What does Dandere mean? Meaning, definition, explanation

Dandere is a specific character from the Japanese anime or manga world, of which there are countless. The word is used only in a specific community and is not a stock of everyday language. The individual archetypes in the manga universe are classified according to their shown or unexpressed emotions with the suffix „dere“. The derives from the Japanese word deredere, which means nice, dear, or in love.

The term dandere combines the words danmari (=silence) and deredere. Dandere archetypes are not limited to Japan alone; they also appear in Western comics, books, and film productions. A striking example is the character Brenda Quagmire from the US animated series Family Guy. A striking Dandere type also appears in Harry Potter: Harry’s extremely shy classmate Neville Longbottom.

Description of the Dandere Character

Dandere personalities are quiet and not very socially involved. They are predominantly girls. They are considered outsiders and only show their true character when they are alone with someone. Dandere characters appear emotionally cold at first glance. However, this is not the case. Even though they hardly interact with their environment, they are still sweet, cute and behave lovingly.

Since Dandere personalities generally want to avoid unpleasant situations, they have a lot of trouble speaking up. The characterization shy best captures the essence of their nature. Once they are with people they like, they show another facet of themselves, becoming talkative and warm.

Dandere compared to Kuudere

While Kuudere are naturally reserved, Dandere remain shy out of shyness. Kuudere archetypes are easier to relate to as readers or listeners because they are more talkative than Dandere. They are a little more outspoken, but have the same monotone as Dandere. Initially, Kuudere are aloof and come across as emotionally cold, but as the plot progresses they reveal their vulnerability and show themselves to be quite caring. They are rather level-headed, but certainly not callous.

The most famous Danderes in the anime universe

Probably the most famous Dandere character is Hinata Hyuga, a main character of Masashi Kishimoto’s Naruto series. Hinata already appears in the first anime episode (in the manga not until episode 34). She graduated from the ninja academy at the age of 12 and is one of the most powerful ninjas in Konoha village. Although she is supposed to become the next leader of the Hyuga clan after her father, her shy character does not suit this great task. Also typical of her Dandere characteristics is the fact that she has feelings for Naruto during the course of the plot, but does not or cannot show them. Naruto is too naive and inexperienced to realize that there are deeper feelings behind Hinata’s behavior.

Sailor Mercury (alias Ami Mizuno) from Sailor Moon is also one of the oldest and most famous Dandere archetypes. Sailor Moon has been part of pop culture since the 1990s, so several generations have already grown up with this character. Sailor Mercury is the second warrior in the Sailor universe and joins Sailor Moon to fight against evil. She is very smart, but also extremely shy. She has a hard time socializing (at least at the beginning of the series). Since Ami Mizuno studies a lot, she has few friends. In school exams she always scores top marks. Since she prefers to spend her free time reading, she is considered arrogant by those around her, which turns out to be false when she gets to know her better.

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