Otaku #04: The All-New Tenchi Muyo

Tenchi Muyo’s habit of chas­ing love comes back in new manga

Bran­don Beatty, con­tribut­ing editor

I’m dust­ing off a leg­endary anime throw­back. Doing this brings back mem­o­ries of Car­toon Network’s hit show Toon­ami, which brought its view­ers the best action shows around. Of course, great anime helped com­ple­ment Toon­ami, along with its host Tom the Robot and the bad­dest ride around, the star­ship Abso­lu­tion. How­ever, one of its anime shows had a guy who was not only the stan­dard of what heroes should be, but he was also pop­u­lar with women from outer space. Yes, otaku, I’m talk­ing about Tenchi Masaki, and he and his friends are back in vol­ume one of The All New Tenchi Muyo pub­lished by Viz Media.

The All New Tenchi Muyo is part of the orig­i­nal Tenchi Muyo sto­ry­line from which the series itself spans and con­tains movies, TV series and spin-offs. It is con­sid­ered among the great­est anime series of all time. The entire main

Photo cour­tesy of Amazon.com

cast is back in this series, star­ring in sev­eral adven­tures in the first vol­ume, which is sub­ti­tled Alien Nation. Each of Tenchi’s lovely lady friends has their own story from Ryoko get­ting a job, Sasami bak­ing a deli­cious cake that holds a spe­cial mean­ing to her and Ayeka (Sasami’s sis­ter) to Tenchi and Ayeka going on a date. Also Mihoshi, the galac­tic police offi­cer, crashes her space­ship in Masaki Lake, the super genius Washu stops a bur­glary attempt by two space thieves, and in the final chap­ter, Ryo-oh-ki trans­forms into a sexy and adult form of her­self to go on a date with Tenchi as a reward for learn­ing to walk in her adult form.

As a Tenchi Muyo fan, I was very pleased that Hitoshi Okuda kept the for­mula intact that made this series loved glob­ally by anime fans from the begin­ning. Each page is guar­an­teed to bring back the great mem­o­ries fans have of see­ing Tenchi and company’s adven­tures on Toon­ami. All the char­ac­ters and set­tings stayed true to the orig­i­nal sto­ry­line with­out any miss­ing links. To be fair, I must also give Viz Media’s Fred Burke and Lil­lian Olsen credit for a flaw­less Eng­lish adap­ta­tion and trans­la­tion in this return of Tenchi and com­pany to fans out­side of Japan.

In short, The All New Tenchi Muyo: Alien Nation did not let me down as a Tenchi fan. Until Tenchi and crew return to U.S. air­waves for their sec­ond con­quest via Ryo-oh-ki Air­lines, this vol­ume will please all Tenchi fans who believe that this series is not a fad but a true icon among anime. Tenchi now, Tenchi tomor­row, Tenchi forever!

Bran­don Beatty con­tributes Otaku each quar­ter of Gam­ing Insur­rec­tion. He can be reached by e-mail at brandongi@gaminginsurrection.com.

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