Hanako-san or Toire no Hanako-san (Hanako of the toilet) is a Japanese urban legend about the spirit of a young World War II-era girl who haunts school bathrooms in Friday the 13th. She allegedly appears when one shouts her name.


According to the legend, a person who goes to the third stall in the girls' bathroom on the third floor in Friday the 13th and knocks three times before asking "Are you there, Hanako-san", will hear a voice answer "I'm here". If the person enters the stall there will be a small girl in a red skirt.

Hanako-san is a popular and widespread urban legend, often played by school children as a rite of courage, or a method of hazing for new students, similar to the Bloody Mary urban legend in Western schools.[citation needed]


Hanako-san has been noted to have various origins and behaviors, depending on the area or school, and is a widespread legend across Japan.[citation needed] Her appearance can also be different, but is usually that of a young girl with bobbed hair and a red skirt. She can be either mischievous, malevolent or benign.

Yamagata prefecture: After Hanako-san has answered and one enters the stall, he or she will find and be eaten by a three headed lizard who had mimicked a girl's voice.[citation needed]

Iwate prefecture: After one has called Hanako-san, a large white hand emerges from the door.[citation needed]

Kanagawa prefecture: After one has called her, a blood stained hand will appear.[1]

"Hanako" was a common and typical girl's name in Japan during the 1950s when the legend supposedly began.[2]

In fiction


  • Hanako-san is one of the main characters in the manga Hanako-san and the Teller of Allegory.
  • Toire no Hanako-san is one of the death games the high school students play in Kami-sama no Iutoori II


  • Hanako (1995)
  • Shinsei toire no Hanako-san (1998)
  • Hanako of the Toilet (2013)[3]


  • Toilet no Hanako-san
  • Hanako makes a brief appearance in Ghost Stories
  • In Episode 10 of the Anime Kimi to Boku, Chizuru Tachibana dresses up as Hanako-san for his class's Haunted House at the school festival.
  • In the Anime Series Haunted Junction Hanako-san is a school spirit "helping out" boys on the toilet. Episode 6 completely focusses on Hanako and one episode shows the various versions of the ghost Hanako
  • In Episode 2 of the Anime Da Capo II, Hanako-san is mentioned as a spirit haunting the girls' restrooms
  • In Episode 5 of the Anime Mahoromatic, Hanako-san can be seen during a montage of school mysteries.
  • In Episode 2 of Hell Teacher Nuubee, the title character and two of his students seek for Hanako-san in the school toilets. Instead, they find the spirit of a little girl (apparently also named Hanako, though it's not confirmed), who died during the Tokyo bombings in World War II. Feeling sorry for her, Nuubee comforts the ghost girl and sends her to Heaven with his powers.

Visual Novels

  • Hanako is the name of one of the main characters in the OELVN Katawa Shoujo. At one point in the story, another character refers to her as the "Mystery Toilet Girl."
  • Higanbana no Saku Yoru ni is a story that creates a legend similar to this one.

See also

External links


  2. Yokai Attack!: The Japanese Monster Survival Guide by Hiroko Yoda, Matt Alt, and Tatsuya Morino; Kodansha International, 2008, ISBN 4-7700-3070-3
  3. New Hanako Of The Toilet Horror Film To Be Released June 29th. Japanverse. Retrieved on May 24, 2013.
This article uses material from the Wikipedia article Hanako-san, that was deleted or is being discussed for deletion, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Author(s): Tbhotch Search for "Hanako-san" on Google
View Wikipedia's deletion log of "Hanako-san"