Kyōkai no Rinne


Its almost finally here! As much as it dragged on, I really was sad for InuYasha to finally end, which is odd, because I also kind of wanted it to end.

But Rumiko Takahashi’s new manga is finally about to hit and Viz will actually be putting out a fully translated new chapter every week as they are released in Japan!

You can find them on the The Rumic World site starting April 22nd!

There has been some criticism that the main characters just look like InuYasha and Kagome with different hairstyles. But that’s just Takahashi’s style I guess.

It certainly isn’t going to put me off of this supernatural tale about a girl (Sakura Mamiya) who has the ability to see ghosts due to a childhood encounter… Kyaaaaaaah I’m so excited!


36 thoughts on “Kyōkai no Rinne

  1. Oh, shit! A series about a girl who gets involved with a supernatural? And a dude with sharp eyes? A relationship in which the girl abuses the boy?

    How new! How exciting!


    … I may have a *slight* bias against that bitch. I mean, Rumiko Takahashi.

    • Wow, maggeh.

      Um, you are sort of… judging the characters.
      Yes, you are being bias.

      I’ve read the series and the characters do look the same
      but Mamiya doesnt’ seem to be the type to abuse the male lead (which I wish she did, I miss the Inuyasha-Kagome relationship XD)

  2. @ maggeh You seriously almost made me spit out my drink I started laughing when I read your comment.

    Its a tired sort of plotline I’m sure. But one of the things I’ve always loved about her manga is her ability to make the character fun to read.

    InuYasha got abuse, but he was sure able to dish it out too. I like that she makes her female characters spunky. I just hope we don’t have as many upgrades in this one as InuYasha got…

    And OI YOU GET BACK ON AIM MISTER. 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 I smilie attack dare you!

  3. When I took my laptop for repairs, my AIM got uninstalled.

    Which is a problem, cause I forgot what my AIM password was.

    It’s a circular logic. The logic being that I’m lazy.

    No, wait, something’s wrong with that logic…


    Ah, yaoi pairings. Yaoi fangirls don’t know shit about true yaoi pairings.

    … I should make a post. A post detailing all acceptable yaoi pairings in the mangaverse.

  4. @ maggeh You totally should do that, I’m not sure I can read it though, I gouged my eyes out.

    Doesn’t it have that button where its like if you forget your password and then it emails it to you?

  5. The circular logic states that I’m too lazy to do that. Else I would have done it ages ago. XD

    Nah, it’s just that this laptop is fucked up. It’s deleting my shit. I lost my WinRAR, my Windows Notepad, my Warcraft III: Frozen Throne, my Windows Media Player… and one more thing that I forgot.

    I should be getting a new laptop sometime in the summer, though, so I’ll probably reinstall then.

  6. Coolness 🙂 At the very least you can’t yell at me for not having put a Naruto post up in three weeks.

    I’m getting to it, but its hard, its boring me right now.

  7. I’m optimistic too — enough so that I spent a good bit of Friday evening assembling some first thoughts to send in (as apparently either Takahashi-sensei herself wanted or Shônen Sunday requested for her).

    I tried to fool myself that I was just testing how my recently-downloaded OpenOffice word processor would work with the newly-set-up Japanese-character input mode. Yeah, right. . . .

    It wound up as four pages’ worth of contemplations about where this series might go from here.

    If anyone’s interested in seeing this amateur try to match imaginations with Takahashi-sensei, it’s here:


    (Actually, I almost wasn’t an amateur. In the 1980s, I tried to start a comic-book company with some friends. If I’d ever bought anything on credit, I might have been able to get a loan to float the printing of our three first issues . . . and I might still be a writer/editor today. Or, of course, Viz might have paid attention to my résumé in 1992, when I’d just come back from teaching English for two years at a senmon-gakkô — in Niigata! Instead, I wound up translating technical documents for an auto-parts company in Battle Creek for 5-1/2 years. . . .)

  8. @ Chen Li, Maggeh is usually very strong willed about his opinions XD

    @ John, Your musings make for a very interesting read. A thought struck me when I got to part about how we haven’t really met the family yet. How much do you wanna bet there isn’t a daddy in the picture… 😉

    Hopefully if I continue to post, you’ll continue to stop by with your thoughts. Given your knowledge of the language I’m sure there’s a lot you could tell us 🙂

    You tried to start up a comic book company? Wow 🙂 Hubby actually had a comic he submitted to various newspapers, but sadly there were no takers. Pity, I liked the strip…

    But you have to at least try right?

  9. I’ll stop hating the bitch when something actually happens in Inuyasha and the story finally ends its cycle of repetition.

    … Wait, what do you mean Inuyasha ended a long time ago?

    Oh, sorry, I thought it was still going on BECAUSE IT STILL FUCKING FEELS LIKE NOTHING HAPPENED. Guess reading Inuyasha is like not reading it – the next time you pick a chapter up, you’ll still BE EXACTLY AT THE SAME POINT YOU WERE FIVE YEARS AGO.

    Oh, and Sakura, you may not have to worry about Naruto posts… but I want those FMA posts up. 8D

  10. @ Sakura — 4/27/09 12:20am . . . thank you for your kind words. My Japanese has had ten years and a bit to get rusty since I was last using it intensively, but I’m willing to share what knowledge (or memory or information) I have.

    I really like Japanese — wordplay in it is fun, just about as fun as English. I mean “wordplay” literally . . . it’s fun to play with kanji and kana and make words. When I was first studying on my own, I decided that you could use kanji to both build and bootstrap your vocabulary. If you knew that te meant “hand” and kubi was “neck”, it made sense that tekubi = “the neck of the hand” . . . or “wrist”. And if you hadn’t caught on yet that foreign words would probably either be ignored or “imported” in katakana, you might still manage to discuss frijoles — by talking about sai-shô-tô . . . or futa-yaki-mame.

    (On a related note — trust me, it is — does anybody here know, or can you guess, why all Japanese may be fans of The Hollies?)

    * * * * * * *

    I must admit, I hadn’t given a lot of thought to who else specifically will be at that dinner table with Sakura-chan. (To be honest, I was kind of hoping we’d find out soon from the source.) But, since we’re apparently in another “how late can you go?” publication-day waiting game with Viz, I have some time to do it now.

    Let’s see. Good tonkatsu isn’t cheap — and the dining room there seemed fairly well-appointed . . . so there’s probably someone earning decent money in the family. Good thing, too, if Rinne-kun is going to be as focused on money as in the first episode — or at least as demanding of it. And in the normal way of things, both he and Sakura-chan are too young to have jobs. If he’s not making enough on spirit-guiding to pay his own way, she’d better have a good allowance . . . even if the fares he asks her to pay for him seem old-fashioned and low.

    Still, you’re right — that bread[ed-cutlet-]winner need not be Papa. I’d guess about a 50-50 chance that it is. We’ve only heard about females in Sakura-chan‘s family so far; perhaps the mystical bent of the women tends to push men away from the household. But sometimes all that takes in Japan is an office job (as shown in the case of Mr. Ichinose in MI, for example).

    If Sakura-chan doesn’t have a father around, she may still have a brother or two. A younger brother would fit the older traditional “ichi-hime ni-tarô” pattern. (And it might be one way to make her background aside from the source of her spiritual gift, whatever that is, as normal as possible. It could then contrast with Rinne-kun‘s. He may not have any family — at least not in this spiritual vicinity. . . .)

    Sakura-chan does seem pretty level-headed and self-reliant. This could be an indication that she’s a younger sibling in a relatively large family — but it could also indicate that she doesn’t always have both parents around.

    If Mama is the head of the household, and successful at it, she may be too busy to take care of Sakura-chan all the time. She mght also be too busy to notice — or too modern to be comfortable with even perceiving — Sakura-chan‘s spiritual side. Or her own, if she has one (or the potential for it). Or oba-chan‘s, whoever she turns out to have been — or to be.

    Of course, it’s not impossible that o-bâ-chan (the grandma Little Pink-Flower Riding Hood was visiting when she got lost in the woods . . . :] . . .) has moved down from the mountains to be with her family. And she could be from either side of the family, too. So, for that matter, could oba-chan.

    In fact, if she is still here, oba-chan herself might turn out to be the head of this household. Even if not, I suppose there’s a slim chance that the head of household is an older brother or sister. Sakura-chan just entered high school — so, with the 6-3-3 system, that’s equivalent to 10th grade here . . . which means she’s probably 15. In that case, 30 would be pushing it for an older sibling; 20-25 would be more likely. But what job would a 20- to 25-year-old have that would have her/him home to cook dinner and still pay enough to keep a growing teen-age girl in clothes, allowance, ghostly Ferris-wheel fares, and so on?

    Gee . . . could oba-chan / o-nê-chan be a model or a pop star or some such?

    Or is that just aidoru speculation? . . . :] . . . (Groans accepted . . . but sometimes the funniest jokes are the ones that turn out to be true.)

    * * * * * * *

    Well, that’s an hour and a bit more of, um, idle speculation . . . can that hold us until we see where Takahashi-sensei starts taking us next? (And how fine the mess is that you’ve gotten me into this time? . . .)

  11. Oh, yes — @ Sakura — 4/27/09 12:20am . . . I forgot to answer one of your questions. And, since there’s a break in the action of preparing dinner (and apparently at Viz, too) — I should correct that oversight.

    Yes, it is definitely a good thing to try. If you can find the time and the energy and the gumption — somewhere. . . .

    And the most precious of these may be time. I’ve long thought that, if someone did invent a time machine, the way to make money with it would not be through “gambling” on what you could find out were sure things. (If nothing else, there’d be too much risk of someone objecting to your winning so much — and saying so . . . um, forcefully.) No, the way to get rich with a time machine is to find a way to use it to sell people a little extra time . . . off the clock and off the calendar.

    (What could you do with an extra hour? How about an extra week? What if the time were available before a big test, or a big presentation/assignment at work? Or doubling up that day, so you could do what you had to do and also enjoy the marvelous weather you’d have missed otherwise? Or before you were going to have to say good-bye to someone? Or before you were going to meet someone? . . . the possibilities might be endless even if time weren’t.)

    * * * * * * *

    It’s all a corollary of Parkinson’s Law. That’s the Murphy-like one that says work expands to fill the time available. In my experience, that law is wildly conservative: there’s always WAY more to do than there ever is time to do it in. . . .

    For example, my time spent here is time not spent working on my private MI translation project. I’m hoping to catch ALL the puns — something I just can’t trust to any company that wasn’t bright enough to hire me as an editor after I came back from two years teaching English in Niigata. And maybe, if I’m diligent enough, I can turn the series into a more real-life equivalent or partner to the first manga many worried “Americans” ever heard about and maybe read, back in the 1980s: the Nihon Keizai Manga Nyûmon (Comic-Book Introduction to the Japanese Economy). . . .

    And my time spent here is also time not spent (not directly, at least) figuring out who should sing what in the next episode of “Maison Ikkaraoke”. That’s my nickname for a quasi-series at — a veteran author named SangoKagome came up with a good story of an MI character singing an absolutely appropriate song, and that inspired me to figure out who would sing the natural reply to that song. If that’s enough to make you curious . . . please feel free to wander over. And then don’t hesitate to make suggestions. (I do have some ideas for next songs, but the ones I think are closest to appropriate are usually the ones nobody else would know . . . *sigh*.)

  12. What the heck . . . one more follow-up answer while I’m waiting. (Still. Grr.)

    Yes, I tried to start up a comic-book company — almost 25 years ago. At the time, everyone else seemed to be competing to see who could be the grimmest . . . so we named our company “Renaissance” and pitched it as “the rebirth of fun in comics.

    My two RPG friends were artists; my drawing talent — if that is the correct word — can be seen in my icon over at FanFiction. (If I become a regular over here, I’ll probably bring it with me.) But with a name like “La Pietra”, I was perhaps born to be an editor. And it may not have hurt that my mother’s father was a newspaperman (and sometime writer/editor for the Saturday Evening Post, among others).

    And probably the real starting point for my involvement in the idea of them getting involved in actually breaking into the business was that we’d gone together to the first edition of a new science-fiction/etc. convention in Macon, Georgia (we lived in Columbus, not quite two hours away) . . . and there I’d seen what are still three of my all-time favorite bits of animation.


    The first episode of Urusei Yatsura. And . . . anybody?

    The first episode of Maison Ikkoku.

    (I guess I couldn’t put my foot down any more than — well, if you know, you know, and if you don’t I don’t want to spoil it.)

    Anyway, when our first attempt to get into someone else’s start-up didn’t seem to be going anywhere, we tried on our own. I edited their two series and wrote my own — about . . . well, what the heck again, I’ll dig up the original description from the first-issue editorial: “a unique (or is she?) young woman who was ahead of her time in 1873 – this morning – and will still have some surprises left by day’s end for the brave new world of 1986.”

    The title? Brace yourselves . . . A Fitch in Time.

    Maybe one day it and its companion series will see the light of day. They almost did. We had enough advance orders from the distributors that we would have been able to pay the printers and start paying ourselves . . . but both the printers and the banks thought the other should be the one providing us with credit.

    (About 1/3 of my series’s first issue actually did make it to print. Neophytes as we were, we didn’t know any better than to go up to the publishers of the Comics Buyer’s Guide and ask if they had a preview slot available, and — with apologies to James Thurber — they must have been amused by our presumption, because they said yes.)

    Anyway, it’s after 11pm — must be time to check to see if Viz has bothered to post an explanation yet. . . .

    (Nope. Grr. Growwl, even! . . .)

  13. @ John I really do enjoy reading your thoughts about the play on words 🙂

    As for the Hollies, the name is familiar but that’s about all I’m afraid. Being British I probably should be more aware of them than I am though.

    I agree, I hope Sakura has a nice big allowance if she continues to associate with Rinne-kun. Which of course we know she is, otherwise this would be a very short manga.

    Unless Takahashi is going with short this time round, but somehow I seriously doubt that’s the case 🙂

    I also agree, there is always WAY more stuff to do than time in which to do it.

    Case in point I actually spent a day working from home just to get paperwork done.

    Because after three days of actually trying to get it done at work and failing, because people constantly needed me to do surgery, I realized it wasn’t going to get done in my actual work day! (Sakura is a senior lab technician for a PI doing work on dopamine receptors.)

    Thankfully the surgery backlog is complete and now I just have to contend with all the paperwork that comes with it -_-

    Which of course means by the time I get through with that mountain I’ll be just in time to start the next batch of surgery 😦

    Its a vicious non-ending cycle and usually gets interrupted by someone needing something else done on top of my already full schedule.

    I did ask my boss to clone me, but was told I was too expensive for them to employ two of me XD

    I’ve often thought I need that little device of Hermione’s so I can be in two places at once. Until I realized I’d just find myself needing to be in three places at the same time!

    Maison Ikkaraoke, sounds like it would be a fun read, what is your name over at FF?

    If it makes you feel better, no-on over here as a clue what I’m on about half the time when it comes to media. One of the drawbacks of being a Brit in America.

    Even now I still find myself having to explain some phrase or word, so they usually have no clue when I blather on about some English band or t.v show.

    YAY for Maison Ikkoku, which I actually discovered after InuYasha. But it grabbed me right away. I remember from reading around on message boards how so many people piled on the hatred for InuYasha, saying it got as repetitive as Dragonball.

    But while I think the upgrades did drag on a little bit longer than was necessary, in the end I enjoyed the manga for the characterization, not the battles.

    I enjoyed reading because I cared about Kagome and InuYasha and really wanted to see those crazy kids get it together. I wanted to see if Miroku would survive to marry Sango and if Kouga would EVER get the hint!

    Takahashi has a way of bringing her characters to life so that you find yourself really caring about what happens to them.

    Hmm May 3rd and still nothing from Viz… now we play the waiting game.

    Oh and A Fitch in Time, I like that XD

  14. @ Sakura . . .

    First, thanks for the kind words regarding my words about, um, words.

    The thing about the Hollies was intended to invoke their hit “Bus Stop”. A nice video of the song is available at

    And here are the lyrics for the first verse:

    Bus stop, wet day, she’s there, I say
    Please share my umbrella
    Bus stop, bus goes, she stays, love grows
    Under my umbrella
    All that summer we enjoyed it,
    Wind and rain and shine . . .
    That umbrella we employed it —
    By August she was mine.

    Somehow :], I expect there’s a good chance folks here know the Japanese phrase ai-ai gasa . . . two lovers (ai = love) meeting (ai => au = meet) under and sharing an umbrella kasa). In fact, that’s a symbol they often use instead of initials (or kanji) in a heart. (MI has at least two good instances of this: in my 15-volume set of tankôbon it’s in the “cover page” of Book I, Part 5, and makes a more dramatic appearance at the top of page 154 in Part 8 of Book IX.)

    (And strengthening the link to my initial comment is that this all suggested to me my first ever bi-lingual non-English pun. I can just imagine a Spanish-Japanese romance developing when someone kindly, even innocently, offers hospitality by saying: “Mi casa es su casa.”)

    Oh, geez . . . can you imagine what Viz would say if Takahashi-sensei ended the series after a Mermaid-length run? . . . . . . .

    Good luck catching up (or at least keeping up) with the paperwork and the non-paper work. Both are important, each in its own way.

    Being a clone might not be efficient for your office, but it might be interesting for you — Weird Al reminded us of that:

    Living in stereo, it’s all right —
    Well, I can be my own best friend
    And I can send myself for pizza
    So I say;
    I think I’m a clone now. . . .

    And you have a point about the time-turner . . . like any time- or labor-saving device, it is most effective at saving you time or labor before people figure out you have it. Having PCs means we can accomplish more in the same amount of time — but that doesn’t mean we end up doing less work ourselves, does it? . . .

    *WHOOPS!* We interrupt this interminable reply to bring you this bulletin: Chapter 2 of RINNE is up.

  15. (Ahh . . . that’s a bit better. Now, where was I?)

    I often go by just my initials — jalp. (My parents used to say they were thinking of naming me “Henry Edward”.) But at FanFiction, I expand that to jalp-MI . . . which could also cover the fact that I live in Michigan. (Yeah, that’s the ticket. . . .)

    About the “series” — it isn’t really one, at least in some senses. The two episodes (or should I call them “rounds”?) were written by different authors, and for now are perhaps more of a call and response. Both stories are named for the songs sung in them, reasonably enough . . . but here’s where it may start to get tricky for anime devotees: the songs come, not from anime, but from a US animated program. Well, I don’t know for sure where the animation is actually done, but the show is “American”. Anyone reading this who knows the show — Fairly Odd Parents — won’t need much more of an intro to the stories than their (song) titles. In case someone isn’t familiar with the songs, though, I’m providing more YouTube links:

    * Episode #1 (written by SangoKagome):
    “My Shiny Teeth and Me”


    (this one has lyrics!)

    * Episode #2 (written by jalp-MI):
    “Find Your Voice”


    The title of #1 also gives a slight clue to who is singing, but it took me a while to figure out who should be performing in #2. And it’s taking me even longer to figure out who’s next — as the postscript to the story and my profile suggest. (And if they do suggest that to you, why not suggest something back to me? . . .)

    Maybe the gradually expanding presence of BBC America and its ilk will help others get more of your references. Me, I’ve been to Britain once in my life, for two weeks . . . but I know a bit about some series I’ve seen parts of, and even an occasional tidbit about a series I haven’t seen but wish I had. Yes, [Prime] Minister is one of the latter. (And speaking of British entertainment, my use of “Geez” shows I’m an adherent of the Flanders & Swann theory of linguistic conservation. They always used to say that, if wicket words and pungent phrases came into everyday use, we’d have nothing left for special occasions. . . .)

    I agree about Takahashi-sensei‘s focus or emphasis on characters over situations. She makes me think of Wilkie Collins in that respect. And I think I may have figured out a significant part of why we like her characters so much, and want to see them do well. A consistent if not constant theme of hers is, not the redeeming, but the nourishing or developing power of love. Suffer though she makes them do (like real people we know often do), her characters do develop — and learn — and grow. In many directions. Up, out, forward. And towards each other. Like real people do — like we do, and hope to do. And that’s why they grow on us, too. . . .

    And finally (finally!) . . . I’m glad you like the title A Fitch in Time. The story’s rather dated — hey, it was written almost 25 years ago! And that means 25 years’ worth less experience, too, so the writing itself may not be as polished as I could do now. But, as whoever-it-is says at the end of the album Rocky Mountain High: “There, there were some good things in there.” It was my first real attempt to run multiple plotlines through a single story — and, as far as we got with it (my artists, my editor, and me), it seemed to work. And it has one of the better lines of dialogue I’ve ever come up with, too: “Prof, how can a man of your superior intellect stand to go out with someone so lacking in brains and class that she picks you over me?” (No, the speaker wasn’t a perfect character by any means — but he was learning. . . .)

    And with that, I see by the fairly-old-for-a-PC clock in the corner of the screen that it’s already tomorrow even on the West Coast. So I’d better knock this off and try to get some sleep as preparation for — today. But thanks for the “company”.

  16. Whoa! Whoops! And other noises. . . .

    I just thought I was listing the addresses for those YouTube pages. Didn’t think they’d bring in viewing screens right there. (It didn’t when I put in the “Bus Stop” link. What gives?) You can tell from the writing that I didn’t expect these unvanished acquisitions. . . .

    Anyway, I apologize. If having those picture frames in here is a no-no, please have the administrator wipe them out or do whatever else is necessary and appropriate. If it would work instead, please feel free to either

    * find a way to provide the addresses without linking, or
    * leave a note saying people could e-mail me for the addresses.

    Or just wipe those links entirely and let people search on their own. (It’s not too hard to find those things on YouTube, though not with the “original artwork”.)

    Again, sorry about that, you CI leaders — I hope you CI didn’t mean any harm. . . .

  17. @ John, Thanks for the clarification on the Hollies song, I had been wondering about the connection 🙂

    I took a look over at FF and really enjoyed what I read. I totally suck at finding suitable themes for characters, but I look forward to reading more.

    Thanks, the paper work is going steadily. Had to stop briefly to run an experiment and go over the data for that, but paperwork should resume Friday.

    After which I have to find time to fit in training for myself, training for others and prepping for the crap ton of surgery I’ll be doing come the end of the month.

    After which I’ll have probably triple the amount of paper work I currently have.

    *Side note* Crap the Pingu’s scored. C’mon Washington, its bad enough my Wings lost, don’t let the Penguins get ahead!*

    Oh those videos were a blast and I particularly enjoyed the picture of Team 7 in Fairly Odd Parents style, so damn funny.

    Ah ‘Yes Prime Minister’ what a classic. I miss a lot of the classic shows from home. Only fools and horses, Last of the Summer Wine, One Foot in the Grave.

    When I first moved over they were showing Keeping up appearances I really enjoyed seeing that again.

    I LOVE TBS I think it was for showing The Casebook of Sherlock Holmes. I fell in love with it when I was a little girl. I’d been mesmerized by Conan Doyle’s Holmes stories ever since I started reading the books at about 7 years old.

    I was a few years ahead of everyone in my year group when it came to reading. I devoured books my poor father was quite the regular at the library.

    To see a character I’d fallen so in love with come to life so vividly was amazing. I know some people find his Holmes too cold and maybe even a bit cruel, but to me he was wonderful. Sharp, witty, analytical, precise in his movements, to me he was perfect Holmes and he still is.

    My Grandfather is Scottish and I sorely miss a detective show called Taggert, which considering its Scottish is probably never going to see the light of day here.

    Especially considering I was the only kid in school who could understand a word, it probably wouldn’t go over well here.

    Well okay I know one other person who would LOVE it.

    Gah so getting off topic. I can’t help rambling once I get started.

    Maybe that’s why I like characterization so much over setting. So much of what makes Holmes a great character is more to do with the inner workings of his mind rather than the setting. Trying to puzzle the mystery out along with Watson is what makes it entertaining. No exotic locales, time travel or demons here. Just fantastic characters and some good flexing of the old brain cells.

    Oh don’t worry about the picture frames, I have no problem at all with them 🙂

  18. Interesting — the picture frames are having some problem with me at the moment; they’re a bit shy about showing themselves. Oh, well, I don’t need the frames . . . I know the songs.

    Of course, that’s part of the problem in coming up with more rounds of “Maison Ikkaraoke”. It’s not just that I need to find a song that suits the characters and the situations almost as well as the first two did. And songs that don’t give too much away to either the reader or the other characters. I need songs that lots of people know — or at least can find to listen to around the time they read an episode. (I’ve just about decided that, as long as the songs are popular and appropriate enough, I don’t have to worry *too* much about anime or non-anime origins. Or even anachronisms.)

    There’s a song almost nobody else knows. Alan Arkin wrote it, way back in his days at the founding or so of Second City, I think. It starts out with a bit of piano-jazz accompaniment, supplemented by some strings and such later on — maybe it was intended to be “Alan Arkin does Frank Sinatra singing a tune backed by Nelson Riddle and His Orchestra”. Anyway, here are the lyrics — orthography mine, slightly in the style of e e cummings and/or archy the cockroach:

    I like you . . .
    . . . ’cause you don’t make me nervous!
    I — met someone like you before —
    But only onceortwice . . .
    Once or twice . . .

    You’ll do . . .
    My blood pressure’s normal —
    I . . . haven’t lost no sleepatall . . .
    Not since Francine! —
    And it’s po-ssible forme to —
    concentrate — on my work! . . .

    I’m glad I’m not walking on air . . .
    And no trumpets go off — in my ear . . .
    I don’t say to myself, “Get ahold, myself!” —
    And I don’t get a rash — when you’re neeeeaarrrrr. . . .

    You’retrustworthy . . .
    Iwouldn’tworryifIhaddagoaway forafewweeks . . .
    . . . You don’t nag me for moneyallatime . . .
    And one thing I forgot —
    You’re a very good cook —
    And I cer-tain-ly looove toooo eeeeat. . . . . . . . .

    I can just see Godai singing this — belying the lyrics every other word or so, and matching the original singer’s timing/delivery almost by accident. (Probably Yotsuya at the piano — he probably dug up the sheet music somewhere. And knowing him, he might try to horn in on the last lines, too.)

    Of course, there is at least one way I could get away with trying out this song and a few others in my leitmotif-hearted semi-series. Without even resorting to branching melody-lines, even. Godai could certainly imagine himself singing a few tunes, and their results. Not all of them good, of course. . . .

    For example, if he guesses that Kyôko was a fan of the film Melody (or Chiisa na Koi no Merodii as it’s known there — very well known there, in fact), he could try to sing one of the Bee Gees tunes from that. “First of May”, perhaps — or “To Love Somebody”. Could he get through them? Dunno. If he did get through the latter, would it please Kyôko or irk her because she thought he was suggesting she didn’t know how to love anymore? Dunno.

    He’d blush way too much to make it through actually singing Daniel Bedingfield’s “If You’re Not the One” to her . . . though I’d bet he’d like to be able to. (And to have that much vocal range. . . .) He might have a narrowly better chance to make it to the end of a cooler-toned but just as romantic song such as “Like a Lover” by Sergio Mendes and Brasil ’66. (Maybe that’s what Mitaka’s planning next?)

    Now, if Godai were at a box with Sakamoto and some of his other college buddies, some evening not long after Sôichirô-san‘s meinichi, he just *might* feel bold enough to try singing “Baby’s in Black”. (Maybe after Sakamoto had ragged on him to join in a duet of “To All the Girls I’ve Loved Before”?) But I don’t think he’d do that in front of her, and even in his fantasies he’d probably figure out why not. Of course, that suggests other Beatles possibilities — “That Boy”, perhaps, or if he’s in the mood to challenge Mitaka more directly, “Can’t Buy Me Love”. . . .

    * * * * * * *

    Kyôko poses a different problem — at least as long as both Mitaka and Godai are there with her. She wouldn’t want to show too much favoritism — or even too much encouragement, I think. And how delicate of a hint could she get away with singing if Akemi and Ichinose-san are there nudging and nudzhing her? They’d be liable to push her to warm up with something raucous and female like “We Are Family” — though that has other connotations these days — or “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun”, maybe. (Maybe some of the Tennis Club ladies, and/or Mitaka’s college students, could join in.)

    After one of those, if she had to sing again on her own, she might want something a bit quieter. But what? Maybe some early Olivia Newton-John. Maybe — but probably not “I Honestly Love You” unless other women had shown up for both men.

    If she were still feeling mellow about them — or at least about Godai — and if we were sticking to the anime-song theme, she could maybe sing “Follow Your Dream” from the original Project A-Ko. That might be letting a bit of partiality slip through, though.

    Or . . . if Godai had picked the Beatles’ show-tune hit, “Till There Was You” (from The Music Man) . . . maybe that would have opened up Broadway for Kyôko. If she’s still irked, and willing to be backed up by a not-so-serious chorus, she could sing “I’m Not At All in Love” from The Pajama Game. Or if she’s tipsy enough to be in a slightly confessional mood, perhaps “Losing My Mind” from Follies.

    Or maybe she’d slip into a song she might think was appropriate for her situation and suitable to remind both men of it — until she got further in. The one I’m thinking of here is “First Cut Is the Deepest”. (With the lyrics Sheryl Crow sings, so without the “when it comes to being loved, [s]he’s first” line in the original Cat Stevens version.)

    * * * * * * *

    But maybe neither of them get to sing next, anyway. What if other characters show up?

    What in the world would Kozue sing? For some reason, I can’t get too far in thinking about her selection. (Maybe “As I Lay Me Down” by Sophie B. Hawkins? Or maybe she goes for ONJ and sings “Let Me Be There”. . . .)

    Have we met Yagami at this point in the story? If she and her friends got into the karaoke bar (they are only high-school students, after all), would they snap up “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” before the Ikkookoos could? Or would she (possibly “foreshadowingly”) sing “One Way or Another”?

    (I suppose if Asuna were ever to frequent one of these places, and not be in a *very* private box, the song she’d want to sing would be a Monkees tune: “Gonna Buy Me a Dog”. . . .)

    * * * * * * *

    And then there’s the possibility that Kyôko and Godai dither, or hang back, so much that everyone else gets tired of singing and waiting for them to pick their own songs — their own separate songs — and shove them up front for a duet. (What favorites does that scenario suggest to you? One of the first that comes to mind for me is “After All”. . . .)

    * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
    * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    Anyway, on to other distractions . . . by way of a transition.

    Yes, Jeremy Brett’s Holmes has to rank up there with the best. It may be a matter of taste, or what you ran into first, to choose between his and the previously best-known portrayal, Basil Rathbone’s. And maybe Rathbone loses a point or two because he had to do an out-of-period Holmes, set around or even in WWII. (I have a sneaking admiration for Brent Spiner as Data as Holmes, too — but part of that is the dual layering. . . .)

    What I can see of Taggart at Wikipedia does sound interesting. Maybe somebody will bring it over here one of these days — while they’re bringing back other things, like Good Neighbors (née The Good Life) and Waiting for God and The Fall and Rise of Reggie Perrin. (The US version of that latter one was a good try, and had good people in it, but never quite got over the hump of a re-animation to become a reincarnation.)

    * * * * * * *

    And hey, speaking of reincarnation (see? I told you it was a transition) . . . I’ve had a few more thoughts about where RIN-NE may be headed. (As Arlo Guthrie might note at this point, “Y’remember RIN-NE? There’s a blog entry about RIN-NE. . . .”)

    One thing a lot of people are wondering about is how Takahashi-sensei is going to kick off the expected conflict between our lead characters. And these two independent, self-sufficient people. Used to fending for themselves, to being able to do what others can’t. What do you think will happen to either one if circumstances force her/him to depend on someone else? Or, “worse” yet, if they’re stuck depending on each other? Any chance of friction being generated there, do you suppose? . . . :]

    But how could that happen? Well, to Sakura-chan, Rinne-kun could be a clue to what happened to her in the past that made/led/enabled her to see ghosts, of course. And certainly Sakura-chan is already for Rinne-kun a reasonably convenient source of finances — somebody he can ask for money for his work, rather than tricking it out of other classmates . . . and without having to get around disbelief, or lying by telling the truth and smiling (as I suspect he did to that coach in Chapter 2).

    Still, I think something more intense may need to happen — or at least may well happen to make the situation more tense and intense, in the Takahashi tradition. And I still think it’s possible that the something may be something happening to that haori Rinne-kun finds so useful. But what’s going to precipitate such an accident?

    Maybe the clue is on the next-to-last page of Chapter 2, when Sakura-chan reacts with obvious concern on discovering why the Phantom Caller didn’t make it to his behind-the-gym appointment. I don’t know that she has to save him and change history to get things rolling — though who this boy is, and from where and when, are all interesting questions. But this is a break in her otherwise calm, cool, collected attitude. An all-too-human reaction.

    And maybe this is where she and Rinne-kun will see the break, the difference, between them. Maybe that will be their first, or their essential, battle line. Whether or not you can do what he does (what probably they will end up doing together a lot) and care about the souls you’re steering to the Wheel. Is caring, wanting to make things better, an integral part of the job and ultimately helpful in helping others cycle toward nirvana? Or is it just storing up regrets in this world, and risking falling back yourself? Or some of each?

    Yes . . . that could fit. And, if I do say so myself, it might be just about interesting enough a theme to be worthy of Takahashi-sensei‘s imagination. . . .

    Anyway, I’ve spent way too long on what was going to be mostly a thank-you. But I do thank you — and I look forward to further reasons for more conversation! . . .

  19. @ john, OMG I do know Daniel Beddingfield!! XD

    I like the lyrics for the song you think might work with Godai.

    Ooh I like the scenario of them getting forced to sing a duet! Its a likely scenario and would be totally cute!

    Actually Brent Spiner made quite the striking Holmes himself. I was actually pretty impressed by the actor they had play Moriaty. Not bad for a holodeck creation eh?

    But I think your right, he was the Holmes I grew up with, so that is probably why Brett’s is my favourite portrayal.

    As for Taggert, total happiness! I found out that Netflix has quite a few episodes of that. Once I’m through marathoning Macross again through that, I’ll have to add some to the queue.

    Its kind of a bittersweet thing right now. I’ve been slack on posting because my grandfather may not have long left. So I’ve not felt like posting too much, I’ve been far too fixated on the situation back in England. His time has gone from 3 to 6 months to a matter of days in just a couple of weeks 😦

    So I’m terribly sorry we haven’t gotten back to you about the avatar, but if you want to send us the file I’ll try and get that sorted out.

    Oh my those certainly are good picks. I love both ‘The Good Life’ and ‘The Rise and Fall of Reginald Perrin.’ I also enjoyed a show called ‘Just Good Friends.’

    I think you might also enjoy a show called ‘To the Manor born.’

    I’m sure Sakura’s natural curiosity is going to drag her into all sorts of adventures with Rinne-kun. I have to admit the fact he has a haori with mystical power makes me smile, considering InuYasha’s special robes 🙂

    Newsletter? Where?

    And ooh thanks for the heads up. I have to say I really enjoyed that chapter, Rinne-kun’s reaction to the suit was so cute.

    Hmm I wonder if this is how we’ll get to see the rest of Sakura’s family. Maybe she’ll feel so bad that he had to give it up, she’ll give him her brother’s spare/old one. XD

    Well you never know right?

  20. Oh, my gosh — I didn’t mention the newsletter here?!

    Well, when you’re at the general RIN-NE access page

    there is a menu basically at the top (below an ad, next to the RumicWorld logo) . . . and one of the buttons in that menu says:

    – – – – – – –
    Subscribe Now

    If you click on it, you get to a form page:

    I’d heard here and there that Viz has sometimes been reluctant to let you go away from their newsletters, so I approached this with caution. But the form is fairly simple and doesn’t insist on you handing over much personal information . . . just your e-mail address (so they can send you the newsletter) and your age (to confirm that you’re at least 16 and can get[/ask for] the newsletter). You also need to tell them if you want the newsletter in HTML or text format. And there’s a chance to get more informaion from them — but it’s an opt-IN option, and not even checked as the default. And if you decide you want to cancel your subscription, that’s at the bottom of the same page.

    So it seemed worth trying — and it seems to have worked.

    * * * * * * *

    I sympathize with you about your grandfather.

    My mother passed away a bit over two years ago — four months after being diagnosed with lung cancer. But we were able to help her stay at home, which she wanted to do . . . and she got to see her grandchildren for Christmastime . . . and to see how much everybody here loved her and her 20-year bookstore . . . and, as the younger of my two younger sisters said, “She never really liked February anyway”. . . .

    So the best I can say is to do your best for him, and for the rest of the family . . . and, as the *older* of my two younger sisters might add, “Good luck — whatever that turns out to be.”

    * * * * * * *

    I do remember “To the Manor Born” — don’t know quite why I didn’t see as much of it as of some others. “Executive Stress” I think I did see more often. And more recently “As Time Goes By”. (Who knew M and double-Queen Elizabeth could be funny? Well, maybe I could have guessed. . . .)

    But I do have a soft spot for Reginald Iolanthe Perrin — it felt like the first one *I* discovered ahead of others in my family. (The nearest else I get to that for British comedy is a radio program, “I’m Sorry, I’ll Read That Again”. . . .)

    * * * * * * *

    No need to worry about the avatar. If you want, you can get it from my page at FanFiction, I think. Or if not, you can let me know how else to get it to you. (Actually, I can see some mild points of similarity between that and what I get here now! . . .)

    * * * * * * *

    Yes, it was a good chapter — and I think should allay any doubts that this series is intended to be a comedy. (Amnesia after death! . . . and “Do you really want your cell phone back if that ghost caller is just going to keep threatening you?” . . . and more.)

    And that’s an interesting idea you have about how we might start seeing Sakura-chan‘s family. I’m also curious as to what role Suzuki-sensei will play from here on. Did Rinne-kun hypnotize him “off-screen” after the incident was over? Or can he only hypnotize people into forgetting — in which case maybe Suzuki-sensei has to be allowed to remember something, because otherwise — well, don’t want to spoil things too much for folks who haven’t seen it yet. If he does get to remember, will he be more of a help or a hindrance in the future? What other Takahashi adults will he remind us of? . . .

    Well, only a week to wait until we start finding out more. . . . :]

  21. In the past day or two — and in the back of my mind — I’ve mostly been pondering over quaint and curious pieces of forgotten lore from Chapter 3. What did Rinne-kun think of Sakura-chan‘s idea of whipping the haori back onto ghost-Suzuki so Suzuki-sensei could see him? (And did he brood about it more after it wound up costing him his in-kind pay for the job? Will he hold that against her?) And so on.

    But last night, as I was drifting off to sleep, I suddenly had a flashback — all the way back to the beginning. (Yeah, yeah, it’s not that far back — but it was a flash.)

    Oba-chan (a/k/a O-nê-chan) was wearing her haori when we met her — however briefly . . . and Sakura-chan could see her.

    That incident didn’t give Sakura-chan the power to see ghosts. She already had it! . . .

    Maybe she was born with it, maybe not. But she had it before she got hypnotized — or lost. Though maybe she got hypnotized into losing her memory of how she got it . . . or when. After all, she’s the one who said (well, thought-ballooned at us) that she started seeing ghosts about that time — so she definitely doesn’t seem to remember that she had the power/ability/talent/whatever before then.

    Well, it’s a point to ponder — for . . . well, maybe only the next five days now! . . . :]

  22. @ John My bad I thought you meant you had a newsletter! I’ve been a subscriber to Viz’s one for a while 🙂

    I’m sorry to hear about your mother. I was incredibly upset I think mostly because I couldn’t be there and even though it was stupid to think so, worried he would think I didn’t care.

    Which is utter nonsense, considering I’d told him how much I loved him a few months before on the phone.

    I managed to get pictures sent and a video email and after that felt a bit better about not being able to be there.

    He passed on Friday, so in a way I’m glad, because he didn’t suffer for very long, though that doesn’t stop one being sad.

    He got to do everything he wanted to do before he went, so that is something.

    Judi Dench is a great actress 🙂

    Ahh okay I’ll try getting the avatar off of FF, I’ll let you know if I have any problems.

    You’re right, Sakura-chan could see her, very interesting.

    Oh my he was the butler in the Nanny? I totally didn’t realize that and I’m usually good at stuff like that.

  23. My condolences to you and the rest of your family. (But it does help to have let someone know — and to be able to point to some comforting things about what happened. And OTOH it’s not easy sometimes to avoid thinking of the not-so-good things . . . or the not-as-we-could-have-wished things. . . .)

    I’d be happy enough to send an avatar file, but I haven’t seen how to do that.

    * * * * * * *

    A few other people with whom I shared my newsflash (and thank you, Sir Winston) still think “Obanê-chan” (my own coinage) quite probably gave Sakura-chan her ghost-seeing ability. At least one other suggested she rescued Sakura-chan from her “spirited-awayers”, and let Sakura-chan see her. That’s an interesting possibility, too.

    But then Sakura-chan was able to see the Wheel as well. And that seemed to surprise Obanê-chan — remember she paused before warning Sakura-chan that you couldn’t come back if you rode that ride.

    (Why did Obanê-chan say there was no coming back from a ride on the Wheel? Isn’t the whole point of the Wheel that people generally *do* come back? — if not the same as they went, of course. Was it just a simplification for a four-year-old or so? Or was there some reason why it would be a permanent stay for Sakura-chan in particular if she rode? Or for Obanê-chan herself, maybe?)

    Anyway, maybe this is why Obanê-chan applied such a heavy dose of noogie-shock therapy — she “rubbed it in” so hard, Sakura-chan felt it a week later! And felt it more than hunger or fear or loneliness after a week in the woods. . . .

    But wait a minute. Was she in the woods for a week? Presuming she’s right that she was “whereabouts unknown” for a week, as she reminisced, we don’t know when their scene together came during that week. And I’m not sure how safe it is to rely on Sakura-chan‘s memory of that time — or before it. (Obviously, or I’d believe her memory that she couldn’t see ghosts before about that time.)

    And about that hypnosis — both Obanê-chan and Rinne-kun gave her just about the same instruction: “Forget everything you saw here today.” What if that worked — but (basically) only literally? Sakura-chan wouldn’t remember the Wheel itself — though it’d be understandable if she now had some déjà vu — but even if she forgot what (or whom) she’d seen, she might still remember how she’d seen it.

    And later on, Rinne-kun‘s phrasing could work even worse against him. That déjà view of the Wheel might leave Sakura-chan less than totally unaware of it. And she didn’t have to remember what she’d seen at the Wheel to know he was a QSG (quasi-shinigami) — she’d seen that in class! . . .

    * * * * * * *

    But enough of my way-out speculations. Well, almost enough. Just two more fingers to point.

    One of the fingers is pointing at that haori of Rinne-kun‘s — if it’s so special, can it be a QSG team/company/gang uniform? Or is it in fact unique? Is it really — someone else’s? (And, if so, what could that mean? Obanê-chan as Ben Kenobi? Or something even more outrageous and JK-ish: Obanê-chan as Rinne-kun?!! Cursed to come back as the “wrong” — or at least the unexpected — gender after saving Sakura-chan from reincarnating, and what comes before it?!)
    (Well, then why wouldn’t he/she remember Sakura-chan?)
    (Well, give me a minute. . . .)

    And the other finger points — at the Wheel itself . . . which may be in the same place, next to that same mountain (the one behind Sakura-chan‘s Grandma’s place?) in both its appearances in Chapter 1. Look at those panels again . . . and then look at the stands along the rocky path, and what their banners say — well, the legible ones at least. Those places may be more than just the stereotypical souvenir shops you can see when you climb almost every mountain. . . .

    * * * * * * *

    And so, back to lighter fare. Which reminds me. . . .

    This particular newsletter is really more of just a newsflash that “the new phone book’s here, the new phone book’s here!” . . .

    In fact, here’s what the issue I got says:

    Subject: [[The Rumic World] ] RIN-NE Chapter 3 Live!
    Date: Wed, 13 May 2009 17:37:35 -0700

    (See, I told you it was a newsflash. . . .)

    In partnership with /Shonen Sunday/ magazine, VIZ is pleased to present the latest chapter of Rumiko Takahashi’s new manga classic /RIN-NE/ on

    Sakura and Rinne have tracked down a wandering spirit, but will they be able to release it from its attachment to the world of the living?

    Click here to read chapters 1-3 at!


    Then there’s a bit on the latest blog entry and a reminder that Chapter 4 is due out on the 20th, a copyright notice, the snail-mail addres where this e-mail came from, links to Viz’s privacy policy and ratings — and this to end it all:

    You’re receiving THE RUMIC WORLD Newsletter because you subscribed to it. To unsubscribe, go to:


    . . . and I’ll shut up now.

  24. Today’s the day again . . . and, as soon as I get this issue’s newsflash, I’ll let folks here know.

    Mind you, I’m likely to have to go out this afternoon. (We should be so lucky that they get the translation done this time within working hours on the West Coast, or before 8pm EDT.) But I promise I’ll check my inbox when I get back. . . .

  25. A few more “Maison Ikkaraoke” ideas while we’re waiting . . . 😐

    If Sergio Mendes and Brasil ’66 is/are in the air, and Akemi feels like singing something introspective (however seriously meant or not), maybe she could follow her previous star turn with “So Many Stars”. (Of course, if I had her do that, I might have to put some cameo appearances in the audience, darling. . . .)

    Or if Kyôko’s the one feeling her feelings strongly enough for them to show a bit more than usual, she might sing one of the many wonderful songs of the Wailin’ Jennys: “Beautiful Dawn”. (If you don’t know them by now — go find out!)

    Or maybe Yotsuya could lead the Ikkookoos in their next number — more suited to them as a group: “All Night Long”. . . .

    And the hits will just keep on comin’ (as Michael Nesmith’s album proclaimed) as long as I’ve got nickels rattling in my brain — or whatever the exact change is for a jukebox these days. . . . :]

  26. Well, it’s 2:30am EDT now — I’ve stayed up, and had enough time to see Chiisa na Koi no Merodi- all the way through. As the conductor is supposed to say at the “end” of Johann Strauss Jr.’s _Perpetual Motion_, “That’s enough”. . . .

    Presuming I wake up in the morning, I’ll let everyone know when I got my newsletter. If I have yet. (*sigh*)

    I hope everyone’s enjoying the chapter anyway. (And isn’t it a good thing this time I got impatient and looked for myself? . . . :] . . .)

  27. Red (hair) alert! Red (hair) alert! Chapter 5 is posted! . . .

    (OTOH, I am beginning to feel that I shouldn’t wait for my next ‘newsflash’ newsletter issue before I ask if this entry/thread is getting worrisomely long. . . .)

  28. (So of course, as soon as I make the rounds posting my alert — and then make my first circuit of the pages in Chapter 5 — what pops into my inbox? Why, what else but
    a ‘newsflash’ newsletter issue announcing — both Chapter 4 and Chapter 5. (!)

    Well, at least it may be back. :]

  29. @ John , It is starting to. I had planned to post more regularly than this. But it got away from me as things tend to do.

    Although I did get a quick catch up post in, so we can start adding to that one 🙂

    I also keep forgetting to ask, do you have a gravatar account? Because I think that is the only way for you to use your personal avatar on here.

  30. Parkinson’s Law strikes again!

    Okay . . . I’ll move over to the new post after this message.

    (And no, I don’t have a gravatar account. So maybe I’ll have to look into that if I want to make more regular appearances here — and/or just to avoid becoming identified as “that old bespectacled-triangle Takahashi fan”. . . :] . . .)



    Before I close, I want to pass on a link for that Wailin’ Jennys song — because it’s also a very nice AMV . . . built of Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts scenes! Or so its creator says — I know not those things, alas . . . but I’m not sure if that’s talked me OUT of finding the song a place at “Maison Ikkaraoke” (because it was used so well here) or INTO it (because the AMV shows, with these images, how well the song also fits that story).

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