Wednesday, February 02, 2011
Mizuki Shigeru's Yokai Hyaku Monogatari (Hundred Monsters) was, like much of his manga work, based on folk stories and traditions involving ghosts, spirits and monsters. Here is a sugoroku ---a paper board-game---depicting less than a hundred weird creatures from Japanese lore. This example may possibly be pre-War as the title across the top reads right to left "Hyaku Monogatari Bakemono." Along with the spider demon, rokuro-kubi and lantern ghost there is also a demon teakettle, a cracked pot and a walking phallus!
Hyakumonogatari Kaidankai (百物語怪談会 -- A Gathering of One Hundred Supernatural Tales) was a popular game during the Edo period. To play the game, one hundred candles were lit in a room at twilight. The players gathered around taking turns telling kaidan (weird tales). After each tale a single candle was extinguished and the room slowly grew darker and darker. The process was believed to summon a supernatural entity.