ICONIC SCENE: Atmospheric reentry.

STORY DATE: November 2009


BROADCAST DATE: January 9, 1983

1. The Pin-Point Barrier Girls are with Claudia on the bridge… that’s new. Also, just curious here… from the outside, the Macross’s front window is massive, so why is the bridge itself so tiny?

2. Let’s face it: the story of the outsider coming in and trying to make sense of things that we take for granted is always a great comedy generator. And so it is with the three spies (who are generally called the “Lolicon 3” in official materials, but I won’t be calling them that here), and they find themselves baffled, horrified, and fascinated by life aboard the Macross (I note that if the city hadn’t been there, and it had only crewmembers aboard, it would be much more familiar and much less interesting to them. Having those civilian refugees aboard really saves everyone).

One thing I like is that although they become comic relief, they don’t turn into buffoons. They are still completely intent on doing their research mission to the best of their ability. Indeed, if they were less serious about their mission, they’d be much less funny; their serious demeanor and focus on their mission just adds to the comedy. And it’s worth noting that even when they get played for laughs, they remain pivotal characters. Their reports when they return to their ship are what end up turning a lot of the Zentradi to the human side.

3. We get a little clue of how things are going to go over with the Earth Government when even the brass aboard the Macross don’t quite believe Misa about the size, strength, and possible weaknesses of the Zentradi. It’s only gonna get worse, old lady…

4. Again, I think sometimes the staff forgets that the city aboard the Macross isn’t Tokyo. When the three spies step out of the elevator and see it, it sure looks like it is.

5. Dammit, Star Pro… when Minmay is giving rewards to Misa et al, you look like Quaqmire, and everyone else just looks dumb. And Misa looks like an idiot when she goes back to her seat on the (tiny) bridge!  C’mon, show some competency!

Generally, the Star Pro stuff in the episode (surprisingly) works when it comes to the three spies, since they’re meant to be comic, and Star Pro’s artwork is nothing if not laughable. On the other hand, for the more serious scenes, it’s deadly. Luckily, there IS some good artwork here, but it’s all reused from previous episodes (and there’s a rather shocking amount of it, too).

6. If not for the awful art, the scene where MIsa returns to her post and Focker gets angry at Hikaru for reporting for duty would be really funny and touching. Thankfully, the voice actors can still sell the scenes, but the visuals aren’t doing them any favors.

7. And Lap’Lamiz begins the first of many ineffectual moments, as Kamujin tries to destroy the Macross, and she stops him. Seriously, gal, he’s probably got the right of it…

8. Oh, and it’s clear by these point that the Macross has the transformation all figured out, with minimal damage to the city. I wonder when that happened?

9. When the Macross finally splashes down on earth, the music is the (again, maddeningly unavailable) instrumental version of “Love Drifts Away.”


10. Again, watching this show for the first time, I was surprised that they made it back to earth so soon, figuring that that would’ve been the entire point of the show.

It’s not, of course.

I tend to view Macross as a trilogy, and this marks the end of part one. Things will just get harder from here on out.


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