Ranma 1/2 Volume 28 is a manga with the story and art by Rumiko Takahashi, and it was published in North America by Viz Media. This review is for the second printing of this volume, which was released in 2004. The Ranma 1/2 manga volumes are “flipped,” which means that they read like American books instead of traditional Japanese manga. Ranma 1/2 is rated “T+” for older teens, due to some panels that feature female nudity.
There are a total of six stories that appear in this volume of Ranma 1/2, and they are all stories that are exclusive to the manga. In the first story, a large pig is rampaging in the streets and beating up young men; however, Ryoga is easily able to defeat the pig. He is approached by a young woman named Akari Unryu, who comes from a family that has raised champion sumo wrestling pigs. She claims that she will marry the one who has defeated the Yokozuna Katsunishiki, the large pig that had been rampaging in the streets. Ryoga finds himself wondering if his heart still truly belongs to Akane, or if he has feelings for Akari.
This is a story that I wish had somehow been animated for the Ranma 1/2 anime series. This particular story would have worked well in the animation format, and this story is great character development for Ryoga. Akari is also referenced in another story that appears later in Volume 28, so I suspect that she may have more of a role to play in the remaining volumes of Ranma 1/2.
The next story sees Genma trying out an experimental hair tonic for regrowing hair on his head. The tonic works, but the effects of the tonic take their toll on both Ranma and Genma. While Takahashi may have tackled Genma’s baldness issue in the story about the Dragon’s Whisker, this story with the hair tonic takes Genma’s desire to regrow his hair to a new level. It was an OK story, so I’m glad to see that Takahashi confined it to being only one chapter long.
Next is a story that focuses on Miss Hinako, Ranma and Akane’s teacher. Since Miss Hinako switches from being a teenager to a grown woman through the use of various yen pieces, she’s having trouble keeping her class in line when she reverts to her teenage self. She wishes she could remain as a woman, and is able to get that wish when she acquires a pair of fighting fish that she keeps in a circular fishbowl. When Ranma realizes what’s going on, he tries to get the goldfish out of their fishbowl.