Ranked #2513

Yami Shibai

Alternative Titles

English: Yamishibai: Japanese Ghost Stories
Synonyms: Theater of Darkness
Japanese: 闇芝居


Type: TV
Episodes: 13
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Jul 15, 2013 to Sep 30, 2013
Premiered: Summer 2013
Broadcast: Unknown
Producers: TV Tokyo
Licensors: Sentai Filmworks
Studios: ILCA
Source: Original
Duration: 4 min. per ep.
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or older


Score: 7.221 (scored by 12,398 users)
Ranked: #25132
Popularity: #1559
Members: 24,184
Favorites: 76
1 indicates a weighted score. Please note that 'Not yet aired' titles are excluded.
2 based on the top anime page. Please note that 'Not yet aired' and 'R18+' titles are excluded.


Akin to TV Tokyo's Folktales from Japan, Yamishibai: Japanese Ghost Stories takes a narrative format to explore the rich occult history from Japan. Moreover, the storytelling techniques in this brand new series will mimic kamishibai—a traditional storytelling technique inspired by the artistic usage of paper figures and scrolls.

Yamishibai is a picture-story style of animation whose motif is surrounded and based off rumors and urban legends throughout the history of Japan.

(Source: Crunchyroll)


No background information has been added to this title. Help improve our database by adding background information here.

Promotional Videos

No promotional video has been added to this title. Help improve our database by adding a promotional video here.

Related Anime

Characters & Voice Actors

Tsuda, Kanji
Tsuda, Kanji


Takashima, Tomoya
Takashima, Tomoya
Episode Director
Kumamoto, Hiromu
Kumamoto, Hiromu
Hatsune, Miku
Hatsune, Miku
Theme Song Performance

More episodes Episodes(13/13)

Episode Title Aired
1 The Talisman Woman
Ofuda Onna (お札女)
Jul 15, 2013
2 Zanbai
Zanbai (惨拝(ざんばい))
Jul 22, 2013
3 The Family Rule
Kakun (家訓(かくん))
Jul 22, 2013
4 Hair
Kami (かみ)
Aug 5, 2013
5 The Next Floor
Ikai (異階)
Aug 12, 2013

Opening Theme

No opening themes have been added to this title. Help improve our database by adding an opening theme here.

Ending Theme

"Kaifuu Emaki" by AVtechNO! and Teniwoha (performed using Hatsune Miku)

Write a review | More reviewsReviews

Aug 10, 2013
Esta review también está en español.

Step right up and have a look… It's time for Theater of Darkness…

With this ominous presentation, a mysterious man wearing a golden mask invites us to enjoy Yamishibai: Japanese Ghost Stories (Theater of darkness, and from now on, YS), an anthology of Japanese rumors and urban legends, full of spirits, ghost, curses, and all those creepy things we like so much. No gore or extreme violence here, only pure, clean terror.

Unlike creations like Ayakashi: Japanese Classic Horror or Kousetsu Hyaku Monogatari, which both had a more medieval setting (or at least, before the Meiji era), YS take place in read more
I found this review Helpful
Aug 4, 2013
Yami Shibai actually is not bad. It may be rated G, but it can get insanely creepy at times. The stories are also well written, unique, and diverse. They are the type of short stories that stick with you. I also like how most of the ending mainly implied, but open to interpretation.

I don't care much for the artwork. It is very artistic. The animation mimics kamishibai well. It's just a little too different for my taste. It has a semi realist style too it. It kind of blurs the border as to what defines an anime at times. On the bright read more
I found this review Helpful
Oct 23, 2013
Sometimes the simplest of ideas work surprisingly well. Yamishibai: Japanese Ghost Stories (or Theater of Darkness) is essentially the animated equivalence of telling spooky stories by the campfire. Of course, unlike campfire ghost stories, it has the advantage of telling its story through visuals and atmosphere setting sound design. This is as rudimentary as storytelling gets, short and quick to the point. Yet these tales of horror are plenty effective; distilling the tense atmosphere and shocks which make those short ghost stories so much fun.

Yamishibai wholly commits to creating a creepy atmosphere from beginning to end. The short opening for every episode has a man read more
I found this review Helpful
Mar 29, 2015
Remember those ghost stories your uncle told you when your parents left you at his house for the night so they could have a good time? Well here are those very ghost stories in anime form.

I would like to start with the anime art style yes it is quirky but it fits the mood of the narrating and actual story as well as that when the characters do speak the actors who play the characters sound like they are actually very terrified so all due props to them for doing such an excellent job at acting.

If you are looking for a short 5 minute read more
I found this review Helpful


Anime: Kowabon
Both are short-format and of horror stories each episode. The animation for Yami Shibai is a bit better but if you're looking for more horror, these are both filled with jump scares. 
reportRecommended by Kosshi
Anime: Kagewani
Both are similar concerning their visual language in terms of character design, backgrounds and the overall mood. Also the powerful element of surprise which makes a prominent horror story is well implemented episodically by Takashima Tomoya, who is the director for both titles. Kagewani emphasizes UMAs while the latter deals more with the supernatural phenomenon but isn't lacking in monsters. 
reportRecommended by UNIC
Anime: Jigoku Shoujo
Tales of horror are told in these two series. They focus on almost an entirely different character/story every time and these usually involves strange events dealing with supernatural elements.

The elements of horror are present as the characters in the stories are often met with unfortunate results. 
reportRecommended by Stark700
Anime: Mononoke
-Both shows contain Japanese folklore
-Both contain an eerie sort of horror and atmosphere

-Yami Shibai is a short while Mononoke is not.
-Yami Shibai is episodic while Mononoke contains arks of usually three episodes.

I would recommend either show to anyone who enjoys the haunting, eerie sort of Japanese horror as well as something unique. 
reportRecommended by Ausrine
Anime: Yonimo Osoroshii Grimm Douwa
Both are collection of short horror stories. While Yami Shibai has 13 four minute long stories, Yonimo Osoroshii Nihon Mukashibanashi has three 20 minute long stories.
reportRecommended by abystoma2
Anime: Gendai Kibunroku Kaii Monogatari
Both are compilation of short horror stories. Both have simmilar "simple" animation with very few action, but both still manage to send some chills down your spine. Both are based on Japanese urban legends. If you liked one, check the other one. 
reportRecommended by abystoma2

Recent News

Q1 2016 Anime & Manga Licenses [Update 2/5]

Q1 2016 Anime & Manga Licenses [Update 2/5]

In this thread, you'll find a comprehensive list of anime and manga licensed in the first quarter (Jan-Mar) of 2016. Winter anime which were licensed before the...read more

3rd Season of 'Yami Shibai' Announced for January 2016

3rd Season of 'Yami Shibai' Announced for January 2016

The official site of the Yami Shibai anime has announced that the short series will receive a third season. The anime is scheduled to air in January 2016 on TV Tokyo...read more

Recent Forum Discussion

Poll: Yami Shibai Episode 9 Discussion
Stark700 - Sep 1, 2013
30 replies by leonstone »»
Feb 7, 1:47 PM
Poll: Yami Shibai Episode 7 Discussion ( 1 2 )
melina_putri - Aug 25, 2013
57 replies by icanhazqnime »»
Feb 6, 12:03 AM