Voices
in
Japan

have your say

What do you think about the way Halloween is celebrated in Japan?

34 Comments

©2022 GPlusMedia Inc.

34 Comments
Login to comment

Irritating

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

I find it baffling.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Without proper trick or treating, carving pumpkins, or bobbing for apples, its just one big Harajuku cosplay party in Shibuya. That's it.

5 ( +12 / -7 )

In Japan, people should know, at least, that Halloween is also known as All Saints’ Eve, the day before All Saints’ Day, and two days before All Souls’ Day. 99% of Japanese people don’t know that Christians celebrate these 3 days and that Halloween is more than just scaring people. It starts there. Which leads to that hollow ignorant commercialism, just like in Christmas and Easter. But hey, nowadays ( including the west ) people just wanna have fun and/or buy stuff, so who am I to judge.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

I still feel it foreign although it's been settled here in Japan for a few decades.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Enjoy watching the Halloween Morning After “hysterics” of JTV announcers & politicians decrying the evils of another, imported “American” holiday yet having no real idea or knowledge of its European origins.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Despite the pending elections and the advanced warnings for youth to stay away from those locations (Japanese Riot Police on parade in yesterday’s “Picture of the Day”) this Halloween is trending with many young people on social media as an end to the SOE’s.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Rumors are much of the revelry this year may start one night early, Sat Oct 30th to possibly circumvent the expected police presencefor election night, Sun night, Oct 31st. 

Tokyo’s Shibuya Crossing AND Osaka’s Sankaku Koen (Triangle Park) in Amemura, Shinsaibashi district, are predicted to have a ‘hell’ of a youth turn out this year.

Please “Stay Safe” everyone and DON’T damage other people’s property and businesses! -
-1 ( +2 / -3 )

They should celebrate it how they like.

Why should an American festival be celebrated in Japan?

It isn’t American. The US celebrates it their way which is all well and good.

Enjoy yourself but don’t be a complete knob and wreck the place.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

In Japan, people should know, at least, that Halloween is also known as All Saints’ Eve, the day before All Saints’ Day, and two days before All Souls’ Day.

A lot of people in the U.S. don’t know that either.

Why should an American festival be celebrated in Japan?

Halloween originated in Europe. Should the U.S. not celebrate it? For that matter, should they get rid of Santa Claus, who is based on the Dutch figure Sinterklaas?

1 ( +6 / -5 )

It's an excuse for Japanese girls to walk around Shibuya in their underwear.

What's not to like about that?

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Halloween was not originally American.

Halloween is thought to date back more than 2,000 years to Samhain, a Celtic New Year's Day that fell on November 1. Demons, fairies, and spirits of the dead were thought to walk the Earth the night before when the separation was thin between the worlds of the living and the dead.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Costume already peaking out @Mr.Kipling, as I recall. - Supposed to be cold out.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

If talking about costume-parties, why not? That's basically what adults do in other countries (mostly anglo-saxon countries with mainly the US).

But if you're talking about the let's-go-to-Shibuya-and-squeeze-our-way-in-a-costume-going-in-circles-with-like-minded, nope, I don't get it...Looks too much like these I-line-up-in-front-of-a-shop-I don't-know-because-there-is-a-line-of-peple-phenomenon which continues to baffle me up to this day...

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Agreed @Mark 10:50pm yet most North American**** Catholics DO know the “good Christian” holidays. (Like much of the dogma, it was beaten into them and Halloween was rebuked as celebrating “the devil*” more than the latter two memorializing the dead.

*[**people should know Halloween is also known as All Saints’ Eve, the day before All Saints’ Day, and 2 days before All Souls’ Day. - “A lot of people in the U.S. don’t know that either.” -*

All Hallows’ Eve is Oct 31st, All Saints’ Day Nov 1st and All Souls’ Day Nov 2nd. Both of the latter celebrated by Mexicans as “El Día de Los Muertos”the Day of the Dead. (*****Declining but 29% of Canadians, 22% of Americans and 82% of Mexicans are still Catholic.)

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Ever been to Tokyo Disneyland @Bradley 12:44pm?

“I found it Amusing that so many adults go to such lengths to participate in what I regard as a Childs event.”-

https://japantoday.com/category/national/tokyo-disneyland-holds-first-halloween-event-in-2-years

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Let's see......

Halloween =

sweets/snacks (Japanese women consume this to no limits)

drinking (salarymen and college students do this, daily.)

cosplay (hoards of people love and participate in that during all times of the year)

fun videos, pictures and parties (things everyone SHOULD love, but mindbogglingly don't in Japan)

yeah..........I can see why so many people in Japan refuse to celebrate it..................

It's funny, how in the country side, people constantly deny that it exists in Japan, then you go to the major part of the city, and you can see all the people enjoying it throughout the week.

Halloween is always a cringe fest when the hypocritical discussions come about the celebration of it. It's as if suddenly, a lot of Japanese people debate it using religion as the excuse.

It's just a time to relax and have fun, give me a break.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

In Japan, people should know, at least, that Halloween is also known as All Saints’ Eve, the day before All Saints’ Day, and two days before All Souls’ Day.

And Christians should know that Halloween is another ancient seasonal festival that the church tried to take over along with Easter and Christmas. It failed with Halloween as activities have been related more to ancient customs than Christian events.

Anyway, here's my annual link to Robert Burns' Halloween poem.

https://poets.org/poem/halloween

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

It's a bit ridiculous in the way an entirely foreign and culturally alien custom has been adopted in Japan for the sole purpose of marketing goods. Halloween has zero connection to Japan first introduced in the 1970s, whereas Christmas can at least claim a connection to Christanity going back to the 1500s.

BUT- the way it's celebrated in Japan is FAR FAR better than the idiotic vanadalism that is euphemistically called "Mischief Night", and the potentially unsafe and burdensome practice of "Trick or Treat" as practiced in the U.S.

In recent years Halloween has shifted to more "Costume Parties" for adults, and in that respect, Japan has picked up the best part.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

For japan, Halloween is more a festival.

In the UK it's All Hallows' Eve, time to brush off that broom stick, the witching hour......ooooooohhhh.

Should You be Afraid of the Witching Hour?.....Shelly Weaver-Cather

https://www.tuftandneedle.com/resources/what-is-the-witching-hour/

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Mr KiplingToday  11:01 am JST

It's an excuse for Japanese girls to walk around Shibuya in their underwear.

What's not to like about that?

Me too.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Why should an American festival be celebrated in Japan?

Oh dear.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

If japan didn't have it in the past, it should have had it. It comes at the end of the harvest season in the northern hemisphere temperate zones, and marks the seasonal transition from warmth/light to cold/darkness. That works perfectly well with Japan's seasonality.

The Japan's own Tsukimi Harvest Moon festival just doesn't cut it, in my opinion. It often comes while the weather is still hot and humid. LOL. Maybe this is why Halloween is so very popular here. Don't know about you, but I'm feeling the transition, physically and spiritually, around now.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Festivals have meanings? Right.... In the UK Christmas is a time to get drunk, meet the family, have office parties and overeat. And for a tiny minority about the birth of baby many years ago.

Japan has Halloween just about right... dressing up as sexy nurses, sexy police officers, sexy sailors, sexy nuns, sexy... you get the picture...

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

LotusKobe 08:42 am JST

Why should an American festival be celebrated in Japan?

It's origins are a kind of a Celtic Obon, when spirits return to earth. Started long ago in Ireland when America was inhabited by natives, buffalo and bison only.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Confounding and odd, just like Japanese Christmas. Halloween in Japan is more like a giant cosplay event; an excuse for the adults to be public nuisances in their favorite costumes.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

OssanAmerica

It's a bit ridiculous in the way an entirely foreign and culturally alien custom has been adopted in Japan for the sole purpose of marketing goods. Halloween has zero connection to Japan...

It's simply a modern day Wakon-Yosai (和魂洋才), Western forms infused with Japanese souls. When Japanese people see Halloween, they see masks and costumes - not a story behind it.

And there is no denying that Japanese people love masks (and costumes). If you have lived in Japan for a while, you just cannot miss seeing masks like Hyottoko, Hannya, Okame, Oni, Ultraman, Kamen Rider, Knight of Ribon, etc.

https://www.japan-talk.com/jt/new/japanese-masks

Japanese love of masks is deeply rooted in history.

Noh (能) is a classic form of Japanese dance-drama, using masks and costumes performed since 14th century.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noh

Kabuki (歌舞伎) is a classic form of Japanese dance-drama, using face paintings and costumes since 17th century.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kabuki

Kagura (神楽) is a classic form of Shinto ritual ceremonial dance, using masks and costumes.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kagura

You just cannot deny Japanese love of masks and costume when you see Yuriko Koike, Tokyo Governor in a Halloween costume like this:

https://www.sankei.com/photo/story/news/161029/sty1610290008-n1.html

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Don't like it? Blame all those ALT's.

To me, Halloween in Tokyo is just another excuse to party.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Funny that there are actually people who believe there is a "proper" way to celebrate Halloween, as though it's a religious holiday of great significance.

It's a day of fun, for kids and adults. No more. All Saints Day is an obscure holiday in most places, and Halloween has even less to do with that than Santa Claus and holiday lighting have to do with the birth of Christ. You could canvas 1000 people celebrating Halloween in the states and be lucky to find 2 or 3 people who have ever heard of All Saints Day. And they only know about it because someone once asked them what the origin of Halloween was, and they looked it up.

Just have fun. Let other people have fun. I can't believe anyone would be in the least annoyed by this.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

When I first came to Japan a long time ago, Halloween was rather unknown for the most part. Now Japanese really enjoy dressing up, having fun and getting into the spooky spirit of things.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

This isn’t really a complaint, but having young kids here its definitely not as good as Halloween in North America. Its more of a thing for young adults here so most of the events aren’t good for kids, and of course you can’t trick or treat, so each year we find ourselves just trying to find out what other international families are doing and try to join them. With Covid though last year and this year have been pretty quiet.

Not Japan’s fault of course, but I do regret that I can’t give my kids a proper fun Halloween like back home.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Love it! No one steals your hard earned bag of candy. Happened to me once, true story!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites