The Monstrosity/Cuteness Spectrum


Why do we mix cuties and monsters?  Katie Swift/Getty Images
Why do we mix cuties and monsters? Katie Swift/Getty Images

It seems the unavoidable fate of all terrifying monsters, doesn’t it? We reduce the most horrifying creatures of myth, legend and folklore to an adorable kids costume or a mega-cute illustration. Why can’t we help ourselves? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the battle between cuteness and monstrosity, with examples drawn from Japanese traditions.

Related Content:

The First Monster (podcast)

The Science of Cute (podcast)

So Cute I Could Eat You Up (podcast)

Japanese Monsters References:

A modern kappa mascot -- pretty far removed from its murderous origins.
A modern kappa mascot -- pretty far removed from its murderous origins.
Photo by John S Lander/LightRocket via Getty Images
A modern oni mascot. He's certainly a sell-out, but he retains some of his monstrosity.
A modern oni mascot. He's certainly a sell-out, but he retains some of his monstrosity.
John S Lander / LightRocket via Getty Images
The tengu, however, remains much of its regal, dangerous air.
The tengu, however, remains much of its regal, dangerous air.
John S Lander / LightRocket via Getty Images

Topics in this Podcast: Halloween 2017, monsters, cute, culture, psychology, evolution