Cool, ain't they? And you wonder why I want them...

These pics take a bit to load, but well worth it...

Here's some pics of other Valks that might be nice...

Valks, too | Valks, three!

Date: Thu, 13 Dec 2001 02:03:10 -0800
From: Ginrai
Subject: Macross/MOSPEADA History Lesson!

At 01:26 AM 12/13/01 +0000, you wrote:
> How is the Legioss we have over here neutered?

Can't fire, just like how Jetfire was neutered...

> Those alpha's seem fine to me.

They're not. :)

> And this is a bit off topic, but I am thoroughly confused
> w/ all these names (since i been looking into em lately).. care to
> explain for me ginrai?
> Legioss
> Macross (well i know what that is..)
> Gakken
> Mospeada
> So confused.. whats the connection between all these, toy wise and storyline wise?

Ooo, tall order. Okay... here we go.

In Japan, once upon a time, there was a student who worked part time for Studio Nue, an animation design studio. He did a little work on shit like Space Battleship Yamato (Star Blazers in the US), but since he wasn't a legal adult yet, his name didn't hit the credits. He left school (dunno if he graduated or what) and immediately became full-time at Nue and started kicking MAJOR ass. His brainchild: Choujikuu Yosai Makurosu. The Super Dimension Fortress Macross. This man's name: Shouji Kawamori. This show began life as a parody of Gundam, but soon developed into something much, much more. Space Mega City Megaroad 1 became the Super Dimension Fortress 1 Macross and the bizarre Breast Fighter became the Valkyrie Fighter, which was refined to the Variable Fighter 1 Valkyrie. The show was a big kick in the ass for a lot of reasons. In a mechanical sense, it was a huge leap forward in that it was the first (as far as I or anyone I've talked to knows) realistic vehicle to robot transformation (which it's widely believed inspired Takara to drastically revamp the Diaclone line), the first GERWALK (Ground Effective Reinforcement of Winged Armament with Locomotive Knee-joint), i.e., jet with legs, and brought a new level of maturity to robot animation with its complex characters, difficult issues (like, the Zentradi soldiers just wanna come have a good time in Macross City, but their leaders want to kill us... do we accept the defectors?), complex love triangles (almost getting into soap opera realms!), and intense mecha designs. All of this was coupled with wonderful design all around (the mecha, ships, and characters are all masterfully done) and great music. Unfortunately, Robotech ruined that music. More on Robotech in a second.

Macross was successful, and warranted a follow-up. Super Dimension Cavalry Southern Cross and Super Dimension Century Orguss, while both good shows in their own right, didn't have much to do with Macross. Some of the Macross staff worked on them, there were Macross in-jokes (one of the old girlfriend's Kei in Orguss remembers is actually Minmei, and one of the monitor's in a GERWALK in Orguss shows a picture of Misa from Macross naked for an insant as it starts up), and some Macross ideas were borrowed (like the GERWALK), but the fantastic (in the sense of... fantasy) and somewhat lighthearted Orguss was only moderately popular, and Southern Cross (an attempt to focus HEAVILY on the soap opera aspects) just plain tanked.

Not too long after Macross, another show came out from another studio (ARTMIC! who rock), which was, shall we say, Macross-influenced. It sort of crossed Macross with Mad Max and genetic engineering and was called Genesis Climber MOSPEADA. It featuring realstic fighters that transformed from jet to GERWALK to robot... just like Macross. It had soap operatic love triangles... just like Macross. It had a post-apocalyptic future... just like ... well, the later part of Macross. It had a small group of people with a handful of vehicles trying to defeat a dominating force of overwhelming odds (just like macross, except they had more mecha and a spaceship) and featured nomadic gangs and people salvaging every scrap of technology they could because all the factories were gone and the corperations gone and things were close to fuedal (just like Mad Max!)... and stuff. Good show, not as good as Macross, in my opinion, but still very good. The Genesis Climber bit, BTW, has to do with the leader of the alien forces who have conquered earth screwing with genetic engineering to try to turn her race into the form most suited to life on earth. The MOSPEADA has to do with the name of the transforming motorcycle thing that lots of people had. That was the NAME of one variety of the motorcycle, in fact. It's an acronym. Mobile Operation Soldier Protection Emergency Aviation Dive Armor. Yeah. Try to say that in one breath. I dare you. The three mode variable jet? The Legios(s), which can also dock with the TREAD, a big bulky bomber built on the same principles of being a realstic jet thing that transforms into a robot... some Dorvack design sense in that puppy, too, I might add.

Gakken was just the company that put out the MOSPEADA toys, as Takatoku and its dimestore partner Mark, and later Matsushiro and Bandai did for Macross. Note that Gakken was banking on MOSPEADA being a huge hit so invested a TON of money into MOSPEADA toys. Unfortunately for them, MOSPEADA wasn't the runaway hit they were expecting. The debacle eventually drained them dry and killed them off.

Robotech? What's that? Long story short: An American company got the rights to Macross, started making it direct to video dubbed to English, released a few volumes at the same time as they got the first volume of an English comic adapting the animation. After issue one of the Super Dimension Fortress Macross comic hit the stands (with the original Japanese title in kanji and katakana intact), the company behind this effort hastily rethought it, teamed with model company Revell (who had imported a number of mecha models including those from shows such as Macross, Orguss, Crusher Joe, Dougram, etc under the name Robotech). The model line could really use a TV show to sell it... Harmony Gold gave the crew six months to make Macross and two other shows work as a single program so they could have enough episodes for syndication. Those two other shows? Southern Cross and MOSPEADA. Originally the plan was to make it a Sci-Fi Theatre type of deal. Show all the eps of Macross, move on to the next show. In practice, however, the company decided it wasn't feasible and instead mangled it into one big show. To make the shows uniform they hacked out the music to all three shows and replaced it with trash. Oh yeah, and cut out all the nudity and some of the more bloody scenes. And dubbed it. Really, really hastily.

P.S. Jetfire came out before Robotech did.

And how does this all relate to GoBots, you're just dying to know? One of the MOSPEADA transformable model kits of a Legios(s) wound up in the GoBots line of models, as did a MOSPEADA. Nifty, huh? I dig how Bandai manages to wrap its tentacles around most of the coolest things out of Japan. :)
The moral of the story: SHOUJI KAWAMORI IS GOD MADE FLESH.

So now you know, and knowing is half the battle! (Unless you're dead.)

--== Ginrai =============--
- Robots, B-Movies, Anime, Toys-
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