Spoiler Free Summary: Demon Slayer Volume 20 by Koyoharu Gotouge is the twentieth volume in the Demon Slayer manga. The battle with Kokushibo, the number one upper rank demon, has left Tokito and Genya critically injured, Himejima and Sanemi have shown up to help with the fight, but even then, Kokushibo seems too strong. Can one of the Hashira unlock a power capable of snatching victory from the claws of defeat?
Character: We do get to learn more about the Hashira in their battle. The growth is nice amid the action sequences. We don’t get overly deep, but we still clearly see their motivating moments. The way Gotogue weaves content and character into fights without dragging a story down is masterful, and this volume probably best illustration of that mastery.
Exposition: Similar to the last volume (and the remaining three), the bulk of the exposition is provided via dialogue. That’s still dialogue (if half-hidden). However, this technique reduces drag that might otherwise be caused by flashbacks or dialogue panels.
Worldbuilding: There’s not much in the way of wolrdbuilding here. There are a few tidbits that cause the typical power increase that comes whenever characters reveal new abilities, but that’s something one should expect (if not anticipate). Still, this volumes are more about action sequences than story content.
Dialogue: There’s a touching moment here delivered by dialogue that really makes this volume powerful. The majority of it is the same as always. I just want to be clear, these few lines of dialect are some of the most powerful in the whole series, and it connects two lesser characters in a powerful way.
Description: This fight is really just more artistic awesomeness at heart. The artwork really brings out the beauty of the fight scenes, and I can’t wait to see it animated.
Overall: This volume is a better blend of action and character growth, and that makes it one of the better volumes in the series (which is saying something). This fight started out as something that frustrated me. To think the number one upper rank demon is an undercard is discouraging, but then I saw the fight play out and I realize it sets the stage for the bigger fight to come.
Spoiler Free Summary: Demon Slayer Volume 19 by Koyoharu Gotouge is the nineteenth volume in the Demon Slayer manga. Kanao must take over the fight against Doma even after witnessing something horrible. Iguro and Kanroji have to take on the upper rank who’s shifting the rooms of Infinity Castle. Tokito, Sanemi and Genya find themselves against the number one upper rank demon, who recognizes Tokito.
Character: As the fighting grows more intense, we see a bit less character development and more what I would call character fulfillment, in which characters are starting to come into their own in a satisfying, climactic way. However, these secrets unfold during the fights. It makes the fights more satisfying. The brothers however (wind Hashira and his brother) have a wonderful moment of growth.
Exposition: The exposition we get in this volume is more from dialogue, where we get some reveals that I admit are less satisfying and surprising because they overdid the setup in previous issues. However, while not as rewarding as they could have been, it doesn’t drag the pace down.
Worldbuilding: We actually get several little details that advance the magic system of this world. They don’t come in the form of one epic move. Instead they come in small bites that give the fights pleasant little bursts of awesomeness.
Dialogue: As mentioned above, there is some pretty obvious expositional dialogue, but it’s not distracting. Most of the other dialogue is the usual “I’ll beat you yet, Gadget!”
Description: I’ve been super excited to see the number one upper rank in action, and the volume doesn’t disappoint. The way these powers and abilities are illustrated just look awesome.
Overall: So while this volume as a whole may not be as satisfying in the sense of plot reveal and character growth, it makes up for it by being so full of incredible action and drama. That’s not to say that there isn’t some great emotional moments either. For me though, this volume is all about cool fight scenes.
Spoiler Free Summary: Demon Slayer Volume 14 by Koyoharu Gotouge is the fourteenth volume in the Demon Slayer manga. Kizuki members Hantengu and Gyokko are attacking the swordsmiths. Each has an ability that tests their members. Are they more than our heroes can handle?
Character: This volume is battle oriented. We do get to know more about Tokito and his past, and that’s cool, but if you’re not in love with the main cast at this point, you’re probably not interested in this volume no matter what I say. The author knows this. Sure, we get a bit more (and we always will) because Gotouge is a master, but these volumes at this point are more about rooting for characters we’ve already come to love than giving us stories to make us love them.
Exposition: I don’t honestly remember much exposition in this volume to begin with. The story is moving along, so there’s just no real need for any explination.
Worldbuilding: While there’s a touch of character development in this volume, I wouldn’t say the worldbuilding had much. This is much more about sitting back and enjoying the fight to see if (or how) the heroes win.
Dialogue: This actually doesn’t have the 1980s cartoon banter the other volumes have (either that, or I’ve gotten used to it). Sure, there’s some banter, and it may be a bit more on the cheesy side, but I’d say this is an improvement on what has been the trend.
Description: There’s really not much more to say about the art in this volume. A few issues back, we had a new scene (setting/location) to fawn over, and we’ll get more, but for now, it’s just well-illustrated fight scenes.
Overall: Like the last few volumes, I’ve read this one twice. I tend to re-read one right after my wife so I know what I’m allowed to talk about and what I’m not allowed to talk about. This battle has a lot of drama and great peak moments. I think this is where we see the heroes come into their own. This volume continues the freight train that is the last third of the series.