Yokai is very popular motif for TV shows in Japan. And I’m watching one, too. Do you know “Natsume Yujin-cho (夏目友人帳)”? Its very calm, lay back and a little bit creepy atmosphere is nicely unique. You can see the today’s Japanese country side life and scenery.

And of course, highlight of this show is Nyanko-sensei’s UGLY cuteness…. His design is based on real Japanese traditional cat figurehead “maneki-neko”.

招き猫 (manekineko): Lucky Figurehead for Prosperous Business

Well, then let’s talk about kanji that I noticed in this show.

Yokai Trick and Japanese Kanji

In “Natsume Yujin-cho”, so many human-shape yokais are covering up their eyes like this. She used to be a bird and now she can shift into human-shape. The symbol on the cover is not kanji but it looks like “鳥(tori: Bird)”.

Japanese Kanji

In that episode, to go into the group of yokais without getting noticed, a yokai did similar trick to Natsume. The yokai mixed his blood into the ink and wrote a kanji, then covered Natsume’s eyes. The letter “目” means “Eye(s)”.

Now, yokais never notice that Natsume is human. ( ゚Д゚)

Japanese Kanji

Natsume’s friend got the same trick to hide his identity too.

By the way, the kanji on the bottle “酒” means “Sake (rice wine)”.

Japanese Kanji T-Shirt Yokai

If you want to know the meanings of any Japanese kanji that you don’t see English subs for in a particular animation or live action movie, tell me “Name of the Show”, “Season and Episode #” and “the Exact Moment (Minute: Second)”! I can’t promise to reply to everyone but I’ll try my best!

Email to: info@kansaichick.com