Muhyo and Roji's Bureau of Supernatural Investigation

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Muhyo and Roji's Bureau of Supernatural Investigation is a manga by Yoshiyuki Nishi that ran from late 2004 to 2008. Don't be fooled by the cutesy art style--this manga isn't for the faint of heart.

As the title says, this manga follows the adventures of Muhyo and Roji and their bureau of supernatural investigation as they confront spirits, traitors, and, quite often, each other. But they don't just banish ghosts. They sentence them with magic law, which is pretty much what the entire manga revolves around. Magic Law was established as a way to prevent the rising rates of crimes committed by ghosts, through sentencing them to various punishments for their crimes, and through those sentences, sending them to heaven, hell, or anywhere in between. While it starts out as your basic episodic manga, albeit a very engaging one, the plot develops quickly enough not to leave the reader too bored.


Tropes used in Muhyo and Roji's Bureau of Supernatural Investigation include:
  • Adult Child: Tomas seems to be one, but Page says that it was a mask for his darker nature.
    • Vector dies while expressing his desire to be friends with Roji
  • Always Second Best: Enchu.
  • Ambiguously Gay: Roji.
  • A Million Is a Statistic: 500 people die when Vector attacks Magical Law Headquarters in the north, and it gets less follow-up than other character deaths, with only a few panels of memorial services going on.
  • Analogy Backfire: Page mentions that a “golden thread” is binding Muhyo and Roji together, and Lil and Maril mock him for saying that it’s golden, noting how soft gold is and how easily it breaks.
  • Anger Born of Worry: Nana's father hits her when she photographs a bank robbery for money, leading to an argument over who will support the two and how, which turns out to be their last.
  • Asshole Victim: (Two Magic Law practitioners whom Enchu killed. One of them made Rio wear revealing clothes to class, the other mocked her for doing so, and both refused to save her mother).
    • Also, Ziglo, Ivy's first victim at M.L.S.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Isabi can change his size to five meters tall.
  • Attack Pattern Alpha: Goryo's Maneuver 108.
  • The Bechdel Test: Passes from the first chapter, which concerns a girl's efforts to reconcile with the spirit of her dead female friend.
  • BFS: Mick's sword. It can change length and even bend while attacking.
  • Big Bad: Teeki
  • Bishonen: Goryo and Isabi, at the very least.
    • Don't forget Roji, Julionil and Mick Courtlaw of the Ark. Kid might count, even though he's more of a shota.
  • Book Dumb: Yoichi and Biko had terrible grades at school, despite their skills in other areas of magical law.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy / More Than Mind Control : Despite everything that's happened, Page hopes that this is really what happened to Enchu (that or replaced by a puppet), but it is not the case.
  • Break the Haughty: Goryo. And how.
  • Brilliant but Lazy: Muhyo. When asked what would be the first thing he'd do as an Executor, he responds that he'd "quit and give the job to Enchu."
  • Broken Pedestal: Rio, for Biko.
  • Call Back: The duo’s first client is shown boarding a train near Roji in the last chapter.
  • Cast From HP: Forbidden Magical Law often requires part of the soul when the user does not have much tempering. People can make blood pacts instead of tempering pacts to turn summoned people into inanimate material.
  • Child Prodigy: Muhyo, at MLS.
  • Conspicuous Trenchcoat: Roji's disguise in the first chapter.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Goryo, for the Magical Law business.
  • Creepy Child: Face-Ripper Sophie.
  • Creepy Twins: Lili and Maril.
  • Crossover: One of the omakes has characters from Majin Tantei Nougami Neuro (a fellow Jump series) visiting Muhyo and Roji at their office.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Roji, and Umekichi, to an extent.
  • Dangerous Forbidden Technique: Several magical techniques shorten the users' lives or result in them being injured.
  • Deal with the Devil: Forbidden magic law.
  • Death World: Elysium (think the world of Nausicaa meets Pandora with the occasional sand dune).
  • Defeat Means Friendship: By defeating an envoy, an Executor can form a contract and enlist its help in carrying out sentences.
  • Deus Exit Machina: During Page's Training from Hell. Page could have easily taken Bellocent down by himself, but Bellocent cut the power and locked him out of the building. By the time he got in, Roji had already handled it.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Mick and Ivy's beef with M.L.S, granted it understandable they would want revenge for the death of their parents whom M.L.S seemingly slaughtered mercilessly for using forbidden magic but then we find out from Goryo that they actually tried to reason with their father first. His answer however was to proceed to kill the agents left and right before eventually being taken down.
  • The Dragon: Enchu to Teeki until his Heel Face Turn.
  • Driven to Suicide: Some of the ghosts, including "Mr. Overtime" and Yuki Otada.
  • Energy Absorption: Vector can do this on a wide area with his spirit roots.
  • Establishing Character Moment
    • Muhyo's first exorcism showcases that he doesn't shy away from inflicting punishment where necessary, but always seeks the best outcome.
    • Yoichi is introduced performing a Skinship Grope on Nana.
    • Tomas talking about killing an MLS agent and contemptuously describes his letter to his wife.
  • Everything's Better with Spinning: Umekichi rolls down a spiral staircase, spinning all the way to increase his speed by a factor of several hundred, killing Mick when he hits him with his Dragon Wheel
  • Evil All Along: Rio.
  • Eviler Than Thou: Tomas compared to Goryo.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin
  • Faking the Dead: Muhyo pulls one during the Panza fight in order to set up for an attack. As he tells Roji later "I don't die that easy!".
  • Fan Service: Quite unfortunate example in-universe. Rio's boss makes her wear revealing clothes to class in order for her to be able to sell her tools.
    • There's also some involving Imai--there's a part towards the end of the series where she literally shoves her hand up Busujima's shirt.
  • Fictionary: Underspeak, the language spoken by the residents of Hades. All Executors are required to know this in order to communicate with their envoys, although every speaker has a distinct accent (ie. Muhyo's Underspeak consists of a lot of ro's while Page's Underspeak contains quite a few more j sounds).
  • Five-Bad Band
  • Freak-Out: Enchu, after the collective stress of incredible amounts of studying, his mother's death, and his failure to become an Executor.
  • Funetik Aksent: The Seven-Faced Dog.
  • Gag Boobs: Busujima, who uses them to hide vials.
  • Godiva Hair: Isabi, although he's male. We think.
  • Golden Thread of Fate: Binds Muhyo and Roji together, according to Page, although he could have used a better adjective to describe it.
  • Good Cop, Bad Cop: Muhyo suspects Jyo's politeness toward the two regarding the kidnapping case is the "good cop" act rather than sincere belief in Magical Law. It turns out that he's desperate enough to solve the case to turn to them.
  • Good Is Not Nice: Muhyo, in spades.
  • Grand Theft Me: Teeki to Enchu.
  • Handsome Lech: Yoichi.
  • Hard Work Hardly Works: In his school days with Muhyo, Yoichi, and Biko, Enchu was shown to be an incredibly hard worker, going to insane lengths to become an Executor and support his sick mother. However, although Muhyo spent all his time slacking off, he ended up getting picked to be an Executor over Enchu. Partly justified in that Page notes that the people responsible for the decision were concerned about Enchu's preoccupation with his mother, and saw that he, unlike Muhyo (who immediately suggested giving the position to Enchu should he be chosen), did not think of others.
  • Heel Face Turn: Rio.
    • Although he wasn't exactly evil in the first place, Goryo probably counts.
    • Enchu.
  • Hell Hound: The Raindog and some literal Hell-hounds.
  • Heroic RROD: Muhyo, after sentencing Face-Ripper Sophie.
  • Heterosexual Life Partners: The titular pair, as well as Goryo and Ebisu.
  • High Heel Face Turn: Panza gets Redemption Equals Death. Rio, partly the result of realizing that Teeki killed her mother.
  • Hot Springs Episode: The group goes to one on a case and has to help a writer deal with the spirit of another writer.
  • Huge Schoolboy: Yuki Otada, who is Driven to Suicide and comes back as a haunt as a result of his classmates cruelly falsely apologizing to him and giving him fake addresses.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: "Article" instead of "Chapter," which is a reference to the many articles of magic law.
  • "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight: Ebisu tries this on Goryo in Article 62. It doesn't work
  • Immortality Immorality: Ark's goal is to achieve immortality.
  • Improbable Age Muhyo and Biko.
  • Instant Runes: Played with in the Curse Wheels, which serve to lay down the "Hundred Curses" as they pass.
  • Insufferable Genius: Muhyo. You ARE this Trope!
  • Jerkass: Goryo.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Ebisu manages to give Roji some useful advice about how best to support Muhyo when talking about his criminal past and service to Goryo.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Muhyo appears very cold and pitiless, but often talks the envoys he summons into giving ghosts a lighter sentence, and he really does care about people. He just has a funny way of showing it.
  • Kick the Dog: Shortly after his introduction, Goryo is shown telling one of his employees to have an old lady possessed by a ghost because she couldn't pay his exorbitant fee. Another instance has him laughing at a mother who lost her child in a tragic accident.
    • "It was only one child. Why, she could have found a new man, made another one."
    • Tomas relating, with boredom and disdain, his killing a MLS agent while he was writing the first letter to his wife in years. It's also his Establishing Character Moment,
  • Kids Are Cruel: Yuki Otada commits suicide after being bullied for his size.
  • Kuudere: Goryo to a T, at least pre-8.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Goryo, after he attempts to take down Ark one too many times.
  • Last-Name Basis More than half the cast.
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: Quite a few characters are in the cast, and typically, each volume except for the last has at least one or two new characters who get character profiles.
  • Lotus Eater Machine: Muhyo does this to Yuki Otada, both as a way of tricking him into releasing the people he's kidnapped and making his descent into Hell easier.
  • Loveable Sex Maniac: Yoichi
  • Love Makes You Evil: Most of the members of Ark are largely doing what their doing because they lost a loved one and think they can get them back using forbidden magic. Doesn't help their being used as pawns by Teeki
  • Manipulative Bastard: Teeki, in spades.
  • Manly Tears: Nearly every male character in the series gets at least one of these moments.
  • Marionette Master: Panza and Buhpu.
  • Missing Mom: Rio and Enchu.
  • Mobile Shrubbery: Part of Roji's "Super-Fab Tech."
  • The Mole: Rio.
  • Monster of the Week: At first.
  • Name and Name
  • Necromantic: Ark's other major motivation, especially for the Cortlaw siblings.
  • Never Got to Say Goodbye: Nana to her father, who died of a heart attack just after she stormed out of an argument with him. Subverted when he comes back as a ghost and she finally does get to say goodbye to him as he's dragged down to the river Styx.
  • Not So Harmless: Julio is typically quite lazy and notes that Teeki never had to work on him as a result, but once his curse activates, the heroes are unable to move, and thus in dire straits.
  • Odd Friendship: Imai and Busujima.
  • 108: Goryo's maneuver of the same name.
  • One-Winged Angel: Some of the Ark members and Isabi.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Roji, aka Jiro Kusano.
    • Also, Yuu Abiko, more commonly known as Biko.
  • Parental Abandonment: Nana?s father is dead and her mother left after divorcing him
    • Literal version with Panza whose family literally pushed her out the door once they found out about MLS and made it very clear they didn't want to see her again. All because she could see ghosts.
  • Perpetual Poverty: Muhyo and Roji, as a result of not having many cases and being a small and not very well-known Magical Law office. Muhyo wants to keep the office small, as he notes "Go public and you'll end up like Goryo."
  • Pet the Dog: Goryo: "You went the wrong way?! Now Ebisu would never -- ...Driver, this conversation never happened."
  • Pettanko: Imai.
  • Playing with Fire: Rio's favored method of attacking with forbidden magical law.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Chief Inquisitor Page.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Muhyo frequently gives these. Page gives a brief one to Enchu after he coldly reacts to seeing an unconscious Yoichi, and tells him that Yoichi has been putting all his effort into investigating him and bringing him back despite his evil deeds.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Panza
  • Retirony: Two guards who are engaged and planning to move away from the Arcanum get killed by Face-Ripper Sophie, who assumes the female guard’s identity.
  • Rival Turned Evil: Enchu.
  • Samus Is a Girl: Biko.
  • Save the Villain: Muhyo and Enchu
  • Secret Test of Character: Page, with Roji. He offers to take Roji on as his assistant, but Roji insists firmly that he'll stay with Muhyo. He passes, of course.
  • Seven Deadly Sins: One of the envoys uses this theme, attacking with seven barrels that each possess a certain animal on them and correspond to one of the sins.
  • He is Not My Boyfriend: Imai gets angry and chases Busujima down when she refers to Roji as her boyfriend.
  • Shout-Out: Roji's first visit to MLS is a lot like Harry's first visit to Diagon Alley.
  • Shut UP, Hannibal: Roji declares that he refuses to believe that people's fates cannot be changed, and that Enchu merely couldn't deal with his grief, and dispels the curse technique, allowing the heroes to move again.
  • Smug Snake: Goryo, to the core.
  • Spell Book: The magic law books owned by Executors. They also come packaged with a convenient Self-Destruct Mechanism.
  • Stalker with a Crush: Averted in the pilot chapter, where a ghost of a boy had been said to be "stalking" a girl in life, but he merely wants to be friends with her. Played straight with Panza, for Roji.
  • Standard Evil Organization Squad: Ark.
  • Stringy-Haired Ghost Girl
  • The Stoic: Muhyo rarely shows any emotion besides calm detachment, slight annoyance or amused disdain, even when he's fighting against former friends or particularly evil ghosts.
  • Suck Out the Poison: Rio does this for Biko, but subverted in that it doesn't work.
  • Summon Magic: The series is built with Summon Magic.
  • Synchronization: Referred to as "syntony." A side effect of forming a flesh and blood contract.
  • Taken for Granite: The Gingko Hag's ability.
  • Taking the Bullet: Yuuri for Muhyo. Later on, Panza for Roji.
  • They Call Me Mister Tibbs: “That’s Miss Q-La to you.”
  • The Unfavorite: "Face Ripper" Sophie in life, was left out of many social events for how she looked, and responded by killing her sister and tearing off and wearing her face.
  • Think Nothing of It: Goryo, when he gives Muhyo and Roji back their bureau.
  • This Loser Is You: Roji, although he improves.
  • Together in Death: Kid thinks this about his family in his dying moments.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Roji. Quite often, actually.
  • Train Station Goodbye: Between Muhyo and Roji.
  • Tsundere: Imai typically is fairly stern and often gets irritated by her best friend Busujima’s antics, but often shows a softer side, like when she cries after Roji fails the advancement test that would let him stay as Muhyo’s assistant.
  • Victoria's Secret Compartment: Busujima hides tempering medicine between her breasts to prevent Imai from finding out how reckless her magic use is.
  • Unexplained Recovery
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: The Seven-Faced Dog.
  • Weak but Skilled: Yoichi.
  • Welcome Back, Traitor: Played painfully straight with Rio.
  • Wham! Line: Rio revealing that she's in league with Enchu.
  • Whole-Episode Flashback: How Muhyo and Roji first met.
  • Wizarding School: The Magic Law School, more commonly referred to as MLS.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Vector, a cursed half-ghast child whose curse activates if he fulfills basic needs like food or companionship, and who, merely by sitting still, sets up spirit roots that drain many people's souls.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: Teeki makes a Hannibal Lecture to this effect when his victory seems certain, noting that Enchu is a prime example.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Enchu.
    • And Rio seems to dye his hair pretty often, from blond to green.
  • You Have Failed Me...: Ark isn't afraid to kill one of their own if they fail in a fight against the heroes. So much for unity.
  • You Killed My Father: The Cortlaw kids and Rio.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle: After Face Ripper Sophie is defeated, Rio reveals that she deliberately released ghosts from the Arcanum and is a member of Ark.