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In an alternative feudal Japan, a strange disease that only affects males caused a massive population reduction, leaving females to fill the vacant jobs, therefore changing the social structure. Now, 80 years after the initial outbreak with a 1:4 male:female ratio, Japan is a completely matriarchal society. Females hold all important political positions, and males are their consorts. Only the most powerful female--head of Tokugawa shogunate--may keep a harem of handsome and unproductive males, known as "Oooku."


Related Series

Associated Names
Ōoku: The Inner Chambers
Le Pavillon des hommes (French)
Ooku: The Inner Chamber

Groups Scanlating

Latest Release(s)

Status in Country of Origin
11 Volumes (Ongoing)

Completely Scanlated?

Anime Start/End Chapter

User Reviews


User Rating
Average: 8.9 / 10.0 (146 votes)
Bayesian Average: 8.51 / 10.0
 49% (72 votes)
 23% (34 votes)
 12% (18 votes)
 8% (11 votes)
 3% (4 votes)
 1% (2 votes)
 1% (2 votes)
 0% (0 votes)
 1% (1 votes)
 1% (2 votes)

Last Updated
November 13th 2014, 8:13am PST

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Category Recommendations





Original Publisher

Serialized In (magazine)
Melody (Hakusensha)

Licensed (in English)

English Publisher
Viz (10 Volumes - Ongoing)

Activity Stats (vs. other series)
Weekly Pos #600 increased(+143)
Monthly Pos #1052 increased(+85)
3 Month Pos #1260 increased(+39)
6 Month Pos #1338 (No change)

List Stats
On 518 reading lists
On 851 wish lists
On 27 unfinished lists
On 270 custom lists

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Forum Posts
Ōoku: The Inner Chambers Gets Live-Action Drama 1068 days, 8 hours, 59 minutes ago
Ōoku: The Inner Chambers Wins Tiptree Award 1738 days, 4 hours, 54 minutes ago

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User Comments [ Order by usefulness ]

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Buy it   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by naomi
January 14th, 2010, 7:31am
I've bought volumes 1 & 2 for £14. Read them and love them. Considering the fact it is larger (about an inch width and height), has colour and end notes pages, french flaps and no advertisement in it either (it looks really classy), I'd say it's worth it.

Volume one mainly follows Mizuno while Volume two follows on from the end of v1, when the shogun, Yoshimune, goes to the archives to find out more about the past. v2 therefore follows Arikoto, a Buddhist Abbot who is forced into staying in the inner chambers, showing us the past events to how the first female shogun came to be. To be honest, at first I was a little put off by the "old english" way it was translated into, but after a while I adjusted to it and it wasn't bad at all.

The art and style is wonderful~ One thing that impressed me was that even though there are practically a gazzillion males shown (from the inner chamber), each of them had their own distinctive look. Not like in some series where if you remove the hair, the face of every character looks the same. What I also love about Ooku are the characters and their personalities. Each are different and suit each character well. The one that stood out for me the most was Kasuga. All I can say is she is seriously one ruthless and determined woman.

I've enjoyed what the 2 volumes have already given, and now I'm eagerly awaiting v3.
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Buy if wanna read? =.=   
Rating: N/A
by darcyaglow
December 6th, 2009, 9:14pm
It's pretty sad that i will have to send more than 40sgd to buy 2 volumes of this series from Viz. I cannot read Japanese so I can only look at pictures in the raws =.= Since this series already been licensed so no scanlation groups gonna translate it. I hope some kind readers gonna scan the English tranlations and share it ^^
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Master Piece   
Rating: 9.5 / 10.0
by Shoujofan
September 4th, 2009, 6:00am
I love Fumi Yoshinaga's work and she always suprises me. I did not like the first manga of her that I read, Gerard & Jacques, for that reason I stayed a long time away from her works. Antique Bakery was so praised that I forced myself to read it and fell in love. After I got Flower of Life and I was fully convinced that she was one of the top manga-kas of her generation. I was very eager to read Ooku, and every nomination this work received increased my curiosity. I was very happy when VIZ announced this title.

Ooku impressed me with the mature, beautiful and neat art style. The story was really interesting, mixing history and gender discussions, the main character, Mizuno, is kind and ambitious, although a little naïve, and I felt very interest to know if he would succeed in his career at the inner chamber. For that who do not know, the inner chamber is the shogun seraglio, in a Japan where most of the man, specially the young, died in reason of a strange disease, the red pox. Women took the power and men are an expensive delicacy and necessary source of seed. Mizuno used to bed with women who wanted child for free. Only the most powerful and rich families can afford a husband, and only the shogun can have so many.

I don't know if Yoshinaga will mix real Japanese history in her series, like the contact with other countries. Does the disease affected other places or is a Japanese plague? I can hardly wait for the next volume. Ah, one problem for me, VIZ was very careful and the text is almost in archaic English. It's difficult for a foreigner - I'm Brazilian - to read it as fast as if it was in current English, but this choice give to Ooku a more elegant face. Really nice peace of work.
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