Review: Chainsaw Man

Receiving the Harvey Award for best manga series the second year in a row, “Chainsaw Man’s” success has grown exponentially since its release. When fans heard that Studio MAPPA, the animation studio behind recent anime such as “Attack on Titan” and “Jujutsu Kaisen,” announced they would be taking on the challenge, “Chainsaw Man” quickly rose to the top of the charts for the upcoming season. Almost two years after the initial announcement, the show finally began airing weekly this fall. 

Taking place in a world where devils run rampant, devil hunters act as heroes, fighting them to protect humanity. The main character, Denji, makes a deal with the chainsaw devil and begins to fight devils under the command of the government’s Public Safety division. “Chainsaw Man” captures Denji’s story from start to finish, focusing on his repetitive habit of being manipulated due to his juvenile nature. 

The manga takes pride in its messy, spontaneous artistic style and paneling, and the show is popular writer and illustrator Tatsuki Fujimoto’s first time being animated. Concern about whether the manga’s aesthetic could be fluently adapted in animation quickly arose, but when the first episode aired, these worries were silenced. 

MAPPA REIMAGINING: The photo displays a frame from the show directly compared to the manga. Studio Mappa, the ones behind the animation for the show, attempt to be as faithful to the source material as possible throughout the animation process. 

MAPPA opted toward a combination of 2D and 3D animation for “Chainsaw Man,” similar to their recent adaptation of “Attack on Titan.” While this style is typically frowned upon, with overall dissatisfaction in “Attack on Titan’s” visual appeal, MAPPA’s return to CGI clearly aims to blend these styles more fluently while also keeping Fujimoto’s unique style alive. The result yields relaxed scenes with great detail in the character’s emotions and color schemes of the environment, and action scenes highlight the roughness and rapid movements the manga is so well known for. “Chainsaw Man’s” wild success was expected, but MAPPA’s work on the series leaves a great impression on fans looking forward to the second season.


Aiden Dowling

Graduate Aiden Dowling was the Co-Copy Editor and Layout and Design Director for Cedar BluePrints in the 2022-23 school year.

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