What an insane ride this one was.
I’d heard a lot about Chainsaw Man over the last few months.
How insane and well written it is, how it’s going to get an adaptation by Studio Mappa, and, most recently, how we can expect a trailer in June.
With this final piece of news, I gave in and read the manga, discovering one hell of a story.
Written and illustrated by Tatsuki Fujimoto, Chainsaw Man is set in a world where humans often find themselves being attacked by Devils, so a group of Devil Hunters has been formed to combat them.
Our main character is Denji, a young man who hunts Devils with his own pet Devil, Pochita, to pay off his dead father’s debt to the Yakuza, which has passed onto him.
However, after a dark turn of events sees Denji dismembered and thrown into a dumpster, Pochita makes a contract with Denji to give him his heart, if he shows him his dreams.
And so, Denji becomes Chainsaw Man, a human with the capacity to transform into a Devil who has a chainsaw head and arms to dismember any Devils that get in the way of his goals.
What are these goals?
Well, they’re simple things, like eating good food, having a nice place to sleep, and touching some boobs.
It’s honestly funny how simple Denji’s motivations are compared to the other characters.
For example, we have Aki, a character whose tragic backstory would make you think he is being set up to be the main character.
But no, instead we have Denji, whose main motivation for trying to kill what is supposedly the most dangerous Devil of all being that he will get one wish from the girl he likes, Makima.
It’s so absurd, yet it somehow works.
Speaking of characters like Makima and Aki, though, both of them are great, with so many fantastic twists and turns to their arcs.
It’s not just them who are fun characters because there are many others.
Power brings constant laughs to the table and the growing found family dynamic between her, Denji and Aki is beautifully handled.
Kobeni’s suffering is weaponized into being some of the funniest stuff in the entire story, with me laughing my head off, while also feeling sorry for her.
Then there’s the awesome devil hunter Kishibe, who may just be my favourite of the bunch, due to his personality and the way he handles his trauma.
I actually don’t think there’s a single character among the main cast who is a weak link.
This makes it even harder to sit through when Fujimoto inevitably breaks our hearts with another character’s gruesome fate.
Seriously, Fujimoto should go into business with Hajime Isayama, building an onsen where the water comes from their fans’ tears.
I’m pretty sure a good portion of those tears would come from me too because some of the things that happen got me really emotional.
Chainsaw Man made me go from laughing so hard my sides were hurting, to tearing up, to being left in stunned silence on multiple occasions.
All of this emotion is brought across by Fujimoto’s excellent drawing skills.
The guy is as skilled at illustrating as he is at making us laugh and feel depressed.
This culminates in a fitting ending for this part of the story, which has me not only incredibly excited for Mappa’s adaptation but also for Part Two of the manga, whenever that releases.
Chainsaw Man is one hell of a manga that will leave you clutching your sides with laughter, shedding a few tears, and in stunned silence.
Hopefully Mappa can do this great story justice.