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|“||The weak have no rights! They don't get to make choices! All they can do is be relentlessly crushed by the strong! Now maybe the Demons know of a way to cure your sister. Maybe! But don't think for even a moment that any one of them is going to respect your wishes, just like I have no respect for you! That's reality!||„|
|~ Giyu Tomioka to Tanjiro Kamado|
Giyu Tomioka (冨岡 義勇) is a Demon Slayer and the Water Pillar of the Demon Slayer Corps.
Giyu is a tall young man with medium-length, messy black hair tied back into a low ponytail. He has thin eyebrows and sharp, dark blue eyes. Giyu wears the standard black Demon Slayer's uniform along with a haori with two different patterns: one solid red and one geometrically patterned with green, orange, and yellow (which were based on the haoris worn by his late older sister and late best friend Sabito, respectively). During his battle with Muzan Kibutsuji, he lost his right arm.
Giyu always wears a serious expression on his face. He has a reserved personality and a strong sense of justice with no tolerance towards those who don't know their own limitations and throw away their lives. While letting Nezuko Kamado live due to Tanjiro Kamado's persistence, he shows zero hesitation when killing other Demons and has no respect towards them like most Demon Slayers. Even so, Giyu violated the Demon Slayer Corps' code of conduct when he protected Nezuko during Shinobu's attempt to kill her. This implies that he doesn't completely despise Demons as some other Pillars do, and is willing to make an exception for a Demon by letting them live if they don't kill and eat humans. This shows that he is more pragmatic in dealing with Demons rather than out of hatred for Demons like some other pillars do.
Giyu appears to have a complex with what others think of him and is shocked when Shinobu Kocho claims he is hated by many.
He is a man of very few words and has trouble interacting with others, so he usually keeps himself at a distance. It is revealed later on that Giyu suffers from an inferiority complex which he developed since his participation in the Final Selection. It gets severe to the point where he contemplates abandoning his position as the Water Pillar until Tanjiro helps him realize that instead of acting on his survivor's guilt, he should cherish his life and live on for the people who sacrificed their lives for him.
Despite his aloof and stoic nature, Giyu is shown to be protective and caring towards those he is close to and considers his friends. This is first shown when he puts his life on the line for Tanjiro and Nezuko by vowing to commit seppuku if the latter were ever to eat a human. Giyu has been shown to lose his composure and usual stoic demeanor when those he cares about are in danger, as seen when he is greatly angered by Akaza's attempt to kill Tanjiro and visibly shocked when he hears the news of Shinobu's death.
This is further shown in the fact that he still wears half of Sabito, his late best friend's, and his older sister's haori as a memento of them. However, Giyu appears to be particular in who he shows emotions for, as he doesn't appear to react at all when informed of the passing of Genya Shinazugawa, Muichiro Tokito and Kyojuro Rengoku.
Abilities and Powers
As a Pillar of the Demon Slayer Corps, Giyu is a very powerful swordsman. He is able to easily defeat the Father Spider Demon in his transformed state and Rui, Lower Moon Five. During his fight against Akaza, Upper Moon Three, he was able to hold on his own for some time and like Kyojuro, Akaza is amazed by Giyu's skills to the point that he offers to transform the Pillar into Demon, something Akaza only asks of the most worthy of his opponents. Akaza states that he has not fought a Water Pillar as skilled as Giyu in fifty years.
- Master Swordsman: Being a Pillar of the Demon Slayer Corps, Giyu is one of the most powerful and skilled swordsmen in the entire organization. Akaza, the Upper Moon Three, states that Giyu possesses finely developed swordsmanship.
- Enhanced Speed: Giyu is very fast, being able to tie up Inosuke Hashibira before he even realized what happened. He was also able to cut off Rui's head in the blink of an eye.
- Enhanced Endurance: Giyu possesses great levels of endurance, as shown when he endures a powerful attack from Akaza, the Upper Moon Three, and continues to fight with only minor bruises. Although Giyu seemingly fell apart against Muzan as compared to Obanai and some other Hashira and the demon king even knocked the sword off and cut his one hand. At most he could only support other Hashira.
- Crimson Red Nichirin Blade: During the fight against Muzan, Sanemi forcefully clashes his sword together with Giyu's turning both of their blades temporarily red, which grants them the ability to hamper the enhanced regeneration of Demons.
- Demon Slayer Mark: During his battle against Akaza, Giyu awakens his Demon Slayer Mark, appearing as a fluid-water like design on his left cheek. When activated, he gains a tremendous increase in speed, precision, and endurance to the point where he could engage in a long battle against the Upper Moon Three on even ground. However, he was unable to come close to cutting Akaza's head, which ultimately led to his sword being broken and nearly fatally injured if it weren't for Tanjiro's intervention.
Breath of Water Style (水みずの呼こ吸きゅう, Mizu no Kokyū): Taught by Sakonji Urokodaki. The user can increase the amount of oxygen in one's blood by controlling his breathing pattern. This increases his strength and agility to equal a demon's. He has learned to do full focus breathing at all times as all pillars have, further increasing his base strength, speed, and stamina. He knows all of the Breath of Water Style techniques and has developed one additional style of his own.
- First Style: Water Surface Slice (壱いちノ型かた水みな面も斬ぎり, Ichi no Kata: Minamo Giri): A single concentrated slash.
- Second Style: Water Wheel (弐にノ型かた水みず車ぐるま, Ni no Kata: Mizu no Guruma): The swordsman jumps and spins his body while slashing.
- Third Style: Dance of the Rapid Current (参さんノ型かた流りゅう流りゅう舞まい, San no Kata: Ryūryū no Mai): The swordsman swings his blade at his opponent in a way that mimics the movement of waves on the surface of water.
- Fourth Style: Striking Tide (肆しノ型かた打うち潮しお, Shi no Kata: Uchishio): The swordsman makes multiple consecutive slashes while twisting their body in a flowing fashion similar to a harsh tide.
- Fifth Style: The Merciful Rain of a Dry Day (伍ごノ型かた干かん天てんの慈じ雨う, Go no Kata: Kanten no Jiu): A "sword strike of kindness" that kills the target with little to no pain. This style is used when the enemy surrenders.
- Sixth Style: Twisting Whirpool (陸ろくノ型かたねじれ渦うず, Roku no Kata: Nejire Uzu): The swordsman fiercely twists his upper and lower body, which creates a whirlpool that cuts anything caught in it.
- Seventh Style: Piercing Rain Drop (漆しちノ型かた雫しずく波は紋もん突づき, Shichi no Kata: Shizuku wa Mondzuki): A fast and accurate stab. The fastest Breath of Water technique.
- Eight Style: Waterfall Jar (捌はちノ型かた滝たき壷つぼ, Hachi no Kata: Takitsubo): The swordsman cuts the target vertically.
- Ninth Style: Water Splash (玖くノ型かた水すい流りゅう飛沫しぶきKu no Kata: Suiryū Shibuki): Minimizes the landing time and surface needed when landing, allowing the user to move without limits. Ideal when fighting in a place with no solid foothold.
- Tenth Style: The Dragon of Change (拾じゅうノ型かた生せい生せい流る転てん, Jū no Kata: Seisei Ruten): A continuous attack that increases in power with each rotation, creating a strong slash.
- Eleventh Style: Dead Calm (拾じゅう壱いちノ型かた凪なぎ, Jū Ichi no Kata: Nagi): A technique created by Giyu himself. Giyu engages a skill that disables and nullifies incoming attacks. However, its effectiveness is limited as fast and numerous attacks can break through it.
- Giyu's name contains the kanji for "heroism, loyalty and courage" (義ぎ勇ゆう, giyū).
- Giyu's favorite food is simmered salmon with daikon (Winter radish). Seeing a fresh plate made Giyu smile, a sight which impressed and also disgusted Shinobu.
- Giyu was ranked in 4th place as of the first character popularity poll with 2,190 votes.
- Giyu is the only character who has his own spin-off. The spin-off is a two-part story depicting events after Giyu’s encounter with Tanjiro and Nezuko, called Giyu Tomioka: Gaiden.
- Giyu's Kasugaigarasu is a very old crow, so it tends to make mistakes when giving messages. He is said to also make Giyu very nervous.
- Giyu's both Japanese and English voice actors share the role of Sasori in Naruto: Shippuden.
- Giyu's English voice actor, Johnny Yong Bosch, also voiced Zhang Bao, Ichigo Kurosaki, Adam Park, Shotaro Kaneda, Lelouch vi Britannia, Kiba, T.K. Takaishi, Vash the Stampede, Kung Jin, Nero, Zero, Yukio Okumura, Eriol Hiiragizawa, Nathan Adams, Nobita Nobi, Hajime Hinata, and Yu Narukami.
- Koyoharu Gotōge's initial design for Giyu was roughly the same as the official design, except it featured him with finger-less sleeves, a cloth that tied the ends of his haori around his waist, and looser hakama pants.