While it builds to a conclusion that might be deemed unsatisfactory, Dorohedoro is a solid, blood-soaked anime offering that earns its obvious desire for a follow-up.
This review of Dorohedoro (Netflix) is spoiler-free.
Netflix has a winner on its hands with new original anime Dorohedoro, a 12-part medley of violence, eccentricity, and class-conscious world-building that bows out unflatteringly begging for a sequel but does a fine job of making a case for one throughout its run.
Snappy in terms of both its dialogue and its dinosaur-headed hero, Caiman (Wataru Takagi), an amnesiac with a particular grudge against the oppressive Sorcerers who meddle with the lives and biology of the citizens in the decrepit “Hole”, Dorohedoro does an admirable job of fleshing out its world and cast while maintaining a steady drip-feed of dramatic secrets and blood-soaked violence.
There’s plenty to like here in terms of characterization, world-building, and plotting, even if some of the mysteries are necessarily left unresolved. The CG animation, too, works well in its bloody broad strokes, and while narratively and aesthetically Dorohedoro lacks a degree of subtlety, you can’t help but imagine that’s very much the point.
Perhaps, though, that subtlety is to be found in the characterization, which treats figures on both sides of the class divide to rounded personalities or at least entertainingly eccentric traits. While Caiman is inarguably the lead, the focus is divided evenly enough that your favorite character could conceivably be anyone.
Dorohedoro’s long-term success on Netflix will depend, one assumes, on how people take to its wide-open ending, which might not work as a satisfying conclusion. Whether that puts people off or entices them to the follow-up remains to be seen, but all the requisite elements are here for a well-liked original anime that’ll attract an enthusiastic fan base over the coming weeks.
We are fast becoming the number one independent website for streaming coverage. Please support Ready Steady Cut today. Secure its future — we need you!
Jonathon is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has been Senior Editor and Chief Critic of the outlet since 2017.