In Our Next STAR BLAZERS Adventure

EPISODE 41

Talan, why so gloomy? Be happy, we are about to enter the Milky Way! You must give a full report to Desslok! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!” – Princess Invidia

This next week of STAR BLAZERS began with a bunch of table-setting for the events that would play out across the back half of the serialized story. This meant that the first half of the week was focused more on emotional stakes than space battles, as the Star Force had finally come into contact with the elusive Trelaina, and could find out both who she was and what information she might possess about the danger facing Earth.

The episode opens on board the Argo, as Doctor Sane is giving Mark Venture a haircut in preparation for his meeting with Trelaina–now that the area has been secured, he’s going to journey down to the surface to rendezvous with Wildstar and the rest of the landing party. Despite the fact that he’s never met Trelaina in person yet, Venture clearly has it bad for her. Nova gives Venture a boutonniere she’s made for his lapel. There’s a bit cut out of STAR BLAZERS where Venture gets to his landing craft only to discover that the hold is filled to the brim with Royster and dozens of other crewman who also want to go to the surface and hit on Trelaina.

Meanwhile, the Star Force landing party has made their way to Trelaina’s inner citadel, where she is waiting for them. She surprises them by asking if Wildstar is Mark Venture, and she insists that they wait for venture before she will tell them anything about why she sent her messages for help. Wildstar gives her the wilted flowers Nova gave him for her, and to their astonishment, she’s able to revive them with a wave of her hand. She gives her guests a full spread of strange Telezart food to eat while they wait.

A short while later, Venture arrives, and Trelaina greets him happily. Now that he’s here, he’s ready to tell the Star Force what they want to know. She brings up a display of the White Comet and tells them that it’s actually the Comet Empire, a huge war machine concealed to resemble a comet. Cutting to the Comet Empire, a celebration is in progress for Prince Zordar as they’re about to enter the Milky Way. Princess Invidia takes a moment to taunt the depressed General Talan about the still-imprisoned Desslok. “What a vile, uncivilized place this is!” rails Desslok as he impotently paces around his cell in solitary confinement.

Back on Telezart, the Star Force is told that the Comet Empire will reach Telezart in four days, and Earth 46 days after that. (STAR BLAZERS simplifies this to just 46 days total.) Knox is pissed that Trelaina won’t use her strange powers to help fight off the Comet Empire, and Sandor needs to hold him back. Trelaina is adamant, and asks that they return to their ship–but she asks Venture to stay with her. “We’ll see ya later, Venture!” sneers Knox as the rest of the team walks of, every syllable dripping with innuendo.

After the commercial break, Trelaina explains just why she won’t help them directly in their struggle against the Comet Empire–and it’s because her power is responsible for the destruction of civilization on Telezart. “Only a short time ago Telezart was a growing, thriving planet. We were the busy center of our galaxy, and a leader in cultural riches, too. But other planets became jealous of our prosperity and fought to take it from us. It started with isolated terrorist attacks, but it soon became a full scale war. It wasn’t so much a war between military forces. It was a deadly struggle for political power, a war against civilian populations. I remember one time after a terrible bombing raid, I came home in a daze, and I started to think of all the terrible suffering, and I felt this surge of power going out from my mind. My thoughts seemed to have an energy and a power of their own. And in spite of myself, I caused a great earthquake, and I could not stop it. My mind energy power destroyed everything and everyone. That’s the way the war was ended.” STAR BLAZERS cuts out the worst of the violence in this sequence, and the loss of life. It also makes the aggressors people from other planets, whereas in YAMATO 2, it was the different City-States of Telezart itself that were attacking one another.

Venture is sympathetic, but despite everything he’s heard, he urges Trelaina to use her power against the Comet Empire. He reminds her that both Telezart and Earth will be destroyed, but having caused the genocide of her people, she will not act again in such a way, even to save herself and her world. Frustrated, Venture turns to leave, and when Trelaina asks him tentatively to please stay a little while linger, he coldly tells her that he’s needed back with the Star Force.

Returning to the Argo, Venture is immediately taunted by Hardy as he crosses the flight deck for his inability to sway Trelaina with his charms. Hardy lets slip that Sergeant Knox told the crew all about it, and Venture, pissed off, goes to confront the sleeping Sergeant in his quarters. “Oh, hey, Venture, did miss stuck-up tell you to get lost? Look, fella, dames like that ain’t worth worrying about!” Unsurprisingly, this turns into a full-scale brawl between the two men–one that STAR BLAZERS, as usual, cuts all of the most brutal bits out of. But its still pretty intense for such a fight.

It’s so intense, in fact,t hat Doctor Sane gets beaned by a flying stool as he passes by in the corridor, followed by the whole table. Sane tries to get them to stop, but they’re both too far gone, and they’re both a bit of a mess when he’s finally able to drag them up to the bridge. After Homer asks him if Trelaina is going to help them, he’s forced to confess that se hasn’t changed her mind. “Boy, it was sure a wasted trip!” grouses Dash, “Why didn’t she put that bit of information in one of her messages?” Knox is happy to point out to Venture that he’s not the only one who feels that way.

Back on Earth, the Defense Council reacts to the information that Trelaina has given to the Star Force about the threat posed to Earth. STAR BLAZERS adds in a musical cue here that isn’t in the original YAMATO 2 sound track, a new piece of incidental music written for this purpose. In order to combat the threat of the Comet Empire, Captain Gideon thinks that the fleet will need to be reinforced with at least ten additional Andromeda-class battleships, and so construction is undertaken at double-time speeds. I don’t know whether this really amounted to anything, because we only ever see a single ship in the Andromeda style in all of the episodes from this point forward, despite the fact that what’s being built here are definitely ships with the Andromeda’s distinctive twin-Wave Motion Gun bow.

The Commander contacts the Star Force and gives them the order to return to Earth so that they can be a part of the defense effort. Wildstar gives the order to prepare the ship to cast off for Earth at 06:00 hours. As everybody scrambles to make preparations, Venture is clearly thinking of Trelaina and what will happen to her in four days when the Comet Empire arrives. And on that note, the episode concludes.

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