Legends · October 31, 2023 0

The Slit-Mouthed Woman

The Slit-Mouthed Woman, often referred to as “Kuchisake-onna” in Japanese, is a well-known urban legend and myth in Japanese folklore.

This eerie and unsettling legend has captured the imaginations of people around the world. Here’s what you need to know about the Slit-Mouthed Woman myth:

The Tale of Kuchisake-onna:

The Slit-Mouthed Woman is said to be a malevolent spirit or ghost, typically depicted as a woman wearing a surgical mask to cover her face. She is described as wearing a long trench coat or kimono. What sets her apart and gives her the name “Slit-Mouthed Woman” is her terrifying appearance: her mouth is slit from ear to ear, creating a grotesque and unsettling visage.

Origins of the Legend:

The legend of Kuchisake-onna has several variations, but it is believed to have originated in Japan in the late 1970s or early 1980s. Some versions of the story describe her as a vengeful spirit seeking retribution for a disfiguring injury, while others portray her as a malevolent entity with no clear motive.

Encounters with Kuchisake-onna:

In the legend, a person may encounter Kuchisake-onna while walking alone at night. She may approach them and ask, “Am I pretty?” or “Do you think I’m beautiful?” If the person responds with a positive answer, she will reveal her face, showing her grotesque slit mouth, and ask, “How about now?” If the person responds negatively or screams, she may attack them with a sharp object.

Escaping the Encounter:

The legend also includes methods for escaping an encounter with Kuchisake-onna. Some versions suggest responding to her initial question by saying that she is “average” or “normal” rather than beautiful or ugly, which may confuse her and allow the person to escape. In other versions, offering her candy or coins can appease her.

Pop Culture Impact:

The Slit-Mouthed Woman myth has had a significant impact on Japanese popular culture. It has been the subject of books, movies, TV shows, and even video games. The character has become an iconic figure in the horror genre, both in Japan and internationally.

Urban Legend or Reality?

While the legend of Kuchisake-onna is undoubtedly a popular and chilling tale, there is no evidence to suggest that encounters with a real Slit-Mouthed Woman have occurred. It is widely considered an urban legend or myth, serving as a cautionary and spooky story told to thrill and scare people.

The Slit-Mouthed Woman myth is a prime example of how folklore and urban legends can capture the imagination and perpetuate cultural narratives of fear and caution. It continues to be a source of fascination and intrigue for those interested in the supernatural and the macabre.