Pontianak: The Vampiric Ghost of Southeast Asia

The pontianak, or kuntilanak, has long been a staple of Malay horror. In addition to serving as an allegory for the tension between traditional and modern cultural and spiritual practices, these monsters gave name to a real city. In this episode, you’ll learn how Islamic trade routes, animism, and the role of women in Southeast Asia contribute to stories of this notorious ghost.

More Episodes

Kasagonagá: The Cute, Kind Monster We All Need Right Now

A sky deity falling from the sky sounds bad, right? Not if it’s the Kasogonagá!

Nuckelavee: Scotland’s Skinless Evil Monstrosity

This horse-like horror emerges from the sea bringing death and disease.

How Gargoyles Became Monsters

Do you know where they originated from?

Other Shows You May Enjoy