King Enma (閻羅大王, Enma-daiou, lit. "Great King Enma"), known in the dub as King Yama, is the oft-absent King of the Spirit World and the father of Koenma, friend of spirit detective Yusuke Urameshi. He is voiced by R Bruce Elliott in the FUNimation English dub and Nobuaki Fukuda in Japanese.
King Enma is a giant bearded Lord of the Spirit World. He is one of the most powerful characters in the series. He is very strict and short tempered and punishes his son, Koenma, for incompetence at a job that is actually his responsibility.
King Enma is first mentioned in the Spirit Detective arc, when Koenma attempts to retrieve the three Artifacts of Darkness to avoid being punished by his father, comically portrayed as spanking.
Later in the Chapter Black arc, he orders the death of Yusuke to prevent the destruction of the universe's balance, which he removed as soon as Yusuke had left to the Makai and later proven to not be as violent as he suspected.
In the anime, it is implied that King Enma, had actually been pulling the strings and had his top unit attack Yusuke to awaken his potential to fight Sensui, and his attempts to have him killed were to force the former Spirit Detective to go to the Makai to hone his control over his new powers so he wouldn't be a threat to his friends. He apparently keeps his title and is secretly proud of his son's new independence.
In the manga, Koenma learns his father is corrupt. He lets demons into the Living World in order to stir up trouble and thus add meaning to his existence. Koenma dethrones his father and takes over Lordship of the Spirit World. King Enma valued the balance of Reikai, Ningenkai, and Makai, which is why he attempted to kill Yusuke, in order to maintain balance.
- King Enma's appearance is vastly different from his son's view on him in episode 6 and his actual appearance in the Chapter Black arc, which is portrayed as a stereotypical, beastly version of King Enma, and which is proven wrong when he appears to be a large yet normal version of King Enma with glasses.
- During the Chapter Black Saga, Sensui states that the A Class have powers equivalent to gods of various religions and myths. This implies that King Enma is likely a middle or upper A Class.
- King Enma shares similarities to King Yemma/Enma Daioh from Dragon Ball Z in both appearance and occupation. This would be due to both being based on the same deity.
- In YuYu Hakusho the Movie: Poltergeist Report, It was stated that King Enma defeated Yakumo thousands of years before the start of the series.