Robotech: The New Generation #18
Comico The Comic Company (September, 1987)
ADAPTATION: Lawrence Schick
PENCILER: Thomas A. Tenney
INKER: Bill Anderson
COLORIST: Kurt Mausert
LETTERER: John Workman
EDITOR: Maggie Brenner
Scott, Rand, and Annie come across an old west-style town built in a bombing crater from the second Robotech War, with a jerk sheriff who locks them up under the delusion that they want to take over the town. Their Cyclones are stolen by arms dealers that Lancer and Marlene end up stumbling across, former soldiers who decided they didn’t want to fight anymore. One of them has been trying to receive reports from Admiral Hunter’s fleet but while the receiver works the transmitter doesn’t. When they get a mission report to clear Invid bases that soldier, who isn’t right in the head, heads out to destroy a nearby base but is killed in the process, the man sending the orders turning out to be his son. Our usual heroes head out to complete the mission, with the old soldiers managing to get their damaged ship working long enough to sacrifice themselves to destroy the base.
What they got right: The part of the story in the town would just have been a rehash of a plot seen before in this series, so shifting gears to these old soldiers (which I presume was part of the first attempt to retake Earth in Mospeada but reworked into soldiers from the second Robotech War instead) ends up saving the story. In the end the old soldiers redeem themselves from selling off the old weapons and stealing the Cyclones earlier. It’s another tragic story done well, and I’m not usually into tragic stories. The fogeys even manage to pick up on something the rebel band hasn’t involving Marlene’s potential origins; even if it comes from paranoia they’ll be proven right later.
What they got wrong: Because they do a terrible job hiding Marlene’s true origins in this show and the comic adaptation. I also want to know what map the original Japanese creators were using because they are definitely not traveling in a straight line to Reflex Point given the order of places they’re passing through. Also, the town story ends up weak because of the shift even if it means not reusing the same plot line they’ve used at least twice before of the town that hates soldiers.
What I think overall: This was a good story and not a bad job overall by the guest creative team, though I wouldn’t mind checking the accuracy against the actual episode.