Star Blazers: Space Battleship Yamato 2199: Episode 20 – “Under a Rainbow Sun”

As I always do, I will include “aka” designations for the characters, so readers who are only familiar with the English names from Star Blazers will be able to follow who I am talking about.

In the previous episode, it was hinted that there would be a major showdown between the Yamato and Domel’s (aka Lysis’) fleet. The episode delivered on that hint. Most of the basic plot of this battle comes straight from the original Space Battleship Yamato anime (Domel has a drill missile that he launches into the Yamato‘s Wave Motion Gun, and the Yamato crew has to figure out how to stop it). In this version, Sanada (aka Sandor) gets Captain Okita (aka Captain Avatar) to agree to release Niimi from the brig. Through her help, she and Analyzer not only stop the missile, but they find a way to send it in reverse… which is very important and leads up to what happens at the end of the episode. I guess that in this version of the series, this story is being used as a redemption arc for Niimi.

But there’s a twist to the story here that didn’t exist in the original Space Battleship Yamato. Here, the second-class Gamilans who volunteered for the mission are sent to the Yamato disguised as team members to kidnap Yurisha (but they think that Yuki (aka Nova) is Yurisha). Yuki is kidnapped, and Susumu (aka Derek Wildstar) fails to rescue her. From the preview for the next episode, it looks like Yuki’s rescue will be an important part of the story. During the kidnapping attempt, Hoshina is shot as a possessed Misaki looks on. It appears Hoshina has been killed, although nothing has been outright stated that this is the case. But this incident seems to trigger the real Yurisha to finally awaken from her coma. The preview for the next episode shows that Yurisha will be playing an important role.

But since Yuki has been kidnapped here, I wonder how this will affect the episode when the Yamato finally reaches Iscandar. In the original version, some characters who lose faith in returning to Earth kidnapped Yuki to try to start a new life on Iscandar. Maybe those same characters will still lose faith in completing their mission, but won’t force a female character to go with them? It will be interesting to see what exactly transpires when they reach Iscandar.

But, back to this episode: The big event with Domel that ends it is basically what happened in the original Space Battleship Yamato, except in this version, Domel isn’t the loud braggart that he was in the original series. Instead, when he communicates with Okita, he is very subdued and respectful. I have to say that between the original series and Space Battleship Yamato 2199, I prefer Domel’s characterization in this version. In the original, he just came across as an overly arrogant and one-dimensional character. In the Space Battleship Yamato 2199 anime, though, we see he has much more dimension to him as a character.

I’m looking forward to seeing how the rest of this new version of the story goes, and to see how much I recognize from the original series and how much is added or altered to fit in with the changes that were made for Space Battleship Yamato 2199.

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