Zunbera (ずんべら Zunbera) is a yōkai. Zunbera appears as male in earlier series, but a female one appears in the 2018 anime.
In the 2018 anime, Zunbera appears as a tall, beautiful woman, with long black hair that has a long forelock that hangs by the right side of her face and a single strand separate from it. She has fair skin and the irises in her eyes are a mix of teal and hot pink. She wears a black kimono that is baggy around her shoulders and a red obi.
Zunbera is has a calm demeanor and is rather charitable having decided to "help" humans gain beauty through her Spiritplasty. She is not after the money for her services and just does so as she finds humans' bottomless avarice of it to be wonderfully precious. She is compliant to return the original faces but tries to make her customers doubt if they are really sure as they came to her for beauty. When requested by Kitarō to stop taking human's faces, she simply states that she will not do anything unless they come to her for aid, which Neko-Musume describes her as "foxy". According to rumors she was once a human obsessed with beauty, to the point that she drank mercury to attain.
According to rumors she was once a human obsessed with beauty, so much so, that she drank mercury and became a yōkai.
Zunbera appears before a running Kirara Fusano while resembling an old woman and realizing the girl is suffering as a result of the mistreatment she gets due to her ugly face, Zunbera offers to do Spiritplasty to help her overcome her problems. At her home, Kirara is not convinced that she can change her face to resemble one of her artworks until Zunbera removes her old woman appearance and adopts a younger and more beautiful one and claims she can help her. Kirara is disturbed by this and claims she does not have any money, but Zunbera claims she has no need for it. She prepares Kirara a "Soul Tempura" for her to consume, and as she is unconscious Zunbera performs the procedure and is successful. As she was doing this, Nezumi-Otoko was watching from out the window and forms a scheme from this.
She had formed a partnership with Nezumi-Otoko after this and does her Spiritplasty on another girl who was jealous of Kirara. After this, she is visited by Nezumi-Otoko, enjoying that he can get money from sending people to her. She is asked if she is really okay with having no share of the money, which she states to him that she has no need for money. However when Kirara is left faceless, Mana Inuyama requests Kitarō's help and they bring the jealous fan as well, requesting Zunbera to explain herself. She reveals how Spiritplasty works, where it has the patient wear the face of dead people, showing a box of faces. When asked if there is a way to return to normal, she simply states that all they have to do is wear their original faces again.
Kitarō finds her compliancy strange and asks what her end goal is, which she merely responds that she is not after anything, but that she finds human women's desperation for beauty to be precious. Medama-Oyaji tells them of a rumor he heard of her origins, in which she was a human who drank mercury to become a yōkai. The jealous girl takes her face back, but Zunbera asks if that is what she really wants, as she came to her for to be beautiful, stating that the procedure can be reapplied as many times as needed, but Neko-Musume warns that doing so could turn them into yōkai, questioning whether she would be happy smiling with her own face, which she wears her face again. She watches as Kirara is visibly conflicted as she believes her face has brought her nothing but trouble, dropping it and running away.
After Kirara decides to put her face back on, Kitarō requests she stops taking people's faces, but she claims she will not do anything, unless women come to her for help, leading Neko-Musume to claim she is a "foxy" one. Later it is seen that Kirara is with her beautiful face once more, though it is unknown if she underwent Zunbera's services again or normal plastic surgery.
Powers and Abilities
Spiritplasty (霊形手術 Reikei Shujutsu, lit. Spirit Surgery): Zunbera has the ability to remove people's faces and grant them the face of dead people, thus effectively performing her own kind of plastic surgery. The process does not look to be painful, as after Kirara consumed a "Soul Tempura", she was unconscious as Zunbera was performing the Spiritplasty. However, the effects are temporary and the procedure must be reapplied. Doing so consecutively, however, may turn the human into a Yōkai.
- Face Preservation: Through an unknown technique, Zunbera is capable of preserving the face of dead people, that doesn't appear to decay over time. Even faces removed from living people can be preserved and reapplied if needed.
Zunberabō (ずんべらぼう) is another name for the Nopperabō, Yōkai resembling humans but are actually faceless. However, a Zunberabō in Aomori Prefecture shocked a man to death while Nopperabō tends to scare humans.