Episodes 7 & 8: 1st Lt. Hayase pines for her lost love who died on the Martian base Salla. Then Minmay’s 16th birthday coincides with a major attack by the Zendradi.
“Bye-Bye Mars”: After three days of constant attacks, Admiral Britai of the Zendradi decides to set a trap to capture Macross on Mars with Captain Kamujin, one of the most dangerous captains this side of the galaxy. Hikaru gets a break and goes into town to visit Minmay who invites him to her birthday party the following week. Macross gets a distress signal from the Mars base Salla and 1st Lt. Hayase believes it to be Riber, an old sweetheart she still has feelings for. Since a pit stop on Mars isn’t out of the way, Captain Global orders a resupply from Salla Base. 1st Lt. Hayase requests permission to go to the base. As Macross resupplies, the Zendradi forces patiently wait for their gravity bomb to charge which would keep the Macross anchored but an overzealous Zendradi soldier gives away their position. During the battle, Captain Global has 1st Lt. Hayase activate the reactor that powers the base so the force of the explosion can dislodge the gravity bomb. She does so but decides to wait for death in the old room of Riber. Her suicidal plans are denied when Hikaru rescues her. Macross has escaped this time but Captain Kamujin vows revenge.
We get a little bit of backstory on 1st Lt. Hayase this episode! Her old sweetheart Riber was sent to Mars during the Unification Wars and never returned. Before he left, Hayase declared that she would join the military to meet with him on Mars. Props to him for saying “I’ll see you there!” instead of discouraging her.
There is also a funny moment where Hikaru asks for time off the next week for Minmay’s birthday, and Major Focker reveals that everyone on Skull Squadron got an invite, even him! So now Hikaru doubts his relationship with Minmay. I mean, I don’t blame him. You spend two weeks stranded with a girl and you’re getting the same treatment as her other guy friends. I can understand if she’s not attracted to Hikaru and unwilling to pursue a relationship, but I would still think Hikaru would hold a special place in her heart. Dudes and ladies can be friends too!
This is the third major space opera I have seen about people getting lost in space and the only one to focus on the romance of the characters instead of the drama of trying to get along while being chased around the solar system by aliens. Really adds a lighthearted touch to everything. (For the record, the other shows are Battlestar Galactica and Stargate Universe).
“Longest Birthday”: Zendradi Captain Kamujin defies orders to organize an attack on Macross. He tells a subordinate that if they are caught, they were in a training exercise that just so happened to encounter the Macross. Meanwhile, Hikaru is called to a small ceremony where he receives a medal of honor in recognition of rescuing 1st Lt. Hayase in the previous episode. The medal comes in addition to a promotion to 2nd Lieutenant and acquiring two subordinates: Kakizaki and Jenius (henceforth called Max). Hikaru takes his subordinates to Minmay’s birthday party where Minmay is stiffed that Hikaru forgot to get her a present. In the middle of the party, all Valkyrie units are ordered to scramble so everyone piles into the same taxi like a bunch of clowns. Despite his bravado, Kakizaki flounders about while Max is amazing. Admiral Britai orders the retreat of Captain Kamujin’s forces. In the battle aftermath, Hikaru chills with his new teammates but remembers Minmay when they go their separate ways. He paces under Minmay’s window, wondering what to get her, but then realizes that he still has his medal from earlier in the episode. He gives that to Minmay to her delight.
The final narration of the episode says that Macross has been traveling through the solar system for eight months now! I wonder how they’re maintaining supplies throughout this. Was the Macross equipped to handle years-long missions and thus adequately stocked? Is everyone surviving on tuna randomly floating about in space? And how is there not a worry about the number of soldiers in the Valkyrie units/military in general? Or the amount of repairs that have to be done after each battle? Isn’t Macross tired by now? Shouldn’t they be feeling the effects of being chased around the solar system like six months ago? Starting to question the logistics of this show.
I’m also starting to question the logistics of Hikaru’s relationship with Minmay. Shouldn’t she be putting some more effort into their relationship? Maybe she will now that she has Hikaru’s medal. I mean, that has to be the equivalent of going steady in this universe. “He gave me his medal!” “Oh Em Gee! That means you’re serious now!” And all that jazz.
Predicting right now the deaths of Max and Kakizaki. Stay tuned!