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Anime / Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki

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The original continuity of the Tenchi Muyo! franchise created by Masaki Kajishima and Hiroki Hayashi, which consists of three six-episode OVA series, one four-episode OVA series and two special episodes. The spinoff series Tenchi Muyo! GXP and Isekai no Seikishi Monogatari (a.k.a. Tenchi Muyo: War on Geminar) are a part of this continuity.

The first series, released from 1992-93 and directed by Hayashi, was mostly introductions to the major characters, who join Tenchi's harem via a Debut Queue. Episodes 5 and 6 bring in the first major villain, the space criminal Kagato. The second series, directed by Kenichi Yatagai and released from 1994-1995, includes some major revelations about the characters' pasts and features a new villain, Dr. Clay. The third series, again directed by Yatagai and released from 2004-2005 (yes, it took nine years to continue this story), focuses more on the characters' families and resolves some lingering issues from the first two parts. The fourth 4-episode series was directed by Hidetoshi Takahashi and was released from 2016 to 2017 (yes, it took almost another eleven years to continue the story again). The fifth six-episode series, directed by Keitaro Motonaga, premiered in February 2020.


The first two OVA series were notably one of the first anime released by Geneon (back then known as Pioneer) in North America. Funimation acquired the rights to the third OVA in 2005 and they would eventually license the first two OVA series 10 years later.

Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki provides examples of:

  • Abbey Road Crossing: This back cover for a Tenchi Muyo! soundtrack CD (which was entitled Meet The Tenchi Muyo! and featured several other Beatles cover pastiches).
  • All There in the Manual: Masaki Kajishima released several Doujinshi and Light Novels expanding on the background of this continuity; part of the reason for GXP was to help explain some of this to the anime-only fanbase.)
  • Ancestral Weapon: The Tenchi Sword/Master Key, which is also a Laser Blade.
  • Artistic License - Lightsaber Safety: Tenchi looks straight into where the laser blade pops out at one point when his sword doesn't work.
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  • Arc Welding: The fourth and fifth series are this for the first three series, GXP, and War on Geminar.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: The Juraian Royal Family.
  • Big Bad: Kagato is responsible for all the danger in the first series and stopping his plans is Tenchi's first mission. Subverted in the 2nd and 3rd with Tokimi, Washu's and Tsunami's sister and one of the three goddesses.
  • Brother–Sister Incest: Several examples, the most prominent being Ayeka and Yosho's arranged marriage (although the actual marriage never happens.)
  • Call to Adventure: Katsuhito does this to Tenchi using Schmuck Bait.
  • Camp Straight: Seiryo Tennan, otherwise known as the pink-haired guy who almost marries Ayeka.
  • Chekhov M.I.A.: A very subtle example. In episode 4, Mihoshi's computer lists a few of Kagato's past crimes. If you pay attention to it as it fades into background noise, one of the crimes is the kidnapping of a "female student" from the Science Academy. Two episodes later, this turns out to be Washu (though of course she was actually a professor)
    • Mihoshi asks Washu if she is the students, and Washu face-faults. Her students are pranksters...
  • The Chessmaster: Z
  • Dark-Skinned Blond: The Kuramitsu family. Word of God says that the entire Seniwan race looks like this.
  • Dude Looks Like a Lady: Misao Kuramitsu. If not for a few certain physical features, he would easily be mistaken for Mihoshi. Don't worry though, by GXP he looks like a man, albeit a very pretty one...
  • Earth-Shattering Kaboom: Part of Misao's plan to "rescue" Mihoshi.
    • Also Z's entrance
  • Everyone Is Related: See the Tangled Family Tree below.
  • Forbidden Fruit: The reason Tenchi enters Ryoko's shrine in the first place.
  • For Want of a Nail: If Tenchi hadn't snatched the key from Katsuhito, he wouldn't have resurrected Ryoko, Ayeka and Sasami would've never encountered Tenchi, Mihoshi wouldn't have crash-landed on Earth and met the heroes, and Washu would've never been freed.
  • Genius Ditz: Mihoshi.
  • Healing Factor: Ryoko easily grows another hand after Tenchi cuts it off.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Zero switches sides when she refuses to kill Tenchi.
  • Hermaphrodite: Washu explains that Kagato was born as one but cast out his female side due to his hatred of women.
  • Incest Is Relative: All over the place in this series.
  • Insistent Terminology: Misaki prefers that Ayeka and Sasami call her "mother". Ayeka is embarrassed about this, although her mother seems to be aware of this, not hesitating to deal with anyone who teases her kids over it.
  • Kabuki Sounds: Used gratuitously to, for the most part, punctuate beats.
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: Though they're mostly All There in the Manual, which tends to cause confusion in viewers who watch the 3rd OVA.
  • Look Behind You: In the first episode, Tenchi has Ryoko look out of the classroom's window so he can make his escape. However, it doesn't last long before Ryoko's rage ends up igniting the leaking gas and destroying the classroom.
  • The Mole: The shape-shifting robot Zero, who ends up merging with Ryoko.
  • The Original Series
  • Physical God: (Sasami/Tsunami, Washu, & Tokimi; also, OVA3 spoiler:Tenchi is revealed to be the earthly avatar of a being more powerful than the three goddesses who created the universe.)
  • Rake Take: Subverted in the first episode when Ryoko steps on a metal rake. She doesn't get hit in the face, she instead bends the pole by smacking it. This, however, leaves an opening for Tenchi to slice her wrist off.
  • Schmuck Bait: Deliberately used by Katsuhito in the first episode. He warns Tenchi not go down to the cave near the Masaki shrine, because he knows Tenchi will disobey and end up releasing Ryoko.
  • Serial Escalation: The 3rd OVA likes to do this.
  • Shout-Out: Kagato blows up Mr. Spock in the fourth episode.
    • Misao's ship The Chobimaru is a giant sphere that can destroy an entire planet. In other words, it's the Death Star.
    • A few shoutouts to GXP are present as well.
  • Space Opera: Subverted. Most of the Space Opera elements are here, but the series mostly takes place on Earth.
  • Tangled Family Tree (See for yourself)
  • Transformation Sequence: Averted as Tenchi, Ayeka, Ryoko, and Mihoshi all change into their Super Modes instantaneously and usually off-screen.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Zero (later merged with Ryoko) and Washu (sort of)
  • Zigzag Paper Tassel: The entrance of the cave where Ryoko was trapped had a shimenawa hung from the walls which also encircled a large rock hanging from the ceiling.


Video Example(s):


Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki

Ryo-Ohki gains dodging skills after Mihoshi feeds her sake.

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