Japanese folklore is filled with all types of creatures, with one of the most enduring being the oni. Considered to be a type of yokai, oni took the form of giant, supernatural trolls. Their demonic appearance gave them an evil reputation. Oni have been identified as bringers of chaos, delighting in the punishment of mortals. The connection to the darkness has translated into pop culture, as oni have appeared in art and literature. However, their role has changed over time to reflect modern interpretations. Continue reading “How The Oni Transformed From A Japanese Demon Into A Pop Culture Icon”
In terms of mythology, Japanese folklore makes up some of the most intriguing stories. Japanese religion is based around the kami, spirits that are linked to nature and embody different virtues. Kami are known to exhibit good and evil characteristics, with their nature being ambiguous. Marvel has always represented Japanese culture in a faithful way, which extends to the mythology. A character that represents the power of kami is Amatsu-Mikaboshi, the Japanese god of darkness and one of the greatest threats to the Marvel Universe. Mikaboshi’s existence offers a window into the idea of chaos. Continue reading “The Chaotic Nature Of Kami: Amatsu-Mikaboshi And Japanese Mythology”
Symbols are an important part of any culture and there are many significant images in Japanese folklore. Spirits play a vital role and one of the most important is the kitsune, or fox spirit. Kitsunes are depicted as intelligent shapeshifters whose magical ability increases with age. They have the ability to be benevolent or malicious depending on the situation. Some stories portray them as guardians, while others depict them as tricksters. The ambiguity of the fox makes it an interesting symbol in Japanese folklore, one that’s transitioned into modern pop culture.