The following article contains many spoilers. Do not read if you plan to watch the show.
A series of short animations with a duration of 4 minutes and a half can really spook you out?
That depends on what they are showing to you, and what atmosphere each episode can create. And definitely this anime can leave you without words. A collection of short japanese tales, each one more weird and upsetting than the previous one. I was just browsing my completed anime list on My Anime List and I searched for some horror shows and this one caught my eyes.
First of all, because of the strange anime effects and artwork and secondly because of the stories told.
Episode 1 – If you move into a new house and right across the street, a strange woman stares at you, day and night, you have to quickly realize something is very wrong. But what if she comes into your house and that is the start of an undefiled end for you?
Episode 2 – Zanbai can be translated as offering disaster to a certain person. It is a curse, it is a ritual of death, and the hero in this episode cannot escape his fate.
Episode 3 – We all love the fresh air of countryside in the morning. But what if, in this wonderland there is a demon that must be kept out through a strange ritual of laughing…? A happy face always hides a deeper truth of darkness.
Episode 4 – I work at a print shop, and once I saw an old person climbing down the stairs towards me – and then – it just vanished. I do not know what it was. I am sure I saw someone coming down and yet there was nobody there afterwards. Episode 4 tells the story of an entity similar to Yurei that lives inside a copy machine. So strange, so beautiful.
Episode 5 – A family man decides that buying a present for his son along with his wife is not what he planned for the day. So he decides to skip this part only to find himself in a realm of nightmare. He wanted to be alone.. now he finds himself in a strange place.. as he desired..alone…
Episode 6 – Only work and no play, makes Jack a dull boy. Japanese people are known to be hard-working. But when you only work and work and work – fatigue comes along. And hallucinations happen. Is that pounding meat creature real???
Episode 7 – Visiting deserted places at night might be a very dumb idea. Especially when you enter a locked door and you find yourself looking like a smiling corpse.
Episode 8 – Do not look into the eyes of the Umbrella Goddess.. stay out of sight.. keep the door closed…
Episode 9 – A young girl is affected by a grudge held against her ancestors. And when this becomes visual on her skin, only inside a holy temple a cure can be found. Or at least purification can be tried.
Episode 10 – As a child I heard stories about ghosts and demons hiding into toilets and grabbing you and eating you.. but this episode makes all this concept incredibly weird.
Episode 11 – Cursed videotape. A cliche into the Japanese horror productions. A videotape of a ghost who moves and if you rewind the tape isn’t there anymore. Don’t look back…
Episode 12 – A shadow in the pavement wants to play with you. If you promise to play with it.. for the sake of your good health.. keep that promise.
Episode 13 – All tales of madness must present the cries of cicadas in the evening. This last episode had something of a Higurashi no naku koro ni ambience included.
I really enjoyed this show because of the painted-style of the animation. Dark tones, disturbing voice effects and a creepy soundtrack helped grow the stories. I am looking forward to the second and the third season of the anime.
And remember… when the door opens up by itself… run!