01 Feb Saki Sanobashi: The ‘Lost’ Anime
nime is extremely popular the world-over. Many of us enjoy watching things like shonen (action) and the like. However, I tend to like older anime, like Akira and Perfect Blue. Older anime didn’t shy away from things like violence, sex, and gore; a far cry from the cartoons here in the west.
One night, I had my friends over. We had this tradition that every month, we’d get together and binge watch anime for the entire night. As we brainstormed which anime to binge, one of my friends suggested something very obscure: Saki Sanobashi.
All of us were puzzled. “What is so obscure about it?” I asked.
“Well, for starters: it can only be found on the deep web, on a hentai gore site. This is according to my brother, who gave me instructions on how to get there, which I have written down. My brother is an avid explorer of the deep web. And secondly, the story behind it is much scarier than the anime itself. I’ll save that story for when we finish watching it, it lasts around 30 minutes.”
“Alright, I guess!” I responded. My other friends were enthusiastic about it as well.
After some time setting up the PC and what not, my friend proceeded to search for the video based on the instructions. He found it within 20 minutes of intense searching and fierce scrolling. There it was: “Saki Sanobashi”. My friend explained it was animated around the 80s and that it was VERY cheaply made. We all thought nothing of it, really. But boy, were we wrong.
First 15 minutes:
The anime opened up with 9 girls stuck in a large bathroom without doors, windows, or mirrors; only one faucet was drawn. These girls were all animated in a similar fashion, with only the hair being distinguished. Bear in mind, absolutely no effort was put in to this. All of the movement came from their mouths and the shots were all the same, one was of them sitting together in a group and the rest were similar individual shots with only the hair being changed. What’s more? It had no audio, only subtitles in Japanese which were translated to English.
It is not known how they got there in the first place but one could piece together theories based on their life stories. As an example, one of the girls (who had a hime blonde haircut) was the daughter of a Jakuza member while the other (Same face but with black hair and no bangs) was of a well-established politician. Think what you want of the information, but I can care less. That is the least important information.
The mood of the anime starts out very positive. These girls, despite their circumstances, have hope that they’ll find a way out. One was religious, she cited how her belief in god gave her promise of a happy ending. The two others with powerful parents believed they’d find them just in time.
“Everything happens for a reason in life.” one said.
At this point, I thought it was pretty odd they’d act so calmly considering their situation. But, my friend assured me to go on with it.
The girls told philosophical stories to each other. The screen faded to black.
Last 15 minutes:
A red text appeared in Japanese, translated to English it said: “Five days later.”
At this point, the girls looked as if they were starving. Their eyes were as lifeless as their body. As it turns out, none of them had eaten for five days. The blonde girl with the hime cut even mentioned that she couldn’t go to sleep out of hunger and pure fear. After a silent montage of each of the girls, the screen cut to the blonde girl screaming and yelling, the only audio throughout the whole video. My god, it sounded so authentic. The same girl proceeded to smash her head unto the wall, I lost count of how many times she did. What shocked me the most was that, none of the other girls bothered to help her. My god, the drawings were so precise despite how cheaply it was made. Only a madman could have made this.
Suddenly, the montage started yet again. This time, it cut to one of the girls scratching her neck intensely letting out as much blood as she could; a few other girls followed. The girl with black hair asked one of the other girls to drown her in the sink, because she simply couldn’t do it herself. I witnessed her being held down by her friend as she drowned. The anime ended with a shot of the girls lying down on the bathroom floor, all of them dead. The screen then faded to black.
“What the hell man!” shouted one of my friends. We were all shocked, but we kept our composure. Honestly, I was pretty desensitized to these stuff. However, I wasn’t prepared for what my friend explained afterward…
The truth was, the anime was written and mostly drawn by a serial killer who had lurked in the shadows of Japan beginning in the 80’s. The anime was supposedly created before he drugged and trapped those innocent girls in the bathroom, but it is said that the audio of the blonde girl screaming was from one of his previous victims. It is estimated he took around six years (starting in the late 70’s) to complete the animation by himself, which would explain the very cheap quality of it. He was never found, the only thing found was the infamous bathroom alongside the bodies and the tape containing the anime. For a long time, the anime was stored away only to be re-discovered in 2018 after a leak. It is theorized the police preserved the tape digitally for further study. Due to censorship, you couldn’t find it on the regular web.
Anyway, the only reason I wrote this was to bring attention to the case in hopes they’ll eventually catch whoever did this and bring justice to the innocent girls murdered.