Now, below the cut are some major spoilers if you have not been keeping up with the manga. I’ve been reading the scanlations up until this week and let me tell you, between the anime and the manga, I’m hooked. But I have become increasingly anxious as they head towards the deadline where they have to kill Koro-sensei or else the world will end and wonder, “What is going to happen?”
The last chapters of the manga have been focusing on the back story of Koro-sensei, whom we discover was the original God of Death, a famous and brutal assassin. He grew up in some unnamed country (they say that he’s not Japanese), in a violent world where he experienced nothing but death and abuse. He became an assassin because his childhood taught him nothing but the need to kill and be powerful. He was a sociopath who cared for nothing but the beauty of killing his next target.
Koro-sensei decided to take on an apprentice, the current God of Death, who watched him assassinate his father. However, during an attempted prison break, the current God of Death betrayed him and giving him up to Shiro, who was heading up a research project to grow anti-matter inside of living hosts. You find out then that he did not destroy the moon—in fact a lab rat who was also infused with the same anti-matter eventually exploded, taking out 70% of the moon’s core. Like the lab rat, on the day of the graduation of his 8th grade classroom, Koro-sensei will either die or he will explode, destroying much of the earth along with him.
Why did he become a teacher? The abused lab assistant, Aguri Yukimara, the one person who was truly kind to him, taught Class E and was killed by weapons that were used in an attempt to subdue Koro-sensei. He said that he learned the value of teaching and human connections from her. Koro-sensei would honor her dying wish to take care of Class E. Deciding to have the class assassinate him resolved two issues: it allowed him to fulfill her wishes and his death would have meaning because of what the students have learned through their lessons in assassination. If he didn’t claim to have destroyed the moon, he would have never been allowed to teach her class so he approached the government threatening to destroy the world, rather than telling them that his death was inevitable.
There are about 60 days until his death and I’m very torn about how I want this whole story to end and I am curious what others think about it as well.
On one hand, I want him to die because it would be more consistent with the entire narrative and might give the story a whole immediacy that it would not otherwise have. The stakes need to be high. The story would end by his students killing a teacher that they have learned to love to save the world, lending a sense of tragedy to the whole story, but it would lend a depth to their struggle. One thing I have disliked about stories like Bleach (besides the fact that they just add characters rather than be creative with story arcs) is that the stakes always feel low. Every really important character manages to live with only ancillary people being sacrificed. I guess it can feel satisfying in a way but it never feels like the protagonists are really in danger or have lost anything truly significant. Maybe it would also say something symbolic about growth and maturity, as we often have to leave the people that have nurtured us in order to continue growing again. Like Thomas Wolfe wrote, “You can’t go home again.” These students would move forward in their lives with the lessons that they’ve learned but they can never capture what they had in Class E.
On the other hand, I really like Koro-sensei and would love to see where he went as a character if he wasn’t facing imminent death. How would it affect the students? What would their relationship mean? How would their relationship to assassination—to killing change if the stakes were different? And if there was a different target? What would have the whole year with Koro-Sensei taught them that they could use in the future? And most importantly, we’d see further seasons of the anime and a long life to the manga. I’m not sure though how they would do this without sacrificing the integrity of the entire story.
So anitay, what do you think? And in general, how have you been enjoying this story?