Robotech Rewatch 57: Aliens Cloned My Girlfriend

Original Recipe Marlene

Original Recipe Marlene

Keep your scanner tuned to this station. Robotech is back!

Episode 70 – Enter Marlene

Finally after all that running around in circles (cough, padding, cough, dinosaurs), actual plot development!

The Invid Regent has finally realised that Scott and his team are a serious threat after that time they sort of accidentally blew up her Genesis Pit. So she’s going to get a secret agent to infiltrate their little bikie gang. Via glowing egg.

Scott leads his friends to a rally point set up previously by Admiral Hunter, where he expects to meet up with other REF (Robotech Expeditionary Force) units before heading to Reflex Point and kicking Invid butt. Instead, he finds a mecha graveyard of destroyed ships and corpses, and is absolutely devastated with grief and loss of hope.

Rook and Rand get impatient with Scott’s depression after about ten minutes, and go off to raid the damaged mecha for parts and weapons. In the rubble of a destroyed town, they find strange, glowing substance that burns Rook’s hand. (It’s also the same colour as the glowing egg we saw earlier.)

Rand is startled by the appearance of a glittery naked girl who talks a lot like Lisa Hayes (same voice artist). He panics and tries to shield Rook from the horror. Rook assumes that he stole the girl’s clothes which is… strange.

Rook covers the girl with her jacket, but she doesn’t seem to be able to talk to them except by copying what they say. Amnesia? Shock?

The Invid sneak after them, observing but not attacking. And that’s not suspicious at all.

Back at camp, Lancer and Lunk are delighted at all the firepower and new fighters they’ve found, but it doesn’t make a dent in Scott’s depression and he makes Annie cry.

“They’re awesome and as aliens come they’re probably the worst.”
Lancer to Scott, summing up the Invid in a nutshell.

Scott has lost all faith that humans can defeat the Invid. He stares sadly at Marlene’s holo image in his pendant, with her virtual response to his marriage proposal, and angsts tragically about it. He even has visions of Jonathan Wolff which shows how miserable he is.

Marlene_Ariel_34_largeThings are about to get complicated! Because the amnesiac woman that Rand and Rook bring to the camp looks (and sounds) exactly like Marlene, with red hair. (Actually she looks more like Jean Grey and/or Madeline Pryor, but OK) Just at the point where the team might start questioning their new “friend,” the Invid attack, which sends the girl into a screaming frenzy of fear.

Spurred on by his imagined memories of Marlene standing there screaming, Scott finally snaps back into his normal violent self, leaps into the alpha and shoots up the Invid, hero-style.

Lunk brings the new girl and Annie along in his jeep, where Annie makes a joke about hoping the new girl doesn’t like peppermint candies, otherwise the others would never tell them apart.

Well that solves the mystery of why Rand always calls Annie ‘Mint’ but… oh, Annie. The difference between you and this woman is that she is an adult. Annie’s inability to recognise that she is a child is starting to look weirdly pathological.

The stage is set for some actual interaction between the team and the Invid that doesn’t involve shooting at each other. Ooooh. It is, however, deeply concerning that Scott doesn’t think to mention that this new mysterious stranger looks and sounds exactly like his dead girlfriend. Surely that would be a suspicion trigger to at least one of them.

Then again – maybe she doesn’t look like Marlene at all? It’s hard to tell because so many of them basically have the same face, but now I come to look closely with the benefit of the internet, their eyes are drawn completely differently. Their hair is different too. I always thought back in the day she was supposed to be really similar, but it’s presented here like any similarities between them are his hallucination.

Maybe she doesn’t even sound like Marlene – it could be all in Scott’s head, or he assumes that it is? Maybe the original Marlene never existed either, and he constructed her based on his unrequited crush on Admiral Lisa Hayes-Hunter?

Oh, Scott. Things are going to get so much worse before they get better. I wish I had sympathy for you. But you’re still a tool.

robotech thirdThis weekly rewatch of classic animated space opera Robotech is brought to you as bonus content for the Musketeer Space project.

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