Hell Girl

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Hell Girl
Jigoku Shoujo Hell Girl.png
The cover of eighth Japanese DVD compilation of the second season released by Aniplex on August 22, 2007
(Jigoku Shōjo)
Genre Horror, Mystery, Supernatural
Anime television series
Directed by Takahiro Omori
Written by Hiroshi Watanabe
Studio Studio Deen
Licensed by
Network Animax, MBS, Tokyo MX, Kids Station
English network
Original run October 4, 2005April 4, 2006
Episodes 26 (List of episodes)
Written by Miyuki Etō
Published by Kodansha
English publisher
Demographic Shojo
Magazine Nakayoshi
Original run November 2005September 2008
Volumes 9
Anime television series
Hell Girl: Two Mirrors
Directed by Takahiro Ōmori
Written by Ken'ichi Kanemaki
Studio Studio Deen
Licensed by
Network Animax, MBS, Tokyo MX, Kids Station
English network
Original run October 7, 2006April 6, 2007
Episodes 26 (List of episodes)
Television drama
Directed by Makoto Naganuma
Studio Izumi TV Production
Network Nippon Television
Original run November 4, 2006January 27, 2007
Episodes 12 (List of episodes)
Jigoku Shōjo Akekazura / Mioyosuga
Developer Compile Heart
Platform Nintendo DS, PlayStation 2
Released September 27, 2007 (DS), September 19, 2009 (PS2)
Anime television series
Hell Girl: Three Vessels
Directed by Hiroshi Watanabe
Written by Ken'ichi Kanemaki
Studio Studio Deen
Licensed by
Network Animax, MBS, Tokyo MX
Original run October 4, 2008April 4, 2009
Episodes 26 (List of episodes)
New Hell Girl
Written by Miyuki Etō
Published by Kodansha
Demographic Shojo
Magazine Nakayoshi
Original run November 2008August 2009
Volumes 3
Hell Girl R
Written by Miyuki Etō
Published by Kodansha
Demographic Shojo
Magazine Nakayoshi
Original run September 2009 – ongoing
Volumes 10
Portal icon Anime and Manga portal

Hell Girl (地獄少女 Jigoku Shōjo?), also known as Jigoku Shōjo: Girl from Hell, is an anime series produced by Aniplex and Studio Deen. It focuses on the existence of a supernatural system that allows people to take revenge by having other people sent to Hell via the services of the mysterious titular character and her assistants who implement this system.[1] Revenge, injustice, hatred, and the nature of human emotions are common themes throughout the series.

It premiered across Japan on numerous television stations, including Animax, Tokyo MX, MBS and others, between October 4, 2005 and April 4, 2006. Following the success of the first season, the series was followed soon after into a second, Jigoku Shōjo Futakomori (地獄少女 二籠?), which premiered October 7, 2006 across Japan on Animax.[citation needed] A live-action television series adaptation started airing in Japan on Nippon Television from November 4, 2006.[citation needed] A third season of the anime, further continuing the series, was first announced on the mobile version of the series' official website Jigoku Tsūshin.[2] The official title of the third season was announced to be Jigoku Shōjo Mitsuganae (地獄少女 三鼎?).[3] and began airing on Japanese TV October 4, 2008.[4]


Most episodes are self-contained short stories in which the series narrates the suffering of a different individual caused by one or more antagonists. In general during each arc, the protagonists' dramas are explained in detail from the start of their grudges, through the escalation of their torment until it becomes unbearable and they resort to accessing the Hell Correspondence website. Although in general, the client gives the protagonist a chance, he or she usually ends up pulling the string on his or her doll and sending the antagonist to hell. Once they have pulled the string, before taking the antagonist to hell, Ai Enma punishes the person for his or her sins with the help of her companions.

In the first season, the story soon follows a journalist named Shibata Hajime, a former blackmailer, and his daughter Tsugumi who share a strange connection with the Hell Girl as they investigate the truth behind the Hell Girl. In the second season, a mysterious young girl from Hell, named Kikuri who is able to travel freely between Earth and the Twilight realm where Ai resides, is introduced. Later, the plot centers around Takuma Kurebayashi, a boy who is blamed by his townsfolk for causing disappearances around the town that are in reality caused by the townsfolk using the Hell Correspondence. In the third season, Kikuri returns to recruit Ai's assistants along with a yōkai named Yamawaro, who accepts an old offer from Ai to become her fourth assistant. The story follows Ai's mysterious possession of a young schoolgirl, Yuzuki Mikage.

Hell Correspondence[edit]

The medium through which a client contacts Ai Enma has changed over the centuries. Initially clients would write the names of whom they hated on an ema, which later changed to sending a letter to the address appearing in a three-column newspaper advertisement only visible to those with enough hatred. Once the internet became available, people could access the Hell Correspondence website, otherwise known as the "Hotline to Hell". Soon after, the site was adapted into a mobile version that could be accessed from cell phones.[5]

Each medium can only be used at midnight by one who harbors a desire for revenge against their object of hatred. Should someone submit the name of someone against whom they bear a grudge or immense hatred, and their request is accepted, Ai Enma will take them to a realm of perpetual twilight where she offers them a straw doll, one of her companions, with a red string wound around its neck and describe to the client the details of their contract; should the client pull the string tied around the doll's neck, she will ferry the target of the revenge straightaway to Hell. However, once the client's life has ended, he or she, too, will go to Hell, and a black crest-shaped mark appears on the client's chest to serve as a permanent reminder of this and their decision to send someone to Hell. However, this mark is no guarantee that the person themselves won't be sent to hell by another client.



Part of a painting by Kawanabe Kyōsai, featured in the opening theme of Hell Girl

The Hell Girl anime series is produced by Aniplex and Studio Deen. It is directed by Takahiro Ōmori and written by Hiroshi Watanabe. The first season spanned 26 episodes and premiered across Japan on Animax between October 4, 2005, and April 4, 2006. The series' second season premiered on October 7, 2006 across Japan on Animax. Animax also later translated and dubbed both the first[citation needed] and second seasons[citation needed] of the series into English for broadcast across its English language networks in Southeast Asia and South Asia, and also aired the series across its other networks worldwide in various other languages and different several regions, including Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea, Vietnam, and Europe. The first season of the series was also licensed for North American distribution by FUNimation. The U.S. cable/satellite channel IFC announced in September 2007[6] that it acquired Hell Girl from FUNimation, which then premiered on July 9, 2008.[7] Section23 Films announced that Sentai Filmworks has licensed the second season of the series, with the first DVD set shipping on May 25, 2010, and the second set on July 27.[8] On June 24, 2010, Section23 Films announced that Sentai has also the third season of Hell Girl, under the subtitle Three Vessels. The first set was released on September 28, 2010,[9] followed by the second set released on November 30, 2010. Funimation later dropped the series from internet streaming and home media distribution after reaching the end of the license term in early 2013.


A total of six soundtracks were released by Sony Music Entertainment. Two original soundtrack albums were released for Hell Girl. The first album contains twenty-four tracks and was released on January 25, 2006.[10] The second album contains twenty-six tracks and was released on April 19, 2006.[11] Two original soundtrack albums were released for Jigoku Shōjo Futakomori. The first album contains twenty-three tracks and was released on January 24, 2007.[12] The second album contains twenty-three tracks and was released on March 21, 2007.[13] Two original soundtrack albums were released for Jigoku Shōjo: Mitsuganae. The first album contained twenty-eight tracks and was released on December 17, 2008.[14] The second album contained twenty-seven tracks and was released on March 4, 2009.[15]


A manga adaptation all have featured art by Miyuki Etō (永遠 幸 Etō Miyuki?). It has been serialized in Kodansha's Nakayoshi shōjo manga magazine since October 2005. The manga was published into three different titles. The first shares the same name of the anime and a total of three volumes were released from January 25, 2006 to October 6, 2008.[16][17] The manga was originally been licensed by Del Rey Manga, and the first volume was released January 2008. The second volume was released in May 2008.

The second manga, titled Shin Jigoku Shōjo (新・地獄少女 "New Hell Girl"?), released a total of three volumes from March 19, 2009 to November 6, 2009.[18][19] The third, titled Jigoku Shōjo R (地獄少女R "Hell Girl R"?), released a total of eleven volumes from March 19, 2010 to July 15, 2013.[20][21] A single manga volume, titled Jigoku Shōjo Enma Ai Serekushon Geki Kowa Sutōrī (地獄少女 閻魔あいセレクション 激こわストーリー Hell Girl: Enma Ai Selection, Super Scary Story?) was released on April 30, 2014.[22]

Live action[edit]

Hell Girl was adapted into a single live-action television drama series that premiered on Nippon Television from November 4, 2006 spanning 12 half-hour episodes. The series was directed by Makoto Naganuma. The theme song for the series is "Dream Catcher" by Olivia Lufkin.[23] The live action adaptation features Sayuri Iwata as Ai Enma, Kazuki Kato as Ren Ichimoku, Aya Sugimoto as Hone Onna, Saaya Irie as Tsugumi Shibata, and Kazuhiko Nishimura as Hajime Shibata. Hisahiro Ogura, the actor who portrays Wanyūdō in the live-action adaptation is also the Japanese male narrator at the beginning of every episode of the anime series. Eriko Matsushima retains her role as Ai's grandmother in the live action series.


# Title Original air date
1 "Cracked Time"
"Hibiwareta Jikan" (ひび割れた時間) 
November 4, 2006[24]
Yu Miyazuki is relentlessly bullied by Rina Endou after being accepted into a university. She decides to contact Hell Correspondence and types in Endou's name, but decides not to submit it. The next day, Yu is forced by Endou and her gang to shoplift, where she is almost caught, and again she types her name but does not submit it. As punishment for failing to shoplift, Endou forces Yu onto an older male and takes a picture of them. Yu runs away and tries to kill herself by jumping off of a building but is saved by Ai who gives her a doll. Her university application is denied after Endou shows off the pictures and tells her teachers that Yu was the shoplifter. Yu then sends Endou to Hell when she refuses to admit to what she did and breaks her father's watch, and finds out that Endou bullied her because she got into the university and not her. Despite this, Yu decides to try for the university again. 
2 "The Boy in the Box"
"Hako no Naka no Shōnen" (箱の中の少年) 
November 11, 2006[25]
Daichi Nizushima is a young boy who has locked himself in his bedroom. After his father's death, Makoto Shinoda, a manager for the company his father worked at, tells Daichi's sister that he believes it is Daichi's fault because he does not come out of his room. Daichi's decides to access Hell Correspondence and types in Shinoda's name before being given the straw doll. He leaves his room and gives his sister evidence that Shinoda might have contributed to his death, but she is chased down and falls down a flight of stairs. Daichi looks at his father's blog and realizes that he committed suicide because he was given too much work to finish and is computer illiterate, and was harassed by Shinoda for this. After finding out about his sister's injury, Daichi pulls the string and sends Shinoda to Hell. The next day, Daichi tears down the cardboard on his window and decides it is finally time to see the outside world. 
3 "A Baby's Dream"
"Midorigo no Yume" (嬰児の夢) 
November 18, 2006[26]
A young mother-to-be named Shoko has already had two abortions, but still wants to have children with her lover, Seichi Toriumi, who works as her manager. He says that he plans to divorce his wife, Mari, but said that his wife must not know about Shoko's pregnancy. Shoko types Mari's name into Hell Correspondence, but decides against it and aborts the baby. A few days later, Shoko sees Seichi at the store with a pregnant Mari and their daughter, despite the fact that Seichi said that he has not touched his wife in years. Devastated, Shoko attempts to call Seichi but speaks with his wife about this; Mari does not believe her. As Shoko showers, she feels pain in her womb and is told by her doctor to give up on ever having children now. Knowing her relationship was a lie, Shoko contacts Hell Correspondence and sends Seichi's name. When she is not given an immediate response, she attempts to commit suicide. Ai brings her to her world where she is saved, and gives her the straw doll. Shoko pulls the string and sends her lover to Hell. Later, Shoko prays for her baby and Ai's assistants say that they can never meet. 
4 "Dusk"
"Ōma no Migiri" (逢魔の砌) 
November 25, 2006[27]
Shibata Tsugumi wakes up from a nightmare and is later tucked in by her father, Hajime. Nakashima Kenta accesses Hell Correspondence and types Katsuragi Yoshitaka after having a flashback about a car accident. Next morning, Hajime meets with Asou Mari, who he's blackmailing. He later meets up with his editor, Inagaki, who has him investigate a car accident where a student died. Hajime sees Katsuragi, the owner of the car, asking for donations then advices Mari, who was in the car during the accident, to sever ties with Katsuragi but she roughly shoves him out of her car. She disappears seconds later. As Hajime discusses what he'd witnessed with a friend, they are interrupted by Tsugumi and the father and daughter walk home together. Tsugumi has a vision of Kenta accepting a straw doll from Ai and describes the doll. Hajime later accesses the site but thinks it's a hoax. The next day, Hajime sees Kenta about to pull the string when Hajime stopped him. They discuss the accident and Hell Correspondence and Hajime goes to call Inagaki. He tells him to drop the investigation and Kenta sends Katsuragi to Hell after confronting him. Hajime sees Katsuragi disappear. 
5 "The Epitaph of Lies"
"Itsuwari no Bohimei" (偽りの墓碑銘) 
December 2, 2006[28]
A young woman with a straw doll runs from a man with a knife and Tsugumi has a vision of it. Ai and Wanyuudo are by a grave in the forest as the doll disappears and a hand shoots up from the grave. A trapped young woman accesses the site just before a man comes into the room. In the morning, Tsugumi has another vision of Ai giving the trapped woman a doll; she sees a church in Hachiouji. Inagaki and Hajime briefly talk before they are told to watch the news about the forest grave. Tsugumi calls her father about her latest vision but Hajime says that he was busy. Tsugumi angrily ends the call and goes to Hachiouji. Hajime went to the forest grave and discuss the murder with the inspector before recalling Tsugumi's first vision and calls her. Tsugumi, meanwhile, finds a room full of blood before being discovered by the killer. She is thrown into the room with the trapped woman and their captor, obsessed with having sisters, comes in, forces them to eat peaches and knocks the doll off a high shelf. The woman reaches for the doll. Tsugumi bites their captor and he returns with a knife as Hajime finds the house. The men fight for the knife and the woman pulls the string as the killer prepares to stab Tsugumi. Tsugumi feels Ai's presence before the killer disappears. The police later rescue the three. 
6 "The Red Thread of Promise"
"Yakusoku no Akai Ito" (約束の赤い糸) 
December 9, 2006[29]
A young schoolgirl, Sachi, is seen entering the name "Mako" on Hell Correspondence, and submitting it. Her phone immediately rings, and it is Mako, saying that she knows that Sachi has cursed her. Mako is a girl who lives at an abandoned warehouse, who saved Sachi as a young child by killing her tutor who was sexually abusing her by pushing him down a flight of stairs. Mako made them Red Thread bracelets to promise they would be friends forever, but Mako proves more mean then loyal. When Mako destroys Sachi's bedroom, accuses her crush, Minegi, of rape and almost kills him by pushing him down a long flight of steps, Sachi pulls the string on the straw doll. It is then revealed that Mako and Sachi are the same person, with Mako being another personality that Sachi created due to her abuse and started treating Sachi cruelly because she was afraid that Minegi's presence in Sachi's life would make her disappear. Mako's half is sent to Hell while Sachi remains in the mortal world, to struggle through life alone. 
7 "A Promising Temptation"
"Amai Yūwaku" (甘い誘惑) 
December 16, 2006[30]
Tsugumi senses Ai during the wedding reception of Hajime's co-worker, Miharu, and it is announced that the bride's father is also engaged. When Miharu comes back from her honeymoon, she discovers that her father was conned by his fiance, Kiriko. Miharu's parents-in-law also want the marriage nullified due to her father. She confronts Kiriko that night but she drives off after insulting her father. Miharu receives a straw doll and Tsugumi has a vision of it. Miharu tells Hajime about Kiriko and he takes the doll to keep her from condemning herself. He throws it away and he and Tsugumi have another fight as they have different opinions about Hell Girl. Miharu returns home, finds out that they could lose the house and gets into a fight with her father. That night, Ai returns the doll to her and learns from her ex-husband that her father is begging him to get back together with her. Miharu later tells Hajime and Tsugumi that she didn't pull the string and that everything was turning out fine. Her father, however, sees Kiriko with another man and she pretends not to know him; causing him to jump off a building. After the memorial service, Miharu accesses Hell Correspondence once more. 
8 "Miracle of Christmas Eve"
"Seiya no Kiseki" (聖夜の奇跡) 
December 23, 2006[31]
Near Christmas, Tsugumi has a vision of Ai walking down the street and going into a bookstore. Hajime goes to the same store and finds a 50-year-old book with a story called "Descend into Hell." As he reads the story, he sees similarities to Hell Girl and finds the publisher of the book and gets the address of the writer, Kitagawa. Hajime goes to meet the writer but Kitagawa refuses to talk. He recalls a conversation with the publisher about a serial rape-murder case from 50 years ago, where Kitagawa's wife was a victim; it was the same as the story. He meets with his inspector friend and he said that the suspect disappeared in front of the police sent to arrest him. He returns to speak to Kitagawa but the older man has a heart attack. After recovering, Kitagawa was, at first, uncooperative but later told him his story and shows him what he's been working on for the past 50 years, paintings of Enma Ai. The largest painting starts crying as Kitagawa dies and is brought to Hell by Ai, whom he greeted like an old friend, and she gave him a small smile. Hajime walks to his friend's restaurant, where he was supposed to spend Christmas with him and Tsugumi, and finds that they waited for him. 
9 "Compensation for Lying"
"Nise no Daishō" (偽の代償) 
January 6, 2007[32]
Yuuki Natsuko and her friends meet at a restaurant and discuss the reason why she hasn't been going back to school. On the way home, Natsuko encounters her teacher, Onda, but Natsuko runs away. In her room, she accesses Hell Correspondence to get rid of her stalker, Onda. After a confrontation with Natsuko, Onda speak with Hajime, who's working on the sexual harassment case on campus. Onda says that he was set up by Natsuko and he lost his job and his family. The article was published and Natsuko feels the public backlash. As she was about to pull the string, Onda visits and says he will take the matter to court. Inside the house, he was once again set up by Natsuko and is arrested. Onda's son, Takuto, starts to suspect Natsuko and follows her around. He reveals that he contacted Hell Girl to send her to Hell if she didn't tell the truth. They fight over the doll and Natsuko's own doll falls out of her bag. They pull the string at the same time. It is revealed during Natsuko's punishment that her doll was a fake. Onda is freed and Hajime discovers the mark on Takuto, who regrets nothing. 
10 "Memories of Sadness"
"Kanashimi no Kioku" (悲しみの記憶) 
January 13, 2007[33]
Kyoko threatens the hospital staff with a straw doll but is steadily losing her memories. Honda, a nurse and a doctor, who did not help the daughter after cardiac arrest, plan to do something about the doll as Kyoko may have overheard Honda's tactless disregard for her daughter's life. Honda helps around the house to look for the doll and steals money as well. Ai speaks with Wanyuudo about their client as the mother barges into the room and mistakes Ai for her daughter. The father comes home from work and Kyoko tells him about her day only for him to get angry. She goes through the notebook she writes everything in and sees a reference to Hell Correspondence. She accesses the site but it doesn't appear. Kyoko asks Ai to pretend to be her daughter when she realizes that she is dead. Honda finds the doll in the daughter's room and Kyoko confronts her. Honda steals the notebook and the doll after taunting her. Ai takes back the doll and returns it to Kyoko after giving her back her memories. In grief and anger, she pulls the string. Kyoko loses all her memories soon after. 
11 "Darkness of the Known World, Part. 1"
"Utushiyo no Yami" (現し世の闇 前編) 
January 20, 2007[34]
Tsugumi remembers her mother, who disappeared 5 years ago, while Ai is in a room with a picture of the Shibata's with Hajime crossed out. Hajime, because of the inspector's visit, investigates Wakatsuki Jun and the Natsume Group. Tsugumi has a vision of the Group beating him up for snooping around. As Wakatsuki is about to shoot Hajime, someone sent him to Hell and Ai has Ren impersonate Wakatsuki to save Hajime. To make up for worrying Tsugumi, Hajime plans to take her to the beach but later learns that she's been kidnapped and her bag is left in front of Tetsu's restaurant. He contacts the police who tell him that the Natsume Group aren't involved and asks if his missing wife, Ayumi, might be the kidnapper. Hajime storms off and meets Ai, who shows him the room. Hajime realizes that Ayumi's disappearance and Tsugumi's kidnapping are connected. That night, he receives a video of Tsugumi that says she will be killed tomorrow at sunset. He accesses Hell Correspondence and stares at the screen. 
12 "Darkness of the Known World, Part. 2"
"Utushiyo no Yami" (現し世の闇 後編) 
January 27, 2007[35]
Hajime is brought to Ai's world where she shows him the day Ayumi disappeared. Ai hands him a doll but reminds him that even if the kidnapper is sent to Hell, Tsugumi is still missing and he hesitates. The inspector then tells him that Tsugumi might have been kidnapped because of an article concerning Sawazaki someone wrote using Hajime's name 6 years ago. He also tells him that Inagaki had a debt with the Natsume Group. Hajime runs into the office and punches Inagaki, who reveals that he wrote the article. Inagaki then tells him that Sawazaki's wife was Nishi, Tetsu's older sister. Testu calls Hajime and tells him why he kidnapped Tsugumi. Hajime meets Ai in front of Testu's restaurant and shows him that Testu was the one who sent Ayumi to Hell. She and her assistants confront Hajime and offer him a doll again. He takes it, is transported to Testu's hideout and sees Tsugumi not moving. Ai appears before the two men and shows Tetsu Inagaki's deal with Wakatsuki and Hajime's confrontation about the article. Hajime takes out the doll and returns it to Ai after seeing the pain Tetsu is in. However, Tetsu takes the doll and sends himself to Hell. Tsugumi, who's alive, and Hajime, who's cursed, go home. Meanwhile, the inspector says that the Natsume Group is dissolved and loosens his tie and reveals the mark. Ai continues to send people to Hell. 

Video games[edit]

Hell Girl has been adapted into a video game for the Nintendo DS entitled Jigoku Shōjo Akekazura (地獄少女 朱蘰?), which was developed by Compile Heart and released in Japan on September 27, 2007.[36][37] Compile Heart made a PlayStation 2 version entitled Jigoku Shōjo Mioyosuga (地獄少女 澪縁?) released on September 17, 2009.[38] A puzzle game has also been released on the Konami Net DX service for i-mode-compatible mobile phones.[39]


Dominic Nguyen wrote "The 40-page vignettes don't have as much depth as 25 minutes of television, and if you finish the whole book in one sitting, you may get the feeling that you've read the same chapter five times with different characters. But if you give yourself some time to digest each story, you will understand the sinister beauty of Hell Girl."[40]


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  15. ^ "Jigoku Shōjo Mitsuganae Original Sound Track -Soushoku-". Neowing. Retrieved 2009-04-22. 
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  32. ^ "Story: Episode 9" (in Japanese). Nippon Television Network Corporation. Retrieved 2009-05-05. 
  33. ^ "Story: Episode 10" (in Japanese). Nippon Television Network Corporation. Retrieved 2009-05-05. 
  34. ^ "Story: Episode 11" (in Japanese). Nippon Television Network Corporation. Retrieved 2009-05-05. 
  35. ^ "Story: Episode 12" (in Japanese). Nippon Television Network Corporation. Retrieved February 3, 2014. 
  36. ^ ""地獄少女"にまつわる謎とは? 『地獄少女 朱蘰(あけかづら)』" (in Japanese). Famitsu. June 28, 2007. Retrieved 2011-07-08. 
  37. ^ "地獄少女 朱蘰" (in Japanese). Amazon.co.jp. Retrieved December 18, 2013. 
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  39. ^ "アニメやマンガのヒットに続け iモードで『地獄少女ぱずるだま』配信" (in Japanese). Famitsu. April 18, 2007. Retrieved 2011-07-08. 
  40. ^ Nguyen, Dominic. "Hell Girl". Newtype USA. 7 (1) p. 106. January 2008. ISSN 1541-4817.

External links[edit]