Devils, Fiends and Hybrids are the primary beings in the Chainsaw Man universe that can often be confusing to newbie readers. They are majorly differentiated by how they look, for instance the peculiar shape of the head that fiends have.
And then there’s Makima who looks completely human, but if you have read the manga, you know she ain’t one. So what exactly is Makima? A devil? Or a Hybrid? Or worse, is she a fiend?
Is Makima a devil, hybrid or a fiend?
To answer in short, Makima is a devil. She is the control devil, embodying the fear of control and her identity is confirmed in chapter 75, when the United States president makes a contract with the Gun Devil to kill her.
So yeah, she is neither a fiend, nor a hybrid, but a bonafide devil. But, here’s where the confusion begins.
Read More: Makima’s powers and abilities explained!
Chainsaw Man presents devils as supernatural beings that are born out of fear and a species that need to be feared. Both their personalities and their looks, cement this sentiment.
Bearing resemblance to the concept that their name represents, devils almost always had an eerie appearance that made them stand out and instill panic.
From the Gun Devil to the Zombie Devil, all shared sinister looks which by no means could be missed. You might put forth the case of the Angel Devil and Pochita as arguments. True, they might not have come across as sinister, but there was never a doubt as to which side of the line they belonged to.
Now take a look at Makima.
Introduced as a beautiful yet mysterious woman heading the special division 4 of Public Safety Devil Hunters, no amount of squinting would have given away her real identity as the Control Devil, except maybe for those peculiar eyes of hers.
If you had read Fujimoto’s one shot “Yogen no Nayuta”, you might have caught on to this detail.
No one in their right mind doubts the Rinnegan after all right? Right?
There was an air of mystery surrounding Makima, true. Her actions reeked of not-so-good ulterior motives; spelling out ‘Final Boss’ in bold letters at multiple instances in Chainsaw Man manga. But, if you share the same level of intellectual awareness as me, then it would have been impossible to predict the reveal in chapter 75.
And post the reveal, people piped in with doubts regarding Makima’s appearance and her identity.
Why exactly did she look human? Why was she alone blessed (if I may say so) with looks that’d instantly hook the average unsuspecting human male. Why did she have this unfair advantage over other devils in being able to approach her prey?
Related: Is Asa Mitaka a Fiend or a Hybrid?
Why does Makima look human?
To understand this, let’s take a look at the basics that govern a devil’s appearance in Chainsaw man.
Devils come into existence due to humanity’s collective fear regarding the concept behind their name. And their appearance too surrounds this concept that is feared. For instance, the Gun Devil is constructed out of Guns and bullets. The same goes for the Zombie devil, the Angel devil and the other devils we have seen in the series.
Makima is the control devil. She embodies the fear of being and feeling controlled. It could extend to the fear a person has, of being manipulated and monitored or being forced to do something by someone who has power over them.
Makima’s powers follow a similar line of thought and confirm what we have placed down so far.
Humans mostly fear being controlled by other individuals or humans. Be it in the form of superiors, or collectively as an organization, or even the government. In fact, several social psychology studies have found this aspect of feeling controlled by other people to have a detrimental effect on a person.
What I am trying to say here is that the fear of being or feeling controlled relates to humans. This explains why Makima looks human. Her often ruthless yet manipulative personality goes well with this.
Her appearance is the personification of an individual who needs to be obeyed and feared. So, full marks to Fujimoto for that.
Now, you could be satisfied with this answer and be at peace with Makima’s character design. However, the ever-curious mind fails to rest easy and ventures ahead to the next possible question.
“I understand why Makima looks human, but why does the control devil have to be a woman? Is there any reason for that?”, is what you ask now.
The short answer for this question is that Fujimoto wrote Makima as a female character. Admit it, the plot is more fun that way. A male Control Devil would never evoke the same emotions in Denji, or us.
When Fujimoto first conceived the idea of Chainsaw Man, Makima was a character that he had a good idea about. She was supposed to signify dominance. Being dominated was a terrible thing that happened to people these days and he wanted to portray that in the series.
That aside, Denji was subconsciously pursuing a maternal figure in his life, because of his rough upbringing. Makima acted in that capacity. She just turned out to be a dominating and controlling mother; again, a concept that is not uncommon.
Let’s take it a notch higher and look at another possible reason why Fujimoto made Makima a female character. This is pure tinfoil territory, beware!
Okay, when looking into dominant personalities, I stumbled across this article, which quotes a study finding women to be more controlling and aggressive in a relationship as opposed to the conventional belief of men being more dominant.
Similar opinions (voiced by a few) surfaced when looking at which gender was more dominating in modern-day relationships. Look at the incendiary insinuations I make.
By representing Makima as a female human, was Fujimoto tracing this same line of thought? I’ll let you decide that.
In the end, portraying the control devil as a human was not a plot hole or a flaw in Chainsaw man. On the other hand, it is a well-thought-out move on Fujimoto’s part. Devils that have humanoid features are said to be more tolerant of humans.
While Makima saw humans as dogs she could exert control over to achieve her goals, she certainly did not have any animosity towards them. If I were to believe what she revealed about her goals, Makima might even have sympathized with humans and their plight to a certain extent. This is in line with her appearance as a human. There, it’s all falling in place.
Do you agree with what I have said in the blog about Makima looking human? If there’s anything more you need to add or point out any inconsistencies, please feel free to do so in the comments below! Or you could reach out to me on Tumblr!