This is where it came from. Story behind this creepy photo. EYES bulge out of their sockets, a distorted smile stretches out over a gaunt, pale face and underneath black hair is a grotesque mixture of human and animal parts. The horrifying character is known as Momo and is a part of a disturbing viral challenge where kids are dared to message the character on WhatsApp.
TOKYO (10 a.m.)
Follow Vox online:
Japanese artist Keisuke Aiso said the statue had disintegrated naturally, so he disposed of it. The Momo Challenge, an alleged social media-based challenge featuring a bird-like wraith encouraging children to harm themselves, has sparked an internet-based moral panic. Sheriff departments have issued Facebook posts warning parents about it. Schools have sent emails to students about it. Hell, even Kim Kardashian West posted on Instagram about it. As Rolling Stone reported last week, the Momo Challenge is just the latest of a string of creepypasta-inspired internet urban legends that have gained traction due to parental fears about technology, from Slender Man to the more recent Blue Whale Challenge.
The Japanese sculptor, who wasn't involved in the bizarre Momo Challenge rumor, has destroyed the artwork. The supposed "Momo Challenge" made headlines recently, with representatives of YouTube saying the company has seen no recent evidence of videos promoting harmful and dangerous challenges on its site. But when stories about the alleged challenge made headlines, they were almost always accompanied by an unnerving image of a dark-haired creature with enormous eyes and a huge mouth. Now the artist who created that sculpture says he's destroyed the creation. The original sculpture, called Mother Bird, shows a human-style head with long dark hair spread sparsely over the creature's forehead, enormous round eyes, an oversized mouth and a flattened nose. The naked creature has the feet of a bird and not much of a torso.