Macross 2 Streaming Review
Macross 2 is a sequel to the 1982 anime series Macross 7. This show follows the adventures of reporter Hibiki Kanzaki and the enigmatic female Marduk race member Ishtar.
Ishtar possesses an Emulator, which enhances the aggressiveness of the Marduk’s Zentradi and Meltrandi warriors through music. She also has an attraction to the hot-headed pilot Nexx Gilbert.
Macross II: The Movie
While not quite living up to the original series (or even its movie), Macross II is still a watchable and entertaining entry in the storied franchise. Set some 80 years after the end of the TV series, this movie pits the UN Spacy against a new splinter race of Zentran aliens called Marduk. These new aliens are more powerful than the Zentraedi and Meltrandi, and they use singing to spur their troops into battle. News reporter Hibiki Kanzaki and ace pilot Sylvie Gena find themselves caught in the middle.
Unlike the brisk pace of the series, this film’s space battle sequences move at a glacial pace. But that’s not the only reason this movie is a bore — the story is tedious and lacks insight. And the clumsy love triangle between Hibiki, Sylvie and an alien singer called Ishtar is just plain embarrassing. Fortunately, the dazzling animation and slick mecha designs help mask some of the film’s shortcomings.
Macross II: Lovers Again
A bit of a letdown for those who loved the first Macross movie and television series. This OVA was a sequel but doesn’t live up to the standards of its predecessors. In fact, it’s a Zeta Gundam ripoff.
Eighty years have passed since the end of Macross Do You Remember Love, and humanity has become complacent in its victory over the Zentradi. Now the Marduk, a new splinter race of aliens that hates humans, attacks. This time they have giant robots and a new type of singer (emulator) who can enrage their soldiers into battle.
Macross II was the first of the Macross movies and TV series not to have any involvement from original creator Shoji Kawamori or his studio, Studio Nue. However, it did feature the work of Haruhiko Mikimoto as character designer. It was also produced by Big West which worked with the team on the original Macross TV series and the three video games that followed.
Macross II: Zero
After a few decades of peace Earth is invaded by an even more powerful alien race, the Marduk. Using songs as their weapon, this new threat is much more dangerous than the Zentraedi and Meltrandi ever were. In addition to the usual love triangles and giant robots, Macross II also includes some of its defining elements: songs and Valkyries.
In a departure from the normal Macross fare of galaxy wide crises and mecha pilots, Zero follows two test pilots with rivalry that spills over into their personal lives. This story isn’t a bad one, it just doesn’t have the same depth that fans are used to seeing from Macross Frontier and Delta.
This six episode OVA is available as a DVD and Blu-ray release from AnimEigo. The DVD and Blu-ray both include English dubs and subtitles. The DVD will also include an extra feature of commentary tracks from the Japanese voice actors and staff, while the Blu-ray will have both the original Japanese soundtrack and English dubbed audio.
Macross II: The Animation
Despite taking place in an alternate universe timeline, this Macross sequel still manages to stand out and feel quite different from the rest of the franchise. The slick animation, bright character personalities and classic Macross tropes still work nicely together to entertain.
Considering the original creators and studio were not involved, this OVA had some pretty big shoes to fill. Only the character designer and scripter from the original Macross series, Haruhiko Mikimoto and Sukehiro Tomita respectively, returned for this parallel universe sequel. US Renditions gave the animators at AIC and ONIRO complete freedom to produce this mecha series without interference.
For Macross fans who have seen the original, this sequel may seem rather familiar and contrived. The whole plot of young brash pilots overpowering huge alien ships with their fighter jets and a love triangle is very similar to the winning formula from the original Macross series. The only saving grace for this OVA is the wonderful music from Lynn Minmei, which makes up for a lot of the lack of originality.