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This Week in Anime - Osamu Tezuka's Dororo Gets a New Ending




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DangerMouse



Joined: 25 Mar 2009
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 05, 2019 2:13 am Reply with quote
This was such an awesome show!!
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Color2413
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2019 1:44 pm Reply with quote
I'm surprised that this show only got one mention in the "Best and Worst of..." ratings from ANN's critics. I could easily have placed Dororo as "best of the season."
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nDroae



Joined: 26 May 2017
Posts: 195
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2019 7:13 pm Reply with quote
In the original show (haven't read the manga yet), it seemed that Daigo's deal was entirely about his rise to power, not about aiding the people of the land in any way. During the remake, I appreciated how that change helped make Hyakkimaru's brother Tahomaru much more sympathetic and tragic, and created a terrible dilemma for their mother. Toward the end I grew increasingly worried about how the changed situation would affect the outcome, but in the end I was satisfied.

Edit: Here's Daigo's entire prayer to the demons in episode 1 of the 1969 show. It's pure evil desire.
Quote:
Daigo: O 48 demon statues, grant me my wish. I, Daiho Kagemitsu, wish to rule this land. I want this entire country. Lend me your power. If you deliver this land to me, I will reward you with anything you might desire. Yes, I will give you my child, who will be born tomorrow. My child's eyes, nose, mouth, hands, feet... you may divide them among yourselves as you please!

[There is a flash of lightning, and Daigo's forehead is marked with the X.]

Daigo: I see... (laughs) are you telling me you will listen to my wish? (laughing) You say you will give me this land?
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Agent355



Joined: 12 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2019 6:23 pm Reply with quote
The ending was so incredibly frustrating! It was *this close* to being nearly perfect. I loved the final battle with Tahomaru. I loved that Tahomaru survived it! But then...he’s killed anyway?! Because he, Nui and Hyakkimaru’s mama *CHOOSE* to die in the fire?! Oh, come on! They all got their redemption; they could’ve survived to build the new world! In fact, Tahomaru would’ve been a great leader in the new world order built on peace and honest manpower. But, no, who gets to live: the unredeemable world’s worst dad Daigo (who should’ve at least considered suicide once he realized how his actions caused his whole family’s downfall)!

And if that wasn’t bad enough, then Hyakkimaru just takes off on his own without saying anything. Sure, going off on a lone journey of redemption is a trope, but — the whole show was about his journey, and how having Dororo at his side brought out the best in both of them. Why does he have to go off alone? What lessons can he only learn alone? The show doesn’t tell us. And now that he can talk, why can’t he communicate his need to be on his own to Dororo? Nothing. Ugh!

*Sigh* but my complaints aside, it was a good show overall. That Demon Mama horse was awesome! And the first OP, despite having the least appropriate lyrics, was lit. Just wish it handled a few characters better at the end, is all.
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nDroae



Joined: 26 May 2017
Posts: 195
PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:20 pm Reply with quote
Ha, yeah, agreed about the unnecessary deaths and the way they happened, though I was more frustrated that Tahomaru's servant-friends had to become tragedy-victims. They were two of the most likeable characters in the show. On the other hand, at least their deaths were logical, within the situation they were trapped in.

I don't know whether the original anime's ending is considered a spoiler: spoiler[the climax is a battle in which Hyakkimaru kills Daigo.] And then Hyakkimaru leaves without Dororo even seeing that he survived the fire. Hyakkimaru's internal monologue tells the viewer that "I don't want to be around anyone now," then Dororo quickly accepts that she needs to move on and live happily, so as not to sadden Hyakkimaru, who is "watching over us somewhere." Another major difference, though, is that in the original, Hyakkimaru is able to freely communicate from the beginning, using telepathy until his real voice returns. He's quite talkative, and I think it's fair to say his Dororo got to know him a lot better than the new Dororo was able to. Having that original Hyakkimaru leave may feel very different from this Hyakkimaru doing the same thing. It's difficult for me to judge, because having seen the original first obviously colored my viewing of the remake. (I don't think the situation here is similar, but your issue with Hyakkimaru's departure makes me think of Lindsay Ellis' recent Game of Thrones video, in which she suggests that the characters in the show changed so much from how they are in the book that forcing them to act out their intended book endings became unnatural.)

By the way, all of the original ending I described, from Hyakkimaru's monologue to Dororo's choice, takes place within 75 seconds at the very end. For 50 years, Dororo has been fairly considered to have had a rushed ending. It stuck with the monster-of-the-week format right through its penultimate episode. In fact, episode 25 of 26 is a silly story about a lazy beggar who has to keep a demon sealed in a hole in the ground by plugging it up with his butt, which a passing monk had turned into a sealing talisman. So it's ironic that some viewers (I'm thinking of MAL posts) felt that the remake's ending was also rushed. At least it wasn't as rushed as the original. Razz

The original had no hint (at least that I could detect) of possible romance between Hyakkimaru and Dororo, and absolutely no glimpse of them grown up. I loved that addition.
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Agent355



Joined: 12 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2019 9:13 pm Reply with quote
Thanks for the comparison. I read the original manga and saw the live-action movie, but it was years ago and I don’t remember the details. I haven’t seen the ‘60s anime or played the video game. I’m glad this version *has* an ending, I just felt that if they were changing who lives and who dies anyway, they should have kept the more sympathetic characters alive and killed off the least sympathetic character, namely Daigo.

I appreciated the glimpse of Hyakkimaru and Dororo as .older teens/young adults, and the implication that they would become a couple. I wish it hadn’t been as brief, but it was nice.
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nDroae



Joined: 26 May 2017
Posts: 195
PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2019 10:38 pm Reply with quote
Ah, cool. The manga is of course the truest text, I'd be referring to that if I'd read it.

I agree, really the main reason why I wasn't bothered much was that I'm pessimistic after seeing so many Japanese stories revel in tragic deaths. The ending of the Space Battleship Yamato 2010 live action movie always particularly sticks out in my mind. I probably would have bought a copy of that movie if it hadn't ended like that. Rolling Eyes

I was shocked and delighted that the jorogumo (spider-woman) episode got a happy ending. Nothing like that happened in the old show.

Edit: I neglected to mention, another change in the ending was that in the original ending, Hyakkimaru never actually said anything to his mother. She begs for his forgiveness, and asks him to call her "Haha" just once:



And then she immediately dies before he can say anything. They had met before, and he had rejected her, so it felt like she died without being certain whether he had accepted her as his mother or not. Getting that scene in the remake was another gain to offset the negatives.
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