Saturday, August 11, 2007

Star Blazers - The Quest for Iscandar

Jumping back about 25 or so years, my older brother Peter and I used to love to watch a cartoon called Star Blazers. Star Blazers was the American production name of a Japanese series called "Starship Yamato" and is considered a breakthrough in the genre of anime.

I'm not a fan of anime, but this was our favorite program growing up. I had forgotten, but recently I was talking about the show with Peter and he remembered that we had even taken some plain white tee-shirts and used markers to fashion them like the uniforms of the characters on the show.

The theme was traditional good vs. evil, and the plot revolved around an evil planet bombing the Earth with radioactive material that was making it unlivable. People had built underground cities, but those were threatened. A princess (Starsha) from a distant planet (Iscandar) sent a message offering a machine that could clean the Earth and plans for a space engine and weapon system that would be necessary for the Earth to send people to her planet and return within a year's time (the life expectancy of the Earth). The ship used for the mission was built in the remains of a sunken Japanese battleship (the Yamato). When launched as a star battleship it was renamed the Argo.

They made an entire series detailing this mission, and 2 more "seasons" as you could call it. Thankfully, they are now available on DVD and that is what I am watching today!

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