Warning: the following article contains spoilers for Chainsaw Man season one, episode five, “Gun Devil.”
Denji has succeeded in defeating a slew of devils in Chainsaw Man so far, but the Gun Devil sounds like he’s in a completely different class.
In episode five, “Gun Devil,” Power lets him get to second base and he’s disappointed afterward because he worries that whenever he gets what he wants it won’t matter afterward. As he’s signing paperwork at the Public Safety Devil Hunters headquarters, Makima notices he’s looking forlorn and inquires as to why. She tells him that he needs to make a real connection first and that will make the intimacy better, then discloses information about the Gun Devil and why he’s such a priority for their operation.
The Gun Devil appeared 13 years ago, but nobody knows where he is now. Across the world, people were trying to profit off of guns as a countermeasure against devils, which resulted in an increase in crime and conflict. After a terrorist attack in the U.S., the Gun Devil appeared that day and was extremely powerful and dangerous to society. Every Devil Hunter now wants their shot at killing it, but Makima believes that Denji’s the one to do it because he’s not like everyone else. If he succeeds, she agrees to grant him whatever wish he desires.
We get even more context about the Gun Devil and his level of power and cruelty in a flashback scene. A mother and father are sitting in bed with their ill son Taiyo reading The Country Mouse and the City Mouse when a young Aki Hayakawa enters the room and asks his parents to play catch with him. The father refuses, telling him that they need to take care of his younger brother, and after Aki complains, his younger brother invites himself to play with Aki.
Taiyo follows behind Aki who doesn’t want him to come with him. Aki gets annoyed and they have a snowball fight, which loosens up the grumpy Aki enough to warm up to the idea of his brother joining him, and he agrees to play a game of catch with him. Aki worries that Taiyo might get too cold and makes the boy run inside to grab his glove, but when he does an explosion blast destroys the whole house, wiping it away in its entirety. The Gun Devil was responsible for this attack and he killed 1.2 million people in under five minutes. He hasn’t been seen since, but fear of devils across the board increased and made them stronger than before. Gun control got more severe to weaken the Gun Devil along with increased censorship on the news. We haven’t seen another devil affect society quite like the Gun Devil
Back in the office, Makima asks if Denji can defeat the Gun Devil and he says it’ll be a piece of cake. They’ve collected pieces of the devil over the years and Denji learns that when a devil eats a chunk of the Gun Devil, they become more powerful. The Public Safety Devil Hunters need to collect chunks of the Gun Devil, and those will attract to the original body and lead them right to him once they have enough.
Aki’s Special Division 4 implements this strategy and they go around hunting devils that have consumed the Gun Devil, and it takes them to Hotel Morin where many unofficial Devil Hunters have been slain after battling the unknown devil inside. They enter the building and search for the Gun Devil, and it proves more confounding than it had originally seemed. Devil Hunter Arai goes down the stairs from the level they’re on, only to reappear, walking down from the floor above. This place is like a maze and they’ll need to figure out a way to get out.
Even though this episode was named after him, the Gun Devil wasn’t actually in it, which could imply just how important this devil is. He represents the fear of guns, and based on the manga, he has immense speed, durability, bullet flesh, regeneration, and bullet projection. With the last ability, the Gun Devil can fire bullets from multiple guns all attached to his body and has two massive rifles for arms. The Gun Devil is actually a Fiend, and its body is full of screaming heads with a gun barrel protruding from its skeletal face. The lower half of its body is missing and in its place are six ammo belts attached to its torso.
The most likely person to defeat Gun Devil is Denji. If anyone else could, he would’ve been taken down by now. Makima’s right, there is something special about Denji and his power levels are astonishing. In his fight against the Leech Devil, he was able to hold his own even though he had lost a lot of blood and couldn’t chainsaw out.
In a previous episode, Makima tells Aki that devils grow in strength the more their names are feared, and it seems as if she might have been training for the Chainsaw Man to get to a point where he’s strong enough to tear the Gun Devil down. We’ll have to see how Denji stacks up against the Gun Devil when he finally confronts him.