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Exclusive review: Inu-Yasha:
Rumiko Takahashi's (Ranma 1/2, Maison Ikkoku, Mermaid Tales) new hit TV series in Japan
  Rating: PG
  U.S. Distribution Rights: Pioneer Entertainment
  Genres: Comedy, Fantasy

Pretty Sammy (OVA)
Alternate Title: Mahou Shoujo Pretty Sammy

Description:    Sasami Kawai is a 4th grader, a cheerful girl full of energy. One Day, she is sent on an errand to an old mansion and meets a strange lady named Tsunami who claims that she comes from a Magical Kingdom called Juraihelm. She asks Sasami to help make the Earth a better place by using the magical powers she can endow upon Sasami beginning her career as a Magical Girl. Her mysterious rival, another Magical Girl called Pixy Misa, as well as Ryoko and Ayeka who always fight against each other over Sasami's brother Tenchi, her mother who has her head completely in the clouds all the time... these wacky bunch of people only help the already wacky situations go worse, making Sammy's job even more difficult!

Overall Grade: 88.33% (B+)

The Magical Project S (TV) Review
The No Need for Tenchi! (Manga) Review
The Tenchi Forever!: The Movie 3 (Movie) Review
The Tenchi Muyo in Love (Movie) Review
The Tenchi Muyo! (OVA) Review
The Tenchi Muyo!: Mihoshi Special (OVA) Review
The Tenchi Universe (TV) Review
The Tenchi the Movie 2: The Daughter of Darkness (Movie) Review

  Reviewer #1: Mariela Ortiz
  Episodes reviewed: 1-3; Subbed
Grade: 90% (A-)
   Behold the magical girl Pretty Sammy, an AIC joke gone horribly, horrible wrong!! (At least that's the theory.) After cameo appearances in Tenchi specials, Sasami's magical alter ego got her own OVA. Unlike the later TV show (which effectively became shoujo), the OVA is much more straight parody of the genre, though still horribly cute.

The true highlight is the second volume of the series. The first mainly sets up and introduces the characters, especially in how their relationships differ from their Tenchi incarnations. The third is a little more dramatic than the others. But the second one is pure comedic joy, lampooning not just mahou shoujo, but a certain software giant many love to hate.

Probably the biggest drawback to this series is the need to included the entire Tenchi cast. Tenchi-Ayeka-Ryouko subplots seem to add little to the story, and can be distracting. However having Rica Matsumoto as Tenchi and Sasami's mom means THAT SONG makes another appearance, which is cute amusing. Of course the most important aspect of the show remains Ryo-ohki. Lots of cute cabbit scenes are enough to get me to watch anything.

  Reviewer #2: Zac Bertschy
  Episodes reviewed: 1, Subtitled
Grade: 85% (B)
   Oddly enough, AIC and Pioneer decided that the character of Sasami from the original Tenchi Muyo! series was popular enough to carry her own series; the result is Pretty Sammy, a mahou shoujo genre parody that's charming and witty. On face value, Pretty Sammy is yet other attempt by Pioneer to cash in on the incredible popularity of the Tenchi Muyo! cast of characters; after two wildly successful OVA series and a 26-episode TV series, anything else would simply seem like selling out. Unlike the aforementioned TV series, however, it seems as though a lot of creativity and good humor went into making Pretty Sammy. The production values are amazingly high, with gorgeous animation, and appropriately cute and dramatic music.

The story isn't too shabby either. Essentially following the still-amusing "alternate universe" scenario, Pretty Sammy takes all the familiar characters from Tenchi Muyo! and rearranges them to fit Sasami's world. This is executed with highly amusing results; half the fun of Pretty Sammy is seeing the old Tenchi cast interact in a new environment. This kind of scenario change adds an aire of freshness to the proceedings, and essentially makes everything old new again. For hardcore Tenchi fans, Pretty Sammy is already on your must-own list; for those who feel soured by less-than-stellar Tenchi sequels, the one you've been waiting for has arrived.

  Reviewer #3: Clyde Adams III
  Episodes reviewed: 1-2, subtitled
Grade: 90% (A-)
   This is a very funny, very cute, delightful, silly fantasy, highly recommended. The art, music, and production values are all of high quality.

The Pretty Sammy universe includes all the major Tenchi Muyo! characters. But this is a different universe, and some of the characters' relationships to each other have changed. Sasami, who here gains the unwanted powers and extra identity of Pretty Sammy, is now Tenchi's sister. Ryoko and Aeka are still competing for Tenchi's attention, but now they are all classmates at school, and all relatively minor characters now; Sasami/Pretty Sammy is the start.

The focus of the stories is on Sasami, her desire to live a normal life, her embarrassed reluctance to become the almost unbearably cute Pretty Sammy, and how he keeps being forced into that change by her nemesis, the evil magical girl Pixy Misa. Pretty Sammy may be a reluctant heroine, but once she's committed, she bravely faces the most terrifying villains, and she tries her very best to do the right thing.

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