‘Demon Slayer’ Season 4 Episode 2 Recap: Who Is Kanae Kocho’s Killer?

After setting up the core plan of the Hashiras to take the battle to Muzan and the rest of his demon lackeys, the fourth season of Demon Slayer slows things down a bit to explore the past of Water Hashira, Tomioka Giyo, and for good reason too. In his own eccentric way, Tomioka had distanced himself from the rest of the Hashiras for unknown reasons, which was not a good sign before their training for the final conflict began. It was necessary to address the situation, which becomes the key focus in the second episode of the ongoing season. 


Previously, in the absence of the leader of the Demon Slayer corps, Kagaya Ubuyashiki, his wife Amane had conveyed his message to the Hashiras about the necessity of the Demon Slayer mark emerging in each of them, which would empower them to a great extent before their battle against Muzan and the rest of the Kizukis. Kaguya had also approached the demon doctor, Tanjiro’s associate Lady Tamayo, using his crow-familiar messenger, invited her to the Ubuyashiki mansion, and requested that she work with Shinobu Kocho, the insect Hashira, who is also an expert on demon physiology. While the first episode focused on the plans being charted out, the second episode revolves around clearing psychological hindrances that will ensure the proper implementation of those plans. 

Spoilers Ahead


Did Lady Tamayo agree to Kagaya’s proposal to join the Demon Slayers?

The episode begins right where the first one ended, with the crow messenger of Kagaya inviting Lady Tamayo to the Ubuyashiki mansion, much to her shock. Kagaya reminds her about their common goal: to end Muzan’s terror once and for all. Despite that, Tamayo is surprised, wondering just how a demon like her can be accepted among the ranks of other Demon Slayers and Hashiras.

Lady Tamayo’s loyal companion, Yushiro, rushes to her chamber, as he has been alerted to the presence of the outsiders. After all, they have to be on the run constantly, both from Muzan and his lackeys and from the Demon Slayers as well. Realizing that someone was present in Tamayo’s chambers, Yushiro gets anxious and suggests Lady Tamayo relocate. However, to his surprise, Tamayo remarks that they no longer need to be afraid, and this will probably be the last time they need to relocate. She has accepted Kagaya’s proposal and is willing to help the Demon Slayers using her medical expertise and knowledge about demons. 


Why did Tomioka distance himself from the rest of the Hashiras?

On the other hand, upon Kagaya’s request, Tanjiro goes to convince the reserved, stoic Water Hashira, Tomioka Giyu, to join the rest of the Hashiras for training. Initially ignoring Tanjiro for a couple of days, Tomioka gets flustered by his constant nagging and finally reveals the reason why he has kept his distance from the rest of the Hashiras. 

Tomioka doesn’t consider himself a Hashira to begin with, due to a past tragedy that forever altered the course of his life. During his training days as Demon Slayer, Tomioka befriended Sabito, one of the extremely skilled waterbreathing technique users of his mentor, Sakonji, and the two quickly became best buddies. During the final selection test, which lasted for seven days, Sabito proved to be the best of the trainees, as he took down multitudes of demons and even saved Tomioka’s life, who wasn’t able to kill a single demon in that period. Later, to save the rest of the trainees from the attack of a demon, Sabito sacrificed his life, leaving his best friend Tomioka with a scarring survivor’s guilt. While Tomioka passed the selection for surviving the timespan along with the rest of the trainees, the most proficient among them, Sabito, was the only one who couldn’t make it to the end. Feeling a deep self-loathing for himself ever since, Tomioka suffers from imposter syndrome. And even though he has worked rigorously to hone his breathing skills to match other Hashiras’ levels, in Tomioka’s mind, he should have been the one to take Sabito’s place. These deep-seated feelings are the reason he was unwilling to participate in the training along with the rest of the Hashiras. 


How did Tanjiro inspire Tomioka?

Tanjiro is moved by Tomioka’s account, as he can relate to Tomioka on a personal basis. During the “Mugen Train Arc,” he lost the person he idolized the most—the Flame Hashira Kyojuro Rengoku—and a similar set of feelings had entrapped his mind. However, Inosuke had reminded Tanjiro that Rengoku believed in him, and to honor that belief, Tanjiro must never succumb to this defeatist attitude of giving up in self-loathing. Tanjiro shares his realization, asking Tomioka what Sabito would have wanted for him. 

Like a number of Hashiras and Demon Slayers, Tomioka had lost his family to the demons as his elder sister Tsutako sacrificed herself to save his life the day before she was supposed to be married. The traumatic experience of childhood had manifested negative feelings in his mind from a young age. Tanjiro’s question at once reminds Tomioka of a past memory he had shared with his late best friend, who had reprimanded him when Tomioka first considered his life to be worthless while feeling extreme guilt for his elder sister’s death. Sabito had asked him to abandon thoughts like this, as they are an insult to Tsutako’s sacrifice. Tomioka remembers, after all, that to honor these two most important people in his life, Tomioka wears the half-and-half attire, and just to stop the pain of losing them, he shouldn’t give up. 


The Water Hashira is finally convinced by Tanjiro to join the rest of the Hashiras in training, as the much-needed reminder by Tanjiro clears up his emotional blockage once and for all. 

Who is the killer of Kanae Kocho?

We move to the Ubuyashiki mansion, where Shinobu Kocho, the insect Hashira, is seemingly fuming over a particular situation, which is not revealed to the viewers just yet. Our best guess is that Kagaya has shared his proposition with her about working with the demon doctor Lady Tamayo, and Shinobu is having a hard time accepting it. As the next scene acts as a reminder that her dear elder sister, Kanae Kocho, the former Flower Hashira, had been killed by a demon, it is understandable why she would abhor the idea of working with a demon, whatever the purpose might be. 


Her apprentice/adopted sister, Kanao Tsuyuri, drops by as she shares her willingness to continue being trained by Shinobu. However, the insect Hashira reveals that she cannot participate in the Hashira training as of now, and we realize that Kagaya has indeed mentioned the partnership with Tamayo to her. Shinobu shares that she is going to reveal to Kanao about the demon who killed her sister, Kanae, and the episode comes to a close with Shinobu mentioning that she will teach Kanao how to kill that particular demon as well. 

The name of the demon who killed Kanae Kocho is not revealed, which will be addressed in the upcoming episodes, but we can assume that it is one of the remaining Kizukis. Kagaya’s suggestion might have incited the hatred Shinobu feels for the demons, and she is aiming to take care of an unfinished business by trying to get justice for her late sister by taking down the demon that killed her. Her apprentice, Kanao, is a user of the Flowerbreathing technique, which Kanae was an expert on, and this connection makes all the more sense in regards to her current decision. 


Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Siddhartha Das
Siddhartha Das
An avid fan and voracious reader of comic book literature, Siddhartha thinks the ideals accentuated in the superhero genre should be taken as lessons in real life also. A sucker for everything horror and different art styles, Siddhartha likes to spend his time reading subjects. He's always eager to learn more about world fauna, history, geography, crime fiction, sports, and cultures. He also wishes to abolish human egocentrism, which can make the world a better place.

Latest articles