Nezuko Kamado is one of the most important characters from the Demon Slayer manga. Tanjiro’s little sister, Nezuko was the only survivor of Muzan’s brutal attack on the Kamado family (Tanjiro was not present, so he also survived), although, in turn, she was transformed into a demon. Being special, Nezuko managed to retain a large portion of her initial humanity and never attacked humans. Still, she had to wear a muzzle on her face the whole time. In this article, we are going to tell you why.
Nezuko received her muzzle from Giyu Tomioka while she was unconscious. He wrapped it around her mouth so she always had something to bite on. Namely, as a Demon, Nezuko was prone to attacking others and injuring them, as well as potentially eating them, since that’s what Demons do to humans. Giyu placed the muzzle over her mouth for everybody’s protection.
The rest of this article is going to focus on Nezuko Kamado and her dual nature, that of a human and that of a Demon. You’re going to find out why Nezuko has to wear a muzzle over her face and what would happen if she were to lose it. Nezuko Kamado is a uniquely special character in the Demon Slayer manga and that is why she deserves a standalone article.
Nezuko was the eldest daughter of the Kamado family, which was made up of her parents, Kie, Tanjuro, and her brothers Tanjiro, her older brother, and her younger brothers, Rokuta, Shigeru, Takeo, and Hanako.
They all lived on the mountain during the Taisho era. After the father died for reasons still unknown, Tanjiro assumes the responsibility of supporting his family by selling charcoal and firewood in nearby towns while Nezuko’s role was to watch over her mother and younger siblings, however, that family life full of happiness turned into a snowy night, into a horrible nightmare that changed his life forever.
That night, a horrible monster, Muzan Kibutsuji, entered the house where the members of Nezuko’s family lived, to whom without showing an iota of compassion and without caring that they were children, he murdered them all as well as the mother. Nezuko did her best to protect her family from her being severely injured in the attack and knocked unconscious.
When Tanjiro arrives at her house and finds the horrible scene, the first thing she does is take her sister, still alive, so that someone could help her. But at that moment, Nezuko wakes up and violently attacks her brother, suddenly increasing in size with the intention of wanting to devour him, but her instinct to protect her family prevails and Nezuko fights against herself, seeking to prevent her savage taking hold of her.
At that moment a Demon Slayer, who turns out to be Giyu Tomioka, enters the scene with the intention of assassinating Nezuko since he knew what had happened, but he runs into Tanjiro who defends his sister from the hunter as best he can, who finally agrees to let Nezuko live once he learns the story of what happened to his family from Tanjiro himself.
Since then, Nezuko has had a bamboo muzzle that Giyu Tomioka gave her, which is fastened around her jaw with a strip of red cloth. Giyu Tomioka was a skilled Demon Slayer and he knew what would happen had he let Nezuko go just like that. He gave her the muzzle so she wouldn’t attack anyone and taste blood. Demons tend to eat humans and if Nezuko were to taste human blood, her transformation would’ve been irreversible. This is why she had the muzzle, which she could bite into whenever she had the need to bite something.
After this, Giyu orders Tanjiro to find a man called Sakonji Urokodaki. Her brother first takes her to bury their dead family, then she hides in a cave, seeing that the sun is rising, and waits for her brother to find something to carry her so they can travel during the day. Thus, they head towards Sakonji’s house, but encounter a demon, having just killed and eaten a family, on their way.
Tanjiro attacks the demon, hitting it in the jaw with his axe, but his wounds heal quickly and he brags about his generative abilities. Enraged, the demon runs towards Tanjiro, but Nezuko chops his head off with one blow, knocking his body to the side as he continues to attack. Tanjiro and Nezuko manage to fend off the demon, slamming its head into a tree and throwing its body off the mountain.
Sakonji suddenly appears and informs them that they cannot kill a demon with these methods. Tanjiro hesitates to deliver the killing blow, and the sun eventually begins to rise, disintegrating the demon as Nezuko runs into the house for protection. After a brief reprimand and test of their strength, Nezuko and Tanjiro are taken by Sakonji, who teaches Tanjiro the Water Breathing Style.
Nezuko then sleeps for the two years that Tanjiro spends training, not even waking up when he leaves for Final Selection. Sakonji takes care of her during this time, until he returns victorious from the selection, as his sister finally wakes up. She welcomes Tanjiro, kissing him and allowing him to release his fears about her.
As it turned out, Nezuko still remained very caring and protective of people she considered members of her family, although this is mainly due to the influence Sakonji Urokodaki had on her while she was asleep for two years. Sakonji, namely, conditioned Nezuko to never harm a human being, but rather to protect them from the Demons.
Nezuko also retained some of her human emotions as she cries when she is sad and smiles when she is happy. In general, she appears more distant than her human version, although she is still much calmer and less vicious than most Demons. Since becoming a Demon, though, Nezuko seems to have gotten quite bold as well and doesn’t seem to be afraid of fights. She often guards her brother and allies.
She has also developed strong willpower, as shown by her refusal to consume human flesh or blood, even when severely injured or exposed to human blood. This is shown when she rejects Sanemi Shinazugawa’s offer after he tries to lure her out so she can eat his blood. Her strong willpower persists even when she is no longer a Demon. This is shown when she willingly jumps in front of Inosuke to protect him from her own brother who had turned Demon and was trying to kill those around him. Though she could have been killed, Nezuko didn’t hesitate.
Now, Nezuko is specific because she is a demon that has never tasted blood. Demons are naturally attracted to human blood, as they cannot really eat anything else. But, Nezuko was conditioned by Sakonji Urokodaki to never harm a human being, only to protect them. Sure, she was, at points, tempted to taste human blood, but she would always fight it off, either alone or with the help of others.
What would happen if Nezuko tasted blood is (probably) this: she would succumb to her demonic urges and would, slowly but steadily, lose touch with her human side, eventually becoming a full demon along the way. This is why Giyo placed a muzzle over her mouth and why Tanjiro desperately fought to save her from that.
Eventually, Nezuko will lose the muzzle. The first time she lost it was when she awakened her full demon form during the Entertainment District Arc, but that was a rather chaotic experience and luckily Tanjiro remembered the lullaby their mother used to sing them, which calmed Nezuko down. By the end of the story, Nezuko will have transformed back into a human, thanks to Tamayo’s medicine, thus losing the muzzle once and for all.