In Teen Wolf Season 2, a new creature called a Kanima appears, which is a part of the major plot line. My question is, is this Kanima creature all made up for the Teen wolf series, or is it inspired by any existing fictional work or historical story?

  • All searches for Kamina direct me back to Teen Wolf, so I suspect that the concept was indeed made up just for the show. Jun 27 '13 at 18:07
  • There is a South American novel called "Canaima", by Gallegos. The title refers to a mythical beast of the jungle.
    – user6407
    Oct 12 '13 at 22:43
  • powerlisting.wikia.com/wiki/Kanima_Physiology i hope this can sort of help it gives a description of a part of the myth but i could not find anything history wise
    – user7557
    Jan 10 '14 at 23:31

According to this interview with Teen Wolf creator Jeff Davis, the Kanima is, at least loosely, based on South American mythology. He says the original Kanima was a "were-jaguar" (that is, half-man, half-jaguar; named in analogy with "werewolf"). The Wikipedia article on the were-jaguar suggests that it may have been inspired by a venomous toad thought to resemble a jaguar. However, the Teen Wolf version is more like a reptile. Davis says

I ... saw CONAN THE BARBARIAN. And one indelible image that was left in my mind was the scene where James Earl Jones starts to transform into a gigantic snake. That look stuck with me and that’s what we went for

So the name may come from South American mythology, but the appearance has a more modern origin.


I grew up hearing the stories of the Canaima as told by my Native American grandmother and other people when I visited the village in Guyana South America.

  • Can you elaborate about the story and creature? Dec 12 '13 at 6:08
  • @AnkitSharma, According to Wiki, the Orinoco jungle is the main character and at the same time the reason behind all of the other characters' actions. Canaima represents a bitter struggle against caudillism. A film adaptation of the novel was made in 1945. The jungle basically represents the ideology of the author. Dec 12 '13 at 10:43

In the belief system of the Carib tribes, Kanaima is an evil spirit that possesses people and causes them to turn into deadly animals and/or go into a murderous rage. Assassins, or Carib people seeking revenge for a slain relative, sometimes invited the Kanaima spirit into themselves by taking certain drugs or conducting certain magic rituals

  • 2
    Can you provide a reference to back up your answer?
    – sanpaco
    Apr 14 '16 at 22:27

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