Chainsaw Man Episode Twelve, Katana vs Chainsaw Review: The Contest to End All Contests.

Episode Twelve, “Katana vs Chainsaw” is the final episode of the Chainsaw Man adaptation’s first season, and what a fantastic point to end it on.
Directed by the series’ overall director Ryū Nakayama, “Katana vs Chainsaw” picks up with the fight between Aki and the Ghost Devil the previous episode ended on.
Aki is currently being strangled by the Ghost Devil and passes out, only to hallucinate a prior exchange with Himeno, where she offered him a cigarette, only to take it back when she learned he was underage, promising to hold onto it for him.
When Aki opens his eyes, the Ghost Devil is holding out a cigarette with “EASY REVENGE” written on it.
Some part of Himeno seems to have survived inside the Ghost Devil and, remembering what she told him about the Ghost Devil only being able to see through fear, Aki uses this to climb the Devil and decaptitate it, leaving only Sawatari to deal with.
Before Sawatari can call on the Snake Devil, however; Kobeni sneaks up behind her and puts a knife under her throat.
Aki asks why she stayed with Public Saftey, causing Kobeni to humorously respond that it was because their bonuses are coming up.
While this is happening, Denji and Power are riding up in an elevator to confront Katana Man, only to stop on a floor full of zombies.
Rather than take the elevator up away from them, Power instead launches herself into the zombies, crying out for Denji to watch her slaughter them.
Instead, Denji takes the elevator up, while an oblivious Power continues to obliterate the zombies
Eventually, Denji reaches Katana Man, who explains that he is prepared to give up so long as Denji allows himself to be killed by him.
Denji refuses and Katana Man attempts to manipulate him, again bringing up Denji not feeling empathy because he apparently lacks a human heart.
Denji may not be smart but he is clever enough to see through this and he cheerfully refuses again, leading to the final fight between him and Katana Man.
The two crash out of the building, eventually taking the fight atop a train with some truly excellent CGI.
They eventually crash inside the train, with Katana Man using his speed ability to cut both of Denji’s arms off before demanding he apologise for his grandfathr’s death.
This was Katana Man’s mistake, however, because Denji uses this to lure him into another attack, drawing his attention to his head while Denji uses a chainsaw in his foot to cut Katana Man in half.
“Didn’t the geezer teach you that beasts shouldn’t trust anything a hunter says?” Denji shouts, showing exactly what he learned from Kishibe and how much his training paid off.
When Katana Man regenerates, Deni ties him up to the train tracks.
However, much like Katana Man wanted satisfaction by killing Deni to avenge his grandfather, Denji too wants satisfaction for Himeno’s death so he decides to hold the contest to end all contest.
Aki then arrives and Denji gives the rules of the contest.
He and Aki will kick Katana Man in the nuts until the police show up and whoever gets the loudest scream wins his family jewels.
Aki is reluctant, until he again looks at the “EASY REVENGE!” cigarette and decides to compete.
Watching Deni and Aki kick Katana Man in the nuts over and over again to wholesome music was absolutley hilarious.
I like to think that Aki got the loudest scream as Katana Man’s screams serve as a reqiuem for Himeno.
The credits then begin to roll, with Makima reporting on the events of the raid and what they learned, primarily that Sawatari’s deal with the Gun Devil was to obtain Denji’s heart.
However, before they could find out why, Sawatari was killed by the Snake Devil in an apparent suicide part of her contract with the Gun Devil.
Makima then tells her superior that the Gun Devil parts they recovered have begun to move towards the main body, although the ED, “Fight Song” by Eve, begins before we can learn which direction it has started to move.
The ED shows Denji, Power and Aki going about their daily life after the Katana Man raid and it was a good final ED to end on.
Pretty much all of the ED’s are high quality, with them having great music and visuals, showing just how much care went into this anime.
After the ED, we get another anime original scene of Aki, as we see him go outside and smoke the “EASY REVENGE!” cigarette in what is probably his final goodbye to Himeno.
As this is happening, Denji is having a nightmare about the mysterious door, just like he did in Episode One, tying the opening of Season One up with its ending.
Just as Denji approaches the door, he hears Pochita on the other side, ordering Denji not to open it.
The episode then ends with a teaser, as an unseen female character walks through an alleywar towards a cafe, stating, “Tell me Denji, between the country mouse and the city mouse, which would you rather be?”
To anime only watchers, this tease will not mean much but, as a manga reader, it makes me incredibly excited for whatever follows, whether that be a Chainsaw Man Season Two or a movie to cover the next arc.
Overall, “Katana vs Chainsaw” was a fantastic final episode, delivering incredibly well animated fight and nut kicking scenes, alongside excellent music.
It is absolutley apparent that the people who made this anime love Chainsaw Man, as this is easily one of the best adaptations of a manga out there.
Hats off to you and your team Mappa.
I cannot wait to see what comes next for the Chainsaw Man anime.


Manga Spoilers:

As a manga reader, it was exciting to see Reze get teased at the end of the episode.
She is one of the best antagonists in Part One and brings up one of the big themes of the story, which is the whole country mouse vs city mouse argument.
I am curious to see if the Bomb Girl Arc that centers on her will be adapted as a movie or in a Season Two.
After all, the Bomb Girl Arc is short enough to be contained in a movie.
Although, it might be better for the pacing of the series overall for it to be kept for a Season Two.
Season Two could be the Bomb Girl and International Assassins Arc, and then Season Three could be the Gun Devil Arc and the Control Devil Arc, before moving onto Part Two.
Whichever it turns out to be, though, either a movie or Season Two, I will eagerly anticipate the return of the  Chainsaw Man anime because of how amazing this adaptation was.

Chainsaw Man Episode Eleven, Mission Start Review: The Future Rules!

Episode Eleven of Chainsaw Man, “Mission Start” picks up from the cliffhanger of Aki going in to make a contract with the Future Devil.
The cliffhanger made the Future Devil out to be an incredibly scary devil so there is a lot of comedic catharsis to see it is a hip Devil who constantly screams “The future rules!”
Directed by Masato Nakazono and Takeshi Satō the episode opening follows this comedic reveal, and then continues to detail Aki’s coversation with the Future Devil, who demands Aki say “The future rules” as well.
Instead, Aki tells the Future Devil he has come to make a contract, deflating the Future Devil’s excitement.
In all honesty, though, it was probably not a smart idea for Aki to refuse to play along with the Future Devil after learning it has such a hefty price for its contracts.
If it were me, I would have been screaming “The future rules!” right along with the Devil.
Aki’s lucky that the Future Devil decided the terms of his contract by reading his future, and his terms are quite generous at that.
The Future Devil will allow Aki to see a few seconds into the future when fighting, and, in return, Aki will allow it to live inside his right eye.
Aki is understandablly suspicious of the generous contract but the Future Devil explains that it saw Aki’s death will be the “f***ing worst,” and it wants a front row seat.
There was originally a mistranslation of this line, as the Future Devil said Aki’s death would “f***ing rule” so it is good that they changed it to be closer to the original meaning.
As for Aki himself, he is not bothered by the Future Devil’s prophecy, instead demanding it get in his eye to complete the contract.
Meanwhile, Kishibe has finished killing Denji and Power for what is probably the hundreth times by now.
Only, this time, they appear to have landed a blow on him, as Kishibe wipes away the blood from a cut on his cheek.
Impressed with their efforts, he decides to only train them once a week, before telling them that tomorrow they are going after Sawatari and Katana Man.
However, he does warn Denji and Power that if the mission goes bad then he will have to kill the both of them.
Unperturbed by this, Denji explains that if he fights Kishibe then he will spare him because his training increased his chances of hooking up with Makima.
Speak of the devil, the next scene is between Makima and Kishibe, who meet up for drinks.
Makima thanks Kishibe for training Denji and Power but Kishibe says he is sick of them already because he has come to care about them, and every time someone he trains and then cares about dies he ends up drinking more.
Kishibe then accuses Makima of knowing the attack against the Special Divisions would happen and not doing anything to stop it.
However, he says he will let such actions slide as long as her actions benefit humanity.
Makima then goes on a speech about how her actions will achieve just that, only for Kishibe to call her a liar, to which Makima’s small smile returns.
This is one of my favourite Kishibe scenes because it tells us plenty about his character.
His incessant drinking is caused by the guilt he feels for lost pupils, yet, despite this guilt, he is willing to let them die so long as it benefits humanity as a whole.
He is also one of the few to actually call Makima out on her manipulative actions.
The next morning, we see what the Yakuza is up to, with Katana Man and Sawatari preparing for Division Four’s attack.
The boss of the Yakuza has been moved but Katana Man and Sawatari plan to stay, and use their zombie army left over from Katana Man’s grandfather’s contract with the Zombie Devil to deal with Division Four.
At the same time, Aki is returning with Tendo and Kurose, the later of whom berates him for his unrealistic mission to kill the Gun Devil.
Aki counters this by stating that he knows it is unrealistic but he could not go on without that mission, telling Kurose he is free to laugh at him if he loses and dies against the Gun Devil.
This seems to earn Kurose’s respect, as he tells Aki he is routing for him, delivering the same advice he was given, “Everyone who works in the Special Division is crazy, so watch yourself.”
He and Tendo then leave, presumably for Kyoto.
As for Makima, she is meeting with the yakuza boss that was spoken of earlier, along with his men.
The boss explains that it was Sawatari who roped Katana Man and the others into dealing with the Gun Devil and is cooperative until Makima requests the names of those contracted with the Gun Devil in other crime families.
This causes the boss to go on a familiar rant about “necessary evils,” which Katana Man spoke of in his introduction in refrence to his grandfather.
The boss compares himself to a Devil Hunter, protecting Japan from other Mafia families, like how the Devil Hunters protect people from the Devils.
Makima, however, rightly points out that this is just to justify the boss’ own evil actions.
She goes on to state her belief that the only true necessary evil is one where “the nation itself is holding the lesh and maintaining control.”
This is why she is so horrifying calm when she presents the yakuza boss and his underlings with the eyes of their loved ones, using their return as blackmail to get what she wants.
While this exchange is happening, Division Four finally begins their raid on Katana Man and Sawatari’s base of operations.
Outside, Kishibe debriefs the police, explaining they need to be on the lookout, not for escaping yakuza but escaping fiends and Devils who work for Division Four, just in case they get loose.
We then get a showcase of these creatures in an action sequence, meeting the Shark Fiend (Natsuki Hanae), the Violence Fiend (Yuya Uchida) , the Spider Devil (Saori Goto) and the Angel Devil (Maaya Uchida), all of whom take on the zombies in well directed and bloody action.
Denji, Aki and Power fight alongside them, resulting in Aki and the Angel Devil interacting, where Aki is brave enough to get closer to the Angel Devil, despite the fact that physical contact will drain his already short life span, and the Angel Devil then saves Aki’s life from gunfire.
Aki decides to leave the zombies to the fiends, while he, Denji and Power split up to search for Sawatari and Katana Man.
While searching, Aki is able to incapcitate one yakuza member, probably thanks to his new future sight power, but quickly finds himself overwhelmed, only for Makima’s help to come in key again, as the men all slump to the floor dead with bloody noses, just as the yakuza who threatened Makima earlier did.
Makima emerges from the yakuza boss’ base, the fate of the boss and his underlings unknown.
We then get the final scene of the episode, as Aki locates Sawatari, only for her to have the Snake Devil spit out the Ghost Devil, which Aki is forced to fight using his future sight in more extremely well animated action.
There are too many limbs for Aki to keep track of, however, and he eventually ends up getting caught, with Sawatari ordering the Ghost Devil to strangle him to death.
The episode then ends with things looking pretty grim for Aki, closing off with the ED “Violence” by Queen Bee.
All in all, “Mission Start” is another great Chainsaw Man episode.
Going into it, I was actually wondering if it would adapt enough content so the next episode could end with finishing the Katana Man Arc.
This concern was unfounded since the next episode did end with the conclusion of that arc, along with some hints for future arcs, which I am excited for.

Manga Spoilers:
While I was glad to see that the mistranslation of Aki’s death got cleared up, I still think the manga translation of Aki dying “in the worst possible way” is better.
It later ties in with the Future Devil saying Aki died “in the worst possible way… for the chainsaw boy.”
Although this line could still be made to work.
Maybe the Future Devil will say, “Your death was the f***ing worst… for the chainsaw boy.”
Speaking of allusions to the future, though, the scene where the yakuza boss says that the Gun Devil required money for a contract is interesting, considering that it is later revealed that the Gun Devil has already been defeated and parts of its are held by different countries.
So, rather than the Gun Devil requring money for the contract, its whatever shady government organization which required money to sell the guns through Sawatari.
The last spoiler detail I would like to talk about is Aki’s character development, or rather the setup for it.
He tells Kurose in this episode that without his unrealisitic desire for revenge against the Gun Devil, he would have nothing.
This makes Aki’s character arc one of the best in the story, given where he ends up as, by his conclusion, he is willing to throw away his mission to kill the Gun Devil entirely so he can keep Denji and Power safe.

Chainsaw Man Episode Nine, From Kyoto Review: POP Goes the Yakuza!

After the insansity of Chainsaw Man truly began last episode, Episode Nine, “From Kyoto” continues this, with many moments I was excited to see from the manga being adapted excellently.
Directed by Takahiro Kaneko, “From Kyoto” begins by briefly recaping the previous episode through showing Himeno’s death, as she gives all of her strength to the Ghost Devil in the hopes of beating the mysterious girl, named Sawatari, and Katana Man.
As we know from “Gunfire”, this unfortunately fails as Sawatari uses the Snake Devil to eat the Ghost and Himeno vanishes entirely.
It seems like the Yakuza have won this fight until, with the last of its strength, the Ghost Devil pulls Denji’s ripcord, causing him to heal and transform into his Chainsaw form.
As he and Katana Man prepare face off, we hear “Hawatari 2 Oku-senchi” begin to play for the third time in this show.
Once again, the makers of the anime seem to really like this song and I, for one, cannot blame them.
It really is a banger and it suits the build up to Denji’s fight with Katana Man well.
We see the fight after the opening, brief as it is, and it is as exceptionally animated as the action in the previous episode.
Sawatari calls for backup and they eventually arrive but they only prove to be a hinderance as Denji takes one of the men hostage pretty easily.
The hinderance is a small one, however, because Katana Man is absolutley not concerned about killing his own men as he uses the same attack he used to defeat Aki, slicing both Denj and his own subordinate in half.
Katana Man then prepares to take Denji’s body to their van as his own hyrid form melts, before proclaiming that Devil Hunters are no match for guns.
Following this statement, we get a brief montage proving him right, as we see Arai and various other Devil Hunters who drank with Denji the night before have been killed.
Makima seems to be among them, until her assassins look back at her body, only to see she has somehow resurrected herself, in an exceptionally creepy shot.
At the train station where Makima was heading, two other Devil Hunters, Kurose (Kengo Kawanishi) and Tendo (Hitomi Ueda), are waiting for her arrival when they hear about the attacks on the Devil Hunter divisions.
They believe Makima is dead, until she steps off the arriving train covered in blood.
She lies, stating that she was not hit and the blood she is covered in is not her own.
That last detail is probably partially true because we then cut to an overhead shot looking down inside the train, where Makima’s would-be assassins have all been brutally killed with large holes seeming to have been blown through their stomachs.
Instead of heading to Tokyo, Makima instead orders Kurose and Tendo to gather 30 convicts with life sentences or worse and then take them to a highly elevated temple.
We then get an anime only scene of Makima preparing for her gruesome plan, as she redresses herself, while the convicts are brought to the temple, having what they do not know will be their final meal on the way.
The scene then cuts to back with Katana Man and Sawatari, as they and their Yaukza subordinates are loading Denji into their van, only for the subodrinates to start exploding in a bloody game of Pop Goes the Yakuza!
We then see exactly how Makima is making this happen.
Atop the temple, she has the prisoners, and Tendo and Kurose blindfolded.
This is so Tendo and Kurose cannot see what Devil she is contracted with and probably so the prisoners will not panic when they start dying.
Makima goes from prisoner to prisoner, ordering them to say the full name of each Yakuza member.
She then squishes her hands togethor, squishing the Yaukza and also killing the prisoner in the process.
This horrible ability is perfectly portrayed from the manga, displaying just how gruesome all of this is, with one shot of a gun laying in a puddle of blood being particuarly striking.
Just as unnerving is Makima’s demeanor after doing all of this, as she calmly declares that this is all she can do from here.
For whatever reason, Makima did not harm Katana Man or Sawatari, and they prepare to load Denji into their van, only to stop when they see an unexpected person approaching: Kobeni.
We then get the payoff to Himeno saying how skilled she was in the Eternity Devil Arc.
Sawatari sends the Snake Devil to kill her but Kobeni easily jumps over it and runs along the tail, jumping to slice off Katana Man’s hand, catch his gun in midair, and then shoot him with it without even looking.
She then uses Denji as a shield when Sawatari attempts to shoot her, forcing Sawatari to retreat with Katana Man.
Kobeni does all of this with her perpetually depressed expression, which is understandable given the trauma she just experienced.
In a flashback, it is revealed that when the old lady fired at Kobeni and Arai, Arai sacrificed himself for her, giving Kobeni enough time to get behind the old lady and make her shoot herself.
This unfortunately creates a lot of survivors guilt for Kobeni as, after apologising to Denji for trying to kill him earlier, she has a breakdown, laughing and crying over how she is apologising for attempted murder and  how Arai died for her.
She declares that she will tell Himeno she quits the next time she sees her, doubling the tragedy because we already know Himeno is dead.
I wonder if anime only viewers will have warmed up to Kobeni now that she has had her big moment?
Many of them hated her because of her actions in the Eternity Devil Arc.
I did too when I read the manga but my negative opinion of her turned around after she saved Denji and I wonder if this is the same for anime only viewers?
The final scene of the episode then sees Makima meeting with Madoka, the sole survivor among the newly introduced Devil Hunters who went out with Denji and the others the night before.
Madoka announces that the divisions are being merged because of the assassinations, leaving Makima in charge.
He then quits his job because he believes its leave the Devil Hunting profession or die, before all but accusing Makima of knowing this whole thing was going to happen.
Makima, however, neither confirms nor denies this, stating she cannot share such information with civilians.
As she leaves with Kurose and Tendo, the two are obviously creeped out by Makima as well now.
They timidly try to get away from her by saying they are only staying in Tokyo briefly so they can train people.
Makima states that this is a shame because, “The dining in Tokyo is to die for,” bringing an end to the episode.
Way to not seem creepy, Makima.
After the episode ends, we get our ninth ED “Deep Down” by Aimer, which is right up there with “Hawatari 2 Oku-senchi” and “First Death” in terms of quality.
Overall, “From Kyoto” is probably my favourite episode of Chainsaw Man so far.
It perfectly adapts great moments like Kobeni rescuing Denji, Makima’s revival, and then her brutal game of Pop Goes the Yakuza!


Manga Spoilers:
One addition to the anime that I liked was the use of crows when the Yakuza began exploding.
We know from the manga that Makima can control various animals, like rats and crows.
The crows flying around when the Yakuza start popping show that Makima is using them to confirm that she is hitting her targets.
Either that or the crows play some role in the popping.
As for Makima leaving Katana Man and Sawatari alive, I am still curious about her reason for doing so.
Maybe it was so she could obtain their power later, as we see her doing so in the final couple of arcs in Part One.

Chainsaw Man Episode Eight, Gunfire Review: Let the Insanity Begin.

Directed by Shōta Goshozono and Takeshi Satō, Episode Eight of Chainsaw Man, “Gunfire” begins with an anime orginal moment that is very reminiscant of the scene where we followed Aki on his morning routine in Episode Four.
Just like that scene, “Gunfire” begins with us seeing Himeno’s nightly routine, before she makes a sexual advance on Denji.
The shots of her preparing a shower for herself and then later grabbing a beer are all just as well animated.
The episode then picks up from the last one, with Himeno propositioning Denji.
Again, the shots are well animated here, although with one exception.
There is a bird’s eye view shot looking down on the both of them which did look quite off to me.
However, this shot only lasts about five seconds or so, so it’s fine.
For a little while, it looks like Denji is actually going to sleep with Himeno, until she finds a chupa chup in his pocket.
This was given to Denji by Makima in the form of an indirect kiss, making Denji realize that he wants his first time to be with Makima, so he refuses to sleep with Himeno, instead taking the floor while Himeno passes out drunk on the bed.
The next morning, she and Denji have breakfast togethor.
Not remembering what happened last night, Himeno asks Denji if they had sex and is relieved to learn that they did not stating, “They toss you in jail for doing that kind of thing with minors.”
Yeah, not gonna lie, the whole Himeno making moves on Denji while she’s drunk is pretty creepy.
At least with Makima it was treated more sinister, since she was clearly manipulating him.
With Himeno its treated more like a joke.
This unintentionally creepy moment is thankfully moved on from quickly, as Himeno now offers to form an alliance with Denji.
He will help her get togethor with Aki, and Himeno, in turn, will help Denji get togethor with Makima.
Well, someone had better tell the assassins planning Makima’s murder to hold off then… oh, wait.
As a manga reader, it was pretty funny to watch the reaction of anime only viewers when Makima gets unexpectedly assassinated on a train to Kyoto.
Now they have a better idea of Chainsaw Man’s crazy pacing.
Often times, scenes will seem like slow build up, only to flip on a dime to absolute insanity.
In other stories this eratic pacing would be a problem but Tatsuki Fujimoto is such a good writer that he makes it work and the adaptation follows through on this.
After Makima is killed, the episode then shows that her assassination was not a one off, as other attempts are made on the lives of Devil Hunters across Tokyo.
Among the potential victims are Kobeni and Arai, who are unexpectedly targeted by an old lady but we do not see if they make it or not.
We do, however, see what happens to Denji, Himeno, Aki and Power, when they meet togethor for food.
They are confronted by a mysterious man, who just randomly inserts himself into their conversation, going on about his murderous yakuza grandpa.
The pieces slowly start coming togethor until the man pulls out a picture of him with his grandfather and we that it was the yakuza boss who had pretty much enslaved Denji in the first episode, until he was turned into a zombie by the Zombie Devil and then finished off by Denji.
Now supposedly working for the Gun Devil and out for revenge, the man takes out a gun and fires at the group, hitting Denji, Himeno and Aki.
Only Power manages to dodge and punch the man back, more than earning her noble prize.
Power’s attack gives Aki enough time to unleash the Fox Devil, which eats the man, only for him to reveal himself to be a hybrid devil like Denji, named Katana Man (Daiko Hamano).
With Denji out of comission and Himeno mortally wounded, Aki is left with no choice but to use the sword which drains some of his life to defeat Katana Man.
What follows is a fantastic fight sequence, as Aki stabs Katana Man with his nail blade three times, resulting in the Curse Devil intervening and supposedly killing him.
As Aki prepares to have Himeno taken to a hostpital, he is shocked to realize Katana Man used a gun, which should be impossible to get.
However, while Aki is talking about this, there is a piece of rubble in the way of his mouth, so we cannot see his lips move.
Rather than a stylistic choice, this came off to me as if they did not have the budget or time to animate his mouth moving after the fight scene so put this in the way until they could fix it later.
I may be wrong about this though but, if I’m not, then I do hope it is changed later because it is a little weird.
This is a minor moment though and it is easily forgotten when an unknown woman (Yō Taichi)shows up to help Katana Man to his feet, since he can revive just like Denji.
The mysterious girl orders Katana Man to kill Aki, which he certainly makes a good attempt at with an attack that causes quite the jump scare with the delayed blood splatter from Aki.
The girl then tells Katana to finish Aki off.
Desperate to save him, and with no other option, Himeno makes a final contract with the Ghost Devil.
She will give the Devil all of herself in exchange for using its full power.
The Ghost Devil’s true form then appears and Himeno directs it to attack Katana Man, all the while thinking about how Aki still cries for Devil Hunters who die.
Himeno’s last words to Aki are that she wants him to live so he can cry for her.
The Ghost Devil is then eaten by the mysterious girl’s Snake Devil and we see that Himeno has completley vanished, only her clothes remaining.
And so “Gunfire” comes to an end with Himeno’s sacrifice.
We then get the ED, “First Death” by TK.
Given TK’s reputation, like with his brilliant Tokyo Ghoul OP, I knew this was going to be a fantastic ED and he did not disappoint.
“Gunfire” was yet another fantastic Chainsaw Man episode.
Katana Man and the yakuza’s ambush was handled excellently and, aside from a few weird animation moments, I would not have had it any other way.


Manga Spoilers:

If I was excited for anime only viewers’ reactions to this episode then I am doubly so for the next one.
I cannot wait to see how they will react to Makima’s revival, her supernatural attack on the yakuza and Kobeni rescuing Denji.
Will they think Makima is the Gun Devil because of this, like I did, and will this be the start of them warming up to Kobeni, like it was for me?
Only time will tell.
Either way, the next episode will be another action packed one that I am very excited to see.

Chainsaw Man Episode Seven, The Taste of a Kiss Review: Worst. First Kiss. Ever.

After Episode Six, I was greatly anticipating Episode Seven of Chainsaw Man, “The Taste of a Kiss.”
Oh, it was not because I was excited to see the end of the fight between Denji and the Eternity Devil, although I was looking forward to seeing that.
No, what I was most excited about was finally seeing Himeno vomit in Denji’s mouth while kissing him… wow, that’s a sentence I never expected to be writing down.
Directed by Masato Nakazono, “The Taste of a Kiss” delivers this hilarious yet incredibly disgusting moment well, showing anime only Chainsaw Man viewers just what type of humor they can expect in this anime.
The episode begins where the previous one ended, with Denji jumping into the Eternity Devil’s mouth.
Kobeni thinks it is finally over, only for Denji to bust through with his chainsaws and begin attacking the Devil, accompanied by the music of the third Ending, “Hawatari 2 Oku-senchi” by Maximum the Hormone.
It seems like the makers of this episode realized how good of a song it was so decided to play it when Denji was decimating the Eternity Devil.
This decimation does not last long, however, because, as Power points out, Denji is losing too much blood so soon his chainsaws will retract.
We see that this is very much the case after the OP, as Denji is caught in a bloody hold by the Eternity Devil and the chainsaws in his arms do end up retracting.
However, Denji is able to bring the chainsaws back and free himself after drinking the Eternity Devil’s blood, before declaring that its scream makes its horrible blood taste like strawberry jam.
He then breaks off into a fit of maniacle laughter, sounding like a lunatic, which naturally cuts into Himeno’s following flashback of her master, Kishibe, saying that the Devil Hunters Devils fear the most are the ones with a few screws loose.
The two are at the Devil Hunter graveyard visiting the graves of Himeno’s partners, while Kishibe rants and drinks.
He says that Himeno’s partners were afraid, which made the Devils stronger, but there is no telling what a crazy person thinks, which is why the Devils fear them.
Himeno knows this does not match with her and Aki, so she is afraid for her partner’s life as he pursues the Gun Devil.
This leads to her suggesting that they take a safer job in the private sector but Aki turns her down, still determined in his mission of revenge.
Not wanting to lose Aki, Himeno decides to stay with him, but believes that if Aki manages to track down the Gun Devil then he will die because he is normal like everyone else.
We then see who exactly is not normal, as the flashback ends and we see Denji fall, supposedly defeated by the Eternity Devil, only to be revived by Himeno’s Ghost Devil, which pulls his ripcord.
Denji then has a erueka moment, realizing all he has to do is keep drinking the Eternity Devil’s blood and he can keep fighting, declaring that he has created a “perpetual motion machine.”
With this creation, he dubs the nobel prize to be his, beating Power’s idea outright.
Denji’s insane declaration causes Himeno to realize just how crazy he is, fitting into Kishibe’s explanation of a great Devil Hunter perfectly, and she beleives that Denji may actually have what it takes to eventually kill the Gun Devil.
Three days of gore later, Denji finally manages to defeat the Eternity Devil who, just as planned, offers its heart up to be destroyed by Denji, since it is in too much pain to resist anymore.
Denji destroys the heart, killing the Eternity Devil, freeing everyone from the eighth floor, and retrieving a piece of the Gun Devil’s flesh.
Some time later, Himeno suggests to Aki that they go out for drinks with everyone, partially to convince Kobeni and Arai to stay with Public Saftey, since they are thinking about leaving due to the trauma of what happened and their guilt over trying to kill Denji.
A comedic moment follows, when Aki points out that Himeno tried to kill Denji too and Himeno declares that kids these days are “so sensitive.”
Aki insists that the party will need to be this week so they can invite Makima, since she is going on a buisness trip to Kyoto soon.
This causes Himeno to bring up how suspicious it is that the Eternity Devil wanted Denji’s heart, wondering if Makima knows why.
Himeno sees the party as the perfect oppotunity to get Makima drunk so they can convince her to tell them the truth.
The scene then cuts to this party, where various humorous moments occur, such as Denji instantly forgiving a drunk Himeno for the promise of a kiss, Power boastfully exagerrating her intellgience, and Makima outdrinking everyone.
The second funniest moment of the scene is when Makima questions Denji about the kiss Himeno promised and he denies it, only to loudly confirm it when Himeno drunkily questions if the kiss is no longer happening.
It is this kiss that is the funniest moment of the scene and the entire episode.
Although, as I said, it is also its most disgusting.
As Himeno makes out with Denji, in quite a bit of animated detail by the way, Denji tastes something odd in his mouth.
At first, he thinks it is her tounge, only to realize, much to his horror, that its her vomit.
This moment becomes even more disgusting when Denji swallows the vomit because his hard life has taught him to swallow anything of nutrional value.
The disgusting nature of this infamous joke aside, I do find it kind of funny how the vomit was censored, given that the episode had absolutley no problem depciting Denji brutally tearing apart the Eternity Devil at the beginning.
As for Denji, he understandably has to do some puking of his own after his odreal, with Arai unexpectedly helping him.
Afterwards, the party ends and Denji is dragged away by a still wasted Himeno.
It would seem that the alcahol in Himeno’s vomit made Denji blackout drunk as well so he is pretty disorientated when he wakes up in Himeno’s apartment.
Himeno then stumbles into the bedroom in another moment that is exceptionally animated, for just being a character walking.
She then kisses Denji and offers to have sex with him, ending the episode and making this the second cliffhanger where a character offers Denji a sexual favour.
Overall, “The Taste of a Kiss” is another solid episode for the Chainsaw Man adaptation.
Its opening fight with the Eternity Devil is intense, the drinking scene has plenty of funny moments, and the puke scene is just as disgustingly hilarious as I remember it being in the manga, actually making me feel sick watching it.
“The Taste of a Kiss” shows anime only viewers just what kind of humor to expect going forward.
As for the next episode, well, that one shows the anime only viewers just what to expect for the story’s pacing, and in the most insane way possible.


Manga Spoilers:
There were plenty of good hints to future reveals in this episode, the first of being the Eternity Devil’s own words.
I enjoyed the foreshadowing of Pochita’s true strength when the Eternity Devil declares that Denji is weaker than before, meaning Chainsaw Man before he was turned into Pochita.
Another, more sinister hint, is Makima staring daggers at Denji being kissed by Himeno, right before the vomit reveal.
This could understandable be misinterpreted by an anime only viewer to mean that she is jealous.
However, us manga readers know that she is most likely adding Himeno to her kill list so she can destroy Denji emotionally and release Chainsaw Man.
Finally, there is Kobeni, who says she is contracted with a Devil but refuses to name it.
We still do not know what Kobeni’s devil is in the manga and I wonder if we will ever know.
The most prominant theory I have heard is that it is something akin to a Bad Luck Devil, where she brings bad luck to everyone around her while she miraculously survives everything.
If Kobeni does make a return in Part Two then I expect we might find out.
Although, given how Fujimoto just loves to destroy us all emotionally by killing off characters, maybe it’s better that Kobeni stays away and safe.

Chainsaw Man Episode Five, Gun Devil Review: Manipulative Makima.

Mappa’s adaptation of Chainsaw Man is still going strong with its fifth episode, “Gun Devil.”
Directed by Yōsuke Takada, “Gun Devil” begins by immediately following up the cliffhanger from Episode Four, where Power confronted Denji in the bathroom to follow through on her promise to let him fondle her breasts three times.
From Denji’s thoughts declaring Power “an angel”, you would think that this would satisfy him completley.
Unfortunately, this is not the case for Denji.
First, Power is humourously revealed to be wearing breast pads after the first squeeze and then the other two squeezes produce nothing special for Denji, leaving him to wonder “that’s it?”
Denji’s emotionally stunted reaction continues into the next day, leaving him in the perfect state to be manipulated by Makima.
She all but seduces him, biting his finger and allowing him to touch her own breast.
Denji’s reaction to this is particularly hilarious, as he falls to the ground with a hand over his heart, gasping as he looks up at the hand Makima had allowed him to touch her with.
If you showed this short clip to anyone out of context, they would believe Denji was having a heart attack.
Instead, he is freaking out because he touched Makima’s breast.
Now having gained Denji’s full attention, Makima moves in for the kill, offering him any one wish he wants if he kills the Gun Devil for her.
Makima is pretty devious in her manipulation of Denji, using sexual attraction to manipulate him into taking on a dangerous Devil.
We then see just how dangerous this Devil is in a flashback.
After a terrorist attack in America involving guns (because of course it would be in America), guns became feared, making the Gun Devil incredibly powerful.
It then struck around the world, killing 1.2 million people.
Among these victims were Aki’s family.
We see the flashback from his point of view, as he has a snowball fight with his little brother, before sending him back to get a baseball glove.
Aki’s house is then struck by the Gun Devil, killing his parents and little brother.
This creates immense guilt for Aki, since he sent his little brother into the house, and also creates his drive to kill the Gun Devil, which we see when he and Himeno take down a Devil to retrieve flesh of the Gun Devil.
Makima explains to Denji that these flesh parts make other Devils stronger and can help lead to the Gun Devil.
So, Denji’s goal is to kill the Devils that have consumed pieces of the Gun Devil, which will eventually lead him to it and, upon killing it, will allow him to ask any wish of Makima.
If he survives fighting the Gun Devil, that is.
Still, Denji is determined to win his wish from Makima, completley ignorant to how he is being used by her.
It is not long before Denji gets his first chance to take on a Devil which has consumed flesh of the Gun, as he, Power, Aki, Himeno, Kobeni and Arai are sent to a hotel to take out such a Devil.
Following some comedic beats between Denji, Power and Aki, Himeno starts joking around, offering a kiss to anyone who kills the Devil.
Denji, however, remembers his wish for Makima so refuses, saying he has to kill the Gun Devil for her, drawing Aki’s attention.
Himeno is prodded further by Denji’s refusal, offering to kiss him with tounge,
This promise causes Denji to forget all about his Makima wish, as he runs down the hotel hallway to fight the Devil and earn his kiss, with Arai running behind to stop him.
Aki and Himeno use this time to discuss their new recruits, with Himeno commenting that Arai is not very competant yet is motivated, while Kobeni is timid but talented.
This causes Aki to remember his first meeting with Himeno and we see a very different person from the seemingly upbeat woman Himeno was previously.
The man who trained Aki introduces them at a Devil Hunter graveyard, where Himeno reveals that Aki will be her sixth partner, telling him not to die like the others.
The shot composition for this moment is great, as Himeno’s position and posture in the flashback when she tells Aki not to die is the exact same as in the present.
Going back to that present, the group finally locate the Devil they were hunting, which is just a head with two feet attatched.
It lunges at Kobeni but is stopped in the air by Himeno and then taken out in bloody fashion by Power.
As expected, Power’s narcissism drives her to believe the Devil froze in midair because it was afraid of her, so Himeno explains that it stopped because Himeno used the Ghost Devil’s power.
In exchange for this power, Himeno gave the Ghost Devil her right eye.
Power questions the logic of Himeno telling her all about her power, threatening Kobeni, only for Himeno to reveal this as a non-issue by threatening to strangle Power with the Ghost Devil’s hand.
Due to the dead Devil not creating any reaction from the Gun Devil flesh, the group decide this is not the Devil they were hunting, so they go up the stairs to search the ninth floor… only to emerge onto the eighth floor.
Arai notices this and runs back down the stairs, quickly emerging at the top of the eighth floor stairs, confirming to everyone that they are in a loop, as Kobeni timidly stammers in horror, bringing an end to the episode with the next ED, “In the Back Room” by Syoudo.
Overall, “Gun Devil” is another solid Chainsaw Man episode, with plenty of funny moments and excellent animation throughout.
Some of the shot composition was also great and, as for the story, Chainsaw Man seems to have finally introduced its main big bad of the Gun Devil.
I am looking forward to Episode Six, where we will see the explanation for why our characters are stuck on the eighth floor.

Manga Spoilers:
Okay, now that I am in the spoiler section, I can stop acting like the Gun Devil is the big bad.
The story does a great job with the misdirect, however, as it is introduced through Makima, the true antagonist of Chainsaw Man Part One.
It was also nice to get out introduction to Kishibe this episode, though he is not named.
Kishibe is one of my favourites from the manga so I am looking forward to seeing more of him, and Kenjiro Tsuda was definitley a great choice to voice him.
Another interesting detail in the episode is the first instance of the town and country mouse story.
We see Aki’s parents read this story to his brother before their deaths and this story is important because of how it relates to Denji.
Denji was a “country mouse”, living a life in squalor, wishing for bigger things.
So, he became the “town mouse” moving to the city and becoming a Devil Hunter for a better life, despite the extreme danger of the job.
The symbolism of this story will be further explored when we eventually get to the Bomb Girl Arc, which will introduce Reze.
We will probably have to wait for the next season to see this, though, since I think this one is only supposed to have twelve episodes.
If the high quality of animation continues, however, you certainly will not hear me complaining.

Chainsaw Man Episode Four, Rescue Review: Meet the Gang.

Just like Episode Three of Chainsaw Man ended with an incredibly animated action scene, Episode Four, “Rescue”, begins with an incredibly animated action scene.
Directed by Tatsuya Yoshihara, the episode begins with an anime original scene of Power grossly killing and consuming various animals before coming across Meowy, leading into the Bat Devil taking them hostage.
We see how desperate Power was to save Meowy, running so fast that she trips up, as she reflects on how wanting to save Meowy is foolish.
This ties back into her relationship with Denji in the present as, after her and Meowy are rescued by him, she questions why he would save them, only for Denji to point at her breasts and then do a fondling motion with his hand.
Much like how Power concluded running to save Meowy was a “foolish reason”, she also concludes Denji saving them to cop a feel is also a “foolish reason.”
Nevertheless, she agrees to honour her part of the deal, to which Denji celebrates, only to have his hand cut off by the Leech Devil mid-cheer.
The Leech Devil was the girlfriend of the Bat Devil and is wanting to kill Power and Meowy in revenge but is willing to let Denji go since she considers him cute.
Determined to cop his feel, Denji refuses.
The big fight of the episode then begins, and it is just as excellently animated as Denji’s fight with the Bat Devil in the previous episode.
It is also well adapted from the manga, with various new moments to the fight, like Denji hiding under the Bat Devil’s guts to launch a surprise attack.
In the end, though, the result is the same, with Denji being impaled with the Leech Devil’s tongue, ending their “dream battle.”
Thankfully, Aki shows up as uses his contract with the Fox Devil to save Denji.
“Kon” he says, forming a fox symbol with his hand, causing the Fox Devil to appear from nowhere and bite the Leech Devil’s head off.
It is in the aftermath of this fight where we get a brief look at the gang of Division Four.
We of course have Aki, then the eye patched Himeno (Mariya Ise), and new recruits Kobeni (Karin Takahashi) and Arai (Taku Yashiro).
Their introduction is brief, we do not even hear the recruit’s names, but the introduction shot of them does highlight their future importance.
On a side note, I will also say that I do really like Karin Takahashi as Kobeni so far.
I know she only said one word but she displayed it so timidly that it really sounded like Kobeni to me.
In any case, Aki then takes over the battle scene, helping an injured Denji to his feet and sending Meowy off to a veternarian for a checkup.
Later on, Denji awakens in the hostpital with his arm reattached.
Aki arrives with an apple for Denji and provides us with another lore dump, explaining that Devil Hunters make contracts with devils in order to fight them.
Aki is contracted with the Fox Devil, which eats a bit of his skin in exchange for him using its power.
As for Aki himself, he is still conflicted by Denji, shown by him holding off on giving Denji the apple pieces when he attempts to cover for Power, despite Denji reaching out for them.
But then Aki remembers all of the conflicting reports he heard about Denji from his fight with the Bat Devil.
Among those were the woman he yelled at to run if she did not want to get eaten, and the man who Denji injured by throwing his car at the Bat Devil with him in it.
Along with these, is the father and daughter who Denji saved.
Like I said in my Episode Three review, these two are actually from Chapter Two of the manga, where Denji saved the girl from the Muscle Devil.
This was cut from the anime but the father and daughter characters were kept and moved to the Bat Devil fight for Denji to save.
This was a good way to remove the Muscle Devil scene, yet retain its impact because the father and daughter still come to talk to Aki about Denji helping them.
In the end, Aki decides to work with Denji if he follows his every order, to which Denji does agree.
Aki then leaves Denji’s room and has Power freed, much to Himeno’s concern.
Following this, we get an anime original scene of Aki reporting to Makima.
Before he knocks on her door, however; he stops and then checks himself in the window, showing his crush on her.
While speaking with Makima, Aki also curiously mentions something about both the Bat and Leech Devils having “no traces of Gun flesh.”
After he finishs his report, Makima is rightly suspicious of how convenient Denji and Power’s side of the story is.
Aki covers for them by chalking it down to them being “unbelievably stupid”, which, to be fair to him, is not exactly wrong.
Makima also calls out how flexible Aki is being with the rules, correctly deducing Denji’s influence, to which Aki denies.
The anime original scenes continue, with the next one being Aki’s morning routine which, again, is extremely well animated.
Mappa really is going above and beyond with this adaptation, putting so much effort into the smallest of details.
Aki and Denji’s simple morning is quickly interrupted by the chaotic arrival of Power, whom Makima has assigned to live with them.
Aki protests until Makima compliments him, to which he ascends.
He probably quickly regrets this, though, because what follows is a comedic segment, of Power refusing to eat vegetables, refusing to flush the toilet, and refusing to bathe, things which are even too much for Denji to suffer through.
However, although Aki is suffering under the chaos his new roomate is causing, things are looking up for Denji because Power corners him in the bathroom to follow through on their deal, allowing him to touch her breasts three times.
Once for saving Meowy, a second time for killing the Bat Devil, and a third for lying about her to Aki.
This causes Denji to internally declare her an angel, bringing a comedic end to the episode.
This is followed by the ED “Jouzai” by TOOBEE; another fun ED with a lot of fun visuals of Power.
“Rescue” is another great episode of Chainsaw Man. 
Like Episode Three it has an incredibly animated fight scene, the quality of which also extends to the quieter moments.


Manga Spoilers Section:

“Rescue” had a lot of great hints towards the future of the story, most of them concerning Makima.
First, there is her interest in Denji influencing Aki, which is shown in the anime original scene.
This is a great addition because it subtly hints at her trying to create a family unit between them, just so she can rip it away from Denji to make Chainsaw Man hers.
Her having complete control over Aki is also foreshadowed by him immediately agreeing to house Power when Makima compliments him.
It is a funny moment now but it will become much more sinister when Makima is revealed to be the Control Devil.
The anime original scene also gives us an earlier mention of the Gun Devil, which will add to the reveal of what it is in the next episode, along with Aki’s backstory, which I am excited to see.

Chainsaw Man Episode Three, Meowy’s Whereabouts Review: All to Cop a Feel.

The first two episodes of Chainsaw Man started off Mappa’s adaptation excellently but, in my opinion, it is Episodes Three and Four where the quality really gets into high gear.
Directed by Hinori Tanaka, Episode Three, “Meowy’s Whereabouts”, prepares us for the excellent quality of animation we are going to see right from the get-go.
“Meowy’s Whereabouts” begins simply, picking up in the aftermath of Power destroying the Sea Cucumber Devil.
Makima is disappointed in Power for killing the devil since it was already being taken care, and in Denji for not controlling Power.
Makima then questions if Power is cut out to be a Devil Hunter.
This scares Power, who attempts to place the blame all on Denji, causing an argument, which comes to an end when Makima calmly asks them to quiet down.
Despite the calmness of this request Power is again terrified into submission, as she timidly agrees to work with Denji.
Although this opening scene is a simple one, animation wise, I was still amazed by simple details like Makima resting her face in her hand.
Even little details like her fingernails were much more detailed than in other anime, preparing us for the fantastic animation that is to come when Denji eventually faces off against the Bat Devil in the back half of the episode.
“Meowy’s Whereabouts” then goes about setting that fight up with its next scene, as Denji and Power are hanging around some vending machines.
A cat approaches Power and she uses this as an opportunity to talk about her own cat Meowy, who was kidnapped by a devil.
Denji seems uninterested, focusing on his goal of touching boobs.
This results in a good laugh when Power manipulates Denji into helping, saying she would let him touch hers if he saves Meowy, causing Denji to act outraged that the devil stole the cat and vowing to save it.
Yet, he is completley unaware that Power has just lured him into a trap.
Although, so is the audience, at that point.
Following the intro, Denji and Power head off to save Meowy, with Denji attempting to relate to Power by talking about Pochita, saying he is sad he cannot pet him because he lives in his heart.
However, much like Denji dismissed Meowy before Power made her offer, Power too dismisses Pochita, believing Denji is just saying that as a way to get through his grief.
It is interesting how despite having a similar love for their pets, Power and Denji still do not get along at this stage and dismiss each other’s feelings, something that will be resolved as the episode progresses.
Before that can happen, however; the scene cuts to Makima being interviewed by her bosses about her squad, to which she describes Denji as “interesting”, while she and her bosses use plenty of dog metaphors for him again.
On the drive back, Aki questions Makima about finding Denji “interesting”, and it is here that we get one of the first big lore dumps of the series, as Makima describes how devils work.
She states that every devil is born with a name and how much that name is feared determines how strong the devil is.
So, for example, a coffee devil would be rather weak but a car devil would be pretty strong since there is a common fear of being run over.
Therefore, a Chainsaw Devil would have to be powerful as well, which is the implication Makima gives for why she finds Denji so interesting.
Aki still insists on Denji being unhelpful and what happens next initially proves him to be right.
As Denji and Power approach the abandoned house where Meowy is being held hostage, Denji wonders why Power is approaching with him because she said the devil would kill Meowy if she got close.
This causes Power’s entire story to fall apart and, once Denji realizes he has been lured into a trap, he lunges forward, only to be too slow as Power whacks him over the head with a hammer made from her blood.
She then drags the injured Denji inside the house where the Bat Devil is waiting for her.
The Bat Devil’s arm was cut off by a Devil Hunter so he uses Denji’s blood to revive himself, only to be disgusted by the taste.
Therefore, he decides to punish Power.
By this point, one could be forgiven for thinking that Power had lied to Denji about Meowy but it is revealed she was telling the truth as the Bat Devil has taken Meowy hostage.
His punishment for Power is for her to watch as he swallows Meowy hole, while she looks on in horror.
We then get a flashback to show how the bond between the two formed.
After the Blood Devil became the Fiend known as Power, she killed and ate everything she came across.
This was until Meowy found her, after Power had killed a bear.
However, Meowy was skin and bones so Power began to feed them in the hopes of fattening them up so she could eat them.
What she did not count on, however, was becoming attatched to Meowy.
It was after she had this realization that the Bat Devil took Meowy hostage, ordering Power to find him a human to eat to save her cat.
Power ran off to do so, only to be eventually captured by Makima off screen.
With the flashback done, the scene changes to present day, where we finally get the first moment of conciliation between Power and Denji, as Power states that she now finally understands how Denji felt when he said that he could no longer pet Pochita.
The Bat Devil’s punishment for Power continues, as he eats her next.
He probably should have chewed, however, because seeing Power and Meowy trapped in the Bat Devil’s stomach makes Denji rush to save them by catching a ride on the Bat Devil.
“Gimme my tits back!” He humorously shouts, calling back to his deal with Power.
But Denji’s reasons for trying to save Power does not fully conform with this dream as he also wants to save her because he has finally come to sympathise with her, just like she did him.
As Denji pulls the rip cord on his chest to unleash his chainsaw powers, he recalls a time when he lost Pochita and became scared that he had eaten by a devil, only to find him when he came back home.
He and Pochita then slept beside each other and Denji remembers how relieved he felt, before wondering how scared Power must have been sleeping while knowing the Bat Devil had Meowy.
This thought concluded, Denji begins his rescue attempt for Power and Meowy in spectacular and gory fashion, as the chainsaw rips through his own head as he transforms.
He then cuts off the Bat Devil’s arm again, causing the two of them to fall from the sky, crashing into a building, nearly hitting a woman.
Denji urges the woman to flee before she gets eaten.
A gloriously animated fight then follows between Denji and the Bat Devil, during which Denji also saves a father and daughter, both of whom should look familar to manga readers.
This is because they are the father and daughter from Chapter Two who were cut from the anime.
However, even though Denji does save them, he could care less about other people, as he throws a car at the Bat Devil with a man still inside.
The man barely manages to get out in time, thankfully.
Afterwards, the Bat Devil seems to be put an end to the fight, defeating Denji with a sonic sound wave, which has great sound design, by the way.
The Bat Devil is then about to begin feasting on humans once more, only for Denji to emerge from the rumble of a building, angrily declaring how mad he is about not being about to cop a feel yet.
It is quite hilarious to hear Denji’s voice actor, Kikunosuke Toya, scream so passionately about this.
The Bat Devil is also stunned by this because it causes him to drop the person he was about to eat.
The question is if he dropped the man out of fear for Denji or because he was stumped by how stupid Denji is.
My money is on both.
Denji then easily kills the Bat Devil in bloody fashion, ripping him open, as blood rains down on him in a killer shot that brings an end to the episode.
We then get our third ED “Hawatari 2-oku Centi” by Maximum the Hormone, which is my favourite so far, with its visuals and foreshadowing for the future.
The entire fight between Denji and the Bat Devil this episode was absolutley excellent, with incredible animation throughout.
I am extremely glad that it was Mappa who was chosen to animate Chainsaw Man because of how great of a job they have been doing and I cannot wait to see more.


Manga Spoilers Section:
One thing I enjoyed about how “Meowy’s Whereabouts” adapted the manga was how well it translated Power’s fear of Makima.
From the animation of her reaction, to Fairouz Ai’s voice performance; all of this does a great job at foreshadowing how Makima is bad news.
Another nice detail was the inclusion of the father and daughter from Chapter Two, who are saved by Denji from the Bat Devil here, instead of the Muscle Devil.
This meant that they could be used for an Episode Four scene, where Aki flashes back to them talking about how Denji saved them.
I will talk about that scene in the review for that episode, which I will be releasing alongside this one.

Chainsaw Man Episode Two, Arrival in Tokyo Review: Always go for the Nuts.

After the fantastic first episode of Chainsaw Man‘s anime adaptation, Mappa continue to impress with Episode Two, “Arrival in Tokyo”, directed by Tōko Yatabe.
Picking up right after Denji agrees to work for Makima after she offers him food, the episode begins with a close-up of Makima’s eye, highlightly how unusual her eyes are.
The animaton of this close-up is incredible, from the reflection of the passing countryside in Makima’s eye, to even the way she blinks.
This quality of animation is continued throughout the episode, with every little moment being so well animated.
Inside the car, Makima and Denji have a conversation, where Makima continues to compare him to a dog, saying she only wants to hear “yes” or “woof” from him because she does not need a dog who says “no”, threatening to have him “put down” if he is not useful.
This naturally freaks Denji out, or at least it does until Makima offers to pay for his food and gives him her jacket.
No one has been nice to Denji before, so this small kindness from Makima causes him to fall in love with her instantly, seemingly forgetting how she literally just threatened his life.
That is the tragic thing about Denji: He will accept being worked like a dog for the smallest of rewards because his harsh life has caused him to value those small things that most of us take for granted.
After the OP, we see Denji and Makima getting their food, where Denji explains to Makima how Pochita became his heart and Makima says there is no precedent for his condition, so it does not have a name.
Denji looks dejected about this, until Makima says she believes him because she has a strong sense of smell, allowing her to sniff out that he is part human and part devil.
This is, of course, a huge relief to Denji but he then passes out because of his exhaustion and, when he wakes up, Makima feeds him, increasing Denji’s affection for her to the point that he asks if there is a guy she likes.
Makima replies “I’m into the ‘Denji’ Type”, pretty much sealing the deal on Denji’s feelings for her.
However, what anime only viewers may not know about this scene is that there is actually a big cut from the manga.
In Chapter Two, right before Denji and Makima order food, an injured man runs up to them shouting that his daughter has been kidnapped by a devil.
Makima threatens Denji into going to rescue the girl but he finds her playing with it instead.
The girl claims that her father beats her so the devil saved her and, now scared of Makima, Denji offers to run away with the girl and the devil.
Unfortunately for him, this is a trap because the devil is the Muscle Devil and has taken control of the girl’s body.
The Muscle Devil attempts to kill Denji and the girl but Denji transforms into his devil form and kills it, returning the girl to her thankful father.
While it was unfortunate to see this moment from the manga get the axe, it is not too important in the grand scheme of the story.
Also, I think they manage to construct the opening scene of the episode just fine without it.
Making Makima threaten Denji in the beginning, instead of when she sends him to kill the Muscle Devil, does add to the theme of Denji accepting being treated like a dog, when he decides he loves Makima after she treats him well a moment later.
With this scene done, the episode cuts to Makima leading Denji through the city to the Devil Hunters’ Tokyo headquarters.
It is there that Denji is given a change of clothes and, more importantly, meets his new colleague and another fan favourite character, Aki Hayakawa (Shogo Sakata).
Denji is upset that Aki will be his colleague rather than Makima, causing Aki to drag him away, passing a painting of what I have been told is an illustration by Gustave Dore of Dante’s Divine Comedy.
In order to reassure Denji, Makima tells him they can only work togethor if he does a good job, doing up his tie.
However, it will be hard for Denji to do a good job if Aki succeeds in getting him to quit the Devil Hunters, which is exactly what he tries to do, leading Denji into an alley and then beating him up.
Aki berates Denji for only joining the Devil Hunters to get close to Makima, believing only those with strong convictions can survive as a Devil Hunter, chucking a cigarette at him and then spitting on him.
Aki underestimates Denji, however, because he attacks him from behind, kicking Aki right in the family jewels and then continues to kick saying whenever he fights, “It’s nuts or nothing!”
Denji then further proves how much Aki underestimates him because he explains he does have strong convictions in regards to living a good life, stating, “if I get to keep up this kind of life? I don’t care if it kills me.”
Aki then proves how he did not entirely have good intentions by attempting to convince him to leave the Devil Hunters, since he takes offence to Denji believing he could get with Makima, showing off his jealousy.
Aki prepares to fight Denji, yet he apparently was not listening when Denji says he fights “nuts or nothing” as he leaves said nuts undefended, leading to Denji kicking them in again.
Denji then takes Aki back to Makima, humorously claiming that the nut devil attacked his testicles.
Despite Denji and Aki clearly not getting along, Makima puts Denji in his squad.
Aki is reluctant but Makima insists, explaining Denji’s situation and that he will be disposed of as a devil if he tries to leave.
Denji asks what this means and Makima replies, “it means we’re working togethor until you die.”
Personally, I was sad to see the translation from the manga I have was not used, which is, “it means we’ll be working togethor until death do us part.”
The marriage proposal elements to that line always seemed like a good way for Makima to lure Denji in more, so I am not the biggest fan of this new translation.
Although, it is just one line so it is not too big of a deal.
Anyway, after Denji and Aki are partnered togethor, Aki takes Denji to live in his apartment.
On the way there, Denji questions if Makima is a good person, yet still wants to hug her.
Upon hearing this, Aki gives a cry of shock, which seemed much more exagerated in the anime and was thus way funnier.
Even funnier still is how Aki’s life takes a turn for the worse with Denji as a roomate.
Denji makes a mess by making a mess of a sandwich, sings loudly in the bath, and uses up all of the toilet paper.
Aki’s frustration only grows when he and Denji are sent to kill a Fiend, a devil which has taken over a dead body.
To see what Denji is capable of in his devil form, Aki orders him to transform and then kill the devil, only for Denji to simply kill it in his human form.
This angers Aki and he accuses Denji of not taking things seriously, revealing his entire family was killed by a devil right in front of his eyes.
He follows this up by questioning if Denji wants to make friends with devils and Denji responds yes because he does not have friends.
This appears to strike a cord with Aki, causing him to leave Denji alone with the dead Fiend… and a bunch of porno mags to steal.
The real reason Denji did not transform into his chainsaw form is that he did not want to get blood on the porn.
Remembering his deal with Pochita to live his dreams, Denji replies that he is living his dream but he feels something is missing.
This leads to Denji deciding what his next big, massively important goal in life is, and that is to touch boobs.
Yes, I am serious.
It is kind of funny to compare Denji to other shounen protaganists.
Some want to save the world, while others want revenge.
Hell, even Aki fits the latter type of character, yet he is not the protaganist; Denji is, and Denji just wants to touch some boobs.
So strong is this new conviction he has that it leads to him shouting about boobs in Makima’s prescence.
Again, this was an instance where I found the manga translation to be better.
In the manga, Denji shouts “melons” at Makima, rather than boobs, causing her to question, “fruit?”
This is a lot funnier than the anime version, which just has Makima repeating back what Denji says, rather than the humorous misunderstanding in the manga.
There was not much time to dwell on this small issue, however, because we then get our introduction to yet another fan favourite character, the Fiend, Power (Fairouz Ai).
Fun fact for anyone who does not know: Power’s personality is actually based off Eric Cartman from South Park. 
No, I am not kidding.
Everything about Power’s introduction is great in the anime.
The animation is excellent, Fairouz Ai’s performance is also great, and the marching band-like soundtrack suits Power’s character perfectly.
Denji is at first reluctant to work with a Fiend, until he gets a look at Power’s chest and instantly decides he’s okay with it.
The two are then sent out on their first patrol, which does not go well because they cannot find any devils.
Power claims this is because she was a devil all others feared before she became a Fiend, showing off her arrogance.
Denji believes her, however, and speculates that Aki set them up togethor to fail, imagining Aki pulling a funny face at him that is 100% a face Aki would never pull.
His inner turmoil is quickly interrupted, though, when Power smells bloods and runs off in a mad dash to attack and kill the Sea Cucumber Devil.
This is another moment I think was funnier in the manga but not due to the translation this time.
No, I think it was funnier in the manga because the focus was on the civilian Devil Hunter in the phone booth trying and failing to tell his colleague about the Sea Cucumber Devil, only to be interrupted by Power obliterating it.
In the anime, the scene passes by very quickly with not much focus on the humor of Power interrupting the man.
Still, the animation of this moment is once again great and Fairouz Ai does a fantastic job delivering Power’s maniacal laughter, which brings an end to the episode.
Overall, “Arrival in Tokyo” is another great Chainsaw Man episode.
I did have some issues with the translations and certain moments not being as funny as in the manga but, that aside, this is still an enjoyable episode with fantastic animation, music and voice acting.


Manga Spoiler Section:

Upon my second read through of Chainsaw Man, it was quite enjoyable to see how Tatsuki Fujimoto had put foreshadowing for how the manga would end in the opening chapters.
“Arrival in Tokyo” did a good job of adapting this foreshadowing, with Makima telling Denji that she has a good sense of smell, hinting at how she will eventually be defeated by him.
There is also a good amount of symbolism for Makima with the Divine Comedy painting seen when Aki drags Denji away.
The painting appears to show a demon attacking or chasing a man, probably hinting at Makima torturing Denji by taking everything he loves away, all with the end goal of relasing Pochita as Chainsaw Man.
Throughout the episode there are also nice little nods to other characters’ future actions.
One of these is small moment at the end of the episode, when Power looks at a cat she and Denji pass, foreshadowing how rescuing her cat is currently her priority, which we will see next episode.
“Arrival in Tokyo” had a lot of great character foreshadowing, which I am sure will make it an interesting rewatch for anime only viewers, once the adaptation of Part One of the manga is complete.

Chainsaw Man Episode One, Dog & Chainsaw Review: Simple Dreams in a Horrifying World.

After well over a year of anticipation and hype, Mappa just released its first episode of the Chainsaw Man adaptation, “Dog & Chainsaw”, directed by Ryū Nakayama.
If anyone had any doubts about whether this anime would live up to expectations, I am certain that this episode blew any skepticism clear out of the water.
“Dog & Chainsaw” is a phenominal beginning for the anime, delivering excellently on all fronts, including animation, voice acting and soundtrack.
The episode begins with an anime original scene of our main character Denji (Kikunosuke Toya) having a nightmare about approaching a strange door in an alleyway.
As a manga reader, I know what this dream means but I will leave that for the spoiler section below, just in case any anime only viewers happen to stumble across this review.
After waking up, Denji goes Devil hunting with his own pet Devil, Pochita (Shiori Izawa), an orange, dog-like creature with a chainsaw attatched to its head.
Denji lives in a world where Devils representing human fears plague humanity.
Unfortunately, Denji is dirt poor because his father killed himself after becoming indebted to the Yakuza.
Now, Denji has to pay off all of his father’s debt or be murdered, which lead to him selling one of his eyes, kidney, and even one of his testicles.
What gets him the most profit, however, is Devil hunting, as we see him prepare to use Pochita to take out the Tomato Devil,, before the episode cuts to the opening “Kick Back” by Kenshi Yozenu.
This opening is a lot of fun, with a great song and visuals which I will discuss the meaning of in the manga spoiler section.
After the opening, we see the aftermath of Denji and Pochita’s fight with the Tomato Devil, handing the corpse off to the Yakuza Boss who kindly gives Denji his payment… before ripping him off by taking most of his hard earned money for petty things like a “finder’s fee.”
On top of this, another Yakuza member mistreats Denji further, by offering him money if he eats a cigarette to which, desperate for money as he is, Denji accepts.
He does prove his intelligence, however, by not swallowing the cigarette so he can spit it out when the Yakuza leave.
Returning to the shed in the forest he calls home, we see how much worse Denji’s life is since, because of the Yakuza’s extortion, he can only afford to buy a single piece of bread for him and Pochia to eat.
This harsh life has caused Denji to view simple dreams, like going out on a date with a girl, to be akin to life changing ones; a key component of his character, which will be explored in later episodes.
None of this exploration would have happened without Pochita, however, as we see how he saved Denji’s life in a flashback.
After Denji’s father died, the Yakuza boss demanded money from him to be ready the next day, threatening to cut him up and sell his organs if he fails.
It was at this hopeless moment when Denji met Pochita and accepted his death by a Devil, only to see that Pochita was injured.
Remembering his own father’s suicide, Denji decides to save Pochita by offering his blood, making a contract with the little Devil and starting his Devil hunting career.
Following this flashback, Denji reminisces more on his simple dreams, before coughing up blood, leading to him remembering being told that his mother died from a heart condition, which caused her to cough up blood.
So, on top of the crushing poverty and extortion by the Yakuza, Denji then realizes he probably does not have long to live, meaning the simple dreams he lives for can never be achieved.
The poor guy just can not catch a break.
This is proven when the Yakuza boss takes him to kill another Devil, only for it to be a trap.
The Yakuza boss and his underlings stupidly made a contract with the Zombie Devil to obtain a Devil’s power like Denji did.
All this did was turn them all into the undead, now completley under the control of the Zombie Devil, who wants to kill Denji and Pochita for being Devil Hunters.
What follows is the brutal murder of the two, as they are struck from behind, chased down, stabbed to death, cut into pieces and thrown into a dumpster.
Kikunosuke Toya gives an excellent performance during this scene, with his agonised screams adding to the horror.
And so Denji’s short and cruel life ends cruely, or, at least, it would have if it were not for Pochita again.
Revived by Denji’s blood, he makes a contract with Denji, “I’ll give you my heart. And in exchange, I want you to show me your dreams.”
Now revived, Denji emerges from the dumpster, the only remaining remnant of Pochita being a cord now attatched to his chest.
Upon noticing his revival, the Zombie Devil orders his zombie slaves to eat Denji, and they tackle him to the ground as he pulls the cord.
The sound of the groaning undead is slowly overtaken by the sound of a revving chainsaw.
With a gory slash, Denji emerges from beneath the hoard, his face now that of a monstrous chainsaw, along with his hands.
The gore galore promised by the trailer then comences, as Denji quickly cuts the screaming Zombie Devil apart in bloody and spectacularly animated fashion.
Denji’s chainsaws are clearly CGI but they are the good kind, mixing well with the 2D animation.
After the Zombie Devil has been brutally despatched, Denji moves onto the zombified Yakuza, including his former boss, killing them all and washing his debt away in a river of blood.
Some time later, the government Devil Hunters arrive, lead by a woman named Makima (Tomori Kusunoki).
They find Denji inside the warehouse, surrounded by the dead zombies.
In a daze, Denji asks Makima to hug him, clearly remembering his old dream, and Makima accepts this requet, causing Denji to return to his human form.
Makima then gives him two options.
Either, A, he can be killed by her as a devil, or B, Makima can keep him as a human, offering to feed him.
This prompts Denji to ask what he will have for breakfast and Makima replies simple things like, “bread with butter and jam, salad, coffee, and then maybe something for desert.”
Well, as we know, simple dreams like breakfast are big ones for Denji, so Makima is really offering to fulfill one of his dearest wishes, leading to him accepting the offer, as the episode comes to an end.
Throughout this scene, the soundtrack by Keunsuke Ushio presents a melancholic feeling that represents the hope Denji is feeling in this moment really well.
I just knew that the composer for anime like A Silent Voice would do a great job with the soundtrack for Chainsaw Man.
I look forward to hearing the rest of his work, just as I look forward to seeing the rest of th3 ending songw we get.
Mappa took an interesting approach to the Chainsaw Man’s episode endings, as each one will have a different song, with Episode One’s being “Chainsaw Blood” by Vaundy, which is another banger, just like the opening.
All of the music, from the opening and ending song, to Ushio’s soundtrack, are amazing.
Along with this, the animation of the episode is great throughout, with plenty of little details throughout, like the veins in some character’s eyes.
Finally, there is the voice acting, which is so far also really good.
Watching the trailer, I was admittedly surprised to hear Tomori Kusunkoki’s soft voice as Makima but I think it works perfectly after this episode by making the character perfectly alluring.
“Dog & Chainsaw” is an all around fantastic first episode for the Chainsaw Man adaptation.
Studio Mappa is clearly dedicated to giving the manga the best adaptation that it can and I cannot wait to see the rest of my new favourite manga be adapted in anime form.


Manga Spoiler Section:

The first thing I will talk about concerning manga spoilers is the anime original scene of Denji having a nightmare about the door.
This early foreshadowing will work wonders, setting up the reveal that Denji killed his own father, which will come later in the story.
Placing the dream right at the beginning puts the mystery of the door firmly in the audience’s mind from the start, which is a good thing.
Now, for my thoughts on the opening’s foreshadowing.
For starters, one of my favourite moments from it was the moment with the entire gang sitting in a movie theatre.
It felt like it was hinting at Chapter 39, where Denji and Makima go to the movies.
Not only that but this moment in the opening also hints at what the character dynamics will be like in the future of the anime.
We see Makima feeding Denji popcorn, hinting at her control over him, Power stealing Kobeni’s seat, and Aki being the only one of the group to be focusing on the movie.
The opening having a moment in the theatre is also perfect for Chainsaw Man, considering how much of a movie fan Tatsuki Fujimoto is.
This fact can be seen throughout the opening, with various other moments refrencing popular films, with shots resembling those found in Pulp Fiction, The Big Lebowski, and many other films, being present.
After the movie theater moment in the opening, we then get various little hints to Makima’s hold over Denji, some subtle and others not.
Probably the most unsubtle of all is Makima having Denji on a dog leash.
More subtle is the moment when Makima feeds Denji a snail, which, I am told, looks to be infected by a parasite which controls its brain, further hinting at her attempting to manipulate Denji.
Other cool little teasers in the opening show glimpses of the Future Devil, Ghost Devil and Katanna Man, along with hints at Aki and Power’s pasts.
The opening then ends by showing the family dynamic that will emerge between Denji, Power and Aki, with Denji and Power goofing around dancing, while Aki watches.
This opening was great and its hints towards future events from the manga were fun to catch.
As for the original anime only scene, I wonder if there will be any more throughout the anime?
It will be interesting to see what gets added across Chainsaw Man‘s adaptation.