Home Podcasts Ichimon Japan Why do hands come out of the toilet in Japan? (About Japanese toilet hands, ghosts, yokai and urban legends) | Ichimon Japan 51

Why do hands come out of the toilet in Japan? (About Japanese toilet hands, ghosts, yokai and urban legends) | Ichimon Japan 51

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On this episode of Ichimon Japan we ask: Why do hands come out of the toilet in Japan?

Topics Discussed

  • Japanese stories/legends/folklore/urban legends (toshi densetsu) involving hands, toilets and hands coming out of toilets
  • The hand in the bathroom/toilet from The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask
  • The story of Akai Kami Aoi Kami (Red Paper, Blue Paper) and its various versions
  • The hilarious butt licking red/white variant of the Red Paper, Blue Paper urban legend
  • The Akai Manto/Aka Manto story/urban legend/monster
  • The urban legend/story of Yoji Baba
  • The Sanji Baba
  • About the yōkai kainade nad its love of butt touching
  • The story of  Toire no Hanako-san (Hanako of the Toilet)
  • Hanako’s appearance
  • Different versions of the Hanako-san story
  • The three headed lizard version of the Hanako story
  • The supposed real story from Iwate Prefecture on which Hanako might have been based
  • How according to somewhat dubious sources Hanako’s real name might be Ikuko Hasegawa (emphasis on might)
  • Why Hanako might be named Hanako
  • Whether Hanako should be considered a yōkai or a yūrei
  • About the website toiletmagazine.jp and the Japan Toilet Research Center
  • Stories about kappa touching women’s butts
  • The yōkai known as Kanbari nyūdō and its habit of peeking on people in the bathroom
  • Variations of the kanbari nyūdoō story/yōkai
  • A theory for why there’s so many yōkai and monsters that do stuff to people’s butts while they are on the toilet
  • And much more!

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And it goes without saying that if you sign up, you’ll also get my undying gratitude. Thanks in advance!

Sources, Links, Videos, Etc.

Here are some of the Japanese language articles found when researching the topic of this episode.

Here’s some of the English language sources read for this episode.

You can watch the full 1995 live action movie Toire no Hanako-san here or via the video below.

Don’t forget to check out the latest episodes of the Japan Station podcast via the links below.

Support the show by picking up a t-shirt at KimitoDesigns.com.

Japanese Vocabulary List

Most episodes feature at least one or two interesting Japanese words or phrases. Here’s some of the ones that came up on this episode. All information is from Jim Breen’s WWWJDIC.

  • Kami
    • 紙 【かみ】 (n) paper; (P); 【し】 ; (suf,ctr) (abbr) (See 新聞紙・1) newspaper
  • Kawaya
    • 厠 【かわや】 (n) (dated) privy; toilet
  • Massao
    • 真っ青 : 真っ青(P); まっ青; 真青 【まっさお】 (adj-na,n) (1) deep blue; bright blue; (adj-na,n) (2) ghastly pale; pallid; white as a sheet
  • Washiki
    • 和式 【わしき】 (adj-no,n) Japanese-style (esp. in reference to squat toilets)
  • Yōshiki
    • 洋式 【ようしき】 (adj-no,n) (1) Western-style; foreign; (n) (2) (abbr) Western-style toilet
  • Naderu
    • 撫でる 【なでる】 (v1,vt) (1) to stroke; to caress; to brush gently; to pat; to rub; (v1,vt) (2) to comb (hair); to smooth down

We Want Your Questions

Is there something about Japan that confuses you? Is there something about Japanese culture that you would like to learn more about? Is there something in Japanese history that you would like us to explain? We’re always looking for new questions about Japan to answer, so if you have one, please send it to ichimon@japankyo.com.

Special Thanks

Opening/Closing Theme: Produced by Apol (YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Fiverr)

Ichimon Japan cover art: Produced by Erik R.

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Full Show Notes


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