Episode 4 of Chainsaw Man, in my opinion, was quite distinct from the three preceding it. It included wholly new scenes that serve as lovely setups for subsequent plot elements as well as portraying a simple morning life of a certain pointy-haired person, in contrast to the mayhem that ensues.
Even though the episode is titled “rescue” where the source material focused on the action, the Anime staff decided to give some attention to Aki and Power, specifically to their mindsets.
Both presume that it is foolish for Devils & humans to grow affectionate over the other. However, Denji contrasts this view by having the notion that “I don’t mind establishing a bond with them, as long as it aids in gratifying my desire”
He isn’t restricted by pre-conceived notions of one side or the other. He has the intelligence of a human but the soul of a devil, so he has no compunction about resorting to the lowest of means to accomplish his goals.
Is that bad though?
Well, for Aki and Power, yes. The former is of the opinion that the Chainsaw Man has no sense of morality. What’s intriguing, though, is that Aki doesn’t appear to realize that he, too, has a self-centered objective (to exact vengeance), which he prioritizes above all else.
In a similar fashion, Power is hypocritical to say it’s foolish for Denji to have such a weak objective where in fact, the entire point of confronting the Bat and Leech Devils is just to save a cat. To her, the cat is more significant than the man trapped in his car or the massive amount of property that was destroyed.
All 3 of them fundamentally live polished animal lives with selfish goals in mind, with Aki & Power deluding themselves under the flag of “social justice” with a false sense of superiority.
All three of them are essentially living polished animals lives with selfish ambitions; but, while living under the banner of “social justice,” Aki and Power are fooling themselves into a false sense of superiority.
Tatsuki Fujimoto was particular in emphasizing these elements within his story and the Anime does a fair job in portraying those intentions, as he himself shared through his live tweets.
He pointed out the things he loved about it, including the coloring and the shadow effects. But what I liked the most is the extra scenes which were not part of the source material.
The conversation Makima had with Aki in her office was a neat little addition, as it foreshadows a significant change in Aki’s feelings. He refuses to accept that people can influence him but the beauty lies in the next scene where he lights up a cigarette, signaling a certain flashback scene with Himeno…
That conversation is also important to give context to Makima’s true plan as they’re set in motion from that very scene.
As a point of comparison, the appearance of the Fox Demon in the Anime is a substantial improvement over that in the Manga. While Denji floats helplessly in slow motion, the impact frames sent shivers up my spine as the Demon jumped in for a bite at the Leech Demon. The Animation was subtle but powerful.
Did I mention how the ending theme song and its animation were tailored made for Power? 10/10 for that amazing sight for sore eyes
However, I cannot say the same for a couple of scenes during the action sequence.
One of the major problems I found is the sluggish movement of the character’s bodies. Denji’s arm movements and body language while venting about the others looking down upon his dreams seemed disjointed. It’s as if a couple of frames were skipped. A similar sluggish-ness was present when the Leech Devil was using its tentacles to attack Denji.
The lack of visible feelings at pivotal moments is another problem. One example is Power’s lack of concern when she tells Denji to take Meowy and run. In the Manga, visible worry could be seen in her eyes, accompanied by a beading of sweat. On the other hand, the Anime rendered her features expressionless and plastic.
Another example is Denji not smiling in the adaptation while Power describes him as demoniac while in the Manga, he did. If I was an Anime-only watcher, I’d be confused to why Power called him a demon before he actually started laughing like one. It seemed out of correlation.
Perhaps you may think I’m just picking holes in an otherwise perfect episode, but these are moments that had a significant impact on me in the Manga and I was unhappy to see with these inaccuracies in the adaptation. I’m crossing my fingers that upcoming episodes will do better there.
Chainsaw Man Episode 4 rating: 7.5/10
So what do you think of Chainsaw Man Anime Episode 4? Let me know in the comments below!
CHAINSAW MAN © 2018 by Tatsuki Fujimoto/SHUEISHA Inc.