Urban Legend of Kuchisake-Onna

Our theme for the month of May is urban legends!


I’ve been watching the TV show, Constantine and have found many urban legends intertwined in the show. One of my favorites is the one involving Kuchisake-Onna…aka the slit-mouthed woman. The story has it that a beautiful Japanese woman cheated on her samurai husband. In a jealous rage, he cuts her mouth open with a pair of scissors. Giving her a permanently haneous smile, he asks her, “Who will think you’re beautiful now?”

The woman dies and then returns as a malevolent spirit known as Kuchisake-Onna, the woman who haunts the streets of Japan. Wearing a surgical mask, she is said to approach people asking whether or not they think she’s beautiful. If they say no, she cuts them in the very same way she was. If their answer is yes, she takes off her mask and asks, “How about now?”

In episode 5, “Danse Vaudou”, a single woman walks down an alley only to find a beautiful woman wearing a surgical mask. She is quickly killed by the scissor wielding woman, while an off-duty police officer watches. Chas is the only one who can keep the ghost off guard by asking her continuous questions until John Constantine can come to the rescue as always.

If you haven’t watched this show, it’s available to stream for FREE on the CW Seed.

Want to learn more about this legend? Here’s a short video from The History Channel:



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