Overview

Gouhou Drug is CLAMP's shortest unfinished work, sitting at three books and with only the barest hints of the plot revealed. Although this means that in many ways Rikuou's life and attitude are a mystery, there's still plenty of information to divulge. But let's begin with an overview.

  • What's the story? : GD in a nutshell
  • On a chilly December night, a young man named Kudou Kazahaya is picked up off the streets and taken to a deceptively normal looking drugstore in the center of Tokyo . . . [MORE]

  • Setting the scene : The store and the neighborhood
  • Although I have seen various educated guesses taken at where exactly Gouhou Drug is set, I have been unable to find any official commentary that confirms it. However it seems most likely that our story takes place in Shimokitazawa . . . [MORE]

  • Chapter by chapter : tracing the plot
  • The following is a brief breakdown of the "arcs" of the story, dealing not with motivations but with the basic features of the plot. The series is only three books long . . . [MORE]

    All about Rikuou

    This, then, is the story that Rikuou is an integral part of. But at its heart, Gouhou Drug follows Kazahaya and his first experiences as a Green Drugstore employee. Much of what we learn about Rikuou comes slower, revealed through his partner's perceptions of him and the snatches of memory he steals. In this section, I'll put together some of those pieces.

  • Personality: First impressions, biased narrators
  • What can be said about Rikuou at first glance? He certainly puts on quite a show for his new roommate . . . [MORE]

  • Long and Cool : Physical Appearance
  • Well, he's a CLAMP character. They certainly do favor a certain tall dark and handsome look for their leading men. But how would we describe Rikuou specifically? . . . [MORE]

  • Snatches of Memory : Rikuou's history
  • Rikuou certainly doesn't talk much about his past. Fortunately for us, all of the other characters seem to weigh in on it as some point, even helpfully taking a peek directly into his mind. From that, we learn . . . [MORE]

  • Personality: Under the surface
  • Rikuou's actual motivations are a great deal more serious than the hot and cold exterior he shows superficially. While these are all different, valid sides of his true character, I would say that deepest of all is a protective streak . . . [MORE]

    Pertinent Relationships

    Above is the best verbal sketch I can make of the boy, at least at present. So, how does he relate to the people around him? More than that, what do they mean to them? I'm veering towards analysis here, so take this section with a grain salt, but here are my thoughts on how Rikuou feels about the people he lives and works with.

  • My Beautiful Corpse : Who is Tsukiko?
  • Without a doubt the most opaque enigma presented in GD is who and what exactly Tsukiko is, not just in relationship to Rikuou but as a person herself. Therefore I'd like to start off with a little summary of the facts . . . [MORE]

  • Meant to be partners : Kudou Kazahaya
  • Kazahaya, I feel, will have been pretty well represented by some of these previous sections. After all, he is our fearless narrator. But how Rikuou actually feels about his partner is not necessarily so obvious . . . certainly not to Kazahaya . . . [MORE]

  • Torturing Those Kids : Kakei and Saiga
  • Rikuou's relationship with these two is not anything you might expect. Although they've set themselves up for the role of foster parents, or at the least employers and providers, the way Rikuou treats them is a pretty far cry from that . . . [MORE]

    . . . And More

    And now to step completely away from the manga itself. Here you can read any other disconnected theories, notes or random analysis I have stumbled into as pertains to Rikuou. Enjoy, but remember that we're pretty far from any 'proof' now.

  • The Trouble with Tokyopop : Lost in Translation
  • Let me state for the record that as a company, I do not have any particular issues with Tokyopop. However, and I am being blunt now, their translation of Gouhou Drug is simply not their best work. Is this a case of a simple disagreement between me and them? For the most part, it's very possible. However there are some translation gaffs that I count as major changes of intent . . . [MORE]

  • Hidden ink : Why the tattoo?
  • I covered this briefly and descriptively under the heading of Rikuou's appearance, but wanted to return to the subject of his tattoo for a moment. First, a little bit about how body art is viewed in Japan. in a word, not kindly . . . [MORE]

  • A Matter of Taste : "But He Loves Chocolate!"
  • Is this really a major character point for Rikuou? Not only his coworkers but CLAMP and his official biographies would certainly like you to think so! Here are some cultural context clues . . . [MORE]

  • Opening back up : Rikuou's Character Arc
  • It was perhaps a bit early in the story to state with any certainty where Rikuou was going as a person, or what CLAMP's goals for him were. But even in those first three books, I could certainly see him changing . . . [MORE]

  • CLAMP in Crossoverland : Where do we fit in?
  • Anyone who knows CLAMP knows that this is a manga-machine that fuels the creative process with many, many easter-eggs, cameos, and crossovers. GD is no exception to this rule. Just for fun, I've attempted to 'place' the series in it's correct CLAMP-world, and here are the results of that web . . . [MORE]

  • The story continues . . . words from CLAMP
  • Technically, Gouhou Drug is not dead, it's just taking a long rest. In a cold freezer. But let me attempt to damp my cynicism and give you nothing but the official verdict from CLAMP for the curious . . . [MORE]

    TURNING IN REVOLUTION. fanlisting adopted from SAYA and PAM, with thanks. background created with help from BGPATTERNS.