Maison Ikkoku 6 by Rumiko Takahashi: B+

From the back cover:
Grandma Godai comes for an extended visit and manages to meddle in Godai’s love life at every turn. Before she leaves, Grandma brokers a dream date for her wishy-washy grandson, but the night doesn’t turn out exactly as she planned…

Even though I didn’t like every story in this volume, as a whole, they formed a cozy, charming reading experience. In any other series, a random baseball chapter would probably irk me, but Maison Ikkoku can pull it off.

The one chapter I actively disliked featured Godai and his friend Sakamoto attending a welcoming party for freshmen. It was the first time drinking for one of the female attendees, and when she got drunk, Godai came very close to taking advantage of her. This was all played for comedic effect, of course. I don’t remember this being in the anime, so I have to wonder whether it was removed to kind of downplay Godai’s scumbaggery.

Godai’s grandma was in most of the stories, and stirred things up with many awkward questions and demands. She and the neighbors were especially annoying in this volume, but just when I was getting thoroughly fed up with the propensity of the latter to show up everywhere and ruin things for Godai, things took a turn for the cute when Godai and Kyoko ran away to escape them and had much fun in the process.

I’ve said before that Maison Ikkoku is like manga crack, but I think it’s more like manga meatloaf. Filling, satisfying comfort food with one essential recipe that can be tweaked many different ways. A perennial favorite.

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