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A Lovingly Assembled And Comprehensive Reissue--Classic Anime Gets A Deluxe Treatment
on September 30, 2011
The beloved anime classic "Robotech" was certainly one of the earliest and most influential imports to hit U.S. television in the mid-eighties. Many attribute its success to helping launch an entire industry. The complete collection of eighty-five episodes has been released many times through the years with increasingly confusing titles and varying degrees of quality. But I'm pleased to report that this reissue is NOT just some slapdash repackage haphazardly arranged for a quick buck! No, this is one of the most lovingly recreated box sets that you're likely to encounter. And this series and its fans really deserve it! The designers worked closely with original "Robotech" producer Harmony Gold to present the episodes in a new re-mastered quality and with countless original special features. In terms of visual quality, this ranks as the crispest presentation of the franchise that I've ever seen--although keep in mind, it is a classic series that will never look as pristine as its contemporary counterparts have the potential of being. Without a doubt, this is an easy recommendation for fans discovering the series for the first time. If, however, you own previous versions--the upgrade is essential only in how invested you are in the extras (which I will speak to shortly). I will say that the Complete Collection is a 17 disc limited edition with 4 discs (individually cased and in an outer slipcase)--one for each of the three segments of the series, one for special features. In all, there are over ten hours of optional features.
Obviously, I will not dissect the plot of the entire show--but I do want to include some information for a new generation of viewers. A true epic told in three distinct parts, this tale begins with the discovery of an alien spacecraft and the impressive technology it presents. Using this information, Earth is able to construct a mechanized army using advanced robotics that will arm them against the potential alien threat. A mysterious power source (protoculture) is at stake and the invaders will not relent until it is theirs. Told in three successive stories, this is classic mecha anime, great action and riveting drama. If you think the Transformers are cool, I'd suggest this is actually much better! "Robotech" was technically brought together from three separate anime series, but Harmony Gold brilliantly assembled them into consecutive generations of the same story. For reference sake, there is the Macross Saga (First Robotech War with 36 episodes), the Robotech Masters (Second Robotech War with 24 episodes), and the New Generation (Third Robotech War with 25 episodes). Any of these will hold up on their own (and they are being released separately as well--without the 4 bonus discs of extras) but the series achieves its true genius in its entirety.
What makes this an incredible new edition, besides print quality, is the abundance of extra material. While (as of 9/30/11) this information is listed with the product description, I will highlight my favorites in case the product description eventually merges with previous releases (as happens often here) and becomes more confusing to potential collectors.
Exclusive Features NEW to this set: Making of Robotech documentary (terrific for true fans), Robotech Music Videos (fun if not essential), Robotech Overview (surprisingly informative), Alternate versions of several episodes (another great feature for fans), Robotech: The Movie supplementals (didn't really care), Macross Original Pilot (great bonus), Promotional Reel about China Launch (didn't really care). In addition to all this new material, some noteworthy returning features include deleted scenes, The Sentinels, original pilots, and original animation as well as other press related and promotional features.
Again, if you already own "Robotech," this double dip is only necessary based on how valuable you think the extra content will be. I loved the comprehensiveness of this new version and the loving detail used to reconstruct all these great features. If you've never taken the "Robotech" plunge, however, now is the time! An awesome and important series with a box set befitting its classic status. KGHarris, 9/11.