Is Denji Not The Best Character In The Chainsaw Man?
When it comes to “Chainsaw Man,” the titular character, Denji, often takes the spotlight as the main protagonist. But is he truly the best character in the series? As fans of this gore-infested, devil-filled anime know, there’s another character who might just steal the show. In this article, we’ll explore why Aki Hayakawa, the badass mentor and deuteragonist, may just be the most compelling figure in the world of Chainsaw Man.
Chainsaw Man’s Intriguing Plot
Before we delve into why Aki Hayakawa shines, let’s set the stage. “Chainsaw Man” introduces us to a world where bloodthirsty devils, manifestations of humanity’s deepest fears, lurk in secret among the public. To gain supernatural abilities, humans make binding contracts with these powerful devils, trading something valuable, whether it’s a body part, a sense, or even their lifespan. In the midst of this perilous world, the Public Safety Devil Hunters, a government agency, take on the task of protecting citizens from these death-threatening devils.
Denji, the central character, is a young man without a home or family who, after being brutally murdered by the Yakuza, strikes a deal with his pet-like devil, Pochita. This pact results in Denji’s resurrection, giving him the unique ability to transform his body parts into chainsaws. He joins the Tokyo Special Division 4, where he encounters an ensemble of extraordinary devil hunters, including the enigmatic Makima, the feisty Power, the mysterious Himeno, and, of course, his mentor, Aki Hayakawa.
Aki’s Lethal Devil Contracts
Aki Hayakawa’s character is defined by his exceptional devil contracts. At the outset of the series, we learn that Aki has already formed pacts with the Curse Devil and the Fox Devil. The Curse Devil equips Aki with a nail-like sword capable of dispatching any foe with just three stabs. However, every use of this sword chips away at Aki’s own lifespan. This contract not only underscores Aki’s courage but also showcases his unwavering dedication to his mission, even if it means his life is on the line.
In episode 4, aptly titled “Rescue,” we witness the awe-inspiring power of Aki’s contract with the Fox Devil. By offering a piece of his own body, Aki can summon the Fox Devil’s teleportation ability by forming his hand in the shape of a fox head and uttering the word “Kon.” The Fox Devil then appears and can either bite or swallow the enemy, as demonstrated in the dramatic confrontation with the Leech Devil. This captivating display of power is sure to captivate new viewers, serving as a compelling reason to continue watching the series.
Despite the incredible abilities granted by his contracts, Aki is not without challenges. In a face-off with the Katana Man, a Devil-human hybrid, he overuses the Fox Devil’s power, resulting in a falling-out with Kon and the loss of his summoning abilities. However, Aki’s character remains undaunted as he strikes a new contract with the Future Devil, allowing him to see into the future for a brief few seconds. This newfound power gives Aki a remarkable advantage in combat, making him nearly unbeatable in hand-to-hand battles.
Aki’s Heart-Wrenching Backstory
One of the most compelling aspects of Aki Hayakawa’s character is his heart-wrenching backstory, which serves as the emotional backbone of “Chainsaw Man.” In the first season, the primary objective of the Public Safety agency is to eliminate the Gun Devil, the archenemy of Aki. We are granted a glimpse into Aki’s past during a snowy winter day. Aki and his sickly younger brother engage in a snowball fight, but a routine trip inside to fetch gloves turns into a devastating nightmare. In a matter of seconds, their home is obliterated, and Aki learns that his family is one of the 1.2 million lives affected by the Gun Devil’s destructive power in a five-minute rampage.
This scene is a defining moment that explains Aki’s relentless determination to exact revenge on the Gun Devil and protect innocent lives. His childhood trauma propelled him into adulthood at an alarming pace, shaping him into a hero who is both ruthlessly determined and profoundly empathetic. Aki’s tragic past adds depth to the series and keeps the audience eagerly anticipating his next move in the quest to vanquish the Gun Devil.
While Denji may be the face of “Chainsaw Man,” it’s clear that Aki Hayakawa is a character who deserves equal recognition and admiration. His lethal devil contracts, including the Curse Devil and the Fox Devil, demonstrate his commitment to the cause and his willingness to make sacrifices. Aki’s tragic backstory serves as the emotional foundation of the series, making him a hero who resonates with viewers on a profound level.
So, is Denji not the best character in “Chainsaw Man”? While Denji has his own charm and appeal, Aki Hayakawa’s depth, development, and emotional journey make him a strong contender for the title of the series’ best character. Chainsaw Man enthusiasts and newcomers alike can appreciate the complexity of Aki’s character, and his presence adds a rich layer of depth to this thrilling and gory world.
In a world filled with relentless devils and extraordinary powers, it’s Aki Hayakawa who stands out as a character worth celebrating and a testament to the depth of storytelling in “Chainsaw Man.”