How compatible could the (non-Akane) girls be with Ranma?

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How compatible could the (non-Akane) girls be with Ranma?

Postby SpaceKnight of Chaos » Mon Jan 20, 2020 5:46 am

When it comes to pairings, everybody knows Ranma 1/2 was always a case of Designated Official Couple: Rumiko Takakashi was adamant that Ranma would wed Akane, and, deliberately or not, went out of her way to present the other potential rivals in the most unflattering light she could in order to avoid another Lum situation. After all, Urusei Yatsura had originally been intended to be an Ataru/Shinobu pairing, and this is completely undeniable if you'd read the first volume (9 chapters) - there's literally a time travel story where they go 10 years into the future and discover that Lum has been chased off and Ataru & Shinobu are married with an infant son. But, despite this, many fans do find various other females in the Ranma 1/2 cast to be interesting, and even potentially shippable with our hero(ine).

Of course, shipping fics in particular have a tendency to get out of character, but I'm curious: are there ways to "twist" a given Ranma 1/2 girl's portrayal so that she's not completely out of character with regards to canon, but at the same time, she presents herself as a valid potential suitor for Ranma? What are your opinions on the subject?

I could go on quite the essay here, but I feel it would be rude. Instead, I'll just try to be pertinent with a single example: Nabiki Tendo. In canon, Nabiki cares nothing for Ranma and exploits him shamelessly for money and amusement. But, if you go back to the very first chapter of the very first volume, Nabiki is actually the only Tendo girl who is interested in being Ranma's potential fiancee. She is actively excited by the news of Ranma's coming, which the anime version emphasizes by having her dress up nicely in a formal kimono compared the manga's Nabiki staying in her original sleeveless top and short shorts - that's something that even the traditionalist Kasumi didn't do. Nabiki is the only Tendo girl who is so excited that she runs to meet Ranma when he arrives, and she's also the most obviously disappointed when Ranma turns out to be a girl.

With this in mind... I don't think it's implausible to portray Nabiki as secretly regretting pushing Ranma onto Akane from afar and trying to deny that regret once she gets to know him better and the curse stops being so freaky. Likewise, if Ranma had turned up in male form, Nabiki being the one to volunteer for the fiancee position seems sensible to me - and with her personality, I can see her trying a lot harder to "make it work" once the curse comes out, if only because she knows her father is never going to just agree to drop the whole engagement and so she's got to make the best of it.
Water, water, everywhere, and all was cursed and black!
Drowned ones cast bad spell and out come pig, girl, duck, panda!
Swirl, swirl, slithery pond, and join with magic spring!
Swirl, swirl, dirty pond, and rid the cursed sting!
Here my prayer, I beg you please!
Now turn these curses BACK!

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Re: How compatible could the (non-Akane) girls be with Ranma

Postby Spica75 » Mon Jan 20, 2020 9:14 am

Of course, shipping fics in particular have a tendency to get out of character, but I'm curious: are there ways to "twist" a given Ranma 1/2 girl's portrayal so that she's not completely out of character with regards to canon, but at the same time, she presents herself as a valid potential suitor for Ranma? What are your opinions on the subject?


Generally, i think Ukyo, Nabiki and Kasumi can be done without running away from canon completely.
Your scenario with Nabiki might feel a bit like a stretch, but it can still be made workable. And i can absolutely see it. And i've seen it written quite well several times.

Ukyo basically just needs a wakeup call, but if she gets that, gets over her "extremeness", she's possibly the most, or at least 2nd most realistic. Ranma is often more casual with her(this is where her being a potential confidante comes from), and she does show off at times that yes she DOES care beyond her own egocentrism, and there are hints suggesting she wouldn't actually need all that much to change(of course, other times she's almost as fanatical as Schampoo is at normal).
Bit surprised that this isn't actually written that often by fanfic writers.

Kasumi however is the one i would put as "best chance", simply because i've found that by far, the number of fanfics where she ends up with Ranma and that are realistic greatly outnumber what i've seen of any of the others. The number of ways it can happen, and how easily it can happen... The fanfic writers are quite frankly making a very good case for it.
Of course, that in some part is simply because she's the least developed of the nearby "main girls", but still.

The others are much harder to make sense of. Although i HAVE read one fic that got him together with Kodachi and it still MADE SENSE! Shocking, i know.
Schampoo though, i really don't get how many writers try to pass off a relationship between them as realistic, even despite the large number of fics written that pairs them, very few come even close to something that can be called "canon" versions of both characters and still get them together without severe author fiat. The one fic i saw that paired him with Cologne was more realistic. :mrgreen:
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Re: How compatible could the (non-Akane) girls be with Ranma

Postby slickrcbd » Mon Jan 20, 2020 2:32 pm

Spica75 wrote:Kasumi however is the one i would put as "best chance", simply because i've found that by far, the number of fanfics where she ends up with Ranma and that are realistic greatly outnumber what i've seen of any of the others. The number of ways it can happen, and how easily it can happen... The fanfic writers are quite frankly making a very good case for it.

The problem is that most of those stories were only a few chapters, then they pittered out. I recall the Church of Ranma and Kasumi sites, but they only had one finished fic and a couple of oneshot short stories.
There have been a few more since then, but it's a rare pairing for a finished fic.
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Re: How compatible could the (non-Akane) girls be with Ranma

Postby SpaceKnight of Chaos » Tue Jan 21, 2020 11:44 pm

Spica75 wrote:Schampoo though, i really don't get how many writers try to pass off a relationship between them as realistic, even despite the large number of fics written that pairs them, very few come even close to something that can be called "canon" versions of both characters and still get them together without severe author fiat. The one fic i saw that paired him with Cologne was more realistic. :mrgreen:

See, we disagree here; I feel Shampoo, despite fanon to the contrary and the obvious attempt by canon to sabotage her in order to avoid another Lum situation, is actually quite compatible with Ranma.

I mean, I understand why people bring up the bad first meeting they had, but, on the other hand, canonically, she stopped that as soon as the whole thing of Ranma not being a girl was cleared up to her, and if Ranma can so easily brush off all the physical, verbal and sometimes even emotional abuse that Akane throws at him like canon insists he does, I can see him brushing off Shampoo's pursuit the same way he brushed off Ryoga and Ukyo showing up wanting to bash his brains in.

Likewise, people complain that Ranma is "too moral" for Shampoo, but to that I have to point out two things. The first is that Ranma himself isn't exactly all that moral either. Particularly in the manga he's manipulative, he's deceitful, he's really willing to sink pretty much to low depths to get what he wants. I mean, Ranma in the anime is no saint either, but the manga version, like all the manga versions of characters, is much more of an asshole. Manga Ranma has tried to use "Flower of Womanhood" to cure Akane's tsundere nature and "womanly incompetence", tried to use a love potion to force Ryoga to fall in love with Akari, manipulated Ukyo's feelings for him to boost his own self esteem, and attempted to play on Akane's feelings to get her to give up the power-enhancing dress she was wearing because he was jealous of her (even if he did have an attack of conscience at the last moment). Secondly, Shampoo's status as "the most evil girl in Ranma 1/2" is more or less fanon. She talks big, yeah, but in the end, it's mostly shown as bluff. Remember how she made a big deal of giving Akane "the kiss of death", but instead simply wiped her memories of Ranma?

Shampoo shares a deep love of martial arts with Ranma. Of all the three fiancees, she could probably understand Ranma's life the best, since her upbringing in the remote Byankhalas is closest to it. She not only accepts Ranma's desire to be "the heroic male" figure, she actively respects it - it's shown in both the New Year's Ghost Cat story and the Pink & Link story that Shampoo actually finds the idea of being "the damsel in distress" to be a romantic notion, and would love for Ranma to be her knight in shining armor. She also has interests outside of martial arts - for example, she owns her own Super Famicom, which Ranma would find interesting. Despite fanon, she has no desire to "drag him back to China"; she would be more than happy to live in Japan with Ranma. She's unabashed in her affection for Ranma, willing to express that she cares for, trusts and respects him, which is something that Ranma doesn't get a lot of in canon. She's an excellent cook who enjoys cooking for Ranma. Despite fanon, she has no desire to control Ranma's future; so long as Ranma accepts her as his wife, she is happy to mold herself to suit Ranma's desires for a life.

Really, the one major problem Shampoo has is her curse, which triggers Ranma's ailurophobia. And she'd be more than happy to give that up if she had the choice.
Water, water, everywhere, and all was cursed and black!
Drowned ones cast bad spell and out come pig, girl, duck, panda!
Swirl, swirl, slithery pond, and join with magic spring!
Swirl, swirl, dirty pond, and rid the cursed sting!
Here my prayer, I beg you please!
Now turn these curses BACK!

http://www.issendai.com/rpgs/japanese-boys-names.shtml
http://www.issendai.com/rpgs/japanese-girls-names.shtml
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Re: How compatible could the (non-Akane) girls be with Ranma

Postby Spica75 » Fri Feb 28, 2020 4:25 pm

See, we disagree here; I feel Shampoo, despite fanon to the contrary and the obvious attempt by canon to sabotage her in order to avoid another Lum situation, is actually quite compatible with Ranma.


:shock:

HOW?

I mean, I understand why people bring up the bad first meeting they had, but, on the other hand, canonically, she stopped that as soon as the whole thing of Ranma not being a girl was cleared up to her, and if Ranma can so easily brush off all the physical, verbal and sometimes even emotional abuse that Akane throws at him like canon insists he does, I can see him brushing off Shampoo's pursuit the same way he brushed off Ryoga and Ukyo showing up wanting to bash his brains in.


Her hostility, that's not a problem. Her extremeness, clinginess and attempts at manipulation? Her repetitive bouts of fanaticism? Those are complete dealbreakers for Ranma.

Likewise, people complain that Ranma is "too moral" for Shampoo


Really? :lol:
Never heard that one.
And while he may have some principles he actually sticks to, calling that "morals", no, that gets weird.

Remember how she made a big deal of giving Akane "the kiss of death", but instead simply wiped her memories of Ranma?


That's supposed to be less bad? Uh, not really. From Ranma's viewpoint, that's really unacceptable.

Shampoo shares a deep love of martial arts with Ranma. Of all the three fiancees, she could probably understand Ranma's life the best, since her upbringing in the remote Byankhalas is closest to it. She not only accepts Ranma's desire to be "the heroic male" figure, she actively respects it - it's shown in both the New Year's Ghost Cat story and the Pink & Link story that Shampoo actually finds the idea of being "the damsel in distress" to be a romantic notion, and would love for Ranma to be her knight in shining armor. She also has interests outside of martial arts - for example, she owns her own Super Famicom, which Ranma would find interesting. Despite fanon, she has no desire to "drag him back to China"; she would be more than happy to live in Japan with Ranma. She's unabashed in her affection for Ranma, willing to express that she cares for, trusts and respects him, which is something that Ranma doesn't get a lot of in canon. She's an excellent cook who enjoys cooking for Ranma. Despite fanon, she has no desire to control Ranma's future; so long as Ranma accepts her as his wife, she is happy to mold herself to suit Ranma's desires for a life.


Uh... That feels like a LOT of twisting...
No, simply cannot agree.
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Re: How compatible could the (non-Akane) girls be with Ranma

Postby Ellen Kuhfeld » Fri Feb 28, 2020 7:13 pm

Kasumi may, or may not, be a feasible fiancee. I haven't read the manga that much, and only watched the first two seasons of the anime (plus two movies). But Kasumi seems the least characterized of the girls - which means a wider range to write her without breaking canon. If I were in Ranma's place, I'd definitely pick Kasumi. I wouldn't survive Akane, and my wallet wouldn't survive Nabiki. But then -- I'm not Ranma. I gave my analysis of the three sisters in Different Colors:

Akane's walk slowed a bit. Her head was lowered, her face pensive. Ranma slowed, and turned back to see her. "Ano …." Akane said, as she came to a stop. "Do you ever wonder what it'd be like being engaged to Kasumi?"

Ranma could tell this was serious. They were nowhere near a park, but there was a low wall. She picked Akane up by the waist, and set her on it, then hopped up beside her. She put her hand on Akane's, and was silent for a while. "Kasumi's one of the dearest people I know," Ranma finally said. "But she doesn't live in the same world I do. What would we do together? Or Nabiki. If I wuz on the fight circuit, she could be my manager. But I don't want the fight circuit, and runnin' a dojo wouldn't make enough to keep her happy.

"I got the right sister. We may fight a lot, but we can fight side by side just as strong as with each other. We can be partners. D'ya see that for me with Nabiki or Kasumi? If you c'n live with me not being a perfect housekeeper, or a perfect man among men, I can live with you that way."

"As long as you don't leave the freezer door open on the ice cream. You, I think, already know enough not to leave the toilet seat up."

"Bitter experience, Akane, bitter experience. The panda is messy."
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Re: How compatible could the (non-Akane) girls be with Ranma

Postby Spica75 » Sat Feb 29, 2020 1:13 pm

Kasumi may, or may not, be a feasible fiancee. I haven't read the manga that much, and only watched the first two seasons of the anime (plus two movies). But Kasumi seems the least characterized of the girls - which means a wider range to write her without breaking canon.


Exactly. She doesn't have anything that specifically makes her a bad match, and is effectively "openended" so all a writer needs to do is figure out how to get them together if they want to, rather than how to fix all the damn issues that are also in the way for most others.

I gave my analysis of the three sisters in Different Colors


Yeah, that is probably quite realistic.
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Re: How compatible could the (non-Akane) girls be with Ranma

Postby Cheb » Fri Mar 27, 2020 12:50 pm

as "the most evil girl in Ranma 1/2" is more or less fanon. She talks big, yeah, but in the end, it's mostly shown as bluff.

Seconded. The more I write and research, the more I find her behavior is posturing.
Some characters just love painting themselves as eeeevil and scary, the extreme example of which is Risky Boots (see my crossover).

The big honking problem with Shampoo is that she's a foreigner.
Problem #2 are the fathers dead set on joining the schools (true for Ukyou as well).

If you c'n live with me not being a perfect housekeeper,

Don't forget Ranma's obsession with tidiness and cleanliness. If he lives somewhere he puts effort into keeping that place in order.

My opinion:
Kasumi - low compatibility. They just don't intersect. I suppose someone could make it work but I'm not interested neither in reading nor in writing such: too much work for too little gain.

Nabiki - requires a wakeup call to stop feeling invincible and being an evil bitch (I tried writing that. not for pairing purposes, though). But even after maturing her a bit the gap between their interests is too wide.

Shampoo - good match of personalities, both are sneaky and manipulative, both are pure martial artists (no multiclassing, so to speak), she has one hell of a dowry in her village's techniques.

Ukyou - one of the worst due to her self-centered obsession. They *could* work if she has the right kind of wakeup call and their fathers are removed somehow from the picture. Being stranded in another universe is the most realistic approach. They share a lot of experience being self-sufficient street rats, which would help build understanding *if* she pulls her head out of her selfish daydreams.

Akane - very, very hard to make it work (I suspect that was the whole point of maintainable status quo on the mangaka's part). My researching brought me to conclusion it's mostly Souun's overprotectiveness wrapping her in an insulating cocoon (no one would train her because of fearing his wrath) which drives her absolutely stir-crazy, thus making her a snappy bitch. I've already tried ameliorating that in my fic by bringing in a crossover character who she can befriend and who isn't afraid of bruising her in sparring. But honestly, being stranded in a different universe than their fathers is a must.

Also, all the girls would benefit much if they thought more of what *they* could *offer* Ranma and less of what they want for themselves. If they suddenly had a growth and did exactly that, Shampoo would come with most attractive deals. Akane mostly has a household and Ukyou is a wandering demi-hobo who could make him live through interesting times.
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Re: How compatible could the (non-Akane) girls be with Ranma

Postby Spica75 » Fri Mar 27, 2020 11:29 pm

good match of personalities, both are sneaky and manipulative


I think i would rather call that a BAD match of personalities. Same or similar does not equal a good couple, and almost certainly not when it's the negative sides that are the same.
From a writer's perspective i can see it as a good match perhaps, but not from the characters perspective.

one of the worst due to her self-centered obsession.


Yes and no. She occasionally shows that her egocentrism is something she already can get over, add that together with how she's actually capable of acting like a friend, that can make a big difference for how well a couple gets along.

My researching brought me to conclusion it's mostly Souun's overprotectiveness wrapping her in an insulating cocoon (no one would train her because of fearing his wrath) which drives her absolutely stir-crazy, thus making her a snappy bitch.


That's a part of it for sure. Don't forget though that she is seen as extremely different BEFORE Ranma drags his issues into the neighborhood.

Akane's big problem is really that Ranma's arrival invalidates nearly everything she's based her identity and pride on, aaand then Ranma outright mocks her about it. That's the kind of thing that can and in the real world has caused mental breakdowns and literally murder.
She's got used to being the popular, prettiest girl at school who is academically talented and the best martial artist around, remember, it isn't until Ranma arrives that Kuno shows off that he may be better than her, and she apparently doesn't know Kodachi at all yet.

So, suddenly she's getting taunted for being a poor martial artist, AND those better or similar to her in skill are popping up all over the place... That alone would hurt anyone badly.

Also, all the girls would benefit much if they thought more of what *they* could *offer* Ranma and less of what they want for themselves.


Probably.

If they suddenly had a growth and did exactly that, Shampoo would come with most attractive deals. Akane mostly has a household and Ukyou is a wandering demi-hobo who could make him live through interesting times.


You're thinking too much about "valuable" and not enough about personalities i think.
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