Dororo Episode 11: The Story of the Banmon, Part 1

This cliffhanger has killed me and I am shocked that we would get this family reunion so early. This type of stuff is usually saved for the last few episodes of the second half but here we are dammit. So much can happen and it can happen in any way, I can’t even imagine how next week will go.

After the events from last week, Tahoumaru confronts both Hyakkimaru and Dororo and thanks them for saving Hyogo, as well as all of them. Dororo being Hyakki’s personal hypegirl¬†(more than once this episode) brags about them going after big demons and slaying them, showing off how easy it was for Hyakki to defeat the crab. Hyakkimaru, however, stares at Tahoumaru and notices how strange his soul is. It’s the same kind of gray as everyone else but has the same distortedness of his own. Which makes me wonder if Hyakkimaru even knows what his own soul looks like? If he did, then seeing Tahoumaru’s would have sparked even more curiosity and confusion, but he also would have been able to make the connection. But even with his curiosity he doesn’t act out on it. Learning of his blindness, plus his prosthetic arms lines up with the info Tahoumaru heard. Before heading out, Tahoumaru asks for Hyakkimaru’s name and they part ways but Hyakkimaru looks back wondering of his strange soul.

The two are in Daigo territory and it’s a nice change of pace to see them in a busy town, now with money (yay!). Hyakkimaru looked really interested and curious of everything, which was pretty cute. Dororo was just as much and grabbed Hyakki’s hand to watch a play about Daigo. This was a good scene to show how people see Daigo, which is a brave man that slew the demons and brought riches to the land. The way they painted him to be such a hero was hilarious since we know he didn’t do shit. This whole time though I was freaking out that Hyakkimaru was learning about his father, in his father’s land, without even knowing Daigo is his father. Pretty crazy.

They notice the wandering old man is there and Dororo gives him an update to what happened with Mio and the children. He explains he’s going to check what’s blessing the land and points to what he believes is where the demons defeated are enshrined, which turns out to be the Hall of Hell. Before leaving, he can tell that Hyakkimaru killed humans as well based on his soul and tells him to be careful. Which I feel might be foreshadowing and that makes me nervous.

The two catch wind of a demon at the Banmon and head over there and meet a boy named Sukeroku, who was separated from his parents when the battle between Daigo and the Asakuras occurred. During the day, Asakura troops watch the one wall left standing and kills anyone passing it. There are rumors that the Goddess of Mercy resides in the wall, and the troops that get killed and pinned onto the wall sully her wishes. At night, the demons attracted to his appear. Hyakkimaru sees the evil aura of the wall and points out how strong it is. They sit together with Sukeroku and make a deal to help him defeat the demon so he can see his parents again. That very night, Hyakkimaru fends off against what appears to be many fox spirits. But Sukeroku seeing this opportunity runs off to Asakura land to find his parents, which was a stupid decision but Hyakkimaru tells Dororo to go after him. But of course they both get caught, and things go crazy in the end when Hyakki goes up against the true form of the demon but gets saved by none other than Daigo.

Here I thought that the mother had no idea that Daigo sacrificed their first born child for the prosperity of the land, but she actually does! I was really shocked that she knew and basically accepted this for 16 years, even though she diligently prayed to the statue every day. I’m surprised that she doesn’t hold more animosity towards Daigo after having to lose her innocent baby and suffering all this time. Probably because she’s a woman and all she really had to do was provide an heir, which she did, she can’t really speak out against him. However, I will commend her for speaking out her thoughts about Daigo: Did he really make a deal with the demons to save the land and the well-being of his people, or did he do it all for his ego to steal land and become a great lord? She has more of a conscious than Daigo and believes that they’re being punished for what they did. Even though I don’t think she should feel that way about herself since she never agreed to it. She’s upset and believes they should be punished, but at least she’s happy that Hyakkimaru is alive. But this doesn’t sit well with Daigo and dismisses her, but Tahoumaru heard everything.

He goes out into the city to find Hyakkimaru but can’t, until he runs into a strange woman singing to herself about a demon baby. When she had seen Hyakkimaru earlier, she panicked and ran off but she reacted in the same way when seeing Tahoumaru. It turns out that she was one of the midwives from back then and what happened during the birth traumatized her, and when Tahoumaru questions her she breaks down and tells him everything. A baby born with absolutely nothing, eaten by the demons by the demon’s curse, and now he’s come back to bring the curse back to Daigo’s land. It all correlates with what Tahoumaru’s been hearing, and I’m sure that soon he’ll learn the whole truth very very soon. I questioned this before but again I have to wonder, how will Tahoumaru react when he learns everything? With how the midwife worded it, she made it sound like Hyakkimaru is someone to be feared and that he’ll bring ruin and destruction. And she’s not totally wrong, but Hyakkimaru isn’t a bad person. Will he get the wrong idea and go against Hyakkimaru, or will he sympathize with him once he learns every single detail? The OP showed the two brothers fighting, and next episode’s preview shows this but we don’t really know the context of their fight. I want so bad for Tahoumaru to be understanding, but I just have a bad feeling. Especially since the OP shows Tahoumaru without an eye. I’m just extremely nervous.

This family reunion escalates when Daigo appears in the end in front of Hyakkimaru, Hyakkimaru noting Daigo’s soul. Which actually looks like his, which makes me wonder why? Is it because they both have the demon’s curse, or is it because they both have killed humans? And what the old man said, as he kept warning Hyakkimaru about killing people, is that foreshadowing that Hyakki will kill again? Who and why? His anger in the next episode preview again makes me nervous, even more so when at the end of this episode the statue of the Goddess of Mercy cracked. Apparently this statue protected Hyakkimaru when he was a baby, so does the statue cracking mean that something bad will happen to Hyakkimaru? Or will Hyakkimaru do something bad? Or will he get protected again? God I hope it’s the latter.

Next episode, I think the truth will finally be revealed to all. Hyakkimaru will meet his mother, he’ll face off against Tahoumaru, it looks like Daigo will actually spare Hyakkimaru but something will happen that’ll anger Hyakkimaru and I hope it won’t end with him killing others like before. Will someone important to him die? And here’s the thing, I’ve been talking about how Tahoumaru would react to finding out the truth, but really how would Hyakkimaru himself react to the truth? How can he accept what his father did to him, to the life he had to lead and being separated from his family? How much will the truth change his life? I’m loving this more expressive and talkative Hyakkimaru, but I’m always afraid for him. And Dororo! This is all such a mess and it’ll all be revealed soon I think.

Aww man, the anxiety is getting to me bad. Things have escalated so quickly unexpectedly and I’m extremely excited and nervous what the outcome of all this will be. And we still have another cour left, so honestly where can it go from here?


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4 Responses

  1. zztop says:

    The anime’s now covering the manga’s Banmon arc.
    Not only was the arc a turning point to reintroduce Hyakki’s family back to him, it was also a very bleak storyline otherwise. (No spoilers.)

    Manga differences from the episode include:
    – Instead of going through town, Dororo and Hyakki stumble across the Banmon first and decide to set up camp for the night.
    – The crazy ex-midwife is original; the blind monk didn’t appear in the arc.
    – This was Daigo’s main reintroduction into the story after the 1st manga chapter. Prior to that no mentions were openly made about his lands or what he was up to.

    On the blind monk’s warning on killing, I think he’s warning him to not let violent urges overpower his humanity and control his actions.
    Otherwise Hyakki’s going to end up like Tanosuke, who was still controlled by his desires even though he’d lost the evil sword.

    For all of Daigo’s survival talk, I think it was always his ambition for power and legacy that drives his actions, over true concerns for his people’s wellbeing.
    Considering how little remorse he’s shown, he’s the type who’d likely say the cost for power was justified, and he’d do it again if he could.

    PS. Dororo’s identity as a girl was less obvious in the manga; Tezuka’s design was more boyish.–mozilla-shigeru.jpg

    No hints were made until the end, and the reveal was more of a sudden “BTW you’re a girl, I sensed it all along” from Hyakki.
    The live movie was more obvious, since Dororo was played by actress Shibasaki Kou.

    • Berry says:

      “bleak storyline”
      fek ;_;

      That’s why I felt the blind monk’s warning could be foreshadowing for whatever happens next. Something might happen that will test Hyakkimaru’s control and humanity again judging by the preview.

      Yup, it’s that lack of remorse from the very beginning when he saw baby Hyakki which cemented that he only cared about his own ambitions. I see people saying that Daigo may not be the embodiment of evil, and to some extent they’re right but he’s still evil and despicable for sacrificing his own son and STILL not feeling any remorse after all this time. Honestly, fuck this dude. With the way he responded to his wife, you’re right, he probably would do it again.

      That’s…an interesting way to reveal it. Not the best way. ^^;

      • zztop says:

        Also, Sukeroku’s voiced by Naruto’s Japanese voice actress, Takeuchi Junko.

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