Sick and helpless, would you feel like you’re in good hands with a man who calls himself Dr. Ramune? Unfortunately, those afflicted by mysterious diseases don’t have a choice. Thankfully, his assistant, Kuro, readily provides the punches necessary to keep Ramune on task no matter how creepy or unfocused he’s being.
Cursed objects, the suffering caused by a weakened heart, and spirits are pretty common in anime and even the serious vs. goof detective/doctor dynamic between Kuro and Ramune, can be seen elsewhere. Nevertheless, it’s very entertaining from the various manifestations of people’s pain to Ramune’s oh-so-creative ‘cures’ for curses.
So Touching You’ll Cry… Mayonnaise??
While episode 1 starts ominously with a little girl crying, it’s not long before her ridiculous malady is made clear… By stifling her own emotions and only pretend to cry in her dramas, condiments come out instead of tears. Unlike many other anime where fragile human hearts are invaded by malevolent forces, the ‘mysterious diseases’ in Dr. Ramune seem to be dire, yet, creatively funny comments on one’s behavior. Emotions behave like a ‘condiment’ that enhances human interaction, thus, insincere emotions produce the wrong condiment, such as mayo or soy sauce tears. It’s stupid and funny but seeing the resulting anger from the mother and the mounting pain it causes the afflicted daughter does make you feel more than you would have first thought possible.
Genius or Lunacy?
Dr. Ramune seems very flippant and jokey even as he deals with suffering customers. His extreme reactions and tendency to laugh at other’s suffering makes him seem unreliable and incompetent. Yet, his cures go beyond just alleviating an unwanted symptom. They force the afflicted to come to terms with their own shortcomings, forcing them to grow stronger and be less likely to suffer mysterious illnesses in the future. For instance, to remove the chikuwa surrounding a man’s body part, he must remove the lies that obscure his true self. From analogies to fully thought-out plans to force an issue to come to light, Dr. Ramune is much more capable than he appears at first.
With slightly more revealed about the young doctor and his assistant each episode, it seems it will be a while before we get to see how Kuro and Dr. Ramune met or the backstory on how Ramune started studying mysterious diseases. So far, they’re keeping mysterious diseases pretty vague themselves and it’s unclear if they’ll be more understood later or if the vagueness will lend itself to many different manifestations. It’s at least pretty likely we’ll see some old faces pop up in later episodes if the opening credits are anything to go by.
The chikuwa episode is an amazing combination of discomfort and hilarity especially for those who stand up to pee. While probably not an anime we’d want to watch with young members of our family, it’s a pretty funny show that doesn’t take itself too seriously but offers some good advice about how to live an honest life. Maybe you won’t have to worry about your tears turning to ketchup, but it’s an image that will stick with you the next time you try to hold your tears back!
Let us know in the comments if you’re intrigued enough to give Dr. Ramune -Mysterious Disease Specialist- a shot!