The Tenchiverse

Perfect couple, neh?
"Honeymoon in Deep Space...?"
(Tenchi Universe)

Tenchi Muyo

*January 2006*
First entry of the new year. Akemashite omedetou gozaimasu!

I stumbled onto a current and ongoing character poll for the girls of TM!  this week. I'd always had a suspicion that despite other people's delusions to the contrary, Ryoko was the general fan-favourite (half of us love her because she is so complex and funny, the other half because she blows stuff up). But this poll had her in the lead with a staggering 49% of the vote. In second position was Washu (17%), then Sasami/Tsunami (11%) (ironically, my second and third favourites also, in that order!).
Ayeka trailed in behind her sister at a sorry 10%, with the other girls making up the dregs. No wonder she's the girl of choice for the later show writers in pairing Tenchi up...who knows? Maybe she just is Tenchi's soulmate in the final analysis. After having SEEN OVA3, there's actually no other realistic candidate for his affection except Noike. (Please, please, DON'T do that to us!)

((For the record, Noike does not appear in this poll. I guess they just couldn't work out a way to add minus percentages (whoops, was that bitchy?)))

*December 2006*

Site updates: Everything up online to this point, basically, since August to now ;)

Observations: So I finally got my update page running. Go me. You'd think the one thing I could get sorted out would be an update page that updated as I updated, but I've never been the most sensible of people. I do do things backwards. Sorry about that...

Two observations for this month. First of all, I finally saw all of OVA 3 a week or two ago. I have to say - and hold up my hands in all honesty - that despite my rather scathing review on this site it wasn't as truly terrible as I thought it was going to be. (That doesn't mean it's brilliant, it just means that my brain didn't implode while watching it and I actually managed to get to the end without crying...)

I still have issues with the introduction of Noike, because I think she's two unforgiveable things (a mary sue and completely unecessary). However, the one thing which did come out of seeing this was the sense that, gee, thank God I'm a Ryoko fan. Even if all the major girl characters from 1 and 2 have been somewhat marginalised, I think that Ryoko possibly gets the best of the airtime in some respects. She gets to fight, to drink, to fly on a broom, play with Ryo Ohki and ultimately risk her life for Tenchi, who risks his for her in return. I can imagine there are a lot of fans of other characters out there who are more disappointed. Ayeka fans in particular I have some sympathies for. The Princess is a complete non-event and might as well not have been animated into the show at all, since all she serves to do is explain things about her family and make random occasional comments with other characters that are more adept at furthering the plot. I'm not quite sure I'm all right with what they've done to Sasami and Washu either - I think I liked the semi-peaceful visage of Tsunami from OVA 1/2 and the scientist Washu better than the Chousin interpretations. Somehow it pushes them further away from Tenchi and there are big hugs all round needed for poor Mihoshi...her chief role seems to be to incite her brother to mass murder and to be roundly abused by Noike for daring to open her mouth. Hugs Mihoshi-san - we do still love you, even if Noike obviously does not!

In conclusion, it could have been a lot worse - although anyone who says that the choice for Tenchi is clear by the end of episode 20 is delusional. It's not even clear that he might choose them all - he's far too concerned with his mother's death and not with the girls themselves. Heck, at this stage, he might even marry Tokimi...why else is she hanging around the family so much all of a sudden? Do we have a new 'harem' member?

There's still a lot to be done with this I feel. Unfortunately I'm not 100% convinced by the competency of the storyline to hold up under too much more pressure. Weird things have already happened...but as a Ryoko fan, I take tiny comfort in the fact Tenchi almost sacrifices himself for her and her alone. She still has a hope, then...the flame is still very much alight ;)

All that said, I watched the show in Japanese with titles and I don't know how widely the English dub differs (or whether there are any huge glaring continuity errors - I certainly found a few even in the Japanese dub..). The reason for this? The appalling excuse for Ryoko's English voice. Bring back Petrea Burchard...I am serious when I say that of all the character voice replacements that Tenchi Muyo has undergone, this one is the most tragic. Thank God for Ai Orikasa, that's all I can say...

The other observation for this month is Sasami Mahou Shoujo. I acquired the first season recently and although the subtitling was bad enough that even with my limited Japanese I knew some of the things were was worth the watching. Why, I hear you ask? For one thing and one thing in particular - WASHU!. Anyone else notice how Washu plays far more of a role in Sasami's offshoot shows than Ayeka ever does? (And why is it that her bad cooking seems to be spreading from series to series, now?).

Sasami's own role is kinda cute, too, and I remain fond of Misao after her Magical Project S incarnation. I now seriously hope for a release of the second season - even with poor or no subtitles!

Mihoshi also plays a part in this series as Sasami and Misao's school teacher...and Ryo Ohki as Washu/Sasami's pet.  I think that they're the only Tenchi-esque characters to jump on board, but even so it's worthwhile just watching through. The animation is a touch weird though...very updated and on occasion, a touch CGI...