Chainsaw Man (Volume 1) – Dog and Chainsaw

Chainsaw Man Volume 1 Cover

Denji’s father killed himself leaving Denji to inherit his massive debt and the Yakuza weren’t about to forgive it. His only hope came when he made a contract with a chainsaw devil, allowing him to make money by killing devils!

Chainsaw Man (Volume 1) – Dog and Chainsaw

What happened?

The debt Denji inherited was enormous forcing him to turn to selling his body parts to keep up with the repayments. Together with his devil dog, Pochita, they survive as best they can, which is barely at all. However, Denji has dreams. They’re not overly ambitious ones, but it’s enough to keep him going. Late one night, the Yakuza boss wakes Denji and tells him he has another job for him. However, when they get there Denji learns that the Yakuza boss is being controlled by the zombie devil who hates devil hunters and has his zombies cut Denji and Pochita into pieces.

Prior to his death, Denji told Pochita that if he was to die, Pochita could take his body to keep living. He hated the idea of Pochita slowly starving to death without anyone to watch over him. Well, Pochita took him up on that offer. Kind of… He told Denji that he would give him his body back if he showed him his dreams. Pochita became Denji’s heart which enabled him to use the chainsaw devil’s powers. He returned to the zombie devil and slashed it up!

Soon after he’d defeated all the zombies too, a public safety devil hunter showed up and was intrigued by Denji. She took him in as her loyal dog and put him to work. After proving himself against the muscle devil, Denji was paired with a fiend, someone who had been possessed by a devil. Her name was Power and she was possessed by the blood devil. She asked him for his help recovering her cat, but when they got there she hit him with a hammer and handed him over to the bat devil who was hungry!

Chainsaw Man Volume 1 Denji becomes Chainsaw Man

What did you think?

I decided that I would start the manga before diving into the anime and as such knew nothing about it other than there was a guy who had chainsaws coming out of his body. That should have been a big clue as to how dark this was, but even that didn’t prepare me. That opening chapter was bleak. It was amazing, but oh so bleak. Seeing Denji having sold a kidney, an eye, and a testicle to keep up with his repayments was awful.

Then after killing the zombie devil and the Yakuza boss, Denji was free for about two seconds when he was picked up by Makima. Sure, she’s giving him a job and providing all the things he wanted in his dreams, but I can’t help but feel like she is not much better than the Yakuza boss. Only time will tell, but I don’t like her.

In fact, everyone Denji has met so far has been an asshole. After Makima, there was Aki Hayakawa who believed that Denji’s motivations were shallow and as such tried to beat him up and force him to quit. Now, wanting to survive and follow his dreams might seem shallow but that’s only because his dreams are simple, but that doesn’t mean he’s not motivated by them. Then, there was Power who tricked him so that she could get her cat back. Anyhow, this is a dark-as-hell story, but it’s also fascinating. I’m looking forward to getting into more volumes.

Chainsaw Man Volume 1 Power destroys Sea Cucumber Devil

Volume highlights

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  1. I’m glad you’re getting into the Chainsaw Man manga! It’s definitely one of my favorites. I can agree its definitely a much darker manga for a Shonen genre, but I think as the story progresses in each volume and chapter, the characters will become more developed and some of the asshole-y types end up having more depth than them then whats on the surface. Of course, I do not condone Makima’s actions or Aki treating Denji the way they do early on, but I think Aki gets some great development later and Makima is a great antagonist. Glad to see you’re giving this a try before starting the anime! I did the same thing too but ended up watching the anime after i couldn’t keep up with the manga xD.
    Great review as always!

    • Thanks. I’ve actually read six volumes so far, although I ended up watching the anime after finished the third volume. I just couldn’t wait any longer.

      However, I do have the next five volumes sitting on my bookcase at the moment. The way I’m going, I’ll get through those over the next couple of nights. I started volume six last night, expecting to just read a couple of pages and went through the whole book.

      One of the most surprising things for me is that the fights are what I would consider the highlights of the story. They’re good, but it’s the mystery that has me hooked.

    • That’s awesome 😀 ! I think you’re around the same place as me then, since Im pretty early on in the manga as well, I think I just finished Ch 20 or so(?).
      I agree the fights are pretty intense and action wise I get a major Jujutsu Kaisen vibe from it, and can understand kinda the comparisons CSM has with Dorehedoro people have mentioned!( although i havent seen dorehedoro yet).
      Anyways, I also second that the mystery and suspense or tension of the overall plot is well done too. I like how there are different arcs between the devil hunters vs major Devil boss fights arcs if you will and how we get to learn more characters backstory like how Aki’s backstory connection with a certain major devil early on.
      I definitely am happy to hear you’re enjoying the series tbh, I really have a major appreciation for the artwork and story of CSM! Sorry for rambling though, I should probably write my own review on it haha.

    • There’s definitely some similarities to Jujutsu Kaisen, but most shounen have something similar to other shounen stories.

      I just read beyond the end of season one of the anime and the next arc is my favourite so far by a long way.

      And ramble away. It’s always nice to see someone excited about something.

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