume, after all she did to save people.
    • In chapter 58, we find out why Minami was unable to just dash away from the grenade. For a crucial moment, she hesitated...because she didn't want to leave Kozuki behind.
    • What causes Minami to break out of her hopeless stupor in chapter 62? News that Kozuki may, in fact, be alive.
    • Ren, in a bittersweet way, fulfills Nene's Last Request.
    • In the final chapter, we see that Marume did, in fact, survive. As did Rindo and Azuma!
  • Ho Yay: Surprisingly for a manga with a predominantly female cast of main characters, most of the main characters have boyfriends or people they wish were their boyfriends. That being said...
    • Kozuki seems a little too...attached to Minami. She gave up stealing The Ark of the Covenant to stay with Minami when she could have finally given something to her grandmother to prove herself as Black Fist, eagerly protects Minami from danger, sits on her while she sleeps, and finds an excuse to kiss her on the cheek.
    • Related to this, Hibiki accuses them of flirting in the middle of a fight. This is after she lustfully licked Minami's blood off her blade, by the way, and she makes no attempts to hide the fact she's sexually interested in Minami. Even this crazy girl can tell Kozuki sees Minami as more than a ward.
    • By chapter 62, even Minami is aware of the fact she may have deeper feelings for Kozuki, and tearfully admits that, after everything that's happened so far, Kozuki is her everything.
    • The very first thing Minami and Kozuki do when they reunite in chapter 64? Hold hands while Minami says Kozuki's name and Kozuki looks close to breaking down in tears.
    • Minami says everything short of 'I love you' to Kozuki after telling Kozuki to wait for her, and that they can live freely starting the next day onward, in part 70.
      • And then Kozuki starts shrieking Minami's name as Minami gives Kozuki a sad smile and teleports away with the Dowser and the Professor. There's subtext and then there's being obvious.
    • Finally, at the very end, They Do. They finally get to be together, and Minami is smiling.
  • Just Here for Godzilla: Popular Minecraft LP'er Sky Does Minecraft voices Kyotaro Azuma.
  • Magnificent Bastard: The Professor, formerly Hokusai Azuma, was an archeologist who discovered the Holy Ark containing the Super Empowering Glowing Fishes. Becoming one of the first espers of the modern era, the Professor was betrayed and attacked by the General of his country and the Ares organization, which left his entire crew dead. Crafting his persona as "The Professor", he went back to Japan, adopting the son of one of his deceased crew-mates and begins plotting his vengeance against Ares, founding the terrorist group known as the Esper Liberation Front. Successfully opening the Ark atop the Tokyo Tower, the Professor causes a Mass Super-Empowering Event and despite his subsequent imprisonment, completes his revenge on Ares by leaving the heroes with instructions to take them down and free his beloved daughter. Driven to avenge his comrades, the Professor ruthlessly advances on his goals with care for none save his own child.
  • Narm: Rinka awakens her Enemy Within by... sticking a finger up her nose. It gets even better; this is in the middle of an interrogation with her being grilled by a mind reading ESP user. Her head rears back, her eyes become black...and no one notices anything. They go on talking to her as if she hadn't just stuck her finger in her nose and her eyes changed to black.
  • Replacement Scrappy: Ren, for taking the spotlight away from Rinka for much of Part 2. Though, thankfully, she eventually comes into her own, and for the final third of the story, the two are given near-equal time in the spotlight, with Rinka getting a slight majority. It's still and always will be her story, after all.
  • Rooting for the Empire: The Professor's back-story is actually quite tragic, and enough to get people to back him in his plan to create a new world.
  • The Scrappy: Ayumu can get close to being this at times, especially in the second half. In the first half, he's still a sexist jerk, but at least he ends up growing to grudgingly respect Rinka. By part two, he's the only original member of the group not to be happy to see Rinka back even after finding out she's completely clear of all charges against her AND they found her while she was stopping a hospital bombing, gets confrontational with Azuma for next to no reason, and has the gall to call Murasaki out for 'not acting seriously' literally moments after admitting to deliberately keeping her Locked Out of the Loop. About the only time his standoffish nature is justified is when he calls out Minami on her pity party after all the shit she made the cast go through working with The Professor.
  • Uncanny Valley: As opposed to being Gonk like some characters, the blonde haired CIA agent sometimes seen throughout the manga just Her face is more realistic than the faces of other characters, which clashes with the world a bit. Though this may have been intentional.

Example of: