Ghost Stories "Am I Beautiful? Kuchisake-onna" (partially found unaired episode of anime series; 2000)
Ghost Stories is an anime series that ran for 20 episodes between 2000 and 2001. It centers around Satsuki Miyanoshita moving to a new town. After making new friends at school, they visit an abandoned building in the nearby area and discover that it's haunted. The haunting was a result of Satsuki's mother capturing ghosts who haunted the school and surrounding area. Due to the urbanization of the town, the ghosts are now roaming freely, and Satsuki must use a book from her mother to exorcise the ghosts for good.
One episode, "Am I Beautiful? Kuchisake-onna" ("あたしきれい? 口裂け女"), attempted to depict the Kuchisake-onna urban legend. Kuchisake-onna (which translates to "the slit-mouthed woman"), according to folklore, would stalk an area in a large overcoat and a surgical mask. She would ask children if she was beautiful or not and, regardless of their reply, would normally kill them after revealing her disfigured ear-to-ear slit of a mouth.
The episode was intended to air in Japan on November 5, 2000, as the third episode, and was even previewed as an upcoming episode, but it was ultimately pulled from airing due to complaints from parents who were worried that her disfigurement would look too much like a cleft palate. Fuji TV obliged and pulled the episode due to fears of offending viewers. The episode was also never released on DVD and was not present in the English dub.
It is unlikely that Fuji TV will release the episode due to the controversy, and it's unknown if they even still have a copy of it. As of now, the only footage from the episode that has been seen by the public is the 15-second preview.
- A Wikipedia page with a list of episodes of Ghost Stories Retrieved 28 Jun '17.
- A page from TV Drama Database detailing Am I Beautiful? Kuchisake-onna (in Japanese) . Retrieved 28 Jun '17.