Water Hashira explained: 4 reasons he didn't want to join the Hashira training

This moody, lonely Hashira has his own reasons not to dive into the Hashira training like the rest of his peers.
Demon Slayer: Hashira Training Arc - Episode 1 Stills - ©Koyoharu Gotoge _ SHUEISHA, Aniplex, ufotable
Demon Slayer: Hashira Training Arc - Episode 1 Stills - ©Koyoharu Gotoge _ SHUEISHA, Aniplex, ufotable /

Let’s dive into the world of Demon Slayer, where demons lurk in the shadows and heroes swing swords sharper than your grandma's tongue at a family reunion.

Today, we're zeroing in on our cool, calm, and perpetually unimpressed Water Hashira, Giyu Tomioka. He's like that one guy at the party who leans against the wall with a drink, judging everyone's dance moves. But why does Giyu, with all his skills and broody charm, decide to give the big ol' pass to the Hashira training sessions initially? Let’s spill the tea!


Who is Giyu Tomioka?

Giyu isn’t just any Hashira - he’s like the cool, mysterious new kid in school that everyone wants to know about but can’t quite figure out. As one of the Hashiras, the elite demon-slaying champions, Giyu stands out with his jaw-dropping Water Breathing Technique. Imagine the slickest, smoothest dance moves, but with a sword and against the most disturbing demons - that’s Giyu for you.

But there’s more to this broody hero than just swinging a sharp blade. Giyu’s story is knotted up tighter than a pair of earbuds stashed in your back pocket for a month. He carries around a massive load of emotional baggage that makes each battle personal. His past is shadowed by tragedy and loss, which colors everything he does and even how he interacts with others.

As a child, Giyu and his sister Tsutako were attacked by a demon a day before her wedding, and she sacrificed herself so that Giyu could live. Despite his desperate attempts to save her, Tsutako was killed, leaving Giyu alone and overwhelmed by survivor's guilt. This traumatic event not only motivates Giyu to join the Demon Slayer Corps but also instills in him a relentless drive to protect others, preventing them from experiencing the same grief he endured. His solemn vow to defend the innocent becomes his guiding principle, shaping his actions and his commitment as a Hashira, even though he continues to struggle with his own feelings of inadequacy and isolation stemming from his past.

While training under Sajonki in order to take the trials to become a Demon Slayer, he became close friends with a boy named Sabito, who went on to slay nearly every demon he saw that day, only to be bested and killed by the Hand Demon. This has haunted Giyu to this day, as he doesn't believe he belongs with the other Hashira since he didn't kill a single demon during his trial and yet still passed because he survived the night. This is the icing on the cake, the true reason Giyu doesn't feel like he deserves to be there.

He’s the type who broods under the moonlight, pondering the deep, swirling currents of his turbulent life, all while maintaining a cool exterior that could chill a cup of coffee. When you see Giyu in action, remember: each slice of his sword is a verse in the epic poem of his life - a tale of pain, resilience, and a relentless fight against demons, both literal and metaphorical.

Why skip the Hashira training?

Now, onto the million-yen question: Why does Giyu skip out on Hashira training?

1. Lone Wolf Vibe: Giyu is what you’d call a lone wolf. He’s not the "let's hold hands and train together" type. This guy likes to handle things on his own, keeping others at a safe distance, maybe because he’s afraid to get close after losing people he cared about (more on that in a sec). Group activities? Not his cup of tea.

2. Guilt and Grief: Giyu's past is as cheerful as a raincloud. He's got a truckload of guilt from that particularly nasty incident involving his sister, not to mention the fact he feels like a fake Harisha, like an impostor. This kind of emotional baggage doesn’t exactly put you in the mood for team-building exercises. He's more about introspection and personal atonement than high-fiving fellow Hashiras.

3. A Different Approach to Training: Giyu is all about perfecting his craft, but he believes in a more solitary approach. You won't catch him sparring in the yard with the rest - he’s more likely to be found brooding by a river, working on his forms alone. It’s not just about being anti-social, it’s about honing his skills in a way that he believes is most effective for him.

4. The Protector Role: Remember, our boy is the Water Hashira. He often finds himself guarding the Demon Slayer Corps by taking on missions that require immediate attention, which can often mean skipping the regular Hashira meet-ups. When duty calls, Giyu doesn’t send it to voicemail - he answers right away.

Demon Slayer: Hashira Training Arc - Episode 1 Stills - ©Koyoharu Gotoge _ SHUEISHA, Aniplex, ufotable
Demon Slayer: Hashira Training Arc - Episode 1 Stills - ©Koyoharu Gotoge _ SHUEISHA, Aniplex, ufotable /

The broader picture

In the grand scheme of Demon Slayer, Giyu’s choice to train alone highlights a critical theme of the series: the journey to finding one’s own path. While the other Hashiras might thrive in a group setting, Giyu finds strength in solitude, which is pretty rad in its own right.

After some minor convincing done by Tanjiro (with the help of some cold soba noodles), Giyu is ready to participate in the training with his fellow Hashira.

Giyu Tomioka, the man, the myth, the moody Hashira. He chooses to walk a path paved by his own rules, guided by his turbulent past and his unwavering resolve. Whether he’s splashing around with his Water Breathing or saving necks just in the nick of time, he does it his way, proving that sometimes, to truly find yourself, you gotta break away from the pack.

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