I "fake-swapped" (i.e., worked on a themed project without actually exchanging it with anyone) this figure for Craftster's Anime and Manga Swap Round 9. "Anime" is the Japanese adoption, and truncation, of the English word "animation" and "manga" simply means "comic/cartoon". I was very enamored with Japanese animation when I was younger, but I seldom watch them anymore (except for the occasional clip on YouTube), but I still read manga fairly regularly (in fact, I purchased a couple of back issues of Shounen Jump recently).
As usual, I hemmed-and-hawed for quite a while, trying to decide what I wanted to do, and I ultimately settled on Rumiko Takahashi's romantic martial arts comedy Ranma 1/2 as my subject matter. I feel that the comic series that she finished prior to starting Ranma 1/2 was better, but, while that story (a young man's misadventures as he repeatedly attempts to woo a beautiful young widow who also happens to be his landlady) has its zany moments, Maison Ikkoku had a much more realistic setting and characters than Ranma 1/2 did, so, despite liking it better, I have to admit that, as far as design goes, the cast was fairly pedestrian (in other words, none of Maison Ikkoku's characters are unique or weird enough for me to want to model them; Ranma 1/2, on the other hand, has several suitably strange individuals!) I've only seen the pilot episode of the Ranma 1/2 anime, but I read the first 17 trade paperbacks (translated into English) of the manga (it's been a while, so, I can't remember if I didn't finish the rest of them because I got bored with the storyline, or if I just had trouble tracking down the later volumes), and I also enjoyed the three Super Famicom (SNES) fighting games. The manga's original run (in Japan), was published, in 38 volumes, from September 1987 to March 1996 in Weekly Shounen Sunday magazine. Incredibly popular, the Ranma 1/2 comic was also adapted into two animated television series (as well as some feature-length films). The first TV show only lasted 18 episodes, in 1989, but a revised, second attempt was much more successful, ultimately spanning 143 installments that aired from 1989 through 1992.
Genma in both his panda and human forms.
The sign reads "Gao-!!", which is a Japanese sound effect used for roaring beasts/monsters.
Is it even possible for a panda bear to be terrifying?
A panel from the manga.
Akane Tendo, Ranma's arranged-marriage fiancée (and, yes, that was Genma's doing too), is less-than-impressed with her future father-in-law.
The pictured sign reads, "Genma da!!", which means (in an informal tone), "It's Genma!!"
If you're curious, the pair of kanji that make up Genma's first name literally translate as "Mysterious Horse".
"Horse's ass" would have been a more appropriate choice, if you ask me.
I based my Genma figure off of this sprite, from the 1992 "Ranma 1/2: Hard Battle" SNES video game.
The sign reads "Ei", which is a Japanese sound effect that an individual makes when they are exerting considerable force doing something physical, like fighting, although it's obviously much more literal in this case, as Genma is actually striking out with the sign it's written upon!
Newsprint, tissue paper, white glue, wire twist ties (ears only), and acrylic paint.
6.8 cm (2.7") wide (including the sign) x 4.6 cm (1.8") high x 3.2 cm (1.3") deep.
Two days; March 8th and 12th, 2016.
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The midi music playing is the "A Lot to Learn" theme from Ranma 1/2: Hard Battle.