Renge Houshakuji (宝積寺 れんげ, Hōshakuji Renge) is in Class 1-A with Hikaru, Kaoru and Haruhi. Her home is in Paris, France but she transfers into Ouran Academy as a means of meeting Kyoya Ootori who, due to his close resemblance to a dating sim game character with whom Renge is infatuated, Renge decides he is her real life fiancé. While her crush fades, Renge establishes herself as the Host Club's self-proclaimed manager and appears in the series on a somewhat regular basis.
PersonalityRenge is quite intelligent and driven; she is also very loud and outspoken. Her home is in Paris, France and her father, Reynard Houshakuji, does business with Yoshio Ootori. Upon seeing a photograph of the youngest Ootori son, Kyoya, she is smitten and insists that she must immediately leave for Japan to meet her future husband. Renge is a hardcore otaku, which results in her cosplaying frequently, an example of which may be seen in Ep 22 - Mori-senpai Has an Apprentice Candidate!, where she cosplays along with the Host Club as a samurai maiden. Renge has a rather strange and unique ability to appear from out of nowhere on a motorized platform that crackles with electricity as it rises while she laughs maniacally.
Renge has dark-blonde hair and dark-brown eyes. When she isn't cosplaying, she is usually seen in the Ouran girls' uniform and wearing a hair bow. A trait that Renge displays in both the anime and the manga is that, when she becomes extremely angry, she assumes the aspect of Medusa, with her hair transforming into snakes. At such times, she can drive most of the other characters before her in blind panic.
Plot InvolvementRenge first meets the Host Club by maintaining the wild fantasy that she is Kyoya's fiancée despite never having met him in person. Her infatuation is based upon his striking resmeblance to an anime dating game character named Miyabi from Uki Doki Memorial!, in which she seems to indulge 24/7. Still, her experience with such games and her obsession with anime and manga cause her to be more aware of character development and plot development techniques.
Though Kyoya expresses little interest in the girl, Renge wheedles her way into becoming the club's Lady Manager. As such, she attempts to make-over what she considers to be the Hosts' "bland" characters into something more enticing for their customers. She does this to assist her "crush," Kyoya, who tells the other Hosts to tolerate her for business reasons. Tamaki allows this in hopes that Renge will become a female friend to Haruhi and inspire her to act and dress in a more feminine manner. Much to his frantic dismay, Renge develops a crush on Haruhi, believing she's a boy. Renge is a flagrant fangirl/otaku and a huge fan of both moe and cosplay. She self-promotes doushinji in order to stimulate attendance at her Kyoya's Host Club. Despite her outrageous actions, she genuinely cares about the club's members and her misguided efforts are intended to help them. An example of this is seen is Ep 06 - The Grade School Host is the Naughty Type! wherein she helps elementary schoolboy brat, Shiro Takaoji, find his place among the hosts.Amusingly enough, Renge proves to be an effective manager due to her ability to accurately predict what will win the greatest approval of customers due to her wide range of knowledge on various subjects, most of them connected to the concept of "moe." Kyoya has complimented her abilities in this regard several times. Renge also participates in activities which allow her talents to flourish outside of Host Club. In the anime, she is shown hosting a show for school children and she apparently is involved in producing the Moe Moe Ouran Journal (萌え萌え桜蘭日記, Moe Moe Ōran Nikki), a school magazine containing all things related to moe at Ouran High School.
In the manga, Renge largely disappears from view after her initial appearance in Chapter 3, although she makes cameo appearances in subsequent chapters. Bisco Hatori has said that Renge was supposed to be more of a recurring character, but it never happened; most of her roles in the anime performed by Tamaki in the manga (e.g. the coaching of Shiro and Nekozawa). In the 2011 July Special, Renge is seen as a business student at Ouran University and is still quite the hopeless romantic.
RelationshipsEp 15 - The Refreshing Battle in Karuizawa! Haruhi says that Misuzu resembles Renge by being loud and outspoken; and again in Ep 11 - Big Brother is a Prince! when Haruhi remarks that Kirimi resembles Renge in her knowldege of reverse harem mangas. Renge begins to crush on Haruhi during the film shoot when Haruhi "saves her life" by pushing her out of the way of a falling ladder. Thereafter, Renge visits Music Room #3 often, following the club anywhere they go and utilizing her trademark "powerful motor" to appear out of nowhere to comment upon or participate in Host Club activities. Renge also notices the twins' and Tamaki's attraction to Haruhi, thrilled by the idea of a four-way love drama. When Haruhi dresses up as a girl for the last party of the Host Club, she and the rest of Haruhi's regular guests state that they've always known Haruhi is a crossdresser, only learning her true gender when the Host Club leaves her a note informing her after they leave Japan to study abroad in America. Miyabi, in the dating-sim video game, Uki Doki Memorial! Renge transfers her love for Miyabi onto Kyoya and declares herself Kyoya's fiancée, having an extreme crush on him. Kyoya tolerates Renge, allowing her to do whatever she likes in the Host Club because Renge's father, Reynard Houshakuji, is an important business partner with The Ootori Group. Once Renge's crush transfers onto Haruhi, she and Kyoya seem to be friendly towards one another, having come to appreciate one another's abilities and talents. This is seen in Mori-senpai Has an Apprentice Candidate!, where Renge's knowledge about the shinsengumi and her suggestion to allow the club's guests to project their fantasies randomly onto the hosts impresses Kyoya.
- (to Haruhi) "I can't believe I didn't realize this sooner. It was so chivalrous of you to risk your life to protect me. I could feel the love when you lectured me in judging people. When you said it was fun to get to know people little by little, you were talking about me! Come on, Haruhi! Let's go to my house and play some games together. I think it's time you get to know me better."
- (to Tamaki) Get away from me, you phony!
- No way. You've got it all wrong.
- (To Kyoya) Kyoya, is fine. No changes needed..None at all....
- I could eat three bowls of rice!
- Despite the school's uniform dress code, Renge cosplays every chance she can; however, she's terrible at it, which the other club members are quick to note, albeit silently. No one seems to care that she doesn't wear the school uniform very often, though that may be because she intimidates almost everyone who encounters her.
- She almost always makes her appearences in the anime by rising up out of the ground on a large platform, laughing boisterously. A large motor is seen crackling with electricity before she appears, and the sound effect is "Powerful Motor." The laugh is apparently known as the "ojou-sama laugh". The laugh is more like an actual laugh in the English version.
- Her voice actor is the same as Amy Yeager from Case Closed.