Hidden Village In ‘My Oni Girl’ Explained: Will The Village Survive Without The Snow Gods?

Where do the Oni live so that humans won’t harm them? Well, they live in a village that is hidden, and what do you call it? Well, the Hidden Village. Yes, that’s the place where Oni lives in Netflix’s latest anime fantasy film, My Oni Girl. Usually portrayed as demons or trolls in folklore and pop culture, this movie takes a different route and shows them as a peaceful community that has settled deep in the mountains.


Spoilers Ahead

How does the village stay hidden?

When Hiiragi asks Tsumugi where she comes from, she tells Hiiragi that her home is across the mountains in the Hidden Village. The Hidden Village has a cold climate all year long and is mostly covered by snow. The Oni have accustomed themselves to the weather. The village is hidden because of their good relationship with the local gods, who kept the village safe from the humans. They’re known as the Snow Gods, and they were thought to be legends until they started showing up recently. 


What are the Snow Gods?

The Oni believed that it’s the Snow Gods who are responsible for protecting their village and hiding it from the human world. On their journey to the Hie Shrine, Hiiragi and Tsumugi come across a cafeteria, where they stop after seeing a painting on a folding screen. Tsumugi is shocked when she sees that the Snow Gods are eating Oni in the painting. Throughout the movie, the Snow Gods were hunting Hiiragi and Tsumugi, and it makes sense that they are not actually benign godlike entities. 

How does Hiiragi end up in the Hidden Village?

When Tsumugi  doesn’t find her mother in the Hie Shrine, she gets upset at her father, Izuru, for not telling her the truth. She lashes out at Hiiragi too, who gets deeply affected by Tsumugi ’s cruel words and walks towards a dam while mini-oni keep coming out of him. Just when Hiiragi’s father discovers him after a long search, a Snow God gobbles Hiiragi up, and he disappears. Hiiragi always thought about other people’s feelings instead of his own, and he wouldn’t hurt a fly even if he needed to protect himself. His pent-up emotions come out as mini-oni, and that made him the easy target for the Snow God. He doesn’t die even after being eaten, and he sees visions of Tsumugi ‘s mother voluntarily leaving her family for the greater good. He sees little Tsumugi in the vision, and a golden beam of light radiates off of him. The Snow God wails in pain and crashes into a mountain right outside the Hidden Village. The guards see the Snow God from afar, and the creature soon crashes two more times before Hiiragi bursts out of it and the Snow God disappears. Hiiragi is still alive, and the Oni take him in. The people of the village are already walking on a tightrope, as the attacks from the Snow Gods keep increasing as the days pass. They’re always busy trying to guard their own, and these attacks have sucked out all the joy out of the community. 


Would the Hidden Village survive without the Snow Gods?

Chief Gozen laughs about how people used to think that the Snow Gods were the guardians of this village, and now they’re out eating the residents. Tsumugi comes back to the village, and she gets to know about the spirit mask of Oni Island. This mask has been used by the Oni for generations to summon the Snow Gods. Tsumugi’s mother was chosen to be the keeper of the mask, and there came a time when she regretted leaving her little daughter and husband behind. All the Oni were happy in the village, but Tsumugi’s mother was stuck with no one by her side. 

When Tsumugi sees her mother after entering the shrine on Oni Island, as they embrace each other, the mask disappears into the snow. Tsumugi sees her mother disappearing too, and she gets stuck under the snow in an avalanche. Hiiragi saves Tsumugi, and he finally lets go of his suppressed feelings and confesses his love to Tsumugi. As soon as he is free of this burden of his own feelings and emotions, he starts to levitate, and Tsumugi holds on to him. Hiiragi’s horn disappears, and he turns into a human again. 


By the end of the movie, the Snow Gods disappear just like the mask did. Tsumugi’s mother comes back to her and Izuru. Mini-oni radiate from throughout the village, and Hiiragi bids farewell to the girl he loves. The village didn’t need a keeper or a peacemaker to keep them safe; all they needed was love and a space to let out their buried emotions. Tsumugi and Hiiragi liberated the whole village with the innocent bond between them, and the village is still safe without anybody sacrificing their lives. 

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Aniket Mukherjee
Aniket Mukherjee
Aniket is a literature student pursuing his master's degree while trying to comprehend Joyce and Pound. When his head is not shoved in books, he finds solace in cinema and his heart beats for poetry, football, and Adam Sandler in times.

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