Sunday, July 29, 2007

Police in the Ranmaverse

I've seen people mention in various places that there are no police in the Ranmaverse. In my opinion there is a police force in the Ranmaverse whether you go by manga or anime canon. We see Ryoga stop at a police box and ask for directions to the Tendo dojo, the forgetful boy Shinnosuke dresses as a police woman, and Ranma comments that he should call the police on Ryoga for sibling abuse after Ranma pretended to be Ryoga's sister Yoiko are just a few times they are mentioned.

Following is speculation:
Depending on the nature of the crime/problem the police may not be the ones you'd call. It is demonstrated repeatedly that the Tendo Dojo gets called to deal with monsters/supernatural things. If you live in the Ranmaverse and have a supernatural problem you go to a martial artist or a priest not to a police officer.

Why don't the police come and arrest Ranma and company for the various crimes committed? Not really that hard to explain. First lets deal with the more serious crimes: murder attempts and kidnappings in the manga. The reason the police don't get involved in those is fairly simple, they are never reported. Ranma and the other martial artists rather deal with those things themselves and would not report them to the police. Also the Japanese have a different view on police than the west. The West (USA in particular) has many lawyers (more than a million in the USA), the Japanese have less than 50,000. The Japanese do not like going to the police except as a last resort.

Many crimes have also passed the statute of limitations. Genma can't be arrested for stealing Ukyo's cart because too much time has passed.

Why hasn't Happosai been arrested? Can you see any police force consisting of regular people in the world being able to catch Happosai if he didn't want to be caught or managing to keep him imprisoned if they did catch him (possibly by using female cops). Besides that point, Panty theft is not exactly high priority and there have been attempts to stop him. An association in Japan that would be similar to a US Neighborhood watch goes and asks the Tendos to stop the panty thief as well as the niku-men (bald men who wanted the dragon whisker) in the manga. The people with the responsibility for stopping Happosai are also the people he is living with, the vast majority of the people in the Ranmaverse probably don't know that Happosai lives there (the Tendo's and Saotome's would deny having anything to do with him).

Property damage why aren't they arrested for that. Like the other things this isn't all that hard to explain. First off the damage is often exaggerated in fan fiction. The most damaging battles were done out in the wilderness (breaking point fight, Herb battle, Saffron battle, etc.) or had no witnesses (Ryu battle). The next most common battles are prearranged with seating for bystandards even set up - martial arts dining, cheerleading, ice skating, Ukyo's battle versus Ranma, rhythmic gymnastics, ki blast battle, etc., in which some damage would be expected. Even in those cases the damage is usually confined take the ki blast battle between Ranma and Ryoga, for example, the damage done was confined to a soccer field. After that the most damage occurs at the Tendo's house followed by the school. Tendo's wouldn't report it as for the school who knows Principal Kuno may just not want the cops looking in on how he's running the place.

As for Ranma being arrested for property damage remember most of the damage caused by Ranma is usually done in self defense or from someone slamming him through a wall by people who don't stick around (like Ryoga, Taro, etc.). Many of the people who might be arrested don't stick around, they leave the area (and some the country - like Taro). Another reason it wouldn't be reported is quite simple, abilities like Ranma's are not very common we are shown this several times in the manga, so who would believe you if you did report it if they didn't see it themselves. Imagine trying to report these: "Hello police a girl just shy of being 5 foot tall just punched my wall down", or "Hello I'd like to report a battle between a Hindu goddess and a huge flying monster with tentacles. No this is not a prank. No I'm not on drugs. Of course I'm not insane a Hindu goddess did strike my house with lightning".

Even if the police did come to investigate they don't have any proof (punching a wall to pieces doesn't leave much evidence behind as to who did it) and lets say they did send someone to the Tendo dojo. Does anyone there look like they are capable of tearing a building down with their bare hands? Imagine the scene. Police come to arrest Ranma and all they see is a cute little girl who looks completely defenseless and like she's about to cry (Ranma would be acting and has used this type of acting before). Also several cast members are fully capable of altering the memories of anyone sent to investigate. Happosai, Cologne, Shampoo, Ranma (he's used suggestion incense twice in the manga and may know more tricks), and possibly Genma (might or might not but considering he can disappear or turn into a Panda good luck finding him) and Kodachi (one of her drugs/poisons could probably do that) can all alter people's memories so they believe that someone else did it or they have the wrong people or something. The Kuno's appear to be rich enough to pay the police and such to look away from their offenses.

Many of the things ascribed to be legal matters in fan fiction are not. For example the various engagements. Those are not legal matters they are matters of honor. Legally nothing can really be done about them. As far as the law is concerned they don't exist since in Japan it is illegal to force someone to marry (happens anyways though).

Friday, July 27, 2007

More Translation Differences

During the Romeo and Juliet arc of the manga Ranma asks Genma who Romeo is.
Viz version: "He's from the planet Krypton" (i.e. reference to Superman)
French Version: "He's the son of his parents" (the obvious answer)
Chinese Version: "He was born from inside a peach tree."
Japanese (original version): "He was born from a peach"

The Chinese and the Japanese are referencing MomotarĊ, a character from a Japanese fairy tale who was found inside a giant peach floating in the river.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Things in Ranma fanfiction that really annoy me in no particular order:

  • Removing all character flaws without having the characters work to improve themselves. Ex. Akane or, even worse, Nabiki suddenly being great perfect people.
  • Ranma and chosen girl/s get together and it solves all relationship problems. Yeah right, Shampoo/Ukyo/Kodachi are going to give up just because Ranma married Akane/someone, does anyone see that as being the least bit believable? If anything things would get worse not better. Leaving out the other girls, things between Ranma and the girl won't automatically get better or be perfect. If Ranma ends up with multiple girls (wouldn't rule it out considering Ranma's life), the girls would still argue with one another and maybe team up against another girl or Ranma.
  • Establishing Ranma to be weaker/less powerful/etc., than his canon self and then giving Ranma a power boost that is below his canon abilities. Example Ranma is said to get much stronger through some means and can now lift a ton, Ranma in manga has lifted and even threw things that weighed more than that. This is just dumb to me, it shows that you either didn't know Ranma's abilities or you wanted to power up Ranma without powering up Ranma
  • Drastically dumbing a character down or increasing knowledge. For instance I've seen a fic in which Ranma didn't know basic addition as well as fics where Ranma knew advanced physics. Making Ranma knowledgeable in something not shown in the manga is all right but explain it in a believable way. For instance if you need Ranma to be knowledgeable in physics explain that his junior high science teacher showed him how knowing physics benefits his martial arts or something similar (There is nothing in manga that says he is not knowledgeable in physics). Whatever you do, do not use the excuse Ranma was pretending to be dumb, that is out of character for Ranma and don't make Ranma knowledgeable in things that he is shown to not be knowledgeable in (like Shakespeare and how the Jusenkyo Curse really works) or Akane suddenly knowing how to swim, cook, sew, etc.
  • Completely ignore established power scales, e.g. Ranma defeating Happosai without trickery/traps/etc., though if it's a crossover/fusion it doesn't bother as much since a balance state has to be achieved to tell the story. Example: if DBZ fusion ok to pump Ranma's abilities up to what is shown as the max for Humans from the get go just mention in an author's note or something that your doing that to balance the abilities and that is where Ranma would be had he been in the Dragonball universe - not to the level of Sayians.
  • Ranma with a guy. This can be done but is very difficult to do without me hating it.
  • Out of Character, unless it is explained as to why they are out of character this shouldn't be done, though realistically, since the stories are not being written by the original author, some ooc is unavoidable.
  • Having Ranma only have normal human abilities or pointlessly lowering his abilities. I really hate seeing things like Ranma being injured by a normal car. Though this can be done with out bothering me so long as it is done to all the characters or is required for the story (ex. of required Ranma/ Buffy crossover manga Ranma could defeat practically every villain shown with relative ease so his abilities i.e. strength, speed, etc., should be lowered until that is no longer the case but not so much so that he is the weakest thing there don't forget to take in the fact he does have many years of martial arts training which should be taken into consideration).
  • Super powered/Godlike Ranma. Truthfully, This doesn't bother me because in my opinion manga Ranma is already like that in many ways. He's a mid-teen and can hold his own against people with decades, possibly centuries, of experience, learns techniques at insane speeds (that surprise those people with those years of experience), is good at practically everything he tries to do (can cook, clean, sew, do repair work, martial arts, etc.) etc. The reason it's on this list is because a lot of the time the godlike is completely pointless serving no purpose other than making Ranma into a god-like being or is used to make some other character seem pathetic in comparison. If you do decide to make Ranma god-like, make damn sure you don't miraculously remove his faults in the process. Look at mythological gods they generally aren't faultless.
  • Crappy explanations as to why Ranma left Nerima or how he got rid of his other fiancees. If you can't think of or don't want to explain why Ranma left Nerima, or how Ranma ended up with so and so, don't bother doing so. Just start your fic wherever you want to. It is much better to not explain it, leaving it to the reader to imagine that part or give little clues throughout the fic that basically tell nothing but give some idea as to what might have happened, than to make them read a few chapters of crappy forced reasons that are only there so that you can get to the point where you can start your story.
  • I find it annoying for authors to tell at the very beginning of the fic who is going to be paired with who. If the match-up isn't important to the story it's okay to do this, but if it is the main draw of the fic, it is kind of taking away the drama. Do you really want to know before a story starts who is going to be paired up when there are several possible choices and that relationship is the main story line?
  • Character bashing should be avoided. It's okay to show characters in a negative light but completely demonizing characters who do have some redeeming qualities should not be done.
  • The excessive use of ya for you, ta for to, or truncating words. Hell the rendering of character's speech phonetically using nonstandard spellings in general (a bit is fine but too much is just annoying). They distract from the story (no one uses ya for you every single time). It is also not how Ranma talks in either the Viz or Japanese version of the manga, though the VIZ version does have him use some truncated words like didja but infrequently and generally when Ranma is angry (it is generally used in places where Ranma uses ruder language in the original Japanese). He was also not the only character to do so.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Learn Japanese with Ranma

The site titled Japanese Cyber Class teaches you some Japanese using characters from Ranma ½. It has a sections on P-chan explaining Japanese street address's, Ranma asking Akane out, Nabiki teaching you how to ask for someone's wallet, and Ryoga and Sailor Uranus (from Sailormoon) introducing themselves. The picture was taken from the site.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Cameo in Here is Greenwood

Ranma's female form has a cameo appearance in one of the episodes of Here is Greenwood. Here is Greenwood is a 6 episode Oav by the same director as the Ranma ½ anime.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Year the Ranma manga takes place

Going by evidence found in the manga the year where everything happens is 1994. A calender at Ryoga's house has the date printed and clearly says 1994 (pictured above). The reason the calender is shown is because Ryoga is using a means of divination somewhat similar to numerology called rokuyo (more on this can be found at this site: ROKUYO – Lucky and Unlucky Days in Japan). There is other evidence of it being mid 90's for example: the Aloha virus was said to have contaminated the island according to a diary Ranma finds on July 23rd, 1990 and a ten yen coin dated Heisei year 6 shows up enlarged several times - Heisei year 6 = 1994.

There is on other major thing that points to it being 1994, in 1995 the legal marriage age changed, under the new laws Ranma would have to be at least 18 to marry Akane.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Ranma/Hellsing/other crossover idea

I was reading Black Dragon's story millennium and this idea popped into my head.

Having a real enemy for Ranma provides purpose as well as motivation. Ranma's abilities will be based on high end feats in the manga. Ranma will learn new techniques, copy techniques he seen (especially if he's seen them often meaning he will definitely know breaking point, Happosai firework technique, and hidden weapons) as well as improve existing ones (new variations on ki blast, hiryu shoten ha, etc.). He will also use magical items. Some would think that this is making Ranma god-like I don't really see it that way, in my opinion this isn't making him anymore god-like than he was in the manga.

Ranma 3 months post manga just started 11th grade (age of Ranma for the fic would be 16 since Ranma's age is not said until mushrooms of aging story arc and he says that he'll lose 1 year instead of saying 3 months or something like that I'm assuming that Ranma turned 16 shortly before that story arc).

As of yet unnamed and unwritten Ranma/Hellsing/other crossover (considering all the thought I put into this idea I hope I do write it, instead of getting fed up and quitting like I've done with all the stories I started in the past)

Only thing taken from Hellsing is the vampires. The other hasn't been decided or known yet and may end up being an original character. I want to set Ranma up with a girl who is nicer than his fiancee's and can help him but also won't get in his way/distract him while he's fighting. The reason I feel a need to add a girl to this is to help balance the fic out. I don't want this to be an all dark angst depressing fic. The Ranma cast don't really fit with what I'm looking for. I'm not exactly sure what I'm looking for in the girl. She has to be someone who Ranma can talk to and trust. A person who he can open up to without fear of what he tells her being used against him later (though the opening up part will be slow going since Ranma doesn't really tell anyone anything unless he has to and for good reason)and who shows that she trusts him. I don't want her to be helpless (leads to lois lane syndrome, e.g. superman help), I also don't want her to be too powerful (no point in Ranma's battles if she can simply defeat the beings he's fighting). I'd like her to help him accept his female form, show him that the way the people around him treat him is not normal (e.g. hitting him, using him as a scape goat, blackmailing him, etc.), and for her to have little modesty around Ranma figuring there is no point to it since he's not only seen everything, he has everything she does. Little modesty part is so I can use her flashing, mooning him, etc., as part of his training. In the manga Ranma is far to easily distracted in fights which could lead him to getting killed, look at the manga the reason Mariko knocked him out was because he was to busy denying his love of Akane to pay attention to her, the reason Kuno was able to hit him was because he was looking at pictures instead of paying attention to Kuno, and he was too busy arguing with Akane to pay attention to Ryoga almost getting Akane killed. Also she won't live in Nerima she'll be someone/somewhere Ranma goes when he wants to get away from Nerima for a little bit and Ranma will have an easier time opening up to her because he won't see her as a love interest just a friend.

Here's the main fic idea the part with the girl would be a subplot.

People are being slaughtered in Tokyo. Ranma's nature is to help people if he can so he isn't about to stand idly by while people are being killed. Ranma manages to find the killer, who happens to be a vampire of the Hellsing universe variety. Doesn't know it's a vampire thinks it is just a martial artist who's gone serial killer though Ranma's danger sense is going crazy. Ranma's normal fighting style and lack of knowledge on how to fight vampires (as well as not knowing it is a vampire) causes Ranma to make several mistakes that are in character for him. First he's going to underestimate the vampires abilities (strength, speed, durability). Second he's going to try and take down the vampire without killing or maiming it. Thirdly he's going to be wasting time and energy showing off, taunting it, and playing with it. Suffice it to say Ranma's not going to win this confrontation but will manage to get away.

Genma and Ranma will have a talk about the fight. Genma is going to tell Ranma that there are times when you have to kill. This person has gone to far and slaughtered people. The police won't be able to keep him arrested. Genma will make the decision to give Ranma some scrolls containing the Umisenken and Yamasenken (with new stuff added since he had made the original one Ryu had). Mentions that Ranma can be trusted to use them responsibly.

Next confrontation with the Vampire; Ranma is a lot more serious doesn't taunt or play with it. Even though Ranma knows intellectually that he has to kill it (a hard choice that Ranma spends considerable time thinking about his options ultimately agrees with Genma that the murderer has to be taken down) he is still reluctant to kill it and still holds back (e.g. doesn't use Yamasenken techniques or other ki techniques) and gives the vampire a fair chance (e.g. doesn't try to sniper it, sneak attack it, use explosives, etc.). Ranma loses this battle as well though he does manage to escape.

Next confrontation: Ranma is learning from his mistakes so this time he goes in hard and fast using techniques that should kill anything human. He again makes the mistake of giving the vampire a sporting chance i.e. no sneak attack, sniper attack, etc. This is where Ranma learns that it's not human though he still doesn't know that it is a vampire. Having used techniques that should have killed anything human Ranma is completely caught off guard when it doesn't die and retaliates. Since he is caught off guard the vampire is going to hurt Ranma enough that Ranma is going to have to run away again.

After the last fight the Vampire is going to start seeing Ranma as a real threat as opposed to an interesting diversion. Ranma of course is getting pretty fed up he lost against this opponent 3 times as well as angry at himself for not taking down this mass murder as well as feeling guilty for the deaths he didn't prevent. He's also a little afraid but his fear is over shadowed by his guilt and anger.

Next confrontation Ranma is no longer going to give it anything like a fair fight. Sneak attack knives in every vital place on a human followed by using techniques that tear the vampire into little pieces. Ranma is pretty damn sure that that is going to kill it. This being a fairly powerful vampire with the ability to regenerate similar to Alucard's. It doesn't die. While Ranma is watching the pile of blood and pieces of flesh (Ranma is being cautious) he is attacked by a ghoul. This is where Ranma first encounters the Ghouls. A regenerating monster of some type is one thing a small army of zombies is another thing entirely. Ranma fights the ghouls kicking the crap out of them a small army of unarmed zombies isn't going to be able to stop Ranma but it will freak him out and give the vampire time to regenerate and surprise attack Ranma. Ranma is forced to flee yet again.

Ranma goes to Cologne for help. Would have gone earlier but she had to return to China for some reason I haven't come up with yet. Cologne recognizes the being as a vampire by Ranma's descriptions of it and helps Ranma by giving him some magical items to help in his fight (dragon scale armor similar to the armor occasionally worn by Shampoo and the armor worn by Herb, a magical weapon that could hurt it more than physical attacks can - mentions that silver could be used but silver doesn't really make good weapons and that blessed objects could work as well but you have to have faith or the deities blessing for them to work). Amazons have had dealings with vampires before though not in recent years (as in the last century).

That's all I have for an idea so far. Not completely thought out. Other things that probably would happen would be Ranma stealing all the magic things and books Happosai's got. Using water proof soap as a means to control his curse. Training to get better. Seeking out magical items and stealing them or using his feminine charms to get. Ranma reading in libraries on thing like Combat tactics, History, Strategy, Forensics, Psychology, More myth and lore, and other things that he thinks will be of use or someone else suggest to make him better at fighting Vampires. Eventually having a run in with vampires who use modern weaponry.

------------------------------------------ added later

Having just reread this idea it occurs to me that I had made Ranma choose to kill the vampire too quickly. It maybe true that the police would be incapable of keeping a martial artist of the vampire's abilities that Ranma just sees as a psycho incarcerated. Ranma is much more likely to maim the killer than try for a kill so I'll probably end up changing that to Ranma accidentally using a technique that would/should kill a human while trying to maim the vampire after all the police should be able to keep a sufficiently maimed martial artist incarcerated.

************************************* added even later
Still thinking and expanding this idea. It occurs to me that the girl in this fic could be Hotaru (sailor Saturn). While I'd usually consider her to be too powerful (planet destroying) it could work. She has experience fighting inhuman creatures. While she is powerful she, at least for this fic, can be forced to not use her silence glaive surprise attack by having the villain use innocents people around him i.e. as shields and she's not going to destroy the world (to many deaths and where would she live). She doesn't have the speed or strength to get right up and fight in close combat nor the skill (at least not against these opponents her speed and strength would be boosted in senshi form but I figure closer to Akane's level rather than Ranma's judging by anime senshi). Her healing ability would be very useful as well as her ability to create a shield. The shield would mean that Ranma doesn't have to worry about her and that she can shield innocent by standards allowing Ranma not to worry about them. Also if all else fails she can just nuke the entire area but would be a last resort type thing.

While mowing the lawn and thinking about this fic it came to me that I have a problem that I'm unsure of how to solve. Problem being how do I keep the other cast members out of the fights? Sure one or two fights is easy enough to explain but eventually the others will join in or go hunting by themselves. I don't want that. The other cast members could be extremely helpful heck Akane could even take on a bunch of the ghouls by herself. Happosai and Cologne have to be prevented from fighting because they are too powerful/skillful. The other Ranma cast members really aren't very good at working together so will get in each others way, would be distractions in the fight (Akane has been a distraction in several of his fights either because Ranma would be worrying about them, end up fighting them as well, or just get in his way), may see the fight as a way to get rid of one of the rivals without getting blamed for it (Shampoo tried this in manga), could be used as hostages/meat shields, and could be turned into vampires and used against him (this also happened sort of in the manga Akane's form was used by Kima and body was used by spirit doll).

If I choose Saturn as the girl then that brings in the other senshi. Which I also don't want getting in the fights. Sure they have better team work than the Ranma cast (the inners do at least outers not so good at team work), some of the reasons I don't want the Ranma cast involved are the same reason's I don't want the senshi involved, they suck at tactics (just look at their fights in the anime really poor tactics most of the time but since their enemies had poor tactics most of the time this didn't really matter killing Saturn was a real dumb move), their fighting style conflicts with Ranma's (Ranma is far more dangerous up close than from a distance and they are far more dangerous from a distance than up close), they rely more on power and number advantage than on skill (usually was multiple senshi versus one monster of the day with the monster of the day winning until Tuxedo Kamen showed up distracting the monster and giving Moon the time to do her big technique and kill it - her technique is not instantaneous Eudial was able to walk over to her van and take out her weapon while Sailormoon was readying/charging up her attack) against a sufficiently faster opponent like the vampires she won't have the time to power up her techniques before she is gutted unless she starts very far away.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Ranma vs Ryoga

Manga comparison since I prefer manga a lot more than I do the anime and they are much more even in the anime.

Skill - Ranma appears to be a lot more skilled than Ryoga. Example in skill difference Ryoga was fighting all out trying to kill (where as Ranma wasn't trying to kill) Ranma while Ranma was in his weaker, less skilled (as shown by Mousse battle mainly from lack of experience fighting as a girl) form and ignoring Ryoga in favor of arguing with Akane and Ryoga still didn't win.

Toughness - Ryoga is tougher than Ranma but not by an overly large degree. Ranma did take a massive punch by Ryoga into a mountain side causing the rocks to compress and has taken vacuum blades and still been able to fight.
Ranma and Ryoga toughness comparison done by obsidian fox on before site crash:

Toughness => Power => Equivalent Fight
1x => 1x => Soldier (3000W) vs. Soldier (3000W)
1.13x => 1.2x => Soldier (3000W) vs. Fit Male (2500 W)... it would hurt
1.3x => 1.5x => Soldier (3000W) vs. Avg. Male (2000W) (he could take a bunch of them)
1.5x => 2.0x => Soldier (3000W) vs. Unfit Male (1500W) (if he swings really hard, the soldier might even feel it.)
2x => 3x => Soldier (3000W) vs. debilitated old man who can barely walk up stairs (1000W). (Please go die somewhere else...)

So... if Ryouga is only 2x as tough as Ranma, he'd be able to ignore pretty much any blow that Ranma ever makes... even if Ranma made a lot of them. 2x is really the maximum one could place Ryouga's toughness over Ranma's. 1.5x is a truly plausible value for Ryouga's toughness boost. Much higher than 1.5, it wouldn't matter if Ranma threw 10 punches or 100. The most they'd ever do is cause light bruises.

However, on the other end, 1.3x toughness might be a little on the low-end for the boost, unless you consider toughness in other ways (e.g. extra endurance, pain resistance, etc.). With much lower toughness, Ryouga wouldn't be able to pretend those blows didn't hurt him.

Endurance - Ranma has shown to have more endurance (ability to keep going even though exhausted or hurt) than just about anyone in the manga (Toughness and endurance are not the same thing). Ranma was hurt by Mikado prior to fighting Ryoga and was capable of continuing. Ranma was capable of taking multiple ki blasts and keep going. Ranma starved himself for a week during the martial arts dining and was still capable of fighting.

Stamina - unable to determine though both have massive stamina. Both can fight for hours on end provided they don't use extremely draining techniques as seen during the rhythmic gymnastics training. Ryoga spend lots of time walking and Ranma swam the sea of Japan.

Intelligence - Ranma appears to be smarter than Ryoga and a lot less gullible. Ranma uses Ryoga's gullibility against him repeatedly.

Speed - Ranma is much faster than Ryoga.

Strength - Most people would expect me to say Ryoga and I will, Ryoga is stronger than female form Ranma. As for Ranma's male form it's unclear Ryoga could be stronger but it's also possible that Ranma is as strong or stronger.

We've never seen the full extent of either Ranma's or Ryoga's strength. Both are incredibly strong. Here are the arguments that I've heard people use to argue that Ryoga is stronger and my counters to them:

Argument: During Ranma's first fight with Ryoga someone said Ryoga is monstrously strong.
Reply: That was at a point in the manga that no one had seen what Ranma was capable of so their statement means nothing for determining their respective strengths. It does show that both Ranma and Ryoga are super humanly strong though.

Argument: Ryoga is stronger because he is able to wield an extremely heavy umbrella that Akane had trouble lifting.
Reply: The same umbrella Ranma's weaker girl form had no trouble lifting, swinging around with one hand, and jumping to a rooftop holding.

Argument: Ryoga accidentally destroys things with his strength therefore he must be stronger than Ranma who doesn't accidentally destroy things.
Reply: Ranma has accidentally destroyed things with his strength the boat that was going to be taken to China during volume 37 is one example. That doesn't prove that Ryoga is stronger than Ranma, it does show that Ryoga does not have as much control as Ranma does. People who are clearly much weaker than Ranma and Ryoga casually destroy property as well (Kuno with his sword, Akane when she is angry, and Shampoo just likes doing so as a show of strength).

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Ranma's Intelligence

Manga Ranma is very intelligent, far more than many people credit him as being; judging by fan fiction.

Ranma's largest problem is that he is a live in the moment type person, which is both a good thing and a bad thing. It's good because he does not dwell on his problems, like Ryoga does, but a couple of consequence from being a live in the moment type person are shortsightedness (does not plan far enough in advance/think things through enough/come up with contingency plans) and impatience (which leads to him to doing things like trying to sneak into the girls changing room instead of waiting until after school).

He has displayed a high level learning ability judging by how fast he learned the Umisenken (Genma only showed him once), Cologne's surprise that he was able to learn the Hiryu Shoten Ha as fast as he did, and he has learned entire schools of martial arts over night (Martial Arts Tea Ceremony). This is even commented on in the manga, Akane for instance does so at the beginning of the Romeo and Juliet arc.

Ranma's manga incarnation appears to be doing fairly well in school even though he has missed at the very least a few months of school (time in China), missed part of that year (school started several weeks earlier), and will skip school (skipped it to go on trip with Happosai, Genma, and Soun during the Konatsu story arc for example). Another thing that shows that Ranma isn't doing all that bad in school, at least in the manga, is that Ranma wasn't worried about Principal Kuno showing Ranma's grade to everyone which implies that Ranma does not generally get bad grades or he really doesn't care about them (a view point that is countered by Ranma's actions when Principal Kuno implied they were extremely low). Ranma was also happy with his grade when it was shown on CMN news meaning it wasn't that bad a grade. Since Ranma does care about how people view him, for him to get very bad grades would be out of character because it would make him look stupid. For those who say that Genma wasn't happy with his grade my view is that Genma was upset about allowing Principal Kuno to put the grades on television (i.e. that Ranma let Principal Kuno get one over Ranma). Miss Hinako doesn't really attempt to get him to improve, she tries to get him to take school seriously and conform.

Ranma is fairly cultured though uncivilized and tends to ignore social conventions though he is aware of them and uses them on occasion when he feels a reason to do so. He did write, direct, and star in a play of his own making to try and get Happosai to change Pantyhose Taro's name. He does display knowledge in other fields besides martial arts such as cooking, sewing, first aid, repair work, CPR, cleaning, designing, etc., and can usually be counted on to know at least something helpful on just about anything. He is generally the person who comes up with a solution or figures things out, examples: figured out that Tatewaki Kuno was the principals son before anyone, figured out the source of Rouge's (the Ashura's) power, figured out that the cursed spatula was actually an iron, saw through Principal Kuno's and Gosunkugi's disguises, etc.

Ranma is very good at making new tactics, copying techniques, developing counters, and discovering a person's weakness. He even had stated that using a technique against him multiple times is pointless. (Happosai used pipe throwing technique; Ranma reversed it throwing Happosai instead.) If you have a weakness of any type Ranma will figure it out and use it against you.

People say Ranma is stupid because he didn't think to jump into the spring to cure his curse but when you consider that no one else has managed to cure their curses it is quite likely that part of the curse is an inability to cure yourself of it. Meaning a cursed individual would not think of that as a possibility until after it is no longer an option. The guide did not appear to know of a cure to the curse at that time Ranma was cursed (or at least did not know of its location). That is one possible reason for him to take Ranma and Genma to Shampoo's village. If the guide did know the location of the cure he probably would have given it to them. The real reason, of course, is much simpler; Takahashi wanted Ranma to be cursed for plot reasons and likely had not thought up a cure until later when she decided that it could also be used for a story arc.

As for Ranma not knowing what Romeo and Juliet is (another thing I've heard people use to say Ranma is stupid). This is not an example of stupidity; it is an example of ignorance. Ranma has spent most of his life training, though he did go to school as well, and just did not learn about it. He was also not the only character that did not know it, Tatewaki Kuno, Gosunkugi, and Happosai were also unfamiliar with it. This is no worse than people around the world not knowing the Tales of Genji (An extremely important and well known Japanese work of literature that every Japanese person knows about and is required reading in Japanese middle schools).

Ranma's inability to play cards in one arc was a result of PIS (plot induced stupidity). That arc was filled with PIS (and is in my opinion the worst arc in the entire manga). He can be seen playing cards with his classmates and not losing at various stages of the manga, both before and after that story arc.

As for Ranma not remembering or thinking about whether he had a mother, remember in the Manga, Ranma was taken from her before he could even walk and almost everyone he knows is motherless (Tendo's, Kuno's, Ukyo, and Shampoo). He most likely just assumed she was dead.

As clarification this post is about Ranma's intelligence not really on how knowledgeable he is. For some reason, I often see people think intelligence and knowledge are the same thing, they are not. You can be intelligent and not overly knowledgeable, they are not mutually exclusive. Ranma has shown to be plenty intelligent but he lacks knowledge (as well as patience) in a few things people take for granted (interpersonal skills in romantic situations mainly). He is a teenager, were he not fictional and capable of maturing, he would gain knowledge and experience which would better enable him to utilize his intelligence.

In my opinion, Ranma is a martial arts nerd that is not overly interested in many other things. He is also pretty pragmatic. The point of the last two sentences is that things like popular culture do not really interest him and he will happily learn anything that has to do with martial arts or that he can see has a practical advantage in knowing e.g. learning the names of every past ruler of Japan or all the baseball teams would be viewed as a pointless waste of time since he'd see no practical purpose for that knowledge and it has nothing to do with martial arts but if it relates to martial arts or he sees a practical purpose in acquiring the skill/knowledge he will happily do so.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Identifying Ranma Cells

This website has many cells from the Ranma anime as well as tells what clothing was worn by which character when

Friday, July 6, 2007

Ranma's Physical strength

Ranma is incredibly strong many times stronger than a normal human. We've never seen Ranma push himself to his limit strength wise and there is no way to tell how strong he really is. Ranma's male form is stronger than his female form how much so is unknown. Some feats for female form Ranma are throwing multi-ton ice blocks around, punching multi-ton boulders shattering them, pushing a roughly 70-ton boulder into the mouth of the Yamata-Orochi underwater, and supporting pressure Ryoga exerted on two enormous floating slabs of ice with an approximate total weight of roughly 250 to 700 metric tons when Ryoga was standing on her head (weight was determined by someone on wikipedia, By comparing with the almost 2m tall 'tiny' Mikado, with an estimated total weight of between 1.5m*8m*25m*917kg/m^3=275*10^3kg and 2.5m*10m*30m*917kg/m^3=687*10^3kg.).

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Ranma's an alien

The title of this post is a bit misleading. Ranma is human (born of a human mother and father) but he is still alien. How so? He is so different from regular humans (even in his own universe not just real life) that he may as well be an alien. Heck aliens on other shows like Star Trek and Sailor moon are closer to being human than he is.

One thing that sets Ranma apart from normal baseline humans is his super human abilities. Some examples of his super human abilities are: super strength (lifts multiple tons, bend steel pipe), toughness (hits wall hard enough to leave massive creator gets up like nothing happened), speed (moves faster than the human eye can track when he wants to), abilities (can scratch his own mid back with his foot, cling to ceilings, can cut things with his bare hands - cut perfect hole in Ryoga's house bare handed), stamina (swam the sea of Japan), energy manipulation (ki blasts), danger sense (senses danger before it occurs), incredibly fast healing rate, etc. We are shown that these abilities are very uncommon in the Ranmaverse several times. Some examples of people being surprised by the martial artists displays of super human abilities are: School kids surprised girl form Ranma can lift and jump with Ryoga's extremely heavy umbrella , school kids thinking that a mere three story fall would kill Ranma, the martial arts ice skaters surprised that Ranma survived the attack much less was able to continue fighting, people running in fear when Happosai fights Ranma or when Happosai and Genma made themselves huge, Kodachi, Akane, and Asuka surprised at the speed Ranma heals, etc., I can list more.

Another thing that sets Ranma apart from the baseline humans of his universe is that Ranma has developed, because of his upbringing, quite a few abilities/habits that could be considered primitive or sub-human. When his fear of cats becomes too strong he acts like a cat (a super cat that can cut through basically anything with its claws and used a multi-ton shark as a chew toy). He has been shown to howl at the moon (did this in battle dogi story - arc surprisingly he wasn't in neko-ken - Kasumi said that at least it was scaring the cats away), yells into the night, sleeps in trees, eating while crouching on the table, using his feet to grip/hold things (we've seen him hanging upside down from his toes, write with his feet, scratch the back of his head/mid-back with his feet while reading, and feed himself with his feet in manga), jumping up and clinging to the ceiling when surprised, lack of modesty (such as him not caring where and who sees him nude), etc.

There are other things as well that set Ranma apart from normal humans. Ranma often sits in weird positions (meditating upside down, sitting on someone's head, hanging from the ceiling). Strange, at least to most people, thought patterns or seeing things that aren't normal as being normal. Ranma is likely to consider a lot of things as being normal that aren't, such as people trying to kill him, people kidnapping people to get stuff, and having a large number of nightmares. Inability to understand regular peoples view points because it is so different from his own (for instance he has a very different view on females than guys his age), etc.

If the Ranma series had continued, Ranma would have become further and further away from normal humans. My reasoning is fairly simple. As Ranma's knowledge of martial arts, ki, and magic grows he would grow further and further from baseline humans. Before the manga started he didn't even know about magic by the end of the manga Ranma has used magical items more than a dozen times and has had magic used on him even more times than that. It's only a matter of time until he actively starts learning how to use and control magic if for no other reason than self defense. He also has been seeking magical items to cure his curse and for power (Dogi). Ranma's knowledge and ki abilities have grown massively as well, at the start of the manga Ranma did not know how to project his ki at all. As the series progressed he learned new techniques and then improved every single one. We never see him do techniques the same way as he did them before every time we saw a technique it was a new variation (Shi Shi Hadoken became Moko Takabisha became Moko Takabisha double). In all probability Ranma would continue to do so.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Apologies in Ranma manga

I found a list of times people in the Ranma ½ manga apologize or feel guilty at: Ranma Apologies. I found it to be fairly interesting even though it is incomplete and contains several spelling errors. I had considered making my own list but decided not to since that would require me to go through each volume and write down every guilty feeling and apology. I really don't feel like doing that.

I find it interesting that Ranma apologizes for things that are not his fault and apologizes when he doesn't even know why he should apologize. I've heard people call Ranma a self centered, uncaring person. If that were true Ranma would not apologize for anything, especially things that were not his fault or for the express purpose of making someone happy.

Some forgotten ones I can remember off the top of my head are:
  • Ranma apologizes for not telling the Tendo's about his curse when he first showed up (He didn't know how to tell them, after all how would you go about explaining that your really a guy with a curse).
  • Ranma was going to Akane's room to apologize to Akane in the first volume until he heard her say that she's engaged to her worst nightmare.
  • Ranma apologizes to Kasumi for almost jumping on her when he jumped down the steps and almost landed on her.
  • Ryoga apologizes as well as Ranma for cutting of Akanes hair.
  • Ranma felt guilty for hurting Ryoga with the Hiryu Shoten Ha.
  • Not an apology, but should be on the list when Shampoo jumps into the bath with Ranma he was trying to think of a way to tell Akane that he isn't going to apologize to her every time she is upset.
  • The two kids who thought Happosai was Santa Claus feel guilty for bothering Happosai.
  • Everyone feels guilty because Happosai is so sick he drops his rejuvenation potion so they mop it up and give it to him.
  • Volume 20 had an entire story about apologizing. (Kuno destroyed Kodachi's pictures of Ranma so she steals his pictures and spreads doctored photo's of Kuno. She'll give back the pictures and stop spreading doctored photo's if Kuno apologizes. Ranma ends up knocking kuno out and use's Kuno like a puppet to apologize to Kodachi).
  • Ranma apologizes to a duck he thinks is Akane cursed by Mousse for allowing Mousse to turn her into a duck.
Some that I feel should have more context added to them or changed:
  • Ranma's apologies to Mousse in volume 27 were because of magical influence.
  • Happosai begins to regret giving Pantyhose Taro his name because Ranma used magic incense to make him more open to suggestion and staged an entire play that made it look like Pantyhose Taro stole all the pantyhose in the world.
I'd comment more but I'd need to look at the various manga to determine each one listed and whether it should be on the list or changed in someway.