J-Horror and Japanese Folklore: The Image of the Onryo [OWLS Blog Tour August 2020: Folklore]

This month’s OWLS topic was inspired by the name of Taylor Swift’s new album, Folklore. Yet rather than using her conceptual definition of what “folklore” means, we are going to use its original meaning: we are going to explore the traditions and cultures of a specific group and community within pop cultural texts.

Whether you’ve watched a Japanese horror movie (also known as J-Horror) or not, I’m pretty sure you know of or have heard of the characters of Sadako and Kayako from Ringu (The Ring) and Ju-On (The Grudge) respectively. In Japanese folklore, both Sadako and Kayako would be considered Onryo (think of the classic ghostly figure of a Japanese woman with long, black hair and a white dress, like the featured image of Sadako). In Japanese folklore, Onryo are vengeful spirits who were wronged in their lives (mostly by men) and come back to exact vengeance on those that wronged them or who unfortunately come into contact with them. As we’ll see later, both Sadako and Kayako were wronged in their respective lives and came back as Onryo and despite exacting revenge on the men that killed them, their curse lives on to haunt those that come into contact with them.

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My Experience With The Resident Evil 7 Demo

Suitably Bored

Resident Evil has often been credited as one of the original pioneers of the Survival Horror genre, apart from Silent Hill. Those familiar with earlier Resident Evil games remember the dog jumping through the window giving them one of many memorable jump scares. The series, however, has gone through some rough patches over the years, especially with how Resident Evil turned out. Resident Evil 7, releasing in 2017, seems to be taking the series back to its Survival Horror roots while also trying to bring a fresh, new experience to the series. Video game demos are quite a rarity in this day and age so it was quite refreshing to find that Capcom released a demo of the game before it released. To give you the short answer to this post: this game is SCARY AS HELL!

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Anime for the Non-Anime Watcher

I watch for the plot [Image via Funnyjunk]
I’m sure most people believe this [Image via Funnyjunk]
Let’s be honest, not everyone can appreciate anime the same way others do. Some people either find it hard to understand or just plain weird (cue “I’ve seen enough hentai to know where this is going” meme). For those who are interested in trying out anime but are unsure what to watch, here is a list of anime that I would recommend to you, just to help you get started. Take note, however, that this is a subjective list based on anime that I’ve watched before. It was very difficult to decide which anime should appear on this list.

Continue reading “Anime for the Non-Anime Watcher”

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