I don’t know what it is with Gyutaro, but I just don’t like looking at him. It may be his design, but I also think it’s his voice that bugs me lol. It’s very gross so kudos to his seiyuu for doing such a great job!
So this was a slower episode for a good chunk. It was mostly the characters doing a lot of talking back and forth with minimal scene changes, so at points it did feel like it dragged on for a bit. I wouldn’t say it was boring, but it could have been more exciting. It wasn’t until near the end when we got into lots of dynamic and beautifully animated fight scenes, and with two fights happening at once, it makes things a lot more intense. And a special shoutout to Hinatsuru who carried around that giant kunai cannon even though she was still affected by the poison. Imagine that she carried that giant thing to the fight, climbed the roof of that building with it, just for that surprise attack. That’s pretty amazing.
We got a very short look into Tengen’s past during the first half. Being a shinobi, I imagined that his life probably would not have been easy but with his seven siblings all dying by the time he turned 15 is a huge deal. Even worse when his father’s demeanor changed in fear of their clan’s numbers dwindling. Because of that he had turned into a much more harsh person, training them to the bone. Tengen’s brother and only surviving sibling ended up turning out the same way and Tengen wanted nothing to do with that and so he left. From the OP visuals, we could see that Tengen has some sort of close relationship with the Master, and I think him calling him a remarkable child was just it. Leaving your own clan, your own family, behind is a hard thing for anyone to do. Tengen probably felt a lot of guilt and there’s probably way more events that we still don’t know about yet, so for him to hear that after all that he’s still remarkable probably affected him so much. Those words were enough to make him believe that he really did make the best decision for his life, in order to live his own life with pride and to protect others.
And interestingly, it looks like Tengen really looked up to Rengoku as well. I’m so upset that we never got to see their relationship, or any of the hashira really. We don’t really know any of them and how their relationships are with each other, which is something I will always complain about really. While Tengen boasts about his flashy ways and displays that confidence, he’s still human and has his own worries. He has moments of doubt, and the preview/end credit scene really shows that as he questions, specifically to Rengoku, what he should do. Tengen has a big personality too and is sort of similar to Rengoku but I think he just looked up to him a lot. His “don’t underestimate humans” speech to Gyutaro was very similar to Rengoku’s, and even Tanjiro was able to see Rengoku in him at that moment. I do hope that at some point we could see a little more on that friendship between the two, just because I would love to see it. Again, even if Rengoku isn’t here anymore, he still affects others and he did affect others while he was alive. We know that the other hashira all got along and really liked Rengoku, but it’s nice to actually be able to see how much they liked him. It warms my heart.
The fights start breaking out in the end with Tengen taking on Gyutaro with Tanjiro as support, amazingly. I don’t know how he’s still standing. And Inosuke and Zenitsu take on an even stronger Daki. I do love that even in his sleepy state, Zenitsu is still sort of conscious enough to remember what Daki did to that little girl. It’s definitely personal. Things are really heating up, and the fight animation has been absolutely mesmerizing so I can’t wait to see the fight continue next time.