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Cruelty (残酷 "Zankoku") is the first episode of the anime Kimetsu no Yaiba (Demon Slayer).


nezuko human

Nezuko in her human form


Synopsis of Episode 1 of Demon Slayer (Kimetsu no Yaiba)

This is the Taisho period. Tanjiro Kamado leads a modest but happy life in the mountains with his family. One day, while returning from selling charcoal in town, he discovers his family massacred in pools of blood after a demon attack. Tanjiro rushes down the snow-covered mountain with the only survivor, his sister Nezuko, on his back. But along the way, Nezuko suddenly growls, turning against Tanjiro.


Recap of Episode 1 of Demon Slayer (Kimetsu no Yaiba)

Big brother Tanjiro

Tanjiro Kamado, a young boy with a highly developed sense of smell, leaves his family in their mountain home and moves to a nearby town to sell charcoal. His family has had financial difficulties since the death of their father, but they are happy nevertheless. When Tanjiro arrives in town, they welcome him and do small tasks to help the inhabitants. By the time he has sold all the charcoal, it is already dark.

Tanjiro happy

Shigeru and Hanako reassured by Tanjiro who goes to fetch coal


On his way home, Saburo, an elderly man who has lost his family, severely orders Tanjiro to spend the night in his house. He warns Tanjiro never to travel at night, as human-eating demons are roaming the country.


Nezuko, the survivor

When Tanjiro returns home the next morning, he smells blood and discovers that his entire family has been slaughtered. He discovers that his younger sister, Nezuko, is still warm to the touch and he tries to take her to the city for medical attention. Tanjiro slips and falls back into the snow, but when he tries to carry Nezuko again, she turns into a demon and attacks him.

Tanjiro family

Tanjiro's family slaughtered by a demon


Demon Slayer Giyu Tomioka

As Tanjiro tries to get rid of her, a demon slayer, whose name will later turn out to be Giyu Tomioka, arrives and tries to decapitate Nezuko. Tanjiro who still believes that his sister is human push her out of the way. He pleads then to Giyu that Nezuko would never hurt anyone and that there was an unknown smell in his house that could have been the real demon that killed his family. However, Giyu rejects his apology and explains that Nezuko had turned into a demon after her wounds were contaminated with demon blood and that she is a hungry demon now that will eat on humans. Tanjiro begs Giyu to spare her life explaining that he will find a solution to heal Nezuko, but this makes Giyu even angrier and he reprimands Tanjiro for his weak behavior and determination.


Giyu first apparitionFirst apparition of Giyu


Saving Nezuko

Giyu stabs Nezuko, causing Tanjiro to act. He does his best to attack him, but he ends up losing consciousness. When she sees Tanjiro lying unconscious at his feet, Nezuko escapes from Giyu's grasp and runs towards him. Giyu looks at him in despair because he thinks she's going to eat him, but he's amazed to see that Nezuko is protecting his brother from him. Although Nezuko keeps attacking Giyu, he's still amazed by her strange behavior and ends up hitting her instead of killing her.

Nezuko protects Tanjiro

Demon Nezuko protects Tanjiro


The beginning of the adventures of Tanjiro and Nezuko

Tanjiro dreams that his family will apologize for leaving him and that his mother will give him custody of Nezuko. When Tanjiro wakes up from his dream, Nezuko is returned to him and Giyu tells him to see a man named Sakonji Urokodaki at the foot of Mount Sagiri. He asks Tanjiro to say that he is the one who sent them, and warns him to make sure that Nezuko is never exposed to sunlight before he disappears. The brothers and sisters return home to bury the rest of the Kamado family and leave hand in hand on their journey.

Continue reading the adventures of Tanjiro Kamado at Demon Slayer Episode 2


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