It’s been years since I’ve been able to do a BW Video Review. Between illness and other life issues there wasn’t time. As it is this one was supposed to come out before I started the first Robotech adaptation comic. At this point I’m just happy it was done before we got to The Sentinels.
Macross in Clash Of The Bionoids is a re-edit of The Superfortress Macross by Celebrity’s “Just For Kids” line. Superfortress Macross is the international dub from the 1980s of Do You Remember Love, a theatrical retelling of the events of the anime series Superdimensional Fortress Macross, or as us 80s kids know it, the first Robotech war, aka The Macross Saga. I hope you followed all that. Macross has become a franchise in Japan, with numerous series and movies to its credit. It also has fans in the West, who hate Harmony Gold from keeping the “pure” version away from them in order to hold on to the original series to keep Robotech alive. They even re-released all three Robotech wars as separate series, re-inserting the blood and nudity of the originals but using the old Robotech audio, which makes ME unhappy. I guess it was their attempt to please the Macross fans, although why they don’t just release the first Macross in its original form–you know, the logical answer–and still have their Robotech versions is beyond me.
There is also hate for Clash Of The Bionoids because it is in English (anime purists insist not that subtitled is the only version they prefer, which is fine, but should be the ONLY version PERIOD) and because of the heavy editing for the same target audience as Robotech. When anime is altered for the mainstream they get antsy. In this review I do bring up why mainstreamed anime is what led to the current state of anime release while going over the movie in the form I was first introduced to it as. Is this dub really all that bad, and can I determine anything about the original version from this? That’s what this review tries to uncover.
Now to be clear, I don’t think you can pull of something like Robotech today. I wouldn’t even want to see them try. Anime is now getting released closer to how it exists in Japan, although some shows still get alterations for the mainstream, as well as kids shows that the mostly adult anime community probably wouldn’t have cared about beforehand. I’ve defended 4Kids in the past. However, things are different today and that’s a good thing. Hating on Robotech though is kind of like hating on Power Rangers as it alters things from the sentai, simply using the footage while adding in new footage for the American audience. Come to think of it Battle Of The Planets did the same thing.
Robotech didn’t simply put in a new soundtrack. They altered the story to combine three shows, succeeding where Voltron failed in creating a wider story out of the three shows it used. That’s something I plan to go over in around a few months from now when both the comic reviews and the BW Video Review gets into Robotech II: The Sentinels. Hopefully I’ll be able to do more video work between now and then but we’ll see. Life likes to mess with me.
[UPDATE] So, a company called Molebeat, a Japanese group that tracks down Japanese media for a joint group of license holders or something, tries to claim the “Zentraedi crashes into a building and Minmay runs for her life” sequence. I worked it to get past their bot only to have Victor Entertainment try to claim the last minute or so which features the end song from the movie (the whole thing because the dub cuts it off early) and for some reason the end music from Celebrity Just For Kids that I used in the end card. I had to replace it with a song from YouTube’s media library, “Fly Away” by Otis McDonald. But at least it’s finally clear. For now long I wish I knew.