Sunday, November 25, 2012
OBSCURE O.V.A.S, *Queen Emeraldas
One of the more standout "Lejiverse" titles from the 90s was probably this 2-episode OVA series. Queen Emeraldas shows the pirate queen from Captain Harlock in her own solo adventure. Set in the same apparent continuity as Maetel Legend, Galaxy Express 999, and several other Leji Matsumoto anime, Emeraldas is a renegade wanderer fighting for human freedom across the "sea of stars".
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.