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Killer Robot

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Everything posted by Killer Robot

  1. I don't see that they were in direct competition. Humans have admired and worshipped whales and birds, used them as inspiration for vehicles, and even now are trying to figure out how to understand whale communications, determine the extent of their intelligence, and duplicate the properties of their skin for making better low-drag ship hulls. Are whales superior to humans? At being whales, perhaps. Comparing humanity to the Protoculture is a much simpler deal due to genetic relation and similar modes of life, and even that's complicated sometimes.
  2. Also Battle Frontier and Battle Galaxy seem to both be more than twice the mass of Battle 7, which is what I really find interesting.
  3. Nah, that's the thing. Having seen DYRL before SDFM, I think I can say the DYRL version of the Star Wars trilogy would be more like this: --- Okay, I took some liberties there. That changes Star Wars more than DYRL changed Macross, but I was running quick and off the cuff. My main point is that there's exposition enough to keep it from being totally baffling but it's still a leap from one awesome action/effects scene into another with little to bridge it together sensibly, and a lot of shortcuts making both the characters, and the wider story, have a lot less impact. Where's Luke's origin as a farmboy with dreams? Han's place as the selfish rogue turned upstanding hero? Darth Vader's true origin and eventual redemption? Why did the whole idea of the Jedi and the Force get condensed to a magic amulet? Sure that stuff isn't so much missing in watching the movie as just not included, but its absence still lessens the full effect of what made the full story compelling. Sure, I understand that DYRL had to hack out most of the TV show to fit into a two hour movie, and it couldn't be done any other way. And it was visually stunning, no doubt about it. Just that what it lost in translation was meat as well as fluff, and what was left might not be confusing, but it's still a disjointed rush that gives a much different story and theme if you haven't seen the full thing. A down side of the Frontier movie is going to be that there won't be such a leap between its animation quality and that of the TV series: even if it ended up getting big budget treatment, I don't think there's as big a gulf between a high budget animated movie now and what we saw in Frontier as there was between DYRL and SDFM. But, on the up side I've seen the TV series now, so if the movie(s) cut out a lot of important things it's not like I don't know them already. Provided it doesn't reinvent things too much, but it feels like it won't.
  4. I can agree, finances really are a big part of why the bottom fell out of the anime market over the last ten years or so. DVDs in Japan have really strict price controls, other merchandise isn't exactly cheap either - it ends up being a medium that's supported by the fans hardcore enough to pump all their disposable income into it and the rest just don't bother. I believe there were also some changes to television censorship in the late 1990s which drove anime which wasn't fairly sanitized and kid-friendly into late night time slots, where of course it gets no ratings and has to pay for itself through merchandising...which of course all sells to the hardcore fans. So the whole things ends up becoming a vicious circle. Expensive discs of shows marketed to a niche audience only get bought by a niche audience, which causes producers to market even harder to their core audience, etc. I suspect if they cut all their media prices in half there they'd see an explosion in popularity and profitability over the next few years, especially on titles that aren't fetishistic, but convincing companies that they can make more money by cutting margins and moving away from their core audience is a hard thing.
  5. I never said that it had nothing to do with fanservice, and to my knowledge no one else has either. It being handled well enough to get away with is exactly my point. From my end of things, it seems a more common viewpoint is the opposite: that if there's sexuality, it must be empty fanservice with no meaning, just porn for obsessive shut-in otaku. Which isn't unique to anime, I'll clarify. In discussion of movies, TV, books, etc., a lot of people will likewise behave as anything that's not G-rated (other than horrific violence, possibly) is the same whether it's a respectable story, a low-budget T&A movie, or outright porn. It's important that while Frontier was often sexualized, rather little of it of it felt out of left field, badly-placed, overlong, or there solely to add in more fanservice like the feel I get from so many other modern anime. Even the things that raised warning flags for me ended up veering in unexpected and often clever directions. So while I can't blame people for seeing a fanservice element to Frontier, I can't see it made equivalent to the current, or even past, crop of series that have barely enough substance to get the camera from one bouncing breast or panty shot to another. I suppose this isn't so much the central issue as a symptom, though. I feel a lot of older fans came into Frontier looking for something to hate. Some of them found it in Frontier not being the gritty military drama they were looking for, devoid of the whole culture and song distraction. Some of them found it in Frontier not being good clean kid show fare. Some of them found it in Frontier not being all about older people than SDFM - or about the same people who were last seen in SDFM. Some of them found it in how it didn't make them young viewers new to anime again, seeing something totally new and cool that they'd never even imagined before. Itano, perhaps, found it in how they didn't offer him a paycheck. Dissatisfaction is easy to find, when you want it: you just have to watch without open eyes. I almost was that fan, and now I'm glad I wasn't.
  6. Have you seen all that much nose art? A lot of it looked like it was painted by a third grader and a lot of the rest was directly copied from pinup calendars or cartoon characters or the like. Or if you mean suggestive content, I did a quick search but I'm pretty sure most of the striking examples were things I shouldn't post here due to yet more explicit nudity and sexual reference so I'll stick with this one. If this sort of stuff got by in the 1940s, it's a little silly to be too prudish about it today. As for whether the original 2D art really needed made into a figure, I don't know: a bit excessive, yes. On the other hand, I won't call some sexy Sheryl figurines more money-grubbing excess and shameless fan exploitation than yet another remolded and/or recolored VF-1. As for Sheryl's place as a sex object, yes, it's definitely a factor. And a significant part of her story as well. The occasional offhand comparison of her stage manner to that of a stripper is pretty apt: sexual and exhibitionistic, yet aloof and untouchable, doing things that on the one hand might feel embarrassing and objectifying, on the other hand are presented as ostensibly proud and on her own terms, and yet behind both of those are her being manipulated and marketed by management to sell: just tickets, albums, and world domination rather than drinks and house fees. It goes beyond that too. Sheryl is really the first of the Macross idol singers who is presented to the audience in full flower of popularity, established and known throughout the galaxy, with marketing machine in full effect. We saw some with Sharon Apple in Plus, but that was colored strongly by her presentation as "the first virtual idol." I'm rather impressed by the range official art done of her: some sexualized like that, some very much clean, but all very much glamorized and marketed in style, and easy to see as in-setting promotional work in the way that the nude shots of Mylene in the ending credits weren't so much. Even with the sexualized parts, it's important to Sheryl's character how much of this is a facade, or at least a contrast between her public and private self: from her first episode improvisation where she shows she's a quick-thinking performer rather than a vapid idol, to where she gets embarrassed being seen half naked not on her own terms but as just a teenage girl face to face with someone (yes, "girl slaps guy for being seen naked through no fault of his own" is a tired fanservice cliche but one that long predates the modern moe era), to discussing her body as a selling point even while showing her more ordinary side. It also isn't out of place with presentation of sexuality in modern media - not that these things were absent in 1982, but they were presented differently, and placed in a show by and large aimed at a younger audience than Frontier. In any case, Sheryl's sexual side might get more screentime than Minmay's zero-g shower scene, but it's got more relevance to her actual story, and it's far enough from the common "constant meaningless stream of breasts, panties, and innuendo" in actual fanservice anime as to really not belong in the same category. Is it fanservice? Yes. Is it out of context, unbelievable fanservice? I hardly think so. Really, I sympathize with the idea that anime has become increasingly catered to its hardcore audience and thus focusing on their unhealthier, shallower, and more self-referential tastes at the cost of becoming less accessible to the more mainstream fan. It clearly has done so, enough to make me stop watching anime very often. It made me reluctant to watch Frontier, given some of the earlier presentation of the show. Then I watched it, and it won me over gradually. Sure, the disease in the industry as a whole is there, but is Frontier really a notable symptom? Sorry, Itano, I can't hear you over the sound of awesome mecha action and coherent character development.
  7. Granted, even there it gets a little weird, since presumably they all were cloned into full size rather more quickly than that indicates: Milia wouldn't have had much time to become a celebrated ace famous well beyond her fleet if she had spent most of those years growing in a tube. Lives of non-cultured Zentradi are so different than those of humans that really saying much about age is complicated.
  8. I won't dispute that, it's just that Frontier really has limited similarity to those.
  9. You, sir, have made my day. It really is interesting to see how time and nostalgia make people lose perspective so totally. I mean, I have my complaints about some of the thematic and demographic shifts of modern anime too, and Frontier isn't totally immune to them either, but some people blow it so out of proportion that if you applied the same logic SDFM would be an unwatchable mess of sex jokes, trippy magic bicycle flashbacks, and badly animated knife fights.
  10. I've noticed a lot of people, not so much in this thread but in general, get totally thrown by the different hair color. In the series, all of her original stage outfits came with their own unique hair color, and you never saw her onstage in her offstage color until, what, episode 21? Now, it does go for a little bit of a sinister look, though I'll try not to read too much into that any more than I'll try to read too much into the crotch zipper. It will be interesting if they do something much different with Sheryl's role in the conspiracy, but at the moment my guess is on SK teasing us more.
  11. I'll say it up front: I'm not a big fan of Mikimoto's character designs. I love his watercolor illustrations, but the designs behind them have never really been one of my favorite parts of a show. Maybe some is that I started Macross with Plus and didn't see the original until I was already in my twenties and well-familiar with anime, so isn't a fresh or novel old memory. And like Lindem Herz said, to me the character designs don't really look to stand out from their era any more than Frontier's do now. Similarly, I like Ebata's designs quite a lot, but it might be fresh attachment to the characters too, and there are some aspects I like less than others.. I haven't voted yet, but I'm leaning her way just since she grabs me more at the moment. Still, I agree with what others have said in that it's not fair to ask this until some more time has passed.
  12. None of them was a former crossdressing kabuki star whose friends called him "Princess," so it would have been really strange if they had.
  13. Found cleaner scans of some of the images posted earlier, and a few new ones. So huge, in fact, that I had to make them much smaller for the board not to choke on the attachments. To answer, Michael does appear in one, if just in a little thumbnail screenshot.
  14. Destroids are neat and all, and seeing more of them would be nice, but I can't fault that. "The next Macross should be all about the regular land mecha" is one of those suggestions that goes on the shelf next to "The next Macross should be a gritty military drama without any of that singing and love stuff."
  15. I for one will be surprised if movie version Alto has that kind of bustline.
  16. That's just it, for me. I felt that DYRL had basically no character development to speak of: even what illusion it had was based on assuming the viewers had all seen SDFM and were able to mentally fill in the blank. Where it was strong was being vastly more visually detailed and appealing than the TV series was. Frontier doesn't really have that option: even if the movie was all new animation and even if it was a careful, high budget work, it likely wouldn't be nearly the visual step up from the TV series that DYRL was in its day. This doesn't mean I'm saying it's doomed, mind: if they do some new things, show us some new sides of the characters and events rather than simply recap them, this could still be something much worth watching. Apparently putting Sheryl ringside at that first battle vs. the Vajra will be one such thing, and I'm interested to see how it turns out. As an aside, am I the only one that doesn't get the "Sheryl shouldn't have left the concert!" argument some people have made? Seeing she was ordered to, everyone else did, and it's not like she had any reason to think she could do anything? It'll be interesting to see her there, but I've never been sure how her getting in the limo was a failing on her part.
  17. It's explicitly the case that Protoculture cities/relics/ruins have been found, but it's just much less clear whether they've been found on Earth outside of DYRL. If nothing else, the events of Macross Zero being kept classified until the 2050s suggests that no other Protoculture relics were found on Earth, or that they were also kept secret. Or at least, I think there's really less reason why those events would have stayed so secret for so long if Protoculture ruins on earth and a special ancient song were not just uncovered but featured in a major motion picture.
  18. If you want to come up with some justification for it, in SDFM the main reason to make more destroids than Valkyries was cost - and then they turned out to be less valuable than Valkyries because of how much combat turned out to be air/space based due to the nature of the war. Combine that lesson with increased focus on space fleet defense in the era of human expansion through the galaxy, possibly with VF costs dropping faster than destroid costs, and with the sort of focus on fighters that's sometimes remarked on/complained about with the real world military? It just stands to reason that destroids would get no love from the UNS/NUNS/etc. We might see more when it comes to defending planet-based installations or something, but we really haven't seen that in animation since that time with Hikaru.
  19. One part of lack of upgrading in factory satellites is that they haven't had any engineers staffing them to design upgrades in thousands of years: everything's been on autopilot since the Protoculture stopped sending orders. Similarly, the mecha and ships themselves were in a state of stasis because there was no one to change them over millennia. Or to perform repairs, or presumably do much more than reload the weapons. Zentradi mecha seem to be reliable and durable, but on the other hand they're all fundamentally disposable, much like the Zentradi themselves. The Protoculture put a lot of effort into designing a proxy warfare system which was powerful, mass produced, and above all something they didn't have to put much of their own time and resources into maintaining once created. This would lead to the observed effect of highly standardized and fairly static designs, while what new research there was went into the Evil series and other exotic things. Now, on the other hand I grant that Protoculture technology on making the Zentradi fleets was fairly mature already, not in the same rapid growth phase of human technology in the Macross setting. I just wouldn't call it a "pinnacle" so much as a "worse is better" approach: the situation where something simple, dependable, and cheap is preferred over something complex, finicky, and expensive. It looks like humans are definitely improving and outstripping the Zentradi technology they've gotten access to, and that modern ships and VFs are more efficient fighting forces ship by ship and ton by ton than classic Zentradi designs. Further, the design philosophy leans a lot more toward preserving the life of those fighting: the Zentradi were disposable to the Protoculture as their ships, and human designs seem to be heavier on ejection seats, escape pods, and ship defenses. One part of this sudden growth is that humans picked up what the Protoculture had made and used it as a starting point. Once they got some basic mastery of Overtechnology there was really nowhere to go but up. Past that, the cost comes in production and maintenance. Humanity needs its armies of engineers and maintenance crews, it's based around soldiers who are also full citizens within a developed culture, and it seems to be less wholly automated even if there is heavy use of the captured factory satellite. So by that comparison, even if humanity makes better and faster developing stuff, they're putting a lot of constant hands-on effort in, limiting production in part to manpower, and overall taking the opposite approach to the "army of self-sustaining robots" approach of the Zentradi fleets. The Protoculture certainly could have done better than the Zentradi fleets we've seen, but then they would have had to keep hip-deep in them upgrading and designing and fixing compatibility issues and all those other things that they made the Zentradi fleets to not need. I expect that Zentradi mecha/ship variants made for cultured UNS Zentradi have some hybrid of this approach: they're clearly based on the rugged classic designs and probably share a lot of parts, but I expect to see a lot of upgrades that boost performance and crew survivability at the cost of needing more (which is to say any) maintenance. That was one of the points that came up after the factory satellite was captured: it was very nearly worn down and production was down to a fraction of what it once was. It was automated and designed to run for very long periods unattended, but it wasn't quite zero maintenance. It's entirely possible that, had the Protoculture not went away, they would have send the occasional support crews to tune them up. It's also possible that they just let factory satellites wear out too, and made new ones to replace them. To clarify on my earlier points, clearly the Protoculture did not expect to put zero effort into maintaining and developing their military forces (take the Evil series there, for example), they just tried not to get their hands dirty in the day to day and year to year.
  20. I like this. It sure beats the occasional ridiculous implication (And explicit statement in the Macross Frontier manga, as I recall) that the VF-1 may be old but is still great all around and able to keep up with the new stuff. There's loving classic designs, and then there's just dismissing progress.
  21. As a note, since it's easy to miss if you use ad blocking software, you might not want to give direct links to Danbooru here: even if the image is clean they'll use definitely NSFW ads last I checked. I think Safebooru, which is the same site only with adult content filtered, would be a better idea if you must give links rather than attach.
  22. I got it off Danbooru, and the artist tag there was kutsuno. I don't know who that is, but they've got a bunch of Macross art there, at least most of which has been in this thread already.
  23. Yes, it is. And Basara looks just bored enough for it to be believable.
  24. At least it's not just Frontier getting attention:
  25. Oh, neat. That's the outfit from her tour poster, isn't it? I hadn't seen art of her actually wearing it before.
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