Tenchi Universe Vol. #6 (of 8) (Mania.com)
Review Date: Tuesday, January 30, 2001
Release Date: Tuesday, January 30, 2001
What They Say
Tenchi and his friends flee through space! Wanted by the Galaxy Police, these fugitives have their journey complicated by low provisions, engine trouble, ghosts, and hijackers! Just wait until the Police actually catch up.
Things are getting closer to the final frantic episodes, so you know what that means... Filler time!
For our primary review, we listened to the original language track, Japanese. Throughout the disc we noticed no problems with the audio. Dialogue was clean and clear without any apparent distortion or dropouts. The opening song continues to be the highlight for this series. Dialogue is primarily center channel based while the incidental music and sound effects use the stereo channels decently.
There's a few problems with the video on this disc, and it's spread across all three episodes, though it's less persistent in the third one. It's there through them all. It's most noticeable with character animation and the hair specifically, you'll notice a lot of edge enhancement and pixellation along the lines. There's a lot of shimmering going on there too. The rainbows really rule here quite a bit. They do taper off through the disc, but from the opening sequence on disc one they're quite strong. Some areas of the disc show a lot of grain, noticeably one some of the blue space areas and some of the starship interiors. There's also a number of small nicks on the print throughout all three episodes, but they're pretty minor. All told, this transfer reminds us a lot of volume three of this series which was rife with video issues.
This is a really great looking cover. And don't put me into a lolita complex category please. The two girls look very vivid here with strong vibrant colors and eye-catching design. Especially with their being fewer characters on this cover compared to previous releases, allowing Sasami and this newcomer to get a bit of the spotlight. The back cover has a few animation pieces blended in as well as a brief summary and the episode numbers and names. The insert has a cute picture of a hot spring with the girls in various states of undress (that episode is on the next disc however). Very nice looking package.
With the main screen being a larger version of the front cover, can you guess that we really liked it? There's no animations on the menus so load and transition times are very minimal. Things are laid out pretty simply as these aren't deep loaded discs, but everything works perfectly and easily understood. Good decent menus.
The only extras included are the character data pages (spoilers for episodes on this disc) and the conceptual artwork, which goes over the various ending sequences, showing differences between them and talking about how they come about as well as some actual line art of the new characters introduced. Some interesting stuff for Tenchi fans.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
This set of episodes brings us in just under the 20 mark of this 26 episode series. While you could hope for the big ending storyline to start coming into play, you'd won't get it here. The crew gets into a series of interesting and wacky adventures a few more times before things start turning serious.
The opening episode starts with the most disastrous of situations - no more food. Well, ok, while this is the most disastrous, the reason for it is because the engines keep blowing up. But that's because Mihoshi keeps helping Washu fix them. So things go from worse to even worse. The hunger situation sets in during these problems. But who to go get food? Ryoko takes the lead on this one and tries to get Tenchi to go with her, but to no avail. So she heads off on Ryo-ohki to get food.
In the meantime, she hits every restaurant, casino and poolside she can hit. The good times are indeed here for Ryoko, even if Ryo-ohki does protest (at least until she got tied up and had her mouth taped). The rest of the gang continues to go hungry, leading to the overuse of grumbly tummy sounds. You can see how the rest of the episode goes.
The second episode is probably the best of the three included, as it focuses around Sasami. While the ship continues its travels, a mysterious energy being brings the Yagami to a standstill. The being makes its way over to the Yagami and settles into Sasami's room. Sasami, being the unafraid girl that she is, rather happily greets the being which presents itself to her as another young girl. Ryo-ohki is skittish and growls at the new girl, but Sasami settles her down and they all go over to the "dead" luxury space liner sitting next to them.
Fun ensues for the two girls as they play and chitchat and just do things that little girls do. It's a very light and fairly endearing episode. The gang on the Yagami discover Sasami is missing and heads over to the ship to find her, leading to a few amusing little scares and such.
The final episode is a rather action frenetic styled one. It opens with most of the group coming out of a beef bowl shop on a space station only to see the Yagami taking off out of port. It appears the Yagami, a Galaxy Police ship no less, is easily hijacked and controlled by a couple of young punks.
Or maybe it's just made so Mihoshi can use it.
The two hijackers, out to make their mark as the greatest gangsters in the universe, take off at high speeds. Ryoko gets Ryo-ohki into spaceship mode and everyone heads off to chase after them. Well, almost everyone. While the Yagami flies through space, they trip a few sensors and get picked up by the Galaxy Police net. And as the entire ships crew is wanted by the Galaxy Police (you remember, from that plot-thingy that was happening awhile ago), it looks like half the entire fleet is mobilized to chase after them at a moments notice.
Of course, Tenchi really isn't a heavily plot driven show to begin with, so to pick on it for filler episodes may not be entirely fair. Combined with the poor looking transfer though, this isn't a disc that I'll be revisiting soon.
Japanese Language,English Language,English Subtitles,Character Data,Conceptual Artwork/Ending Info
Toshiba TW40X81 40" HDTV, Pioneer 414 codefree DVD player, Sony STR-DE835 DD/DTS receiver, Monster component cable and Sony speakers.
Mania Grade: B-
Audio Rating: B+
Video Rating: C+
Packaging Rating: A-
Menus Rating: B+
Extras Rating: B-
Age Rating: 13 & Up
Region: 1 - North America
Released By: Geneon Entertainment (USA), Inc.
Running time: 75
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
Series: Tenchi Universe