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Reigning wizards turn poor people into monsters and mushrooms … it’s anime Dorohedoro!

Reigning wizards turn poor people into monsters and mushrooms … it’s anime Dorohedoro!

Dorohedoro is a science-fantasy anime TV series based on the Japanese author and illustrator Q Hayashida’s manga [comic or graphic novel]. The manga began serialization in late November 2000 and ended in late 2018.

MAPPA, a power center, known for works such as Yuri On Ice (2016), Kakegurui (2017-18) and last season of Attack on Titan (2021-22), produced the series. Dorohedoro was broadcast on Japanese television between January and March 2020. In May 2020, the series had a worldwide streaming release on Netflix, in 13 episodes.

Dorohedoro (2020)

Dorohedoro takes place partly in a post-apocalyptic industrial world, known as the hole, where people face the constant threat of being “practiced” by wizards. The bizarre story follows Nikaido, a female chef and owner of the Hungry Bug restaurant, and Caiman, a man who works as a medic who has lost his memory and has a lizard’s head due to the magic of an unknown wizard, in their quest to kill wizards and recover Caiman’s identity.

Meanwhile, En, a criminal lord whose organization, The Family, controls the wizarding world, sends his “purifiers”, Noi and Shin, to eliminate his enemies, the Cross Eyes. The ravages of Nikaido and Caiman and Caiman’s possible connection to the Cross Eyes inevitably lead to a clash. Many derivations and complications follow in the very elaborate series, with the season adapting about 40 of the manga’s 167 chapters.

MAPPA’s animation and direction involves remarkable experimentation and the use of newer techniques, such as mixing colored 3D models with 2D animation and detailed backgrounds, which embody Hayashida’s striking graphics with fluid animation, tempo and editing. (K) NoW_NAME’s soundtracks are suitably diverse, mixing varied genre influences and tones, balancing comic tracks with serious, smoky industrial ones. These elements provide crucial support for the adaptation, and bring out the strength of Hayashida’s work.

Anime and manga, especially modern entries, are notorious for their lack of interest in and connection with important social realities. They often favor risk-free and simplified (sometimes adolescent) humor, fictional world-building and / or excessive carnage to compensate for the absence of real artistic substance.

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