On the left, two boys dressed as AKB48 girl band members. On the right: insect girls.

Please excuse the wretched low-res phonesnap, but I couldn’t resist taking a few pictures at a typical Halloween bar party in Shibuya. Japanese costume favorites were well represented: boys dressed as girls, girls dressed as animals, men dressed as geisha, and Mario & Luigi. There were a few excellent outliers, though. One guy wore regular street clothes with his inch-long hot pink fake eyelashes. The best one, though, was a guy in quasi-medical scrubs who made the rounds with a beaker of tequila and a syringe, ordering people to open their mouths for their “shot.”

The guy on the left just looked like he was wearing street clothes and a green wig until he showed all. The guy on the right has a “tai-yaki” red bean cake for a head.

A fine example of the he-geisha.

Jonelle Patrick is the author of the Only In Tokyo mystery series, now out for the first time in paperback

More Nightshade book goodness here, in case you think you might want to, you know, read it or something

A young woman is found dead in an abandoned car, with a pair of strangers old enough to be her parents. Their suicide note apologizes for a disaster that hasn’t yet happened. And someone is stalking the…read more

…or watch the book trailer (0:52)