「柱になるんじゃないのか!」 (Hashira ni Narun ja Nai no ka!)
“Aren`t You Going to Become a Hashira?”
The latest installment of Kimetsu no Yaiba ‘s Swordsmith arc gives us further insight on Genya, his relationship with his brother, and his current hassles with Hantengu. But in the process of having to contend with wanting to live up to his dreams of becoming a Hashira, he also has to come to terms with whether he should still be adverse to Tanjiro.
Compared to his serious, no-nonsense brother Sanemi, what makes Genya fascinating is how he wears his emotions on his sleeve. While Sanemi is closed-off and intimidating because of his life experiences growing up, Genya’s experiences have made him more irritable and insecure about whether he’s catching up with the others.
His dreams of being a Hashira appears to stem from his worries that his brother wouldn’t accept him fighting by his side and getting full revenge on demons for the death of their mother and siblings. On the same coin, he feels immensely guilty for blaming Sanemi for their mother’s death as a gut-reaction to the terror he had felt. Even though his brother had to close off more of his reaction to seeing his siblings get slaughtered, Sanemi having the resolve to kill the demon possessing their mother took the kind of emotional repression that couldn’t come from someone as compassionate as Genya.
So it makes sense that this arc is dedicated to having Tanjiro slowly win the hearts and minds of the Hashira’s more abrasive rookies. While Tokito warmed up to Tanjiro very quickly, his strategy with Genya is gonna need more reinforcement since he’s often left baffled by Tanjiro’s kindness.
Genya’s placed in an awkward position where he assumes Tanjiro is just another aspiring Hashira like him who is aiming to gain notoriety above him. Little does he know that Tanjiro is a cinnamon roll who lights up and starts doting on Genya when he mentions wanting to be Hashira first.
It’s kinda profound how, rather than being angry or fussy, Tanjiro is the kind of protagonist to see someone’s earnest efforts and get ecstatic enough about their ambitions that they completely tune out any of their animosity, or see it as a challenge to get on his good side. In a way, Genya relying more on Tanjiro is a way for him to realize the hidden wavelength that the two share as young aspiring swordsmen.
Likewise, it helps that Tanjiro’s background mirrors Genya’s as he also lost most of his family to a demon attack. They also share the distinction of having one sibling who survived, and placing all of their efforts into making sure they are able to protect them. The only issue would be that, rather than needing to find a cure for his sibling’s demonic possession, Genya has to live up to Sanemi’s expectations for him to make something of himself and get on his level.
The tough love that Sanemi has for Genya, combined with the guilt from blaming Sanemi for their mother’s death, has forced Genya to feel responsible for catching up to Sanemi. Luckily, Tanjiro is keen on helping Genya get into the good graces of his superiors by helping him take down enough powerful demons to be seen as a formidable Hashira.
Man, it’s so awesome seeing Nezuko assisting other Demon Slayers. Also, Nezuko’s cute, not phased by anything attitude is hilarious.
Does anyone think Muichirou will die this season?