Dororo Episode 15 Recap & Review

Episode 15, The Story of the Scene from Hell

This episode seem to have marked a low for the series in terms of animation quality. There was weird distant camera angles, coupled with no faces on the characters. The episode is weirdly inconsistent animation wise and was disappointing. After some research it appears that the episode was done by Osamu Kobayashi. He’s known for having ruined episode 4 of Gurren Lagann. This style change is dramatic and really just overall unappealing.

Anyway, it turns out that the nun and the children were sacrificed to demons. Sabame’s prosperity is like that of Daigo’s. The village is able to produce rice due to their willingness to offer the children to the demons. The weird demon baby is a collection of the spirits of the dead children. Hyakkimaru is of course driven to kill the moth demon, regardless of whether it will have a negative effect on the village.

At the end of this episode both Hyakkimaru and Dororo end up responsible for parts of the village being set on fire. After he kills the original moth demon he gets his spinal cord back. You would think this scene would be bloody but it was rather uneventful. Also due to the animation style I didn’t realize what happened at first. Blood would have made it more clear. When Dororo and Hyakkimaru return to the village it’s burnt down and many of the villagers are dead including Sabame.

I was so distracted by the animation I didn’t really get into this episode. Hyakkimaru seems to begin his downward spiral where killing demons is all he cares about. I’m going to assume that he will be tasked with saving lives or killing demons and choose the later. Meanwhile, Dororo and Hyakkimaru walk their separate ways, leaving Dororo to be found by Itachi and his men looking for Dororo’s half of the map. Overall, this episode was a bit of a disappointment. Hopefully, the rest of the season will return to a higher quality animation.

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Dororo Episode 14 Recap & Review

The non-demons, the old nun and the baby

Episode 2, The Story of Sabame

We get an explanation as to what the map on Dororo’s back is. Or at least we kinda get the explanation. We could assume that Dororo had the map placed on his back at some point but he doesn’t seem to have any recollection. What we’re reminded of is the insane poverty that Dororo had to live with. The reason that he didn’t notice the map was that he had NEVER had a warn bath before. Biwamaru brings up a problem he sees. With a wider “range of choices,” he asks what happens to them when Hyakkimaru gains his body. This introduces a conflict that will come at that point. Would Hyakkimaru and Dororo stay together when Hyakkimaru gets his body restored.

Moth and caterpillar demons

Biwamaru presents a conflicting choice, Dororo can use the wealth he has OR they can “destroy the land of Daigo” and get Hyakkimaru’s body back. I think that Dororo would either give the money away or leave it hidden. While, walking on the road Dororo encounters odd looking beings. Hyakkimaru notes that they’re not demons so he doesn’t seem to care. The odd “baby” carries Dororo around. The ghostly woman points to the ground at a burned down house. It turns out that it’s oil, hinting that it was burned down. When a man shows up the baby disappeared. The man invites them to his house, he’s the Sabame, Lord of the land.

Sabame and the moth demon woman

Sabame has very noticeable bright green eyes that feel dead. Dororo is frightened by him who thinks he’s a monster. Hyakkimaru isn’t sure. Regardless, Hyakkimaru and Dororo enjoy a meal at Sabame’s house. He tells them the “story” of what happened to the nunnery. The nun abused the orphans that were their, then they died when lightning hit the roof and set a fire. Neither Hyakkimaru or Dororo believes this story. At night they are attacked by a caterpillar demon. It escapes, when a moth demon arrives. That moth demon then arrives by Sabame side and transforms into a human-like woman. This episode has a weird ending. It seems like it should have a second part to it. However, the title suggests that this is it. That said, it could be an error in translation or the story will return to this arc later.

Dororo Episode 13 – The Story of the Blank-faced Buddha

That statue carver

Dororo has been on break for a week. It has returned with Hyakkimaru now talking in fun sentences. He remembers the events of the previous episode. Dororo nags him with pleas, asking him to rest. We find that Oku has survived her suicide attempt. We then get to witness the latest demon dragging a man. The demon seems to have been taken on the form of his wife. Placing him on a stone, with a statue that literally slices his face off. The statue then forms the face of the victim.

The demonic statue

Dororo is drawn to the waterfall, where he sees the demonic statue. The demon woman from before arrives. According to Dororo she looks just like her mother. However, when Hyakkimaru “sees” her he’s unable to tell if she’s a demon. This is very interesting considering that we see Okaka help kill a man. Okaka tells them the story of the statues carver. Dororo claims that Okaka not only looks like her mother, but sounds like her as well. She asks to call Okaka “mama.” Okaka reveals that she’s the carver, resurrected by the statue, as Dororo fall asleep.

The map on the back of Dororo

Okaka takes Hyakkimaru. Dororo awakens and chases after them. He prevents Okaka from killing him. The fight between the statue and Hyakkimaru was boring. However, that’s not the real point of this episode. Despite Dororo’s age, I found it difficult to believe that she would really think that Okaka was her mother. I don’t know. I wasn’t really emotionally invested, even though I felt they wanted me to be. Anyway, they head to a hot spring where they run into the priest, Biwa-Hoshi. While there it is revealed that Dororo has a map on her back. That of course is the most important part of this episode to be answered in a later episode. Also, why hasn’t Hyakkimaru gain an organ after killing another demon?

Dororo Episode 12 Review – The Story of Banmon, Part 2

The Priest realizing that their are too many demons

Hyakkimaru of course doesn’t recognize his father, but Diago recognizes him. Diago asks why “his half-born demon child survived.” He orders his soldiers to kill Hyakkimaru, and they fire arrows at him. He escapes into the forest. However, the words of Diago echoes in his mind. Meanwhile, Dororo and Sukeroku are captured by soldiers. While in jail, Sukeroku reveals that the entire village was destroyed. Dororo sees a small hole in the cave and decides that he’s going to escape through it.

Hyakkimaru battles Tahomaru

Tahomaru finally confronts his mother. His mother says that “she has never forgotten he first child.” Diago explains that he needed to do for the “people.” I’m surprise that Tahomaru is so upset at his parents behavior. He calls out his father for only caring about himself. They are interrupted by Hyakkimaru. When he “sees” his “family” the aura’s of his brother and mother are pure. Diago of course has been tainted. Diago sends his men after Hyakkimaru, when Tahomaru interjects his father asks him if he’s willing to sacrifice the land.

Oku stabs herself

Diago argument seems to work for now. Dororo arrives and tells Hyakkimaru that Sukeroku is in danger. A jailer informs Sukeroku and the other prisoners that they are going to be killed. War becomes a bigger threat. Tahomaru and his handlers arrive in the temple. The Asakura kill the hostages and the war begins. On the battlefield all the principle characters arrive. Dororo, Hyakkimaru, Diago and Tahomaru are all present. Tahomaru begrudgingly accepts his father’s decision and calls Hyakkimaru a demon.

The statue green aura dissipates

As they fight, Diago seems pleased. Meanwhile, Dororo tries to save Sukeroku. They’re saved by Hyakkimaru who separates himself from Tahomaru when he breaks his sword and cuts his eye. Oku, Hyakkimaru’s mother arrives to asks for forgiveness. She proclaims that she “cannot save him,” and “sacrifices” herself by stabbing herself. Ironically, as Hyakkimaru loses his mother, Sukeroku is reunited with his. This episode made it very clear that the cost of restoring Hyakkimaru’s body will become a theme.

Dororo Episode 11 Review – The Story of Banmon, Part 1

Hyakkimaru and Tahoumaru finally meet

Hyakkimaru and Tahoumaru finally meet, after the former saves one of Tahoumaru’s subordinated from death. After he pays Dororo, he tells them where to find the land of Daigo. Tahoumaru learns Hyakkimaru’s name before they leave. The old blind priest is there and he plans on going to the “Hall of Hell,” to seek the truth. Meanwhile, Dororo and Hyakkimaru head to the Fort Banmon, built on the site of a village Daigo destroyed. They find a wall where Asakura “pin bodies of their enemies to the wall.”

Hyakkimaru’s aura

While, there they meet a survivor of the village, Sukeroku. He is hoping to reunite with his family. The problem is he will be killed by the Asakura sentries waiting. Of course, Dororo and Hyakkimaru are going to help him. Elsewhere, Tahoumaru’s bodyguards inform Daigo, of Hyakkimaru. He quickly realizes that his son survived. Predictably, he concludes that he must kill Hyakkimaru in order to maintain his power and prosperity. Tahoumaru overhears the conversation. He learns the truth from a demented woman that the “demons ate everything.”

Nine tails fox

When it becomes night, a lot of nine tail foxes appear. Hyakkimaru and Dororo fight them off long enough for Sukeroku to run away. Dororo chases after him only to find out that he’s been captured by the Asakura. The nine tails demon foxes are chased away by the arrows from Daigo soldiers, leaving Hyakkimaru to face his father. The potential conflict or maybe I should say the inevitable conflict between Daigo and Hyakkimaru, has finally started. He clearly wants to kill him, but the I question if this is the moment he tries. He could attempt to gain the trust of Hyakkimaru then kill him, especially considering his fighting ability.

The statue get’s another crack

However, it’s doubtful that he has the patience. What is most interesting is the role, Tahoumaru and his mother will play. Hyakkimaru’s desire for vengeance was seen in the previous and it wasn’t pretty. The old priest (Biwamaru) noticed that his aura had changed and predicted that Hyakkimaru had killed humans. It seems that killing human has a more negative effect on one’s aura regardless of how evil they might be. All I know is that the future of this series is probably going to get darker than before.

Dororo Episode 9 Review – The Story of the Merciless

Dororo’s father Hibukuro

Dororo becomes ill and passes out. Hyakkimaru searches for someone to help him. He’s able to say some words, but no one could or would help. A nun arrives and takes Hyakkimaru and Dororo to a temple for treatment. Dororo remembers his childhood. His mother, Ojiya and father, Hibukuro were members of a group of bandits. They regularly came into conflict with samurai. Hibukuro second in command, Itachi runs afoul of Hibukuro, who threaten to kill him.

Dororo falls ill

Itachi betrays Hibukuro, taking his men and cripples him. Dororo’s family is left to raid dead bodies on the battlefields in search of supplies. Dororo witness a legs less solider, cannibalizing a dead one. Hibukuro is recognized by some samurai and is killed before the eyes of Ojiya and Dororo. They bury his body. They begin to starve. Hearing that the samurai are handing out food, they find that Itachi is doing well since his betrayal. When they begin to running out of food, Ojiya runs to the head of the line.

Ojiya burning her hands

She doesn’t have a bowl, so she sticks out her hand. Ojiya burns her hands and gives Dororo some food. Unfortunately, she collapses from starvation and dies. It is revealed that Dororo is actually a girl, as the nun accidentally reveals this to Hyakkimaru. I’m not sure why Dororo’s gender matters other than typical sexism that must exist in this world. Regardless, we get to see that Daigo has learned that Hyakkimaru is alive.

The nun revealing that Dororo’s a girl

Eventually, Daigo and Hyakkimaru must come into conflict. As he gains his limbs, he simultaneously causes Daigo to lose some of his power. Of course, this is the reverse of what Daigo did to his son. It seems predictable that Tahomaru will grow to hate his brother because his mother still longs for her first child or at least try to kill him for his fathers approval. However, Dororo could surprise me with some twist.

Daigo learning about Hyakkimaru survival

Dororo Episode 8 Review – The Story of Saru

Saru

Nokosaregumo the forsaken cloud

A dark cloud arrives over a village pouring “ashe rain,” a villager suggest they prepare a bride for sacrifice. It’s called Nokosaregumo, a massive flying centipede demon that has tormenting the village. It would kill the entire village. At some point the villagers decided to sacrifice a “bride.” Once it consumed her it would leave the village alone. Saru is the an orphan that was once saved by the bride that’s to be sacrificed. He teams up with Dororo to save her.

Big Sister sacrificing herself

Not a sacrifice, a volunteer

When Saru arrives to save his “sister,” he informs him that she decided to sacrifice herself for the sake of the village and Saru. The demon arrives, spreading a black mist that blinds Hyakkimaru. Unable to see, he’s rendered useless in this battle. The demon tries to eat Saru, but his sister pushes him out of the way and ends up swallowed whole. Nokosaregumo escapes unscathed.

Dororo and Saru teaming up

Dororo and Hyakkimaru vs Nokosaregumo

Dororo and Saru plan to defeat the demon by luring it into the sunlight. Dororo pretends to be a bride and is attacked. Saru shoots a fire arrow causing a big explosion. The demon recovers. Hyakkimaru uses the sound of arrows hitting the demon to pinpoint it’s location. Dororo attaches himself to Nokosaregumo, using his voice to help Hyakkimaru find the demon. Dororo gets knocked out. Hyakkimaru begins calling for Dororo, who awakens. Hyakkimaru and Dororo end up defeating the demon as they realize that Saru’s sister is still alive.


This episode is a departure from the usual Dororo episodes. While the story of the demon wasn’t that interesting, and Saru’s sad childhood is typical for this series, Hyakkimaru being almost useless was new. This is the first episode that Dororo took the lead in battle. Hyakkimaru ended up doing the slaying in the end, but he needed Dororo to accomplish it. Another difference, this episode ended on a happy note. Saru and sister reunited and are going to live together ending both their loneliness. Hyakkimaru gains the ability to smell and finally says his first word, Dororo.

Dororo and Hyakkimaru teaming up

Dororo Episode 7 Review – The Story of the Jorogumo Silk Spider

Dororo tickling Hyakkimaru

Dororo encounter a spider demon in the process of eating a man that seem infatuated with her. Hyakkimaru fights it off. However, she escapes when she webs Hyakkimaru to a tree. It turns out that the spider demon has been kidnapping the villagers. The demon wraps herself in a cocoon of web and turns herself into a normal appearing woman. She is found to by a man named Yajiro. He gives her the name Ohagi and feeds her rice. Dororo meets Yajiro, who tells him that a reward has been posted for the demon.

Yajiro finding Ohagi

Yajiro is forced to keep working in terrible conditions. A man died during his job, Ohagi asks if it’s “worth working to death.” Yajiro captures a cockroach and lets it go. Ohagi asks why Yajiro saved it. He says he believes that “life is life,” and human and bugs are the same. Ohagi struggles to cure her hunger. She clearly likes Yajiro and is unwilling to eat him. Ohagi appears emaciated and Yajiro hopes to help her later. Meanwhile, Dororo and Hyakkimaru are hungry and eat flowers.

Ohagi and Yajiro deciding to leave together

Hyakkimaru and Dororo encounter Ohagi and Yajiro at night. As Dororo tells him that she’s a monster, he reveals that he’s the kidnapper. He’s been helping villagers escape this miserable village. They are attacked by soldiers looking to capture Yajiro. Ohagi fights them, eating two of them. She and Yajiro escape, however, they are eventually caught by the soldiers. Yajiro is hit by several arrows, Ohagi attacks the soldiers. She transforms into her spider form, but unlike other episodes of Dororo she escapes with Yajiro, instead of being killed by Hyakkimaru.

Ohagi fighting the soldiers

This episode marks a departure from the others. We were use to evil demons being irredeemable monsters that needed to be killed however, in this episode we meet a demon with a heart. Or at least she liked one human. Ohagi’s aura marked this progression. As she changed so did the color of her aura, from red to orange. Of course because Dororo never remains in the same place characters are quickly developed, then discarded. The romance between Ohagi and Yajiro feels premature, but they were never going to get more than episode to explore their relationship. Regardless, Dororo continues to play with our expectations.

Dororo Episode 6 Review – The Story of the Moriko Song, Part 2

Dreams of Rice Paddies

After the last episode I can’t say that I’m hopeful that this on will be happier. Dororo leaves Mio stunned at what he just witnessed. He quickly runs into Hyakkimaru and the Old Priest as they return from their battle against the demon. Mio returns with food for the children, she is clearly bruised as she helps Hyakkimaru. Tahomaru gets some attention this episode. He wants to go to war, certain that he would “crush,” the Sakai clan. He seems to care a great deal about his mother view of him. Tahomaru feels that his mother doesn’t care for him. While, his mother never was cruel to him, she paid him little to no attention.

Tahomaru demands to fight

Hyakkimaru recovers, as he remembers his encounter with the demon. Mio tries to soothe him with her song. The Priest warns Dororo that Hyakkimaru may not be as “good.” Mio is insecure about her “soul.” Her “job” has made her feel dirty and she’s ashamed of herself. This belief is unsurprising. Dororo and Mio have a conversation regarding her job. He tells her that the “one,” job his mother didn’t was prostitution. A few days later Hyakkimaru fights the demon again, as soldiers arrive to find the children. Hyakkimaru succeeds in killing the demon.

Hyakkimaru’s new “leg”

My lack of hope was well founded as Mio’s using of both sides of the war comes back to haunt her. She and the children are massacred. As Mio begins to die, she sings as she always had when dealing with a terrible situation. Still unable to see, her song reveals to Hyakkimaru that she’s dying. He becomes enraged and slaughters the soldiers. Unable to speak, Hyakkimaru growls like an animal, covered in blood Dororo fears that he will become the “monster,” the Priest suggest may lurk inside. As the temple burns down, Hyakkimaru hugs Mio’s death body, as he says her name, his first word.

Hyakkimaru kills the demon

Dororo is a series that leans towards the darker end of the spectrum. Many series seem to be heading in this direction. However, Dororo has layers underneath the carnage. Take the song that Mio sings. At first it’s just a pretty song, but then it becomes the only sound that Hyakkimaru can tolerate. It turns out that it also serves as a distraction from the horrors she experienced in life. Finally, the song becomes the triggers for the rage that Hyakkimaru displays. The song ends up humanizing her. The question becomes what will the consequences of letting the solider go. He will surely spread the word of the warrior with no arms right? Daigo already suspects somethings up with the demons. Would he put two and two together?

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Dororo Episode 5 Review: The Story of the Moriko Song

Hyakkimaru meets Mio

Hyakkimaru is having trouble with his new found hearing. He’s able to hear all the animals surrounding and it’s overwhelming him. To Dororo it’s quiet. It’s remarkable that something that we assume would be great for Hyakkimaru, his hearing, turns out to be a bit of a burden. It made sense that regaining his pain receptors would cause him trouble, not his hearing. Hyakkimaru and Dororo are attacked by a flying demon that instantly reminded me of Fearow from Pokemon.

The priest killing the flying demon

Hyakkimaru manages to damage the bird with his arms, but doesn’t manage to kill. However, the old priest arrives to deliver the death blow. Dororo informs the priest that Hyakkimaru has been having trouble with his hearing. He plans to find some medicine in the big town across the river. The priest informs him of the war that’s brewing, making it too dangerous to travel. The Sakai clan has betrayed and ally, resulting in war.

Hyakkimaru charging at the demon

When the morning arrives, Hyakkimaru wanders off and meets a young woman in the river. The girls name is Mio, she lives with other orphan children. Many of these kids don’t have there limbs, having to result in using wood tied to them with bandages. Mio begins to sing while heading out to get food, Hyakkimaru finds her voice to be pleasant. The old priest finds a better home for the children, out of the way of the war. The problem, a demon “owns”” the land. Hyakkimaru quickly heads to kill it.

The demon takes Hyakkimaru’s leg

Mio decides that she’s going to work for the enemy as well. Dororo plans on going with her. Meanwhile, Hyakkimaru and the old priest face off against the demon. It’s pincers shoot out of the ground and it begins to spin, dragging them both towards it. As they battle the demon, Dororo finds out what Mio does for a living, prostitution. After the battle with the demon Hyakkimaru suffers a major consequence, he loses the bottom of his legs. He can finally be heard, screaming in agony.

Dororo watching Mio with two soldiers

The ending of this episode is haunting. To be honest I instantly knew what Mio did to get food. A pretty young girl during war really could only offer so much. This episode wasn’t without it’s kind moments though. The orphan kids creating a family and Mio sacrifice, along with her beautiful voice. Speaking of sacrifice, Hyakkimaru put his life on the line for the orphans.

For a series that focuses on him retrieving his limbs, it never occurred to me that he would lose one he got back. A few thing didn’t make sense. How did Hyakkimaru know what the priest and the others were talking about? He can’t possible understand language yet. Any way each time he gets a limb or body part back it costs him something else. This show seems to value showing the good with the bad.

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