An urban legend is a fictional yet sometimes believed to be a true event. It is usually a story about something that happens to a person or a group of people. Urban legends are usually associated with bad, evil, or sometimes fatal things. These legends began from mild rumors which usually escalate provided they are linked with some actual events. Then again the majority if not all of these urban legends are just myths and none have yet to be proven. They have served their purpose as a means to spark intrigue, interest, and fear in people that hear them. Each area in the world has different urban legends from each other with some of them having some similarities. Bloody Mary is one popular urban legend all over the world. Japan is one of the few countries known for its interest in horror and fear. Japan also has its share of urban legends and they seem to be one of the most frightful ones out there.
Ungaikyo translates to the purple mirror in English. The Ungaikyo is a legend about a purple hand mirror that curses any child unfortunate enough to look at it. The legend dates back to the early days but the shape of this item is usually a purple covered hand mirror. There is a reason why the Ungaikyo only curses children below 13 and here’s why. The Ungaikyo is a yokai or Japanese entity that curses children at 13 years old because that is the adult age for yokais, making them right for the Ungaikyo’s ritual.
The real form of an Ungaikyo is that it has a large round glass for a head and is covered with purple flames. When his target reaches 13 years old, the Ungaikyo traps them in a mirror world where the person will never escape from again.
2. Fatal Fare
This urban legend basically targets Japanese taxi drivers. The legend goes that a passenger who is usually a female ride on a taxi in the middle of a foggy night. The passenger will direct the driver in a series of directions making him move around the city. The duration of the ride usually lasts for more than an hour. The passenger will then direct the driver outside the city going for longer miles.
After more time has passed by, the driver will then wonder if the passenger is making fun of him. When the driver will look behind them, they’ll realize that the passenger is no longer with them. Then they’ll also realize that they’re already at the edge of a cliff killing them as they fall to the ground.
3. Teke Teke
The legend states that there was once a beautiful high school girl in love with a boy. They had a good relationship until the boy decided to have a second relationship with another girl. The girl allegedly committed suicide by jumping in the railroad tracks and she was run over by a train but her lower half was destroyed leaving her upper half still alive but she eventually died later. The legend took place years later as there was another incident taking place in a nearby school. It was already late in the afternoon and a boy from the school was going home until he noticed a beautiful girl up on the window. He could only see her upper half and she was as beautiful as can be.
Then the girl jumped out of the window revealing only her upper half and the boy froze in his steps. The girl rushed towards the boy splitting him in half with a scythe. The boy ended up just like the girl and died. Several incidents happened similar to that and also along in the train tracks. She was named Teke Teke due to the sound she makes as she walked with her arms.
4. Aka Manto
Aka manto translates to the red cape in English. Aka Manto was once a handsome man and became a ghost. He wears a red cape and a mask to cover his handsome face. This legend has 2 accounts but both involved happening in the toilet. If a person should decide to use the last toilet stool in a public or private establishment in the middle of the night they will hear the voice of a man. The man will ask “Will you have a red or blue tissue?” If the person answers red then the skin on their back will be ripped giving them a red cape so to speak and this will then kill them. If the person answers blue, they will be choked to death turning their face blue. If the person answers yellow, then their face will be plunged in the toilet that they used until they drown to death. If the person should answer any color aside from red, blue, and yellow then they will be dragged to the underworld for an even worse fate. In order to avoid dying, you can answer simply by saying “No tissue, thank you very much” and Aka Manto will just leave you alone.
5. Kuchisake Onna
Kuchisake onna literally translates to mouth slit woman. Her tale states that she was once a beautiful woman. She was killed by her jealous husband by slitting her mouth with a pair of scissors. She eventually died after the ordeal and her husband committed suicide as well. She returns to strike vengeance against anyone unfortunate enough to see her. Kuchisake Onna appears in the middle of the night wearing a flu mask to hide her mouth. No one would suspect this because this is a sign of courtesy in Japan to wear a flu mask. The legend goes that she will ask anyone she meets “Am I beautiful?” If the person answers no then she will kill them on the spot with her scissors. If they answer yes then she will show her mouth and ask once again “What about now? Am I Still Beautiful?” If the person still answers yes then she will give them the same mouth as her using her scissors but the person may live through the ordeal or not. If they answer no then they will be split in half. Once you meet her, it will be impossible to avoid her. If you run from her, she’ll just appear in front of you again and again. There are several ways to avoid her and one of them is to simply answer her first question humbly by saying “You look average or I’m a bit busy” She’ll be confused giving you time to run and she won’t appear in front of you.
This legend is a bit disturbing because in the early 1980s a similar incident happened where a husband murdered his wife. Several murders occurred also in that area alarming the local police thus giving this urban legend a bit of notoriety.
Japan has other urban legends but some of them are just too farfetched to be considered real. Japan itself has a lot of memorable ghost stories and these legends are just a good addition to their fame.