5 Popular Yokai in Manga and Anime



5. Kappa
Most of you who frequent twitch would think of a different Kappa when you hear that name. But for those who are familiar with manga and anime, you would know that a Kappa are aquatic creatures that inhabit lakes or rivers, have a bald spot on their head, crazy about cucumbers and are usually green.

They are usually portrayed as funny yokai but they are much more creepier than what we are accustomed to.

Lets start of with their appearance. They are usually the size of human children. Has scaly skin that could range from green to red to yellow to even blue. They have webbed hands and feet, has a beak and a turtle-like shell.

They possess 3 anuses and are known to fart 3 times more than humans and the dish-like bald spot on their head, are the source of their powers. The bald spot needs to be kept wet at all times or the Kappa will dry up and may eventually die.

Another weird body feature they have is that their arms are said to be connected to each other through the torso and can slide from one side to the other. Meaning if one arm was pulled, the other arm would retract into the shell.

Like humans, some are good and some are bad. The good Kappas would live solitary lives, may befriend humans or other yokai and likes to play tricks and games like sumo wrestling or shogi and some are known to help people with irrigation.

Now, the bad ones are known to be violent and crass. They would attack, bite and drag anything under water until they drown. They are also known to kidnap or rape swimming women and would also devour humans alive.

4. Rokurokubi
Like the Nukekubi that has their head detach itself when sleeping at night, the Rokurokubi appears like an ordinary woman in the morning but would have her neck stretched and elongated at night.

The neck would stretch so much that it would enable the head to roam freely. It would attack small animals and may just scare people nearby while some story says they would lick up lamp oil with their tongue.

Usually the Rokurokubi doesn’t know that they transform into a yokai at night as it is a curse given to them by some cruel fate. It may or may not be a curse by their own sins and mostly its not their own, rather its either their husbands or fathers’s sins that caused them to be cursed.

The men would commit a grave sin like robbing and killing someone and escaping without punishment thus this sin manifested into a curse as it only effects the female member of the family.

The sad thing about the Rokurokubi is that, they themselves does not know that they become a yokai. Bringing a lot of confusion for the girls on why people are scared of her.

3. KaraKasa Kozo/Kasa Obake
This is one of those tsukumogami where an object turns into a yokai after it reached its 100th birthday. The Kasa-Obake are Chinese-style oiled-paper umbrellas that came to life.

They usually have one eye, jump around with one leg and has a long tongue like most animated objects that became yokai has. Sometimes, but very rarely, they would have two feet instead.

The Kasa-Obake are pretty harmless because all it likes to do is get people to run and be scared. It would sneak upon humans and with a sudden cold oily swipe, it would lick the human with its long and enormous tongue to get a reaction out of them. Seriously, all it does is lick and jump scare and chase.

Pretty scary if you’re the one being chased but definitely funny seeing someone else being chased by a hopping umbrella.

2. Tanuki
If you’ve watched ranma 1/2, the Tanuki always comes in the form of a statue that Ryoga has whenever he gets lost. The Tanuki are East Asian canine that resembles a badger or a raccoon.

The Tanuki statues are usually found in Japanese homes and shops because of not just its cuteness but also because of their powerful magical abilities and the fun loving nature that is associated with them.

Their magic powers enables them to shapeshift into many things not specifically pretty women like other yokai likes to do but also things like household items or even random stuff like stones and trees. Their most famous attribute is their large and magical testicles.

They may use them as weapons, drums, fans to keep cool or even umbrellas. When they shape-shift, the balls would almost always transform into a prop for their disguise. For example their testicles may turn into a shop while they themselves turn into the shopkeeper.

There’s a famous nursery rhyme about the Tanuki which goes like this:
Tan tan Tanuki no kintama wa/Kaze mo nai no ni/Bura bura

Which means Tan-tan-Tanuki’s balls/Even when there is no wind/They would swing and swing.

1. Zashiki Warashi
The Zashiki-Warashi is a ghost child. They like to dwell in large, well maintained, fancy houses. They enjoy playing pranks on their fleshy housemates and would run around laughing without being seen. However, seeing a Zashiki-Warashi or having one in your home is considered good luck and could even bring you great riches.

They usually look like five or six year old children with bobbed hair and red faces. They can be a boy or a girl wearing traditional Japanese clothes with old fashioned hairstyles. But it is very difficult to say specifically because it is very difficult to see them as only home owners or children are able to see them.

Zashiki-Warashi aren’t the normal ghosts because they do not haunt for revenge. Instead, they act just like trouble-making kids. Moving things around, leaving children footprints in the house, talk out loud without being there and play what musical instruments you have any time of day. The scary thing is, sometimes you might not get only one Zashiki Warashi but multiple of them in one go.

The Zashiki Warashi are considered gods of luck. You might get annoyed of their presence but having them around your house would give your household property and riches. But if you for whatever reason treat it wrongly and drive them out of the house, bad luck befall upon the household which in the worse case possible could kill the whole household due to some misfortune.



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