The year is 2067 AD. Mankind has set out from Earth to prevent their inevitable extinction and has now made contact with numerous races in the galaxy. While their empire grows ever larger, a threat emerges in the form of the “Var Syndrome”, which drives its victims to acts of violence that claim countless lives. In response to this threat, a squadron of fighters known as the “Walkure” emerge, using the power of song to neutralize the Var and help bring peace and order to the galaxy. At the center of our tale is Hayate Immelman, a laid back youth who has a knack for piloting mechs, who stumbles upon a stowaway on his last day of work. This stowaway, Freyja Wion, has a dream of joining the Walkure squadron, and after an attack by the Var prompts their arrival, Freyja seizes the opportunity to make an impression and join the Walkure in their fight against the Var.
While the series hasn’t officially started, episode “.89”, as they called it, aired just last week and gave us a glimpse at what the series has in store. To start with, the animation is killer. The bright colors of the Walkure combined with the expertly animated air-battles make for some high quality entertainment. If this is any indication of the conflicts to come, it will likely be some of the more breathtaking action sequences of the season.
The characters are fun, though you can’t expect too much to judge them on in the first 20 minutes or so. Freyja plays the energetic and optimistic lead very well, with Hayate her unwitting and somewhat annoyed companion. The members of the Walkure all had brief moments to express their unique personalities, though what stuck out most was their brightly colored outfits. Finally, the mysterious Aerial Knights provide a solid contrast with their design, both aesthetic and personality-wise.
Of course, it wouldn’t be a proper Macross title without some great music. While viewers unfamiliar with the franchise might find the concept of doing battle while singing sugary-sweet J-pop a little over the top, fans of Frontier and other Macross titles will find themselves right at home. If you want another (much older) comparison, just take a look back at Bubblegum Crisis, which aired just a few years after the original Macross. The songs are fun, catchy, and will likely be on the playlists of many anime fans by summertime.
Overall, a promising start to another chapter in the Macross franchise. I’m certainly looking forward to staying on top of it, though it won’t be arriving until Spring 2016…still, we have plenty to keep us busy until then anyways. In the meantime, I’ll be humming the Walkure theme.