Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 26: Recap & Review

Season 1, Episode 26: New Mission

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba’s phenomenal first season ends with the introduction of a new movie. More on that later. Muzan Kibutsuji calls the remaining lower six moons. They’re summoned and trapped in a warped space that’s controlled by a female demon with a biwa. Muzan appears in a new female body, having changed his appearance and aura. This ability is obviously why the Demon Corps have had a difficult time finding him. Demon Slayer has made it clear that Muzan is the most evil relative to other demons. During this meeting his displays why. Muzan asks them “why are they so useless.” Granted he has a point, but if giving demon his blood makes them stronger isn’t he the real reason they’re weak. Apparently, the lower six moon are significantly weaker than the upper moon.

Muzan states that it’s been a century since anyone has graduated into the upper ranks. It’s the upper ranks that kill the Hashiras. It’s in this moment we learn just how unforgiving he can be. When one demon thinks to himself, “that’s easy for you to say,” he shows that he can read their minds. When Lower Four tells him that she doesn’t flee from Hashira when they arrive, he kills her for disagreeing with him. Lower Three realizes that they’re in a hopeless position. If they agree with Muzan or disagree with Muzan, they died. Smartly, but fruitlessly, he flees. Kibutsuji captures and decapitates him. Lower Two begs for more blood, Kibutsuji kills him for ordering him around. When asking Lower One for their last words, they state that they “considers it an honor to die by Kibutsuji’s hands and thanks him for killing him last as he got to witness the agony of the other five.”

This is the answer that Muzan wanted. He rewards him with more of his blood, offering more if Lower One can kill Tanjiro. This episode shows what Muzan values in his demon subordinates, complete subordination. They’re means to an end. He creates them from humans, gives them powers and expects obedience in return. Their strength is his, their thoughts are his and so are their lives. Muzan is short tempered, self absorbed, cruel and lacks empathy. This makes him the perfect villain. I anticipate that he will inspire one of his demons to betray him at some point, if he doesn’t eat them all. Meanwhile, the rest of the episode focuses on the trio. Tanjiro, Inosuke and Zenitsu have all completed their training and are given their next mission. They’re sent to join the flame Hashira, as he investigates the disappearances on the “infinity train.”

After the credits we are given a surprise announcement. The next arc will be a movie. I’m not sure why they choose to make it a movie (I’m hoping that it’s because it’s quicker) but I’m excited. Demon Slayer has been a spectacular series. Combining amazing animation with brilliant action sequences. The characters, both good and bad ones are given deep stories making them complex. Tanjiro is a new spin on the typical Shonen hero and it’s refreshing. Demon Slayer is a remarkable series. I hate to see the season end but can’t wait for the series to return.



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Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 25: Recap & Review

Season 1, Episode 25: Tsuguko, Kanao Tsuyuri

Tanjiro continues his quest to master 24 hour concentration. Accomplishing this wasn’t ever in doubt, especially considering Tanjiro’s work ethic. He of course takes thing to a bit of an extreme. He asks the trio, Naho, Kiyo and Sumi to beat him with carpet beaters if he fails to maintain his breathing while sleeping. Meanwhile, while Tanjiro is working so hard, Zenitsu and Inosuke still refuse to attend training. They begin to feel guilty for their laziness. Zenitsu and Inosuke are manipulated by Shinobu into finally training. As Zenitsu, Tanjiro and Inosuke fuss while training, we see Kanao’s tragic childhood. She was rescued from basically child slavery by Shinobu and Kanae Kocho. Kanao is still mute, but uses a coin to flip and determine her decisions.

The return of Mr. Haganezuka and his associate Kanamori was the main source of comedy in this episode. Haganezuka is unsurprisingly pissed that Tanjiro “snapped” his sword. Meanwhile, Kanamori presents Inosuke with two perfect indigo gray swords. Anyone watching this far knew what Inosuke would do to those perfect swords. He takes a large rock and chips at them, creating jagged edge swords like his old ones. Both Mr. Haganezuka and Kanamori leave angry, with Tanjiro being apologetic. Tanjiro finally recovers completely and manages to catch Kanao during tag. I’ve already predicted that this season will end on some kind of cliffhanger. At the end, we see a new demon killing people on a train. It’s grotesque, having at least two mouths and three eyes. It’s unlikely that they will wrap up this mission in one episode so I’m betting that it gets resolved in the following season.


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Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 24: Recap & Review

Image from Demon Slayer Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 24 of Kanao throwing tea in Tanjiro's face
Kanao throwing tea in Tanjiro’s face

Season 1, Episode 24: ‘Rehabilitation Training’

Finally closer to recovering, Tanjiro, Zenitsu and Inosuke put through “rehabilitation training.” Aoi creates the plan for them. Zenitsu doesn’t start right away. He’s been given the impression from the exhausted look on the faces of Tanjiro and Inosuke that the training is daunting. He is (as expected) petrified by attending the training. However, when the training is explained to him, stretching by girls, then a reflex game and finally a game of tag, Zenitsu is overjoyed by the chance to touch and be touched by pretty girls. After initially finding Zenitsu to be annoying and over the top, I’ve become accustomed to his personality. Zenitsu remains the primary source of comedy in this series, I appreciate that about him.

This episode isn’t all fun and games however. While, Inosuke and Zenitsu abandon training after they fail to capture Kanao, Tanjiro focuses on mastering his breathing. He’s informed that all the Hashira’s and Kanao can use the “Total Concentration Breathing” all day long. Tanjiro begins to increase his training hoping to achieve the feat. He must become able to use his breath to explode special gourds of increasing size, if he’s going to reach the next level. Finally, Tanjiro and Shinobu have a conversation on the roof. She reveals that she’s always angry, after Tanjiro asks why the scent he receives from her is always angry.

Image from Demon Slayer Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 24 of Shinobu's sisters death.
Shinobu’s sisters death

He sister was killed by a demon. Like Tanjiro she had sympathy for demon. Shinobu tried to emulate he sisters smile, but she finds it exhausting to do so. Shinobu decides that she will leave Tanjiro with the mission her sister started, forging relationships with demons. Unfortunately, the new character development seems to suggests that Shinobu will die soon. It think she will find the demon that killed her sister and finally let go of that anger to kill it. This coupled with the fact that Kanao has not so subtly been position as her successor, training under Shinobu and already achieving feats that the other Hashira’s can do. However, I don’t think this will happen this season.

Kyojuro Rengoku on the other hand will likely die this season. In the beginning of the episode, Shinobu asks him where he’s going. He’s likely going to encounter a member of the Upper Ranks. Since Giyu so easily defeat Rui a member of the Lower Ranks, I think we can assume that the higher ranks are significantly stronger. My prediction is that Demon Slayer will leave us with a understanding that Hashira’s aren’t enough and no one is safe. Regardless, Tanjiro, Inosuke and Zenitsu are going to have to get stronger.


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Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 23: Recap & Review

Season 1, Episode 23: Hashira Meeting

Tanjiro begins using his breathing technique to free himself. Giyu stops Obanai from interfering. Nezuko remembers her childhood. She begins to control her instincts, she looks away from Sanemi. Surprising to Sanemi, The Master takes it as evidence that she can be trusted. The Master then tells Tanjiro and Nezuko that they must go out in the world and defeat demons. Tanjiro states that he will “defeat Kibutsuji.” The Master kindly points that Tanjiro is nowhere near as powerful as he needs to be. He tells Tanjiro that he should focus on the Twelve Moon. Tanjiro and Nezuko are taken to Kocho mansion, Butterfly Manor.

They’re escorted into the infirmary. We see Zenitsu whining (as usual) about the pour tasting medicine. He needs the medication to regrow his shortened limbs due to being deformed by the venom. Zenitsu and Tanjiro happily greet each other. Inosuke lays silently in the bed besides Zenitsu. His voice has been damaged by the attack Father inflicted on him. Hoarse, he’s depressed by his lack of strength. Clearly this is going to be an opportunity for Tanjiro, Zenitsu, Inosuke and maybe Nezuko to gt some training. Meanwhile, the Hashira have their meeting. Demons are more active now and they need to increase their recruitment number.

Natagumo states that the quality of the non-Hashira’s members is terrible. However, it’s difficult for the Corps to recruit because humanity is largely ignorant of demons. Only those that have lost love ones to demons and are descendants of former demon slayers. The Corps have a good grasp on their problems. However, the ignorance of humanity can be solved by educating them. If the Corps taught them how to protect themselves from demon (wisteria) it would be harder for demons to kill them and get stronger. Right now the Corps are hidden from the public.

You could imagine that the Corps could become a military force, though that has other problems. Another thing that seems to cause them problems is the informal nature of how they choose demon slayers. Tanjiro was trained by a former Hashira, but his survival wasn’t really certain. The Corps seem unwilling to “hand hold,” at least not until after the final selection. Tanjiro is left to his own devices after he survives, given orders to fight but not how to fight. Basically, the leave them to fend for themselves which isn’t working at all. If they had a mentor continue to train with rookie demon slayers they would be better prepared than they tend to be.


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Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 22: Recap & Review

Season 1, Episode 22: Master of the Mansion

This episode introduces us to the dynamic and colorful Hashira. There are nine Hashira in all and they answer to Ubuyashiki Kagaya. We already meet Giyu Tomioka, the Water Hashira and Shinobu Kocho, the Insect Hashira. The new Hashira’s are Kyojuro Rengoku the Flame Hashira, Tengen Uzui the Sound Hashira who’s obsessed with flamboyance, Love Hashira Mitsuri Kanroji one of the two female Hashira’s with an unnecessary cleavage window, the constantly crying gentle giant, Stone Hashira, Gyomei Himejima.

Muichiro Tokito the Mist Hashira, he’s rather detached or indifferent. The Snake Hashira, Obanai Iguro the serious one with two colored eyes. Finally there’s Sanemi Shinazugawa, the Wind Hashira. He’s an asshole and I predict I might like him at some point. He’s covered in scars that appear to be self inflicted. He’s the most willing to kill Nezuko and Tanjiro. We finally get to see Ubuyashiki Kagaya the blind master. Generally, blind characters are exceptionally strong, I wonder if he is. Regardless, he’s very mild mannered and kind.

He asks the Hashira’s to accept Nezuko and Tanjiro. Surprisingly, due to the reverence they have for him, several of the Hashira’s continue to disagree. Even after reading the letter from Sakonji Urokodaki (in which we find out that Tanjiro, Giyu and Sakonji will commit suicide if Nezuko attacks a human) Sanemi still doesn’t care. He cuts himself, using his blood to try to get Nezuko to show her true self. He stabs her a few more times and opens the box. Nezuko steps out with an angered look on her face.


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Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 21: Recap & Review

Against Corps Rules

We finally get the final moments from Rui. Demon Slayer has established that only Muzan Kibutsuji is the true evil. While the demons he creates do monstrous things and must be stopped they were fundamentally human in the first place. Tanjiro is the demon slayer that understands this most, as his sister Nezuko, Tamayo and Yushiro are evidence that demon aren’t evil at their core. Rui’s background is like all the demons from before, tragic. Born in a frail body he could barely walk. Kibutsuji turned him into a demon, giving him a strong body. His father attempted to kill him. Rui killed him and his mother. He realizes that both his parents intended to commit suicide after they murdered him. Unfortunately, Rui is too late to notice that the bond he thought he never had with his parents, was severed by him.

Kibutsuji told him that it was his parent fault that they were killed for not accepting him. It’s an excuse that Rui never really believed but accepted it anyway. He missed his parents so much that his was never going to be satisfied by the fake family. In the present, Rui’s decapitated body falls just short of Nezuko and Tanjiro. Sensing the scent of grief from Rui, Tanjiro reaches out to Rui. Rui accepts that he will go to hell, never seeing his parents again. However, the seem to meet him in the afterlife. They promise to stay together, whether it’s in heaven or hell. Giyu steps on the remains of Rui, telling Tanjiro that he shouldn’t have sympathy for demons. He then realizes that he has encountered Tanjiro and Nezuko before. He does so just in time to stop Shinobu from killing Nezuko. Prepared to defend Nezuko and Tanjiro, he tells Tanjiro to run.

Shinobu is understandably confused by Giyu’s behavior. As Tanjiro is running he’s knocked to the ground by Tsuyuri, the girl from the Final Selection. Tanjiro tells Nezuko to flee, but is knocked out by Tsuyuri, who then pursues Nezuko. Meanwhile, Giyu has captured Shinobu in a head lock. Before things go too far, Kasugai crows arrive and inform everyone that they’re to take Tanjiro and Nezuko into custody. Inosuke, Zenitsu are to be brought to the Butterfly Mansion for further treatment. Finally, when Tanjiro awakens he’s treated to the sight of the Hashiras. I always thought that Tanjiro and Nezuko would come up against the rules of the corps and general prejudice against demons. I highly doubt she will be harmed, but I wonder if Tanjiro will be forced to leave the demon corps all together.


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Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 20: Recap & Review

Pretend Family

After the last epic episode, I didn’t expect this one to feature any real action. However, I was wrong. While a fight as dramatic as the one from the previous episode didn’t occur, the battles were impactful if for no other reason showing the power of Giyu and Shinobu. The first shocker of this episode was the survival of Rui. Tanjiro begins to succumb to his wounds and use of two breathing techniques. He loses his vision, can’t move and begins to hear loud ringing in his ears. On top of that Rui managed to decapitate himself before Tanjiro could. I don’t know how I feel about his survival. On it’s face it seem ridiculous, but at the same time it was unexpected. As is always the case, the main protagonist (Tanjiro) was never in danger of dying. Giyu’s appearance was predictable. However, that’s not an issue.

I may be the only swordslady among the pillars who can’t cut a demon’s head off. But anyone who creates poison that can kill demons can be quite amazing

Shinobu

Giyu congratulates Tanjiro for surviving so long. Rui attacks him with his threads, Giyu responds with Water Breathing’s eleventh form (there’s only suppose to be ten) that nullify the threads. He then easily decapitates Rui. Meanwhile, the Daughter runs through the woods, remembering how she ended up in the “pretend family.” She was chased by Demon Hunters, but was saved by Rui under the condition that she would join his “family.” She agrees, mostly out of desperation. The white skin is created by consuming Rui’s blood. She runs into Murata and traps him in a cocoon. The cocoon will fill with acidic fluid that will liquify those ensnared.

Enter, Shinobu. At this point I think she’s my favorite character. She has an odd demeanor. She has a smile that doesn’t feel quite genuine. This mask of kindness, is exposed by her actions and what she says. She offers her “friendship,” to the Daughter. In exchange she has some questions to ask. First, “how many people did she kill.” The Daughter lies and says “five.” Shinobu deduces that it must be at least eighty. She believes that if they are to become friends, the Daughter must be tortured for each of her victims. Understandable, the Daughter isn’t interested. Shinobu accepts that they won’t be friends and uses her Insect Breathing. Because of her physical weakness shes can’t decapitate demons. However, she has discovered wisteria-based poison that can kill demons. Shinobu also appears to have a lot of speed as well .

This episode was great. It does show that the twelve aren’t all powerful, but Tanjiro isn’t at there level yet. However, the twelve may not be ranked in a normal manner. I still think Rui’s ranking as “lower five” is odd. It’s implies that there are demons below him and Tanjiro almost beat him. What I mean is that the type of abilities they posses may make the match up different and they’re ranked based on more than just strength. We are also introduced to a new way to kill demons, wisteria poison. It makes perfect sense. I love the introduction of a new dynamic personality in Shinobu. I expect the next few episodes to focus on healing and furthering the story, which I’m looking forward to.


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Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 18: Recap & Review

Shinobu arrives to save Zenitsu

Episode 18, A Forged Bond

I predicted that the Daughter of the Spider Demon family was the one of the twelve, however, I’m not so convinced anymore. She remains a somewhat sweet and timid young girl. I’m now predicting that she will save Tanjiro, based on what happen in this episode. Giyu and Shinobu arrive at Mount Natangumo, witnessing the massacre that occurred. Not really friendly, they decide to split up. Meanwhile, Tanjiro and Inosuke face off against Father. His skin is so tough that neither can cut his arm off. Tanjiro cuts a tree down crushing Father under the water. He attempts to decapitate Father with Water Breathing, Form Ten. However, Father gets up knocking Tanjiro far into the woods. As he flies away, he begs Inosuke “not to die.”

Rui’s powers

As Zenitsu begins to suffer from the effects of the poison, Shinobu arrives. Meanwhile, Tanjiro manages to land safely and witnesses Rui torturing his sister. Tanjiro chastises him for mistreating his sister, but Rui doesn’t seem to care. One of the fellow demon slayers arrive and challenges Rui. He’s quickly kill, as Rui cuts him to pieces. The demon slayer was obviously only there to display the powers of Rui. Meanwhile, Father chases after Inosuke, who then turns around after realizing that he’s “acting like Tanjiro.” He attacks Father, this time with both his swords. He finally manages to cut through his arm, resulting in Father running away. Inosuke isn’t analytical like Tanjiro, but despite how he sees himself he does think his plans through, just at the last minute.

Giyu kills Father

Inosuke find Father hiding in a tree. Just when you think he’s afraid of Inosuke, he molts becoming larger and stronger. His new presence makes Inosuke quit, if only for a few seconds. Father is faster and stronger now. Inosuke attempts to cut Fathers head off, resulting in his swords breaking in half. Father then picks Inosuke up by the head and begins to crush the skull of Inosuke. When Inosuke begins to spit up blood, Giyu arrives and cuts Father’s arm off. Father quickly regrows his arm. However, this doesn’t matter because, Giyu quickly dispatches Father.

Tanjiro is in danger

Finally, Tanjiro feels more confident fighting Rui. He attacks him head on, however, his sword is cut in half as we cut to the credits. Obviously, Tanjiro will survive, but there no reasonable way he can avoid getting sliced. Considering how the Rui power cut the demon slayer into pieces earlier, Tanjiro could lose an arm. That said I get the impression that Shinobu has some healing abilities and probably will fix it right up.

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 17: Recap & Review

Episode 17, You Must Master a Single Thing

Zenitsu was always going to be a character that required getting use to. I always figured that with this series he would be more than a coward. While he remains one, he has shown some willingness to change. This episode gives him more complexity. Zenitsu flees from the creepy spiders demons with human heads. Turns out that when the original human head spider demon injects venom into humans they become spider demons. Of course, Zenitsu is bitten on the hand. Zenitsu panics in a tree. We get a flashback, of him crying in a tree (with brown hair). His master (Gramps) begs him to get out of the tree. Zenitsu realizes that while he wants to live up to the expectations of his master, he lacks the ability to do so.

Zenitsu’s ability to use lighting causes him to be struck by it, turning his hair yellow and knocking out the tree. When his hair falls out he faints and goes into his trance. We learn that Zenitsu has only mastered one attack, Thunder Breath: First Form. However, he’s managed to perfect the form. In another flashback, his Master gives him permission to cry and run away, but not to give up. However, another student, Kaigaku, bullies him. He considers him a “waste of time.” Zenitsu, being an orphan, only had his Master to support him, having been abandoned by everyone else. As he starts to cough up blood, Zenitsu still in his trance, turns up the power.

He begins to move at lightning fast speeds, and decapitates the Spider Demon. He falls, being crippled by the poison. He uses the breathing techniques to slow the effects of the poison. Meanwhile, Tanjiro hears his attack and plans to investigate. However, the “Daughter” of the Spider demon family shows up. Inosuke follows her. She flees, calling for her “Father” that arrives from above. He begins to attack Inosuke and Tanjiro. I suspect that the Father isn’t actually the member of the Twelve, but his Daughter is. This series likes to play with our expectations. The seeming fearful Daughter being the member of the Twelve would do just that.

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 16: Recap & Review

Episode 16, Letting Someone Else Go First

Murata offers to hold off the controlled Demon Slayers, allowing Inosuke and Tanjiro to progress. They run into a living member of the Demon Slayers. Controlled, she is force to fight beyond her psychical limits. Rui, the male child demon, arrives to tell his “mother” to hurry up. In this moment we get the impression that they’re not really that close, as the demon doesn’t want Rui to tell his father. As a result she becomes inpatient. She increases her intensity with regard to how she uses the female Demon Slayer, breaking her bones as she swings violently.

Tanjiro, not looking to kill anyone, decides to toss the girl into the tree tangling the webs. Inosuke eager to prove he can do what Tanjiro can dose the same to the remaining two. Mother, now angry, breaks all of their necks. This was a shocking turn of evens for me. I mean all the work Tanjiro did, lead us into believing that he would be rewarded for his efforts. This isn’t the first time Tanjiro will be let down, but it was surprising that they weren’t saved. Regardless, they have no choice but to move on. Mother releases her “trump card,” a headless demon doll with bladed arms.

Meanwhile, Zenitsu is wandering the forest whining and loudly calling for Nezuko. He is followed by the smaller spider demon. Considering his advanced hearing it’s likely the case that he knows he’s being followed or will realize it at some point. When that happens he’s likely to run than fight. Anyway, Inosuke is becoming an interesting character. He seems like a complete moron that doesn’t think thing through, however, it seems like he does think on some level. He’s also appears to have developed an admiration for Tanjiro. Together they defeat the demon doll by working together, with Tanjiro taking the lead.

Tanjiro is tossed in the air by Inosuke, this sends him towards Mother. It’s unclear whether Inosuke intended to that or was mindlessly throwing Tanjiro in the air. Regardless, Tanjiro heads for Mother preparing to decapitate her. She initially is preparing to defend herself but decides that she rather die. When Tanjiro notices that her body language changed, he shifted to a more gentle form killing her without pain. We see her interaction with Father. The dynamic is clearly modeled what is typical for a domestic abuse situation. As usual, the demon is a former victim with a sad backstory. As a reward for his kindness, she tells Tanjiro that a member of the Twelve is around.