Amending a review for a show you originally thought was a mediocre mess only to be surprised by a solid second act, is very rare. In fact, I am not sure it has happened to me yet.
Ah Macross... You big beautiful mix of warfare and dancy pop numbers. Shredded mecha roar by with explosions everywhere all the while a songstress (or plural) belt out love ballads. meanwhile a love triangle (mostly 2 girls and 1 guy, with a couple exceptions) forms and causes for great soapy drama.
Originally I noted the fact that in the first 10-12 episodes it felt like the creators threw in everything but the kitchen sink. They Jam it with not only 1 or 2 pop stars, they up the ante and give us a whole pop group, while even the opposing antagonists have their own boy singer! Protoculture talk gets more screen time, we add in a virus, and some more political intrigue.
I felt like the title did not know where to stop with the layers. And there was the ultimate issue. It never seemed to have the time in 26 episodes to fully fill out any one aspect of the show. Build up of the love triangle falls apart, and so does any possibility of a true goal.
Example right from the begining: (Slightly spoilerish for only episode 1-2)
Apparently, a pop group called Walkure can defeat this infection/syndrome with trans-dimensional music and have a mecha wing called Delta to help combat shit. Meanwhile a capable forklift-mecha driving boy (who knows how to keep a beat) helps out a stowaway named Freyja who hopped an apple container heading to where Walkure are based out of, to become one of the group.
Bad guys show up in the way of a massive infestation in the brains of some old-school Zentradi/Meltrandi as they decide to go ballistic in some Regult Pods. Magical girl pop band are sent in to save the day. (the magic is more technology, as their outfits sparkle and shimmer into pop-idol sherbet outfits.)
Now, in the course of Episode 0-1 to 2 there is so much coming at you, it is hard to take it all in. The direction seems to not know how to slowly build a moment what-so-ever and just toss you into a lake of story and hope you can swim.
I know it is because I am a cranky old cuss, but it does not “feel” Macross-y. In fact it feels like Shoji Kawamori, Macross creator, wanted to get as much in during the first episodes as possible.
Sure it is cheesy as hell, having all this glorious singing while the Walkre change outfits and glam out during combat. The reasoning takes a bit of just going with it, type of mentality. But here is where the title rights the ship a bit. About episode 10 I found myself starting to like the cast and the show started to gain traction. By episode 12/13 it hits the end of what could be a great half point The buildup of the Windermerians back story adds weight to their plight. Also, the overall threat builds to a more believable level. But when you get to the end of episode 26, so much shit is coming at you, and everysong is belted out, that by the end you are left not really caring what happens. it was either too many things happening, or everything was happening too quickly.
Now all that said, the action is fast and furious. Maybe too fast and furious, for the only battle you will end up caring about is the occasional fight between the White Knight and Hayete. The pop-songs are fun, and could make for a heck of a soundtrack. But god, the cheese is even worse than Macross 7 with the Sound force.
The Animation for the most part was solid and sharp. But it does not feel special. In fact it feels like the progress since Macross Frontier was non-existant, and not that impressive. The only “better” part would be the CG rendered Mecha. Let’s face it, Kawamori, knows how to design mecha. The character designs are super glossy and not very original in my book.
Now , it might be good to have some familiarity with the franchise before jumping in. You will not understand the giant Zentradi much, or the fact that “culture” has a lot to do with the title.
I might put up a watching order of shows someday, but you will probably want to see the original macross, Macross Love Do You Remember, Macross 7 and Macross Frontier and it's two movies to get the full effect of the title.
I've watched the whole Frontier and gave a good review. But I dropped this at episode 1. It's an Idol parade killing every other aspect of this Anime with low budget alike songs.
TL;DR Don't watch this if you have something better to do. Make sure you watch SDF Macross, Macross 7, and Macross Frontier before watching this to avoid suffocation.
As a giant macross fan (6'3''), this one was almost as disappointing as macross 7. It feels more like a mahou shoujo for the first 6 or so episodes, reaches a macross level peak in perfomance at 12/13. And then has a truly dull ending. I felt a slight rush of emotion right at the very beginning of 26, but then it quickly died out, and i just sort of sat there waiting for it to end.
This show doesn't seem to know what it is. There is an idea for a story, but they also feel like they have to reference every other macross ever, which was... not necessary. It really bogs things down with useless clips, and then, because they do that so much around 17, they have an episode with an exposition dump. Which in film is just TERRRRRIIIIIIBBBBLLLLLLLEEEEEEEE. I wanted to skip that episode, but the information seemed important. Maybe they should have just shown us that info and let us infer it instead of telling us about past singers.
The sonds are... sometimes exciting, and adhere to the strong macross tradition of naming the songs stupid stuff like "Love's Halation the War." Wtf does that even mean? Then they also have songs that very cleverly have lyrics that match exactly what is happening on the screeen. yessssssss. Was good. HOWEVER, a big part of macross is the masterpiece of the background music being solid enough to just play by itself and be an enjoyable experience. Every other macross has done this, with Yoko Kano's work in frontier being the best, but this one just doesn't. It has sounds from older series woven in, but it is just mood music. Nothing to captivate. Oh, and the climax song isn't energetic. I mean.... no, the big battle song always sends chills down the spine. Overall, I'll be buying the soundtrack, and skipping 3/4 of it.
Animation tries and fails. Its like a straight copy of frontier, except that this time you can't see anything in the fights because theres a giant girl face in the way. wooooo! I have no idea whats going on in this battle. Also, each macross had something unique to each character to show their expression. The girl character i mean. Minmay had an amazing voice actress, macross 7's girl had that puffy thing that mirrored her emotions, and ranka had the hair that moved on its own. Freya has the hair again...
Since Macross Delta is currently ongoing as of the time of writing, this is more of a first impression of the first few episodes rather than a review.
Story: Because it mainly revolves on combating "Var syndrome", it contains more of person vs. person battles instead of people vs. monster-like interstellar lifeforms. In this Macross we see the blur between the lines of races (with the exception of one, I think) and a whole girl group whose songs have the ability to supress the mentioned syndrome. It's getting weirder and weirder, I know, but we have yet to see the end of the series. One big thing that I noticed is that it is very, very similar to AKB0048 (with the feel, the characters, the settings) which was directed and written by Shoji Kawamori (who also directed Macross Delta).
Animation: As usual, the animation for Macross Delta is breathtaking as always, just like its predecessors. The variable fighters, the sky, everything. The only thing that bothers me is the transformation that each Walkure member has in every show. It feels kind of wrong because it is not of the "magical girl" genre. They have a science-y explanation to the effect of their songs, and it's definitely not "magic" in Macross language.
Sound: I like it everytime that Walkure is singing while there are fights ongoing. The songs make me feel the action more and more. Some songs are not memorable, though, but the very, very good songs make up for them. This is what makes me love Walkure despite their shortcomings.
Characters: There are two types of characters in Macross Delta in my opinion: similar to other characters from other anime (one big example is AKB0048) or similar to other characters from Macross predecessors. I don't really know, but it feels like there is a big lack of originality when it comes to the characters. Mikumo feels a lot like Sheryl Nome, Freyja is a mixture of Sonata and Nagisa (AKB0048) and Ranka Lee, Mirage is totally like her grandma Milia Fallyna Jenius! But I think it's kind of okay.
i seen this on youtube but i was hopeing to beable to watch it here but sadly it wont let me due to the episodes not being there for me but it is a good story i just realy wanted to know what all they said because when i watched it on youtube there were no subtiteds nor dubbed viersions