Maison Ikkoku Frequently Asked Questions
Last updated January 4, 2000
Note: This FAQ is a small subset of the Maison Ikkoku Guide. You can get the
text version of this faq at http://www.csua.berkeley.edu/~leon/mi/docs/mifaq
- What is Piyo Piyo?
- Who is that guy who appears in the Maison
Ikkoku movie? I've never seen him before!
- How many volumes of Manga are there?
- I heard that Viz is translating the manga, how
many volumes have they put out?
- What's this Complete Music Box? Does it
include all the music of the series? Can I still buy it?
- So what is Yotsuya's real job? His real
- Why were there different opening and ending
animations and songs for episode 24? And why was it only for
that episode? Did the song appear in any other episodes?
- I heard Viz didn't translate some of the
manga chapters. Which ones and how come? (Why are there
continuity gaps in the Viz translations?)
- How many TV episodes are there? Movies?
- Why can't I seem to get any fansubs?
- Why does everyone look different in the final
- For what years did the manga run? TV series?
- Is there more merchandise being produced?
- What kind of car does Mitaka drive?
- What are tankoubon? Wideban? Bunkouban?
Piyo Piyo is the sound that chicks make. For more information on this,
His name is Nikaido, and he first appears the middle of the Maison
Ikkoku manga (tankoubon 8, page 89). The writers left him out in the anime,
but the production team for the movie felt they should include him since he
was part of the manga. Nikaido is basically a blabbermouth who doesn't
really consider the consequences of what he's saying. Most of Nikaido's
lines were given to Yotsuya in the anime, effectively making the Yotsuya in
the manga seems more tight-lipped than the Yotsuya in the anime.
There are 15 tankoubon. These were later re-released as 10 wideban, and
then as 10 bunkouban. You can learn about the differences between these
manga sizes here.
They've released 13 volumes in graphic novel form:
They are currently working on releasing several stories they skipped in
their original run (stories they never translated for one reason or
another). These stories will be published in Animerica Extra.
- Maison Ikkoku
- Maison Ikkoku: Family Affairs
- Maison Ikkoku: Home Sweet Home
- Maison Ikkoku: Good Housekeeping
- Maison Ikkoku: Empty Nest
- Maison Ikkoku: Bedside Manners
- Maison Ikkoku: Intensive Care
- Maison Ikkoku: Domestic Dispute
- Maison Ikkoku: Learning Curves
- Maison Ikkoku: Dogged Pursuit
- Maison Ikkoku: Student Affairs
- Maison Ikkoku: The Hounds of War
- Maison Ikkoku: Game, Set, Match
The Complete Music Box set consists of 8 CDs which contain
almost all the music in the series, including extra vocals not on other
CDs. It is missing a few background music (BGM) selections, and some
remixes. It is no longer being produced, but it can occasionally be found
new (very rarely) or used in Japan. For detailed information on the music
set, look at http://www.csua.berkeley.edu/~leon/mi/html/mibox.html.
No one knows, except perhaps Rumiko Takahashi, who isn't telling! Lots
of guesses have been made, though. Some people think he might work for the
JCIA (a fictional organization...really), and base this guess on some
earlier Takahashi manga (in the Rumic Theater series) that
featured a very Yotsuya-ish character.
At the time, Maison Ikkoku's television ratings were not as high, so a new
song was used. After the episode aired, there was a disagreement between
the creators of the show, so it was switched back. (Incidentally, a new
character designer was also hired starting at episode 25.) The songs are
by the Irish artist Gilbert O'Sullivan, and are titled Alone Again
(Naturally) and Get Down. Alone Again
(Naturally) was the number one pop song in the US for 6 weeks in
1972. It was also used again in episode 27, during the scene when Kyoko
mistakes Godai's silhouette for that of her late husband.
Five chapters (tankoubon 1, parts 2-6) were cut. Rumor has it that they
were cut because Viz didn't want to deal with explaining the college
entrance exam situation in Japan. Some continuity was lost in this
section; the scenes that were later referenced were:
For some reason, they also cut the skating rink chapter (tankoubon ?, part
?). Sometimes there is no fathoming the thought-processes at Viz...
- Godai's grandmother (Yukari) was introduced
- Godai buys a brooch for Kyoko as a Christmas present but can't find
the chance to give it to her.
There are 96 television episodes, an animated movie, and a live-action
movie. There are also two specials and an OAV:
- Through the Passing Seasons - Reviews the series.
- Maison Ikkoku Prelude - When the Cherry Blossoms in the
Springtime Return - A video which collects all of Kyoko's
flashbacks of Souichirou, with some dialogue to connect the
- The Maison Ikkoku Extra OAV: Shipwrecked on Ikkoku
Island. This is based on a 23-page "bangaihen", or
"extra story", which was included at the end of tankoubon six.
Viz recently bought out the rights to Maison Ikkoku, so most if not all
fansubbers have stopped distributing tapes. Please support anime being
brought to the North America by buying from Viz the dubbed version, subbed
version, or both.
In short, the character designer changed. Moriyama Yuji (who has done
series such as Nuku Nuku) handled the initial character designs. After
episode 24, Moriyama was replaced by Takada Akemi (the designer for
Kimagure Orange Road), who stayed on as character designer for the rest of
the television episodes. Moriyama returned for the final movie as
character designer, but the designs are obviously different, even from
those at the beginning of the TV series.
Maison Ikkoku ran from November 1980 to April 1987, in a monthly manga
magazine called Big Comic Spirits. The TV series ran from
March 26, 1986 through March 2, 1988 on Fuji TV (a TV network similar to
NBC or Fox in the States).
There are "Piyo Piyo" T-shirts available from Viz through their J-Pop site. In Japan there is very little
new merchandise being made, though occasionally something will pop up.
Other than that, there have been sightings of a Kyoko doll, a windows
screensaver, and a small address book type wallet. There are also the LDs,
CDs and manga for sale if you can find them. A DVD box set is currently
being solicited through the Kitty Fan Club in Japan. You apparently have to
be a member to get the set, and they only accept memberships from inside
In terms of not-so-legitimate items, there are several kinds of posters,
playing and trading cards that are rumored to floating out there.
Mitaka's car appears to be a Nissan Sylvia. Credit goes to John D
deGozzaldi and Isamu Nakamura for finding this one out!).
Some pictures can be found here:
issan Sylvia S110
Tankoubon (not tankouban) are the most common size for manga in Japan. They
are usally about 11.3cm by 17.7cm. The thickness varies, though, depending
on how much they include (the same applies to the following two types as
well). The Maison Ikkoku tankoubon are a little larger than
this: 12.8cm by 18.0cm.
Wideban are bigger compilations and usually contain the equivalent of
about 1.5 tankoubon volumes. They are usually about 15cm wide by 21cm
Bunkouban are much smaller--pocket-size--, though they contain about the
same amount of material as a wideban. They're usually about 10.5cm wide by
If you have any input or questions, please
send them in. Thanks!