Uncanny Japan - Myths, Folktales, Superstitions, History and Language

Speculative fiction writer, long-term resident of Japan and Bram Stoker Award finalist Thersa Matsuura explores all that is weird from old Japan—strange superstitions, folktales, cultural oddities, and interesting language quirks. These are little treasures she digs up while doing research for her writing.


Eine durchschnittliche Folge dieses Podcasts dauert 13m. Bisher sind 55 Folge(n) erschienen.

episode 25: Okiku and the Nine Plates (Bancho no Sarayashiki)

One, two, three... Okiku kneeling, counts the priceless plates that have been entrusted to her. Four, five, six... her samurai master, Tessan, stands, hands on hips, he watches her trembling hands. Seven, eight, nine... Okiku gasps. She checks the...


 2018-10-30  9m

episode 24: A Bedtime Story - Kachi-Kachi Mountain (PG Version)

Episode 24 of Uncanny Japan is a story, a Bedtime Story. Here I read to you my retelling and reimagining of a classic Japanese folktale Kachi Kachi Yama (Kachi Kachi Mountain). There are quite a few versions of the story out there. This one is very PG...


 2018-10-12  26m

episode 23: The Slit-Mouthed Woman (Kuchisake Onna)

Japanese Urban Legends


 2018-09-20  13m

episode 22: Great Screaming and Uninterrupted Pain More Buddhist Hells

Here are the last four Buddhist Hot Hells for your enjoyment. There is extreme heat, much screaming, and a flaming rooster. Also, I was able to catch a local summer festival on the binaural mics. That is very cool.


 2018-09-03  9m

episode 21: Screaming and Crushing in Four Buddhist Hells

The first of two podcasts this month, Episode 21: Screaming and Crushing in Four Buddhist Hells, is just about that, four of the eight Buddhist Hot Hells. Come listen to what happens when you kill a mosquito, commit mutiny, or convince your drunken...


 2018-08-14  11m

episode 20: Ship Goddesses, Boat Ghosts, and Sea Monks (Funadama, Funa Yurei, Umi Bozu)

The third Monday of July is Umi no Hi (海の日), Marine Day, so this month on Uncanny Japan I decided to talk about three otherworldly ocean creatures: Ship Goddesses, Boat Ghosts, and Sea Monks. Funa dama (船霊), funa yurei (船幽霊), and umi...


 2018-07-19  9m

episode 19: The Heavenly Demon (Amanojaku) + Bedtime Story!

This month's podcast is a special one. Not only did I do a podcast about a strange little creature called the amanojaku (天邪鬼), but at the end I attached one of my Bedtime Stories that I record monthly for my Patrons. So if you stay tuned...


 2018-06-26  29m

episode 18: The God of Smallpox (Housougami)

Welcome to May's Uncanny Japan. In this episode I talk about the God of Smallpox (housougami/疱瘡神). Come listen to the beliefs in this fearsome god and how dogs and the color red kept him at bay. Notes: The intro/outro music of Uncanny Japan...


 2018-05-19  10m

episode 17: Granny Dumping Mountain (Ubasute Yama)

This month on Uncanny Japan I talk about Ubasuta Yama (姥捨山) or Granny Dumping Mountain. Back in old Japan when times were tough and there were too many mouths for one family to feed, they might do something called kuchi herashi...


 2018-04-21  8m

episode 16: Playing Hide and Seek by Yourself (Hitori Kakurenbo)

(Transcript available) Hitori kakurenbo (一人隠れん坊 ) means playing hide and seek by yourself. It sounds silly, but it's actually a super creepy, Japanese urban myth that involves you all alone at night with nothing but a stuffed animal, some...


 2018-03-18  10m