Maison Ikkoku (Editor's Choice Edition) Vol. #01 -

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Mania Grade: A

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  • Art Rating: B
  • Packaging Rating: A
  • Text/Translatin Rating: A
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Released By: Viz Media
  • MSRP: 9.95
  • Pages: 224
  • ISBN: 1-59116-054-5
  • Size: Tall B5
  • Orientation: Right to Left

Maison Ikkoku (Editor's Choice Edition) Vol. #01

By Megan Lavey     April 28, 2004
Release Date: September 01, 2003

Maison Ikkoku (Editor's Choice Edition) Vol.#01
© Viz Media

Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Rumiko Takahashi
Translated by:Gerard Jones and Matt Thorn
Adapted by:

What They Say
From the beloved creator of InuYasha and Ranma 1/2, the romantic (sort of) comedy Maison Ikkoku, in a new edition in its original episodic order! Travel into Japan?s nuttiest apartment house and meet its volatile inhabitants: Kyoko, the beautiful and mysterious new apartment manager; Yusaku, the exam-addled college student; Mrs. Ichinose, the drunken gossip; Kentaro, her bratty son; Akemi, the boozy bar hostess; and the mooching and peeping Mr. Yotsuya. Funny, touching and a tad off-kilter, Maison Ikkoku is the great Rumiko Takahashi at her very best.

The Review
Packaging: This is a very pretty and attractive cover, combining the English logo for the series with the Japanese artwork from when the series was released as a 10-volume wideban set in Japan a few years ago. Considering that Viz already announced this would be re-released as the original 15-volume release, it makes you wonder what they?ll use for the other five volumes when these run out. Still, it makes of an attractive cover with a picture of Kyoko in her Piyo Piyo apron sweeping out in front of Maison Ikkoku. The border is in various shades of pink, along with the logo. On the back is a zoomed in version of the front cover and the jacket blurb.

Now it?s time for Megsie-chan?s logo check!

Unlike when Viz redid the Inuyasha manga (and changed its logo), it keeps the same logo with Maison Ikkoku with the ?I? in Maison resembling a house and a clock for the ?O.? There is also a picture of Mr. Soichiro over the ?N? and the ?U.? I don?t remember if that was in the original or not. I like this logo because it does reflect the tanzy nature of this apartment complex.

Artwork: This is early Takahashi, and the art style is very similar to ?Urusai Yatsura? rather than to later works such as Ranma 1/2 and InuYasha. Really, the only character that looks completely different from his/her anime counterpart is Kyoko. She looks like a bit like Lum to me at this part of the series. As Takahashi grows with this piece though, Kyoko comes into her own and looks like the woman pictured on the front cover. The other characters look different as well, including Godai, but it wasn?t quite as much of a shock for me. As the book progressed though, you can see the series start to come into its own.

Orientation/SFX: Flipped and translated.

Text: No noticeable problems for me. It was a good, clean read. SFX is translated, but the pages are unflipped.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Yusaku Godai has had it. He is sick of his neighbors interference, which has led to him failing a midterm yet again, after already failing his college entrance exams. But when he goes to announce he?s leaving Maison Ikkoku, the beautiful new manager, Kyoko Otonashi, arrives. He changes his mind quickly. But things sort of get off onto the wrong foot when Akemi brings Kyoko into Godai?s room and shows her the peephole that was being used to spy into her room. But it?s not Godai?s fault (though he did peep into Akemi?s room at least once?). Mr. Yotsuya had been breaking through the other wall and taking the chance to spy on Akemi. But as Kyoko repairs the wall, the rest of the tenants storm in and proceed to have a party in Godai?s room.

And you wonder why Yusaku never gets any studying done?

Godai falls instantly in love with Kyoko, but over the course of the book, discovers he has some real obstacles to face. One is his own ronin status, but he manages to surpass that fairly quickly. A second is Kyoko?s tennis instructor, Mitaka, who already shows a maturity that Godai has yet to grow into. And the third ? and possibly biggest hurdle ? is Godai discovering that Kyoko is a widow?

Yes, I can say this definitely made a bigger impact on me now than it did a decade ago. Having gone through college, I can sympathize with Godai?s feelings and what it?s like living in a rowdy apartment house (or dorm in my case.) The nice thing about Maison Ikkoku is that it isn?t one of those series you feel you have to sit and devour everything in one gulp. I actually wound up reading this manga over the course of an evening instead in just one sitting. It was easy to put down when I had to do other things and just as easy to pick back up when I had time. It?s one of those books I wouldn?t mind carrying with me when I wait for an interview or had to do something else because it?s a series geared at adults that has common adult problems.

What will be interesting to see is how Godai?s crush on Kyoko develops. While a rival might not be so big to him, Kyoko?s other problem ? and reason for coming to Maison Ikkoku in the first place ? is. I get the sense that this series will show how he develops and emerges from the ronin stereotype his housemates have thrown him into.


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