This episode provided an emotional but compelling buffer between the intense action of the previous battle and the upcoming finale.
We recap the Crunchyroll anime series Chainsaw Man season 1, episode 10, “Bruised & Battered,” which contains spoilers.
Episode 9 of Chainsaw Man was a crazy ride as viewers saw multiple characters die, come back to life and even reveal secret talents no one expected. Despite all the chaos seeming to calm down a bit by the end, there are still a few episodes left in season 1, which means we can’t let our guards down just yet. Luckily episode 10 provides fans with a much-needed break from all the death and struggle to show the team dealing with their grief and deciding how to get stronger. Whether or not this will help them against Katana Man and the Gun Devil will remain to be seen.
Chainsaw Man season 1, episode 10 recap
The episode opens with a news broadcast detailing the recent Katana Man incident and other information about Public Safety Division Four. The TV playing the news is located in the hospital room where Aki is recovering. Beside his bed sit Denji and Power snacking and reading magazines while Aki stares up at the ceiling, clearly in deep thought. It’s only when Denji and Power begin fighting beside him that Aki finally engages them to ask if anyone from Division 4 survived the fight.
Denji relays the few survivors, including Kobeni and Madoka, the latter of whom had already quit. It’s easy to tell that all of this news devastates Aki, but he does not make a scene and instead remains sad and reserved. Denji seems unsure of what to say, so he leaves Aki an apple before he and Power leave for a meeting with Makima.
After they leave, Aki retrieves his sword, unsheathing the tip. “How much time do I have left,” he asks, to which the Curse Devil replies, “Two years.” He goes to light a cigarette and is immediately hit with memories of Himeno, causing him to drop it before he finally breaks down into tears. Outside the door, Denji hears Aki crying and, at first, seems to judge him, but it soon dredges up Himeno memories of his own as he realizes that he has yet to cry given all that he’s been through lately. He wonders if he would cry for any of his coworkers if they passed, concluding he might be down if Makima died but would still be fine after three or days. It makes him think that he’s heartless in more ways than one before finally deciding not to dwell on these topics. As Denji and Power finally leave the hospital, Yutaro and Michiko enter Aki’s room. They tell him they are there from Kyoto to help coach Special Division 4.
In their meeting with Makima, she tells Power and Denji that she’s reasonably certain the enemy is after him. So, she plans to strengthen Division 4 by having them train with Kishibe, Himeno’s former master. Before he allows Makima to introduce him fully, however, Kishibe asks them a series of questions to gauge how they feel about their comrades dying and just what side they’re on. Power and Denji answer each question rather indifferently, making it clear they’re both truly in this for themselves. More than pleased with their answers, Kishibe tells them they passed his test and calls them a rare breed.
After having Makima leave, Kishibe starts the training immediately. He begins by hugging them and introducing himself fully before breaking their necks. As they lay unable to move, he explains that while they’re both physically the same as humans, as devils, they can heal with blood, which sets them apart. Denji tries to understand why Kishibe just did what he did. Since the Gun Devil seems to be after Denji’s heart, it’s up to him to make them as strong as he is. Until then, he tells them he will be hunting them.
Denji and Power think maybe Kishibe is crazy but engage him in battle anyway, thinking he’ll be easy. Power tosses Denji a blood hammer, and he charges toward Kishibe. In the blink of an eye, he’s already stabbed Denji several times before Denji can even get a hit on him. Power attempts to ambush him from behind, only to have her throat slit. As they both lay bleeding, Kishibe sees that they are both mostly, if not totally, immortal. He’ll be able to train them without fear of hurting them and really improve their skills.
In his hospital room, Aki tries to summon the Fox Devil, but it will not answer, likely for having abused its power. Yutaro notes that Aki can still use his Curse Devil at least, and Aki soon realizes what they are really here for. Yutaro and Michiko have come to provide job consultation to Special Division 4. They wonder why he has yet to quit before telling Aki that if he stays on, he’ll have to make contracts with even stronger devils in order to contribute. Considering the Gun Devil is still out there, Aki has no intention of quitting, so Yutaro and Michiko say they’ll bring his paperwork by tomorrow. As they’re walking out, another woman, whose face is unseen, steps in.
Kishibe, Power, and Denji train late into the night. They both seem worn out, and Denji wonders just how many times he was killed that day. Estimates from Power point to around 20 times, but she can’t be sure, as she was generally unconscious at those times. As they head home defeated, they try to devise a way to fix their situation. In the end, they decide that since they are not strong enough to defeat Kishibe, they will fight him using their wits instead.
The next day, Denji and Power wear glasses in an effort to look smarter as they plan to ambush Kishibe. Power throws a blood spear at him the moment he tries to open the door and misses. She repeatedly attacks him with blood spears but misses every time. While he’s distracted, Denji attempts to attack Kishibe, only to be kicked. Once they’re both incapacitated, Kishibe explains why they lost but applauds their efforts before leaving for the day. Just before he makes it down the hall, he turns and throws a knife into Denji’s skull, warning him never to trust anything a hunter says.
As they travel into the basement lock-up where Public Safety keeps the devils they’ve captured, Yutaro and Michiko explain that making a deal with a stronger devil also means a more demanding contract. As they walk the halls, Yutaro wonders if the lady who visited Aki in the hospital was his girlfriend. He reveals that it was actually Himeno’s younger sister. Instead of coming to scold him, as expected, but instead gave him letters from Himeno. In the letters, Himeno often wrote to her sister about Aki, specifically about trying to get him to quit with her.
Back in the basement, Yutaro stops in front of a door and tells Aki he is going to contract with the Future Devil, located inside that room. Two other devil hunters already have contracts with it, but at the cost of half their life or most of their senses. The episode ends with Aki walking into the cell and standing face to face with the Future Devil.
This episode had a good balance of emotional moments mixed in with quality action. It was also one of the funnier episodes of the season, with Power and Denji’s connection at the forefront of most of their scenes. It’s nice to see Denji forming these close relationships, but as viewers, we know better than to get too attached to any characters, as they could be gone any second. Still, episode 10 provided a good break from the gore and death, providing viewers a look at how different devil hunters deal with the grieving process. There are only two episodes left, and with Katana Man still out there, it’ll be interesting to see if he pops up again before the end of the season.
What did you think of Chainsaw Man season 1, episode 10? Comment below.
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