Dorohedoro is an anime adaptation of a manga series created by Q Hayashida. The story follows Kaiman, an man with a lizard head, as he tries to find the one magic user that cursed him. Kaiman also has amnesia making his search even more difficult. Episode 1 of Dorohedoro opens inside the mouth of Kaiman. There’s someone inside of Kaiman’s mouth. He looks at Matsumura and determines that “he’s not the one.” Once outside his mouth, Kaiman asks Matsumura “what did the guy inside say to you?” When he repeats what was said, Kaiman concludes that “he’s no longer needed,” and slicing him into pieces. In his last act, Matsumura uses magic to create a door to save his comrade.


The two criminals in the previous scene were “sorcerers.” They use magic to conjure doors that connect their world to the town called “Hole.” A ghetto, with a lot of powerless people, the sorcerers use the citizens of the Hole as lab rat’s of sorts. Kaiman’s part time job at a hospital exposes the horrors that these experiments can render. Several patient’s have had parts of their bodies turn into insect parts. The partial transformation causes them to bleed and spasm. Elsewhere, Nikaido returns to her dinner. A hot spot for sorcerers, the area where it’s located is sparsely populated. She encounters the unnamed sorcerer outside. While feeding him she comments on the “shitty magic” that he was using (unaware that it’s him). He attacks her while her backs turned.

For whatever reason, Kaiman is immune to magic. Suspected to be due to the curse placed on him, this makes him a major threat to sorcerers. He and Nikaido have killed several sorcerers. This has resulted in the head Sorcerer, En, banning sorcerers form entering Hole. Lucky for Nikaido, when a sorcerer is killed their magic is dispersed. This also sets up a simple goal for Kaiman and Nikaido. If they want to reverse the curse, kill all the sorcerers. Dorohedoro doesn’t appear to complicate it’s morality until the introduction of Ebisu. At first she appears as a menacing, wearing a skull mask. However, when it gets ripped off, the fear on he face suggests that she somewhat innocent.

In a struggle between Kaiman and Fujita, he face gets ripped off. What effect this has on her and how she feels about Kaiman remains to be seen. However, I would imagine she would hate the man that tore her face off. We are introduced to two “cleaners,” Shin and Noi as they kill people in Hole. Dorohedoro is a series that is best described as quirky. This can only be a good thing. It can be difficult to stand out in this industry, but Dorohedoro has managed at least that. Kaiman is a perfect protagonist for this series, as he’s also a bit quirky. Brutal when interacting with sorcerers, he also has a childish side. The animation from MAPPA isn’t particularly revolutionary. However, the CG wasn’t overused or terribly rendered. The storytelling and plot might be too weird for some but the first episode of Dorohedoro has me captivated. I’m in.

Published by Jerrell Robertson