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Tenchi Muyo! watching order?
Posted 2/11/16
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Posted 2/11/16 , edited 2/11/16
Tenchi Universe and the Tenchi in Love movies are their own thing.

Tenchi OVA series followed by Ryo-Ohki is its own thing (don't get why Funimation separated that..)

Tenchi in Tokyo loosely follows the plot from a mix of the anime and OVA's. Same thing goes for the second movie.

Ai Tenchi Muyo is a series of shorts and I'm not sure which canon it follows.

...And everything else is crappy spinoff stuff that I never bothered with.


My recommendation is to go the Tenchi Universe route. As well as check out the OVA's at some point because the old ones were quite excellent (Ryo-Ohki not so much though...). Everything else I don't think is worth watching.
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Posted 2/11/16 , edited 2/11/16

Balzack wrote:

Tenchi Universe and the Tenchi in Love movies are their own thing.

Tenchi OVA series followed by Ryo-Ohki is its own thing (don't get why Funimation separated that..)

Tenchi in Tokyo loosely follows the plot from a mix of the anime and OVA's. Same thing goes for the second movie.

Ai Tenchi Muyo is a series of shorts and I'm not sure which canon it follows.

...And everything else is crappy spinoff stuff that I never bothered with.

My recommendation is to go the Tenchi Universe route. As well as check out the OVA's at some point because the old ones were quite excellent (Ryo-Ohki not so much though...). Everything else I don't think is worth watching.


I started with the first episode of Tenchi Universe at a club meeting, back in the day, and said, "Oh well, I'll jump into the series and start with the OVA box!"





...Do NOT start with the OVA's.
Each series literally has its own separate canon background (think Marvel Comics vs. Ultimate Marvel), and the OVA's in particular seem to make up new crap with every episode just to torture new fans who think they're starting to follow what's going on.

The OVA series thinks it's a sci-fi epic, and throws in everything from everywhere, while Universe was the broadcast TV series, more of a straightforward linear comfort-food sitcom/adventure like Slayers, and seems to be more of the "central" plot that the first Tenchi Muyo in Love movie followed.
Tokyo follows directly onto the Universe sitcom as a sequel--And since most fans complained that the first six episodes were a bit thin, the series rebooted the show midstream, abandoned the "Monster of the week" premise, retconned the characters' backstory again, and became a more solid TV series. (Stick with it, it gets better. We always have to keep telling angry knee-jerk fans that.)
The difference between the two divergences has become a culture war: Those who started out with the OVA's think it's a sci-fi epic, and say "How can you watch the sitcom, it's so silly and trivial!", and those who started out with Universe say "How can you watch the OVA's, you can't follow it from one episode to the next!"

There was a spinoff series, "Magical Project S", where the characters step out of character to do a magical-girl parody, and that's as good as the "crappy spinoffs" ever got. (GXP is not only a side story with none of the characters in it, but gave the series to the director of Excel Saga....Be afraid. )
And after that, the original creators seem to have sold the franchise, since everything we've gotten in the 00's has been heretical name-only title-grabbed fakes. Ignoring everything after Tokyo will save you a lot of time in watching.
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Posted 2/11/16 , edited 2/11/16
Release order:
Tenchi Muyo: Ryo Ohki OVA series 1, 2, 3
Tenchi Muyo: GXP
Isekai no Seikishi Monogatari ( Also known as War on Geminar)

^ These are the main canon series. Everything else is non-canon.
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Posted 2/11/16
Yeah I wouldn't recommend starting with the OVA's either, but they were a pretty awesome watch for the time. And a LOT of people's first foray into anime that wasn't Sailor Moon or DBZ. I think they're worth at least checking out, even if just for posterity.

As far as Tokyo is concerned, its been so long that I really wouldn't be able to have a discussion about it. All I know is that I watched it all, and disliked it. As did my friends. I'd personally prefer to just watch Universe and the sequel movies. But if you want to treat Tokyo as a sequel instead, then to each his own I guess
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Posted 2/11/16

Ejanss wrote:
...Do NOT start with the OVA's.


This is strictly my opinion, of course, but I emphatically disagree. My suggestion is to watch only the OAVs and ignore the rest. That is the original Tenchi Muyo, and that is what built its legendary reputation among us anime fans in the '90s. (And it is absolutely worth noting that only the OAVs are impartial about the harem.)
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Posted 2/11/16 , edited 2/11/16
The first canon started with the OVAs Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki (1992). It was followed by The Night Before the Carnival (1993) special, and Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki 2nd Season (1994) OVAs. Additional entries into this canon are Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki 3rd Season (2003) OVAs, the single OVA Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki 3rd Season Plus 1 (2005) and the TV spin-offs Tenchi Muyou! GXP (2002) and Tenchi Muyo! War on Geminar (2009) which share a universe with Ryo-Ohki but with mostly different characters and a different protagonist. GXP takes place elsewhere in the universe at the same time as Ryo-Ohki, while Geminar takes place 15 years after GXP.

The original creator Masaki Kajishima only did the Ryo-Ohki stories making them the most canony of canons.

The second canon directed by Hiroshi Negishi started with the TV series Tenchi Muyo! or Tenchi Universe (1995). Much like the Ghost in the Shell TV series it's a reboot and is not compatible with the previous canon. It was followed by the first and third movies: Tenchi Muyo! In Love (1996) and Tenchi Muyo! In Love 2 or Tenchi Muyo Movie 3: Tenchi Forever! or just Tenchi Forever! (1999). The second TV series Shin Tenchi Muyo! or Tenchi in Tokyo (1997) generally follows Tenchi Universe but takes further liberties which separates it a bit from being a perfect fit with the canon and was directed by Nobuhiro Takamoto.

Additionally the second movie, Tenchi Muyo! Midsummer's Eve or Tenchi the Movie 2: Daughter of Darkness (1997), directed by Tetsu Kimura, is based on a novel which cherry-picks from both the Ryo-Ohki and Tenchi Universe canons and therefore doesn't fit with either one. It doesn't go between the other two movies in any case, as the plot is basically its own thing and just exists as a side story which is non-canon with all canons. Anything else is more spin-offs with varying degrees of original takes on the characters and plot which you can look into on a case-by-case basis such as the Pretty Sammy OVAs/TV series (1995-1997) and more recently Ai Tenchi Muyo (2014).

For more reference: http://tenchi.astronerdboy.com/section-1-2-tenchi-muyo-continuities/

I started with the OVAs and am picking away at Tenchi Universe. It's fine as long as you understand the difference.
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Posted 2/11/16

Insomnist wrote:
I started with the OVAs and am picking away at Tenchi Universe. It's fine as long as you understand the difference.


... and understand that the director of Universe and Shite ... er, Tokyo is



Dude should have stuck to Tekkaman Blade, IMO.
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Posted 2/11/16
Watch Tenchi Universe first, because it give a connected story from the beginning, which helps because you can see who all the players are.
Tenchi in Tokyo is sort of a follow-on the previous stories.
Tenchi GXP is essentially a story of one of Tenchi's friends.
All the others are essentially side stories.
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Posted 2/11/16 , edited 2/11/16

rcsatcrunchyroll wrote:


Ejanss wrote:
...Do NOT start with the OVA's.


This is strictly my opinion, of course, but I emphatically disagree. My suggestion is to watch only the OAVs and ignore the rest. That is the original Tenchi Muyo, and that is what built its legendary reputation among us anime fans in the '90s. (And it is absolutely worth noting that only the OAVs are impartial about the harem.)


Pretty much this, other than I still say to watch everything. i mena you watch one, you might as well watch them all.

Then when you're done go watch Slayers
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Posted 2/11/16
Lol, good luck with that, I watched this anime back when it originally aired on Toonami Pre-2000

I dont really know the watch order tho, people pretty much universally hate Tenchi in Tokyo and its pretty much a stand alone unrelated to the anime as a whole. That being said its one of my favorites of Tenchi Muyo. I use to think it was Tenchi Universe that i loved as a pre-teen but i was wrong.
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Posted 2/11/16
I enjoyed the Tenchi Muyo GXP series since it was a stand alone series. I liked it so much I bought the DVDs for it.
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Posted 2/11/16
Perhaps this will help. Honestly, I can understand why a newcomer would be confused about where to start.

Personally, I recommend starting with either the original OVAs or Tenchi Universe. Both have their perks, and I think either would make a fine starting point.
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Posted 2/11/16
I love this anime
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Posted 2/11/16
I like to re- watch War on Geminar a lot in my opinion its stands alone only 2 small references but doesn't matter. I like Mecha genre and this series has battles
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