2007 anime art
|Title||Yōkai Supreme Commander|
|Age||Millions of Years|
|Abilities||Command over a large number of yōkai|
|Greatest Headache||Shu no Bon|
|Favorite Pastime||Breaking and entering|
|Least favorite pastime||Being sent millions of years into the past|
|Most threatening incarnation||2007 anime|
|Least threatening incarnation||1996 anime|
|Manga||Yōkai Nurarihyon (1967)|
|Anime||Series 1 Episode 12 (1968)|
|[v · t · e]|
- TV Drama
- Video Games
- Live Action films
The original Nurarihyon, also said to be the leader of all the yōkai, would sneak into someone's house while they were away, drink their tea, and act as if it was their own house. Because it looks human, anyone who saw him would mistake him for the owner of the house, making it very hard to expel. He is the leader of Hyakki Yakō (百鬼夜行) or the "Parade of the Hundred Demons".
Nurarihyon resembles a wrinkled old man with a large gourd-shaped head and usually some form of stubble on his face. He is slim and usually dressed in a fine kimono and haori, though he wore a suit in his first appearance. In some adaptations he has pointy ears.
Shonen Magazine / 1st Anime
He did not appear in the 2nd anime, but was a recurring antagonist from the 3rd series and on.
He appears in the fourth episode of the 3rd anime adaption, Yōkai Nurarihyon. Although he appeared as the main antagonist in the Shukan Jitsuwa manga and the Monday Dramaland TV movie, it wasn't until the 3rd anime that he was established as the "Supreme Commander of the Japanese Yōkai".
While he appears throughout the series, one of his first appearances was in episode 47, The Great Yōkai trial (Part 2). Nurarihyon's 4th anime incarnation is the least threatening of them all.
Nurarihyon is a cruel yōkai who commits evil deeds and uses deceit and cunning to oppose Kitarō. Depending on the adaptation, he can be portrayed as both a legitimate threat or a more comedic villain. He frequently employs other powerful yōkai to help him defeat Kitarō and friends. Sometimes he tricks these yōkai into joining him, other times they are loyal minions who are in on a larger plan. In the anime (starting with the 3rd series) his right hand man is Shu no Bon, though his most frequent ally across all adaptations is Jakotsu-Babaa.
In his first appearance, he had been living among humans under the alias Yamada for a century. By the time of the story Yōkai Nurarihyon, he has amassed a significant amount of wealth but passes himself off as poor. He sneaks into other people's apartment, much like the Nurarihyon of legend, and sets off bombs as an act of terrorism. Worried Kitarō will catch onto him sooner or later, he works with Nezumi-Otoko to trap him in concrete. Only Kitarō's hand is not encased in the concrete, so Nurarihyon mockingly shakes it. Because of this, Kitarō is able to curse him and control his hands. He seeks help from Jakotsu-Babaa and they try to capture the newly escaped Kitarō by tricking him into drinking from a magic jar that will swallow him. Kitarō instead outsmarts them and uses a magical millstone to send them backwards in time to the prehistoric ages.
In the Shukan Jitsuwa story Baseball Mania, he is the principal of Under the Grave High School. He plans to use his school's baseball team to take control of the baseball scene in the human world, but humans catch wind of the plan and hire Kitarō to stop him.
In the manga Saishinban GeGeGe no Kitarō, which wwas serialized at the same time as the 3rd anime was airing, he is a recurring villain. It is established that, after being sent back to prehistoric times, he has lived until present day, having grown more powerful and developing a deep hatred of humans. He is defeated when he falls into Mount Mihara during an eruption, but he later returns and destroys Izu Ōshima, eating everything in sight and earning the name "The Eating Demon" from the locals. In this state he completely loses his senses and intelligence, and even Kitarō and Medama-Oyaji try to just escape from him. Eventually Kitarō is able to destroy him with a desperate attack.
In the manga Kitarō Kunitori Monogatari, during the battle with Mu in Hakone Castle, Kemedama convinces Nurarihyon to back up Kitarō for the sake of all yōkai. In one of the only instances where Nurarihyon lives up to his title "Supreme Commander", he commands armies of Wanyūdō, Hitotsume and Tanuki, a Karasu Tengu air force, and fights Mu himself as well.
He appears in Ch. 25 of the manga Yōkai Sen Monogatari. He tries to frame Kitarō and put him on trial, but he is ultimately thwarted. He is sentenced to be executed via 500 Years of Melting at the hands of the Tengu Police.