One of the most common characters in rakugo is Inkyo (隠居 いんきょ). He appears in a countless number of stories, and many rakugo start by a visitor knocking on the door of Inkyo’s house.
“Inkyo” literally means “to retire”, but it usually means a retired old man when it is used as a title.
Inkyo is the elder, the go-to person in the community. Everybody respects this gentle and wise leader. He is the source of wisdom.
However, he can also be vain and superficial. He sometimes has hard time accepting his ignorance. He can be misleading to cover up his lack of knowledge though it is often not on purpose.
As I wrote in the article called The Definition of Rakugo?, almost all characters in rakugo have flaws, and Inkyo is not an exception. Their flaws make them real and immensely likeable and approachable. They are like us, doing their best to live and enjoy this thing called life.
If you have missed the first two characters, here are the links: