dr characters + autism !

okay so this is my preface to all of this. obviously i am not a professional and cannot diagnose these characters, so if it really bothers you, you can just regard this as me pointing out traits they have that overlap with autistic traits. also, i may add more characters to this in the future! i just think i have the most thoughts about miu and korekiyo. so without further ado, let's get into it. also, i think this goes without saying that there will be spoilers for danganronpa v3!

i'm gonna be talking about korekiyo and the autistic traits i see him exhibit first off! i feel like the most obvious thing i can talk about right off the bat is his infodumping about anthropology? in his first direct interaction with him you can have ingame, he immediately gives a hefty explanation of his talent.

Anthropology... studies customs legends, folk tales, songs, and much more. There may even be customs in your daily life, the origins of which you do not know. For example... certain aspects of birthday or new year celebrations. Anthropology sheds light on traditions and customs such as these through rigorous analysis. It is a study that examines the thought behind culture, faith, and customs. [...] Well of course it's fun... It is a study focused on humanity. I believe...that human beings are creatures who possess infinite beauty. I find all aspects of humanity — even the ugly parts — to be beautiful. [...] Our present situation is rather...intriguing. What beauty will I be able to witness here?

then, in his first free time event, with kaede, he immediately tries to relate her talent to his.

So Kaede, you are the Ultimate Pianist, correct? [...] Well, music is an important aspect of anthropology. [...] The kind of folk music you are likely imagining is different from my field of study, though. Correct...in that those are examples of traditional cultural music of Japan. However, what I research is music created through people's daily lives. [...] Hmm...how to put it... It's a complicated distinction, I admit. It's...music that was not crafted by the hands of specialists, such as musicians. Nursery rhymes, lullabies, songs passed down through generations of mothers... Traditions and events expressed in song. Such as a song to remember a disaster... Yes, things like that... [...] There are many nursery rhymes and children's games whose meanings have been forgotten. That meaning is what anthropologists chase. I can tell you about one, if you'd like.

i can definitely keep going about his infodumping, but granted that those are the first two direct interactions you can have with him ingame, i feel as though it speaks for itself. even in the second free time event with shuichi, he states the following.

Since you're here, you wish to learn more about anthropology, yes?

while the free time events are used to get closer with and learn more about the characters ingame, and discussions about their talents do take place, said discussions are usually more in conjunction with how their talents affect them as people. korekiyo, conversely, merely peppers in discussions of his characterization alongside his lengthy explanations about various facets of anthropology. the education he gives is at the forefront. at the conclusion of all free time events, wherein most students are showcased to have developed strong platonic or romantic feelings for shuichi, korekiyo says:

Perhaps I might consider you my first disciple, then? Kehehe...I never imagined having a disciple so soon.

rather than regard him as a friend or romantic prospect (though the latter is out of the question as per chapter 3's disconcerting reveal), korekiyo seems eager to have shuichi as his first disciple. the entirety of his bond with shuichi is built with the knowledge he can give him and show him pertaining to anthropology.

now, i'm going to talk about his general sensory issues displayed throughout the game's course. evidently, there's the screenshot shown above, which is from "i want to scream really loud!" in his love across the universe. this, coupled with his general dislike of miu and kokichi (two notably loud and vulgar people), definitely exhibits a noise sensitivity to me. additionally, in "Watch an action movie" in his love across the universe, he says the following:

so not only does he describe the happenings in action movies as sensory overload, he also does not want to engage with them because he cannot relate them back to his talent. this is also exhibited in another interaction in love across the universe, with "let's play basketball".

he literally won't do things if he cannot relate them back to his talent — and always tries to relate the things his peers do speak about to it.

now, i wanna talk about the body language displayed in some of his sprites! i want to preface this by saying there is no objective list of every way in which people stim, but i want to explain what sprites i view as him stimming in.

in these ones he's fidgeting with his hat.

in these ones he's cradling himself, also a self - soothing tactic (especially granted his more negative countenance in the latter two sprites).

the first thing i want to point out with this sprite is that he is fidgeting with his necklace. however, i'd like to also point out how the positioning of his hands and arms looks similar to that of the butterfly hug, which he also does in the sprite below.

it's not exactly the same, but i found it interesting enough to point out nevertheless. also with his outward appearance, two things i wish to comment upon are his mask and his bandaged hands. having a mask on literally eliminates a lot of the need to outwardly emote, and some people view his mask as a pressure stim. there isn't much in terms of canonical explanation for the bandages on his hands, but in tandem with all his other sensory issues, i think it could very well be to not have to touch things directly with his hands. he also has a lot of layers to his clothing, both in his uniform and his pregame appearance. his uniform has two visible top layers whilst his pregame outfit has three visible top layers, which again serve as a pressure stim. notably, he is still masked in his pregame appearance.

finally, i just wanna touch upon his general disposition. he is very aloof and observant, and has a propensity to say rather unsettling things openly. he also comes across as disinterested in the safety and wellbeing of his peers during the killing game, despite declaring the other students to be his friends during chapter 3's trial. he has a routine of waking up two hours before the morning announcement. as discussed in his infodumping about anthropology, he tends to talk at people rather than engage in a two - way conversation.

honestly, i feel as though there is more i can get into with him, but i'm going to pause it here for now. an analysis like this but for miu is also incoming, eventually. and you certainly don't have to agree with any of this! that's the beauty of speculating about media. but please remember to be kind and respectful in discussions.