Space Battleship Yamato 2199: Sampler and Review

[Here is a guest post by meister Mandel of the Integrated Leijiverse Timeline :D]

It looks like this is going to be every Star Blazers/Yamato fan’s wet dream come true.  They’re sticking to the original story and the original music (with just some slight tweaks here and there), but giving the whole show a MASSIVE graphics upgrade.  Still faithful to the original concepts and designs, just updated and tweaked a lot.  Can’t go wrong there!  Yeah, it’s the newer “bland” generic character style, like you see in Yamato: Resurrection and with a lot of anime shows these days, but they may have done that to appeal to younger audiences.  Personally, I don’t have a problem with it, although I do kinda miss the obvious telltales of M-san’s handiwork.  Anyhow, here’s a solid 10 minutes from the first episode.  Judge for yourself.

It’s all in Japanese, but Star Blazers/Yamato fans don’t need a translation.  We KNOW the story … !

~ by Haloed Bane on April 14, 2012.

21 Responses to “Space Battleship Yamato 2199: Sampler and Review”

  1. There are versions with English (and Portuguese) subtitles floating around. But only the first 17 to 18 minutes in two parts. The last part is up in places but is not subtitled (reasoning being the translator was using transcribed Japanese to translate and no one put up a version of the last part with a transcription).

    I enjoyed the episode. Some people have seen the second episode as they have the BD or saw it in the theater. But few to almost no reviews of either episode in English. Looking ahead they seem to be going faster with the story so they have room for these new characters later on.

  2. Any word at all on what Leiji thinks of all of this?

    • Nothing I’ve heard about Matusomto’s thoughts on the project. As far as I know it didn’t even come up at the last large gathering in December, though there is another one in July I think. Maybe it will come up at that point…if it isn’t a sore issue or something.

      • Hmmm…I’d love to know. July huh. I bet you someone will ask then, unless specific instructions not to have been given beforehand.

  3. Here’s a link to the subtitled verison …

  4. Some comments on the sub …

    1) “Cyan gas” – cyanide gas, subtitler’s error

    2) Amateratsu – the Japanese sun goddess, code name (?) for the alien ship from Iscadar (a golden comet?)

    3) Yuki Mori (Nova) is a staff officer in UNCF HQ, like in the second Yamato movie

    4) Admiral Hijikata (Gideon) is also attatched to the UNCF HQ – which answers a long-standing question about what he was up to during the show’s original first season

    5) The UNCF observation post on Mars is built inside the ruin of Port Arcadia – an obvious shout-out to Matsumoto-san

    6) The UNCF knew three weeks ago that “Amateratsu” was coming. That’s why Kodai (Wildstar) and Shima (Venture) are on Mars. They know it’s supposed to land there.

    7) Notice the contemporary-ish ship’s crew ball caps? (grin) Nice touch! I’ve been wondering if that would ever be used beyond the old Argo Press comics.

    8) We learn for the first time the name of Admiral Okita’s (Avatar’s) ship at the Battle of Pluto – the Kirishima, after the WWII battleship of the same name. In fact, all of the ships in the UNCF fleet are named after famous Japanese WWII warships – Yukikaze, Isokaze, etc. Ties in nicely with the WWII flashback in the original … and which we’ll probably see updated, too.

    9) There’s an all-new UNCF “cruiser” desing in Okita’s fleet we haven’t seen before ….

    10) Uzume – code name for the Amateratsu retrieval operation. There is a well-known Shinto myth involving Uzume and Amateratsu ….

    11) All the Earth ships are using missiles at the end because they’re the only weapon they have that’s effective against the Gamilons.

    12) Have you ever stopped to consider that the Battle of Pluto is akin to WWII’s Battle of the Sibuyan Sea – just like the first half of the Battle of Saturn in the second season is essentially the Battle of Midway? And again, the Gamilons are essentially the Americans in disguise … no insult intended to my fellow countrymen.

    13) In the original series, the Battle of Pluto was fought solely as a one-way suicide strike against the Gamilon base on Pluto. In the revamp, it’s to clear a hole in the Gamilon blockade of the Sol System so the “Ameteratsu” can slip through.

    14) If the revamp is following the original, then Okita’s son is the one in the “pit” console beside Mamoru Kodai (Alex Wildstar) who starts the singing aboard the Yukikaze. We’ll see about that ….

    15) Keisuke Yaminami (Be Forever Yamato) is Okita’s executive officer aboard the Kirishima.

    • You hear in this that the code-name for “Amaterasu”‘s breakthrough to Mars is “The Ama no Iwato has opened”. This is also straight from the legend: Amaterasu is locked inside the Ama no Iwato cave, Uzume is sent to lure her out, Ama no Iwato opens and Amaterasu comes out. This is a central legend in Japanese Shinto.

      Couple that with naming Okita’s ship “Kirishima” as you said and it’s clear that the revamp is, far from toning down the traditional-nationalist framework of the original, intensifying it somewhat. Wow.

  5. Here’s the second part, in the raw!

    Some “raw” comments

    1) Sideways “snag” of the Mars “boat” – evokes the sideways launchings at the start of the SDF Macross feature film. An interesting change!

    2) The date of the Battle of Pluto has been changed. It’s now 17 January 2199, as noted on the grave marker on Mars (2199.1.17).

    3) Yuki (Nova) does the narration of events from the start of the Earth-Gamilas (Gamilon) war up to present, instead of the show’s narrator. She’s apparently giving a lecture for elementary school students. Hmmmm!

    4) The Gamilas (Gamilon) bombardment of Earth began in 2194, per Yuki’s (Nova) recounting of events. Watch the date on the screen behind her ….

    5) Look carefully at the right side of the bulletin board in the classroom, starting at 4:29 in the clip. Foreshadowing, perhaps? *grin* Or maybe a child artist inspired by the Yamato Project?

    6) Nanbu (Dash) tries to put the moves on Yuki, starting around 4:56 in the clip!

    7) Is it me, or do the UNCF HQ staff uniforms evoke the “military red” Starfleet uniforms of ST2:TWOK and later TREK TMP-ish era feature films? If so, yet another Trek shoutout by yet another anime franchise (DIRTY PAIR was one of the first).

    8) All UNCF uniforms now have shoulder epaulets to show rank, and shoulder patches to show current duty assignment. Shoulder patches were first employed in the Comet Empire story arc to designate fleet/squadron assignments.

    9) Yuki’s (Nova’s) hair is longer than in the original, and it is blond instead of auburn. Then again, her hair color did get lighter the longer the original Yamato franchise went ….

    10) A refreshing new take on the first meeting between Kodai (Wildstar) and Yuki (Nova), starting around 5:20 in the clip ….

    11) Something new! Underground trains are used to connect the various underground city areas. There wasn’t enough budget in the original to show this ….

    12) How did that drunk Dr. Sado (Sane) earn such a kawaii nurse?! (starting at 6:30) I wonder if she’ll be renamed “Penny” in any English dub, as with the third season of the original?

    • I’m delighted that they focused so much on the fact that Mori resembles Sasha. This is a big deal I think.

  6. And here’s a not-so-good clip of the rest of Episode One

    More “raw” comments ….

    1) The initial confrontation between Kodai (Wildstar) and Okita (Avatar) gets a new player – Hijikata (Gideon) – who defends his fellow officer’s actions. A bit of a shoutout to the second season of the original, and the first meeting between Kodai and Hijikata in that. In the original, Hijikata was Godai’s flight instructor during cadet training and was impressed by the young man’s talent.

    2) Dr. Sane doesn’t look so funny anymore, as in the original. He looks like … well, an old man with dentures! One clear case where the “new look” doesn’t work. He’s still got his sake bottle, though! That’s something, anyway.

    3) Kodai (Wildstar) was born on July 7, 2178 (file on Okita’s desk). He is also at the top of the list for potential crewmembers for the Yamato …

    4) Hijikata (Gideon) is present along with Sanada (Sandor) when the Iscandarian message capsule is decoded for Fleet Commander Todo (General Singleton) and General Serizawa (General Stone)

    5) The redesign of Serizawa’s (Stone’s) character makes him even more menacing than in the original – or ridiculous, depending on your point-of-view.

    6) Check out the flight squadron jacket at 3:00 in the clip! Another nice touch of reality – and they’re even using squadron numbers this time around.

    7) The escape of the Prowler recon plane is made more realistic. To wit, our heroes took off in a plane that was undergoing maintenance. Its guns weren’t loaded with ammo, and it had engine problems to boot – which is why it wasn’t on the flight line. THAT’s why it was “available,” and that’s why it crashed.

    8) New ending credits song. I don’t particularly care for it myself, but it sounds like what you might hear in a newer anime. Another newgen concession?

    • Isn’t Kodai here much more respectful than in the original, when dealing with Okita?

      If I heard correctly, they mention an “Operation Izumo”. Izumo is the shrine of the main Earth god in Japan. Amaterasu is the main Heaven goddess (shrine at Ise), so here we have the two fundamental components of the Shinto religion…

      I only picked this up now for some reason: Kato’s first name, Saburo, is shared by the most celebrated ace in WWII: Saburo Sakai.

    • Here is a better copy of that last part:

  7. It is possible the planet bombing campaign as a whole started in 2194 but the war with the Gamilus seems to have started in 2191 (“eight years ago”). Possibly after the UNCF stopped the Gamilus advance at Mars.

    The child that spoke I believe was Jiro Shima. Shima’s little bother.

    Cyan gas is a shortened use of Cyanide Gas. What use it would be on a starship, I don’t know. It also could be something else. Cyan = blue…so, Blue Gas…”Must be from Kentucky”.

    A leaked image from Episode Two suggest Okita’s son likely died in a previous battle and was a ship captain like the elder Kodai. Likely died at the Second Battle of Mars (the wrecks in Yuki’s flashback are of that battles) Basically it is the classic picture of Okita with his son and daughter that he brings with him on the voyage.

    Images on the main website confirm that Gantz and Schultz (Pluto Base Command) are white skin toned as oppose to blue like Dessler and Dommel. It is suggested that they are to represent the nature of the large Gamilus Empire, with conquored races that serve the Empire much like Rome’s conquored peoples served the Empire. Loyal military service for citizenship.

    The two Kodais don’t seem to be as hotheaded as they were in the 1974 version. The producers say that is because the ideal hero in Japan is no longer that of the hot headed youth, nor is thoughts of the aftermath of the ending of the Second World War or the Occupation on the minds of the youth today or even the older fanbase as the are in their 30s to 50s generally and were born after those events happened.
    This might be why Sam in Ozuma comes off as really out of place these days. He is the brash hotheaded youth that one would expect in the 1960s and 1970s and even 1980s. But he comes off as out of place and foolish now. More foolish than Daiba…and that’s hard to do in most Harlock series.

    • I see, I see. Gantz and Schultz are from the planet Zarts, which was conquered by Gamilas. BTW, while we’re on the subject, don’t we all hate the new Dessler character design? He looks like a, like a, douchebag. I’m very upset.

      The Ozma Sam deal is very interesting. I did notice that young people commenting on crunchyroll are terribly upset with Sam’s foolhardiness. As a person who’s always been horrified at the same character flaw in Daiba, I sympathize completely. I don’t know that he’s more foolish than Daiba, though. I guess he’s lucky he’s only got 6 episodes to do stupid things in 😀

      I wonder what other changes will we see that are prompted by the changing historical mentality of the Japanese. So far I find the story fundamentally on the same nostalgic level as the original.

      • We’ll see when Dessler is animated (as oppose to just pictures). His face is taken from a real person this time. A Russian fan named Anton Kholodov from what I understand. Guess the Japanese wanted Dessler to look like a foreigner. Still no word on who is voicing him or Dommel yet.

        I don’t know this Anton, so I can’t say anything about his face myself. I can tell that he’s dying his hair to blend in as he lives in Japan for some form of musical schooling. An earliy photo shows he is blonde. This information is avalible at

        • I know who the guy is and I do see the resemblance. My apologies 😦

          • Good that you know people. I’m mostly out of the loops save for on the gaming end of things.

            For other people’s reference:
            Anton (2009)

            Anton (image used as reference for Dessler)

            Dessler Soto (2199):

            • Not know people, know of them. I’ve never really talked or met with any of the epic fans (defining “epic fan” as people who have actually met Leiji).

              I guess the best way for me to atone is to say that the world can be glad I haven’t been picked to be a model for the new Capt. Harlock. If they actually announced that I was, I’d be the first to protest 😀 Tochiro on the other hand…

  8. While I don’t know what Leiji thinks about this project, there are a lot of things that makes me think they either did talk to him about it, or at least they respected him enough to add little touches here and there.

    Such as the renumbered Kirishima…now 555.
    Or that the size of the crew of Yamato is now 999 people.
    Or that they basically have left his mechanical designs intact (if much more detailed than before).

    But the think that will tell most is what they do with the elder Kodai. His story is the one that could follow several paths. I don’t think they will change it from the older 1974 version…but there are…hints…that they might. I could be seeing things though.

    • I feel the same way that you do. There must have been some kind of conference between Leiji and Nishi Jr. I hadn’t noticed the number thing, but that’s total proof right there!!

      Fascinating to see what Mamoru Kodai will end up doing…

  9. I highly approve of this series. I can’t wait for the movie to come out later this year!

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