Demon Slayer Episode 19

Demon Slayer Episode 19

Hinokami

Let’s get some things out of the way before the true episode review begins. First of all, I believe I’ve been writing Demon Blood Art for the past bunch of episode reviews, but it’s actually called Blood Demon Art. I think my version was better, but from here on out I’ll try to write it correctly.

Second, this was probably the best episode of the entire season across all anime thus far, and I’m not sure if anything is going to top it. It had a good story, interesting developments, and, of course, intense and well-animated action. If I were to rate this episode alone, it would be a 10/10.

Finally, I’ll be ignoring Zenitsu and Inosuke for the rest of this review. Not much really happens with either one of them other than the fact that they were both saved by stronger demon slayers. I would like to discuss the butterfly demon slayer, whatever her name is, in a future review though.

So with all that said, this review is going to specifically focus on Tanjirou, Nezuko (who finally made a reappearance), and the Spider Silk Demon as I’ve named him.

First Demon Moon

You may recall that in my previous episode review I mentioned that the Spider Silk Demon seemed to be the one truly calling the shots for this family of demons. There’s a father, mother, older brother, and older sister, and yet the youngest member of the clan strikes fear into all of them.

Well, it was finally revealed that my assumption is correct. The Spider Silk Demon is the ringleader and a member of the Twelve Demon Moons. That’s right, the Tarantula Demon isn’t one of the Twelve Demon Moons, the Spider Silk Demon is instead.

This makes a lot of sense. I had mentioned how I didn’t think the Tarantula Demon was actually strong enough to be one of the Twelve Demon Moons, and now we know why. Also, the reason the Female Spider Demon was afraid of the Tarantula Demon is purely because of his violence towards her, not because he was connected to Kibutsuji.

Spider Silk Demon of the Twelve Demon Moons from the anime series Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba
Spider Silk Demon of the Twelve Demon Moons

We also learned that the silk the Spider Silk Demon uses to fight is his Blood Demon Art. I figured a true member of the Twelve Demon Moons would have one, so again, this makes sense. Not only is his silk strong enough to break Tanjirou’s sword, but his skin is even stronger.

The Spider Silk Demon can also further power up his silk by imbuing it with his blood. This seems to be his true Blood Demon Art. As far as I can tell, this just makes it so he can control more strands of silk at once and also makes them even stronger than before.

The Spider Demon Clan

So what’s the deal with the spider demon clan? Why is the youngest child the leader of the family?

It appears that the spider demon clan actually aren’t related by blood. Or, maybe they are, but either way that isn’t the point. The point is that the Spider Silk Demon has a very particular view of how a family should behave.

He believes that the parents should protect the children, and the older siblings should protect the younger sibling. This is why he’s so strict about everyone properly fulfilling their roles. We even see him attack his older sister — who’s still alive by the way — when she attempts to defy him.

Nezuko captured by the Spider Silk Demon from the anime series Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba
Nezuko captured by the Spider Silk Demon

While it’s possible that all the members of the spider demon family are truly related by blood, it’s unclear whether or not this is the case. On one hand, that would explain why they’re all spider demons, but on the other hand, it seems like the role is more important than the blood relation to the Spider Silk Demon.

After all, he decides to kidnap Nezuko and make her a member of his family after he sees how she selflessly throws herself in front of Tanjirou to block an oncoming attack. Perhaps he kidnapped all of his “family” members in a similar way and they’re simply his hostages.

Demon Ranks Revisited

I think we also need to revisit the different ranks of demons briefly because we were given some new information in this episode. Previously we knew of four “ranks” of demons. The top rank includes only one demon, Kibutsuji himself, and the bottom rank is all the “unranked” demons.

The two middle ranks are what really matter. Just below Kibutsuji we have the Twelve Demon Moons, of which the Spider Silk Demon is a member. And below them are the Six Lower Moons, of which the Taiko Drum Demon was a member.

However, the Twelve Demon Moons themselves seem to be split into multiple ranks as well. We know that the Six Lower Moons are beneath the Twelve Demon Moons, but the Spider Silk Demon’s eye says (下五) “Lower Five.”

Does this mean that there’s an “Upper Seven” to round out the Twelve Demon Moons? That’s not clear just yet, but what is clear is that the demon ranks are a lot more complex than I previously thought. From what we know so far, the ranks look something like this:

  • Muzan Kibutsuji
  • Twelve Demon Moons
    • ???
    • Lower Five
  • Lower Six Moons
  • Unranked demons

Hinokami Kagura

Alright, so far I’ve mainly discussed the Spider Silk Demon, so let’s move on to Tanjirou and one of the major developments in the episode. Throughout the series we’ve seen Tanjirou exclusively use the Water Breathing Technique, but that changes today.

Now he’s added a new technique to his arsenal, the Hinokami Kagura, or as I’ll refer to it from here on out, the Fire Breathing Technique. Tanjirou was never directly taught this technique, but it’s something he picked up from watching his father when he was still alive.

Apparently the Kamado family worships some sort of fire deity known as Hinokami. So it’s fair to say that this is Tanjirou’s true technique. The Water Breathing Technique is merely something he adopted from Sakonji Urokodaki, not his own technique.

Hinokami Kagura and Exploding Blood combined from the anime series Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba
Hinokami Kagura and Exploding Blood combined

My main question now is whether Tanjirou will replace the Water Breathing Technique with the Fire Breathing Technique from here on out. I’m assuming he won’t since each breathing technique seems to have strengths and weaknesses, but at the same time we don’t know how it differs from the Water Breathing Technique yet.

Perhaps it’s like a stronger version of the Water Breathing Technique which takes up more of his strength. If this is the case, then we might see him only rely on it when absolutely necessary because he’ll be left defenseless afterwards.

I’d like for there to be some trade-off between using these two techniques. If it’s just that the Fire Breathing Technique is stronger, then it makes the Water Breathing Technique obsolete.

Blood Demon Art: Exploding Blood

But Tanjirou isn’t the only one who gained a new ability in this week’s episode. Nezuko finally awakened her Blood Demon Art, Exploding Blood. If you’re familiar with Naruto, then this is very similar to the abilities the Ketsuryūgan grants its users.

It’s unclear whether or not Nezuko can create human, or demon, bombs like the Ketsuryūgan can, but we do know that if there’s any blood outside the body she can make it explode. And, thanks to her demon regeneration, she can just cut herself, fling exploding blood at an opponent, and heal off the damage.

The first time she uses this ability is with her own blood to destroy the spider silk binding her, but the second time it’s with the Spider Silk Demon’s blood, implying she can blow up anyone’s blood. That’s a pretty strong ability to have, but I actually really like it for Nezuko.

First of all, this is the sort of ability which we would normally see an antagonist have, not one of our heroes. So that alone makes it interesting in my book. By comparison, Tanjirou’s Fire Breathing Technique is pretty boring.

However, there’s a second reason I like this ability for Nezuko. Explosions are linked to fire, and as I’ve already explained, the Kamado family worships some sort of fire deity. So while this may seem like a random ability at first glance, it’s actually tied into her family.

Would Tanjirou also have a fire-based Blood Demon Art if he were turned into a demon?

Conclusion

What did you think of this week’s episode of Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba? Was it the best episode of the season across all anime like I said? What are your thoughts on the demon ranks? And, what other breathing techniques or Blood Demon Arts would you like to see? Let me know in the comments.

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My review of the next episode is available here.

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