When the classic setup meets flawless authorship, you get anime like Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba. The appeal of the anime comes from its characters, the setting, the animation style and music. Although Kimetsu no Yaiba is shounen i.e aimed at a very specific audience, the anime attempts to break away from restrictive tropes.
The swords wielded by Demon Slayers are called Nichiirin Swords. The Swords are capable of slaying demons due to the unique ore that is used in its manufacturing. This unique ore absorbs sunlight, which is a huge weakness for the demons. It was claimed in the anime that the blade takes on a colour when it’s drawn from the scabbard. These colours allow the swords to possess certain unique qualities. What is puzzling is that Tanjiro’s sword turns black. Black coloured swords are considered rare and very little is actually known about them.
This is thanks to the fact that most who have wielded black swords have died early without learning their full potential. They were understandable, considered a bad omen. As seen in the anime, the black sword was able to incorporate Nezuko’s Blood Demon technique – that of igniting her blood with flames.
Tanjiro usually practises the Breath of Water, yet further into the anime it’s revealed that his father practised the Dance of Fire God. Tanjiro’s sword’s capability of assimilating with Nezuko’s flames and his family’s history might provide an insight into whether Tanjiro can practice Breath of Flame/ Breath of Sun. Tanjiro’s Hanafuda earrings with the sun symbol were passed on to him. His heritage may provide some answers as to what the Dance of the Fire God is and whether it’s related to the Breath of the Sun.
The Dance of the Fire God helps with breathing, just like the other Breath Styles. This might be an important yet dying tradition of the Kamado family. One can theorize but we’ll have to wait to understand these concepts further.
The Plot of Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba
Demon Slayer is set in the Taisho Period of Japan. As the title implies, it’s a Japan where demons live amongst humans. The anime focuses on Tanjiro Kamado, a single earner for a family of 7, who gets caught up in a brewing war between the demons and the demon slayers. The murder of his family at the hands of a demon shifts his world and devastates him. The sole survivor of the incident, his sister Nezuko, is turned into a demon. Carrying the guilt of being unable to save his family, Tanjiro vows to save his sister Nezuko by turning her back to human again. Thus, Tanjiro and Nezuko step into the whirlwind of demons and demon slayer politics. In a world that alienates demons, Tanjiro and Nezuko’s demon-demon Slayer combo stands out.
The plot may not be extraordinary yet it manages to subvert expectations in subtle ways making it an engaging experience. The anime manages to ground itself with an in-depth portrayal of tragic situations. But it also segues to silly humour that would evoke quite a few laughs.
The arcs of the characters are what establishes a concrete emotional connection with the audience. The protagonist, Tanjiro, is a highly empathetic and optimistic kid who happens to be very raw with expressing his emotions. This factor allows him to go beyond the typical determined and optimistic shounen protagonist and builds more character that draws viewers further in. Tanjiro’s sister Nezuko, barely speaks in the entire anime yet her fiercely protective nature and her kindness don’t escape our attention. They started off quite shaky with Zenitsu and his whining, yet as episodes have gone by, they’ve managed to turn him into the central relief and an oddly interesting character. They’ve also begun to create a development arc for Inosuke, an eccentric and socially inept fighter.