October 11 is my best friend’s birthday, and now there’ll be another reason to celebrate! That day marks the air date of Chainsaw Man Episode 1, and it’s an instant recommend. What are my thoughts on this debut? Find out below! (In interest of those not reading the manga, I won’t be doing spoilers or related analysis here until the end.)
What is Chainsaw Man?
I’m not going to waste any time explaining what Chainsaw Man is in this piece. If you want my summary and thoughts on the manga, check out my earlier column. I’ll wait, don’t worry!
Back yet? Awesome!
The sights and sounds of Chainsaw Man Episode 1
But what I WILL talk about is how closely the manga adheres to its adaptation. It does so unsurprisingly well! I really love how Fujimoto’s characters translated to an animated medium, and Studio MAPPA did an excellent job with it. Honestly, with their experience from Attack on Titan, I was expecting nothing less. I really loved how slow and deliberate the action scenes were when animating Denji and his carnage. It’s a 2D/3D hybrid style that I’ve fallen in love with since Beastars, and it looks beautiful. The series doesn’t skimp on the blood and gore with its action, and it’s displayed quite well here.
Additionally, I was surprised with how much I loved Denji’s voice actor here. He has the range of an innocent kid down on his luck to a sociopathic murderer. While we don’t get a lot here, Makima’s voice actress nails her character perfectly. For sake of spoilers, I’m not going to say why exactly this is, but for anime only readers, it’s amazing. (That said, Makima’s dub actress also does a great job with a loving monotone which again, spoilers). I legitimately can’t wait to hear Aki and Power when they’re introduced later in the show.
However, we at least get to see our main trio in the opening of the show, which is kinetically amazing. It’s so high-energy and wants nothing but to hit you with action scene after action scene. Of course, the series isn’t all fun and games, but at least it sets the tone for the show. I’m intrigued on the unique ending songs and how they will change nearly every episode. This episode’s ending was a somber introduction on what to expect coming soon. I hope each ending will symbolize where we are in the story.
The big question: Where to end the season?
The biggest issue we love to speculate is how much of the manga the Chainsaw Man anime will cover. I have some hope that the series will take its time and use two seasons, so I could see this season finishing up before the Bomb Devil arc. (This is nearly 40 chapters out of the 97 in Part 1). After all, the ending to that is a MASSIVE turning point in the series. Leaving it at that cliffhanger would cause so much interest in season two. We already have Denji’s mental door pop up in this first episode, so I can see us heading to that reintroduction by end of the season.
In short? Chainsaw Man Episode 1 rocks!
There’s really not much I can say at this point if I haven’t convinced you already: Go watch Chainsaw Man! Go read Chainsaw Man! Get a Pochita plushie if they’re available! It’s one of the best shonen series in recent history, and I’m glad we’re getting so much Chainsaw Man love.