I'm just like Ataru in that I adore all of the girls. I can't make up my mind; Lum, Ran, Ryoko, Benten, Shinobu, Oyuki, Kurama, Sakura, Asuka...(even Sugar, Ginger and Pepper in some weird way). I could do a gallery on any one of these girls, but I feel there is a need for a page dedicated to the one who is probably my favorite female Urusei Yatsura character. Takahashi's original cross-dressing martial artist, mistress of the sacred sarashi, Ryuunosuke Fujinami.
Take note that this isn't a shrine. It's a tribute. (yeah I know, it's just semantics but it's still a tribute). This is a page meant to show my appreciation for what I see as one of the more interesting, yet underappreciated characters in the series.
I've always liked strong women and Ryuu-chan has power to spare. She has a the graceful piston-like moves of a wing-chun kung-fu master combined with the rough demenor of a high school gang leader. But with all of her tough exterior, she's a down to earth person with a heart of gold (now there's a cliché for ya). There's an appealing cool attitude and confidence about her that most anime girls lack, yet at the same time she's quite insecure and naive about herself and her lack of femininity which makes her more human. I also think she's a good looker. I don't care what people say, she looks very female to me, just not very feminine. Most of all she adds a whole new demension to the humor in Urusei Yatsura with the daily troubles her male affliction gives her. The classic battle of the sexes rages on in a single vessel named Ryuunosuke.
She also kicks ass like nobody's business. While she isn't at the superhuman levels of the characters in Ranma ½, she holds her own pretty well. There's just something about violent, tempermental females that I like. You could argue that all of the UY girls are violent and that's very true. It's just the way that Ryuu-chan goes about it that always cracks me up. I think it's funny that the strongest and most skilled, honourable, charismatic and virtuous man in the entire cast is actually a woman.
Many of my personal favorite manga stories feature Ryuunosuke and her father in some way. While I love the manga rendition of Ryuunosuke, I must say that I've sometimes been disappointed with the animated version of her character. After reading enough stories of the later half of the manga's run, you can tell that Ryuunosuke had become one of Takahashi's most favored characters. This affection for her creation really shone through in the manga and pretty early on after her introduction, Ryuunosuke became the 6th most important character (with Lum, Ataru, Shinobu, Ten and Mendo filling out the other 5). However the anime is quite the opposite. As the animators rewrote many episodes and created new stories, Ryuunosuke was often demoted to the position of a background character. A perfect example is the UY movies. Notice how much of an insignificant character she is in the movies? It was the same with the TV show. The staff of the anime didn't seem to understand how to use her properly without getting all emotionally weighed down in the tragic side of such a character. So it appears they wouldn't utilise her character as much as Takahashi had intended. When they did use her, her they sometimes did a pretty shoddy job of it and instead of being funny, she became annoying and mopey. But it's not all bad. Thankfully Mayumi Tanaka's voice talents help to keep Ryuunosuke entertaining despite the subpar use of her character.
I've created a few pages with some goodies for other Ryuunosuke fans as well as an assortment of scans from the manga. Check them out below.
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