Rin-ne 9

September 24, 2012

Rumiko Takahashi – Viz – 2012 – 9+ volumes

You know, I’m just going to keep reading this series, but it’s still mostly silly short stories that seem to do little to build character or story. It’s a lot like Ranma 1/2 in that way, but Ranma 1/2 had more memorable stories and funnier characters. Perhaps Ranma and Akane weren’t any more fleshed out than Rin-ne and Sakura Mamiya, but they did have more distinctive personalities.

Most of the stories are shorter this time around, which I like better. The longer ones tend to drag out these ideas a little too long, and I think they’re meant to develop the characters… but again, Sakura Mamiya and Rin-ne aren’t all that interesting. The short stories are cute, though. We see the ghost of a lonely college exam student that has a slight twist, an anthropomorphic wig, the ghost of a spurned lover, the ghost of a little girl that died before she could give special lessons to a young boy, a re-appearance of Rin-ne’s dad possessed and putting in an honest day’s work, and a slightly longer story at the end featuring Rin-ne’s shinigami suitor.

The little shinigami gadgets were the star this time around. They’re still really cheap, and they always seem to do interesting things. A piece of paper gives a scowling face to an angry, discarded wig. There’s a balloon that one student inflates in order to manifest his younger self to communicate with a ghost. Paper tubes that send spirit snakes back to the shinigami world. Little things like that make the stories a bit more charming and quirky.

I never got tired of it, but while typing this out, I noticed that all the short stories save one or two were about vengeful spirits. Those ones are the best, though, since the ghosts are always a bit funny and not very serious. The others tend to be about the less interesting regular characters, and it’s sad when I like the stories not involving them the best.

I like it, and I’ll continue reading it, but it’s mostly out of a long-ingrained Takahashi habit at this point. I do like her style of storytelling, but this is a bad place to start reading her. Ranma 1/2 is the better story if you’re into this kind of supernatural silliness, and Inu-Yasha is probably the better starting place since it’s more plot-driven. Though really, my heart will always belong to the horror series Mermaid Saga.

This was a review copy provided by Viz.

One Response to “Rin-ne 9”

  1. Pirkaf Says:

    I’m really afraid to start reading this. But Mermaid saga is rally good, so is Maison Ikkoku. Ranma and Inuyasha are no-no for me.

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