- Anvilicious: The Zashiki-Warashi arc may not have been intended to be an anti-abortion Author Tract, but it sure is effective! Although the conflict arose from the fact that the abortions were done violently and without the mothers' consent, the anime does present the Mononoke as sentient fetuses wanting to be born. It's not clear whether the Mononoke arose from the aborted babies or the mothers, but keep in mind that it was based on Feudal folktales, which tend to look down on abortion or anything other than heteronormative family units.
- Awesome Art: Colourful + surreal + extremely stylized = beautiful
- Crack Pairing: The Medicine Man x his own mononoke-slaying alter-ego has an entire Live Journal community devoted to it. Crack or Squick, take your pick!
- Nightmare Fuel: A good part of the series if you're not careful.
- Tear Jerker: Loads. Every single arc has at least one if not more. Finding out the zashiki-warashi just wanted a mother to love it, Oyo's confession and subsequent self-sacrifice, Cho's mental breakdown.
- This Is Your Premise on Drugs: Mushishi on crack. Lots of it. And then a few dozen tabs of acid.
- True Art Is Incomprehensible: Even if you really pay attention to what is going on, with all the cases of Unreliable Narrator and Tomato in the Mirror, and the scenery that, as often as not, is not what is actually there but is only shown for artistic or symbolic purposes; and all of the instances where things that characters think happened did not actually happen, and an ambiguous amount of time actually passed outside of the mononoke's influence, it is at least a particularly heavy Mind Screw.