Although there are multiple possible contenders, Iguro Obanai, the snake Hashira, is a standout candidate. The love of Hashira’s romantic involvements has been a hot topic among Demon Slayer enthusiasts. While at first glance, Mitsuri and Iguro may seem like an unlikely pair, with their vastly different personalities and approaches to situations. However, as we delve deeper into their story, it becomes clear that they share a bond that goes beyond their differences.
[SPOILER WARNING] The article discusses the romantic developments of Mitsuri Kanroji and Iguro Obanai. Please be warned that it contains spoilers for those who have not completed the series.
Obanai Iguro is an accomplished swordsman who serves as the Snake Hashira in the demon slayer corps. Despite being 21 years old, he is physically weaker than Mitsuri, who is the Love Hashira and is only 19 years old. This contrast in their physical strength is highlighted in the “arm contest rank” created by Koyoharu Gotouge on a Q&A page in chapter 97.5.
Iguro’s slender physique allows him to go without food for up to three days, while Mitsuri’s insatiable appetite is the subject of discussion in chapter 101. She outeats Tanjiro, and although impressed by her ability to consume so much food, Mitsuri claims that she didn’t eat that much, hinting that she usually eats even more.
After the meal, Tanjiro asks Mitsuri why she joined the demon slayer corps, and she admits that she did so to find a husband. Mitsuri believes that it’s important for a girl to find a partner who is stronger than herself, someone who can protect her. While it is true that Iguro isn’t physically stronger than Mitsuri, he compensates with his exceptional swordsmanship when it comes to battle.
Aside from their contrasting physical abilities and fighting styles, Mitsuri and Iguro also have distinct personalities. Mitsuri embodies kindness and optimism, while Iguro is infamous for being ruthless and less empathetic. Additionally, Mitsuri towers over Iguro by a few centimeters.
During the Hashira meeting in season 1, episode 23, where we, fans, first see the two, Mitsuri’s forgiving nature clashes with Iguro’s desire to punish Giyu for breaking core rules and protecting the demon Nezuko. While everyone else stands on the ground, Iguro coolly perches on a tree, adding to his menacing demeanor. This scene establishes Iguro’s ruthless personality as vastly different from Mitsuri’s compassionate nature.
Mitsuri seems to view Iguro in a positive light, she blush and thinks to herself that he’s dependable and has a cool aura like a snake. However, it’s unclear if she’s in love with him, as she blushes and has hearts for other characters as well, consistent with her role as the Love Hashira.
The Untold Past of Mitsuri
In chapter 123, we are given a glimpse into Mitsuri’s backstory. At 17 years old, Mitsuri was informed that she couldn’t get married due to her peculiar hair color, which was considered unusual in her community. Furthermore, the marriage interviewer claimed that only bears, boars, or cows would take her as a spouse because of her immense physical strength.
It is revealed that Mitsuri possesses eight times the muscle density of an average person, making her extremely strong. At just 14 months old, she lifted a 4 pound rock, much to the surprise of her mother. Because of her strength and voracious appetite, Mitsuri felt compelled to conceal her true self and conform to society’s expectations of a well-mannered and proper wife.
Therefore, she dyed her hair black, suppressed her desire to eat until she became dizzy, and pretended to be weak. Eventually, a man was willing to marry her, but she couldn’t bear the thought of living a lie. She yearned for acceptance and wondered if there was a place where she could genuinely be herself.
Mitsuri and Iguro Together
On chapter 124’s cover page, we are presented with a captivating image of Mitsuri happily eating while blushing, with Iguro sitting beside her, gazing at her with gentle eyes. The illustration further clarifies that Iguro might be the one Mitsuri is interested in, which delighted many fans.
In the opening pages of chapter 124, Mitsuri’s backstory is continued, and it becomes clear that she didn’t want to conform to societal expectations and marry someone who wouldn’t accept her for who she truly is. Instead, she chose to join the demon slayer corps, where she found acceptance. A panel shows Kagaya as the one who rescued her from her past, and he reassures Mitsuri to which he told her that:
These words bring Mitsuri to tears, and she bows down to express her gratitude to Kagaya.
Additionally, Mitsuri discloses that Iguro is the one who gifted her with the long green striped socks she is often seen wearing. The panel is incredibly endearing as Iguro seems shy giving her the pair of socks, and we witness two hearts hovering between them. From these observations, it seems evident that Mitsuri and Iguro have feelings for each other. The only question that remains is why they have not pursued their relationship yet.
Igoru Worried for Mitsuri
During chapter 128, following the events of the Swordsmith Village Arc in Demon Slayer, a Hashira meeting is convened. At the meeting, Sunemi expresses his jealousy over Mitsuri, having had the chance to fight an Upper Moon – Hantengu, unlike himself. Meanwhile, Iguro displays genuine concern for Mitsuri and Muichiro, which Mitsuri acknowledges when she responds to his worry, leading her to blush and sweat. Iguro’s reaction to Mitsuri’s response is worth noting, as her thoughts confirm that she has noticed his concern for her well-being.
Furthermore, during the meeting, Mitsuri and Muichiro are asked to explain how they unlocked their demon slayer marks. Mitsuri’s explanation is hilariously terrible, and everyone notices, including Iguro, who facepalms. Despite Mitsuri’s apologies, it’s evident that Iguro is affected by her embarrassing situation.
In chapter 132, the Hashira Training Arc, Tanjiro attends Iguro’s training, and we discover that Mitsuri and Iguro correspond through letters. During their conversation, Iguro mentions that he learned about Tanjiro through Mitsuri’s letters. However, we see Iguro becoming visibly angry with Tanjiro when Mitsuri shares their enjoyable training sessions, leading Iguro to comment to Tanjiro that he isn’t as kind as Mitsuri while displaying a dark expression. It’s evident that Iguro is envious of Tanjiro’s closeness to Mitsuri.
When Tanjiro completes the training, Iguro warns him not to become too friendly with Mitsuri, his facial expression indicating his deep feelings for her. While the manga portrays Iguro as cold-hearted, it’s later revealed that he is only soft for Mitsuri.
Mitsuri, on the other hand, does not exhibit the same level of possessiveness and jealousy toward Iguro as he does toward her. Nevertheless, Iguro meets the criteria of Mitsuri’s ideal partner, and she enjoys spending time with him. She treasures his gifts, especially the socks he gave her, which she wears every day. Additionally, Mitsuri blushes and perspires when she realizes that Iguro is worried about her well-being, and they exchange letters frequently.
Despite their obvious mutual attraction, the story has yet to provide a confession of love or an explanation for why they haven’t expressed their feelings.
The Epic Battle Between Mitsuri and Iguro vs Muzan
In the first part of the Demon Slayers versus Muzan fight, both Mitsuri and Iguro fight alongside their comrades. Interestingly, the panels often show them standing close to each other, which doesn’t seem like a coincidence. At one point, some demon extras appear, and Iguro quickly dispatches them while saying,
This act of protection is precisely what Mitsuri wanted from a partner, and she blushed excitedly at the sight of him saying this. In fact, she thinks to herself that “Iguro is great!!” Afterward, Iguro approaches Mitsuri, to which he asks, “are you hurt” she blushes and says, “no!” to which Iguro replies, “let’s go,” and Mitsuri responds, “okay,” with hearts all over her speech bubble.
As the fight continues, they face off against Upper Moon 4 – Nakime, who presents a significant challenge due to her blood demon art, which creates dimensional shifts. During the battle, Mitsuri acts recklessly, and Iguro saves her by catching her in midair. He then gently advises her to watch closely, think hard, and proceed calmly, so she doesn’t get hurt. It’s evident that Iguro cares deeply for Mitsuri and doesn’t want her to be in danger.
Later, in chapter 188, As the battle against Muzan and the Hashira continues, Mitsuri begins to struggle, she realizes that she’s relying on intuition and luck to dodge Muzan’s attacks, and she knows she’ll be the first to fall. Unlike Iguro, who has been protecting others in addition to himself, Mitsuri has been struggling to keep herself alive. Indeed, she is the first to be seriously injured by Muzan, losing a portion of her face and arm. Iguro’s worried reaction is the first one we see after this happens, and he immediately takes her to safety, leaving her with the Kakushi to tend to her wounds. Although Mitsuri insists she can still fight, Iguro tenderly tells her she’s done enough and leaves, causing tears to stream down her face as she begs him not to sacrifice himself.
In a touching moment, Iguro contemplates himself, saying,
as he envisions them taking a walk in nature while wearing civilian clothes. However, after revealing his scar that looks like a Joker-like slice on his lips, he goes against his previous thought, saying, “no.. that is impossible for me. Unless I die and get a different body in which this filthy blood does not flow, I have no right to be with you.” He says this to himself as Mitsuri cries out for him while he walks away from her to fight Muzan.
Revealing Iguro’s Backstory
In chapter 188, Iguro reveals that he comes from a corrupt bloodline that has gained wealth by killing and stealing money. They lived in opulent mansions, feasting shamelessly on their ill-gotten riches. However, his own backstory is even darker. He was born into a family of many girls, and it had been 370 years since the last boy was born.
Since birth, Iguro was confined to a cell, where his female relatives pampered him with lavish food that covered the whole floor. Due to poor ventilation, the smell of fat made him feel queasy. At night, he could hear something massive crawling around and feel a menacing presence. This made him sweat profusely, making it impossible for him to sleep. When he turned twelve, he discovered that the crawling creature was a serpent demon that his family worshipped as a god.
It is revealed that Iguro’s family has been leaving off the riches from those whom the serpent demon has slayed. The demon loved feeding upon newborn babies, so in return, the family had been offering their own first born offspring to her as sacrifices. Before Iguro was to be sacrificed, the demon took a keen interest in him due to his unique eyes. She allowed him to grow to a more satiating size before she would eat him. To imitate her own appearance, the serpent demon had Iguro’s mouth cut, resulting in bleeding. The demon collected his blood in a chalice and drank it horrifyingly.
Iguro, fearing for his life, started to scratch the lattice of his cell using a stolen hairpin. He was extremely anxious about getting caught but found solace in a snake he names as Kaburamaru, who was the only creature he could trust. Together, they managed to escape. However, the serpent demon discovered him, but fortunately, the Flame Hashira saved him.
Interestingly, the Flame Hashira turned out to be Rengoku’s father before he became a pessimistic drunk. Although he eventually retired, the good deeds he performed as a Hashira continued to have a significant impact in the present. Without him, there wouldn’t have been Iguro, who is now an essential member of the Hashira as one of the strongest and most skilled.
The Flame Hashira intervened and helped Iguro reconnect with his surviving cousin. However, Iguro was only blamed by his cousin for the deaths of 50 individuals who could have been saved if he had accepted his fate as a sacrifice to the demon. Although he knew deep down that these accusations were unjustified, he couldn’t shake off the guilt and shame he felt. He believed that he was corrupt, just like his family, and that his sins were too deep for him to live a normal life. As a result, he redirected his rage toward demons and risked his life to protect others, hoping to redeem himself in some way.
Iguro refrained from confessing his feelings for Mitsuri, feeling that he was not worthy of her love. He believed that the only way he could justify his feelings as if he died defeating Muzon. As the chapter concludes, Iguro declares,
with the panel showing Mitsuri’s gleeful smile, with falling petals and a beautiful sky.
Igoru and Mitsuri’s Heartwarming Ending
During the battle against Muzan, Iguro demonstrates his impressive abilities and unwavering determination, causing his demon slayer mark to awaken and his sword to turn red. Despite losing his vision and having to rely on Kaburamaru, he fights fiercely to make up for Mitsuri’s absence.
After the defeat of Muzan, Iguro cradles Mitsuri in his arms as they both succumb to their injuries. Mitsuri asks Iguro if they emerged victorious, to which he affirms that Muzan is dead. Mitsuri expresses that she no longer feels any pain, remarking, “I guess I’m dying,” and Iguro embraces her closely as he says,
Although Mitsuri regrets not being able to contribute more to their success, Iguro comforts her by recounting the first time they met.
He asks, “do you remember the first day we met?” Mitsuri grins and answers, “I was lost at the mansion, and you helped me.” He reminisces about how Mitsuri’s kindness and laughter had rescued him. He believes that despite Mitsuri’s possible struggles in becoming a Hashira, she did not show any signs of it. He goes on to say how he enjoyed their conversations and how he felt like a normal person while talking to her. He acknowledges how Mitsuri’s endless positivity and benevolence have helped many people and how proud she should be of her contributions. Iguro vows never to let anyone undermine Mitsuri’s worth.
Mitsuri is moved to tears as she expresses her happiness and how much Iguro means to her. She remembers how meals tasted better when he was with her because she noticed his affectionate gaze. In a touching moment, Mitsuri asks,
Iguro embraces her tightly and replies,
In the end, at peace with each other, Iguro and Mitsuri pass away in each other’s embrace, perhaps the happiest they have ever been in their lives.
The Reincarnation of Iguro and Mitsuri
Chapter 205 of the manga includes a notable time jump, introducing the reincarnated versions of the demon slayers. In this chapter, we witness the rebirths of Mitsuri and Iguro. On page 10, we catch a glimpse of them running a family diner together, which serves generous portions of food, reflecting Mitsuri’s personal flair, and features snake decorations, showcasing Iguro’s distinctive touch. The scene is satisfying and fulfilling, as it is the perfect happy ending that they had hoped for.
Interestingly, we learn that Iguro has not changed much from his old life, as he still gets jealous when people stare at Mitsuri’s chest. In one scene, Yoshiteru – Zenitsu and Nezuko’s descendants can’t stop staring at Mitsuri’s chest, which caused Iguro, to throw a knife at him.
The story of Mitsuri and Iguro is one of love and sacrifice that captivated the hearts of many. From their initial meeting to their ultimate demise and subsequent reincarnation, Despite the challenges they faced, their feelings for each other only grew stronger with each passing moment.