Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 10 – A Friendly Game of Kickball

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Welcome back one and all. Have you been looking forward to this week’s Demon Slayer? We were right in the middle of a deadly fight after all. Sort of an awkward place to leave things. I know I wanted to see the conclusion. How about you Crow?

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Absolutely (I say in bold print)! And — I don’t think is a spoiler or anything — we even get a brief replay of the final moments of the battle. In case we forgot. True to form!

Where are my manners… As always, I will be having the pleasure of discussing this episode with my friend Crow of Crow’s World of Anime and of course all of you! Not that there’s all that much to spoil, but we’re going to go into the episode in some detail, so if you haven’t seen it yet and don’t want to be spoiled, I suggest you tab out for half an hour or so and go watch it, Crow and I will wait. Also, I’m in plain text this week!

Are you proud of me Crow? I finally learned how to put all the proper disclaimers at the beginning of posts!

You can’t hear, but I’m clapping in appreciation. I knew you could do it!

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I can hear it in my heart

Episode 9 wasted no time, we were brought straight back to Tanjiro and Yahaba

desperately trying to murder each other. I thought Yahaba was an interesting character, or at least potentially interesting. You know — interesting design, interesting power the creepy calm cryptic type. Triple C! But well, it turns out he was already done for! Were you hoping to see more of him, Crow?

Perceptive question! Yes, I was. There were hints of character richness there, to the point where I expected him to not be dead. It was only when his skull began to actually disintegrate that I figured yep, he’s dying.

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awww man, that’s gonna leave a mark

I’m not sure exactly how it works but I’m assuming the water that Tanjiro summons is considered an extension of his blade since it could kill a demon. Did we get an explanation?

Not that I saw, but I agree with your theory. His sword’s water effects must be an extension of the blade, at least insofar as it affects demons. Back in episode 7, we saw his water powers rip the two under water (well, under swamp) demons apart, and they stayed dead. So I guess it’s the same thing?

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I thought it was because they were shades maybe?

Despite get summarily dispatched, Yahaba actually managed to put up quite a fight for the few seconds he was still standing (well, less standing and more lying about evaporating…). I quite liked the aftermath. Like isn’t the right word. Seeing Tanjiro barely able to move from exhaustion and injury after his fight, just laying on the ground wheezing, went a long way to drive the impact of the confrontation home. I could almost feel it along with Tanjiro and what I felt was a great deal of relief with a sprinkle of pity and melancholy.

Wasn’t that great? So often, heroes walk away from a battle with a cut or a scrape. Tanjiro got pummeled, and he looked it. Were you impressed by how dedicated he was to getting to the other side of the compound where his sister and new friends were fighting? He took the sword in his teeth because his arms were too tired. Kinda reminded me of Violet Evergarden!

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ok!

But of course, that was just half the story. Over on the other side of the grounds, the rest of them were trying to deal with Susamaru. I was a bit confused as to why Tanjiro was so panicked about this. Sure, Susamaru is very strong, but hadn’t they determined that she was weaker than Yahaba? And these were 3 demons she was dealing with. Then I remembered that Neuko was seriously injured, Tamayo seems to be a non-combatant, and my favourite Yushiro just grew back his head. Yeah…there may be some trouble there.

As happy as I was to see Nezuko alive and kicking(ha!) again, I have to say completely healing her off camera like that felt like a cop-out. Not only does it seem that she instantly recovered, but she can now kick those tamari without losing a foot, for… reasons. That’s a bit convenient wouldn’t you say, Crow?

If I had to point to one serious disappointment in this episode, it was that moment. You’re right! And as evidence, remember how Yushiro freaked out in the previous episode when Nezuko even looked like she was going to try to kick the ball? Sure, Tamayo said her serum gave Nezuko a power boost without human blood, but it seemed pretty dang convenient.

Though you’re also right about something else: Their soccer footwork!

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just try to get one past me!

I liked that lightening of the mood by turning a battle for survival into soccer practice, it was a cute scene.

It was interesting seeing Susamaru gaining respect for Nezuko’s footwork!

Despite the fact that things seemed to be going quite well, Tamayo was worried. We learned two important facts. 1) Nezuko is gaining strength at a prodigious rate, especially considering she’s never eaten human flesh (allegedly) and 2) Susamaru was quite literally toying with them and Neuko wouldn’t stand a chance against her real strength. And so it was time for a grown-up to step in.

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that hir is so perfect

Tamayo has been playing it coy. Standing back and acting very delicate. But she hasn’t survived all this time in defiance of Kibutsuji because she’s anything resembling weak. Her poise, power and words ripped through the unfortunate demon before she could realize what was happening. And those words struck a chord with me as well. Crow, do you think Tamayo was just trying to get under her opponent’s skin or was there some truth to that story of Kibutsuji living in fear? If so, it makes the character even more interesting!

There’s a lot to decompress from that moment, isn’t there? First, Tamayo has really impressed me. What a tragic character who chooses not to wallow in that tragedy but decides instead of fight in her own way to rid the world of a terrible evil. That’s noble stuff! Yes, I think she was trying to get under Susamaru’s skin (and doing an admirable job of it!), but I think there’s some truth to what she was saying. Remember in episode 8 where Kibutsuji was able to shrug off plain rudeness, but lost his temper completely when the poor drunk dude quested his unhealthy appearance? There was something driving that reaction, and I think it might have been an almost paranoid level of fear.

Good point…he did hate being called sick… hhmmm…

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he’s afraid of responsibility!

Turns out the blood spell Tamayo was casting activated the Kibutsuji demon cells in Susamaru’s body and essentially destroyed her from within. Visually it was a visceral scene and possibly the most gruesome to date. It’s going to stick with me. And Tamayo calmly explaining that she had never been one of the 12 demon moons because she didn’t have a number on her eyeball, while pointing to sais stray eyeball on the floor, certainly didn’t make it any less gruesome!

[ A question: Was it merely Tamayo’s spell, or was there actually a curse from Kibutuji, where if a demon speaks his name, his cells within them rip them apart? Wasn’t Tamayo’s goal to goad her into speaking the name? I think that’s what I got from Tamayo’s description…]

I do know Kibutsuji’s curse gives him control over those who have his blood ad his cells eventually kill them. Didn’t they mention something about him keeping his identity secret and therefore making it impossible for other demons to give him away. That’s why the teeth grinding guy was so panicked a few episodes ago. I’m guessing that basically extends to speaking his name out loud. That’s how I’m taking it… I guess he is very paranoid!

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Crow thought we should take his questions out but it’s good

Was that horrifying and pitiable all at the same time or what? The two demons had been deluded into thinking they were powerful and on the inside with the demon they revered, but nope.

In the end, Susamaru went like all the major demons have gone so far. Small, scared and pathetic. A lost child who ended up and a very wrong path. I understand why they are setting up this moral dilemma, trying to build up sympathy for the demons, but can’t we just have one of them that’s an actual bad guy? At this rate, I’m going to end up having a really difficult time cheering for the Demon Slayer Army.

Tanjiro’s parting words here were the final nail in the coffin (um sorry, poor choice of expression). There is no salvation to be had for demons. Their sins are too great, the burdens upon their souls cannot be lifted. A tragic realization that is sure to make Tanjiro even more eager to find a cure for Nezuko.

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how? 

I continue to like Tanjiro’s reactions. His push to understand puts him at odds with most of the other demon slayers we’ve met. At odds with the demons, too. He’s doing his own thing and he’s trying to maintain his core humanity at the same time. Tough balancing act.

You’d think that with those intense battles out of the way and all the useful exposition we got, the episode would be basically over. Nothing left but a quick, sweet wrap up to tie everything together in a nice little bow and send the audience away with a smile on their faces, ready for episode 11. In a way, it did exactly that! But it also did much more.

It was my favourite part of the episode.

Oh! Oh! I’m looking forward to this, because it was my favorite part, too! Go on!

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all the cuteness

My two favourite characters are Yoshiro (because I love comedy relief and a proper foil character) and Nezuko (because I’m predictable). They both played important roles in this part. Yoshiro’s various intensely exasperated faces at getting patted on the head by Neuko, or at the horror of potentially taking Nezuko with them, were so much fun to watch. By contrast, the mundanely painful sight of seeing him wasting away from disease brought all the death we’ve been seeing back down to a terrifyingly relatable level.

What Irina didn’t tell you is that Tanjiro joined the other three in the basement after he’d finished with his vigil to watch Susamaru finally turn to ash. As soon as he entered, Nezujo ran to him and threw her arms around his neck. A perfect “awwwww!” moment. Then, she ran back down the hall and did the same thing to Tamayo! Even better, she patted Yushiro on the head! There was almost too much adorable in the room at that point!

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awwwww indeed

For her part, Nezuko seems to almost be taking advantage of the suggestion she’s under. Relishing in seeing her family again. Overflowing with love for everyone in the room. Of course, the interesting part is that Tamayo and Yoshiro are not in fact human at all. But she’s decided to see them as such and therefore as part of the family. Which begs the question, how much is imposed suggestion, how much is willful self-delusion?

I really liked that Tanjiro finally addressed the question directly and acknowledged that he was uncomfortable with the situation as well, but that he’s accepted it because it seems that Nezuko has retained her free will. Thank You! That makes me feel so much better for some reason. Now we can all move on!

That free will bit? That was everything. It seemed to me that Nezuko is capapulting her mind off delusion into a greater truth: that Tamayo and Yushiro, by virtue of their choices, are in fact part of her family. It makes them human in the sense of members of the human community. I love that message!

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when the lies are so sweet….

Tamayo and Yoshiro will be leaving town out of precaution, and Tamayo invites Neuko to join them, as they will know how to take care of her. Yoshiro is the one to watch in this scene. Despite acknowledging the wisdom of the offer, the siblings decide to stick together and Neuko runs out the door. Just as Tanjiro s about to run after her, Yoshiro calls him back and staying with his back to Tanjiro the entire time, admits that his little sister is a real beauty.

How adorable was that moment?

Very, very adorable! And did you see who drove the decision for them to stay together? Tanjiro wavered. He wants her to be safe as desperately as he wants her to stay beside him! But Nezuko took his hand and gave him a look that spoke volumes. It’s as articulate as I’ve seen her be so far!

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that face!

If I remember correctly, Zenitsu was your favourite right Crow? Want to tell us about the closing scene?

Cool — thanks! Zenitsu is among my favorite characters in this series — and the list is growing! But, poor Zenitsu! Tanjiro’s on his way to his next assignment — his Crow being a real pest like only we Crows can be — when both of them stop because they hear this tearful voice. It’s Zenitsu! He’s begging this bewildered and disgusted girl to marry him because he could die at any time!

Zenitsu needs to work on his communication skills…

Where was his birdy?

Few away in embarrassment?

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good guess

And another great episode down. Demon slayer has been consistently entertaining and does not seem to be losing momentum at all. I wish Tamayo and Yushiro could have stuck around a bit longer but I bet we’ll see them again. Any closing thoughts?

Isn’t Tanjiro supposed to gather tissue samples for Tamayo? Shouldn’t he have her forwarded address or something? Other than that, I’m still thinking of Tamayo’s tears as Nezuko hugged her!

Previous episode reviews

Demon Slayer ep10 (22)

Hooray for more pictures!

 

Irina

I'm much nicer than I seem, we should be friends!

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24 Responses

  1. Is the section “You should read these” new? I like that! Nice cross section of sites listed, too!

  2. Karandi says:

    I had a lot of fun with this episode but my biggest issue was how fast Tanjiro recovered from crawling on the ground sword in mouth to just heading off with Nezuko. I kind of felt there should have been a bit of a recovery/convalescence period given how exhausted and injured he looked. Still, very fun episode and I really enjoyed Nezuko in the second half.

    • I noticed that. I also noticed I filled in the blanks by telling myself that he’s in the remnants of Tamayo the demon doctor’s house, so she must have healed him off screen. Still, it might have been nice to see it!

      • Karandi says:

        I’m just not sure when that would have happened. It seemed like everyone else went down to the basement while Tanjiro stayed by the demons side and then Tanjiro just walked down there. It was slightly jarring which is why I really looked for whether they did a time skip or something but it seems like it was all the same night and he just insta-recovered from broken ribs and a potentially broken leg.

    • Irina says:

      I know…didn’t he say his leg was broken? very resilient this kid

      • Karandi says:

        They could have just not included that line of dialogue. Then we would have thought he was battered and bruised but tough when he got up in the end. Instead they kind of pushed credibility a little bit.

  3. As usual, I loved your choice of screen caps and captions!

  4. David Boone (moonhawk81) says:

    So, are you two–as viewers–satisfied that Nezuko has actually maintained free will? Your answer won’t change my own opinion about the wrongness of initially joining the demon slayers, but will make me feel somewhat better for Nezuko’s sake. . .

    • Irina says:

      Tajiro joined the Slayers entirely to protect Neuko right? You can argue that it was stupid but are you saying he shouldn’t have done whatever he thought was the best course of action to protect his sister? Because I thought you were arguing the opposite point? I may have got a little loss.
      My general view is that although I understand how selfish and shortsighted it i for Tanjro to put everyone else at risk for Nezuko’s sake. Especially as she seems to be suffering. I understand his decision and probably would have done the same in his place. I may have spaced out but I thought you agreed.

      • David Boone (moonhawk81) says:

        I am indeed arguing that he should protect his sister. I just can’t for the life of me understand how joining her avowed enemies was supposed to protect her. (Just how dim is this kid?) As for putting everyone else at risk for her benefit, that’s what he SHOULD be doing! Family is everything. . .

    • Towards the end, when Tanjiro was wavering between leaving Nezuko with Tamayo and taking her with him, _Nezuko_ took his hand and gave him what I thought was a very clear expression: Leave me behind and I _will_ hunt you down!

      Well, hunt him down to the point where she could rejoin him, because he’s family and all…

      The shorter answer is that yes, I saw evidence in this episode that she’s still not only making decisions, but taking the initiative.

  5. Dewbond says:

    Nezuko, you are reaching cuteness levels not possible! Not POSSIBLE!

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