Days had passed and I didn\’t blog anything for several days. I have a perfect excuse anyway. :) Guess what, I spent 4 days watching Maison Ikkoku, an anime originally created by Rumiko Takahashi. I\’m so absorbed with it that I temporarily shut myself from the outside world in order to enjoy this series to the fullest. (It\’s really great to have a very long vacation isn\’t it?) It has 96 episodes, about 26 minutes each. That\’s about 41 hours of continuous playback filled with bitter sweet romantic comedy. It\’s an epitome of romantic-comedy genre in anime. Seriously, this is an anime that I wanted to watch as early as 2002 but I didn\’t have any resource to get it. Even when I was studying in Singapore, I was not able to find this vintage anime. After all I\’m only a year older than this series. It was produced in 1986 and was concluded in 1988.
I\’m not going to discuss what Maison Ikkoku is all about. Even if you don\’t watch anime, consider Maison Ikkoku as a drama and you\’ll probably like it too. I can\’t even call myself a die-hard fan of anime. I just love watching something Japanese and learn more about Japanese culture. Some background: I\’ve been interested in Japanese culture since my father went in Japan for 6 months training when I was still 6 years old. Since then, I really wanted to read and write Japanese since most of my toys had Japanese symbols and writings on them.
So after a long intro, let\’s get into business. I really want to express how this series endeared to me so much. I really enjoyed watching it. I\’ve watched about 60-70 anime (I didn\’t finish all) but Maison Ikkoku is the most I\’ve enjoyed among them. First of all, Maison Ikkoku means \”The House of One-Moment\” where \”Maison\” (めぞん) is a French word meaning house and Ikkoku (一刻) which means one moment, one minute or an instant. It\’s a shabby apartment where the romance of Yusaku Godai and Kyoko Otonashi developed. I must emphasize: I\’m not really into anime romance or anything along that line. Actually I prefer action and science fiction like Ghost in the Shell or Gundam but Maison Ikkoku is one of those very few anime that captures true human emotions. It\’s a very moving anime, IMHO.
I\’ll quote one of the most memorable lines in Maison Ikkoku by Kyoko Otonashi: Please, even if it\’s just one day, live longer than me… Because… I don\’t think I could live alone again…. Kyoko is just a fictitious lead female character of Maison Ikkoku yet Rumiko Takahashi had developed her emotional depth that viewers can relate very well. There\’s even a full-pledged website dedicated to Kyoko — Kyoko.org. Too bad she\’s just a two dimensional character.
Rumiko Takahashi is also well-known for her other works like Ranma 1/2 and Inuyasha.