Demon Slayer’s Emphasis on Love and Growth Stay Evergreen
The new season of Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba is in full swing, introducing new characters while also spotlighting the heroes we’ve met along the way. It can be tough following on the heels of the fantastic Demon Slayer the Movie: Mugen Train, but what I’ve come to notice is that no matter where the story has gone, there’s a level of consistency that goes beyond technical quality. Demon Slayer never seems to lose sight of its heart, and the foundational elements that make the series appealing in the first place are still present, especially in the way it emphasizes the power of kindness even in fury.
What It Means to Be Brother and Sister
No matter which fights, characters, or arcs one might consider better than the rest, there’s a certain baseline of emotional resonance that still makes you feel close to Tanjiro Kamado and his journey to bring his sister Nezuko back from demonhood. Previously, I wrote about how the sibling relationship between Tanjiro and Nezuko is a significant part of its core appeal, and this is on full display in the Entertainment District Arc. The strength of that familial bond speaks to their gentle-yet-stalwart souls, and to see them roused to righteous anger only further highlights the inherent goodness within them.
Strength Born from Love
One of the most common tropes in shounen action series is to tease the prospect of its characters gradually reaching their true potential while towing the line between what makes the heroes special and what makes them relatable. Demon Slayer is no exception, whether it’s the “Sun Breathing” that Tanjiro seems to have unknowingly inherited from his father, or the mysterious “Exploding Blood” Demon Blood Art that Nezuo wields. But the series also presents their power growth as being the result of a desire to help, and how they continuously push past their limits because they want to be strong for those who need it. Tanjiro’s righteous indignation at the wanton loss of life brought about by the demon Daki and Nezuko’s desire to protect her brother showcase this well.
Compassion Is Contagious
But the importance of that compassion extends outside of combat and even to characters beyond Tanjiro and Nezuko. Early in the arc, Tanjiro helps Rengoku Kyojuro’s father recover from years of drunken bitterness by helping him understand just how much he and his sons have truly loved one another. Similarly, the almost fatherly care that Tanjiro gives to someone like Inosuke results in Inosuke reciprocating that sentiment, albeit in unorthodox ways. Even the love shown by Uzui the Hashira towards his three wives speaks to the centrality of kindness in Demon Slayer, with Uzui stressing to them the importance of their lives over fulfilling missions.
As the Entertainment District Arc continues, Demon Slayer seem to be moving towards the idea that what the main antagonist, Muzan, fears most in Tanjiro is that loving and caring heart—not because it’s an inherent antidote to demonic influence, but because it shatters the fear that Muzan uses to maintain his grip on power. However when this particular plot ends, I’m confident that Demon Slayer will keep being a great series that focuses on the transformative power of kindness.
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