Maison Ikkoku 8 by Rumiko Takahashi: B

From the back cover:
Godai’s eavesdropping causes him to misunderstand Kyoko’s words—again. This time, it’s during Kyoko’s visit to her former husband’s graveside. A new wide-eyed tenant, Nozomu Nikaido, moves into room No. 2 and quickly causes trouble for the other Maison Ikkoku residents, especially Godai in his pursuit of Kyoko.

I was looking forward to Nozomu’s appearance, since he was left out of the anime. He arrives just after a couple of chapters with a more serious tone—Kyoko realizes she may be starting to get over Soichiro, and asks for his forgiveness—and dominates the rest of the volume with his antics.

It’s not that I disliked the result, it’s just that the antics (pranks among the residents, chiefly) aren’t really anything new. I got all optimistic when it seemed like he was going to steal Kozue away from Godai, since that’d be a tidy ending to their relationship and one in which she wouldn’t end up hurt. Alas, it was not to be. As soon as Godai determined to warn her away from the dense Nozomu, I knew what would happen.

Still, Maison Ikkoku earns points for simple charm alone. Plus, the gradual thawing of Kyoko’s heart makes me happy. I’ve past the halfway point now, so things should begin moving soon!

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