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Samurai Deeper Kyo

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Samurai Deeper Kyo is a (サムライ ディーパー キョウ Samurai Dīpā Kyō?) Manga series written and illustrated by Akimine Kamijyo. Set during the Edo period of Japan's history, Samurai Deeper Kyo follows Demon Eyes Kyo, a feared samurai seeking to regain his body after his soul is sealed inside the body of his rival, Mibu Kyoshiro. Kyo is joined in his search by the bounty-hunter Yuya Shiina, the heir to the Tokugawa shogunate Benitora; and Yukimura Sanada, a known rival of the Tokugawa. Samurai Deeper Kyo was serialized from October 15, 1999 to May 10, 2006 in Weekly Shōnen Jump, and collected over 38 volumes.




Plot

Set in Tokugawa Japan, this manga begins by following Shiina Yuya, a bounty hunter searching for her brother's murderer However, Yuya quickly meets a medicine peddler named Mibu Kyoshiro, who turns out to be sharing a body with the feared samurai Demon Eyes Kyo. Over time, Mibu Kyoshiro and, to a lesser extent, Shiina Yuya recede from the story while Demon Eyes Kyo comes to the fore. Kyo's only stated wish is to regain his own body. Following this path leads Kyo, Yuya and a variety of fellow travelers into conflict with both the Tokugawa Shogunate and the Mibu Clan, a race of violent superhumans who have run Japan from the shadows for millennia.

Underlying the principal story arc of Kyo's search to reclaim his body, there are many smaller arcs, each leading to the next one. The basis of many later revelations are established many volumes in advance. In the manga, it is revealed that all of the Mibu, except for Kyo, are descendants of Battle Dolls, creatures created by the Mibu to fight for their amusement. In time, the Battle Dolls come to believe they were the real Mibu, and that the real Mibu eventually became extinct due to in-fighting. The Mibu Battle Dolls are gradually being killed by the "Death Disease". Muramasa's sister was the first to be killed by the disease, but others soon followed. The disease manifests itself when the infected person reaches a certain age. For this reason, the aging process has been stopped in AnteraTokito', and probably others.

Demon Eyes Kyo ultimately defeats the father and creator of the Mibu, The Former Crimson King , who was also the very first Battle Doll. Originally anextremely beloved and thoroughly benevolent ruler, the King had become totally corrupted by his loss of all faith in humanity, and became an insane tyrant bent on completely eradicating all of mankind. Kyo then goes missing-in-action after the final battle, which blows up the Mibu capital. It is unsure whether it is Kyo or Kyoshiro who survives the final battle however it appears they are once again sharing the same body.



Main Protagonists

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Demon Eyes Kyo and Kyoshiro Mibu

Demon Eyes Kyo

He is known for his demonic blood-red eyes and is one of the most feared samurai in the world. He carries a legendary Nodachi called Tenro (Heavenly Wolf), made by mastersmith Muramasa. In the manga, he is depicted as a cold, unbeatable samurai. When he was young, he was shunned by all of the Mibu clan for his demonic red eyes except for the Former Crimson King (Sendai Aka no Ou). After killing Oda Nobunaga, he was thrown into the Mibu dungeons until Muramasa rescued him and trained him in Mumyo Jinpu Ryuu. Kyo is the last remaining True Mibu. Sendai Aka no Ou asked Kyo to seek out the outside world and one day stop the Former Crimson King himself if he was to become evil and destroy the world.


Kyoshiro Mibu

A remarkable and mysterious swordsman, depicted as the only rival to Demon Eyes Kyo. He wielded the Shibien (a black sword), one of the Muramasa weapons. In the manga, he is depicted as one of the heirs to the Aka no Ou throne, the Red Eyes being proof of his Mibu lineage. He is a Red Cross Knight, created from the flesh of the Sendai Aka no Ou. Though he is able to control the Red Eyes, he is not a true Mibu, but merely a more powerful battle doll resembling the first generation of battle dolls created. It is depicted that he is stronger than Demon Eyes Kyo until near the end of the manga.


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Yuya Shiina

Yuya Shiina

A young woman who makes a living as a professional bounty hunter in order to track down her brother's killer, the Man with the Scar on His Back"'. She uses a three barreled gun and small daggers as defensive weapons. Yuya is actually an orphan found by her brother, Nozomu, and raised by him as an adoptive sister. He was Sakuya's biological brother. Unlike many of the characters, Yuya is a normal human without any powers, despite the former Crimson King suspecting she can see the future later in the story.






Benitora (Red Tiger)

Benitora

Benitora

His true identity is Hidetada Tokugawa ( he is the third son of Ieyasu Tokugawa and the heir to the throne of the Tokugawa clan ). He is also known as '"The Shadow Master"' due to his ability to make multiple copies of himself. He first appeared in volume 2 of the manga, accompanying White Crow. He later challenges Kyoshiro, who he thought was Kyo, to a fight. Benitora loses and decides to join their group. He immediately takes a romantic interest in Shiina Yuya, although the feeling is not returned.





Yukimura Sanada

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Yukimura Sanada

Sanada Yukimura is a samurai who is out of favor with the Shogun, Ieyasu Tokugawa, because he and his father, Masayuki, sided with Ieyasu's opponents during the Battle of Sekigahara. He is supposed to be in exile at Kudoyama (Mount Kudo) but frequently slips away to try to rouse other samurai nobles against the Shogun. In this role, he uses an assumed name, Genjirou. Presumably this is what he was doing when he ran into Kyo, Yuya, and Benitora in Volume 03. He is fond of liquor and carnal pleasures, but by the end of Volume 03, it's revealed that he's also a fantastic swordsman, and he has a reputation as stellar military leader as well. His skills, are of equal match with Demon Eyes Kyo.

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