(aka Chou Jikuu Yousai Macross)
The entire planet was embroiled in the darkness of a global war, but in the year 1999 A.D. an alien spaceship plunged through the atmosphere. The ship crashing through the atmosphere left so much damage in its wake and landed on an island in the South Pacific. This alien ship galvanized the people of Earth to settle their differences now that they knew alien life forms did exist with super technology. The Earth government managed to salvage and remodel the craft which they discovered was a battle fortress. Remodeling the craft they learned alien technology, and what they discovered was variable configuration machinery. Applying the alien technology to human know how, they built transforming jets and tanks. After ten years, the alien starship was complete. They called this ship the Super Dimensional Fortress Macross. This ship was had the technology to open the curtain of space and jump dimensions through hyperspace, hence the name Super Dimensional. The entire Island of Macross which was built up around the fortress during its development celebrated its inaugural flight. That day was the human triumph of alien technology and the Variable fighter was unveiled. Before the Super Dimensional Fortress One (SDF-1) could even take off, an alien race came in search of the space ship. These powerful Zentraedi had been battling the owners of the SDF-1. With the fortress perhaps being the last vestige of this super technology, the Zentraedi were intent on capturing the ship and gaining its secrets. The city of Macross was attacked by strange alien mecha. The civilians evacuated to air tight shelters and the untried pilots battled the hordes of Zentraedi. It didnít take long for them to learn that the alien aggressors were giant humanoids standing over 50 feet tall. In order to avert the fighting from Earth, the virgin crew of the SDF-1 attempted a hyperspace-jump to the Moon. However, they jumped to Plutoís orbit and took up much of the island and ocean including two battle carriers along. The entire population of Macross was incorporated inside the SDF-1. They tried to rebuild their lives knowing how long their journey back home would be. The human pilots and their advanced mecha were only matched by the sheer numbers of Zentraedi mecha. The elite pilots had to fight tooth and nail as the SDF-1 journeyed home.
The definitive Mecha show for those of us who grew up in North America, Macross just simply has everything a show needs to be a success; fantastic and engaging visuals (for the time), characters that you care about, wonderfully innovative mechanical designs, action, romance & comedy all in a story about mankind's desperate struggle to understand and reason with a fearsome enemy bent on erradicating them. Like it's sequel Macross Plus, SDF Macross pushed the envelope for the quality of mecha shows even further than Gundam did. Even looking back now, I can honestly say that SDF Macross holds its own because of it's interesting story, fun characters, exceptional space battles and the way that it took the staples of Mecha and turn them on their heads. The only unfortunate thing about this is what happened when they forgot that certain parts of this weren't meant to be taken seriously (namely Minmay, who the Japanese fans DID take far too seriously) and as such we now have such wonderful works like Macross 7...
However, the creators can be forgiven, because they have done so much good that not even that rather painful show can overshadow their achievements. While the average otaku will probably be fairly entertained by Macross, mecha fans will be in heaven, as they see another of the great landmarks in the history of anime. Highly recommended.
Soon to be available through AnimEigo.