Jujutsu Kaisen Strengthens a Core Bond While Teasing an Early Death

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Episode 3 of Jujutsu Kaisen, "Girl of Steel," now streaming on Crunchyroll.

Jujutsu Kaisen forms its central trio following the introduction of Kugisaki Nobara, the third 1st-year student joining Jujutsu Tech. However, an ominous mission report reveals that an early death could plague the newly-formed team.

A mission log details a strange, embryonic apparition appearing in the sky above a juvenile detention facility. Since several non-Jujutsu Sorcerers witness the Special Grade Curse womb, the urgent situation calls for "three Jujutsu Tech first-years" to be dispatched to the scene. The log's final note indicates that one of those three die, and given that Itadori, Fushiguro and Kugisaki are the school's only first-years, the stakes in the fight against Curses continues to heighten.

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Jujutsu Kaisen's Central Squad

The episode serves primarily as an introduction to Kugisaki and building the dynamic between her, Itadori and Fushiguro. Kugisaki makes her initial judgments of Itadori and Fushiguro known, kicking the relationship off in a rocky way. After meeting in the heart of Tokyo, the team believes they are about to enjoy a day in the city until Gojou takes them to the location of a Curse. Because of Fushiguro's previous injuries, he joins Gojou on the sidelines while Itadori and Kugisaki enter the Curse-infested abandoned building. However, before sending them inside, Gojou gives Itadori a Cursed Tool -- a large knife called "Slaughter Demon" -- since he hasn't begun training his Cursed Energy. A final warning from Gojou instructs Itadori not to unleash Sukuna, given the instability and danger the powerful Curse would cause.

After splitting up to cover more ground, Itadori immediately encounters a Curse, which he quickly defeats in flashy fashion with his new blade and natural athleticism. Outside, Gojou explains to Fushiguro that they've already witnessed Itadori's willingness to face Curses without fear, which has deterred even the most talented of sorcerers, so this mission's focus is Kugisaki. While she has more experience than Itadori, Gojou wants to test Kugisaki's resolve against Curses stronger than those she faced in the countryside.

Kugisaki's Cursed Technique, Revealed

Armed with a hammer and nails, Kugisaki confidently eliminates one Curse by launching her Cursed Energy-infused nails into it. Afterward, she notices a young child hiding in the building. Before she can save him, a Curse materializes through the wall and takes the boy hostage. Kugisaki, frustrated, drops her hammer and nails in an attempt to have the Curse release the child, but it doesn't cooperate. Thankfully, Itadori punches a hole in the wall behind the Curse and uses Slaughter Demon to slice its arm off, pulling the boy away in the process. Though the Curse phases through the wall to escape, Kugisaki showcases her Straw Doll Technique, which causes her target to erupt in an explosion of spikes. By nailing the Curse's arm to her straw doll, Kugisaki's "Resonance" attacks its heart, exorcising it -- much to Gojou's approval.

With glimpses of Kugisaki's past in a countryside village, we see her disgust at how her friend Saori was essentially bullied into moving back to Tokyo. This moment seems to plant a seed in Kugisaki's mind, both hoping one day to be reunited with Saori and realizing her dreams of escaping her old life. While she tells Itadori her reason for joining Jujutsu Tech was to live in Tokyo, it actually carries significant weight for the team's newest member.

While the team is still new, the threads of a close bond are woven between Itadori, Fushiguro and Kugisaki, especially apparent as they try to agree on a place to eat for their victory meal. If the foreboding report holds any truth, and one of them will die, then the survivors of Jujutsu Kaisen's main squad will be massively affected in the coming episodes.

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