Two of the most popular Tenchi universe characters are introduced in this episode: Sasami, and the all too-cute Ryo-ohki, whom we discover looooves carrots, and is also the offspring of Ryo-ohki, Ryoko's former ship. (With systems like that, who needs a shipyard?) The cute little cabbit is probably the nicest merchandising spin-off to ever emerge from a show, animated or otherwise, anywhere in the world. (If you have kids over five, or just like stuffed toys, get one. It's worth it!) Ryoko's announcement that she and Tenchi are about to be parents is one of the funniest scenes I've seen in the entire series -- especially when Nobuyki congratulates Tenchi for his supposed deed. Much of the story centers around Ayeka's inner feelings for Tenchi, and her resignation that she must fulfill her duties to the crown. Neither Takada Yumi or Orikasa Ai are Oscar material, but they do a fair job, and the script, while a tad melodramatic, does set the mood effectively, especially in the final scenes while onboard Sasami's and Ryoko's ships. Ayeka's Theme, a very introspective and mournful piano piece, is used throughout to complete the mood. But you know that there's no way that the show is going to let three central characters waltz our of Tenchi's life that easily. And sure enough, it's carrots to the rescue! - AN
Character introductions continue with Sasami and Ryo-ohki both entering the picture in this third episode of the TV series. Things continue to be extremely light-hearted, very tongue in cheek and slapstick; this is definite not a series for deep thought. Still, we see that Ayeka at least is not indifferent towards Tenchi despite what she may say, especially shortly before departure on Sasami's ship when she's off alone. Despite teasing from Sasami and Mihoshi regarding her feelings towards Tenchi when they are leaving earth, she cannot confess her feelings. (Gotta wonder how Sasami dug out that photo of Ayeka and Tenchi from Ayeka's luggage though!) Ayeka explains later on however that she has a duty as the first princess of Jurai to maintain the customs of her people, and she cannot remain on earth indefinitely. Still, the relationship being developed between Tenchi and Ayeka is very gentle and sweet and is a nice change from Ryoko's character and the sheer chaos that normally reigns.
Ryo-ohki's introduction, much like in the OAV series, starts with Ryoko teasing Ayeka with an egg and claiming it as her child with Tenchi, and the rest of the folks don't help matters in this case pouncing on the egg as Tenchi's child. Very tongue-in-cheek, Ryo-ohki literally pops into the scene after her egg is accidentally dropped and quickly becomes acquainted with carrots. Needless to say, the eventual errr extended stay of Mihoshi, Sasami and Ayeka on earth was very cutely done with Ryo-ohki going after the carrot Sasami was carrying. More interesting and rather fitting in a way however, is the final scene with the gang around a campfire having sweet potatoes again, and while Ayeka and Ryoko start arguing, Sasami and Tenchi feed one another sweet potatoes instead. While in the OAV series, we get the hint that Sasami really likes Tenchi (despite her age -- not to mention she's the one who ends up fishing him out of the bath every time something happens...), who's to say what will happen in the TV series yet? -JYN