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Vodyanoy (ヴォジャノイ Bojanoi) is a water spirit yōkai.

Appearance

Vodyanoy's initial look had them looking a bit like a demon with strange googly eyes. Their horns stuck out a bit far upwards, and they also had a long nose, with a spike sticking outwards, as he wears a black cloak, with a rather short mustache and beard. Soon after the World Obake Tour, Mizuki gave him a new design. He looked like part frog, part seal, with greenish spotted skin, looking more like the myth he was based on.

Personality

Vodyanoy a rather nice, offering to help unfreeze Kitaro and Nezumi-Otoko, before his true intentions are revealed, as he was working for Backbeard, melting Kitarō, and Nezumi-Otoko, and even eating Medama-Oyaji.

History

Kitarō's World Obake Tour

After Nezumi-Otoko and Kitarō get lost in a cave, slowly getting frozen, a ship appears, manned by a seemingly nice sea captain. The sea captain is revealed to be Vodyanoy and he melts Kitarō and Nezumi-Otoko. While Vodyanoy is scraping the ice off the ground, Medama-Oyaji tries to stop him but Vodyanoy cooks him in icy water and proceeds to eat him. Medama-Oyaji soon manages to go into his brain and messes around with it, making Vodyanoy do all sorts of weird things before his disguise is broken and he falls to the floor. Medama-Oyaji climbs out of his mouth and finds Kitarō and Nezumi-Otoko to be okay, and Nezumi-Otoko, as revenge cooked Vodyanoy instead and ate him. They then take Vodyanoy's boat onto the next part of their tour.

GeGeGe no Kitarō: Ibun Yōkai Kitan

Powers and Abilities

Shapeshifting: Vodyanoy is able to change his appearance, in which he disguises himself as an old man with a beard and mustache.

Culinary Skills: Vodyanoy is also able to cook pretty well, and is able to cook Medama with icy water and batter, before tossing him into his mouth.

Legend

Vodyanoy is said to usually ride along his river on a half-sunk log, making loud splashes. Consequently, he is often dubbed "grandfather" or "forefather" by the local people. Local drownings are said to be the work of the vodyanoy (or rusalkas). When angered, the vodyanoy breaks dams, washes down water mills, and drowns people and animals. (Consequently, fishermen, millers, and also bee-keepers make sacrifices to appease him.) He would drag down people to his underwater dwelling to serve him as slaves. In the Russian North, is believed that vodyanoys have a ruler. He is an old man, armed with a club. He can rise to the sky sitting on a black cloud and creating new rivers and lakes. His name is the Tsar Vodyanik, or the Vodyan Tsar.[1]

Trivia

  • Vodyanoy's head on the cover seems to be based on a mask from "Masks and demons" by Kenneth Macgowan and Herman Rosse.[2]
  • Due to a typographical error, his name is instead "Bojāi" (ボジャーイ Bojāi) in the bunkobon edition.

References

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