Okay everybody up. Robotech is back! (one last time)
The penultimate episode of classic Robotech presents the shadow fighters of the Robotech Expeditionary Force, preparing to launch an attack on Reflex Point. But the really exciting thing is that everyone has totally been telegraphing the imminent return of Rick Hunter. Any minute now.
“Any sign of Admiral Hunter yet?”
“No sir, no indication at all.”
It turns out that Admiral Hunter’s group failed to come through space fold in time, so they’re going to launch the invasion without him. Oh no! They must be saving his cameo until the very final episode, to maximise its impact.
Back on Earth, Scott and the rest of his ragtag crew have joined up with a bunch of real soldiers, the ground forces of the REF I guess? (to be honest, they could be random cosplayers, there is no explanation given). Scott, Lunk and Lancer are allowed to play with the Cyclone battalion, but the others (Rand, Rook and Annie) are dropped like hot potatoes because they’re not official military personnel.
Lancer gives his civilian buddies fond farewells, Lunk is happily back in the forces with a new jeep under him, and Scott salutes, confident that his three least qualified friends will survive the battle.
That’s assuming rather a lot.
Rand cracks at the last moment and indulges in a little creative insubordination, riding off into battle. Rook gets mad and chases him down, leaving Annie alone at the edge of a forest.
Annie promptly takes off and steals Lunk’s jeep from under him, driving him into battle.
Has… she ever driven a car before? Asking for a friend.
Prince Corg is about to fly into battle when Marlene turns up, trying desperately to stop the Invid from attacking humans. When Corg laughs in her face, she turns to Sera and works on her, trying to tell her that they have much to learn from humans.
It feels like we’ve missed a few episodes! Everything’s happening so fast. Marlene is extremely confident in her status as a human-Invid diplomat, even if her results leave much to be desired.
In the midst of battle, Rand confesses his feelings to Rook – that he’s fond of her. Yes, that’s as deep as he gets. But their mecha totally hold hands after that. Sweet!
A holographic image of a vapour cloud appears to our heroes, luring them away from the battle. When Scott looks closer he recognises Marlene. Lancer does the same, and promptly gets himself shot. Sera is devastated as Lancer falls out of the sky, a montage of Yellow Dancer images keeping him company in order to trick us into thinking he’s about to die. Sera catches him, knowing that the Invid are not going to be okay with this.
As predicted, Corg and the Regis are super judgy about Sera joining Team Human.
Marlene, in her floaty Ariel form, leads her friends into Reflex Point itself, while assuring them that the Invid were only looking for a home, not to wipe out a species. (That was a bonus) She also claims that she is a new species – part Invid, part human – which I guess makes her the closest thing they have to a neutral arbiter.
Inside, they discover the Invid hive and a very angry Regis who throws a bunch of holograms and operatic speeches at them. She makes it pretty clear that the Invid life force is more important than the survival of the human race, and starting again anywhere else would require far too much effort, so there.
Ariel argues with her mother that the humans have their own life force, and the two species should share the planet.
Scott sulks, and Lunk insists that the Invid have no right over the Earth. As representatives of Team Human, they would rather fight than compromise.
Back on the moon, REF Command (2 dudes) discuss the continuing lack of Admiral Hunter, who has apparently “given them permission” to blow up the Earth if they can’t win.
OH RICK I am so disappointed in you. Mind you, this guy you put in charge might just be saying you agreed to that because you DIDN’T TURN UP TO THE WAR.
The Regis taunts Marlene, pointing out the fear and suspicion on the faces of her friends, but Rand disagrees. They were a bit surprised Marlene was an alien, but she’s still their friend, and they’re completely supportive of her different cultural background. The Regis zaps him.
Sera is on Team Lancer. What did the Regis do to deserve this?
Corg is so over this bullshit, a loyal Invid no matter what. Why is everyone talking about feelings, ugh. He and Scott decide to express their feelings via beating the crap out of each other in mecha suits.
As everyone else stands around awkwardly, the Expeditionary Force emerges from the moon base and attacks the Earth.
“Well,” sighs Lancer, “that’s probably the end of a peaceful solution, then.”
The excitable narrator promises us a climactic battle. Corg and Scott are throwing down, mecha-style. Which means a lot of colourful explosions and slow-mo shooting.
Corg, you are not as batshit nuts as your predecessors, Khyron and Zor. No one really cares if you get blown up or not. But it is nice to see that the Robotech tradition of pretty/crazy blue-haired villains is being honoured.
So the two command dudes in charge of everything are The General and his pal Sparks. The General is all for a scorched Earth policy. Sparks clutches his pearls. “Sir!”
So many explosions.
Lancer points out to the Regis that the shadow fighters of the REF are going to wipe them out – they are outnumbered and can’t fight what they can’t see.
The Regis digs her heels in because they already had to leave 2 planets and that’s her limit.
Lancer and Sera argue for terraforming ALMOST ANY OTHER PLANET but this is the one with Protoculture, so the Regis isn’t budging.
As Scott lies bruised after being shot out of the sky, Marlene patches his wounds and tries to convince him that smooches might be nicer than war. He informs her that he is good for only one thing and runs back to the battle, leaving her crying.
Rook and Rand, on the other hand, confess their love to each other with a hint of sarcasm while fighting the enemy. Multitasking! You don’t have to choose between love and war! Also, slightly sarcastic professions of love are my favourite kind.
Corg and Rook get into a duel, while Rand yells helpful advice to her from the sidelines. Scott swings by to steal Corg away before he kills the only two people with a functional romantic relationship in this show.
After a short battle, Scott beats Corg. Later, Rand and Rook bully Scott into being less sucky to Marlene and to get over himself. Rand points out that blaming the Invid for Original Marlene’s death is stupid because they were in the military, and humans have had all kinds of wars regardless of alien invaders. His fiance could have been killed by literally anyone, so why even get stressed out about it?
I love that Rand and Rook took literally 30 seconds between resolving their own relationship, and starting to advise everyone else about theirs. They are so Smug Marrieds.
Still, they were correct in that Scott is being a tool.
The Regis has had some time to think about it, and decides to just nick all the Protoculture from the planet and ascend to a higher plane. Ok…ay. Obviously she got the memo that this is the last episode, because otherwise this is a very suspicious change of heart.
Lancer joins Sera to do some shooting in unison, to keep the Regis safe while she prepares to leave. They get in some flirting at the same time. Scott, EVERYONE else can combine love and war, you should pay attention to your friends and their mad skillz.
Sparks and his General, meanwhile, are about to nuke the Earth, because there is no decent communication in this man’s army. (this plotline is never followed through on)
Sera and Lancer are in trouble, but Scott turns up to help them out. Does anyone even know who they are fighting any more? Let’s shoot into the air because it’s poetic and the splosions are pretty!
The Regis lists all of the work she did to repair this planet from all the wear and tear caused by previous Robotech wars (including, let’s not forget, mysteriously repairing New York City), judges everybody, and drops her mic. She takes the rest of the Invid with her, to continue their evolutionary development somewhere less sucky. Regis out!
Time for Team Human to celebrate with a ‘we got our planet back’ concert. Looks like the REF didn’t blow the planet after all, that’s awesome.
Scott, who can never be happy, is leaving Earth on a quest to find Admiral Hunter who is off lost in space somewhere, and/or possibly retired somewhere to a love shack with Lisa Hayes, minding his own business.
Lunk wants a farm.
Rand wants to retire and write a memoir, and Rook mocks him:
“You’re cute but you’re dumb.” At least she knows what she’s getting into.
Yellow Dancer, at the end of her concert, reveals herself to be a muscled dude called Lancer in one of the most baffling quick-change scenes of all time. The audience are all mildly freaked out. Lancer dedicates a song to Scott, and the audience decide they can cope with an occasionally genderqueer hot boy pop star after all. Phew.
A spotlight picks out Sera in the crowd, despite it being daytime. Lancer is singing the song to her. Yeah, dedicated to “Scott,” sure.
Rook and Rand cylone off together. Marlene, Annie and Lunk jeep off together. Scott flies into space to find Admiral Hunter in the vastness of space, despite having no clues whatsoever. Is he – planning to check all of space? Does he have a system?
In the final moments of the final episode, the excitable narrator tells us that next week… we get to start ALL OVER AGAIN from the beginning. Noooooo, excitable narrator, how can you do this to us?
Though, I totally could. Rick, Minmei and Lisa, I’ve missed you so much!
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