I am becoming more and more convinced that the 3-episode rule is both a flawed concept of watching anime, and also a pretty great way to a sense of a series. If that sounds weird, then it really is, but as I keep watching anime seasons I am finding that there is no real bulletproof way to look at a series.
Case in point, the anime that we are discussing today is that kind of show that can’t really fit nicely into the 3 episode rule. After the cut let’s take a look at Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba.
Getting this right out of the way at the start, Demon Slayer is an absolutely beautiful show. Studio Ufotable clearly has put the millions (like hundreds of fucking millions) of the money from Fate: Grand Order, to good use. This anime has movie quality work in every corner and..fuck, it just looks beautiful. The feats this studio is able to pull off during the fight scenes are an absolute wonder.
Aside from that though, Demon Slayer feels very much like a spiritual successor to Full Metal Alchemist, in that it is a story of two siblings trying to fix a problem thrust upon them. Yet while Full Metal Alchemist’s story rooted in christian themes (yes it was) and the idea of “not trying to fly too close to the sun”, Demon Slayer feels very much like an old Japanese folktale. It also follow in the footsteps of last year’s mega hit Golden Kamuy in that it takes place in a Japanese era that is a little be underused in the modern anime landscape.
Another thing I enjoyed about the show is that it, thankfully, does not have a school setting. Before I dropped out of the anime season about *check notes* five years ago, I had attempted to watch the show Blue Exorcist, another show that had a Full Metal Alchemist vibe but immediately became just another run of the mill school show. Thankfully while Demon Slayer does have a “training arc” there thankfully isn’t a school or academy in sight and fully commits to the premise it is in.
With 13 episodes under it’s belt, like most two cour series, Demon Slayer is just starting to get it’s story underway with most of the key characters getting introduced. The story arcs have been relatively small, a span of two or three episodes, but each of them has been chalk full of unique enemies, beautiful settings and great characters. Our leads Tanjiro and his sister Nezuko (who must be protected at all costs, she is best girl of the decade) are a great pair who again, feel very much like spiritual homage to Full Metal Alchemist’s Elric Brothers. Series villain Muzan Kibutsuji has been an admirable foe so far, but remains very much in the background for this first half. Finally while I didn’t care much for recurring character Zenitsu, (or at all), I’ve heard he gets better and he has done much to redeem himself in the last episode.
I’ll admit that I wasn’t completely pulled into Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba when it first came out, probably because I was upset that Ufotable wasn’t doing something related to Fate. However after this first cour I’ve completely changed my mind; this is an absolutely amazing show with great characters, beautiful animation and a simple, but effective story set in a great Japanese era, plus it doesn’t wimp out on the blood and gore either. Very much like last year, it seems that both this show and Love is War might have to share the title for anime of the year for me. We still have two season left though, but Demon Slayer was a bright gem in an extremely mediocre spring anime season, let’s hope it stays that way.
One thought on “Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba First Cour: Making it Rain with Fate Money”
“Nezuko thankfully isn’t a by-stander in the series. Also Best Girl 2019.”
Did you see her in episode 14?
I think she increased the chances of clinching the “Best Girl” title this year!