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As with most Matsumoto, "Queen Emereldas" is heavy on melodrama. "I am.....Emereldas (accompanied by a fierce wind that blows cape in a dramatic fashion.)" His work is pretty firmly Science Fantasy rather than Science Fiction. Spaceships are re-conditioned pirate ships with flags blowing in a non-existant wind as they sail the silent seas. Weapons are based on archaic swords and heavy dragoons. "Queen Emereldas" has all of these Matsumoto touches in spades. Honor and strength matter more than plot, and every scrappy kid has the right to be a man. The orchestral music is sweeping drama.
On the flaw side, as with "Harlock Saga," "Queen Emereldas" has a hard time with computer animation and cel animation. The two styles mix together jaringly. For some bizarre reason, the DVD switches to French about 2/3 of the way through. With a remote control it is easy enough to switch it back, but it is strange that this error got through on a professional DVD.
Storywise, "Queen Emereldas" assumes you are up on your Matsumoto. There are no introductions made for characters like Tochiro or the mechanoids. Backstory is never filled in. Someone not familiar with Matsumoto's previous work would be very confused and disappointed by "Queen Emereldas."
Still, with so little of Matsumoto's work available on DVD, each crumb dropped from the table feels like a feast. It's a fun series and I enjoy it in spite of it's flaws.
There are 2 things that are keeping me from rating this thing 5 stars. The first is the fact that the DVD encoding is horribly messed up! In episode 2, if you have the Japanese audio track on, it switches to French! The only way to correct this is to switch the audio over to French where it becomes Japanese. Then, halfway through episode 2, the French channel becomes French and you then have to switch the audio back over to Japanese. As you can see, it's sort of confusing, and annoying. I just pray that you all have DVD remote controls with Audio buttons on them, so you won't have to go to the menu every time.
The second is the actual OVA itself. I believe in giving an unbiased review, and to me, unbiased in this case means a review of someone who is not a Matsumoto fan. If I had no knowledge of the Matsumoto universe, I would wish I hadn't bought the DVD. I guess the OVA is sort of like a gift to the long-time Matsumoto fans. Also...with the exception of the very first CG shot, I can't stand the computer graphics.
Set sometime after the events of Arcadia Of My Youth, a runaway from Earth named Hirono stows away on a space freighter which is attacked by Afressian Empire posing as space pirates. They are stopped by the freedom fighter Emeraldas in her space zepplin, the Queen Emeraldas. Hirono then sets off on a old west-type planet to get materials to build his own spaceship so he can live free on his own, like Captain Harlock. The Afressian commander descends to the planet to pick a fight with whoever stopped their attack on the freighter, but is met with Emeraldas herself who brushes him off. The Afressians then launch an all-out assault on Emeraldas after taking the western planet's occupants hostage, along with Hirono. They manage to free themselves, giving Emeraldas the chance to finish the Afressian fleet. She then has a final duel with their leader, Queen Baraluda. After winning Emeraldas hands Hirono one of the five Cosmo Dragoon laser guns made by her "lover" Tochiro, the now departed creator of the Queen Emeraldas.
This was a great introduction to the Lejiverse, referencing events and characters from the other anime/manga titles. Although similar to Maetel Legend, the second episode falls a little flatter than the first, and feels like it could have just been a single 45-minute long one-shot as opposed a two-episode series. There's some good animation, even though the CGI used of the Queen Emeraldas at the beginning is clearly better than that used in the actual episodes. Worth a look for anyone who likes a decent space western.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This volume, released by ADV Films, contains the first two episodes, produced by Studio OLM (Oriental Light & Magic), of the 4-episode 1998 OVA solo adventure of Captain Harlock's... Read morePublished on November 27, 2013 by Kenneth Holland
This is a two part OAV (Original Animated Video) production which spotlights Emeraldas, a lone female pirate captain who once rode with the legendary Captain Harlock and has shared... Read morePublished on September 6, 2005 by Ronnie Clay
What is there to say about an anime consisting of two episodes running 30 minutes each? When you have a horrible plot, boring action scenes, and unbelievably terrible voice acting... Read morePublished on December 24, 2003 by JL1984
Matsumoto Leije is a man with a lot of baggage. His works tend to follow very familiar themes, use similar characters, and follow common plot lines. Read morePublished on August 9, 2000 by Cafe
DVD & anime is a match made in heaven and QE OVA is a perfect example why. Scene access, dub or sub, all at your fingertips. Read morePublished on January 19, 2000 by usagibrian
I bought the VHS English dubbed version and had no problems. Understood every bit of it and learned lots more about Emeraldas and Her Love Harisho. Read morePublished on December 15, 1999 by John Robberstad
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