Demon Slayer Anime Series Review

Demon Slayer Series Review
Nezuko and Tanjiro - Demon Slayer

He’s Protecting His Sister By Becoming a Demon Slayer:
Even If She’s Become a Demon

Kimetsu no Yaiba (Demon Slayer) has turned out to be a harder anime to review than I initially suspected. Largely this is because of the inconsistencies within the series however one of the other problems may just be that I’ve been watching anime for too long. I imagine if I’d seen this back when I first tried Bleach, Kimetsu no Yaiba may very well have been a gateway anime for me. Now I can’t help but see the flaws in it even as there are some moments that are dramatically on point.

The initial set up for Demon Slayer is very simple. Tanjiro lives with his family on the mountain and after a trip down to town he’s delayed and doesn’t return until the next day. When he gets there he discovers his family have been slaughtered and it is with relief he realises his sister Nezuko is still alive. At least until she tries to attack him. Nezuko has been turned into a demon and Tanjiro vows to find a way to turn her back.

Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 1

He does this through training and becoming a demon slayer.

Already there’s a small logical gap here. I get that Tanjiro needed to get stronger in order to protect his sister and ensure she didn’t attack anyone. He also needed to be able to get closer to demons in order to learn more about them. But becoming a slayer of the thing you are trying to protect seems a little bit counter-intuitive.

However, this works in Tanjiro’s favour as a character. He certainly does slay demons throughout the story but he isn’t a hot-blooded killing machine or the shouting protagonist who simply wants to be the strongest because they need to prove some kind of point. Tanjiro remains a compassionate human throughout and he has a genuine compassion even for those he is forced to cut down.

Honestly, if the story had stayed focused on Tanjiro’s quest to cure Nezuko and his learning about demons, with a tight focus on the siblings and building up the villainous demon that transformed her, this anime would have been absolutely perfect and an unmissable viewing experience.

Demon Slayer Episode 8 - Tanjiro and Nezuko

Unfortunately, it wants to play with the big shounen and so is endlessly expanding its cast and throwing in ‘humour’ at weird moments, going on quests and tangential arcs that have little to do with the main objective, and generally just bloating what should have been a simple and tight story line into something that feels overcooked.

My initial falling out of love with a series that had been relatively solid if a little predictable and too prone to repeating information was the introduction of Zenitsu closely followed by Inosuke. To put it simply these two characters add nothing but noise and poor attempts at humour. While they each do get moments where they are more tolerable and shine they are really unnecessary to the central plot and are a large part of the clutter that detracts from the viewing experience.

Zenitsu screams at literally anything. His shtick is that he’s a coward and afraid all the time but once he passes out he becomes incredibly strong having mastered one move perfectly. Now, Zenitsu does have a few redeeming moments where he acts valiantly but these do not offset the general irritation he creates in every other scene through his incessant wailing and generally unlikable personality.

Possibly he’s there for the laughs however he just isn’t funny. And if we were looking for Tanjiro, literally every Demon Slayer who thinks all demons are monsters who should be killed out of hand works well enough. We don’t need Zenitsu around.


Inosuke is similarly unnecessary and annoying. He’s so dense and his ongoing belligerence and general attitude make it very hard to want him around. Like Zenitsu, he has a rare moment or two where he does something and you feel like he’s turning a corner, but then we finish the battle and he’s right back to where he started and irritating enough to make you wish he suffocates inside that stupid boar’s head (okay, maybe that was just me).


What makes these characters even more insufferable is that they are clearly now part of Tanjiro’s party for reasons that make no sense whatsoever given they seemed to randomly hook up and prior to their appearance Tanjiro was just being lead along by his crow on his own. It would make perfect sense for them to arrive for a mission and then go their separate ways for a time to reunite later, but they are just hanging around like a bad smell.

Add in the other demon slayers who we meet toward the end of this first season who are all one note ‘zany’ personalities and honestly the supporting cast here need some work. Worse, Tanjiro and Nezuko’s screen time is reduced in many episodes to accommodate the ever expanding cast and so the central focus ends up diluted to the point where you nearly forget what started the whole story.

Visually Kimetsu no Yaiba is impressive. Despite the majority of sequences taking place at night due the demon’s nature, good use of lighting and colour ensure that it is always fairly easy to follow the action on screen and it is good, fluid action. The fight sequences against demons are great moments visually and are moments when the characters shine. A return to demon fighting was always welcome because the in-between moments where the characters were resting or recovering where almost always intolerably full of poor attempts at humour and generally padded.

However, even in the fight sequences, Kimetsu no Yaiba cannot help but overreach. After final blows had been landed the number of times the story screeched to a halt in order for a flash-back or reminiscence of the demon’s life would play, sometimes for a lengthy period, before we would move on again, was ridiculous. The killing of one bit character was spread across three episodes and honestly, given the character was in the process of dying I really didn’t care about their tragic circumstances. They either needed to establish that prior to fighting or just let it go.


Before wrapping this up I do have to give this anime props for the introduction of the villain, Muzan Kibutsuji. While he only had sparse appearances within the story each one gave us enough of a sense of dread and building up a villain worth fighting. There’s certainly more to learn about him but I enjoyed his screen time immensely during this first season.


I’m ultimately conflicted. This anime has some very strong points particularly with its animation and visuals and even the protagonist and his journey has been pretty solid, however with so many other issues this one ends up being a mixed bag. Some viewers really loved this anime and got a real buzz from it. Certainly it is worth trying. For me though, by the end of the season I was feeling a little fatigued and I’d certainly contemplated many ways the story could kill off some of the less necessary characters.

Basically, give it a try and it might work for you and might be one of your favourites, but even if not, there’s enough positives to make it a worthwhile enough viewing experience even if it is a flawed one.

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
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Karandi James

Have you missed a review from Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba?

Images from: Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba. Dir. H Sotozaki. Ufotable. 2019.

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Review Episode 10


Instant Protagonist Recovery

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 10 - Tanjiro
This is Demon Slayer’s version of victory.

Demon Slayer Episode 10

I just have to wonder how fast a broken leg and ribs can heal given Tanjiro goes from crawling on the ground unable to even grip his sword from exhaustion to walking down stairs and talking normally within the space of one demon dying. It really was the one thing that threw me right out of full immersion this episode but it left me with a bit of a sour taste in my mouth given the rest of the episode worked well enough at ending the fight.

Tanjiro was crawling on the ground just a minute ago and now, fine.

Again, we do have the extended flashback of the end of the last episode to start this episode. I’m just accepting that this anime is going to keep doing that and move on at this point. It is wasted screen time and will be worse when trying to binge watch given you will have literally just finished the last episode and be stuck rewatching, but whatever.

After that we swiftly move into the arrow demon having his last revenge against Tanjiro even as his body is disintegrating and it essentially becomes a battle of attrition. The question is whether or not Tanjiro can hold out and keep using his moves long enough or whether he will become exhausted and the demon’s attacks will smash him to pieces before the demon is gone.

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba - Demon head

It is one of those overly long and flashy fight sequences you get in shounen where you already know the outcome but the animation looks interesting enough and they are showing off lots of the sword forms so we’ll just kind of go with it.

The second demon, engages in a ball fight with Nezuko which also seems fairly pointless but is again fun enough to watch, before Tamayo casts one of her spells. Now the spell itself is pretty tame but it does loosen the demon’s lips enough that she actually says Kibutsuji’s name, at which point she freaks out and Tamayo points out that it is going to activate a curse. The more we learn about Kibutsuji the nastier he seems.

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba - Nezuko pats Yushiro

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This sequence does teach us a few things though. Firstly, the two demons weren’t part of the 12 whatevers, so the question becomes whether they were lying or whether they were deceived. We also learn that Kibutsuji has taken some fairly solid measures to protect himself against the demons he creates, which only makes sense really.

They almost made me feel sorry for the demon here.

This episode works well enough but essentially it is just wrapping up this encounter before sending Tanjiro on his way to the next one and I guess we’ll find out more about the cowardly demon slayer next week given Tanjiro is about to run into him.

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

Have you missed a review from Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba?

Images from: Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba. Dir. H Sotozaki. Ufotable. 2019.

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Review Episode 8


Not All Demons Are Created Equal


Episode 8

After the dramatic conclusion to the last episode this episode hit the brakes pretty hard but that actually works out well. Rather than forcing a confrontation between Kibutsuji and Tanjiro 8 episodes in Tanjiro is held up holding down the newly turned demon and Kibutsuji walks away with his family. However, both know that isn’t the end of things.

I do find his family man act to be more chilling than when he is actually being a vicious demon and killing people.

The majority of the rest of the episode is Tanjiro collecting Nezuko from the udon shop and then sitting down for a talk with a demon who is apparently also a doctor and discussing the possibility of finding a cure provided Tanjiro is willing to help her collect demon blood. That could have been pretty dull except for the fact that prior to this we saw Kibutsuji losing his cool and slaughtering three humans who just happened to be walking along in an alley before he sends two demons after Tanjiro.


Also, the conversation was kept fairly interesting because of Nezuko. And no, she didn’t join in the conversation at all but throughout it she was lying on her back and kicking her legs in the air or holding tightly to Tanjiro’s hand. She was so adorable it was almost easy to forget she’s a demon who may have been brainwashed.

Cutest demon ever.

There were a few questions that I ended up with though. For instance, how does the demon doctor know that Nezuko slept for two years? It wasn’t really raised in the conversation and she didn’t indicate that she had any other information source so her pointing out Nezuko’s unique traits as a demon didn’t make a lot of sense prior to having a chance to actually examine her.

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That one might just end up being a hole in the story but the other question I had was about Kibutsuji’s flashback to an exorcist wearing the same earrings as Tanjiro. We hadn’t been given any indication prior that his earrings were anything significant but it now seems like maybe there’s some history. In which case, wouldn’t Tanjiro have known more about demons? Or maybe there’s a bunch of stuff we’re missing at the moment.

Oh yes, these two.

Anyway, the episode ends again on a cliff-hanger which is pretty standard for Demon Slayer at this point and fairly standard for shounen in general so I guess we’ll see what happens next week with the demons who’ve shown up to attack. Then again, if the doctor lady wants demon blood it looks like two donors have literally just dropped in to her house.

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

Have you missed a review from Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba?

Images from: Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba. Dir. H Sotozaki. Ufotable. 2019.