How to watch Demon Slayer in order: a guide for newcomers

Demon Slayer
(Image credit: Ufotable)

Watching Demon Slayer in order is way more complicated than it should be. Take a deep breath: there are three seasons, two movies, and some of it is skippable. So you can't just watch it from start to finish otherwise you'll be watching some things twice and missing out on other things.

To help you prepare for Demon Slayer season 3, we’ve put together a no-nonsense guide on how to watch Demon Slayer in order. That includes the first season, the Mugen Train and Entertainment District Arcs, plus the upcoming Swordsmith Village arc.

And once you've done with all that, there are plenty more series to dip into. Here's our list of the best anime you should be watching right now.

How to watch Demon Slayer in order

Nezuko in Demon Slayer

(Image credit: Ufotable)

Demon Slayer currently consists of two seasons and a movie sandwiched in-between. The third season is imminent, arriving in April.

The first season, released in 2019, is 26 episodes long – and you should watch that from start to finish.

Here’s where it gets a little trickier to follow. A sequel to the first season was released as a film: Demon Slayer: Mugen Train. The wildly successful Demon Slayer movie was also adapted into a television arc to begin Demon Slayer season 2.

That ‘Mugen Train’ arc is seven episodes long and is then followed by wholly original episodes in the 'Entertainment District Arc'. 

In total, Demon Slayer season 2 is 18 episodes long: The Mugen Train arc is seven episodes long; the Entertainment District arc consists of a further 11 episodes.

To keep things simple, we recommend watching Demon Slayer season 1 then picking either the Mugen Train feature film or the Mugen Train recap arc to watch. From there, you can watch the Entertainment District arc. 

Things get slightly more complicated from hereon out. A second Demon Slayer 'movie', To the Swordsmith Village, has been released. It bundles together episodes 10 and 11 of the Entertainment District arc and the first episode of season 3, AKA the Swordsmith Village arc.

Once Demon Slayer season 3 debuts on April 9, To the Swordsmith Village will largely become skippable. We recommend just moving ahead to the proper episodes.

Laid out on the page, the Demon Slayer watch order looks a little like this.

  • Demon Slayer season 1 (episodes 1-26)
  • Mugen Train movie or Demon Slayer: Mugen Train TV arc (episodes 27-33)
  • Demon Slayer season 2, AKA the Entertainment District arc (episodes 34-44)
  • Demon Slayer To the Swordsmith Village movie (episodes 43-45) [SKIPPABLE]
  • Demon Slayer season 3, AKA the Swordsmith Village Arc (episodes 45-TBA)

That’s all you really need to focus on. In our expert opinion, we would recommend watching the adapted-for-TV Mugen Train arc instead of the movie. Not only do you get extra scenes, but you also get a bonus episode (the 27th episode), which provides a little more backstory to one of Mugen Train’s most prominent characters.

Should I watch the Mugen Train and Swordsmith Village movies?

Rengoku in the Demon Slayer movie

(Image credit: Ufotable)

It's completely your choice. Mugen Train is a full sequel to the first season and, unlike other anime movies, it’s canon. It also introduces various characters and concepts that are followed up on in Demon Slayer’s Entertainment District Arc.

It does feel a little redundant to watch both the movie and the Mugen Train arc series, however, so make sure you pick one or the other.

To the Swordsmith Village is less essential if you've already seen the Demon Slayer season 3 premiere, which airs on April 9. But, for those who want a sneak peek of the new season, it's worth watching now.

Can I skip any Demon Slayer episodes?

Demon Slayer

(Image credit: Ufotable)

Anime can sometimes be packed with so-called ‘filler’ episodes, those designed to kill time until the source material gets pumps out new issues for the TV show to adapt. That’s not really the case in Demon Slayer.

Some episodes can be a little slow, particularly in the middle third of the first season, but everything is worth watching. We’d only recommend skipping the Demon Slayer: Mugen Train arc if you’ve already seen the Mugen Train movie recently.

How many episodes of Demon Slayer are there?

Demon Slayer

(Image credit: Ufotable)

There are currently 44 episodes of Demon Slayer for you to watch – with more on the way.

Demon Slayer season 3 (AKA the Swordsmith Village arc) will adapt the next chapter in Tanjiro’s story. It’s not yet known how many episodes will be in the third season, however.

For more from the world of anime, here's our guide to Jujutsu Kaisen season 2.

Bradley Russell

I'm the Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, focusing on news, features, and interviews with some of the biggest names in film and TV. On-site, you'll find me marveling at Marvel and providing analysis and room temperature takes on the newest films, Star Wars and, of course, anime. Outside of GR, I love getting lost in a good 100-hour JRPG, Warzone, and kicking back on the (virtual) field with Football Manager. My work has also been featured in OPM, FourFourTwo, and Game Revolution.