When a significant character dies, many anime series reach a point where they can no longer be continued. Most shonen shows often gently towards this development before employing the death of a single character whose passing inspires the main cast to pursue a more important goal.
But because Chainsaw Man isn't your standard anime, it's not afraid to shock viewers by potentially decimating its main characters. Although the dust may still be settling and the number of casualties may not be known, one thing is certain: Denji and his comrades' lives may never be the same.
How did Special Division 4 fare?
Episode 8, "GUNFIRE", opens with the dubious fallout of Denji's unwitting escapades with a drunken Himeno. After Himeno dragged Denji back to her apartment, the latter resisted her advances towards him in favor of reaffirming his feelings for Makima, leading to a burgeoning friendship between the two once Himeno sobered up. Yet, this fleeting happiness would prove to be short-lived, as it would be followed by a surprise ambush on the whole of Special Division 4, resulting in what appeared to be the untimely deaths of the bulk of its members, including both Makima and Himeno.
In characteristically brutal fashion, the anime kicked off its apparent murder spree with what may be the most astonishing moment yet. Makima, who was on her way to a meeting in Kyoto, found herself and her entourage accosted by a group of gun-weilding assailants, becoming their first victim before moving on to her remaining subordinates in Tokyo. While her supposed death is sure to cause ripples within the world of Chainsaw Man, it likely comes as a surprise to many viewers, as Makima presented herself as much more than just Denji's primary love interest, potentially concealing some dark and powerful secret before being shot point-blank in the head.
Still, while Makima could constitute the biggest single loss to Public Safety, her fate should not undercut that of the rest of Denji's colleagues. Not only were the other members of Special Division targeted and possibly cut down by similar aggressors; Denji, Aki, Power, and Himeno found themselves facing an unprecedented threat whose arsenal rivals Denji himself. The mysterious interloper, identified in the episode's credits as Samurai Sword, not only possesses a monstrous form similar to Denji's Chainsaw Devil, he also has shared history with the protagonist, being the grandson of the yakuza boss that forced Denji into involuntary servitude.
Unknown New Enemies
Like Denji, Samurai Sword appears to be some sort of human-Devil hybrid. This implies that either he sought out such powers to take revenge for Denji's role in his grandfather's end, or that the mob boss had more involvement with Devils than he originally led Denji to believe. Either way, Samurai Sword has already proven himself capable of besting both Aki and Power in order to retrieve Denji's heart, along with an implied ability that allows him to come back from the brink of death. In fact, Samurai Sword presented himself as so dangerous that Himeno deemed it necessary to sacrifice herself to stall him.
Himeno, who had originally offered her eye for the sake of using the Ghost Devil's hand in combat, chose to accelerate her contract to summon the Ghost Devil in its entirety. This resulted in her slowly disappearing bit by bit, until her crumpled clothes were all that remained. Devil contracts, which were briefly explained in previous episodes, have shown themselves to be an immeasurable boon to Devil Hunters, who are rarely capable of standing up to Devils on their own. However, the tragic price Himeno paid demonstrates how a deal with a Devil can take a deadly turn, one that is sure to scar Aki for some time to come, especially since the Ghost Devil was ultimately unable to end Samurai Sword, after another ally of his made use of her contract with the Snake Devil to defeat it.
Who Died In Chainsaw Man Episode 8?
Altogether, the potential casualty figure from this episode is a truly staggering one. Aside from Himeno and Makima, almost everybody outside the central trio is implied to have been shot or missing in action. This would include the three senior Hunters that they met at the recent drinking party, as well as rookie Hunters Kobeni and Arai, who partnered with them during the Eternity Devil incident. But, while the outlook may seem grim, there is the possibility that some of them made it out alive.
Power received a fake out death earlier in the series when she was swallowed by the Bat Devil, showing that Devils don't always dispatch their marks in a purely lethal way. In particular, this could provide some way out for Himeno, as the terms of her contract to "give all of herself" to the Ghost Devil could have some loophole in it. Additionally, given that the guns used in the episode were confirmed to have come from the Gun Devil, there is a chance that they have are able to neutralize people in a way that doesn't kill them. Denji was shot in the head, but none of those present seem to believe that he actually died from it, though this may be due to his unique situation.
Considering the immense scale of destruction and the number of characters targeted in this recent attack, it is unlikely that everybody made it out alive. At the very least, in order for this assault to have really meant anything, several members of the supporting cast will probably be revealed as killed off in the episode to come, escalating the conflict for Special Division 4, who may now be acting without a leader. Still, odds are that those who come out of this alive may do so with new assets in play, or at least with something bone chillingly intimidating revealed about them.