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Quotation HeartsI just know that I won't be able to talk to anyone or make any friends, as time passes me by... After all... What I say won't reach anyone. Not a single person on Earth. But out there somewhere... Surely there must be someone it can reach... (...) I know that I could find someone...Quotation Hearts R
Umika Konohoshi, from Hoshikuzu Telepath

"Dandere" (JP) is a term for a character who is silent almost to the point of coming across as emotionless most of the time, but will suddenly become cute, talkative, and affectionate when they are alone with their love interest. They will often keep to themselves and not go out of their way to try to talk to anyone other than their love interest revealing that they're actually just shy. They often struggle with severe social anxiety and will depend on their love interest to help them overcome it.

Meaning of the Name

Dandere (ダンデレ) is a combination of "danmari" (ダンマリ), meaning "silence, keeping silent, or uncommunicative", and "deredere" (デレデレ), meaning "to be lovestruck".[1]

Origin

The exact origin of the term "dandere" is unclear, but it appears to have originated in the Western anime community in early 2008, with the earliest known usage being from April of that year. Originally, it was used to refer to all characters who were "silent" and became "dere" around their love interest, but after being heavily confused with kuudere it started to shift towards characters who were silent because of reasons of social anxiety and shyness, as opposed to a willing choice like kuudere. It's possible the term was created by someone unaware of kuudere and then later had to be altered to have a different meaning.[2]

History

Japanese Usage

Usage of dandere later spread to the Japanese side of the internet with the earliest known usage being found on NicoNico in October 2008. When the entry for dandere was first posted it was mistakenly added as the combination "dandii" (だんでぃ), meaning "dandy" or "a man unduly devoted to style, neatness, and fashion in dress and appearance", and "deredere" (デレデレ).[3] However, there doesn't seem to be any evidence of this definition actually being used and the correct definition was also added later that same day. However, that hasn't stopped it from showing up in Western articles as an alternate meaning, referring to a man who is normally cool but does something unexpectedly cute.[4]

Although the term "dandere" is extremely popular in the West, it is relatively uncommon in Japanese. It can occasionally be seen on Japanese social media, but the term has never been used in any official Japanese media. The term "ダンデレ" only has ~200 search results from Japanese websites on Google (with many of them being about "dandere" homonyms and not this dere type) while the English term "dandere" has over 2,500,000 search results.

This can be further seen with Japanese websites citing English sources when researching what "ダンデレ" means.[5]

Personality

A dandere will more or less act like a normal person, but will not talk unless spoken to or required to. They will avoid talking because of their shyness but if they need to they will speak, sometimes with some difficulty or embarrassment. Most often the only person they feel truly comfortable talking with is their love interest, even if they are still too shy to reveal their intimate feelings to them.[6]

A dandere tends to feel more comfortable when surrounded by familiar people. If an unfamiliar person is introduced when the dandere is with a group that they're comfortable with, then the shyness of the dandere will increase. They may even look to their love interest for comfort or encouragement. Their love interest will be the pillar that gives them strength to overcome their shyness and slowly make new friends. With enough time of being around their love interest, they may even completely overcome their shyness. Even if some shyness still remains, the difference between the dandere at the start and the dandere after spending a lot of time with their love interest is generally quite noticeable.

Differences From Other Archetypes

The difference between a dandere and a kuudere is that a dandere character may be nervous or shy inside (not calm), which causes them to not want to talk too much with people because of their insecurity, while a kuudere character can speak while retaining their serenity (are calm) but will prefer to stay silent or will think that speaking is unnecessary. In other words, any dandere character will be flustered if prompted to speak, unlike kuudere characters who have no problem responding if necessary. Furthermore, both of these dere types distance themselves from others for different reasons, making them mostly lack true friendships with others as a hermit or a hikikomori (someone with acute social withdrawal) in society. A dandere character will feel very sensitive to criticism from others and they feel inferior, even if they desire true friendships or romance with others. On the contrary, a kuudere character thinks that there is nothing wrong with not having any relationships with others and that they'd rather be completely alone, due to being completely shunned by society.[7]

The difference between a dandere and a teredere is that dandere characters are shy and quiet in front of people they don't know but will become talkable around their love interest, whereas teredere are fine in front of people they don't know but will become bashful around their love interest because they get embarrassed from how much they love them.

Alternate Meanings

Since the term "dandere" (ダンデレ) is not widely used in Japanese, many alternate meanings have also came into existence that have the same spelling.

Dungeon Yandere

The 2021 manga series Danjon ni Hisomu Yandere na Kanojo ni Ore wa Nando mo Korosareru (JP) is officially abbreviated as "Dandere" (JP) which is currently the only known use of "dandere" in an official media. This "dandere" is a combination of the word "danjon" (ダンジョン), meaning "dungeon", and "yandere" (ヤンデレ), meaning "a character whose love, admiration, and devotion is so strong that it is expressed as an excessive obsession". In this series, the main protagonist is stuck in a dungeon with a yandere character.[8]

Dancing Cinderella

There is also an all-female J-pop band in Japan founded in 2022 that is known as "Dandere" (JP). This is an abbreviated version of their full name Dancing Cinderella (JP).

Similar Japanese Archetypes

  • Hikikomori: A term for characters who shut themselves away from the outside world by staying at home.
  • Meganekko: A term for a cute and sweet female character who wears glasses.
  • Moe: A term for characters that are the embodiment of being "cute" and innocent.

Characters with this Personality

See Dandere/Japanese Characters to see characters from Japanese media.
See Dandere/Non-Japanese Characters to see characters from non-Japanese media.

Gallery

References

veDere Types
Japanese Standard

Bakadere Biridere Bokodere Butsudere Darudere Deredere Dorodere Erodere Gandere Goudere Gundere Himedere Hinedere Kamidere Kichidere Kiridere Kuudere M Dere Nyandere Onidere Rindere Roshidere S Dere Shindere Teredere Tsundere Undere Usodere Utsudere Uzadere Wandere Yandere Yoidere Zondere

Variations

Deretsun Tsun-Aho Tsundora Tsun-Pure Tsunshun Tsuntere

Western Standard

Bocchandere Byoukidere Dandere Kanedere Kekkondere Nemuidere Oujidere Smugdere Teasedere Thugdere

Variations

Kamidere (Western) Kidere Mayadere (Western) Megadere (Western) Oujodere (Western)

Other

Dere Types Unofficial Dere Types

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