Macross Frontier: “That’s not a Macross. THIS is a Macross.”

I have to sing the original theme song now. Or, well, listen to the Fujiwara Makoto original, followed by the Animetal version. I don’t really know if this is the actual, original Super Dimensional Fortress Macross (last I checked it was sitting on Earth, chillin’ out and trying to mack on the Space Battleship Yamato, who always rebuffs Macross’s advances, considering itself far above such a relationship); the only way to tell is if Alto and Ranka enter it and find U.N. Spacy mugs. The next episode title, however, speaks of Global, who I can only assume is Captain Global, who is manly and awesome and also can never enter the bridge without banging his head on the top of the door. He is probably dead by now, if he didn’t already die in SDF itself (I can’t remember), but, still, the memory lives on.

Of cousre, that’s not the only reason I titled this post the way I did. Macross Frontier has always been pretty Macross from the get-go, insomuch as it is possible for something to be described as “pretty Macross” because the only thing any two Macross series have in common is the name “Macross.” But, for some reason, whether it was just the fact that it’s been a couple weeks since I last saw an episode of Frontier, 11 and especially 12 felt extremely Macross. And, no, silly, it wasn’t because there were dogfights. They helped, but that isn’t all.

I’m guessing part of the reason I feel this way is simply what actually happened–Ranka (who I am pulling for) has spent the past several episodes being completely unable to talk to Alto in any significant manner whatsoever–whether it be because she’s oh so very nervous to talk to him who she adores, or simply because she’s extremely busy with the hectic life of being a newly-discovered idol talent (including taking gravure photos–artbook please?). It’s also quite funny/ironic, that when she should be at her happiest (having had her big break) she doesn’t seem to really be all that happy, despite what the gravure pictures tell you. I half-expected her to crush her Valkyrie cookies, but what actually happened was far more devestating than that.

At any rate, she’s been unable to talk to him, which, of course, has given Sheryl the edge over her in the unconscious “contest” between the two of them (if either of them are even aware that it is a “contest”)–but, of course, in episode 12, Ranka takes the lead back again in style; Minmei, to be precise. She shows up, and totally stops a rampaging army of cultureless Zentradi by singing at them. I, of course, was having Macross 7 flashbacks, and kept expecting to see a Song Booster or someone shouting about Chiba Song Units, or for Ranka to start glowing with an ethereal fire, because that’s how awesome her song is. Heck, the ending theme was Ranka singing Ai, Oboeteimasu ka? If that’s not Macross, I don’t know what is.

Remember the previous post where it’s like “What is going on in Sheryl’s mind?” Now there’s further confusion. Is she aware of Ranka’s affection and crush on Alto, and is deliberately ignoring it so she can sate her own desires, or is she blind to Ranka’s feelings and merely inadvertently acting contrary to Ranka’s own feelings? As revealed in the comments, we don’t know because we haven’t actually gotten a glimpse into her mind, and can only judge her by her actions. Across these two episodes, we have seen Sheryl insist on traveling a long distance despite being obviously very sick, we have seen Sheryl collapse after said long distance due to being very sick, and Sheryl lounging around in her underclothing, which is probably why she’s very sick in the first place.

The only hint we are given as to her own, true feelings, is a fleeting glimpse of her, while bedridden, during Ranka’s triumphant concert (whcih might as well be her “first live”, because, well, she’s not going to actually have her actual “first live” because she’s stuck in the middle of nowhere with only Alto and a rusty Macross to keep her company), looking very upset indeed, to the point of gripping the sheets with what seems to be rage. This would imply (to me) that she feels that she has lost to Ranka somehow, whether it simply being that she showed up out of nowhere and completed the task that she couldn’t fill, due to being very ill, or whether it was because of the deeper thing of getting shown up by Ranka in front of Alto, when she was the one who drug Alto out there in the first place. Is it possible to tell? Will we ever actually know sometime before episode 25? Who knows. I may mock-hate Sheryl elsewhere (although I don’t really recall any instances of this, but I never do), but she is both a) hot and b) an intriguing character to try and figure out. I will leave it up to you to determine which of those two I value more, because hell if I know.


I just want to point out that dangling from the shower stall because you’re too short to see the person in the stall next to you while you’re convinently dumping important exposition on her, the surrogate for the viewer, is the cutest thing ever, made extra-cute by the fact that it’s KLAN KLAN dumping the exposition. I think I will have to make every instance of KLAN KLAN bold and all caps from now on, because she deserves it. Possibly blue, but that’s probably too much effort.

8 Responses to “Macross Frontier: “That’s not a Macross. THIS is a Macross.””

  1. 1 jacobian 30 June 2008 at 1:20 am

    I think Sheryl’s illness may be a bit more serious than that, given the news bulletin that we saw at the start of 11.

    I also suspect that the reason that she travelled all the way in spite of her sickness were a combination of her desire to support the survivors of Galaxy (as mentioned in 11) and her desire to fulfill Alto’s dream (seeing as she tried to push herself at the expense of her own health to do so in this episode).

    I really don’t think that Ranka has anything to do with it. It’s just happens to be the first time that she’s been unable to pull through on her own willpower, and she probably doesn’t like the feeling of being helpless.

  2. 2 rroknedaj 30 June 2008 at 7:41 am

    I agree with Jacobian on the matter. She’s probably cursing her helplessness or something, seeing that she isn’t usually doesn’t let herself down too often.

  3. 3 cuchlann 30 June 2008 at 5:17 pm

    jacobian makes a lot of sense. I think we also see through the chinks in her armor when she tells Alto she’s sorry he can’t fly — which, remember, was a much better present for Alto than cookies, in that it has to do with what he really, desperately wants out of life. Now, they were enormously cute Valkyrie cookies, so they get a few extra win points, but still.

    I’ve been a little irritated with Ranka over the past few episodes — she’s been a little too much of a wilting flower. But episode twelve puts her back into awesome territory. And provides some songs that are entertaining to listen to when I’m not into the melancholy — so you can be assured that ninjin-sama won’t be upset with me any longer. ; )

  4. 4 otou-san 30 June 2008 at 7:20 pm

    I think Macross F has been the “most Macross” of any series, ever. It’s referenced everything but Plus now, if you count the very Macross-7-esque Minmay Defense that Ranka and Michel put up this week.

    I do, however, think it’s becoming more clear that Grace is working with Leon and is scheming something but who knows what. Possibly they know Ranka is Vajra-bait and for some weird reason want a Vajra takeover. Thus weakening Sheryl, Chiko-style, and conspiring with the 33rd to ambush the concert entourage. Of course, I’ve been wrong before.

  5. 5 OGT 30 June 2008 at 7:39 pm

    @Jacobian: Ranka acts as a kind of symbol of Sheryl’s weakness at this point; Sheryl came to sing at the Zentradi and make them feel better, but couldn’t because she was sick and inadvertently started the rebellion. Then Ranka comes along and sings at them and they stop fighting. So, Ranka has everything to do with it, simply by being a physical reminder of her failure. Also something about the aged idol being replaced with a fresh young face etc. etc.

    @cuchlann: Yes, flying in an actual sky was what Alto really wanted–but, God damn it, Ranka baked those Valkyrie cookies for him. She put her heart and soul into those Valkyrie cookies. If Alto were to eat one of those Valkyrie cookies, it would be as if the two had become one.

    And Sheryl may have brought him to whatever-it-was IV to fly in the sky, but who rode with him? Ranka. RANKA. I rest my case, you filthy Sheryl fan. SIEG RANKA.

    @otou-san: There is a conspiracy, but who knows what and with whom it is, and for what end. I don’t like Grace one bit, though.

  6. 6 Jobrill 1 July 2008 at 6:43 am

    I approve of the Klan Klan watch. I’m really hoping for a Klan and Mikhael episode before the series ends.

  7. 7 jacobian 1 July 2008 at 7:27 pm

    Well, that’s the way that she “ought” to react, but it isn’t necessarily the way that she did react.

    Ranka’s a bit more than a year younger than Sheryl. Do you mean that Ranka will become an “aged idol” in the span of a year?

  8. 8 OGT 1 July 2008 at 10:10 pm

    Sheryl is a huge mystery, and I don’t really consider anything I (or anyone else) says on the matter as anything other than complete speculation and analysis.

    The “aged idol” thing was less a reference to her physical age, and more that Sheryl has been an idol for [indeterminate period of time] and that, with the rise of Ranka as an idol, it’s possible that she’s being eclipsed by the “young” new idol, however temporarily, and in spite of the fact that Sheryl played a major (both witting and unwitting) role in getting Ranka to stardom.

    Or something. :|

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June 2008

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