MACROSS FASTEST LIFTOFF
BROADCAST DATE: October 2, 1994
This is an odd little teaser for Macross Seven that aired two weeks before the series started (and almost exactly twelve years after the debut of the original SDF Macross series). Our hosts on this odyssey of fantasy and wonder are LaSalle Ishii, a popular TV variety host, and Nana Horie, an actress. It’s an unusual choice, for sure. Ishii, at that point, was approaching forty, Horie was sixteen, and neither of them know anything about Macross. There doesn’t seem to be any script; it looks like they were given topics and info and just told to discuss it, which leads to a number of embarrassing and/or hilarious moments (my favorite is when Ishii is handed a Bandai Valkyrie and tries to transform it, even though he has no idea how to do so). Ishii is still around, although he tends to do TV dramas rather than variety shows these days, but Horie seems to have had a very brief career and has vanished from show business. She doesn’t even have a Wikipedia page. The show is narrated by Kenji Utsumi, who played MIllard in Macross Plus, but is probably better known as Raoh in Fist of the North Star. He passed away in 2013.
Anyway, they’re in some kind of Egyptian-themed (???) set, with Macross merchandise placed all around them, talking about the history of Macross (“I can’t believe it’s been twelve years already!” Ishii says at the beginning, mock-sobbing as Horie comforts him, before she points out that she doesn’t know anything about Macross because she was only four years old when it debuted… Only twelve years…? Horie was four…? Man, I feel old…). But mostly, it’s hype for Macross Seven.
Again, it’s pretty weird, but kind of interesting. Early on, Ishii likens Macross to a “trendy drama,” the nickname for TV serials that appealed to young working women, and he stresses the “human interest” of the series. At the time of this writing, a bunch of dudes are still miffed that Delta is aimed primarily at young women rather than men in their forties, but clearly that trend goes back a lot further than they thought.
When they get to the mecha, you can tell this was made before the second episode of Plus came out, because they show the VF-1 and the YF-21, and then skip to Basara’s VF-19. The YF-19 is nowhere to be seen.
There’s an interview with Kawamori, as well (where he’s given the vague credit “Original Creator/Supervisor” of Macross Seven… more about that next time) and he shows off his model of of the VF-17 (not made out of Legos, although there’s a Lego VF (is it a 19…?) behind him).
There are also a lot of clips from the original series, but oddly, they seem to mostly use the awful Star Pro scenes… were they trying to make Seven’s animation look good by comparison? I have no idea…
The “Making of Macross 7” is kind of cool, showing the animation and voice recording studios, but yeah… other than that, its primary value is for comedy in how amateurish the whole thing is. I’m not sure how fired up for Macross Seven I’d be if I’d seen this first…