'Dorohedoro' Season 1 - Review

This was recommended by a WatchMojo "best of recent Anime" video on YouTube - and backed up by good reviews on Rotten Tomatoes. Using these criteria, I sampled both this and "Kengan Ashura." The latter is described by Netflix: "Ohma Tokita enters a hidden world where corporate disputes are settled in brutal gladiator bouts. Forget the money, he just wants to fight -- and win." I watched three episodes of that and all I got was secret power-up after power-up, as they went "OMG - he's channelling secret power X, we didn't even know you could do that" repeatedly. It got old fast. "Dorohedoro" on the other hand has some wonderfully crazy world-building, ideas, and characters going for it. It's still pretty silly, but I tend to enjoy learning about well constructed unusual worlds.

Based on the notoriously weird manga by Q Hayashida, our main character is Caiman. He's human - sort of. A sorcerer has turned his head into that of a lizard, and he has no memory of the event or his previous life. So he goes around grabbing sorcerers and stuffing their heads in his mouth so the guy inside him can see them and pass judgement (yup). One useful side effect of his lizard head is that sorcery no longer works on him because he already has a spell cast on him. His best friend is Nikaidō who runs a restaurant where Caiman frequently goes to eat gyoza (food - particularly gyoza - features heavily in the series).

We also become fairly familiar with the sorcerer En and his "family" - particularly sorcerers Shin and Noi, who are En's enforcers. They occasionally compete to see who can kill more people faster, and yet they're mostly portrayed as sympathetic characters. Although En isn't a nice guy at all. I should mention: this is an exceptionally bloody show. And for no particular reason (fan service I assume), Noi and Nikaidō are well endowed - and frequently scantily clad.

Not for everybody, but a lot of fun for the right crowd.