Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba – Anime Preview
Synopsis: It is the Taisho Period in Japan. Tanjiro, a kindhearted boy who sells charcoal for a living, finds his family slaughtered by a demon. To make matters worse, his younger sister Nezuko, the sole survivor, has been transformed into a demon herself. Though devastated by this grim reality, Tanjiro resolves to become a “demon slayer” so that he can turn his sister back into a human, and kill the demon that massacred his family.(Official Crunchyroll Synopsis)
1st Episode Review (Warning: Minor Spoilers to Follow):
Tom: Kimetsu no Yaiba starts strong, with half the episode moving along at a near perfect pace. Things aren’t over explained, the atmosphere is great, and everything comes together quite nicely. But once the action gets going things become bogged down with overwritten dialogue, poor pacing, and an unwillingness to take this overtly dark tale towards its natural conclusion.
Linny: Kimetsu no Yaiba initially feels like a solid pick for anyone seeking a darker Shonen tale, especially one with just a little extra edge seeing as it features our hero returning to witness his blood splattered home and the ravaged corpses of his entire family. But as the episode continues, Kimetsu no Yaiba srtarts to really hammer its plot points through obvious, over explained and drawn out inner monologues and even has its characters reminiscing about events that literally happened barely a minute ago. Long time Shonen fans will also start to notice predictable beats as the story continues, checking off staple notes such as the hero losing his entire family, passionately believing in the inherent goodness of someone they love despite all evidence initially pointing to the contrary, etc. All of these together give the vibe that maybe Yaiba is for a younger crowd, or one that doesn’t mind in your face story telling that spells out obvious developments for you in fear that you either missed it or couldn’t grasp the significance of it on your own.
Tom: Kimetsu no Yaiba seems steeped in the atmosphere of a darker story aimed at an older audience. But towards the end of this first episode the gut-wrenching, grim tragedy gets pulled back on, giving that classic light of hope consistently found in media aimed at teens. This would be acceptable if the writing was tighter. The big action sequence suffers from way too much stop and go, with character’s inner thoughts stretching out events, or hefty monologues getting in the way of a sequence that could’ve been so much more powerful with less dialogue. These issues aren’t crushing, but they do keep Yaiba from hitting real high notes. Being unfamiliar with the manga myself I don’t know how the series evolves over time, but if it can just tighten up its writing, and allow events to speak for themselves, it could evolve into a better and stronger series. As it stands now it’s a decent watch, but doesn’t feel like a must-see title.
Linny: Kimetsu no Yaiba employs a lot of CGI to depict its background and while the CGI isn’t ugly, it does stand out and clash with the characters, heightening its likeliness to be an eyesore or an easy distraction for some. After all is said and done, I still believe the series is a decent pick for the average Shonen fan or anyone who might enjoy an action story that has a little darkness but remains approachable for most audiences. Is it groundbreaking? No. But it hits all the right notes to appeal to an action loving anime fan seeking a good, classic tale of revenge.