Is Nobara Kugisaki Alive or Dead? [Jujutsu Kaisen]

釘崎の死亡シーン Jujutsu Kaisen

Despite being the heroine (?) of Jujutsu Kaisen, it is said that Nobara Kugisaki died.

However, there is no definitive information whether Kugisaki really died.

In this article, a native Japanese writer explained whether Kugisaki was really dead or still alive, including the Japanese backgrounds.

What happend?

First of all, I will summarize the death scene of Kugisaki.

The cause of Kugisaki’s death was that Mahito hit Idle Transfiguration to Kugisaki’s face.

Idle Transfiguration is a one-hit deadly technique that freely transforms the body that Mahito touches.

The Idle Transfiguration blew off the left side of Kugisaki’s face and eyeballs at the Shibuya Incident.

Quote: Jujutsu Kaisen Vol. 15

After that, Kugisaki received emergency treatment by Nitta, who rushed with Todo.

Nitta’s cursed technique is to prevent any further damage from the injuries you have received (but not recovery).

And, Nitta commented after giving this treatment, “She has no pulse and isn’t breathing, but not much time has passed since she recieved those injuries. Let’s just say it’s not a zero percent chance she’ll survive. I’m taking her and retreating. It’s not a zero percent chance, okey? But please don’t get your hope up…”.

After being taken by Nitta, Kugisaki has not appeared once until January 2023.

After that, the last time Kugisaki was mentioned was in Volume 17 of Jujutsu Kaisen, when Itadori asked Fushiguro, “What happened to Kugisaki?”

Since Fushiguro did not answer this question, Itadori interpreted that Kugizaki was dead.

The above is the scene related to the death of Kugizaki.

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Akutami’s Comment

Akutami, the author of Jujutsu Kaisen, commented on the death of Nobara Kugisaki in MANDO KOBAYASHI, special programs distributed in Japan

Comment of Akutami
・By the time Nitta treated Kugisaki, she was already dead.
・Due to the Nitta’s cursed technique, Kugisaki is preserved in the state immediately after she died.
・What will happen to Kugisaki depends on the resuscitation treatment after that.

From these comments above, it’s no doubt that Kugisaki died.

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Possibility of Resurrection

Since it is confirmed that Kugisaki is dead, the question is whether or not she will be revived.

Actually, Akutami said, “what will happen to Kugisaki depends on the resuscitation treatment”.

The most likely way to revive Kugisaki would be Reverse Cursed Technique.

There are two types of deaths in Jujutsu Kaisen:

1, A death that can be revived with Reverse Cursed Technique.
2, A death that cannot be revived even with Reverse Cursed Technique.

The official fanbook also mentioned these types of death.

Official Fanbook
Q. When Itadori died once, didn’t it affect the Sukuna?
A. None. Because it was still within the range that could be revived with Shukuna’s reverse cursed technique. But, if time passes and Itadori left the range, Sukuna will also die.

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In short, it can be interpreted that immediately after death, a person can be revived with reverse cursed technique.

Therefore, there is a high possibility that Kugisaki, preserved in the state immediately after she died, can be revived with reverse cursed technique.

In fact, Okkotsu resurrected Itadori immediately after Itadori died.

Perhaps Ieiri, a specialist in reverse cursed technique, can do the same thing as Okkotsu.

Considering the above situation comprehensively, it would be possible that Kugisaki will be revived.

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Foreshadowing

The foreshadowings of the Kugisaki’s resurrection are summarized below.

What Mechamaru Said

Since Mechamaru was a mole, he knew in advance that the Shibuya Incident would occur.

So, on the day of the Shibuya Incident, he arranged for Kyoto School members other than Todo and Nitta to not be able to go to Shibuya.

メカ丸裏切りの伏線
Quote: Anime Jujutsu Kaisen

The reason Mechamaru sent only Toudou and Nitta to the Shibuya was because Todo has the strength to survive, and Nitta’s cursed technique is useful.

So, if Kugisaki revives, the foreshadowing of what Mechamaru said above will make sense.

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What Kugisaki Said

At the last moment, Kugisaki said, “It wasn’t so bad!”.

However, Yaga said, “No Jujutsu sorcerer dies without regret!” in Vol.1 of Jujutsu Kaisen.

Therefore, if Kugizaki died without regrets, it would contradict what Yaga said, which implies Kugisaki isn’t completely dead yet.

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Itadori’s Surprize

Itadori died once because his heart was taken by Sukuna, and revived later.

However, Itadori kept quiet about his resurrection from Fushiguro and Kugisaki for a while, and made a surprise appearance with saying “Hah! Gotcha!!”.

Kugisaki was angry at this surprise and punished Itadori by having him hold a funeral picture frame.

So, on the contrary, there is a possibility that Kugisaki will surprise Itadori.

In this possibility, we can understand why Fushiguro was silent in response to Itadori’s question, “What happened to Kugisaki?”

In other words, we can interpret that Fushiguro also had Itadori’s surprise in mind, so he cooperated to the Kugisaki’s surprise.

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Death of Itadori, Fushiguro, Kugisaki, and Gojo

The author of Jujutsu Kaisen said at Jump Fes:

Yuichi Nakamura (Voice actor of Gojo)
Will Itadori, Fushiguro, Kugisaki, and Gojo survive in the final episode?

Gege Akutami (Author of Jujutsu Kaisen)
I think only one of Itadori, Fushiguro, Kugisaki, and Gojo will die, or all but only one will die.

What we want to know is whether “only one of the four will die” or “all but only one will die”, and “who will die”.

I would like to consider this point.

First of all, the official fanbook of Jujutsu Kaisen reveals that “Fushiguro’s end has been decided, but Kojo is undecided”.

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From the nuance that “the end has been decided”, I expect that Fushiguro will probably die.

Therefore, in the end where “only one of the four dies”, I expect Fushiguro will die and Itadori, Kugisaki, and Gojo will survive.

On the other hand, in the end where “all but only one die”, I predict that Fushiguro will die and only one of Itadori, Kugisaki, and Gojo will survive.

In this case, the question is who will survive among Itadori, Kugisaki, and Gojo, where I expect that Kugisaki will survive.

The basis for this idea is the opening of Jujutsu Kaisen Season 1.

Actually, in the first half and the second half of Jujutsu Kaisen Season 1, Kugisaki’s position has moved from the shadow position, where Itadori, Fushiguro, and Gojo are, to the position where the light hits.

呪術廻戦1期OP
Quote: Anime Jujutsu Kaisen OP

The shadows in the opening of Jujutsu Kaisen imply dark events such as Nanami’s death and Mechamaru’s betrayal, so perhaps the above scene implies to the deaths of Itadori, Fushiguro, and Gojo.

I may have read too much into it, so please regard it as a possibility only.

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Postscript

This is the article about “Is Nobara Kugisaki Alive or Dead?”.

Other articles explained the interesting and important issues in Jujutsu Kaisen.

Plese read them as well.

In addition, the Japanese version of this article is here.