Ranma 1/2 Volume 36 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 2006. 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.
Volume 36 picks up right where Volume 35 ended, and this volume concludes the storyline about the cursed springs of Jusenkyo. There is also one final chapter after the conclusion of that storyline, which serves as a kind of epilogue.
The storyline about Jusenkyo is still rather strange, but I really like how much Takahashi focused on Ranma and Akane. It was especially sweet to see Ranma’s reaction when he thought that he could potentially lose Akane forever. Throughout the series, the reader always suspected that he had some kind of feelings for Akane, but this volume proved it.
I was a little disappointed by the epilogue, though. Ultimately, I have to say that while the series comes to an end, it doesn’t truly end. Most of the plots concerning Akane and Ranma’s various suitors aren’t resolved, and overall, life just seems to go on as normal. With the way the storyline at Jusenkyo was done, the reader would think that there would finally be a resolution when it comes to Ranma and Akane, so the fact that this resolution is not seen in the epilogue makes the ending of the series feel anti-climactic.
In some respects, I wish that Takahashi had wrapped up the Ranma 1/2 series a little earlier, because by the time the reader reaches the end, it feels like the series was dragging after getting off to such a good start. As I pointed out in some of my reviews of the later volumes of the series, there were several storylines that simply felt like retreads of stories and ideas that were presented earlier in the series.
I also wish the series also had a true ending to it, instead of leaving so much unresolved and unanswered. As someone who had invested the time to read the series all the way from the start to the finish, I felt a little cheated and unsatisfied with the conclusion of the series.
While I do like Ranma 1/2, this is probably a manga series that I won’t reread all the way from start to finish very often. However, even after saying that, I would still recommend that manga readers should find a way to read this entire series all the way through at least once, because Ranma 1/2 is an important part of manga history.