Anime

Demon Slayer Season 2, Episode 17: The Entertainment District arc comes to an epic conclusion

Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 17, “Never Give Up,” opens with a scene of despair. Tengen’s unconscious, Inosuke lies motionless with a gapping hole in his chest, while Zenitsu struggles under rubble. All of the Yoshiwara District is enflamed. Tanjiro is the only one awake and is in shocked at the surrounding horrors. He blames himself. If he wasn’t so distracted he would have been more useful. He apologizes to everyone before Gyutaro appears. The Upper Rank Six takes joy in the predicament Tanjiro and the others find themselves. In a flashback, Tanjiro is reminded by Nezuko that humans “can never expect everything to go their way.” He should stop blaming himself and fight harder.

Gyutaro asks Tanjiro if Nezuko is his sister and when confirms that she is, the Upper Demon mocks him for failing to protect her. Gyutaro’s cruelty is on full display. He breaks several of Tanjiro’s fingers and begins pulling his hair, and slapping him. It’s like he’s pulling wings of a butterfly. His arrogance may be well founded but it’s also allows Tanjiro to gain the upper hand. Fleeing with Nezuko, Tanjiro grabs one of Tengen’s poisoned kunai’s. He uses one of his headbutts to distract Gyutaro from noticing the kunai in his leg. Caught of guard, Tanjiro is able to cut Gyutaro’s neck with Hinokami Kagura.

Daki watches her brother torture Tanjiro in Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 17
Daki watches her brother torture Tanjiro in Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 17

The sibling relationship between Daki and Gyutaro and Nezuko and Tanjiro is made explicit when Tanjiro mistakes Daki’s voice for Nezuko. He envisions himself as a demon, believing that the Demon Slayer Corps would “have the mercy to kill him.” Unfortunately for Tanjiro his cut isn’t instant and Gyutaro struggles while Daki looks on concerned. She finally attempts to stop Tanjiro with her Obi, when Zenitsu erupts from the rubble to stop her with Thunder Breathing. Confident she can handle a move she’s seen so often, Daki is taken by surprise when Zenitsu uses Thunder Breathing, First Form: Thunderclap and Flash, God Speed.

He manages to cut the obi in Daki’s neck. Zenitsu hopes that he can decapitate Daki at the same time Tanjiro cut’s Gyutaro’s neck. However, Gyutaro is able to overcome the weakened Tanjiro and put him on the defensive. Enraged, Gyutaro increases the speed of his attacks and prepares to gouge Tanjiro’s eye out when Tengen appears. The Hashira stopped his own heart and in doing so the poison. Tengen declares the he can now use his “Musical Score Technique.” He’s able to hear Gyutaro’s blood blade as if they were parts of a score. This allows him to deflect them.

Tengen and Gyutaro clash in a fire display of explosions. Meanwhile, Tanjiro stalks in the background, looking for the chance to decapitate Gyutaro. When Gyutaro stabs Tengen and cuts his eye, Tanjiro leaps up and slashes at the Upper Demon’s neck. However, Gyutaro manages to stab Tanjiro through the jaw. Tanjiro is determined to use everything he has to kill the demon and his mark ignites granting him enough strength. Gyutaro assumes his sister won’t be decapitated, along with him. Zenitsu runs out of strength but Inosuke appears. He strikes from the opposite direction. In a epic moment, the trio manages to send the Upper Rank sibling heads flying. But the celebratory moment is short lived as Gyutaro explodes.

Demon Slayer remains one of the best anime series and this episode is certainly evidence to this fact. The animation was stunning. I couldn’t help but notice the parallels between this fight and the one with Rengoku. The trio were simply bystanders then but this time they were active participants. The same limitation between humans and demons was present. As Gyutaro notes, human are inherently weaker than demons. He also offers to turn Tanjiro into a demon just like Akaza did to Rengoku. Of course the outcome seems different. The demons are dead and the Hashira is alive. Had Tengen fought alone, he would have joined Rengoku. Next weeks episode will be the final one of the season, I’m looking forward to seeing Daki and Gyutaro backstory.

Check Out Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 16 Review.

Anime

Demon Slayer Season 2, Episode 16: Gyutaro dominates Tanjiro and Tengen

Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 16, “Defeating an Upper Rank Demon,” leaves Tanjiro, Zenitsu, Inosuke, and Tengen are in mortal danger. Tanjiro and Tengen attempt to decapitate Gyutaro, who quickly removes the kunai, regenerates his legs, and neutralized the wisteria poison. Gyutaro responds with Blood Demon Art, Rotating Circular Slashes: Flying Blood Sickles, his blood pours out of his arms forming spinning blood blades. Sensing the danger, Tengen kicks Tanjiro out of the way and activates Sound Breathing, Fourth Form: Constant Resounding Slashes. The Hashira spins his swords while fireworks explode. He manages to destroy the blood blades from Gyutaro.

The trio decided to fight together in Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 16
The trio decided to fight together in Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 16

In the explosion, Gyutaro disappears. At this point Tengen’s wife Hinatsuru becomes the target. Despite being shinobi, Tengen’s wives are largely helpless. Granted Hinatsuru was already injured, but she becomes a burden in this fight. I’m relieved when she finally leaves. Before that however, Tanjiro steps up to rescue her from Gyutaro. Being underestimated, Tanjiro is ignored by Gyutaro. This let’s him think. Tanjiro combines Water Breathing and Hinokami Kagura increasing the speed of the Kagura Breathing and adding power to Water Breathing. Sakonji Urokodaki apparently taught him “to modify the style into any form.” Tanjiro suggests that the other Breathing forms were created this way. I wonder if Tanjiro will merge the two styles in a more official matter.

Meanwhile, Inosuke and Zenitsu are struggling to get close to Daki. Her obis overwhelms them, preventing them from getting to her neck. Inosuke becomes impatient watching Gyutaro almost get his head cut off. However, he still can’t reach Daki. Zenitsu, who’s still asleep, tells him to calm down. Tengen and Tanjiro once again fail to decapitate Gyutaro, who manages to grab their blade with flesh from his sickles, then twists his head around to stop Tengen’s other blade. With his prey captured, Gyutaro uses his Rotating Circular Slashes again. This time Tengen pulls himself and Gyutaro away to fight alone. Hinatsuru, Tanjiro, Zenitsu, and Inosuke are left to face Daki on the roof.

After Hinatsuru leaves, the trio decide to use Tanjiro and Zenitsu to defend Inosuke, as he uses Beast Breathing, Eighth Fang: Explosive Rush. The three combine their techniques and Inosuke successfully decapitates Daki’s head. With her head in tow, Inosuke runs off with her head preventing Daki from reattaching. It’s a light hearted moment that is quickly ended by Gyutaro stabbing Inosuke through the chest. Tanjiro is shocked and quickly looks around to see what happened to Tengen. The Sound Hashira lays on the ground with his left hand severed. Suddenly, Daki’s obi destroy the surrounding houses. Zenitsu pushes Tanjiro out of the way.

Everything is looking grim for our heroes. The only chance they had was to team up with Tengen but he seems outmatched by Gyutaro. Tanjiro is barely holding it together, Nezuko is asleep, Zenitsu still knows only one move, and Inosuke is mortally wounded. Despite this predicament, I’m certain that Tengen has more in reserve and most likely Tanjiro too. I’ll admit that the Beast Breathing and Tengen’s Sound Breathing Fourth Form were underwhelming. Inouske’s technique doesn’t really have any well flash and the flashy Tengen’s technique seem cheesy. At the very least his Sound Breathing should be more explosive. I get that elements like fire, water, and lightning are easier to render, but I still want more from the other styles.

Anime

Demon Slayer Season 2, Episode 14: The secret hiding in Daki

The main theme of Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 14 is transformation, hence it’s title. Daki and Nezuko are the ones who transform, but in opposite directions. Daki loses her confidence and while Nezuko gains some. They both end up crying but for completely different reasons. Nezuko goes through a mental transformation. She enjoys the violent abuse she inflicts on Daki. When she gets a scent of human blood she prepares to attack. This means that when Nezuko transforms she’s looses all the control she had. To be clear, Nezuko has never been unaffected by blood but she’s always resisted. Luckily, Tanjiro arrives to hold her back. He’s desperate to keep his sisters from killing, especially considering all the consequences that will occur if they fail.

Like getting skinned alive or maybe getting your belly slit open

– Gyutaro

Daki loses her head in Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 14
Daki loses her head in Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 14

Nezuko misses her family and snaps out of her rage buy singing a lullaby their mother use to sing. Her tears are born from sorrow, whereas, Daki’s tears are largely due to her bruised ego. Poor, poor Daki. First, she gets humiliated by a rampaging Nezuko. Then Uzui decapitates her and dismisses her power, claiming she “too weak” to be a “Upper Demon.” Her insecurities rise to the surface. She practically begs Uzui to believe she strong. She becomes whinny, screeching and crying. Daki becomes pathetic. Demon Slayer has always tried to balance its more sentimental moments with action. This episode definitely exemplifies that.

I’m amazing, you hear me?

I rarely notice voice acting in anime but the voices of Daki and her brother Gyutaro were perfect. Daki’s high pitched wailing and nonstop talking really sold her desperation. However, her brothers voice was perfect. I’m not going to be able to do it justice by describing it, but it’s creepy. Both voices irate the ear but still felt appropriate. This episode suggested something tragic happened to both Daki and Gyutaro. When Nezuko’s Demon Art sets Daki ablaze, she recalls a brief flashback and says it’s “just like that day.” In the flashback we see a swordsmen and a female silhouette.

Gyutaro body is emaciated and he has a cringy tendency to scratch himself. It think he starved as a human and gave his little sister any food they had. Together, Daki and Gyutaro are, according to Gyutaro “two people in one.” Gyutaro is clearly the stronger of the two, but if they fight together, Daki’s obis could become a problem. Gyutaro has a powerful Blood Demon Art. As Tengen noticed he has amazing reflects. With his speed, Uzui might be able to avoid most of their attacks, but I think he’ll need help. I like the fact that Demon Slayer is willing to let other characters shine, but it seems odd if Inosuke, Tanjiro, and Zenitsu just sit idly by and watch. Regardless, I’m excited to see how this fight goes.

Anime

Demon Slayer Season 2, Episode 13: Tanjiro and Nezuko let loose

Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 13, “Layered Memories” is an action packed episode that adds to the lore of demons and may have exposed Muzan’s only weakness. Daki gains more power as her obi sashes are absorbed. Her hair changes white, as she get excited at the prospect of facing another Hashira. She ignores Tanjiro who’s already struggling psychically. After she destroys part of a city block, killing several people and maiming another. Tanjiro is also cut deeply trying to reflect her attack. Witnessing the carnage Daki created and her indifference to the suffering, Tanjiro explodes with rage.

Tanjiro rages after Daki kills innocents in Demon Slayer Episode 13
Tanjiro rages after Daki kills innocents in Demon Slayer Episode 13

Demons have nothing to lose

Daki tries to escape but Tanjiro grabs her by the leg, attempting to decapitate her. She evades, only losing her foot. Like most demons at her level she quickly heals. Demon Slayer has consistently made the point that humans are at a natural disadvantage against demons. Tanjiro has always felt like he was struggling against the more powerful Daki. He constantly under pressure, pushing his body past its natural limits just to inflict pain on the Upper Demon. Bloodshot and determined, Tanjiro accelerates towards Daki. She uses Blood Demon Art: Eight-Layered Obi Slash trying to cut Tanjiro into pieces.

Tanjiro uses Hinokami Kagura: Burning Bones, Summer Sun, creating a series of circular flame spirals. Daki feels pain from the burning and cannot regenerate quickly. Daki leaps to another house, wondering how Tanjiro can still move. Following the demon, Tanjiro manages to cut Daki’s neck, but she protects herself using a soft sash. Feeling the heat, she increases her sashes to 13. Tanjiro is able to easily parry them as they appear to move slowly. He stabs all the obis, pinning them down. With explosive movement, he leaps into the air slashing the obi with fiery strikes. It’s an amazing moment that displays what makes Demon Slayer such an amazing series, beautiful animation, colorful design, and impressive action.

The evolution of Nezuko

Nezuko occupies a strange position in the Demon Slayer series. She not a very active character. She’s literally muzzled and sleeping in a box most of the time. Nezuko is often out of sight and out of mind. Obviously, she can’t walk around during the day but she could come out at night. If we consider the fact that most humans are ignorant of demons existence and their white skin doesn’t trigger too much suspicion (Muzan claims he has a special disease) there’s no reason for her to be so absent. Especially, because she protects Tanjiro more than her protects her. Anyway, that trend continues.

Tanjiro apparently stopped breathing while he was fighting and just before he decapitates Daki, he’s stopped by a vision of his sister telling him “to breathe.” Tanjiro collapses in agony, giving Daki a chance to capitalize. Suddenly, Nezuko appears behind her and crushes Daki’s head while sending the demon flying. Nezuko attacks Daki with her trademark right kick. Daki slices off her leg, arm, and cuts deep into her torso. Nezuko has never eaten a human and hasn’t developed in the normal way demon tend to.

Like Tamayo, Nezuko escapes the control Muzan exerts on his progeny. Regardless, Nezuko begins to regenerate, according to Daki at “a Upper Demon level,” develops vinelike markings and grows a horn. She stomps Daki into the ground giving her a menacing stare. Nezuko shouldn’t have this much power especially considering she doesn’t train at all. It conflicts with the painful effort demon slayers like Tanjiro put into their breathing. Granted she’s a demon so they generally have it easier than humans. However, she doesn’t even have to consume humans like those demons.

Marks, Scars, and Cells

Demon Slayer Episode 13 introduces the more subtle aspects of the power system of the series, marks, scars, and cells. When Muzan creates a demon he gives a human his blood, this process is “performed at a cellular level.” Normally, Muzan maintains control over demons, but for some reason Nezuko and Tamayo can’t be controlled. One thing they both refused to do is eat humans which is likely the main reason. In this episode, Shinjuro Rengoku writes Tanjiro a letter in which he explains that Sun Breathing users have a “red mark on their forehead.” While Tanjiro denies he’s the “chosen one” claiming that he got the scar through other means, I think Shinjuro is one to something. Especially after we witness the memories of Muzan. The man in the vision has the mark Shinjuro referred to.

I don’t know who the man in the vision was but I don’t think it was Tanjiro’s father. Maybe a grandfather? It doesn’t matter. What is important to know is that Muzan was afraid of this Demon Slayer, who like Tanjiro can use Sun Breathing. Nezuko’s markings are only seen, but it’s obvious they’re associated with her transformation. I expect we’ll get more information next episode. This episode was great. While Nezuko’s transformation is a bit of an ass pull, I’m still excited to see her fight.

Anime

Demon Slayer Season 2, Episode 12: The power of Hinokami Kagura and Tengen

Short Summary:

While Tanjiro fights Daki alone and becomes overwhelmed by the strain Hinokami Kagura. Tengen finds his first wife, Hinatsuru. After he gives her the antidote he goes in search of the demon. Using his hearing to find Zenitsu, Inosuke, and his two wives fighting underground. Inosuke, Zenitsu, and Tengen all get a chance to show off how flashy they can be.

In Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 12 Tanjiro uses Hinokami Kagura
In Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 12 Tanjiro uses Hinokami Kagura

Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 12 goes to get pains to show how much effort it takes for demon slayers to fight. Even the focus on “breathing,” something we assume would require very little effort, feels exhausting. In a flashback, Tanjiro recalls the intense pressure attempting to use Flame Dance: Clear Blue Sky caused. At the time it’s “sheer force,” was too much for him to handle. In the present, Tanjiro remembers Rengoku’s words: “set your heart ablaze.” He performs Hinokami Kagura: Raging Sun, successful cutting Daki’s obi. The Upper Demon quickly notices the “sharpening” of Tanjiro’s skills. However, he’s still not able to handle Hinokami and collapses.

Daki attempts to gain the advantage and kill Tanjiro while he’s incapacitated on the ground. In danger, Tanjiro uses Recovery Breathing to regain his some of his movement. Throughout this fight, Daki is impressed Tanjiro has kept up, but she’s not the least bit concerned. It’s clear that Tanjiro is already heading towards his end. Regardless, he’s determined to protect the innocent. Meanwhile, Inosuke is terrorizing the women in the brothel as he rampages, while searching for the demon. He finds the hole leading to the demon lair and creepily dislocates his joints to slither through the tunnel. Once inside, Inosuke finds Daki’s Obi, draped around like webbing. He finds he victims trapped inside including Zenitsu.

Maybe you should stay asleep the whole time

– Inosuke

Things are going to get real flashy

Suddenly, the sash, with a face and mouth, begins attacking Inosuke. He easily avoids it, while freeing the captured humans. Daki orders the sash to catch Inosuke and the “ten most beautiful,” she can kill all the rest. Makio and Suma help battle the “worm belt,” as Inosuke calls it. Inosuke is concerned if the worm belt isn’t the real body then he will be stuck down their “forever.” Without warning, Zenitsu uses Thunder Breathing, First Form: Thunderclap and Flash, Sixfold, and begins cutting up the sashes. While Zenitsu was causing a ruckus, Tengen was crashing through the ground. He enters the lair in epic fashion. The worm belt instantly identifies Tengen as a Hashira. Tengen attacks, slicing the belt into tiny pieces.

Demon Slayer Season 2 Episode 12 shows us the difference between the trio and Tengen. First the worm belt is impressed with Inosuke’s “intuition”, his ability to “detect murderous intent”. He’s able to avoid the worm belt’s attacks. Zenitsu, who still needs to be unconscienced has amazing speed but wasn’t able to kill the worm belt either. When Tengen appears, the worm belt doesn’t have time to dodge. Tengen’s speed overwhelms her and she’s quickly killed. The gap in power between Inosuke, Zenitsu, and Tanjiro when compared to Tengen and Daki is notable.