It's about 9,500 words and nearly 54K characters.
So during the Ohayocon trip we went back to our rent-a-house and ending up
having a impromptu Tenchi 101 class if you will, of which, it's entirely too complicated to try and explain the vast Tenchi multiverse, and what pertains to what.
First off, realize that there are a large number of series and side material that has nothing to do with each other. Many authors were involved over a span of about 25 years and each more or less did their own thing. For the sake of our own sanity, we break down what is and isn't related by author mostly.
The original Ryo-Ohki "Kajishima-verse"
Note that this is in Japanese release date order, not in universe chronological order.
1st. off the original series: Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki OVA 1 (circa 1992) (Tenchi Dimension)
Created by Masaki Kajishima this covers Tenchi breaking into the family shrine and unsealing the "demon" Ryoko, bringing Ayeka to earth, and the battle with Kagato.
Katsuhito (grandpa) is the crown prince of Jurai, formally called Yosho.
2nd. Tenchi Muyo Ryo-Ohki OVA 2 (circa 1994) (Tenchi Dimension)
Here comes baby, the Juraian emperor and wives come to town, Tenchi wins by default against Seiryo, Yosho is revealed to be hiding his appearance with a hologram, the battle with Dr. Clay, Tokimi and Z are foreshadowed, all happens in OVA 2.
3rd. Tenchi Muyo! Mihoshi Special OVA (circa 1994) (Tenchi Dimension events as told by Mihoshi's warped brain using TM characters)
The cast is bored at the house and complains that Mihoshi is a has-been GP officer. Mihoshi recounts her awesome partner Kiyone and their amazing feats in the GP using the Tenchi cast. Pretty Sammy and Kiyone (green haired, not Tenchi's mother Kiyone) are introduced here. Some consider it non-canon, it's very much a comedy. I would consider it canon because there's too much tie in with Dual/PS coming up again. But it's a one off that was never discussed again, and Kiyone was retconned out of the OVA with Noike in OVA 3.
4th. Photon the Idiot Adventures (circa 1997) (Alternate Dimension)
A scientist's daughter is trying to escape from a galactic empire henchman (a total buffoon) and crashes on "Earth" - only to wake up from her stasis pod years later to become the wife of a small boy with amazing powers since he wrote on her forehead. They have an adventure across the desert planet fighting off the henchman and finding an ultimate robot that bears a striking similarity to those in Laputa.
5th. Dual! Parallel Trouble Adventure (circa 1999) (Various Alternate Dimensions)
A boy can see visions of a parallel world, and ends up being sent to that world by a mad scientist and his daughter. The parallel world is in the midst of a worldwide battle between the Rara Army with alien technology, and the EDF headed up by the alternate world version of the mad scientist. The main character is found to be the only male that can pilot the giant robots the two forces use to fight. The series is more comedy, food, and family oriented, with the war and merging dimensions set as a backdrop. Alternate dimensions and alternate people are a core theme which explains the foundation for the Tenchi verse as a whole. Kiyone (green haired) and characters from Pretty Sammy appear in the 14th final OVA episode, as well as the Japanese DVD and LD booklets.
6th. Tenchi Muyo! GXP (circa 2002) (Tenchi Dimension)
Seina Yamada has intergalactically bad luck which causes him to be recruited by the GXP, the universe's police and mail organization. Along the way Seina becomes a ship captain, picks up a crew of buxom women and aliens, gets involved with politics and space pirates, and there are quite a few cameos pointing back to Tenchi OVA. GXP leans heavily on lore established in Dual and the OVAs. Seina gets his own giant robot toward the end, that places him in line for the throne of Jurai. He marries about 8-10 women by the end. This was a pretty controversial show for the fan community and many hated it due to the odd humor and blatant fanservice.
7th. Tenchi Muyo Ryo-Ohki OVA 3 (circa 2003 - 2005) (98% Tenchi Dimension)
Tenchi finally returns, and he's immediately told he already has a fiancee, his mother's a whack job, he has a sister who's not much better, his father and grandpa are playing tricks on him, and there's a lot of politics and stupid all around. By the end of this section, the universe has been exploded, there's chousin "goddesses" controlling the dimensional "cake" basis for everything, we see new and returning characters from OVA 2 finally show up but are just as quickly dropped. There's a huge amount of narrative and backstory all shoved at the viewer at once, with no basis, unless you lived in Japan and kept up with all the books and doujin. This is also the only domestically released part of Tenchi where Petrea Burchard did not voice Ryoko, and that was a truly horrific mistake. Needless to say, a very controversial part of the series which, combined with GXP, caused many fans to leave entirely, or created a giant rift in the community.
8th. Tenchi Muyo: War on Geminar (circa 2009) (Photon's Alternate Dimension, based on char/events from Tenchi OVA Dimension)
Tenchi's half brother, created from the union of Tenchi's father and Rea (from the wedding special released after/as part of OVA 3) is sent to the world of Geminar by Washu and the other Chousin. There he basically establishes himself as a bad-ass young boy as he's been trained since birth in the Tenchi household. He ends up becoming a mecha pilot and indentured aide to Princess Lashara in the midst of a hostile takeover. The series draws very heavily on Photon lore, Tenchi, and some Dual.
Largely this series was a hit with fans, but it fell on it's face because a ton of money was spent as every episode was a OVA 45 min small movie. Very very little backstory is given for Kenshi, but a huge amount was covered in the doujinshi and novels in Japan. Some of which both pre and post series, you might prefer not to know.
9th. Tenchi Muyo Ryo Ohki OVA 4 (circa 2016? - unreleased)
Very little is known about this, other than it has been talked about in Kajishima's doujinshi for several years (hints). KM also published a series of "IF" doujinshi along side his usual ones, depicting what "might" happen, which consisted of Tenchi having children by every girl, including Ryo-Ohki, then his kids intermarrying with Seina's kids, out to about 4 generations, and absolutely nothing positive going on but politics and baby making into infinity pretty much. The anime was green lit mid 2015 and pretty much the fan community is either thumping their Kajishima incest bibles, or in great physical torment and can't stomach the situation at all, hating every moment this has existed.
Pretty much everything here has either backstory or continuations in doujinshi or novels. The OVA has 3 prequel novels and many doujinshi. GXP has many novels and doujinshi. Geminar has many doujinshi. Dual only had 1 doujinshi, but was popular enough to get some manga one shots and tie ins in a lot of early 2000s AIC material, the characters, much to fans chagrin, show up in some GXP material. Dual got a little concert with some of the singers. Photon had 1 doujinshi as well, but didn't have much staying power. Dual is more or less, the last of the good old style series, while Geminar is digestible if unfortunately laden with fanservice excuses.
Confused now? Good, Kajishima's universe is by far the most complex and messed up in the head of the various groups. Moving on....
The Hiroshi Negishi Universe:
Negishi directed and worked alongside Kajishima to produce the Tenchi TV or aka as the USA got it "Tenchi Universe" series.
1st. Tenchi TV aka Tenchi Universe 1995 26 Episodes
This is a spin off, wholly separate from the OVA, but it uses some of the same major themes. Here Ryoko isn't a created organism, but a real independent space pirate. She isn't the daughter of Washu. Kiyone the green haired partner of Mihoshi is introduced. Nagi the bounty hunter and her cabbit Ken-Ohki are present. The most well known section this is remembered for is the Time and Space Adventures where they mess up Washu's invention and go bouncing through imaginary worlds like Tenchi and Ryoko as gangsters. The guardians (Ayeka's logs) get their humanoid bodies here as well. There's a different Kagato that takes over the Jurai throne. Overall it was a well done, fun series, a very heart wrenching climax, it had a lot of throwbacks to manga style story telling, and is one of the more loved consistent parts of Tenchi Muyo.
2nd. Tenchi Muyo in Love 1 [Movie]
A evil space being sealed away in the GXP headquarters breaks free and goes back in time to kill off the Juraian bloodline so he won't be captured in the first place. Tenchi's reality begins to fade away and everyone has to jump back to the past in order to save Tenchi's mother Achika and father Nobuyuki before they are killed.
Very pretty movie, quite similar to the Ah! My Goddess movie, many fans consider Achika the only mother suitable for Tenchi, not the OVA mother "Kiyone" who turned out to be a clumsy fool and prankster.
3rd. Tenchi Muyo in Love 2: Tenchi Forever [Movie]
Ayeka and Ryoko finally demand Tenchi choose and he runs off into the forest near the shrine, only to be sucked up by a tree there. Everyone looks for Tenchi for months but he is gone. Tenchi has been whisked away to a inner dimension created by the spirit of Yosho's dead lover he left for earth with, but she died before landing. She and Tenchi live in a dream world set in the future where they two are lovers living together, while Tenchi is studying to become a painter. As Haruka's power is interrupted by Tenchi, they phase in and out of real town locations where Ayeka and Ryoko are searching, nearly without hope.
Tenchi Forever is another fantastic old style movie, and really does an excellent job with the musical score, as well as the character development. Ayeka totally breaks down in the bathroom of a diner they are working at while trying to find Tenchi. Ryoko supports her over and over again, just to give up after being rejected by Tenchi. Tenchi can't forget Ryoko, as he draws her outline over again not knowing who it is. Yosho has to deal with his past and confront Haruka. The closing scene and details following it are the basis for many Universe fans staunchly believing Tenchi ends up with Ryoko in the series. It has closure, and ends on a high note.
4th. Tenchi Muyo TMiL 2: Eternal Memory [Manga]
This is kinda sorta canon to TMiL, but no one is 100% sure if it is to be taken seriously. It details what Sasami was up to for large portions of TMiL2, going to Jurai and asking of Tsunami (not before seen in humanoid form). She also meets another young character and ends up asking Tenchi to stay with her forever, to which he replies in his "half-joking to a child way" sure! Sasami takes that as a marriage proposal and says she'll wait for him forever till she's grown and will capture his heart then.
There's no real trustworthy source for a Eternal Memory translation, it was actually abused and turned into a farce for a long time. It plays out more like a chunk of Pretty Sammy, set to TMiL 2 as the backdrop. So your mileage may vary, I'd just say ignore it honestly as it just muddles the waters if you're a Ryoko or Ayeka fan.
Interesting to note is that we later learned there were plans for a TMiL 3
5th. ??? Ai Tenchi Muyo! (circa 2014)
Ai (Love) Tenchi is sort of a complicated animal. Negishi was brought back on board at AIC to supposedly save Tenchi after AIC had hit hard times and Kajishima was too demanding. What he was allowed to do was do a partnership anime to tie into the tourism of a local city, and make it a series of 60 - 5 minute episodes (including a ED song and credits). Essentially Tenchi is inducted under a false ID as a teacher at an all girls school to do an investigation for Washu. Hi-jinks ensue, mostly with the girls of the school nearly raping him on several occasions. Eventually in the last 10 eps or so a much larger plot is revealed, alternate dimensions and time travel comes into play, stuff comes to a head.
The troublesome part is that it sounds like Ai was meant to take a fall and drum up fanfare for Tenchi coming back from the grave (or Kajishima land as it were). Negishi was handcuffed with the 5 minute restriction, and combined with having to introduce a whole new cast, ended up far short of what he intended. He tried to work with Kajishima who was brought in for an interview, who reportedly was rude and would barely talk to Negishi. Later the Ai backlash from Japanese fans, was used against Negishi, to remove him doing more to fix it (a movie was discussed), and he left Tenchi in utter disgust, feeling betrayed. He would later pop up doing a Saber Marionette continuation. Time passed and we found out the reigns to Tenchi were handed back to Kajishima to do with as he pleased (OVA 4).
The reason Ai goes with the Negishi Universe, despite the obvious creator ties, is that of the various Tenchi projects, Ai seems to draw from Universe the most. It's not explicitly stated it's part of Universe, and it even seems to oddly draw some from the OVA. So it's not 100% clear where it falls, or if it should just be a stand alone creation, which is how most fans treat it.
TenchiForum a US based fan community actually did the subbing for the show as it came out in Japan. So we essentially simulcasted it ourselves. You can find Ai on Youtube still.
The Tenchi in Tokyo Universe:
Tenchi in Tokyo was another spin off unto it's own. Interestingly it wasn't always meant to be that way, as the fandom discovered artwork that proved it was originally intended to be an extension of Tenchi Universe. Alas, it was changed along the line to become it's own thing. Tenchi decided to move to Tokyo to undergo training so he can more properly take care of the family shrine and get some peace to himself as his mountain home is already besieged with alien women. Of course this turns the dynamic on it's head and everyone has to get used to it (or not). It doesn't help that nearly Tenchi's first day in Tokyo he meets Sakuya and starts falling for her. Of course she's a shadow clone (believe it!) of a space psychic girl that was sealed away by a queen of Jurai, and now she's out for revenge. All the major histories are jumbled up again, like Washu is just a hired accomplice to Ryoko, and Ayeka and Yosho are no longer Juraian royalty. Outside of Toonami, particularly the promos, no one really paid Tokyo much attention. At the time it was a departure from the Ryo-Ohki formula, and people didn't like change (ironic now that we're desperate for it), so it got low reviews.
However, it did give us a look at Tenchi we hadn't seen before, a real relationship forming. Ryoko trying to be less pirate-y for Tenchi, Mecha Rabbit Ryo-Ohki, and a fairly complex villain. It's Tenchi with the dial turned way down on politics and more on character interactions, even if it was a little over the top slapstick wise.
Other than a couple novels, I don't recall there being any additional material for Tokyo. It really is the black sheep of the family, although Ai is now taking most of the heat.
The Hasegawa Universe:
Naoko Hasegawa was a scriptwriter for several of the initial Ryo-Ohki OVA episodes, and eventually broke off to do her own thing in a novel series. Also worthy of note is she's the one who created the Kiyone Makibi (Mihoshi's partner) character.
So she made a number of books:
01.) One Visitor After Another: Hexagram Of Love
02.) Change Is Life – 01
03.) Change Is Life – 02
04.) Tenchi’s Gone Insane?! – 01
05.) Tenchi’s Gone Insane?! – 02
06.) The Lord of Chaos
07.) Even a Monkey can Conquer the World
08.) The Kids’ Life
09.) Hawaii Vacation
10.) Midsummer’s Eve
11.) The Stable Bride
12.) Good Health Breathes Disaster
Of those, #10 Midsummer's Eve or better known as Manatsu no Eve or Tenchi the Movie 2 - Daughter of Darkness (1997 Movie), is the only one to have any sort of international release. Why they decided to release the 10th book as a movie, which barely stands on its own, no one really knows. They were probably desperate for content, and Japan being Japan, was much more familiar with the other book content.
Just recently in the last 2 years, has the TenchiForum group pulled off translating the 1st book, Hexagram of Love, so we got a little more information on how the universe sits from that. Jurai is by far not the untouchable super power of the OVA, Funaho and Kiyone play bigger roles. Tenchi is very inexperienced and raw. Ryoko is not invulnerable either. It really is a new start. You can also see Hasegawa making some subtle jabs at Kajishima here and there.
So Daughter of Darkness pretty much again starts with Yosho as a child on Jurai, and he befriends a little demon girl (or something, she's more like a furry magic smurf) who's brutally murdered by the Jurain guard. She pops back up and slaughters them all, only to be put down again. Ever since she resents Yosho, so many years later she wants to take it out on Tenchi. She gets a hair sample and creates a puppet daughter using her dna and his, which ends up in the house causing all kinds of chaos. Ryoko tries to kill her. During this Tenchi smacks Ryoko in anger, creating the "slap heard round the universe" as fans like to call it. The daughter fake is recaptured, fight ensues, stuff happens that doesn't make sense, the demon is banished, and the daughter is turned into a gem that Washu can eventually allow to grow into a baby anew, and roll credits of the baby growing up happy.
Make sense? No, didn't think so. So that's what you get for missing 9 books of back story. It's fairly reasonable to assume though that the daughter that is allowed to be reborn, continues into the remaining 3 books.
Lastly the final major group.
The Okuda Universe:
Hitoshi Okuda created two major manga series for Tenchi, which sadly never got an anime adaption. The first No Need for Tenchi spawned 12 volumes, and the latter The All-New Tenchi Muyo finished it off with 10 more volumes. These ran from 1994 to 2005, with some reprints, etc in between.
The Okuda manga is pretty great in an of itself, it's hilariously self aware, it takes big fat obvious sign holding jabs at Kajishima, it barrows from both the OVA and Universe, it manages to deal with very small personal stories and big galactic ones, while still giving you some arcs. It introduces things like the Mitsu a creature that feeds on the Jurain trees, giving them a natural enemy. Black Hawk Wings, to counter the Light Hawk Wings. The Jurain tree ship builders. More rivals for Washu. Consistent character growth. Stuff that you wouldn't think about, like Sasami becoming a renowned cook that makes cakes to support the household going up against a child Kagato rival. Mihoshi getting a driver's license. Funaho attacked by assassins. Ryoko getting her heart exploded trying to save Tenchi. A little girl's dying wish to Sasami/Tsunami. It's all there and more.
The sad thing is that the Okuda manga is quite hard to come by. Generally there's 3 or so volumes at any major convention dealers room. You can read it online though. Between the Okuda manga, and Universe, that is generally the bread and butter of the Tenchi fandom that isn't sold on Kajishima's fascination with boobs, politics, and all manner of reproductive organs.
The "Other Stuff"
So besides these main groups there's a few other things that don't quite fit, or I didn't want to clutter up things further with.
1. Paradise War - this is a 3 novel series that deals with a young man sent to an island, which happens to be populated with some the galaxy's princesses, etc.. 384th in line the throne, type thing. Jurai, all the usual suspects are all there. Oddly enough Seina Yamada from GXP is present as an older man with his 3 Fuku cabbits in tow. He seems to be the island guide / shuttle boat man. While I've worked on it some, we're not close to a proper translation as of yet. How closely it ties to the OVA universe isn't really understood. It was written by Kajishima.
2. There's several games, SNES, PS1, Saturn, PC-FX, out there, only two of them have any continuity to themselves, and that pretty much just introduces a fuzzy green haired GP protege to Mihoshi, who's also a real klutz. The SNES game got a fan translation and patch, as well as a custom cart reproduction, and is pretty fun to play.
3. Pretty Sammy 1995-1997 3 part OVA
Pretty Sammy is a separate universe story done up in the style of Sailor Moon, when the old magical girl stories were originally popular. From Wikipeda: Sasami Kawai is a cute young Japanese girl who is asked by magical queen-to-be Tsunami of Juraihelm to become "Magical Girl Pretty Sammy", a champion of justice. She is constantly harassed by Pixy Misa, an evil, but friendly magical girl created by a rival candidate for queen of the magical world, Ramia. Sasami is unaware that Pixy Misa is actually her best friend, Misao Amano, who herself is unaware of the transformation forced on her via hypnosis by Ramia's brother, Rumiya.
4. Magical Project S 1996-1997 26 Episodes
Project S was based on the Sammy OVA and expanded. Sammy as a whole I guess you could say was pretty popular for AIC. A lot of book material and tie ins came out of it. Again it ties back into the Mihoshi Special and Dual from the Tenchi Ryo-Ohki OVA.
5. Sasami: Magical Girls Club 2006 26 Episodes
This one almost isn't related it's so far a departure. The plot is largely Sammy, but the animation is vastly different and besides Sasami, Washu, Mihoshi, and Ryo-Ohki there are no Tenchi references really in it.
6. El Hazard Series:
El Hazard consists of 4 parts, only a couple being connected.
El Hazard the Magnificent World is an OVA, good plot, good animation, much more open adventure world-ish than Tenchi ever was, but expensive and hard to get ahold of. It takes itself pretty seriously, but a good entry point. Alternate worlds and dimensions, technology play a similar role like in Tenchi, Photon, or Dual.
El Hazard the Wanderers is a TV series, kinda similar to how Tenchi Universe was done it took the core elements, added humor and ran with it. Easily available through Rightstuf as Nozomi Entertainment bought the rights a long time ago. Kinda cheap and good. A worthwhile watch after Magnificent World 1 or 2.
El Hazard the Magnificent World 2 is a follow up spin off to the first OVA. Not particularly as good as the first, but it is a continuation.
El Hazard the Alternative World was a big departure from the other series, sending the cast to yet another world/dimension, this time much darker and militant. Not many people liked this one.
El Hazard doesn't tie into Tenchi, but it has some similar themes, there are a lot of cameos particularly from Ryoko or Pretty Sammy in Wanderers. There's been a handful of crossover comics, and EH was a decent seller that helped keep AIC afloat much like Tenchi.
Hiroki Hayashi the co creator and director on the first Tenchi OVA, also created the Magnificent World first series. So you could say they are sister series.
So now you know what's out there, and a have a thin idea of how it relates to each other on a surface level. So how would you watch this massive mess?
Tenchi Muyo Ryo Ohki OVA 1 and 2
Dual! Parallel Trouble Adventure
----Stop, do you want to stay with good classic anime or get into the new Kajishima "junk"?----
Tenchi Universe + TMiL 1 + TMiL 2 Tenchi Forever
Okuda Manga NNFT & ANTM
El Hazard Magnificent World (unrelated)
El Hazard The Wanderers (unrelated)
New Kajishima Junk:
(realize you're getting into family trees that look like this: http://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/ten ... 1201040846)
Tenchi Muyo Ryo-Ohki OVA 3
Tenchi Muyo War on Geminar
------Stop, do you want otherwise unconnected stories, or go back and finish?------
Tenchi OVA - The Mihoshi Special
Tenchi in Tokyo
Ai Tenchi Muyo!
Tenchi the Movie 2 - Daughter of Darkness
Pretty Sammy + Magical Project S
--------Stop, has your brain melted? Why did you do this to yourself? Still more you say?!--------
Hasegawa 01: Hexagram of Love
Tenchi Muyo 101 Secrets (not much of a translation out there)
True Tenchi Novels: Washu, Azusa, Yosho
Eternal Memory (ditto)
TenchiForum TenchiCast podcast episodes and interviews
Beyond this, to really get into the deep connections, particularly in the OVA, with what connects to what, all that massive amounts of interconnected information in the doujins particularly, the reasons most of us really don't like Kajishima (the guy flatly stated women had no purpose in life beyond breeding stock - for starters), you really have to talk to someone in the old fandom who's been around a while. There are people at TenchiForum that can handle that, or of course there's me. Although even then I'm sort of a mid tier oldy moldy, not the oldest.
If you want to know about the history of the Tenchi community, I wrote another pretty long piece a few years back on that too. viewtopic.php?f=20&t=503
If you want to see the panel we held at Ohayocon 2013 covering a good chunk of this with illustrations and more, it can be had here: https://www.youtube.c...
Lastly, I wouldn't trust Wiki entries that much, particularly the Tenchi Wikia. It's been the battle ground for years of people pushing their own views out as fact in edit after edit till one side or the other gives up.
As Uncle from Jackie Chan Adventures would say....
Onnnneeee Mooooooorre Thiiiiiiiing......
These series are licensed through Funimation and available on all the usual places, Hulu, Netflix, Crunchyroll, Funi's streaming page, etc etc etc.
Tenchi Muyo Ryo-Ohki OVA 1, 2, 3
Tenchi in Tokyo
Tenchi Muyo GXP
Tenchi Muyo War on Geminar
The movies Funi rereleased as well, but they are harder to find streaming.
They are under Funi's subscription service for sure, but they come and go else ware.
Tenchi Muyo in Love 1
Tenchi Muyo in Love 2 Tenchi Forever
Tenchi the Movie 2 Daughter of Darkness
Ai Tenchi Muyo you can find on Youtube altogether under the Tenchiforum TV channel.
Dual! and Photon haven't been in print since Geneon / Pioneer's golden days. DVD's are super rare.
Dual dub - http://www.dubzonline...
Dual Dub Alt - http://www.watchdub.c...
Photon Dub - https://kissanime.to/...
Photon Sub - http://www.goodanime....
Mihoshi Special - https://www.youtube.c...
Pretty Sammy will probably be around any of the sources I've already linked. It's not licensed in NA I'm pretty sure except for Sasami Magical Girls Club, and that is also through Funimation.
Okay okay, one one more thing.
For the sake of melting brains, I'll try to unravel some of the Kajishima-verse lore.
The Kajishima-verse should be thought of as a infinite vertical layer cake. Each layer is it's own dimension. Some layers are unique, some blend into each other, some are nearly identical and right next door to each other, some are far apart and very different.
If you are familiar with the butterfly effect principle, Steins;Gate, or Jet Li's movie The One, this is pretty similar.
In this case, Tenchi Muyo Ryo-Ohki would be considered the center layer, and all offshoots or side stories are varying degrees of layers away, except for those that actually take place in the same layer (kinda like ingredients).
The in universe reasoning for this is at the beginning, 3 Chousin (it was translated to goddesses in the dub, I'd prefer high dimensional beings) popped into existence and a single question entered their minds. We are all powerful, but how did we come to exist? So they hypothesized that there was a higher power than themselves. These 3 were Tokimi, Washu, and Tsunami, the sisters.
Ultimately they decided on creating the infinite multiverses in a effort for random chance to create a being that could tap into their creation energy power, supposing that being may be able to surpass them and fulfill their question. This power manifests as Light Hawk Wings in lower dimensions (ours is the 3rd btw).
So Tokimi chose to become the destroyer or agent of chaos and create wars, strife, etc.
Washu traveled about and ended up captured in a planet sized sphere where the aliens tapped her power into 3 gems, created artificial lifeforms called bioroids, gave each a gem for power. Eventually one of the Bioroids went insane and the other two were tasked to kill it. One died, the other two fought and killed each other. In the last moment the insane one let out a cry that alerted Tsunami, who came and reclaimed 2 of the gems. Washu remained in the planet prison for thousands of years until it deteriorated and she escaped. She reclaims one of her gems from one of the dead Bioroids.
Tsunami in the meantime, had picked out the most powerful space pirate clan, made a pact with the leader to support and power them, and formed Jurai. The original world tree on Jurai, the original space ship, and the being, are all called Tsunami. Juraian trees are sentinent, form a bond with a partner for life, and their power and capabilities decrease as the generations get further out. Essentially the connection back to Tsunami's power is weaker each successive generation. Those with 1st Gen trees are generally highly ranked in Jurai, such as the Emperor, etc. Both the Emperor's wives have a 2nd Gen with the unique ability to merge to create a single ship with the power of the 1st Gen.
So after Washu is released, she determines her path is wrong and decides to strip herself of power, seal her memories, and live as a mortal from scratch. This results in her eventually going to the Jurai Academy and being the galaxy's number one genius. During her time there she is friends with Naja a female scientist. Both of them play frequent horrible tricks on Clay, who is smitten with Washu. Somewhere in the events Washu and Naja move the Academy out from under Jurai and make it independent.
Washu eventually meets Mikamo, a member of the Kuramitsu family, and they have a child Mikumo. Due to social status and political pressure Mikamo takes the baby and flees. Washu is utterly heartbroken and vows to never deal with the affairs of adults again, and changes her form to that of a child "Little Washu." Washu in anger goes to the planet where Mikamo is, intending to take her child back, but stops when he sees he is happy, and returns to the academy. Naja helps Washu create two artificial children from programmable matter, called Masu. One child presumably dies creating the giant crater known as "Washu's Pore"
In case you were wondering, yes Mikumo makes Mihoshi and a chunk of her relatives great+ grandchildren of Washu.
Naja dies or goes missing after a pirate attack, and Washu is again grief stricken. She creates a clone who is much more ambitious, called Kagato. Kagato helps create Ryoko and Ryo-Ohki, although Washu uses her ovum with the Masu to create a daughter. Both Ryo-Ohki and Ryoko were created with the idea in mind that they could harness the gems power and gain equal status through them as a Chousin.
Kagato helps create the Souja battleship, originally intended to help look for galactic artifacts. He betrays Washu, seals her away in the shadow dimension in the ship for over 5000 years, and uses Ryoko as his slave. He claims all of Washu's inventions as his own and scours the universe for the secrets of power and that of Jurai and the gems. Somewhere during this period he increases in disgust of women to the point he strips himself of his female traits creating a small girl Kagato and dumps her on a planet while a space battle rages overhead. Evil hermaphrodite Kagato continues to abuse and manipulate Ryoko and Ryo-Ohki up through where he tasks her to attack Jurai and the subsequent crash on earth.
Prior to the Ryoko/Jurai battle, a young not yet Emperor Azusa had fought against Kagato and lost, fleeing to Earth where he met his first wife Funaho. There's quite a bit of backstory with Seto and Azusa growing up as well.
Moving on to Jurai the trees are housed in a special chamber only accessible through one elevator shaft, which only works when a new partner is joined to a tree. You are not selected so much as called or summoned. Only your tree will react to you and there is a bonding process that takes some time before partner and tree are sync'd.
There are several tiers to this room, and only if you are not called by a tree of that level can you continue to a higher generation tier.
Mitsuki, a white haired woman was very special to Azusa as a teenager (lovers) and eventually entombed herself in her tree when she died, and left the tree to Azusa. He named it Kirito.
Funaho bore Azusa a son Yosho, and Misaki bore him Sasami and Ayeka. Yosho could not handle the pressure of Seto, the politics, and having to marry his half sister Ayeka. Yosho was also a bit of a mommy's boy. It didn't help matters that he developed feelings for Misaki as she'd constantly visit his room. Seto advised he go to the Academy under another name, and he did so. There he met Airi (GXP/OVA 3) and eventually she became pregnant with his child in secret, which yielded a girl Minaho.
Yosho was not aware of the child as far as we know, at least initially. Seto and Airi at least, did know where Yosho ended up, even if Funaho didn't get notes from her son.
When Ryoko hit Jurai, it was at a period when most of the fleet's major power ships (1st Gen, 2nd Gen) were away. So Yosho took the opportunity to run away and use his 1st Gen tree to push Ryo-Ohki back. They fought all over space, eventually crashing on Earth and Yosho used the sword Tenchi-ken (Washu's gems captured by Tsunami) to cut off Ryoko's gems (Washu's), and sever her connection to Kagato. He sealed her body and astral spirit to the cave, and over centuries established the Masaki Shrine in order to keep watch over her.
It's also worth noting that Yosho only loved Ayeka as a sister and could not announce Airi as his existing love, was again due to politics. So much so that the child would have been killed if the people of Airi's planet knew she had a Juraian child. Yosho also did not want a power struggle for the throne of Jurai, being that it would come down to the 2 children then. So he tried to effectively hide.
Yosho met a Earth girl Kasumi and protected her from Ryoko's attack initially on Earth,
and they married. That union created Noboyuki (Tenchis father). It also somewhere along the line birthed Kiriko Masaki (GXP) and her brother Kai
After Kasumi died, Yosho married Airi in a common law marriage, and had a 2nd child, Kiyone Masaki. (Evidently they got back in touch and commuted from Earth and the GP Academy secretly.)
Kiyone Masaki married Noboyuki and they had Tennyo and later Tenchi. Kiyone died when Tenchi was a child. Ryoko who had been sealed in the cave watched over Tenchi for years and grew attached to him, even if she couldn't interact. Tenchi always felt a presence there however.
Now we have the events of Tenchi Muyo Ryo-Ohki OVA 1 and 2.
Time skipping forward to the events of GXP....
Seina Yamada has terrible luck, etc etc. He's unaware of the Masaki lineage and intergalactic ties, they are simply a large influential family in the shrine area. Seina grew up knowing Tenchi and Kiriko.
The events in GXP are fairly self explanitory, except that it is the first introduction to the political schemer Seto. Seto has a very long history of manipulating and pairing up characters to suit her power ambitions. She also enjoys stomping out other pirate guilds, as of course Jurai was once a pirate guild, and no competition can be tolerated.
Much of GXP's tech is built upon things first introduced in Dual. Like the tree bonding, the core unit, limiters, the tree's having a voice only the partner can hear, inter dimensional travel, even a lot of the sound effect library is the same. GXP also introduces "The Idol" mecha which initially looks almost identical to ZINV in Dual. Later it is covered by the Jurain royals that the mecha has a 1st Gen tree seed powering it, placing Seina in line for the throne. They inquire of Tsunami (being) and find out that 2 seeds were given to an intergalactic traveler millennia ago and then lost, and the Idol is one such seed. Obviously the other seed is ZINV in Dual, but we'll get to that. Noteworthy that Jurain tech (ie Tsunami) and Washu tech (Ryo-Ohki/Ryoko) are compatible because the same power backs both (Chousin).
At the end of GXP the "Seto Scouts" maids all hijack Seina at his wedding, and pretty much rape him to force a marriage, so he's politically tied to their star systems, so he has to get involved in their conflict. So he marries everyone under duress. Though Seto had it planned all along.
Skipping ahead to OVA 3....
Tenchi finds out he has a sister, Tennyo who looks exactly like his mother. Seto shows up and announces Tenchi has a fiancee via arranged marriage long long ago, which just so happens to be Seto's adopted daughter. Tenchi's mother is revealed to be a quack.
Airi shows up out of the blue. Tenchi fights Z
Z was a child of another universe, that went to war with his parents against another civilization that was trying to kill Tokimi. This all was known to have been put together by Tokimi. Parents died, in his final moments Z produces light hawk wings, Tokimi captures him. He becomes her "champion" or selection for likely candidate to the answer the Chousin seek. He protects the "temple" or physical location Tokimi resides.
Z resents Tokimi immensely due to her experimentation taking away his family and his life being a bloody battle. So by extension he wants to mess with Tenchi, being the target of the Chousin's affections and interest. Tokimi commands him to not interfere, but he tampers with a message from Mihoshi to her brother, leading him to go crazy and bring the GXP weapon ship Chobimaru to Earth to kill Tenchi. Ultimately this fails and the timeline is reset. Z is turned back into a child and sent "to the place where he will be the most happy" to live again. Some theorize Z may become Kenshi (Geminar), but this is not yet proven. Future Noike/Kagato (w/Fuku) instead of Z then re-sends the fake message from Mihoshi, and sets events in motion again, but without Z's interference.
Seto's adopted daughter Noike is both part of the GP and Jurai (via Seto), I'm going to copy a chunk here, because I really can't explain it any better.
Speaking of female little girl Kagato that was left on the planet, summarily picked up by Tenchi during his time jump after Z cut him, and dropped the girl back into the time stream....
Afterwards, Tenchi was pulled back to the present and she drifted off into some other point in time. The little girl was found by the woman who Noike knows as her mother. In an attempt to convince her boyfriend that the child was his to keep him around, Noike's mother had Dr. Clay perform illegal modifications to regress her back into a baby. As a result of the procedure, female Kagato's consciousness split in two; the personality of the white haired girl saved by Tenchi, and a new personality who became Noike. The little girl's consciousness reverted into astral form while the amnesiac Noike consciousness kept the physical body, the latter taking control while the former did things subconsciously. It would also seem that Noike's mother genetically modified Noike's hair to be the same color and texture as hers to further convince her boyfriend that she was their child.
Sometime later, Noike was placed into an orphanage by her mother who didn't want a child to interfere with her relationship. In the orphanage, she worked hard to take care of the other children and even worked in the fields in order to give everyone fresh assortments of food. However, for most of her life, Noike was tormented with thoughts of what tragedy her mother had to endure in order to abandon her so.
In adulthood, Noike joined the military, but eventually left to be trained at the Galaxy Police Academy and worked her way to becoming a Detective 2nd Class with Mihoshi Kuramitsu as her partner. There was one instance during her tenure in the G.P. that had Noike confront her past. While investigating a simple traffic accident, Noike ran a genetic I.D. check on a woman involved in the incident and found that it was the mother who abandoned her. Noike's mother proceeded to tell her the story of her abandonment and pleaded with her to let her go because she got "a good man." Noike came to terms with who her mother was and moved on.
Noike often has dreams of herself as a little girl being rescued by a mysterious "big brother" who she realizes is Tenchi, not knowing that the dreams are actually her subconscious memories of their very first meeting. Also unbeknownst to her, Z was able to watch the goings on of Tenchi's house through her eyes.
Dr. Clay, being very arrogant, had a habit of placing his mark on all of his work, and put his seal on the cells of female Kagato, which, after she reverted to astral form, prevented the two personalities from fully merging and becoming whole. Dr. Clay's seal could also be used as surveillance to see through Noike's eyes, allowing Z to watch Tenchi. In the end of OVA 3, Washu removed the programming and female Kagato fully merged with Noike after telling her that they should try their best in regards to their love for Tenchi and saying that they should have dinner and take a bath with him again.
Therefore, Noike falling in love with Tenchi was a fairly simple process, as female Kagato desired to be with her "big brother" again after he saved her.
It's worth noting that Seto didn't care if Noike actually loved Tenchi or not. She sent her there to be a spy and control the household as she feared the Tenchi house as the largest consolidation of powers in the universe, that could become it's own army. She needed an agent on the inside.
Lastly concerning the OVA 3 special, Rea and Noboyuki get married.
This is overseen by Tokimi and the whole gang oddly enough. Eventually she will have a child, Tenchi's half brother Kenshi.
Moving on to the events of Geminar.....
First off we have to back up. A lot of Geminar's history is explained in the one clip where the scientist is captured/speaking with Doll and relating the story about giant robot Sekijin and artificial humans (bioroids) bred for combat to be the best. The events got out of control and the church was established. Note that this church, worships Tokimi and speaks to her.
Also consider that most of the main characters besides Kenshi, have name ties back to characters in Photon. Their technology, such as the pen circuits, all is from Photon. It's very heavily implied that Geminar is the Photon planet, just a pretty long time in the future.
Rea is one of the Bioroids or artificial humans, and she was sent specifically to the Tenchi dimension to mate and have her powerful offspring sent back to Geminar.
Kiyone Masaki (Tenchi's mom) found Rea and brought her into the household, taught her to cook, etc. By the time of Rea's marriage, she knew of their intergalactic ties. Rea had Kenshi and loved him, but was split over her mission to send him to Geminar. The Tenchi house insanely enough, was pretty much "Pfft, he's a Masaki, we'll train him to be super man by the time he's old enough to go" and that's just what they did. Everyone contributed to train him, experiment on him, enhance him, teach him foraging and survival tactics, etc, while Tokimi and the Chousin were essentially the all seeing eye back home.
Washu hypnotized Kenshi, and they teleported him to Geminar one night. Pretty much Sasami, Ryo-Ohki, Rea, and Tenchi were the only opponents to the idea.
So the events in Geminar happen, Doll / Mexiah is a Bioroid as well. Rea Second / Neizai One / Ulyte is also a Bioroid. Rea Masaki is a Bioroid, which curiously the scientists recounting of the final battle mentions there being 3 most powerful Bioroids.
Sadly Geminar doesn't end there. There's a pretty large amount of extra content about parents and many other people no one really cares about in the doujinshi. Ultimately Kenshi is setup for a political marriage with Chiaia Furan's mother, despite everyone else's (including Kenshi's) protests. They get busy, with the Geminar and Tenchi casts onlooking like a spectator sport. They have a baby.
Without going back into IF and OVA 4, this is pretty much where the current canon Tenchi lore stops. GXP was continued in more that 13 novels, Paradise War falls in after that. There are some doujinshi that talk about the next century where Tenchi's son revives a dead Jurain on Earth's moon, and they hook up and go off exploring the galaxy looking for artifacts. But we really don't know if that even applies anymore due to IF and the other doujins.
The Masaki / Tenchi, grand theory that there is a harem field or something is more or less somewhat proven by GXP. Basically Tenchi and the other guys have charisma pumping out in 50 gallon barrels. So if you want a stupid explanation to a stupid trope, there it is.
Dual... to cap this off. Is unique in that everything in the series is talked about or discussed from the view of Earth people that don't know any better. The Juraian battleship that shows up, is indeed one. ZINV being related to the Idol, is a thing. The characters though don't understand that, so they would speak of it as Jurain tech.
What we learned through the one doujinshi we got, was that D's people were a space farring race, kind of like gypsies, that were chased out of their homeworld by pirates (keep this in mind). They ended up settling on earth in a water and standstone type city, with robot guardians and big spires that formed a shield wall for the city (anyone thinking Disney's Atlantis here?)
The thing to remember here is that Jurai was a pirate clan, they got their 1st gen ships early on and began wiping out other people groups and pirates. So it's very probable the "interstellar traveler" that gave them the other tree seed, did so out of pity or wanting them to have a way to protect themselves. However the Juraian's came across it, and took it as a threat to them, and hence began the chase and subsequent siege of D's people.
So the Juraian tree battle ship found them and used their robot HIMC to siege the city. D apparently believed the tree ship was after the ZINV unit, and took it with the Artifact Warship into space, only to be shot down by the battleship. Somehow on the way down they got lost, or both ships were damaged, but the result was D was brought into ZINV's head to have her body in stasis and rebuilt. The warship crashed in what became Yamato City, and City Hall was built on top of it.
The battleship buried itself at sea with only a small exit on top above the water.
It's conjecture, but fair to assume any survivors went abroad or tried to find the warship, ending up becoming part of the native human population. Kumu, the battleship's AI (much like Azaka or Kamidake, or the ball that scolds Ayeka in the start of the OVA) takes command over the ship and keeps it hidden.
Fast forward to Dual Ep 1.... Masaki Yotsuga finds a plate artifact and in different dimensions, one he throws it away and in another he keeps it and takes it home to his pregnant wife. Presumably Kazuki is born and plays with it, gaining a ability or connection to the parallel world.
Simultaneously, in the dimension where war breaks out, a younger Ken Sanada and Hiroshi Rara find the crashed artifact. Ken makes an incomplete copy of the data found there, and would later form the EDF to oppose Rara. Rara finds a location of the battleship, and goes off to capture it, finding a treasure trove of mecha and technology.
He with his manipulative wife Ayuko start a world war, which is sanctioned by the UN as territory battles rather than all out war. At one point in time the EDF had a Europe branch evidently, but we're only shown the Japanese branch.
The Core Robots Sanada creates are tied to a Core Unit that reads the life sympathy or will power of the pilot through the hand orbs. If a pilot is incapacitated then the core unit ejects and flies back to base. Oddly enough, because D's people were afraid of the destructive power of men piloting, they limited their systems so only females could pilot. This seems to be a carry over as well from Kumu instilling fear in her or her people. The "Original" robot is just that, an unaltered original mech with much better specs than the knock offs Rara and Sanada were producing.
D herself actually had several bodies. Her original was found in ZINVs head piece. Sanada found her and tried 4 clone bodies to attach her astral body or soul to, finally ending up with the 4th or D. She destroys this body in ramming the Warship into the Battleship, and transfers herself to the new recreated body ZINV created in his chest seed chamber. The last could be considered the same or another one, in that Dee has a all human body by the 14th episode.
Dual itself makes a crack at the Tenchi-verse, by Inspector Yamano pleading with Kazuki to think about what would happen if they were visited by aliens from another planet someday, if he'd like for old bald Rara to be the representative of the human race.
Kazuki feeling heavy and not being able to pilot ZINV properly is an effect of him not having completed bonding completely (see GXP).
The light hawk wings, dimensional travel, and more are evidence of ZINV tapping into Tsunami's power of creation.
The counterpart confusion with there being a Mitsuki Sanada and a Mitsuki Rara, as well as Hiroshis, Kens, and Ayuko creates an issue with there being no Kazuki in the B dimension of Dual. However this is explained if you consider that Kazuki is not ZINV, but either does not exist period (not born yet, etc), or he isn't a Kazuki "yotsuga." By this I mean we have other evidence from GXP, and in Dual itself showing that you can have a different parent or name, and still exist in a different form. Commander Sanada only said that they searched for other Kazuki Yotsugas, and didn't find any.
GXP continues this theme in the novels, when Seina's data becomes a hologram self aware in the GP mainframe, and meets up with a Mitsuki and Ken Ranada, which act and look exactly like their Dual counterparts.
In the final OVA episode of Dual, Final Frontier, the gang retrieves ZINV and wants to go off to space, singing about galaxy space rangers, and briefly Kiyone Makibi (Universe or Mihoshi Special, or Sammy) and a handful of other Pretty Sammy characters are seen in the street. This coupled with Pretty Sammy vs. Dual comics in all the DVD and LD booklets, as well as a fair amount of crossover material in paperback, leads me to strongly suggest the Tenchi OVA ties to Sammy through Dual.
Speaking to parallel dimensions a moment, we consider Dual to detail several.
A. The initial timeline the show starts on, we can say this one Masaki Yotsuga throws the artifact away.
B. Masaki Yotsuga keeps the artifact. This is where Kazuki and Mitsuki live at the beginning.
C. The warring dimension with the EDF and Rara Army.
D. The dimension everyone ends up in at the very end.
So I want to propose a theory, not a fact. That Dual can have two endings depending on how you interpret it.
Firstly we know that 1st Gen trees are vastly powerful, capable of teraforming or destroying a whole planet. However we don't know that they can create a world, much less a entire populated dimension on their own. They can create forest creatures, and bodies for people, but not souls.
So the inconsistency I find is in dimensions B and C merging, and Kazuki/Mitsuki claiming ZINV created a new dimension to their desires, doesn't make sense.
It makes more sense, to assume that either everyone and everything died and went away when the worlds merged, and we're seeing simply another dimension where they all think the previous events happened.
- or -
ZINV transported everyone to another dimension in the infinite layer cake that was just similar enough, and they ended up merged with existing people there, causing a sort of split personality / deja vu effect. This seems the most likely, because Ayuko and Akane Yamano are now sisters. The crazy thing is that now you have an entire planet second guessing their own memories and relationships. But all in all, it would be within ZINV's realm of potential power.
So while there is still even more in this crazy universe that can be discussed, I'm going to leave it at that. A good debate is always welcome, so form your own conclusions.
supported by those larger than us. But we dream... of the day when we will eventually
blossom under the wide open sky.