Maison Ikkoku (Editor's Choice Edition) Vol. #06 -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: A-

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  • Art Rating: B+
  • Packaging Rating: A
  • Text/Translatin Rating: C
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Released By: Viz Media
  • MSRP: 9.95
  • Pages: 200
  • ISBN: 1-59116-422-2
  • Size: Tall B6
  • Orientation: Right to Left

Maison Ikkoku (Editor's Choice Edition) Vol. #06

By Megan Lavey     August 27, 2004
Release Date: July 01, 2004

Maison Ikkoku (Editor's Choice Edition) Vol.#06
© Viz Media

Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Rumiko Takahashi
Translated by:Yuji Oniki
Adapted by:

What They Say
Grandma Godai comes for an extended visit and manages to meddle in Yusaku's love life at every turn. Before she leaves, Grandma brokers a dream date for her wishy-washy grandson, but the night doesn't turn out exactly as she planned...

The Review
Once again, we get an absolutely gorgeous cover - and it's the first to feature Yusaku alongside Kyoko. It's also the first cover to not utilize one of the wideban covers, which is a good thing since there were only 10 wideban covers, and there will be 15 volumes of this series. Even though this is not a wideban cover, the image of Kyoko and Godai - a color piece of art taken from the "Well, Well, Well" chapter of this book - fits in perfectly with the wideban images used. A pastel pallette of pale blues round out the cover. My one complaint is that they stuck a "From the creator of Inuyasha" sticker on the book. It took forever for me to get off, and I still have some sticky residue. My advice, as was given on the forums, is to take the sticker off in the store or have the sales associate do it for you. That way, if it's damaged, you can get another book.

We've now fully settled into the art style that Takahashi utilizes for this series, and it focuses heavily on the characters and their actions and reactions to events. There are plenty of shots of Kyoko and the other girls in bikinis, especially in the final chapter, the book's "lost episode." The layout is clean and easy to follow, but the pages themselves have a lot of action going on. The reproduction is good on the original black and white pages, but the color pages come out a bit dark.

For the most part, Viz has retained a pretty faithful translation. From my impression, I thought that the original translation from when the books were first released in left to right format was used. But, there's definitely been some translation changes, as fans quickly pointed out for this volume. On page 101, when Yusaku is going through a mental list of items in Mitaka's apartment, he lists off a DVD player as one of the items. However, for a series that's been established as being in the 1980s (through calendars in previous volumes, etc.), there's no way Mitaka could own a DVD player. Most likely, Yusaku is referring to an VCR player or "video" as the original text has. But, because the technology is outdated does not give Viz the right to automatically update it. For a series set in the 80s, it is absurd to mention the characters having DVD players. It takes away from the overall charm of the piece and disrespects Takahashi's work and the time period that it's set in. I hope that Viz editors read this and correct the issue for future volumes and take steps to prevent it from happening again.

Ever, just ever so slightly, do we go forward in the ongoing relationship with Yusaku and Kyoko. But, the majority of this book is spent focusing on a catalyst thrown into the worlds - Godai's grandmother, Yukari. We get the standard run of competition between Godai and Mitaka, misunderstandings between Godai and Kyoko and the general mayhem that comes with living at Maison Ikkoku.

And while the book follows the same pattern set in earlier volumes, there are certain aspects of the story that I absolutely love and others that annoy me, but come to a satisfactory resolution.

One of the high parts of this book was the very first chapter, with Akemi's boss roping the Maison Ikkoku gang into playing on his team. The way everyone...bands together for the sake of free booze is hilarious, and the resolution to the game kept me laughing for awhile.

The other high part is the end of the latest Grandma Godai appearance. Grandma talks Kyoko into going on an all-expense paid date with Godai and the two are stalked by the other residents of Maison Ikkoku during the entire date. It really unnerves them, but also causes them to grow closer together as outwitting and outlasting their friends becomes a game. Yes, it is Survivor: Maison Ikkoku. Be sure to check out the "Lum" cameo in this chapter.

And speakings of being stranded on an island, the volume features a story that was published in a special summer issue of "Big Comic Spirits," the magazine that ran "Maison Ikkoku" during its initial run. Technically falling between the hickey and the Hokkaido chapters in this book, the story does not really fall in the continuity of the Maison Ikkoku manga. After a boat Mitaka buys crashes, the gang is stuck on a deserted island...but there's a twist, as we discover at the end. It's pretty amusing, but doesn't stand out anymore than the normal chapters of the manga - except for the very end when we discover just what Yotsuya has been up to all this time.

The annoying parts is when Kyoko's jealousy flares up and she refuses to believe Godai about his story concerning a hickey he accidentally received from his friend, Sakamoto. This drives him to go to Hokkaido, where he encounters a girl that reminds me somewhat of female Ranma, but will not shut up. I found myself flipping pretty fast through the Hokkaido chapter, but was happy with the resolution found to the hickey story, and the one involving Godai helping a young woman before that.

This volume did not keep me on the edge of my seat, like some of the earlier ones did, but I was amazed at how much time I devote to reading Maison Ikkoku. It is truly one of the series I look forward to getting, and the time spent with the tenants and their friends makes me miss my own college days and the close-knit community I had with my friends. However, I am ready for things to start moving a bit beyond the status quo it's maintained for the past couple of volumes. Still, any visit to Maison Ikkoku is one to enjoy.


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