The season 1 finale of Urusei Yatsura is given over entirely to the Tomo-1 Queen Contest teased last week. Seemingly entirely arranged by Ataru, it’s a multi-faceted competition that draws upon the myriad skills and specialties of its five finalists: Lum, Shinobu, Ran, Sakura, and Ryuunosuke. None of them are especially enthusiastic about participating, but a 150,000 yen prize is nothing to sneeze at.
The challenges range from “guess what’s in the box” (Ten with a watermelon, guessed by Ryuu) to bottomless ramen bowls (won by noted glutton Sakura), culminating in a five-woman final battle in which everyone dons wrestling boots and swimsuits (though Ryuu eschews a bikini top for the traditional binding). Knowing she’s at a strength disadvantage, Ran kisses Ryuu, Shinobu, and Sakura, sapping their energy.
That backfires spectacularly, as the five women aren’t fighting each other per se, they have to go up against five wild beasts from the local zoo (Ataru ensured the event was heavily promoted and full of advertisements). For some reason, the beasts are anthropomorphic, otherwise they’d tear our girls to bits.
When Sakura gets ensnared in an Anaconda’s grip, Lum buys time with her electro-kicks for Ran to re-kiss everyone she kissed and give them back their superhuman strength. The battle finishes with all five women teaming up to K-O all five beasts.
Then, curioulsy, the judges determine that the result of the Queen Contest is a five-way-tie, due in part (or rather mostly) because they forgot to keep score as the battle royale got more chaotic. Ataru presents the consolation prize: 30,000 yen worth of takoyaki waffles, and then all the series’ characters come out of the woodwork to join the lunacy. Even Kurama, who hasn’t been seen in months, makes an appaearance.
At the end of the day, the one to profit the most is Ataru, thanks to all the kickbacks he got from the businesses he advertised throughout the contest. As he counts his money, Lum voices her frustration, and Ataru ends up tripping and almost falling straight into a kiss with Lum. Their lips are only inches apart before Ataru withdraws.
Before Lum can get her Darling to declare her the “Queen of his heart”, a still-furious Sakura and Shinobu track him down to beat the stuffing out of him for everything he made them go through. As they chase him into the sunset, with Lum taking flight to join the pursuit, the sun sets on Urusei Yatsura, but only for now.
After the credits, Ataru and Lum announce a Part 2 will air in 2024. As it’s been a great-looking diversion for these last twenty-three weeks, I see no reason not to tune back in!