Kyoko Otonashi

Kyoko Otonashi is the live-in manager of Maison Ikkoku. She arrived suddenly one afternoon and needless to say, her appearance stunned everyone. The tenants take an instant liking to her, in their own peculiar way, especially Godai, who instantly falls in love with her.

Kyoko's "relationship" with Godai becomes more complicated when she enrolls in a tennis club and meets Shun Mitaka, her instructor. Mitaka and Kyoko share a maturity that one could say Godai lacks, and the two of them become instant friends. Of course, Mitaka is in love with Kyoko too, and is much more confident in his ablilities than Godai, although Kyoko is hesitant to enter into a relationship with anyone, as both Godai and Mitaka learn.

Kyoko became the manager as a favor to her father-in-law. A fact that no one learns for quite a while. They also learn that she is a widow. Kyoko lost her husband, Soichiro, after an all-to-brief marriage. They were hopelessly in love, and the fact that they were married less than a year makes the loss even harder for Kyoko to deal with. For most of the series, she is very hesitant to choose between Godai or Mitaka, for fear that in choosing one of them, it would mean her love for Soichiro was not real.

But Kyoko is not a one-dimensional character. She has many emotional layers besides the pain that the loss of her husband has caused her. She is very warm and loving, looking past her tenants shortcomings and annoying habits, and treating them like an extended family. But she also is extremely jealous and very fiesty. She is fiercely independent and refuses to be controlled or manipulated into making decisions that she isn't ready for, even if the manipulators are her own parents.

The Meaning Behind the Name

Kyoko means "echo child" and Otonashi means "no sound," a pun on the fact that her room has no number, therefore, no sound.

Sumi Shimamoto & Ellen Kennedy

Along with playing our favorite apartment manager, Sumi Shimamoto has had roles as Asuna Mizunokoji, Ten's Mother, and Rara of Urusei Yatsura, Zombie Sue from Maris, the Supergal, Nausicaa from Nausicaa, and A-ko's Mother aka Wonder Woman from Project A-ko.

In addition to playing Kyoko, Ellen Kennedy can be heard in the roles of Mokuren in Please Save My Earth, Lebia Maverick of Silent Mobius, Sarah in Zoids, Elise Aston from The Vision of Escaflowne, and Princess Snake from Dragon Ball Z in addition to many other roles.

An Introduction to Maison Ikkoku