- HARLOCK -
Galaxy Express 999 (Guest Appearance) - Released: 8/4/1979
This is his first appearance in movies. First he appears as a symbol figure for all young people like Tetsuro. He rescues Tetsuro at the bar in Heavy Melder, and ends up participating in the battle with Emeraldas to destroy Machine Empire. This movie also contains the episode which explains how Tochiro became the spirit of Spaceship Arcadia.
"Harlock is like a big brother to Tetsuro, and I also illustrates him as a very mature figure even for Maetel. He is the man who takes a lonely journey on his own. However, TV Harlock and movie Harlock are taking completely different figures. I made him in more mature image with more confidence in this movie. In making TV series, I can not have total control over the entire product, and sometimes character's image gets altered by TV staff because of that. Therefore, TV Harlock does not have the exact image what I have in my mind. So when I was making this movie, I wanted to create Harlock just as in my own Harlock image. I made sure that movie Harlock does not have any appearance or trace from TV Harlock. Same goes with Emeraldas. I did very careful job regarding that matter in the every word they say, even in the way they say it."
I can not agree with him any more on that.
Adieu Galaxy Express 999 (Guest Appearance) - Released: 8/1/1981
He has another guest appearance. In this movie, he is a friend of Black Knight Faust, who is Tetsuro's father, and act as a observer when Tetsuro fights a duel with Faust. He also speaks a very important line defining what is the true "eternal life" at the end of this movie.
Arcadia of My Youth - Released: 7/28/1982
This is probably another most well-known Matsumoto Anime outside of Japan. So much was already said in many websites, so I won't say much more. The script is roughly based on 3 totally different episodes:
Galaxy Express 999 Eternal Fantasy (Guest Appearance) - Released: 3/7/1998
Another Guest Appearance. He rescues 999 during the battle with Hell Mazaria's ship, and he also encourages Tetsuro not to lose hope when Tetsuro was in the midst of his desperation after the solar system was destroyed. Since this movie was very short (50mins!), Matsumoto said that he had to make very special effort to squeeze Harlock in the plot. This is also the first movie where the original voice actor Makio Inoue did not play Harlock. It caused a rather MAJOR controversy among Japanese Harlock fans. Nothing against the new voice actor Yamadera, it is just the simple fact that we are so used to Makio Inoue's voice to play Harlock.
Queen Emeraldas OVA
Total volume is 4. However, volume 1&2 and 3&4 were made from the different animation studio and most of the staff members did change. I only bought first 2, since I didn't hear anything good about the last 2.
Volume 1: Departure - Released: 6/5/1998
In the first episode "Departure", he only appears as a silhouette in Emeraldas's brief flashback. He is gone to look for the special mine for Tochiro to build Arcadia, and comes back and says only TWO words! ("Tochiro!" and "Yes!") I see how much Emeraldas cared for him, all right. But at least the original Harlock voice actor Makio Inoue was playing his part, the deep voice I just LOVE to death! (Part of the reason why don't care for the dubbed Harlock at all).
Volume 2: Eternal Emblem - Released: 10/7/1998
In the second episode "Eternal Emblem", he has no lines at all. He just appears in the picture when Emeraldas mentions of him as the one of the only 5 existing owners "Cosmo Dragoon" (The Warrior's Gun).
DnaSight 999.9 OVA (Guest Apparance) - Released: 12/18/1998
"DnaSight 999.9" is based on the Leiji Matsumoto comic "Kasei Ryodan DnaSight 999.9" from Koubunsha.
Sometime in near future, the Earth was nearly destroyed by the meteor shower. Cities were ruined, and people were surrendered under the mysterious alien military forces. There were 3 selected creatures, 2 humans and 1 cat, who had supernatural abilities who were just awakened with their powers. By the influence of the meteor, they were evolved many steps ahead of others and could access to the "future memories". Alien forces who were afraid of their super powers tried to capture and kill them....
At the end, when 3 of them tries to escape the Earth, Arcadia appears from nowhere and rescues them from the alien force. Harlock and Machi appears very briefly. Harlock is, again, played by Yamadera (why??).... In the original comic, it was not Harlock but Tochiro who takes that role. Some Japanese fans became skeptical of random appearance of Harlock because of this OVA.
Harlock Saga - Nibelung's Ring Released: 1/25/~11/25/1999
The newest series of Harlock's adventure. The OVA is based on the new online Harlock comic "Der Ring Des Nibelungen", and was going to be divided into 4 major chapters: (1) RheinGold, (2) Walkure, (3) Siegfried, and (4) Ragnarok. Each chapter will contain 6 volumes (30 minutes each), so the entire serieswas going to contain total of 24 episodes. However, this series flopped and only chapter one was produced as an OVA, rest of the series was abandoned. Sadly enough, I must confessed that I felt that I wasted my money on this. For one thing, from reading the animation staff interview, the staff members didn't even seem to know Harlock all that well nor seemed to care. And their lack of interests definitely shows in the product...but below is the review from my first impression, before I finished watching all 6 volumes.
Ok, so I have seen Harlock Saga Volume 1. The first thing I have to say is that it is very DIFFERENT. It is a pretty good piece of work as an individual anime, but if you are expecting good old Harlock, whether from TV series or movies, you will be taken back by disappointment. I am telling you this up front so that you will be aware.
The one reason makes the whole thing so different is the artwork. Emeraldas looks nothing like traditional Matsumoto Emeraldas, neither does Harlock. Tochiro, on the other hand, seems to be a lot wiser, clever, and more mature, and I actually like that. Yamadera, who double-played Tochiro and Harlock's voices did an exceptionally great job on playing Tochiro compared to OVA "Queen Emeraldas". He sounds a lot more like Kei Tomiyama, an original voice actor for Tochiro who passed away, and that should show how talented Yamadera is as a voice actor. Harlock, on the other hand, is still not convincible. I suppose nobody can beat good old Makio Inoue...I am still hoping he will come back infuture "Harlock Saga" volumes. Same goes with Emeraldas voice; I was not liking her very well but it could be simply because I was so spoiled with the quality of "Queen Emeraldas" OVA.
By the way, they also use 3-D computer graphics on Arcadia on this OVA, and that looks cheap, cheap, cheap. Let's hope for the improvement on that for the future volumes.
This volume 1 is only an overture of the "Das RheinGold" which covers the story from Tochiro and Emeraldas goes to the planet Acrusion (spelling??) and discovers the whole planet was dead. They escapes from the planet when the planet blows up by the bomb placed by the thief who stole the "Rhein Gold". Tochiro and Emeraldas then head out to the planet Rhine to discover the destroyed organ, 3 maidens, and Mime. Tochiro and Emeraldas persuaded Mime to return to Arcadia, and they fly off the planet Rhein. Harlock welcomes back Tochiro, Emeraldas, and Mime, and promises to retrieve the stolen Rhine Gold from the thief.
The topic worth special attention in this first volume is the "Pilot Film" added in LD as a bonus track. I assume that was rather experimental piece, but OH BOY I was soooo shocked to see that pilot
film! First of all, it looked all so foreign, in that statement, I mean it was not very Japanese Anime at all. I seriously wonder where that pilot film was made, because it does almost look German or something. And BOY Harlock looked so DIFFERENT in that piece!!!! I wonder that's how Harlock appears for foreigner's eyes?? I was eating supper when I saw this, and I was so surprised to see that "pilot film version" Harlock, I almost got choked ("Who in the world is THAT?"). I must say that pilot film was very well made (it was more of "Nibelung's Ring" rather than "Harlock Saga"), but I can tell the portraits of characters like that simply don't fly very well in Japan.
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