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:: O-bon ::
2009/8/25

About a week and some change ago, in most parts of Japan, the country celebrated the season of O-bon, a Buddhist observance that honors departed ancestors. Even though Halloween has started to pick up a little bit in popularity around Japan, O-bon is the traditional scary time of the year, probably because all those dead souls are believed to come back for a visit during the holiday period.

I have plans for a fun and scary storyline that I’m holding in store for the Halloween season, but I didn’t want to let O-bon pass without so much as a nod. So, in fact, I’ll give two:

  • The Obakemono Project is one of my favorite creepy sites. It’s a beautifully illustrated encyclopedia of all kinds of Japanese ghoulies. I really dig it.
  • A blast from my own past: Zombies Around the World, a Halloween strip I did as part of Peter Delgado Jr.’s annual Zombie-a-Go-Go event, back in 2004. Points to folks who recognize the obscure pop culture references in the Japan panel.

Boo!
Zombies Around the World

:: 7 Comments... ::

  1. speearr

    Obscure? The Ring is hardly obscure! It’s fantastic work, by the way…

  2. Chris

    Thanks :)
    You’re right about the obscurity, speearr. I guess the Ring always felt a little obscure to me, because I became a die hard fan while I was in Japan, a few years before the American version came out. I wonder how many people in the States still remember the Ring, now that the remake is seven years old.

  3. RPGBluesguy

    woot! a shout-out to me! :D
    btw: i want more strips done by monday. 50 more would do (muhahahahahahaha!!!)

  4. Chris

    Waaaah!

  5. Bearman

    So what does one do during o-ban?

  6. Chris

    Usually folks travel to their hometowns, Bearman, and pay respects at the grave sites of their ancestors. Different regions may have other different local customs. The boat-floating scene in Karate Kid 2 was an O-bon observance, as I recall. :) The candles in the tiny paper boats were supposed to lead souls back to the other side at the close of O-bon, or something like that. I believe it’s an Okinawan custom.

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