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Maison Ikkoku, Vol. 1: Welcome To Maison Ikkoku [Paperback]

Rumiko Takahashi
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)

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Poor Yusaku Godai. He's a struggling college student and resident of the dilapidated apartment building Maison Ikkoku. What's more, he's madly in love with the new manager of Maison Ikkoku, the lovely Kyoko Otonashi, who isn't all that unattracted to Godai. It's just that she's trying to deal with the recent death of her husband. This romantic tension sets the stage for all subsequent volumes of Rumiko Takahashi's charming and funny comic book soap opera and is propelled forward by both Godai's and Kyoko's inability to express their honest feelings to one another. In this first volume, readers are introduced to most of the major characters of this series, including Coach Mitaka (Kyoko's would-be boyfriend), Kozue (Godai's would-be girlfriend), and all the crazy, drunken folk who reside in Maison Ikkoku. This is the story of a young man learning to love for the first time, a young widow learning to love again, and the drunks who interfere with them. --Jim Pascoe

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars great July 25 2003
By A Customer
Maison Ikkoku by Rumiko Takahashi is one of the greatest series ever made.
Chapter Summary:
Yusaku Godai is a depressed, flunking college student, who is constantly bothered by fellow tenants in the apartment building he lives in, Maison Ikkoku. As he's about to leave out of frustration, he comes face to face with the new manager of Maison Ikkoku, Kyoko Otonashi, who he immediately falls in love with.
First chapter. Establishes all of the tenants (besides Mr. Ichinose in graphic novel 6, and Nozomu Nikaido in number 9).
Yusaku realizes Kyoko has a boyfriend named Soichiro, when she mutters it in her sleep. He then finds out her dog is named Mr. Soichiro.
Learn Kyoko's dog's name.
Godai accompanies Kyoko's family to the anniversary of someone's death. That someone: Kyoko's dead husband, Soichiro!
Yes, we find out Kyoko's deep, dark secret.
Yusaku gets a job tutoring Kyoko's niece, Ikuko. And he learns Ikuko isn't the model student.
I believe this has the first of anyone's visions of Soichiro.
Godai gets drunk one night and shouts to the whole neighborhood that he's in love with Kyoko.
Yes, Godai admits his love, however, thinking he begged Kyoko to look at him naked when he was drunk, he tells her it was a joke. So Kyoko gets mad at him for lying.
Kyoko and Mrs. Ichinose start taking tennis lessons under the local housewives tennis coach, Shun Mitaka.
First appearance of Shun Mitaka, the handsome tennis coach. And yes, he falls in love with Kyoko too, however he's much more mature than Godai.
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5.0 out of 5 stars You really just can't buy one of these. July 7 2003
If you've ever read the interviews of the author on her rare trips to the states, there are two things that stand out. One, she had trouble understanding why Americans would like something like Maison Ikkoku, based so much on the typical Japanese life style. Two, she (Rumiko Takahashi) created this to be a comedy, that about the life of a bunch of weird characters in a rooming house. Her normal actions (based on what she did with LUM: Urusei Yatsura) would be to continually introduce dozens of new characters and probably tenants to build the story around. This didn't happen, as the story developed an unexpected focal point, an unusual romance between two of the original characters.
As for the first observation, while it is true that the culture depicted here is Japanese, and some things may be confusing to an American audience, a part of that originality is what makes it interesting. Romance and comedy are universal concepts to nearly all cultures. We may eat differently, may have a different educational system, and do many other things in a different manner, but our actions and reactions are basically the same.
The second observation is what makes Takahshi such a great author. It would have been easy to ignore fan reactions, and just make another episodic, sitcom. She instead must have listened, and presented her audience with an epic romance, comedic, thriller, that encompasses possibly the most complete story ever presented in serialized manga. There are fourteen volumes of the Viz compilations of this work.
One more important point is worth considering. I'd advise buying the volumes soon as possible; Viz is going to the smaller size on almost all their series. Since these are already shrunken down art frames from the original manga. Shrinking them more is just wrong, but Viz has determined they can't sell most graphic novels at the higher price mark, and they are heavily discounted. I've gotten some of the new size, and they just are not as good.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Superb Classic Masterpiece of Romance & Comedy June 4 2001
"Maison Ikkoku" has been called a heartwarming romantic comedy, a brilliant soap opera, an emotional roller coaster, funny, thoughtful and moving, and screwball romantic comedy at its finest. It is all this and much more.
Covering 14 volumes, "Maison Ikkoku" is a masterpiece of international literature, showing off Japanese culture and societal conventions, by telling the comic yet romantic story of a young man in love for the first time, a young woman who is learning to love again after becoming a widow, their romantic rivals, and, especially, their interfering neighbors. Although set in Japan, the story is one of universal appeal.
Rumiko Takashi has had great success writing on all manner of outrageous subjects, ranging from the comically interfering aliens of "Lum*Urusei Yatsura", to the gender-bending martial arts hi-jinks of "Ranma 1/2."
But in "Maison Ikkoku", the focus is on real life. Like real life, there is comedy, sadness and romance. Ms. Takahashi blends these elements quite well, although the comic elements are more strongly in the forefront in Volume 1.
Maison Ikkoku is a run down boarding house in Tokyo. Student Yusaku Godai, Resident of Room 5, has had enough of the teasing he gets from his neighbors, and is threatening to move out, for the 3rd time that month.
His neighbors are quite a handful: There's Mrs. Ichinose, a hard drinking, hard partying, hard gossiping mother who lives downstairs in Room 1 with her young son Kentaro. Akemi Roppongi lives next to Godai in Room 6, works nights as a bar hostess at local hangout ChaChaMaru, and goes about wearing a see-through nightie.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars The beginning of a wonderful journey of love
This is the beginning of the Maison Ikkoku saga, an absolutely wonderful romance story by Rumiko Takahasi. Read more
Published on June 10 2002 by Barman Santosa
5.0 out of 5 stars The beginning of a wonderful journey of love
This is the beginning of the Maison Ikkoku saga, an absolutely wonderful romance story by Rumiko Takahasi. Read more
Published on June 10 2002 by Barman Santosa
5.0 out of 5 stars How does Takahashi do it?!
Maison ikkou is [in my oppinion] in rivalry with ranma 1/2 for the best series ever. It's so realistic to how people act, how things look and I think you get more envolved in... Read more
Published on May 5 2002 by "russianman123"
5.0 out of 5 stars Maison Ikkoku saved my marriage!
Okay, not really!, but I love this series. Starting with this volume, you get to meet the wacky inhabitants of Maison Ikkoku, a shabby boarding house in Japan. Read more
Published on April 29 2002 by Jennifer Dwyer
5.0 out of 5 stars Best yet
I love Maison Ikkoku, though many people may not agree it's Rumiko Takaheshi at her finest. It's something that is actually from a realistic point of view. Read more
Published on Dec 1 2001 by "moonlady_3000"
5.0 out of 5 stars wonderful, wonderful, wonderful.
Ah. . . classic manga, and that is what you are going to get in this series which was originally serialized back in the year 1980, but what a series it is!! Read more
Published on Nov. 9 2001 by Daitokuji31
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent series... get all 14 volumes!
'Maison Ikkoki' is a romantic comedy that focuses on Godai, a young man who falls in love with the manager of his apartment building. Read more
Published on May 22 2001 by Steve Miller
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing!!!!
This is an amazing manga written by the best (not to mention most hilarious) artist I have ever read, Rumiko Takahashi. Read more
Published on April 23 2001 by "tiamat360"
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious, Sweet Romantic Comedy
Maison Ikkoku is not your average boarding house. Oh, on the surface it is, but the tenants are the most insane people you'll ever meet. There's Mr. Read more
Published on Feb. 22 2001 by Caitlin Moore
5.0 out of 5 stars Addictive.
This was the first manga I ever read, and I was hooked. Rumiko Takahashi's stuff is not for the impatient, however. Read more
Published on Feb. 21 2001 by Karen K. Hart
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