"I'll tell you what I love!! I love perfection, and my technology is perfect! That's what I love!!"
Dr. Clay (Ｄｒ．クレイ, Dokutā Kurei) is an antagonist from OVA 2 of Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki. He also appears in the True Tenchi Muyo! novel, "Washu", and the Tenchi Muyo! GXP novels.
Clay was a fellow student and later colleague of Professor Washu Hakubi at the Galaxy Academy, in the Dept of Philosophy, and was highly jealous of her superior intelligence and renown. They met shortly after Washu came to the Academy, and he tried to bully Washu as an older student, until one of the teacher's showed up, raving about Washu's talent. Clay was taken aback by this, though he never seemed to forgive Washu for her upstaging him. The two, at one point, competed for the Galaxy Academy's director's chair, but Washu won out (Clay would claim Washu sabotaged his chances by substituting a raunchy porn tape for his presentation, while Washu claims that it was because Doctor Clay was a "bastard"). As a result, Clay had to settle for the post of head of the graduate school. He eventually left his position, swearing vengeance on Washu and the whole universe.
At some point, he came into the employ of a mysterious and powerful extra-dimensional being known as Lady Tokimi. For the next 20,000 years, Doctor Clay wandered the galaxy, doing certain services for Tokimi, such as moving entire galaxies, while also performing many criminal activities. One of his known crimes was stealing the Shunga, the Galaxy Police's newest battleship and attaching it onto his own immense vessel. In OVA 2, Tokimi allowed him to bring Washu to her, in exchange for the rule of a single galaxy.
To this end, Clay had his robot Zero kidnap and replace Washu's daughter, Ryoko, completely duplicating her appearance, powers, and even memories. However, Zero also did something she was supposed to be incapable of: she copied Ryoko's emotions for Tenchi Masaki, which led her to defy her creator.
Zero was unable to capture Washu, however Washu came to Clay herself to reclaim Ryoko. Clay's ambitions for Washu, as he explains, go beyond simple vengeance and deliverance to Tokimi. Although Zero was able to copy Ryoko's memories and emotions, she was unable to make a perfect copy of the gem that gives Ryoko her power. Clay was baffled as to why this gem was impossible to duplicate, even with his own technology. As he explains to Washu why he wants to explore the gem, "... I don't know anything about it! I don't even know if it really exists or not.." He then has a flashback of Zero discussing her interaction with Lady Tokimi: "Her very existence is impossible, even though she was present right there in front of us". It is here Clay begins to realize the similarities of Tokimi and the gems, perhaps even their true natures.
When the tables turn on Clay, he launches his spaceship's self-destruct sequence and escapes. The ship begins to destroy itself by forming a black hole, however Tenchi is able to dissolve it by forming the Light Hawk Wings and saving his friends. Clay witnesses this and is eager to share this experience to Tokimi, but is caught when the spaceship Ryo-Ohki emerges and stops him.
In the end, Clay was arrested by Galaxy Police detective Mihoshi Kuramitsu, and the dying Zero was assimilated with Ryoko by Washu. Sometime after his arrest, Tokimi's servant D3 modified the memories of both Clay and Zero (now merged with Ryoko) to conceal Tokimi's existence.
In the GXP Novels, Clay was broken out of prison by the Shank Guild and the shadow GXP group in order to study and steal the secrets of Fuku and the Kamidake II. He discovers Miki's astral in Shank's system and strikes a bargain with her in order to help her escape. She hands over data she has collected about the Shank Guild's research (unknowingly giving him info on an old way to break through a Light Hawk Wing's defenses and other valuable technological advances). He fulfills his part of the bargain by helping to transfer her astral, as well as those of D and Kirche, into the clones of Fuku. He escapes to the neutral territory of Racepshi and becomes involved in events happening in the Renza territory.
Personality and Traits
Judging from True Tenchi Muyo! Volume 3: Washu, Dr. Clay has always been very irrationally jealous of those who show even an ounce more knowledge than he does, such as Washu or her friend, the brilliant Naja Akara. He was also quite the brown-noser and immediately stopped his antagonization of Washu and Naja when a superior professor approached them, Clay switching from pest to kiss-ass. Having long suffered imagined, and occasionally intentional, ridicule from Washu and Naja has resulted in a person with a firm belief that "women are trouble". At the same time, Clay is degenerate, voyeuristic pervert, with an 'appreciation' for a 'well-endowed' female form (as demonstrated by the design of his ship, statues on his ship's bridge, and the fact that, while he held Ryoko captive, he forced her to stay naked in a large Erlenmeyer flask-esq container).
He possesses an immense ego and has great tendency of labelling or marking his work with his own initial "ク" (ku) logo, including his own hat. This show of hubris is subsequently his own downfall; Washu wound up finding his logo on Zero's buttocks and discovering the location of his spaceship's bridge.
He is also somewhat of a pervert as many of his inventions take the appearance of beautiful and often naked women, including his ship.
As for the character design of Dr. Clay, his hair and beard has eight long curls which give the shape of his head some resemblance to an octopus. Because of this Washu tends to call him an "octopus-head" as an insult.
Okuda's The All-New Tenchi Muyo! manga series
In this non-canon continuity, when being arrested by Mihoshi, Dr. Clay activates the "Dark Crystal" (which is the prototype for the ultimate defense system, with a self-evolving mechanism, created by Washu). The crystal evolves and takes the form of Washu, calling itself Dark Washu. Using this Dr. Clay attacks the Masaki residence in order to kill Washu, but later is defeated.
- Background information, along with information from the GXP novels, reveals Clay designed the drones that prevent cadets from leaving the dorms at the GXP Academy.
- Also, the 'horrific' mark that the GXP anime implies that the drones leave on a person, is revealed to be Clay's personal symbol.
- Dr. Clay's Octopus symbolism actually comes from an insult he suffered while he and Washu were students. Clay had arranged for him to become the guide for a pretty young student that he wanted to impress but when he opened his computer to show her his work, an extremely explicit pornographic video popped up. The girl ran out disgusted and he got a reputation as someone trying to get his 'hands' on girls (hence the 'octopus' comments, as-opposed to his beard). People thought it a funny prank but actually it was left there by Washu as "thanks", rather than as a prank; she had hacked his computer the night before and gotten very helpful information and left it there thinking a lonely guy like him would appreciate it.
- While on Racepshi, he has beautiful assistant from the ship named Lazanna. He chose her because she was calm and didn't push herself on him. His contract with the ship means he can ask anything of her and she will oblige but his complex about women means he is basically afraid of such a relationship.