Macross Frontier 09: Microgirls and Micropants
Why is Alto so grumpy with Mikhail? Yes, he is a “bitchy pretty boy”, in the words of ghostlightning, but is there more to it than this?
Since the first Frontier-related thing I ever came into contact with was a Mikhail-Alto doujinshi, I couldn’t shake off the feeling that Alto was actually getting jealous of Mikhail’s flirting with Sheryl’s manager. But that can’t be, obviously. So I guess he’s really upset that Sheryl is interfering with his life yet again, which forces him to think about his feelings and stuff he doesn’t like to think about. Sure, he himself says he’s upset because his training time has been cut and I believe he believes that but I don’t think that’s it.
The verbal back-and-forth between Alto and Mikhail is rich. Mikhail keeps calling Alto a princess and jokes that’s he out to play at war. Alto gets really irate. The richness IMHO is in how the whole debate can be recast with Sheryl in the role of a princess. If there’s a princess-like being in this show, at least on the surface, it’s gotta be Sheryl, right? And Sheryl has just interrupted SMS operations seemingly “to play at war”. Therefore in a parallel universe you could see Mikhail’s accusation directed at Sheryl, and then Alto’s response shows quite a bit of understanding. “Don’t be fool! No one plays at war!” meaning he totally gets the fact that what Sheryl is doing is waging war against the Vajra the one way she knows how. You see how it can work both ways? A Tale of Two Princesses, this could be called. And then Ranka with her green hair could be the cute little frog. A Tale of Two Princess and a Cute Little Frog. Excellent.
By the way, why does Mikhail have elven ears? If anyone knows the answer please tell.
EXCURSUS ON LEGAL MATTERS OF THE HIGHEST IMPORTANCE TO MIKHAIL
This miclone technology thing makes the Mikhail x Klan thing kinda tough huh. As Mikhail says, if he touches micronized Klan he’s a criminal. Sex with a giant is not a crime on any law book that I know of, since the issue is age and not size so I guess that would be the way to go. (There is a good story Bukowski very much related to this though I don’t think I would recommend it to Mikhail [see here].) Ultimately it depends a lot on whether Klan’s mental state is altered when she has been micloned or not. There’s another question for Macross experts! If micloned Klan behaves just like regular Klan then we have another example of what I like to call the paleololis (Dalian in Dantalian no Shoka, Acony Lanchester in the manga Acony, etc, etc), that is, characters who are older than the lads around them but who look much younger. I don’t see how marrying a paleololi would be illegal under any current law, but at the same time I imagine legislators would immediately begin making laws against marrying people that look like children even if they’re 20, 50 or 1,000 years old. Such relationships would be too much of a sensory challenge to public morality.
SUB-EXCURSUS INTO THE WORD “MICLONE”
Japanese has a very limited number of sounds. One positive side-effect of this is that homonyms abound and puns are ridiculously easy to make. The word in Japanese is 「マイクローン」, phonetically “maikuron” with a long “o” sound. “Kuron” is the word for “clone” in Japanese, so “miclone” is a good rendering, but it obscures other possibilities. For example, “micron” is also possible, with the “micro” element for small. Also, “myclone” is a good one, playing off of the way Japanese love to say “my car” and “my wife” (“maika”, “maiwaifu”). Maybe in the future that’s what every Japanese will aim for in life: to have my car, my wife/hubby and my clone.
BACK TO THE EPISODE
And we land right at the point when Klan is asking Alto if he likes Mikhail. The writers of the show were definitely playing up to the doujinshi market there 😉
I can’t help but feel the outcome of the battle was pretty darn disastrous for the S.M.S. They have three mecha against one and they not only allow the enemy to fulfill its mission and leave unscathed, but they even get one of their own wrecked?! Darn. They better shape up soon or bring the Macross Quarter along next time or something!! I mean, ghostlightning in his post makes a good case for firepower abuse creeping up in this show (single-shot devastation and so on) so the only way to beat the overpowered foe is with your own overpowered weapon.
ABOUT LUCA’S PANTS
The only explanation for Luca wearing shorts that I can see is that junior high students at the school wear them and high school students don’t. This would break down into 12-15 yr. olds wearing shorts and 16-18 yr. olds wearing long trousers (Alto, Mikhail).
If I remember correctly, most schoolboys in Japan wear shorts up to 12 yrs. of age, and then switch to long trousers. In Thailand schoolboys wear shorts until they’re 18…