Ranma ½ Milestones-
Over Ten Years and 100,000 Hits
December 12, 2001
I felt today would be a good day to post some of the things I've been
collecting over the past few months. Today Perfect Edition hit 100,000
hits after three years, five months, and seven days and I'm in a bit
of a reflective mood. The series is approaching it's eleventh anniversary
as a manga published in English and the anime, as it draws closer
to it's final episode, has reached eight years just this month.
In the Beginning...
I've been following Ranma ½ for many, many years now. Since
I was in 7th grade as a matter of fact. Now I'm halfway through my
junior year of undergraduate school, and I can scarcely remember a
time when Ranma ½ wasn't a part of my life.
I've collected information out of habit, and this website provided
a forum for me to share it with other fans. The title, Perfect Edition,
was suggested by my brother who adapted it from the first domestic
Urusei Yatsura graphic novel "Perfect Collection". I'll admit
I felt a little brash naming a site "Perfect Edition" when it certainly
wasn't the best at that time... but I knew that it would be. I can
still remember the early days of the site attracting a few hits each
day. It was a very different page, with a dark black background, and
as many different font colors as there were pages. I certainly wasn't
knowledgable with HTML and relied heavily on Microsoft Office to help
me code the pages. I still remember the first criticism I recieved
about the site from a Japanese messageboard... "fix the background."
I Set Goals...
I knew from the beginning that I wasn't going to fall into the
same pits that other Ranma ½ sites had. I saw all too many
that had links to their friends sites, or discussed a multitude
of other anime series. One that still sticks out in my mind was
one of the former major Ranma sites that asked no one to e-mail
them with "stupid questions" because their e-mail would be promptly
deleted. Seeing sites like that helped me mold the ideas that would
go into Perfect Edition. No stupid question would be ignored, was
my cardinal rule. In fact, I can honestly say I've responded to
every e-mail I received, even if I've answered the question somewhere
in the site.
Another aspect that I saw all too often was an utter digust with
Viz, Ranma's parent company. Harsh judgements on manga and anime
translation, and cruel comments on the English dub showed me that
to have a truly great site, I would have to give credit where credit
is due. Viz and the Ocean Group do an outstanding job on the series,
just as Kitty and the Japanese actors do. Without Viz, most of Ranma's
critics would never have heard of the series even if they hate to
admit it. They all deserve credit for their many, many years of
hard work and I hope this site promotes the people behind the voices,
no matter what language they may speak.
Keeping the site current was another important step. I've seen too
many Ranma sites that say something such as "Last Update: May 1997".
95 percent of Ranma sites have become decayed with ancient information
and lack of updates. So I strove to update at least once a week,
and slowly but surely it helped bring in regulars to my site to
see what was new.
So I set goals. I would find another Ranma site and vow that I would
make mine better. Occasionally I would hear from other Ranma webmasters
and that would tell me I was doing my job. After that I would look
for another site to entice me to raise the bar. At times it almost
felt like the back and forth training Ranma and Ryoga do to improve
themseleves. Of course I never told the other webmasters I was doing
And finally, I decided to attempt my first tough goal- getting listed
as a General Information site on the Anime Web Turnpike. Every other
site that I saw as my real competition held a position in that section,
and I set out towards getting listed there as well. It took many
months of submitting and redesigning. But I finally achieved that
goal on August 22, 2000 and felt I had truly entered the "big leagues"
of Ranma sites. Now all I had to do was become the best...
And Then Went One Step Farther...
I knew just having character profiles and manga summaries wasn't going
to make Perfect Edition stand out, so I had to find something that
no one else had. The first "scoop" I felt I had were my anime summaries
that I wrote for episodes that had not been released domestically.
From that point I set up my music section, which I am very proud of
due to the somewhat difficult nature of cataloging the Ranma ½
discography. My favorite section, Cultural Notes sprung up from my
need to know more about the basis of some of the characters and storylines
featured in the series. Most recently the Oddities section proved
to be my crowning jewel with it deleted storyboards. Finally I was
able to actually discuss Ranma with the main figure behind it's domestic
release- Mr. Toshifumi Yoshida. Mr. Yoshida has been kind enough to
share news on the series with me over the past few months, and I deeply
appreicate the time he has taken to communicate with me.
Once I posted those I finally felt secure about my website's standing
in the Ranma community.
There Are Always Regrets...
I always disliked the way the Ranma ½ online community was
structured. I saw a lot of arguing over small things (English dubs,
Ranma's hair color, etc.), or a general lack of understanding on some
of the aspects. Overall I felt it was a somewhat negative coummunity
when compared to that of other anime fans'.
Sadly in the days of anime on major broadcast networks and cable,
Ranma has taken a bit of a backseat to other series. Certainly the
series has been around for a long time, 14 years in Japan and 11 years
here. Considering that it's still an incredibly popular show, but
even the most optimistic person can tell from the abondoned sites
and dwindling fan community that Ranma has seen it's heyday.
But In the End, It's Here to Stay.
But against all odds Ranma ½ has never fallen from the Top
Ten Anime Series listed on the Anime Web Turnpike. It has been an
amazingly popular series, and was always Viz's bestseller until Dragonball
Just in the past year I've added a messageboard that helped me get
in touch with a lot of great fans that truly love the series. They've
proven to be very knowledgable and go a long way toward erasing my
earlier thoughts about some of the less courteous fans. They're all
class-acts and encourage me to make the site that much better. I also
moved off of my longtime home at Geocities for a full domain that
I actually own. It has been a very good year for this site, and I
can only hope for many more like this.
So in conclusion I have no doubt in my mind though that, along with
the work of Ryoichi Ikegami, Rumiko Takahashi established manga in
America. She has made it a viable market here, in no small part thanks
to the extraordinary success of Ranma ½ and the hard work of
the people at Viz, Shogakukan, the Ocean Group, and you, the fans.
I cannot thank all of you enough for your continued interest in this
site and this series, please keep coming back, and I can promise to
do my best to provide you with the most detailed and up-to-date information.
My heart is filled with pride and here's to a great ten plus
years of excellent storytelling and beautiful artwork. I can only
hope for another ten.
Ranma ½ Perfect Edition