Anime Journal - Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba, Episode 2

This is a continuing journal of the great anime series Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba. Produced by Ufotable and released in late 2019. I'm re-watching each episode, providing a synopsis, and adding my own observations. You can read the first episode coverage here. 

Episode 2: "Trainder Sakonji Urodaki"

Tanjiro and his now demon sister have come down from their mountain home after the rest of the family have been murdered by a demon. Tanjiro makes a carrying basket where he places his sister because she is afraid of the sunlight. Traveling at night, Tanjiro smells blood and they rush to a nearby temple to give aid. They discover that a demon has murdered everyone in the temple and is casually licking the blood off of his fingers. Tanjiro is attacked by the demon while Nazuko remains captivated by the blood. She begins to salivate. 

Meanwhile, Tanjiro is fighting off the demon but is being slowly overwhelmed. At the last minute, his sister rushes to his aid and kicks the head off of the attacking demon along with the body. Tanjiro is horrified when the head starts to talk and the demon body attacks again. Nezuko is beaten by the demon and is hurled into the forest while Tanjiro is left to fend for himself. Tanjiro fights well and eventually head-butts the demon-head and sticks him to a tree with his hatchet. When he finds Nezuko he tackles the demon-body but ends up going over a cliff. He is saved by his sister and the demon body perishes in the fall. 

Back to the tree where the demon-head is stuck, Tanjiro realizes he must kill the demon with his knife, but he can't bring himself to do it. At this point, trainer Sakonji Urodaki shows up in a Goblin mask and urges Tanjiro to kill the demon. When Tanjiro continues to struggle with the choice, Urodaki smells the empathy coming from the boy and thinks he will never make it as a demon-slayer. 

When the sun rises, the demon is burned away to the astonishment of Tanjiro. Nezuko has fled back to the house and is inside the basket Tanjiro made. When Tanjiro talks to Urodaki, who has buried the murdered people in the temple, he is slapped across the face when he can't answer what he will do when his sister murderers someone. Urodaki explains that Tanjiro must be more decisive and understands that his sister can never kill a human. 

Next, we see Tanjiro running behind Urodaki heading back to Urodaki's house. Tanjiro is exhausted from carrying his sister in her basket strapped to his back. Urodoki then takes him to the top of Mt. Sagiri and tells him he must be back to the house before sunrise. He vanishes leaving Tanjiro to discover that the mountain has been booby-trapped with rocks, tripwires and flying logs. Tanjiro is battered but using his keen sense of smell he makes it back to the house just as dawn is breaking. Urodaki accepts Tanjiro as his student and recalls the letter that was sent to him by Demon Slayer Giyu (from Episode 1). 


The difference in weather is clear when Tanjiro arrives at the bottom of the mountain and we see it is warm and Spring-like as compared to the cold, snowy mountain he came from. It makes you wonder why he and his family chose to live in such a harsh environment. Perhaps being mountain people they are more resilient and tougher psychologically. Tanjiro shows his ingenuity in creating a basket for Nezuko to ride in, but is odd that he doesn't heed the warnings of the locals to stay off of Mt. Sagiri as people "have gone missing". 

We are reminded of how keen Tanjiro's sense of smell is when they come across a temple with lights on. When Tanjiro rushes to the temple to help, he encounters his first demon. This whole episode is really built around Tanjiro's discovery and understanding of what a demon is and how they function. It is also set up to test Nazuko with the bleeding dead bodies. Both prevail because they are bound to each other and because of their natural abilities. Even with no training, Tanjiro instinctively fights well against his first demon. 

When trainer Urodaki arrives he immediately begins to evaluate Tanjiro as Demon Hunter material and concludes he has too much empathy and is slow to take action. In the scene where Urodaki slaps Tanjiro, it is shocking to see such blunt violence against Tanjiro. But it becomes apparent that Tanjiro is naive about him and his sister's situation. Urodaki is already starting the process of toughing him up. 

Tanjiro's test is a foregone conclusion after everything he's already gone through which is why the director made the scene so short. It's also a very nice tough that the episode concludes with Giyu's letter about Tanjiro. It reinforces how important Giyu will be in the series, but also connects Urodaki and Tanjiro as they both have a keen sense of smell. 

Note that a crow opens and closes the episode giving a bit of foreshadowing to the bird's role in coming adventures. 

Voice actor Hochu Otsuka plays Urodaki. His voice is extraordinary. He's been in several important anime series like Naruto and is always excellent. 

May 19, 2020


Recent Comments

Contact Me