Space Battleship Yamato 2202 Report 50

August was another month without major Yamato news, but general activity actually ticked up slightly with continuing installments, lots of fan activity, and unexpected surprises lurking in the corners. Here’s how August 2020 kept Yamato fans on their toes…

August 2: Remote music by Chor Stella

Remote music performances have been a rare source of pleasure in COVID world, sometimes bringing together combinations that may not have happened otherwise. In August, an ensemble group of up-and-coming opera singers called Chor Stella made the Yamato theme their fourth remote performance project, and the results rival Isao Sasaki himself.

Get a load of this knockout on YouTube here.


Photo at right posted on Twitter by Take Channel 36

August 5: 1/350 Diecast Gimmick Model Vol. 80

Hachette’s first volume of the month was another simple one, containing the motor and rotation gear for the pulse laser batteries. Soon they would be called into service.

See Hachette’s instruction video here

See an unboxing video here

See a modeler’s blog here

August 7: Art exhibition announced

Kio Edamatsu’s name came up quite often in our past reports, since he served as an animation artist on both Yamato 2199 and 2202 and wasn’t shy about sharing his layouts from various episodes under the name EDAKIO on Twitter. On August 7 he announced that he was preparing for a solo art exhibition to open in Tokyo late October. If we’re lucky, an exhibition book will follow.

See the event website here

Visit Edakio’s Twitter page here

August 12: 1/350 Diecast Gimmick Model Vol. 81

Ahoy, wings! Despite the number of new parts offered in this volume, there wasn’t much assembly to be done this week, merely the gluing-in of two magnets that will hold the wing onto the hull. Even putting the two halves of the wing together was to be postponed until the next volume arrived.

See Hachette’s instruction video here

See an unboxing video here

See a modeler’s blog here

August 12 & 19: Radio Suite Yamato Extra Edition


Photo posted on Twitter by cyuniapplelove

Shortly after Clover Radio streamed their third annual Yamato music program in May, they announced an hour-long followup called the “Extra Edition” that would feature tracks that didn’t make the cut. This was a fortuitous decision, since it was also announced that Clover would cease broadcasting in September, so if this annual tradition continues it will have to go elsewhere.

The hosts talked their way through 22 tracks that ran the gamut from classic favorite to rare gem. None of these were BGM or film score tracks, instead coming from symphonic, live, tribute, and concept albums from 1977 through the 40th anniversary. The rarest gems included pieces from Kazuko Kawashima’s solo album Second Story, the Yamato Steel Suite by heavy metal band Concerto Moon, and an elusive CD called Heirloom featuring Akira Miyagawa’s performances with the Osaka Shion Wind Orchestra. The program premiered on August 12 and was repeated a week later on the 19th.

Of course, there is enough Yamato music (rare and otherwise) to fill many more hours like this, so let’s hope someone else picks up where Clover left off.

August 12: Online auctions

It’s always a delight when one of the original Yamato production artists emerges from the shadows of history, moreso when they create something new for everyone to enjoy. In this case, it was artist Shinya Takahashi who created Sasha for Be Forever and was chiefly responsible for character design on Final Yamato.

Starting August 12, he unveiled a new series of five Sasha paintings for sale on Yahoo Japan Auctions. They’re now in the hands of elite collectors, but we can still get a look for ourselves. See them larger and revisit some vintage favorites here.

August 13: Andromeda popularity poll

In July, the entertainment website Akiba Souken gave fandom a treat with a huge character popularity poll, which we shared here in our last report. As soon as that one closed, a new one opened for mecha with a deadline of August 15. And then, probably to keep the results from overbalancing, they split off a whole separate poll just for everyone to vote on their favorite Andromeda. That poll closed first after amassing over 4100 votes for no less than 23 different candidates.

Remember when we were all chomping at the bit to see just one Andromeda on screen in Yamato 2202? We were all so innocent then.

See the original post here and see the poll results in English here. (Yes, no kidding, 23 different Andromedas!)

August 14: Star Blazers Lambda, Chapter 4

Artist/writer Ryuko Azuma delivered the fourth manga chapter of Space Battleship Yamato Next: Star Blazers Lambda online for all to read. This time, intrigue runs deep with the introduction of opaque agendas and the mysterious Seilenes aliens arrive for a second battle against Topness…which doesn’t go nearly as well as the first.

See Star Blazers Lambda at Web NewType here and read a full rundown of this chapter here.

August 15: Mecha popularity poll

The results of Akiba Souken‘s main mecha poll were announced today. The top two choices will surprise no one, but keep in mind that you’re dealing with a lot of superfans with a LOT of time on their hands…so the subsequent choices become delightfully eclectic as you make your way down the list.

See the original post here and see the poll results in English here.


How much did Susumu Kodai earn on the round trip to Iscandar?

August 16: Pash Plus article

Pash Plus (the online extension of entertainment magazine Pash) published this unique article, demonstrating that you can always find a little more toothpaste in the tube. Full translation follows:

How much did Susumu Kodai earn on the round trip to Iscandar in Space Battleship Yamato? What is the price of protecting Earth!?

By Takeshi Uchiumi (Yoshimoto Writer’s Academy West)

Doesn’t everyone know Space Battleship Yamato? Even if you haven’t watched it, have you heard the theme song? When I was a child, I watched it on TV every week. This magnificent SF anime sparked a big boom in the 70s and had a huge impact on the anime world after that. Sequels were made, there was a live-action film, and remakes are also being broadcast. In the live-action film, Takuya Kimura played the main character Susumu Kodai, and Meisa Kuroki played Yuki Mori.

Kodai was 18 when he was a trainee at the space training school. He joined the military for the 148,000 light year journey to Planet Iscandar, to retrieve a radiation removal device from Queen Starsha to save Earth. Earth was polluted by radioactive Planet Bombs launched from the Gamilas Empire, and without the device all life would die out in one year.

In contrast to such serious drama, there is the everyday story of how much income Kodai would have earned on the voyage to Iscandar. I made a test calculation based on the salary of the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force. The limitations are that I consulted only the first Yamato TV series, and did not include work that wasn’t depicted on the screen.

● Special nighttime overtime pay

Since it is space, the concept of midnight cannot be defined, so this is excluded.

● Corpse processing allowance

He might have been involved with the burial-at-space scene, but he wasn’t shown working on screen. Yuki Mori’s death-like scene is disqualified since she revived.

● Since evaluation standards are unclear, a government officer’s salary ranking starts at grade 1.

(In a general company, the salary goes up with higher grades and with the number of years worked.)

First, it can be said that the closest thing we have to a Self-Defense Force is the JMSDF. If so, Kodai’s status as a trainee would start out as a Seaman 2nd class. The operation period is 364 days from the formal boarding of Yamato. We’ll assume full-time work with two days off for the weekend, so the operation totals 260 days.

I have to wonder if it’s possible to take a proper vacation. There are 114 crew members on a 265.5m vessel. I think you could take vacation days without a problem as long as there are no vacancies. In addition, it is shown in the story that there are substantial recreational facilities, so you should be able to get refreshed while on board. But we can’t be certain about the second half since there are casualties that cannot be replaced. Also, there is no overtime pay.

Let’s calculate it based on the following details… [Translator’s note: all yen prices converted to 2020 US dollars]

◆ Basic salary

Seaman 2nd class: $1,595 X 9 months = $14,355
Seaman 1st class: $1,792 X 3 months = $5,376

(Promotion occurs after 9 months)

◆ Hard work allowance for fiscal year ending in June

(Paid as a bonus to persons in office as of June 1)

$1,595 X 2.05 = $3,269.75

◆ Year-end hard work allowance for fiscal year ending in December

(Paid as a bonus to persons in office as of December 1)

$1,792 X 2.25 = $4,032

(taking into account promotion after 9 months)

◆ Travel allowance

(Allowance paid to a ship’s crew for the number of days from departure to return)

$16.70 per day X 260 days = $4,342

◆ Boarding allowance

(Allowance paid for performing out-of-port activities on board a ship with residential facilities as specified by the Minister of Defense)

Seaman 2nd class: $1,595 X 9 months X 33% = $4,737.15
Seaman 1st class: $1,792 X 3 months X 33% = $1,774.08

(taking into account promotion after 9 months)

The following constitute special duty compensation:

◆ International emergency aid allowance

(Allowance paid for dispatching international emergency assistance when engaging in overseas work)

$40 per day X 260 days = $10,400

◆ Aviation work allowance

(Allowance paid for work onboard an aircraft as specified by the Minister of Defense)

Kodai sorties a total of 10 times on a Cosmo Zero (fighter)

Total for all of the above (tax included): $49,135.98

What do you think? I think a lot of people would grumble about that. By the way, the average income in the first year for high school graduates is $26,000. Could you earn an annual income of $50,000 at the age of 18? It’s a bit cheap to protect the Earth, isn’t it? I think someone would get angry about that…

If you scrutinize it a bit more, I think the amount would go a little higher in the latter half of the series since Kodai serves as both combat team leader and the deputy captain.

I don’t know much about what goes on behind the scenes, since I do not have SDF experience, but I couldn’t find anything that looked like a job title allowance. After all, it is thought that the promotion system to a higher rank gets you a corresponding salary. Even if there is activity that deserves promotion, Kodai would remain a Seaman 1st class since there is no official written appointment.

It’s a sad part of the class society that this amount cannot be doubled. And when you think about it in general terms, an 18-year old is a new member of society. But his achievements in risking his life to protect Earth are worthy of praise, and Kodai may be the youngest person to win the National Honor Award.

August 18: Music performance by Lilium

Lilium is a singer specializing in Celtic-style ballads, and she occasionally crosses over into the anime world on such titles as Macross and Elfen Lied. She rises to our attention here because on August 18 a video was posted on Twitter in which she does an absolutely gorgeous rendering of the Infinity of Space theme. Upon further examination, it turns out that video was recorded two years earlier, and the piece is part of her regular repertoire. So settle in and enjoy…

March 2020 performance

Visit Lilium’s Youtube channel here

Visit her Facebook page here

August 19: 1/350 Diecast Gimmick Model Vol. 82

This week, the reason for not assembling the first wing became evident when clear parts arrived along with the wires for lighting them (yes, the wings have their own running lights). Once this was done, the midsection of the hull (third bridge attached) could finally be mated with the forward section. Also included were the upper and lower halves of wing #2.

Overall progress note: as of now, the model stretches 70cm (27.5″) long. At that length, it has already surpassed all but one of the Bandai model kits on its way to 95cm (37.4″). See its competitors here.

See Hachette’s instruction video here

See an unboxing video here

See a modeler’s blog here

August 19: Mt Fuji Kawaguchiko Music Festival 2020

Even far removed from Japan, you could feel the disappointment when a concert scheduled for April called Yamato Meets the Classics was cancelled due to COVID-19. It would have given us the very first father-and-daughter performance of Yamato music with Akira Miyagawa and his pianist daughter Chiko. Four months later, we got a make-good when they both appeared at this socially-distanced music festival and played a duet of Yamato Into the Maelstrom.

Watch the performance on YouTube here

Visit the event website here

August 25: Star Blazers/Yamato Premium Fan Club Magazine Vol. 8

There was still no announcement of 2205’s premiere date, but the striking Nobuteru Yuuki cover art for this 56-page volume fronted for several articles on the fightercraft and pilots of the Yamato reboot series. This included an interview with two real-world pilots, a mecha roundup/ranking, an interview with Mecha Designer Junichiro Tamamori (look for it in our next update), a round-table discussion between fans and pros, a small art gallery, and a talk with Bandai product manager Hirofumi Kishiyama. Aquarius Algorithm continued with Chapter 4, and Junichiro Tamamori contributed a one-page “Mechanic Idle Essay” as seen above right. Text follows:

If you look at the reality of mecha, the question “could a space battleship/space fighter exist?” can be exhausting. Fans have long discussed whether it’s necessary to have “the shape of a ship” or “the shape of an airplane.” However, you can also play with the idea of looking at the animation visuals in front of you with “the eyes of the heart.” The work of mecha design shifts back and forth between that idea and the visual appearance.

As for a “space fightercraft,” do you need wings? I think of it the other way around: “a pilot has mobile space weapons, so they are consequently mounted on wings.” Then there is a moment when other problems are settled in sequence. The inevitabilities of a manned vehicle; technology to protect the pilot, placing weapons such as missiles and cannons…

Personally, I think about a shield system that doesn’t go as far as the Wave-Motion Barrier, something that existed before Iscandar technology was acquired. We believe that battleships and fightercraft equipped with beam weapons will be established. The wings are heat-dissipation plates and weapon carriers, and advanced antennae on the wingtips are for the transfer of energy and shields (from the mother ship to the fighter, or from fighters to each other). As a result, it starts to look like a fighter of the old days. The remaining issue is, “is it piloted”?

This text and illustration are personal considerations, not official concepts.

How are you all doing? The new mecha design for 2205 is in full swing, and every day I adjust my brain as I work on multiple mecha. Feel free to use this Cosmo Tiger II’s special markings as the mood strikes you. I drew this as a fictitious “performance test” model built after the war with Garmillas.

Junichiro Tamamori Profile

Born in Okinawa under the American administration, now working as an industrial designer. He has played an active part in the field of mecha design and concept design. In addition to the masterpieces of Yamato 2199 and 2202, he worked on the TV anime Scarecrowman (2008) and Gargantia of the Verduous Planet (2013), and the novel Dark Blue Brigade (2016). He also provides mecha design for the ongoing Star Blazers Lambda manga.

August 26: 1/350 Diecast Gimmick Model Vol. 83

The last volume of the month included remaining parts to finish the second wing and it finally moved past the bridge tower to begin building the smokestack missile launcher. There are two different panels that fit into the top of the tower with missiles launchers either open or closed. (Though nothing launches out of them, alas.)

As of this week, the model reached 75% completion with 27 volumes still to come.

See Hachette’s instruction video here

See an unboxing video here

See a modeler’s blog here

August 28: Yamato in Panama

This is a one-of-a-kind story guaranteed to warm your heart. Musician Noriyoshi Murakami goes by the Twitter handle N-BRASS and teaches brass players at a Turkish University. On August 28, he posted a video clip of a Panamanian marching band with the following explanation:

A friend in Panama contacted me, “I know this is a Japanese song, but I don’t know the title! Please tell me if you know it. I’ve been looking for years now.” I was happy to tell him when he asked; it seems that the score was unknown when it was transcribed, and I’m impressed by the enthusiasm of the performance.

To fully appreciate the significance of this, here’s what probably happened: the conductor of this ENORMOUS brass marching band heard a symphonic version of the Yamato theme, not knowing what it actually was, and liked it enough to put time and energy into transcribing all the individual parts by ear. It’s likely that none of the performers know where it came from, but they’re knocking it out of the park. And this may be, to date, the largest group of musicians ever to play the theme live, onstage or off.

The performers are the Banda De Musica Virgilio Escala PPS, a student band belonging to the Pedro Pablo Sanchez High School in La Chorrera, Panama. Watch them here and be amazed.

August 30: Akira Miyagawa on Twitter

As we’ve seen the month of August leaned decidedly toward Yamato music, which is always a good thing. Akira Miyagawa tied it all together at the end of the month with this Tweet, accompanied by snapshots of a piece he wrote as a youngster that his father incorporated into the BGM catalog of Yamato III. The caption read:

In the production process of Yamato 2205, I am confronting my score from forty years ago. I’ll see you again… At that time, I was not conscious at all of writing a song, I was just writing desperately to see what I came up with. It’s a wonder that it remains a “song.”


Also spotted in August

Yamato Crew products

The online store for Yamato crew announced two sets of “mini colored papers” with printed images on them in a watercolor style. Measuring about 4.75″ by 5.25″, blank versions of such papers are sold in art and office supply stores with textured paper attached to card stock.

The art was designed to complement the paper texture, and two sets of five were sold in the latter half of the month. See them at Yamato Crew here and here.

Fan art

The more we looked, the more we found. See a character gallery here and a mecha gallery here.

Fan models

August is typically Japan’s hottest and most humid month, so fans literally sweated over their model benches to bring us another massive collection. See gallery A here and gallery B here.

Cosplay

The cosplay category was completely owned by Hikonasakemuyou, who tuned into the 2205 vibe by reviving Sasha from 1980. She also provided an extremely rare glimpse of the character Sara from the notorious 1985 Nishizaki feature film Odin. See her photo gallery here.

Keisuke Masunaga art

Speaking of Sasha, these terrific pieces by animation artist/character designer Keisuke Masunaga also floated back up to the surface in August. They represent her appearance in the Playstation 2 games based on Be Forever.

Architecture from 2199?

Twitter user Fuumazz spotted something familiar and posted it with the following caption: “Is Yamato looking for tenants?”


Click for enlargements: photo 1 | photo 2 | photo 3

Tsuruga statues

Twitter user Masunag shared these photos from the Leiji Matsumoto Symbol Road in the coastal town of Tsuruga. All of these famed statues were removed a few months ago for reconditioning, and are now back on display where they belong.


Click for enlargements: photo 4 | photo 5 | photo 6

One side of the Symbol Road is devoted to Galaxy Express while the other is devoted to Be Forever Yamato. Take a virtual walk down both sides in our Yamatour 2009 travelogue here.

Yamato in Taiwan

We close this month’s report with an unusual artifact shared on Twitter by “Nazohiko.” This was the explanation:

Space Battleship was released by Taiwan’s Taio [Great King] Publishing Company in 1977. The manga by Akira Hio (1974-75) was copied by a person who calls himself “Umi.” Yamato was broadcast in Taiwan in 1980, and the manga landed first.

Nazuhiko isn’t kidding; “Umi” literally redrew the Akira Hio manga frame by frame. Results aside, we definitely must applaud the sheer amount of labor this would have required if “Umi” covered all 622 pages.

See Nazohiko’s Twitter post here.

What’s Next

After all this time, a new model kit! Akiba Souken launches two more popularity polls! A candidate for prime minister proclaims, “I like Space Battleship Yamato!” All this and more in our next report! Until then, follow our Facebook page for daily posts and breaking news!

Editor’s note

Hi, everyone! Tim Eldred here, stepping out from behind the editorial curtain to thank you for your continuing attention to Cosmo DNA. Many of you followed my Star Blazers webcomics over the years, and after I finished The Bolar Wars Extended in the summer of 2015 I launched into an original project that made its online debut April, 2016. It’s an SF story titled PITSBERG and it’s unlike anything I’ve done – or seen – before.

Click here to see this experimental tapestry of art, music and animation for yourself. The final chapter is now in production and will be published this fall. I hope you like it!

4 thoughts on “Space Battleship Yamato 2202 Report 50

  1. When do you think we’ll see some proper 2205 news or even a trailer. I’m hoping it will be October but could be later, due to current world affairs.
    I unfortunately only cam across Yamato mid 2202 so I wouldn’t know how the series starts, just how it ends.

    • You’re asking the question that’s been at the top of my list all year long. The original announcement was “winter 2020,” which could extend anywhere from December through March 2021. If that were still valid, we would almost certainly have a release date now. My feeling is that they’re waiting until the last possible window closes on theatrical viability, then they’ll shift it.

      There’s also the matter of the 2202 compilation film, which would be released first. I assume that will be the gateway into 2205 promotion.

      • I suppose that may have now been answered. Considering what YamatoCrew tweeted out. January 15 I believe is the date for when we get the recap movie of 2202. If that is true and Im not an idiot, then we may get Chapter 1 in March or April, for 2205.
        Do you start the 2205 reports on the month of the first trailer or on the month of C1s release?

        • 2205 reports will begin as soon as there’s enough 2205 news to overwhelm 2202 news. That’s likely to happen soon after the 2202 compilation movie is released.

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