Why Gundam Fans Should Vote For The VF-1 Variable Fighter in Sai Mecha (and Other Voting Truths in the Sai Mecha Quarterfinals)

macross dyrl vf-1s

I’LL BE THE FIRST TO ADMIT, Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn is an amazing show. I don’t just mean how it functions as a refrain for the entire mythology of Gundam. I actually mean how it’s superlative as a real robot show, by portraying mecha and their battles with superb quality: the best middle ground between the extremely plausible (by mecha anime standards, of course) such as FLAG, or even Patlabor, or Ghost in the Shell; to the ridiculous (by real robot standards) such as Mobile Suit Gundam SEED, or Code Geass.

This standard of quality allowed the OVA to showcase the Sinanju as the quickest, most agile mobile suit (outside of course, the super ridiculous prototypes in AU Gundam), and made Full Frontal look like one of the most skilled pilots in the Universal Century.

The Gundam franchise, as a rule sets suits of comparable power levels against each other, it is far more rarer an occurrence in Macross, which has historically pitted VFs against Regults which are pretty much space coffins not unlike the Balls in Gundam’s One Year War. Even so, Balls go against Zaku IIs who go against GMs, while the Gundam may rip more than a few Zaku IIs apart its real battle is with the Zeong… just as the Sinanju really had to face the Gundam Unicorn after having its way with Jegans and ReZels.

This is part of the myth-making that makes heroes and villains, that makes Gundam a cult of “ace pilots.” This however, where things begin to break down. Ace pilot status, for much of Gundam, seems to be bestowed by virtue of the prototype mecha that the pilot is allowed to use – often customized for the pilots’ genetic or engineered abilities, and not so much a status bestowed in acknowledgment of battlefield performance. The myth-building then becomes more about the prototype mecha facing each other, and less about the performance of the pilot over time.

In Macross, there are few pilots who’ve been bestowed “Ace” status, though many have demonstrable ability. What is remarkable though, that the most notable of these Aces achieved their status piloting mass-production units. This is more consistent to the real robot ideal that began with Mobile Suit Gundam in 1979. This is what I’m saying:

[ROC] Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn 02 [BD720,AC3].mkv_snapshot_30.29_[2010.11.02_06.58.54]

Macross, via the VF-1 achieved more with what Gundam as an ideal tried to do.

Mobile Suit Gundam, while in my mind remaining the apotheosis of real robot anime, was compromised in its attempt to depart from super hero type super robot shows by the necessity of featuring unique models (enemies) in what amounts to a monster of the week format. What the Zaku II innovated in, was taken back by having to produce a mobile suit for every significant opponent (“This is no Zaku Boy…”).

Char Aznable himself ended up piloting 4 different suits in the original TV series fighting Amuro’s Gundam. The Sinanju itself is a result of this “tradition” that now represents the actual failure of Gundam to depart from super robot trappings. There is no interest in breaking from this now, because this method sells toys, which results in more Gundam being made. I for one see no true tragedy in this, as I prefer to live in a world where the Sinanju exists (where the Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn show exists).

But in the ideal of Gundam and the departure into the real robot way, Macross kicked Gundam’s ass. Each new Gundam show is a catalog of new suits. The plot of the shows, are written around the highlight reels of these new toys. This is not to say Macross doesn’t have this behavior as well, but it is far less obvious. Also, the Macross mecha are all but for a few instances, mass production units just as the VF-1 is.

Thus, the Sinanju represents a non-tragic failure of Gundam to live up to its ideals. The VF-1 is the triumph of what Gundam tried to do.

Now, here’s something interesting. As far as I’m concerned, the best days of the Universal Century revolved around the Earth Federation vs. Zeon conflict, both in terms of narrative quality and in mecha design. The apex of this is in Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn (other shows may be done from existing material, but I’ll go with shows). Look at the following units, who must now represent the cutting edge of mass-production mobile suits:

D-50C Loto

gundam unicorn d-50c loto

RGZ-95 ReZEL

gundam unicorn rgz-95 rezel with jegan

MSN-001A1 Delta Plus

gundam unicorn msn-001a1 delta plus

These are, for all intents and purposes the definitive acknowledgment of the superiority of Variable Fighters as a mass-production fighting machine.

image

If it wasn’t already clear in how Mobile Suit Z Gundam introduced transforming mobile suits en masse, as if fighter craft “suddenly” became viable threats in the modern battlefield after being pretty much obsolete when Mobile Suits were introduced as the force that changed warfare in the first place, the reiteration in Mobile Suit ZZ Gundam, and now Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn makes it crystal clear how Macross transformed real robot anime.

After Macross, so many robot shows in the 1980s had to have something transform in some way or another. Gundam wasn’t about to be left behind.

Gundam was and is at its best and greatest when it shows the individual narratives as interesting sideshows in the great conflicts, that the obsession about silver bullets and super weapons never really decided the war. It just can’t help betraying what’s best about it, settling for only what is awesome.

It wanted us to believe that the soldiers do the fighting that wins wars, albeit victimized by the corruption of their leaders. But far too often, after the conclusion of the original series, it shows us how the elite few do all the fighting that matters… and now in Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn you have a single mobile suit that is the KEY to the whole history of the war, and the Sinanju is what stands in its way.

While never failing to acknowledge the merits of Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn and the Sinanju, if you’re a Gundam fan who wants Gundam to achieve what it set out to do – to put the war stories in the hands of the common soldier and their standard-issue mobile suits (and less in the hands of caricatures like Full Frontal, or teenagers like Banagher Links). If you want your standard issue Gundam mecha to be given the utmost creative powers that otherwise go into designing units like the Sinanju, then vote for the VF-1 in Sai Mecha.

Postscript

I suppose I have to vote for one of these, so I pick the Evangelion Test Type over the Tachikoma.

I vote for the Zaku II over the Escaflowne (for reasons consistent with what I wrote above; and because I am a Gundamfag)

I vote for the YF-19 over Gurren Lagann (because I am a Macrossfag).

About ghostlightning

I entered the anime blogging sphere as a lurker around Spring 2008. We Remember Love is my first anime blog. Click here if this is your first time to visit WRL.
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67 Responses to Why Gundam Fans Should Vote For The VF-1 Variable Fighter in Sai Mecha (and Other Voting Truths in the Sai Mecha Quarterfinals)

  1. Tronulax says:

    I’ve always had a soft spot for the VF-1. I still think gerwalk mode Valkyrie is one of the coolest looking things ever. Also, dat Itano circus.

  2. foshizzel says:

    Probably the best things about Gundam unicorn were the other suit designs! I liked all of the transforming suits even the tank one was great to see, I loved how each machine was different than the other as far as designs go anyway.

    Also gotta love the VF-1 ! It got my vote :D

  3. Reid says:

    It looks like you may have read my over-long rant over at the SaiMecha page. I looked over my post after I read this update and I have to say, I was way off base. I’m not even going to try to take credit for your brilliant insight. I wish I could have thought of this first. I definitely voted for the Zaku II for the reasons you stated in this post, but I must confess I, at some base level, voted for Sinanju because I just outright prefer Gundam to Macross. Thanks for indirectly calling me out on this one. I don’t know if anyone has yet admitted this to you, ghostlightning, but I do believe that you have actually made me regret my vote. You’ve won me over to your side. I wish I didn’t feel this way, that I had more conviction in my beliefs, but I don’t. If I had just said right from the start the reasons why I prefer Sinanju, there’d be no need for this…confession. Sorry. (overly dramatic, yeah yeah yeah)

    • BURN IN THE FIERY ARMPITS OF DOZLE ZABI YOU NEGLIGIBLE SQUIGGLE OF ZEON SCUM.

      ahem

      As a franchise, a narrative, and overall fucking thing, I think Gundam is the best. I just happen to love Macross more, my righteous truths here notwithstanding.

      • Reid says:

        You’re right. lol You’ve been at this mecha game longer than me, after all, so of course you’ll have better reasons for voting like you did.

        However…one tiny hole I see with your argument: doesn’t the VF-1S that gets piloted by squadron commanders/flight leads/element leads count as an “ace custom” of the VF-1? I mean, it does have increased thrust and a heavier weapons loadout, in addition to a swanky new head and avionics sweet. Correct me if I’m wrong here, but doesn’t Hikaru fly on of the S variants as his skill increases? Point is, even Char started off with a MS-06A before eventually getting his MS-06S, by which time it was clear that a standard-issue vehicle just wasn’t going to cut it if he was going to live up to his full potential.

        • The VF-1s:

          The final of the four minor VF-1 variants, the VF-1S carries the heaviest weapon load of the standard variable fighter. Manufactured only in limited numbers, Northrom also enlisted Kyuusei Industry to design a new head unit for their own variant. The VF-1S mounts four of the Mauler series RÖV-20 anti-aircraft laser cannons and enjoys several upgrades in addition to firepower. The engines are improved Shinnakasu Heavy Industry/P&W/Roice FF-2001D models resulting in measurably improved thrust and an enhanced avionics package is featured in each VF-1S. While usually reserved for CAGs (Commander of Air Group), the VF-1S also sometimes finds itself serving as the variable fighter for a squadron leader much like the VF-1J. Captain Roy Focker piloted a VF-1S during his command of the infamous Skull Squadron.

          The VF-1s “Strike”:

          The “Strike” Valkyrie is a minor variant to Shinnakasu Heavy Industry’s highly successful FAST Pack augmentative space weapon system. Foregoing the standard loadout of two HMMP-02 micro-missile launcher pods, the “Strike” system replaces one of the micro-missile pods (typically starboard) with a Mauler RO-X2A high-powered double-action beam cannon mounted on the NP-BP-01 pod. It is unknown whether the Strike configuration can substitute both HMMP-02 micro-missile launchers for a pair of Mauler RO-X2A cannons. While a pair of beam cannons may be theoretically possible, such a variant has not been seen in active deployment.

          Piloted by Roy Focker and Hikaru Ichijo, the “Strike” system was another highly successful variant, granting the VF-1 variable fighter more direct fire weaponry at the cost of a smaller missile payload. Though effective, the “Strike” Valkyrie was not as widely adopted by the U.N. Spacy as the more common “Super” Valkyrie system.

          Still mass production, non-custom units. NON-CUSTOM. It isn’t even a jump from a Zaku II to a Gelgoog as Char did. If you’re going to talk about a mid-season upgrade, the 1S was already showing in the first episode. Hikaru just inherited it, and did not get a fancy new machine hot off the production plant. This is not the GPO3/Neue Ziel INSTANT MOBILE ARMOR JUST ADD WATER kind of thing.

          • Reid says:

            Well, even in real life, air forces have different planes for different missions and some models will supercede others even during the lifetime of that plane, like when the F-86 Sabre replaced the P-80 Shooting Star after the USAF observed the obvious superiority of the MiG-15. I don’t think it’s too far out of the realm of believability that the Zeonic forces would come out with the MS-09 Dom and then the MS-14 Gelgoog while still keeping the Zaku II around. Char didn’t really ever get a MS that was “customized” until he picked up the Sazabi, since all his One Year War-era suits were pretty much the VF-1S of whatever family of MS he was using. Hyaku Shiki was a failed prototype and the Zeong wasn’t even finished yet, and wasn’t customized for his use (it didn’t even get the red paint treatment). Only the Sazabi was built from the ground up to be his mount. This is splitting hairs, but it’s soooo much fun.

          • Char = awesome.

            Other pilots, not quite. We need only visit the NT program with their tricked out suits and armors. They mostly die.

  4. Pingback: Your Completely Biased Sai Mecha Elite Eight Voting Guide and Image Dump

  5. WhatSht says:

    seriously, gundam just makes their main characters look good with superior technology
    , with superior technology, of course you win. i would vote for any VF because, like you, i’m a MacrossFag, and if gundam units got in, i would vote gundam units if the enemy wasn’t a VF. and also a reason to vote, the VF-1 once wore a zentradi uniform IN THE TOILET OF THE SHIP.

    • WhatSht says:

      and also, Gundam Units don’t get to wrestle/fight with space giants.

    • Of course superior tech makes a big difference. The miclones had far superior tech over the Zentraedi. The VFs were ways ahead of the Regults, Quaedlunns, Glaugs, etc. The Zentraedi just had a ridiculous beyond all dimensions of reason numerical advantage. There aren’t enough missiles in the SDF Macross fore every Zentraedi fighter craft. The Zentraedi were just hamstrung by the need to capture the Macross that they didn’t do what came naturally: Zergrush the fucker.

      Despite being an omnivorous robot fan, I’m more likely to vote Gundam in other matchups as well. But this is Macross we’re talking about, and the VF-1 is the best.

      • d3v says:

        Technically, the Quaedlunns were better in terms of outright performance to the Valks. The only things that held them back were the fact that a) they were already rare, couple the fact that only Laplamiz had them with the Adolcas fleet’s inability to do major repairs and b) they were fighting with the SDF-1 in the final battle with Bodolza.

        • The Queadlunn-Rau is indeed an impressive unit, to think that it fared extremely well into the 2040s — fighting against Macross 7-era VFs.

          This I think proves your point, though by the 2050s the VF-25 Messiah clearly outperforms the upgraded Queadlunn Rhea.

  6. megaroad1 says:

    The VF-1 is an absolute, unforgettable classic. The Sinanju has ways to go before achieving that status.

    Then again, maybe I’m not the most objective person on this issue.

    • As I said in the poll, the VF-1 initiates a tradition, the Sinanju is the latest representative of its own tradition. I don’t think it’s fair to compare the units that way, the equivalent of the Sinanju in Macross is the VF-27 Lucifer.

  7. Aorii says:

    Yes! I’ve been waiting for articles like this!
    The fact Gundam “Aces” always has to rely on experimental prototypes really detracts from the presentation of them as true aces, imo. Real aces, as WW2 history exemplified (especially with German tank/fighter aces), can fly a mass-production model off any base and proceed to dismantle opposing formations, not rely on overfinanced, overcustomized, and superspecs prototypes. The Zaku2 and VF aces *could* do this, and that, imo, is what made them the true ace pilots of the mecha genres.
    lol seeing as both the mechas I really respect are in this round, guess I’ll go drop a vote for once xD

    • tomphile says:

      Interesting that you bring WWII into this, and I totally agree with you. It’s the skill of the pilot and not the modifications to the mecha that determines how good you are, or if you’re an ace. But then again, it’s a given that the mecha has to be of a certain standard. I mean, even if it was mass-produced or something of the like, if the rust bucket couldn’t move, there’s no point, is there?
      Not meant to bash on your comment or anything, just my two cents.

      • Aorii says:

        No offense taken~
        Well yeah, you need at least a moderately performing machine. But then… some of those famed German tank aces began by driving crappy Panzer Is & IIs… now that calls for *respect*!

    • Thanks. I have to pick my spots. It’d be great if other fans put out essays like this as well — even as counterarguments.

      The interesting thing I see here as well, is that there is a stronger identification between the pilot and the mecha in Gundam, to the point that the robot is also an expression of the warrior spirit. It’d be like the design of the armor on the battlefield. Each Samurai would have his O-yoroi custom built (if he’s that kind of hero, and he can afford to do so). This brings us to another idea I’m partial to:

      Gundam (and other real robot shows) are deep inside wannabe super robot shows. The important characters get to be super heroes and villains on the battlefield. So it’s kind of like Dynasty Warriors/Sengoku Basara action games only with less combatants. I’m betting this wasn’t the ideal at all.

    • drmchsr0 says:

      Speaking of aces, what about aces like Ramba Ral, Johnny Ridden, Norris Packard and the 08th MS Team?

      Granted, the Goufs and the RX-78(G) were limited factory runs rather than prototypes… (The EZ-8 is, for the intent of this conversation, still an RX-78(G) Whether you like it or not.)

      Not to mention that Char originally got his “ace” by downing FIVE CAPITAL SHIPS IN NOTHING BUT A PAINTED ZAKU.

      • Reid says:

        Drmchsro is right. The whole reason Char got his S-model Zaku II was because he proved himself with a standard one…kinda like how Hikaru did before moving up to the VF-1S and inheriting command of the Skull Squadron.

        However, ghostlightning, aorii and tomphile are also right – Gundam does tend to make its protagonists into super-heroic figures via ultra-custom robots they get as a “mid-season upgrade” or right from the start. However, I think this was something that almost had to happen, considering the pressures placed on Tomino to change a lot of how the original Gundam was supposed to go in efforts to sell more toys and model kits. From there the theme just kind of caught on.

        Even shows (and books, manga, etc.) like “Area 88″, “Yukikaze” and “Dominion Tank Police” that don’t have a robot to their credit give the heroes customized or limited-run vehicles, though they are all based on mass-production vehicles. I think, as ghost said, Gundam does use the custom MS as an expression of the pilots’ warrior spirit, but this is, in general, something found in lots of anime, whether or not they use machinery a focal point. Just look at “Saint Seiya” or “Sailor Moon”. Maybe it would be more accurate to say that most anime hilights its heroes via newer, shinier, more exclusive hardware as the series goes on. Of course, the reason Gundam does this is because, and I agree with ghost once again, it DOES want to be a super robot show…which it also is not. This is all so very confusing.

        • It is at least true for the Zeong, if not for the Gelgoog, Z’Gokk, and Zaku II. It is true for the Sazabi, if not for the Hyaku Shiki (debatable).

          But we are talking about Char here, he is awesome.

          But how about the multitude of others:

          Paptimus Scirocco
          Haman Karn
          Yazan Gable
          Sarah Zabianov
          Four Murasame
          Rosamia Badam

          and motherfucking Jerid Mesa who got a fuckton of new suits all the fucking time?

          We were just talking about Z, there are many others in other Gundam shows. Char’s case for the Zaku II is an exception rather than the rule.

          • Reid says:

            Of course you’re right again. Why do I even try? (secrectly a glutton for punishment)

  8. Turambar says:

    You are a horrible person for voting Zaku-II over Escaflowne.

    I’m a slightly less horrible person for voting Gurren Lagann over YF-19.

    • Matt Wells says:

      This man/woman speaks the truth!

    • As much as I like Escaflowne the show, and the robot… I find it gimped in that it fought rather overpowered but ill-designed enemy mecha: stealth-mode caped Zeongs with tentacles.

      I actually prefer the Shezerade over the Escaflowne, so much sexier looking. Also the best fight was Escaflowne vs. Shezerade anyway. The lack of enemy mecha that were enjoyable for the dragon to fight took a lot away from the show for me… unlike Gundam where the most basic enemy mech, the Zaku II is badass looking and atmospherically terrifying despite its supposed generic mass production feel.

      The Zaku II was the first model kit us brothers ever got as kids… not even seen a single Gundam show (HGUC 0080 War in the Pocket 1/144). That’s how attractive the design is: it captured the imagination of 3 kids who didn’t even see a single pixel of Gundam anime.

      • Matt Wells says:

        The thing with Escaflowne is that the fantasy trappings by far take preccedent over the actual mecha, beautiful though they are, in an overdesigned sort of way. You could easily replace those fight scenes with Van and Alan taking on Zaibach soldiers on foot, wielding magical swords instead of Guymelefs, it wouldn’t be radically aletered in terms of structure.

        I’m still bitter over how the Scopedog and the Zaku didn’t battle each other out for the title of ultimate real robot. I voted for the VF-1 before reading your article, but your argument has swayed me to your point of view none-the-less. A real robot’s ability should be determined by the skill of the pilot, not the technological advantages it may have on the opposition.

        …And going completely off topic, can anyone else believe Yasuhiro Imagawa almost directed Escaflowne as a 52 episode action series? I would be intrigued to see that his version of the show.

        • Yes, you’re right about the Escaflowne… up to a point. Most of the mecha showcase involved dragon mode evading enemies. The flying scenes that captivate/inspire the likes of directors from Miyazaki to Kawamori take center stage in Escaflowne and they make sure the music makes all of it become this amazing experience.

          The terrible movie would’ve been an indication of a more action-oriented show. Still, Imagawa’s take would be interesting.

          Lastly, “ultimate” real robot or ultimate junkpile? The VFs are the ultimate real robots.

          • Matt Wells says:

            Alright, in your parlance, Valkyrie’s are the apothesis of the Real Robot, the most shining, glorious example. Zakus and Scopedogs exemplify the concept of a real robot as cannon fodder, hence the appeal for me seeing them fight. Shitty robot VS. Shittier Robot, but in a good way!

            Though even from a technical viewpoint, the Scopedogs are outmatched; paper thin armour and roller skates do little good against nuclear reactors and heat axes capable of cutting through battleships.

          • JoeQ says:

            Please, there never has been a true ultimate real robot show and you know it. Flag, Gasaraki, Macross, Votoms and Patlabor all get some parts right but fail at others.

            IMHO, Flag (and GitS, but that doesn’t count (unless you consider it to be the ultimate evolution of a real robot show, in the same way that Diebuster could be considered to be that for super robots)) comes closest, but while it’s gimmick and central focus are it’s triumphs, they are also it’s undoing as a mecha show. Still, I have faith that some day Takahashi will deliver.

          • Robots, not robot shows. Reading, it can be learned.

          • JoeQ says:

            Even so, HAVWC will be my champion. It (and it’s russian/chinese counterpart) is the closest we’ve come in anime so far, as long as you discount power armor, cyborgs and AI.

          • Reid says:

            The Gerwalk mode is the coolest thing ever, to me, a huge military aviation geek. We’ve already established many times over the “reason” why the humans “had” to make a 15-meter-tall humanoid mech to fight the Zentraedi, but if there was no need to grapple with giant aliens, the Gerwalk mode would outdoubtedly rank among the best bipedal robots. That said, because humans needed to “wrastle” with the Zentran infantry, does anyone have any idea why they should need a halfway between plane and humanoid? That alone has always mystified me…a variable fighter, to me, can’t be the “ultimate” real robot because of the three-mode transformation. It’s just too far-fetched for me.

          • Let’s set aside the reason for it being looking fuckmazing.

            The Gerwalk lets the mecha keep a “smaller” profile while retaining the hover ability of a Battloid, and part of the thrust of the Valkyrie.

            Your ultimate real robot just got ultimater.

          • Reid says:

            I totally agree…which is why if I had to build my “ideal” “real” “bipedal” mecha, I’d basically rip off the gerwalk mode minus the arms with hands. So pretty much I’d be looking at a battlemech that could also be an F-14/F-15 :)

          • Keep the hands, as you don’t have to always deploy them. In DYRL (see Gerwalk image in the post above) the hands are tucked in because the wings carry missiles/bombs. Once that payload is delivered, the Gerwalk serves more like a gunship, with forward facing small laser(s) and the main rifle (handheld for a wider firing arc).

      • d3v says:

        I voted for Esca simply because the show is Hory Froating Head-sama’s (aka Kawamori’s) concept of VFs in a fantasy setting taken all the way up to 11.

  9. I’ll be honest, I dislike both mecha. But sinanju, being a designers worst nightmare(not to mention those terrible sleeves) I’d have to go with the simple vf-1s….Because eva fags killed my VF-25!

    • The sleeves look great, the wings look great, so much to appreciate in the details. The VF-1 however, has a cleaner silhouette, clearer functional design (if however fantastic), and grounded on familiarity (the F-14 Navy fighter/bomber craft).

  10. Stormshrug says:

    You make some good points, but neglect one thing:

    In the end, no matter how “real” the tech is, all problems in the Macross universe are solved by singing.

    • This is so retarded.

      I responded to something like this some time ago:

      No you’re quite inaccurate about Macross.

      Prior to the Great Space War, music in the Mayan tradition where the Protoculture landed were songs of power — one of which was a song of destruction leading to actual physical attacks. At no point during this part of the history was music used as a political or social agent.

      In the Great Space War, Minmay’s music was a catalyst for the Zentraedi to awaken their interest in culture. Not all of them shared this interest, which resulted in Bodolle Zer attempting to destroy not only the source of the contamination, but all Zentraedi exposed to the Miclone culture.

      Minmay’s concert during the last stand against the Bodolle Zer fleet served as an audiovisual shock agent, rendering previously unexposed Zentraedi less capable in combat and were killed accordingly. Bodolle Zer himself was killed in the final push.

      Leading up to 2012, not all Zentraedi were positively affected by Minmay’s singing, which in part led to Minmay’s career hiatus and attempted retirement. Kamjin led his faction of belligerents on a last attack on Macross City, resulting in their deaths.

      In Macross Plus the virtual idol Sharon Apple used music as a control agent while it acted out it’s personality donor’s love issues. Again, music is not used as a social agent.

      In Macross 7, it can be argued that Basara managed to turn some of the Protodevlin to peace, but for the most part the crucial epiphany (Gepelnitch) had to do with discovering an alternative power source as opposed to enslaving humans. Music was never really powerful there as a social agent, but rather it became powerful as an energy weapon (oh fucking yes) against the Protodevlin.

      Basara is mostly oblivious to all this. All he cared about was making others LISTEN TO HIS SONG. In Macross Dynamite 7 he made sweet music to space whales given the show is some form of galactic Moby Dick.

      In Macross Frontier it is arguable that the Zentraedi uprising in Gallia IV was quelled when Ranka performed. Otherwise, music was more of a communication system with the Vajra. Aimo is a mating song, and for a time appropriated as a war agent against the Vajra resulting in temporary shock upon exposure. Otherwise it is more like a language rather than a specific tool/agent within a language.

      So, there are only a few cases wherein social disputes were solved with the assistance of music. In SDFM post Space War Minmay performed to calm down some belligerent Zentraedi (who weren’t turned by Kamjin yet), and in Frontier wherein Ranka quelled a mutiny. One can argue that Basara effectively ended the battle against the Chlore Fleet of the Zentraedi once he managed to make them LISTEN TO HIS SONG, but that only makes three cases — hardly worth the reputation the franchise has.

      If you’re looking for music as propaganda to solve social disputes (or exert social control), look into Mobile Suit Gundam Seed Destiny and Durandal’s use of Meer Campbell (as Lacus Clyne), or perhaps Marina Ismail’s efforts in Mobile Suit Gundam 00, though that’s really pushing it.

      • Stormshrug says:

        This is a huge, fan-wanky pile of excuses and justifications that don’t change any of the pertinent facts.

        Nothing that you cited changes the underlying nature of the situation: music is *magic* in the Macross universe. Music GETS SHIT DONE. Music makes the majority of a race of genetically-programmed warriors decide that it doesn’t just want to fight any more. Music makes space-vampires get in touch with their humanity. Music lets us talk to space-bugs and stop them from eating our delicious, delicious civilians. Just because the stories offer supposed reasons that music works in this (very different from real life) way does not make it any less magical.

        Sometimes, robot fighter planes get to help.

        • In the end, no matter how “real” the tech is, all problems in the Macross universe are solved by singing.

          This is your original statement. It only takes one example to prove how wrong it is. SDF Macross’s finale is utterly devoid of singing. The SDF-1 is destroyed, Minmay is vanquished by Misa, Kamujin and Laplamiz died. It was a battle. There was no singing whatsoever.

          Your statement was wrong from the very first show. There it is. You fail.

          Evidence is rock solid. Calling it fanwanky while being a buttweasel and pretending I can’t read or remember what you wrote is beyond retarded.

          Nothing I said claims that music isn’t important or relevant or powerless. It is important, powerful, amazing, and brilliant. It what makes Macross awesome, and is something that Gundam tries to copy every now and then (V Gundam, GSD, 00) with results that aren’t awesome (or are the opposite of awesome). Thanks for playing.

          • WhatSht says:

            The SDF-1 wasn’t destroyed, only sustained heavy damage.
            there was no singing because it was wayyyy too intense for you to even put a Lyn Minmay song in(when the Macross lifted off, the opening song playing made it quite epic)

          • Yes, it wasn’t totally destroyed — it showed up in Macross Plus after all!

            Yes, the more traditional method of playing the OP during a key moment in the finale was employed for great effect. That said, there was no opening, no justification, no intention of making an idol song-driven resolution for SDF-Macross. It is a love story set against the backdrop of great battles, not an idol concert set against the backdrop of great battles.

          • Stormshrug says:

            Oh, I did get it. Sorry *I* didn’t make that clearer.

            I wouldn’t have been such a troll outside of a SaiMecha post.

            Anyway, I love your insults. They are great lulz.

          • Dangit, and I was itching to pull this one out of the arse(nal):

            “Very revealing indeed. It finally revealed my righteous vengeance against the scourge of retardation that verily is the cancer that is killing Sai Mecha. I congratulate you for learning at least this much.”

        • Stormshrug says:

          The depth of your rage about this matter is very revealing. If there wasn’t a grain of truth to what I said, it wouldn’t have struck a nerve.

          • This is a Sai Mecha post, where I write arrogant self-aggrandizing posts and flame commenters.

            If we had this “discussion” in WRL’s regular Macross posts you’d never find me calling anyone names.

            This entire post is propaganda. I can make a scathing counterargument against it. (You can see my 180 re Giant Robo from round 1 to round 2).

            Thus, kindly accept my poor apologies for my behavior and assumptions that you’d “get” what I’m playing at. I am correct in disagreeing with you but I redact all the “retarded and beyond retarded” nonsense in it. Sorry.

          • Stormshrug says:

            “Oh, I did get it. Sorry *I* didn’t make that clearer.

            I wouldn’t have been such a troll outside of a SaiMecha post.

            Anyway, I love your insults. They are great lulz.”

            Whoops, that was supposed to end up on this chain, not the other one. Man, I’m really not good at navigating those things.

  11. I’m fairly certain that Gundam set out to generate profit. And a fan who wants to help it along need only buy models (of, for example, the Sinanju).

    • As do most animated ventures, to the point that it’s less relevant to point out. This is no tragedy, as I’ve mentioned in the post. It just got more in the way of other, “more noble” intentions.

  12. Vendredi says:

    Special prototypes have indeed become a Gundam staple, but I think for the most part it is a little hasty to assume that ace pilots automatically start with prototypes; quite a few series prefer to roll in the prototypes as part of an upgrade for an already established ace – especially in the case of rival pilots.
    Consider Zechs Merquise and Lucrezia Noin of Gundam Wing, or Smirnoff and Graham Aker in 00. Even in the original MSG, Char never received prototypes, per se – commander models, definitely, but it may be a stretch to suggest these are prototype configurations.

    • Nah I don’t assume that they start with prototypes, but only there are many cases where they aren’t. For every Smirnoff we have a Pieres… who destroyed 0 Gundams before getting her pink custom. Also, 00 went out of its way to have the pre-federation Earth guys to have inferior tech to Celestial being. When the rival Innovators came… the “earned ace status” thing falls apart, but not before the Thrones did it in first.

      This isn’t to deny the Zechs and Ali Al-Saachezes in Gundam, but they are matched or outnumberred by the Ray Za Burrels, Paptimus Sciroccos, Nena Trinitys that spend just as much time “rivaling” the Gundam leads as well.

  13. Pingback: SaiMecha: Making A Case For Sinanju | Continuing World

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  15. soulassassin says:

    I share my opinion: since Macross came first in my life than Gundam, my vote is for the VF-1, bar none.

    OBTW, I’m getting Frontier and actually watching it. Love the ride. So damn powerful. :)

  16. Pingback: Macross Frontier as Mecha Anime—The 7th of 6 Posts on The Wings of Farewell | We Remember Love

  17. Maximillion Jenius says:

    Well Gundam 00 multiplied the ridiculous levels of seed a million times. Nice post, I always held Battletoids on a higher regards compared to mobile suits. Though valkyrie and skull squardon will always be my favorite. As long as Rick Hunter and Max will be the pilot.

  18. Pingback: We Remember Love Says Goodbye, and Thank You For All The Memories | We Remember Love

  19. Pingback: We Remember Love Says Goodbye, and Thank You For All The Memories | Xcuz Me

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