Dorohedoro Review: Does It Deserve Its Unpopularity?

Dorohedoro caiman is eating a person

Many of us have not yet heard the name of dark fantasy, action/adventure anime, “Dorohedoro”. It is not as popular as it should have been. The reason it is so underrated is because of the character designs. We all know, “Sex sells”. But unfortunately, this anime doesn’t objectify any of its male or female characters. The MC is cursed with a lizard face and hence, the audience can only feel attracted to his character and easy-going nature, rather than his physical appearance, which of course, is a big turn off for female otakus.

One more thing that makes this anime unlikable, is gore and violence. However, if you notice closely, the setting is a lot similar to any slum area you find in underdeveloped countries and we see, how the poor powerless human beings of this anime struggle to survive in very poor and extremely unhygienic conditions. Moreover, they are victims of various experiments. Sorcerers use them and dump them to suffer.

Through violence, they defend themselves and protect their homes. They have no choice. They need to protect their dying world from intruders. A few people with no fancy weapons, fighting so many villains on a daily basis would obviously includes a lot of bloodshed. This is what makes this post-apocalyptic world so realistic. Looking at violence in this way, considering the situation, provides us with a whole new direction while judging this anime.

Yes, the main character, Caiman, ripped off the skin of a little girl’s face. It is one of the most famous scenes of this anime, because of which people avoid it, although the viral clip clearly showed that it was an accident on his part and he never intended to harm a little girl. If you watch the anime, you would know, that little girl was also a part of the party summoned to kill him and the series continuously hints at the fact that it was none but this innocent-looking little girl who experimented on Caiman and cursed him with the head of a lizard. Caiman has no memories of his past, no family and no home. Until he kills the sorcerer who cursed him, he won’t get his identity back. Hence, this is not just a story of violence but also a realistic tragedy of someone’s identity crisis. This anime was never marketed towards kids. This is our own bad habit that once we see an “18+” tag on an anime, we automatically expect it to be ecchi and not gore.

 Like many other anime of this genre, this anime too teaches us about external appearances and deception, but in a rather gory way. What makes it special is the unexpected motif of trust and friendship beyond the borders of race and class. Once you start watching this  you probably won’t be expecting a message like this but the fact that nothing is sugar-coated in this anime, makes you trust it and believe in this message even more. Even if you see it as a war between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat, you will get to know that different people are different and no two are the same. Even if they are a part of a system that missuses power without objecting to anything, doesn’t mean that they are emotionless. No one is a saint in this anime but they have their own importance.

If bloodshed makes you uncomfortable, then this anime is not for you and you should not force yourself to watch it. But if that is not the case, then you should definitely try it out at least once. The story and the characters ate unique, realistic and enjoyable. The violence is not that gory after the first half and it’s mostly an adventure full of hope. Do not let random opinions on the internet deceive you. Watch it for yourself and then decide whether it is grotesque or not.