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FEATURE: Aki’s Morning Routine is One of My Favorite Chainsaw Man Moments So Far

Aki in Chainsaw Man


NOTE: The following article contains spoilers for the fourth episode of the Chainsaw Man anime.


Chainsaw Man has settled into my Tuesday evening schedule. After work, I make myself comfortable in the living room and tune in to see what Denji’s up to. I’m usually eating dinner or having a drink, my cats curled up on the couch, and my wife telling me how much she’s enjoying the series and trying REAL HARD to not grab the manga and binge-read it in one sitting (I predict she’s going to fail). It’s a consistent routine I’ve got going and one I’ve come to appreciate. 


To my surprise, the fourth episode of this balls-to-the-wall anime decided to demonstrate how nice it is to have a part of your day that’s solely yours and/or shared with someone who’s adopted the same vibe. It didn’t gloss over it, either. The episode legitimately quiets down for a few minutes just to show a well-animated, mundane moment in Aki’s day. 


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Honestly? It’s a major highlight, not just in the episode but in the series itself so far.   


Chainsaw Man is full of gloriously bloody action, frightening creature designs and protagonists you’d want to keep on a leash when walking around with them because you know they’re gonna get into trouble. The beginning of the fourth episode is a reminder of the mayhem of the series. Just when you think Denji’s won, another devil appears to pick up where the last one left off. Denji can’t turn into the titular character, too low on blood from the last battle. He keeps fighting, though, and holds his own for as long as he can. Fortunately, Aki shows up and ends things with a single command.


Aki in Chainsaw Man


From there we get a bit of quiet — but not really. Denji’s recovering, but the conversation is serious. Power set him up to be killed by the Bat Devil. Aki knows that Denji’s covering for her for some reason, and he knows that he has to tell Makima something about what happened. Things are worked out eventually, leading to Aki waking up the next day and going about his business.


This brings us the scene I referenced earlier. For a couple of minutes we watch Aki get out of bed, wash his face, brush his teeth, make himself a cup of coffee, and go out and read the paper. That’s all that happens. Every part of his morning is animated with just as much care as the anime’s more crucial moments. The colored swirls of Aki’s toothpaste. Him grating his coffee beans before dumping them into a filter and gently pouring in hot water. Him enjoying the morning breeze from his balcony. It’s a complete contrast to what we’ve seen in the series so far and I love it just as much as I love everything else in Chainsaw Man.


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That’s not to say we haven’t gotten any downtime with these characters, there’s just always something else going on. Makima embraces Denji after he slaughters a horde of zombies, but that comes with her making a deal with him. Denji getting to finally enjoy toast and jam is loud, messy and paired with Aki’s annoyed scowl. Power enjoying time with Meowy involves massacring animals for food and the Bat Devil snatching her cat away. There hasn’t been much of anything that just lets a character BE… until now.


Denji in Chainsaw Man


Having something that’s regular and yours is important. It’s not just Aki we see this with. This scene also shows Denji waking up and going about his day less chaotically than when he first got to Aki’s place. The calm morning has obviously had an effect on him. I dare say Denji’s gotten comfortable — something he sorely needs. 


As Aki does laundry and vacuums, Denji simply eats his toast. The bread isn’t as haphazard as it was in Episode 2, the table and utensils are clean and Denji is just… quiet. The two are also civil toward each other, with Aki cutting up the ingredients to make curry for lunch. It’s nice to see the two getting along, but it’s also a genuinely relatable moment. After all the heart-pounding action in your life, you really do want to drink coffee, read the paper and clean your place. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve felt pure bliss from putting groceries away or seeing my favorite bubble bath brand on sale. 


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This all goes out the window when Power shows up, providing a comical level of disorganization that makes you feel for Aki. That being said, it’s interesting to see Denji being the voice of reason in regard to taking care of the house. Before, it had been Aki telling him not to choose violence, but now Aki gets to watch as Denji tells Power to respect vegetables and flush the toilet. I get the feeling the tranquility of Aki’s apartment will do some good if its effect on Denji is any indication. 


I wasn’t expecting this kind of character interaction in a series where a guy can have a chainsaw erupt from his forehead, but in an anime so wild, I’m here for the tranquil moments.  





Briana Lawrence is the Senior EN Features Editor here at Crunchyroll. When she’s not writing she’s taking care of her three butthead cats and playing Hades for the 100th time. You can check out her writings and her book series over at her website and give her a shout-over on Twitter.