In an arc, where almost everything was beyond ‘flashy’, there’s still a few things we can nitpick here and there that could’ve been a little better.
1. Not long enough!
If the goal of the show was to give us a one-for-one adaptation of the manga, they certainly accomplished that. Sometimes, when you have a cash-cow like Demon Slayer, you would think they would want to exploit the fandom for as long as they can, for as much money as they can. Like what they did what the “Mugen Train Arc,” they could have applied that extra content like the first episode of the arc, showing what Kyojuro was doing before the movie began. One more order of content surrounding the “Entertainment District Arc” one-gai-shi-masu!
It was clear by the end of the show, how they wanted to go about pacing. By the time the battle began, they essentially used the first half of the episodes to introduce backstory elements and building character arcs, as the back half of the episodes involved a lot of fighting. One thing they could have done, was explain more about their training the past 6 months. When Zenitsu showed off his “God Speed,” while epic; I was still like, “when did he learn that?” Beyond the epic amount of money it took to animate these scenes, I wish they introduced more backstory. Who knows.. Maybe we’ll get some nice side backstory mangas like they did for Tomioka and Kyojuro’s “Stories of Water and Flame.”
2. Not enough Tengen Uzui
The show does such a good job introducing characters in a relatively short span of time. The ability to get the audience to understand and buy into his abilities, backstory and characteristics is something not many shows does a good job of. On the flip-side, a more fleshed out backstory on Uzui and his wives, could do wonders for the lore of Uzui. There are many shinobi characters in anime, but there is only one shinobi I know with 3 wives!
Uzui has so many characteristics that really belong in that Kakashi class of strong, witty and adept leader/mentor role. Since the show lost Kyojuro, Uzui essentially took his spot as the hero’s mentor. Now with Uzui legitimately retiring, we are going to be missing that kind of character for the next arc; as Tokito and Kanroji are totally different kind of characters. I guess I know what I’m previewing for the next Demon Slayer arc!
3. No explanation of why Nezuko got so powerful out of no where
For an arc that introduced a lot of “that’s new” and “I never saw that before.” The only real explanation we got from the show was the link between Tanjiro’s “Hinokami Kagura” and this newer character from the past that has a similar scar on his head like Tanjiro’s. Inosuke and Zenitsu’s newly introduced abilities could be chalked up to just never revealing they had the ability like Inosuke’s ability to move his organs; and the assumption for Zenitsu is that he probably just trained to in the last 6 months to achieve his ‘Godspeed’ ability. Two arcs later, the only reveal we have really with anything Nezuko related is that she is ‘unique’. I mean unique, as in she doesn’t act and need blood like the typical demon. Somehow, someway, she became close to hashira level strength. Although, it was cool and exciting to see her save Tanjiro and beat the crap out of Daki—when you think about it harder, it kind of came out of nowhere.
4. Suma, Makio and Hinatsuru played too small of a role..
Being in the anime intro with all of our beloved characters, you would think the characters participating in it would have a larger role. Besides being eye-candy and helping prop up Uzui’s profile as a badass character, they were literally side.. side characters. For me at least, I bought into their personalities from the get go. Once again, let’s acknowledge how well Koyoharu Gotouge plays with cliche avatars like Suma, Makio and Hinatsuru. The 3 clearly have their own unique characteristics that’s built for good onscreen banter between them.
With the backstory of how Uzui and his wives met, there is so much more here that can be expanded upon. Typically, these ninja stories are harsh and brutally dark, which Demon Slayer is that. Using Koyoharu’s ‘oxymoron-ical’ way of constructing Uzui’s character as being a flashy, yet supposedly quiet ninja; Uzui, Suma, Makio and Hinatsuru, clearly have this fun and upbeat vibe about them that contrasts what you would expect out of some ninjas. They could expand upon their love life, how they got out of the shinobi life, Demon Slayer Corp. life, retirement life and maybe expand on WHY IS TENGEN SO DAMN FLASHY?! There’s more I want to say here, but I think these four have what it takes to at least, sell us a mini-series manga.
5. What about the townspeople in the “Entertainment District?”
I mean.. I hope all the h**s are okay. Just kidding.. Really though. What about all the townspeople they just saved? In a place where the main business is “cash for booty,” you’d think this societal concern would have been addressed. The setting was ripe for the expansion as envy, beauty and lust percolated through the hierarchy of Japan’s caste system—that district ultimately, gave us Daki and Gyutaro. What was the bigger life lesson we are suppose to be getting out of this? I think the arc did a good job at answering the ‘why’ the characters are the way they are, but they never addressed the macro issue of their environment, which was the “Entertainment District.”
If there was a life-learning lesson in this arc, it is to persevere no matter how crappy your life situation is. No matter how bad your life is, you’ll still regret making demonic decisions because deep down our human instincts want to do good. Sometimes, you can be born into one of the worst situations ever; Gyutaro & Daki vs Tanjiro & Nezuko gives us examples of how people can handle tragedy. Even Gyutaro, regretted not giving his little sister Ume, the chance at a better life. What I would have liked at the end after recovering, is how our heroes could have helped rebuild the town to prevent demons rising from these kind of circumstances.
I was pulling tooth and nail to try to come up with some ideas that I didn’t like about the show; some, you can think of as not actually that bad. Overall, being short and sweet isn’t so bad. Who knows? Maybe we’ll get more content as demand for certain character and stories could be fleshed out more. The “Entertainment District Arc’s” story and characters can be that much more amazingly epic, with more added depth. If Koyoharu Gotouge wants to expand more on these details, that would absolutely be great. Hey, the more content available, the more money you can make. If artistically, you aren’t driven to make more, maybe capitalism would help. This is just a prayer in my opinion. The “Entertainment District Arc” is still like a 98/100 for me!
Let me know what you guys think could have been better down below!