Demon Slayer: To The Hashira Training Review – Things are Heating Up

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Thomas Richards
| March 3, 2024
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A new season of Demon Slayer is on the horizon, so you know what that means: time for another theatrical outing for the blockbuster series! Demon Slayer has returned to cinemas with its latest cinematic instalment titled Demon Slayer: To the Hashira Training. Similar to the To The Swordsmith Village film they released previously, this is a compilation film combining the end of Season 3 and the start of Season 4. But is it worth the time and money to see a film where half the runtime is something you’ve already seen before? I think so, and I’m going to tell you why.

Last Time, on Demon Slayer

Last time, on Demon Slayer. (©Koyoharu Gotoge / SHUEISHA, Aniplex, ufotable)

The film’s first half is the last episode of The Swordsmith Village arc (Season 3), where the fight between Tanjiro (Zach Aguilar, Natsuki Hanae) and Upper Moon 4 comes to a close. There aren’t any new scenes or anything of the sort, but seeing this fight on the big screen was a marvel to behold. The animation looked even better on the big screen, especially the fire. I also think that seeing some of the more emotional moments in a cinema enhanced them, making you feel those feelings even harder than when you first saw them. At the end of the day, this was just a repeat of the content we’d seen before, but I still really enjoyed seeing it on the big screen. It also led nicely into the new stuff, which is the main reason you go to see these compilation films.

Time to Train

That’s ma boi! (©Koyoharu Gotoge / SHUEISHA, Aniplex, ufotable)

Now we get to the main reason why most people went to see this film: the first episode of The Hashira Training arc (Season 4). This 40-odd-minute episode has great action and intriguing mysteries and even spends more time on characters we haven’t seen much of in recent seasons. I loved seeing Sanemi (Kaiji Tang, Tomokazu Seki) go crazy on some demons, and I’m so excited to see what he does now that he gets screen time. Obanai (Erik Scott Kimerer, Kenichi Suzumura) also gets some more screen time after appearing at the end of Season 2 for like, a minute. This episode also expertly set the tone for the next season with the fun training arc vibes while hinting at something that will most definitely hit you in the feels. The reveal that Tengen (Ray Chase, Katsuyuki Konishi) is also back this season made me very happy (he’s one of my favs). And that new opening song is a certified banger! My First Story has knocked it out of the park, and I can’t wait to listen to it on repeat when the full version drops (and every week of the new season).

Learning From Mistakes

She’s just happy to be alive. (©Koyoharu Gotoge / SHUEISHA, Aniplex, ufotable)

My biggest issue with the last theatrical outing (which you can read about here) was that they included the opening and ending for each episode. While I should’ve expected it, it would’ve made it feel more like a film had they edited them out. I’m happy to say they’ve learned their lesson this time, as the only opening is at the end (and it still slaps). The recap montage of the previous seasons at the beginning is helpful, especially if it’s been a hot minute since you watched them. And with the exception of a very brief logo in the middle to signal the beginning of the new stuff, there were no interruptions. This went a long way to make this feel as close to a film as possible, which I enjoyed. While I still hold out hope for another proper film from this series, if they can keep making these compilation films like this, I won’t be mad seeing them on the big screen.

That’s my other boi! (©Koyoharu Gotoge / SHUEISHA, Aniplex, ufotable)

Demon Slayer: To The Hashira Training was a fun ride from beginning to end. I loved being able to experience the end of Season 3 on the big screen in all its glory. I was also excited to get a first look at the new season (including my bois Sanemi and Tengen). Season 4 can’t come soon enough because I need more, and I need it NOW! For more Demon Slayer and anime content, keep it locked to Couch Soup to feed your hungry nerd soul.

You can check out the trailer for the film below.

Did you see the Demon Slayer: To The Hashira Training? What did you think? Who’s your favourite Hashira? Let us know in the comments where we can talk all things Demon Slayer.

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