Dororo Episode 8: The Story of Saru

I feel like MAPPA is spoiling us now. Another episode with a happy ending that had me smiling and going “Awwww!!!!” at the end. Honestly, that ending had me like that one meme pic of Snoop Dog holding up a paper that says “This is the cutest shit I’ve ever seen”. But it looks like this’ll be short lived as the next episode preview is going to be all about Dororo’s backstory and I know I’ll cry for sure.

The premise of this episode reminded me of Okami (great game~) with the female sacrifice to the large monster so the village won’t be destroyed, though human sacrifices are seen plenty of times throughout history in all cultures so this instance isn’t unique. Like the show has done before, they immediately hinted at Hyakkimaru getting his nose/sense of smell when Dororo asked if he could even smell the terrible stench around them. Though they did kind of bait us possibly getting his sight, but in the end it was his nose. As they walk through the mountains next to geysers and sulfur pits, they notice a wedding procession and a boy wearing wolf skin coming out of nowhere and shooting arrows at the procession. Dororo tries to stop him but he explains why he’s so angry. For years now, there’s a monster called “Nokosaregumo” that harasses the village. In order to stop this monster and its black cloud from devouring them, the village people would put up a bride as a human sacrifice in order to appease it. But in this instance, the bride is the boy’s older sister. Hearing about this monster, Dororo decides to take advantage of this moment and makes a deal with Saru. He talks big about Hyakkimaru being an expert monster-killer and if they kill the monster, he wants to be compensated for it. It’s even more enticing when Saru shows Dororo a tiny piece of gold, saying he even had more.

The rescue of his onee-chan wasn’t successful though. The black cloud coming from the giant centipede monster was also part of its aura so all Hyakkimaru could see was red all around him. It was interesting seeing how his vision actually gave him a disadvantage this time around since him spotting demons have always been very easy for him. This situation with the centipede might not happen again, but he learned to work around his disadvantage.

When Hyakkimaru was throwing rocks the whole night, I thought at first he was frustrated at himself. That thought was cemented in me when he heard Saru crying for his sister. I thought he felt pretty guilty about messing up and vented by throwing rocks. But his throwing rocks was him training himself to get used to using sound as a way to “see”. Doing that with the rocks in turn helped him find the centipede with the arrows he shot, which was very smart. It also helped that Dororo ended up helping him too.

It’s very cool watching Hyakkimaru adapt slowly to his new senses. He’s already come a long way from a few episodes ago when he got his hearing, where every single sound was painful for him. Last episode he was able to communicate with Dororo in his own way and pinpoint Ohagi’s footsteps, and in this episode used his hearing to help him fight and see. And not just his hearing, but he’s using his voice. He still can’t properly speak but he tried his best communicating with Dororo by calling out to him by yelling. And it worked! Watching him adapt and working with Dororo, because of their close bond, just makes me so happy and warm! It was such a joy to watch. Plus, the fight scene looked like something out of a video game. Kind of crazy but cool to watch.

I really liked this short friendship between Dororo and Saru. They’re both such young children and yet they act so strong, and while admirable it is it’s still such a sad thing. I was pretty surprised Saru didn’t scream at Dororo and Hyakkimaru for not saving his sister, especially with how high and mighty Dororo was before when talking about his aniki. I thought it would have been the normal reaction after he got a false sense of hope. But he was strangely calm and was still intent on killing the centipede monster and both kids were badass (and crazy) enough to handle it themselves. Saru’s backstory was very sad, showing how shitty people can be again. His parents died when he was very young and he grew up on his own, hunting monsters and living wherever. For some reason people didn’t like him and always drove him away, making him hate on humans until his older sister appeared. Though she’s not his real sister, but she was the only one to show him love and care and so they became close. Saru tells Dororo that even though he calls her his sister, the love she gives him is like the love and kindness his mother showed him before she died. It’s like his onee-chan was his mother in another life.

My baby T_T

This ties in with Dororo once again. As Saru cries for his sister, Dororo is also seen crying. Probably because he feels bad he couldn’t help Saru, but also because he got memories of his mother again. Dororo’s mentioned his mother before and we’ve seen him cry for her before. This ties in perfectly because we’re going to be getting Dororo’s backstory next episode, which I’ve been dying for. Dororo is such a fun character and is incredibly sweet, but we don’t know much about him so I’m super excited for next week. And scared because we know things won’t end well because, duh, he’s an orphan.

While there were small telling moments, there was a happy ending and Hyakkimaru got his nose/smell back! Like other times, he got his sense back in a “negative” way but it was something trivial of smelling sulfur and it was balanced out later when he smelled the sweet scenet of the flower. So good times all around. Hyakkimaru finally said Dororo’s name in the end too and my heart basically exploded, and Dororo looked so touched. Just…awww!! I’ve been waiting for this!!

The voice direction for Hyakkimaru is phenomenal. He’s hardly spoken but whenever he does, there’s this rawness in it that’s so fitting. He doesn’t really know how to use his voice but he tries to communicate, like his yells to Dororo during the fight. And the way he said Dororo’s name wasn’t perfect. It sounded a little slurred and awkward, and really he sounded like when a deaf person tries to speak. It’s extremely well done and such a fantastic detail, so good on the voice directors and Hyakkimaru’s actor. I can’t wait to hear Hyakkimaru speak more so I can watch his speech evolve.

Body Parts:

  1. Right arm
  2. Left arm
  3. Right leg
  4. Left leg
  5. Eyes
  6. Ears
  7. Nerves
  8. Skin
  9. Voice
  10. Nose
  11. Taste?
  12. ???

Berry

Unfortunately still a weeb

2 thoughts on “Dororo Episode 8: The Story of Saru

  1. This is another fully anime-original episode, although I don’t know if ALL the originals will be rainbows and happiness, the calm before the bleak storm of source content…

    The series will have 24 episodes bundled in 2 Bluray boxes.
    https://twitter.com/LiveChart_me/status/1100008778278174720?s=19

    Since Hyakki only has about 6 more body parts to get back, I assume there’ll be a slowdown in parts collection from now on.

    1. 24 episodes confirmed! fist pump The calm before the storm of content will probably be the last here as the next ep. preview looks like it’ll go back to the bleakness. The cute wholesomeness was good while it lasted…
      And yeah, now that we’re confirmed to be only a third into the show and Hyakkimaru has half of his body parts back, I think we’ll be getting more movement in the plot instead of body parts. I think we’re gonna get more of Daigo and Tahoumaru soon.

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