Review - Urusei Yatsura (TV)

This will be a collecting point for my past anime reviews and future reviews. Please note that there will be the inevitable time references in these as they have been lifted from my old LiveJournal (I'll keep the existing ones there for now)

Review - Urusei Yatsura (TV)

Postby mistie710 » Thu Sep 30, 2010 12:45 am

So what am I doing writing a review of a series this old, on which I have written so much before? Simple, really. I have now watched the entire TV series from start to finish, including a marathon run of the last 69 episodes this past week!

The story revolves around one Ataru Moroboshi, possibly the wrold's unluckiest man and a skirtchaser of incredible magnitude. He is brought home one day to find a very large man with fangs, a horn and a claim on the planet Earth, but he has a get-out for this latter in that two people must play a game of tag (known as the "Oni-game" in Japanese - the show is packed with puns and plays on words as you might expect from Rumiko Takahashi). The person from Earth selected for the job is Ataru and the person from the Invader's home planet is a buxom young wench in a tiger striped bikini and boots called Lum. The game lasts ten days but, after nine days, Ataru still hasn't caught Lum (he didn't know that she could fly!) On that night before the final day of play, Ataru's long-suffering girlfriend, Shinobu, promises Ataru that she will marry him if he wins. Through sheer deviousness, that is exactly what Ataru does the following day and, having beaten Lum, he cries; "Now I can be married!" Lum mistakenly takes this as a proposal and the fun starts from there!

The television series goes on for a massive 195 half-hour shows and includes a number of side plots, some based on the original manga, others totally original, though the quality of production varies throughout the series. Some of the side plots become, in my view, quite wearing; an example is the story of the Fujinami family, father and daughter, the father being an annoyingly eccentric person who insists that his daughter is a boy and tries everything to stop her from discovering her femininity, even though she doesn't really stand a chance since she has no idea how to be a girl anyway. Another example is the ongoing familial struggle between Mendo Shutaro and his sister, Ryoko. I'm not saying that these stories are bad, but they get repeated more than once throughout the series. There are also some contrived charas that also get to be somewhat wearing such as Megane, the leader of "Lum's Stormtroopers", a group of sexually inadequate boys who set themselves up as some sort of protector of Lum, despite the fact that Lum has no problem protecting herself given that she can fire electric shocks.

The series was based originally on the 1979 manga of the same name, and spawned a number of OAVs and movies throughout its lifetime. Overall, I've enjoyed watching the whole series though I doubt that I shall ever do that again, or at least not in one shot!
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