You have noticed a new dere type that has become popular in recent anime. These characters tend to be moe, clumsy girls that have a knack for tripping over air and running into people. They are known as dojikko, and they are starting to overtake the yandere and dandere types within the community.
What is a dojikko?
In a literal sense, dojikko means “clumsy child.” As an archetype, they refer to cute and clumsy characters. They will always mess up a task that they are given, but their moe factor leads to viewers finding their failures endearing instead of annoying.
Dojikko characters tend to have a sunny view of the world, and can range from being super hyper to shy. It’s common for writers take the genki (hyper) or dandere (shy) type and a dash of clumsiness to add a layer of adorableness. Genki and dandere aren’t the only base types. You can have a genius character who fails in social situations, a princely character who is really unrefined, or a general ditz.
Here is a common introduction; a girl could be carrying too many books while walking to class. This will lead them to running into the main character, spilling their contents on the floor while landing on their back. Dojikko can also be a maid or a butler who spills tea on their master or are constantly breaking dishes.
The clumsy nature of the character can even lead to ecchi moments. A slip into a puddle or falling chest first into the face of a character are common scenarios.
Why are they popular?
Now that we know that basics of a dojikko, we can look at why the type has become so popular!
Dojikko characters are a fusion dere type. Like explained earlier, it’s common for the genki or dandere types to be used as a base. These two characters are popular enough on their own, but giving them some clumsy moments adds a layer of moe.
That brief moment of helplessness or innocence is what endears fans to a dojikko. There is no malice at play when the spill a hot drink on someone, and you can’t help but feel a little bad when you seem them trip over nothing.
Another factor is their personality. Even with a dandere base, dojikko characters keep smiling and are determined despite their failures. Their positive personality can lead to several jokes about how they are lucky to know how to breathe or can lead into more fun moments.
Despite their clumsy nature, dojjiko aren’t completely useless. They will have a special skill (like Kirin’s combat ability) or offer moments of clarity (Aqua’s sometimes useful perception). Because of this, they aren’t doormats or useless punching bags.
It’s really about combining the warm feeling a stock moe character gives while having the personality of other types.
Popular dojjiko characters
Mikuru Asahina from The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya is arguably the first popular dojjiko character. Her clumsy nature (both natural and with help from Haruhi) were many anime fans’ introduction to dojjiko characters.
Here are other popular modern examples:
- Kirin Toudou – The Asterisk War
- Miyuki Takara – Lucky Star
- Aqua – KonoSuba
- Sheele – Akame ga Kill!
- Ohana Matsuma – Hanasaku Iroha
- Ryou Fujibayashi – Clannad
- Yui Hirasawa – K-On!
The popularity of dojjiko characters within Japan have lead dojjiko characters to become “fan favorites.” This has lead to other series including their own types of dojjiko. They may not have the same appeal as yandere within some international communities, but dojjiko characters are starting to take over.
Who are your favorite dojjiko?