The animated adaptation of "Chainsaw Man" aired its first episode on Oct. 11. After it was announced that MAPPA would produce the anime based off of Tatsuki Fujimoto’s beloved manga in 2020, the hype to see all the iconic fights, characters and story beats in a new medium immediately skyrocketed.
As with all anime, "Chainsaw Man" would be getting its own opening. The song would have the chance to set the tone for newcomers on what type of story they’d be experiencing and remind fans of the manga what they loved about the original work. That’s just one purpose of openings, too. Many anime openings, such as "Attack on Titan’s" “Feuerroter Pfeil und Bogen” by Linked Horizon, have become iconic in their own right and are recognized even by those who have not seen the shows.
"Chainsaw Man’s" first opening song, “KICK BACK” by Kenshi Yonezu, and the visuals that go along with it are yet another masterpiece that should be stuck in anime fans’ heads for a long time.
The song and the visuals complement each other and the narrative just about perfectly. The very beginning of the opening starts out with the camera zooming into the protagonist, Denji, and three other central characters, Power, Aki and Makima, in a scene that appears to be referencing Quentin Tarantino’s "Reservoir Dogs." Following that, the vocals kick in and the opening blasts a barrage of other iconic film shots starring "Chainsaw Man’s" iconic cast. The film references include the likes of "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre," “Sadako vs. Kayako," “Attack of the Killer Tomatoes!" and more. The homages continue after the initial montage and continue for a majority of the opening.
“'Chainsaw Man' pacing” is a commonly-spouted meme online due to the fact that the manga rarely, if ever, slows down for filler or to give the characters a break from its rapid action sequences. Regardless of the jokes, it is true that "Chainsaw Man’s" plot proceeds in vigorous fashion, making the fast-paced and dynamic “KICK BACK" very appropriate for the adaptation of the story.
An equally important aspect of "Chainsaw Man’s" opening is its emphasis on the cast. Yes, even in an era where “unlike other (insert genre here) anime, this show focuses on the characters,” is a tired statement, it is undeniable that "Chainsaw Man’s" characters are already timeless and especially memorable in a medium where there’s seemingly an endless number of (also fantastic) stories to choose from. The opening doesn’t just focus on the central characters like Denji and Makima. It also gives attention to standout secondary cast members such as Kobeni, Angel, Kishibe, Beam and the story’s phenomenally designed villains.
In our busy lives, it might often seem appropriate to skip anime openings to save time and get to the episode. This can be especially true when one is binging through a show. However, when one is perfectly crafted to the point of not only have a memorable song but also one that complements the show perfectly, openings like "Chainsaw Man’s" “KICK BACK" shouldn’t be skipped too often.
Melody Feazell is a senior studying strategic communication at Ohio University. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnists do not reflect those of The Post. What are your thoughts? Tell Melody by tweeting her @MelodyFeaz.