Ju On Characters — Yasuo Odajima’s Unexpected Story
Yasuo Odajima’s Character (Paranormal Researcher)
Who is the Yasuo Odajima character in Ju On: Origins?
In Ju On: Origins, the character of Yasuo Odajima plays a central role throughout the entire first season. At first, we think he’s just an observer. Maybe he’s even a horror junkie or some other kind of weirdo. We don’t really think about him too much. But as the series goes on, Yasuo Odajima is kind of like the main character, in a way.
Or at least, the main protagonist. And it’s nice to have a reliable pillar of a character to follow throughout the Ju On series.
Yasuo Odajima: Occupation
Let’s start at the beginning: Yasuo Odajima is a paranormal researcher.
What’s more, Mr. Odajima is writing a book about PARANORMAL ACTIVITY. Throughout the Grudge episodes, he conducts recorded interviews, performs library research, and investigates the haunted scene more than once.
But why? What is his purpose, really? What is he trying to achieve?
Haruka: Why are you gathering scary stories?
Yasuo: Oh, I’m going to write a book.
Haruka: That’s not what I mean. For what purpose?
Yasuo: Good questionJu-On: Origins, Episode 1
Check out that dialogue! It gives hints about who Yasuo Odajima is. Unfortunately, we don’t get an answer right away. Fortunately, we do get an answer later on down the line (in season 1).
WARNING: MINOR Ju On SPOILERS — Yasuo Odajima’s Backstory
Yasuo Odajima used to live in the haunted house, too! Unfortunately, season 1 doesn’t tell us why he hasn’t died. Horrible tragedies have befallen every person who has entered the house (come to think of it, I suppose that rule also excludes the police chief and the real estate agent!)
Why did Yasuo Odajima not fall victim to horrible tragedy? What about the police chief and real estate agent?
We don’t have an answer yet. COME SEASON 2, the writing team is going to have some SERIOUS explaining to do.
Yoshiyoshi Arakawa: Actor (beyond Ju On)
Yasuo Odajima is played by Yoshiyoshi Arakawa (荒川 良々), whose real name, however, is not Yoshiyoshi, but Yoshitomo (良友). Interestingly, he is a stage actor, and has also been known by the stage name, Jozu Arakawa (荒川 上手). The characters ” 上手 ,” or “Jozu,” literally translate to “skilled” or “talented,” and is an interesting nickname in its own right. Mr. Arakawa apparently changed his name to Yoshiyoshi after people kept misreading his name (source: Wikipedia).
Whatever his first name is, Mr. Arakawa once played a character in 2008 that looks exactly the same as the the guy he plays in Ju-On: Origins. I’m telling you, from his haircut to his interest in giving people the willies, Mr. Arakawa was definitely typecast.
Below, you can check out the trailer for Fine, Totally Fine (全然大丈夫, comedy, 2008). It’s amusing to notice the differences between Yasuo Odajima (Arakawa’s character from The Grudge: Origins, 2020) and Teruo Toyama (Arakawa’s character from Fine, Totally Fine):