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Hantengu's backstory: How was Hantengu transformed into a demon? Why is Hantengu scared all the time ?
Hantengu's backstory: How was Hantengu transformed into a demon? Why is Hantengu scared all the time ?

Hantengu’s backstory: How was Hantengu transformed into a demon? Why is Hantengu scared all the time ?

Hantengu, popularly known as the Upper Moon Four among the 12 Kizuki of the demon king Muzan Kibutsuji, plays the role of one of the primal antagonists in the manga and series of Kimetsu No Yaiba in the Swordsmith Arc. 

He is a powerful demon possessing extraordinary strength, exceptional endurance, remarkable agility and incredible swiftness.

Hantengu made his first appearance during the Upper Moon meeting ushered by Muzan after the defeat of Gyutaro and Daki by Tengen Uzui in the previous arc, The Entertainment District Arc. 

We are almost halfway through the Swordsmith Arc, and Tanjiro, Genya and Nezuko are still pushing their limits and devising new strategies against the clones of Hantengu, the manifestation of his emotions that represent his emotional structure. 

He is proving himself to be a deadly, tedious, and next-to-invincible foe for the demon slayers, thanks to his extraordinary abilities and strategic thinking.

Hantengu: Appearance, Personality and Abilities 

Hantengu’s main body resembles an elderly man who lives in perpetual fear.

He looks to be crouching, trembling, and escaping from something.

His distinct facial features involve his twin horns, a big lump between them, droopy eyes, and sogging eyebrows happen to amplify his dreadful face.

Compared to a few other demons who happen to have better physiques and are devilishly handsome, Hantengu falls just under the opposite category.

He seems older and more repulsive due to the wrinkles all over his face and receding hairline.

However, Koyaharu Gotouge has not left his fandom disappointed with the appearances of his characters.

It is often said that villains attract more viewers, and Gotouge abides by this belief staunchly. He has illustrated the demons of the Upper Moon with great precision and has made them equally attractive as the Hashiras. 

Considering the appearance of Hantengu, his base form does not evidently capture the attention of the viewers. Rather it repulses the audience with sheer awfulness. 

Now here comes the twist in the plot that truly shook the audience and took them by surprise.

Witnessing such a major “glow-up” in the appearance of Hantengu was not on the list of expectations. It was an unforeseen treat for the viewers.

His base form might be very disappointing and visually unappealing, but his clones stole the show.

The audience got what they wanted in terms of appearances, catering to the fascination with villains of the audience.

Hantengu’s original form possesses a mousey personality. He is always on guard and always frightened of his surroundings.

This form portrays his tendency to flee from any shortcomings instead of facing them head-on. 

Hantengu’s core is his primary form, which is a scaled-down replica of his normal body. It isn’t easy to pierce his skin because of this body’s extraordinary resilience.

Hantengu’s remarkable stealth ability is shown in the Swordsmith Arc, episode three, when the three of them, Muichiro, Tanjiro and Nezuko, are in a middle of a conversation without having an inkling of the presence of Hantengu lurking outside the house.

Despite the fact that Tanjiro has the power to detect any demon from afar, Hantengu was able to stay undetected until he came to a very close proximity. The three of them did not notice the demon around them until then. 

Coming to his clones, Hantengu is a demon who possesses a unique ability that enables him to multiply, all thanks to his Blood Demon Art.

It makes him one of the formidable antagonists of Demon Slayer. Each body is distinctively different from the other one. Each personality represents different emotions.

The base form of Hantengu represents Fear; the embodiment of Hantengu’s rage is Sekido; the most carefree and laid-back Hantengu clone is Karaku; Aizetsu is the clone perpetually pessimistic and frequently referred to everything as dismal; Urogi is the cheeriest clone; Zohaukten is the personality that is quick to lash out and is very spiteful and bitter towards his opponents; Hantengu’s wrath is embodied by Urami, the most hypocritical and deluded personality.

Hantengu’s Backstory: How was Hantengu transformed into a demon?

Hantengu's backstory: How was Hantengu transformed into a demon? Why is Hantengu scared all the time ?
Hantengu’s backstory: How was Hantengu transformed into a demon? Why is Hantengu scared all the time?

From the series and manga, we have seen that every demon, before the transformation, lived as a human.

We have reached season 4 of the anime and have witnessed the backstories of most of the Upper Moons.

In a similar fashion, we will be diving into the backstory of Hantengu in this article.

The past of Hantengu depicts him as a troubled person with a history of deception and mental illness.

He had delusions and sometimes made outrageous claims before he turned into a demon, displaying his cognitive instability. 

He was a wicked human being who deceived, manipulated and resorted to falsity. 

By playing the victim every time, Hantengu shrewdly deflected his blame on somebody else for every wrong deed that he committed.

He indulged himself in such sins in order to gain the sympathy of the people to escape punishment. 

Hantengu also has a history of violent crimes. In several towns and cities, he killed individuals and stole from them while claiming that he was not accountable for such deeds. 

His insistence that the problem was with his hands revealed a degree of psychological instability and insanity.  

He developed the practice of persistently lying, fabricating elaborate tales, and twisting the truth in order to place blame on others.

A series of unsettling incidents damaged Hantengu’s personal life. He was married several times, but since he felt mistreated, his marriages suffered. 

Hantengu’s peculiar manifestation of his deteriorating mental state was the murder of his wives and children. 

His habit of aggressive behaviour and the heinous act of killing his family members indicate a lot about his erratic mental condition.

Hantengu’s heinous crimes were not disregarded, and he was eventually apprehended by a strong magistrate.

He received the death penalty because of his wicked and heinous doings. But even in the face of punishment, Hantengu stubbornly refused to take responsibility for his horrible deeds.

When Hantengu met Muzan Kibutsuji, his trip through his confinement and the period he spent waiting to die took an unexpected turn. Muzan, who felt sorry for him, given his fragile and vulnerable state, helped Hantengu by giving him his blood. 

Having observed Hantengu’s difficult situation and identifying a potential pawn, Muzan provided his help through his blood. Hantengu became a demon under Muzan’s assistance when he accepted the offer. 

When faced with desperation and the possibility of imminent death, Hantengu made a crucial choice to accept Muzan’s offer. Hantengu underwent a significant transformation by consuming Muzan’s blood. 

Infusing Hantengu’s blood with the potent demonic properties contained within Muzan’s blood caused a profound and irreversible transformation. A new demon existence was born, as his human form contorted and twisted.

The exact details of the transformation process are not explicitly described. Still, it is presumed that the infusion of demon blood triggered a series of profound physiological and metaphysical changes within Hantengu. 

His human nature was replaced by the demonic essence, granting him extraordinary powers, heightened physical abilities, and an extended lifespan.

Hantengu escaped from his cell by embracing his newly discovered demonic nature and entered the outside world. He went looking for the magistrate who had given him his death sentence, driven by a burning need for vengeance. 

Hantengu violently killed the magistrate because he thought it would make him content.

However, the dying magistrate delivered a grim message: regardless of Hantengu’s deeds or crimes, they will eventually catch up with him and result in his punishment.

Hantengu was able to create a special and incredibly potent Blood Demon Art for the following 200 years while living as a demon.

The powerful emotions he had felt throughout his life found expression in this artwork in the clones of himself. 

The unique personalities and skills of each clone reflected the range of emotions that drove Hantengu’s existence.

He finally became Upper Rank Four among the Twelve Kizuki, a group of eminent demons serving Muzan Kibutsuji, thanks to his mastery of his Blood Demon Art, which spurred him to advance up the ranks.

The unsettling remarks of the magistrate nonetheless continued to serve as a continual reminder that his previous wrongdoings would continue to mould his fate and as a prediction of the potential repercussions awaiting him in the future, despite his newfound power and rank.

Why is Hantengu scared all the time?

Hantengu's backstory: How was Hantengu transformed into a demon? Why is Hantengu scared all the time ?
Hantengu’s backstory: How was Hantengu transformed into a demon? Why is Hantengu scared all the time?

Hantengu’s continual state of worry and anxiety is what makes him who he is—both in appearance and mentality.

His look clearly shows that his dread has manifested physically. Hantengu is shown as shaking and shivering continually, stooped over in an effort to get away from or defend himself from perceived threats. 

His fearful and drooping eyes add to the sense of uneasiness and worry he always felt.

These physical characteristics represent the ingrained fear that permeates his entire life.

It is inextricably connected to his past and the events that helped mould him. Because of the profound psychological turmoil he went through both before and after turning into a demon, terror travels through his entire body.

In Demon Slayer, every demon was once a human being. Whatever characteristics they had before turning into a demon were inherited by their demon form as well. 

Hantengu was infested with mental disorders and delusions while he was a human. The events that he experienced in his life and the sins that he committed were so horrible and wicked that they eventually got manifested in his demon form. 

These delusions and deep-seated psychological issues likely manifested themselves as very disturbing and frightening experiences that caused him to live in a perpetual state of fear. 

All the emotional turbulences he went through in his human life acted as a catalyst to his already evil demeanour. 

His mind was likely filled with irrational and terrifying thoughts, heightening his anxiety and making him constantly on edge. 

Furthermore, Hantengu’s paranoia was probably a result of his propensity for deceit and manipulation. He may have lost himself in a never-ending game of dishonesty, overwhelmed by the fear of being discovered and the punishments that would follow.

His general sense of uneasiness and anxiousness may have been heightened by this dread of being discovered and the probable punishment.

Hantengu’s change into a demon did not allay his worries; rather, it only made things worse. He understood the dangerous existence he now had as a demon. 

Every corner in the realm of demons and demon slayers brims with all possible danger. Hantengu continually feels hunted and exposed to prospective assaults, which most likely amplifies his dread.

Hantengu’s terror is rooted in his remorse and the consequences of his previous deeds, transcending any external dangers. His decisions and the horrifying acts he perpetrated haunt him, weighing heavily on his conscience and feeding his never-ending state of anxiety.

His ongoing remorse serves as a persistent reminder of his previous wrongdoings. It makes him feel guilty and makes him feel more frightened.

Hantengu could be afraid of both the internal suffering that comes from carrying the burden of his guilt as well as the exterior repercussions of his acts, such as being found or punished. His anxiety starts to represent the internal turmoil he is experiencing.

In the Swordsmith Arc, we see how Hantengu and his clones wreak havoc on Tanjiro, Nezuko and Genya. The formidability of the Upper Moon 4 gets proven in the fight against the demon slayers.

Hantengu was an exception to the rule; normally, a demon would die instantly after having its head severed from its body. Instead, it had unforeseen repercussions that caused another creature known as Sekido to reanimate.

This unanticipated change of events reminded one of the prior confrontations between Tengen, Gyotaru, and Daki, where similar things had happened in the Entertainment Arc.

Tanjiro and his comrades sought to use the same strategy against Hantengu by drawing on their prior encounters and tactics used against Upper Rank 5 demons.

To their dismay, they found that chopping off the demon’s head caused the appearance of three more bodies: Karaku, Aizetsu, and Urogi. The demon slayers faced significant obstacles from each of these newly developed monsters, making their every strategy ineffective.

As the recent episode and subsequent ones unfold, viewers will witness the anticipated face-off between Love Hashira and Zohaukten. Mitsuri Kanroji, assuming the role of a valiant knight in shining armour, enters the fray, ultimately providing Tanjiro, Genya, and Nezuko with a much-needed respite from the intense battle.

The upcoming episodes promise to showcase the clash between Mitsuri Kanroji and Zohaukten, further heightening the tension and excitement surrounding the battle against Hantengu and his formidable clones.

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