The Earth Emigration Plan
The range of topics explored in Yamato III was massive. Religious persecution, the cold war, environmentalism, and of course, the potential end result of preventable war and catastrophic climate change: the necessity for mankind’s emigration from Earth. Yamato III sees a stray planet-destroying missile lodge itself in our Sun, accelerating its life cycle. To save mankind, Commander Todo and the president set up an Earth Emigration Plan. Thankfully, this never materializes. At least not until Resurrection.
2199 and 2202 had their respective variations of this Yamato III/Resurrection plot element: Project Izumo and the G-plan. At the height of mankind’s suffering, during the war with Garmillas, the Izumo Plan was concocted as a measure to save some portion of Earth’s people. The G-plan was similar, but more elaborate.
Izumo Plan: Find a planet. Leave some settlers. Head back to Earth to pick up as many people as possible. Abandon Earth.
G-Plan: Prep a female majority crew. Abandon Earth. Find a new planet. Settle. Breed. The “G” in G-plan most likely refers to “Genesis,” meaning origin.
While we’re on the topic, some history on the name “Izumi” is in order.
In ancient Japan, over a millennia ago, Izumo and Yamato were two politically and spiritually powerful provinces that rivaled each other in influence. Izumo was and still is often called the “Land of the Gods.” The myths and legends originating from that area of Japan in the “Kojiki” stories are seen as indispensable when attempting to understand the origin of Japanese culture. Loosely, then, one could say that the Izumo plan is as symbolically conservative as it gets. Yamato, then, is its opposite. To stick to the roots or branch out on a new journey. Those were Earth’s two options during the Garmillan war.
A Policy of Non-Aggression
When Yamato picks up the routed Captain Ram of the Bolar Federation, a fresh sub-theme presents itself: The idea of whether or not Yamato should aid Ram during a time of political strife in space. Should they provide repairs only to send him back to die? Or should they aid him in battle, political consequences be damned? Commander Todo informs Kodai that the decision is ultimately up to him. Naturally, Kodai makes the decision he finds morally just: He tries to save Ram.
In 2202, Yamato encountered this same scenario. They pick up Nagakura’s broken ship on the outskirts of the 11th planet. A deadly invasion by Gatlantis had begun. However, due to the jurisdiction of the planet being up in the air due to a tumultuous post-Garmillan-war world, the combined voices of Todo and Serizawa of the EDF order Yamato to not aid the planet. In due time, after hours or days of political discussion, rescue will come for its refugees. Yamato decides to rescue as many as they can anyway.
This idea from Yamato III was later expanded upon in 2205 with Earth’s “Peace Corps.” Serizawa, Varel and Yamanami proactively join Yamato’s voyage with the intention of lessening the chances of involving Earth in another intergalactic war, the primary party of concern being the Bolar Federation once more. Just like in Yamato III and 2202, these efforts are thwarted by the crew’s desire to repay Iscandar for their goodwill in the previous war with Garmillas. As with Todo in Yamato III, Serizawa and the others aren’t too disappointed with the outcome (or even particularly surprised by it).
The Journeys of Ryusuke Domon and Takeshi Ageha
Brief mention was given to these stories in the Characters section. Time for some elaboration.
Domon and Ageha were both new recruits introduced to Yamato III. After the death of Domon’s parents at the hands of a stray missile from Galman-Garmillas, he lashes out at the closest military figure he could possibly blame for not doing anything to help prevent it: Kodai. Unbeknownst to him, Kodai had actually gone to see their wreckage in the vain hope that there might be some survivors. There were none. This is revealed after a passionate fistfight between the two men. They’d later come to bond over their shared orphanhood.
Domon’s goal is to become Yamato’s new Tactical Chief and punish Kodai, but he is instead relegated to kitchen duty in the lifestyle unit, with Hirata as his boss. After a brief stint and fight, Domon learns to value all tasks aboard a battleship, later being given the duty to helm Yamato for Kodai on at least one occasion.
Ageha was a handsome, rich heir to a large military company – and momma’s boy – who abandoned his primrose path to become a pilot. The next-gen Yamamoto, if you will. After meeting Princess Ruda of Shalbart on planet Phantom, his heart opens up to their religious teachings of peace in the universe. He falls in love with Ruda as a person, beyond these teachings. At the end of the series, he’s forced to bid her farewell. Then he gives his life by ramming a fighter into Bolar Federation President Bemlayze’s ship, tearfully recalling Ruda’s image.
In a twist of fate, the next-gen Yamamoto (Ageha) in the original saga literally became the next-gen Yamamoto in 2199. Aspects of Domon’s arc were transfused with her new role in ways elaborated on in the Earth Characters portion of this article series, including Domon’s bonding with Kodai over their mutual status as orphans.
Ageha’s love for Ruda became Hoshina’s love for the out-of-this-world Yuria Misaki. Nanbu received Ageha’s military company heir background. 2202 created the Alphon-inspired character Klaus Keyman, who carried the aforementioned mother’s complex and the heavy weight of both Sanada’s death in Farewell and Ageha’s suicide in Yamato III.
While 2199 and 2202 took significant inspiration from these two characters, the meat of Domon’s arc has been brought back in 2205. His anger and hatred of Kodai has been expanded upon. His now single father’s death is given more ambiguity. On the day of the Time Fault’s closure, his father died in a car collision on an empty road. This was the catch for saving Yamato, Yuki and Kodai. Was it suicide? Or a tragic accident? Domon can’t help but blame Kodai, and so sets out on a path of revenge.
After almost purposefully crashing Yamato to enact his vengeance, he’s relegated to kitchen duty with Hirata. Domon helming Yamato was inspired by a scene in Yamato III, where he fires the WMG to save Galman-Garmillas. Seeing as Nanbu received this scene in 2199, it had to be reconfigured for 2205. Funnily enough, this means that Domon steals Tetsuya Kitano’s spotlight from the original The New Voyage.
Domon’s glimpse into Kodai’s true self
Yamato III had many memorable moments, though some easily fall under the radar. One of these is the inclusion of the short-lived character Hajime Hirata and his role as Domon’s life adviser.
In Episode 4, he takes Domon on a short walk, showing him the hardship his seniors put themselves through even after full days of intense combat training. But the one Domon understands the least is Kodai, who’s rigorously pushing himself to his very limits in a training chamber all on his own. Hirata explains how Kodai’s personally taken on the responsibility of becoming Yamato’s spiritual representative; a soldier with an unshakable conviction who can carry Yamato on his very back without appreciation or support. With this, the two generations grow closer and Domon’s respect increases exponentially.
2205 Chapter 1 saw Domon hit a similar slump, where he feels like he definitely doesn’t belong on the ship and most assuredly will never understand Captain Kodai. Hirata takes the boy under his wing earlier in 2205, but the original 2199 character Hoshina decides to show him who Kodai really is underneath the surface.
“I understand,” Domon says. Hoshina challenges him: “Do you…? You think you understand, but you haven’t seen or heard anything yet.”
Hoshina allows the boy to listen in to a high-level military discussion behind closed doors, where Kodai’s effectively being told – reluctantly – by the brass to let Garmillas and Iscandar be left to their fate of annihilation, lest the consequences of intervention hit Earth like a truck. Domon’s response is to curse the adults who push Kodai into a role where he has to lie to himself and the crew, then leaves with indignation. Hoshina smiles, confident that Domon’s now become aware of who Susumu Kodai truly is.
Subverting Ryusuke Domon
At the beginning of Yamato III, Domon makes it expressly clear that he wants to be part of the Tactical Combat Division. This request is denied, resulting in the new kid being relegated to kitchen duty. This soon leads to a fistfight where Domon protests that Kodai couldn’t save his parents. Throughout the series, this kid with more brawn than brains learns the hard way what it means to be part of Yamato’s crew.
Later in the story, he embarks on an exploration mission to planet Phantom with his best friend Takeshi Ageha, meeting Princess Ruda. They save her from the planet’s tragic destruction. At the end of the series, Domon commits to a risky endeavor that costs him his life, but ultimately makes sure that Yamato is able to save Earth.
Fast-forward to 2205. “Reboot Domon” has no wish to be on Yamato in the first place, he’s only there to avenge his father, or at the very least understand what kind of lunacy compelled Earth to abandon the Time Fault in exchange for Kodai and Yuki. After realizing the kid illegally altered his application forms, Kodai decides to test Domon, letting him helm the ship for takeoff in place of Kitano; getting that sweet Tactical Division spotlight early on, against his wishes.
During the course of 2205, Domon is heavily reprimanded for almost purposefully crashing the ship, but later reforms. He learns to understand and value Kodai’s heart, despite his father’s death.
2205‘s Domon has more brains than brawn. He graduated top of his class and shows little dissatisfaction working in the life support unit. During a fateful moment near the end of 2205 Chapter 2, Domon reverses his original counterpart’s role as the WMG operator, opting to smash the emergency shut-down button. He does not want Kodai to sacrifice Dessler for the sake of destroying Goruba. He won’t let it happen.
Domon and the rest of the new recruits all join up with Kodai on a youth rebellion of sorts, departing in the Cosmo Hound to reverse the tragic fate that seems to befall Dessler and Starsha, attempting to rescue the Iscandar royals and consequently save Dessler’s will to live. They succeed, but fate is not on their side, seeing as the royals perish with Iscandar. But they do save Dessler’s spirit, giving him the chance to part with the woman he loves.
Domon survives his original counterpart’s risky endeavor, becoming somewhat of a maverick for future Yamato installments. The end result? He subverted almost every single aspect of the original Domon!
First Day of Practical Training
One of the goals with 2205 was to streamline original story elements to enhance future story potential and re-energize the reboot. Instead of having a New Voyage-inspired training sequence and focus on its recruits alone, this scene was merged with the training sequence from Yamato III Ep 4, alongside completely new elements.
The New Voyage originally had a military march, a short boat ride to Yamato, Kitano almost failing to raise Yamato after engine failures caused by the younger Tokugawa, the new recruit Sakamoto showing off his arrogance, and an asteroid field exercise with Kodai. After poor communications between Kitano and Sakamoto almost leads to destructive results, they’re both forced to run through the ship in their boxers.
Yamato III had a surprise 16-hour training sequence including target practice with an assisting escort ship, unplanned food production and delivery, Cosmo Tiger training, mock-damage assessment, repairs and healing for both the engineer and medical staff, ending with an exhausted group of recruits.
2205 incorporates all of these elements and introduces some new ones. Akira takes Kodai’s place as Cosmo Tiger instructor in The New Voyage, while Sakamoto expands his role by taking Ageha’s place as the new hotshot recruit. This action is combined with the next-gen mobile armor training, where the new character Caroline Raiden takes the spotlight in Saturn’s shoal zone. Afterward, the two of them pay homage to the underpants run in fully-clothed fashion. Kitano’s role in nearly failing to raise the ship is shifted to Domon. Kitano still retains his Tactical Chief role.
The Yamato III escort ship became Sanada’s Hyuga, Kitano’s screwup during targeting practice is retained, food production with Domon is carried out 1:1, mock-damage tests – including smoke machines – comes back, as does the mock repair and medical procedures with increased focus on Miyako and Bando. The emphasis on communication between the pilots and gunnery division is shifted to Nanbu and Kato’s dispute prior to the attack on the Pluto base in 2199 Ep 5.
Struggles Between the Crew
At one point in Yamato’s journey to find a new planet in Yamato III, they stumble upon a pitstop. Some crew members settle at a bar to relax before departure. Crew members Nishina, Sakamaki and Akagi end up in a playful – but dirty – fistfight with Kodai, Shima and Raiden when they arrive to impose order. The privilege of a Captain is challenged by the soldiers under his command. And even by Shima, who recognizes the need for soldiers to find an outlet to vent their frustrations with the military. Why? Because in Yamato III, Shima’s been promoted to Vice-Captain of Yamato.
2205 does something similar by having Bando and some unnamed crew members duke it out over nepotistic privilege. The unnamed characters question Bando and Tokugawa Tasuke’s inclusion on the crew roster, because they’re the sons of Yamato crew who died during the war with Gatlantis. This fight is stopped by bridge crew members Nanbu, Aihara and Ota, with Shima making it known that he recognizes the need for crew members to vent their feelings. Hoshina takes Kodai’s place in this scenario. And just like in Yamato III, Shima’s been promoted to Yamato’s Vice-Captain under Kodai at this point. Here too, he prefers not to abuse that authority.
Kodai’s Struggle as Captain
In an early segment of Yamato III, Kodai vents to Yuki about the difficulties of carrying the burden as Yamato’s Captain; of being entrusted with the duty to find a new home world. He shows an unusually sensitive side, accepting Yuki’s support behind closed doors. 2205 has sprinkled these scenes into its narrative, tying it together with 2202’s ending. Kodai has survivor’s guilt after the Time Fault was sacrificed to save him, Yuki and Yamato, so it’s no wonder.
Religious Persecution and the Pilgrims of Shalbart
Throughout Yamato III, believers of the millennia-old Shalbart religion make themselves known. They often wear rags, but their Gamilan followers are depicted in what can be described as 70’s Matsumoto hippie wear. At one point, Yamato comes into contact with a peculiar-looking ancient vessel of refugees valiantly probing the universe in search of planet Shalbart. They’re sent on their way, with Kodai asking if they’ll wander the universe forever in their search.
Both the Bolars and Galmans ruthlessly and systematically work to eliminate Shalbart and its followers. They view religion as mind poison. When Dessler’s loyal soldier Gustav finds Phantom – the planet that provides refuge to the next religious leader of Shalbart – Dessler orders him to annihilate it. He succeeds, but not before Yamato’s crew can evacuate Princess Ruda, the next Shalbart heir.
2199 gave the religious persecution of Shalbart’s followers a facelift. Instead of Dessler detesting religion, he encourages it, turning Iscandar and Starsha into icons of religious worth. Rather than religion, he comes to despise emotional manipulation and people who try to understand him, such as the Jirel space witches.
Ark of the Stars explains what befell their race. After being persecuted and almost wiped out by Garmillas for their ability to read minds and hearts, they escaped on the Celestial Ark, an ancient space-faring vessel. Most of their kind now wear nothing but rags and look quite malnourished. After Yamato provides them with aid and motivation against an enemy they do not wish to fight, the Jirellians embark on a new journey of their own to see if they can find purpose and belonging. They’re sent on their way, with Mikage Kiryuu asking if they’ll wander the universe forever.
The persecution of Galman’s people, on behalf of the imperial guard, is still part of 2199’s story. But instead of religious people, political dissenters are hunted. People like Domel’s wife Eliza, whose exercise outfit in one scene seems to have been inspired by the aforementioned hippie dress.
Dessler’s birthday, parade and celebration of Great Galman-Gamilas
This one’s simple: Dessler’s birthday. That’s it. In Yamato III, the Galman-Gamilas HQ is scrambling for victories and spoils of war to present to Dessler for his birthday. In 2199, men like Zoellick are instead scurrying about to curry favor with the dictator, while men like Göer genuinely only want his praise. Instead of celebrating his birthday in 2199, they’re celebrating 1000 years of Garmillas, and the 100-year anniversary of the Dessler family regime. According to the new timeline set up for 2202, however, 2199 actually marked the Dessler family’s 103rd year in power. It’s from this Yamato III arc that we get all those spicy political throne room conversations.
Dessler’s address to the common folk was integrated into 2199 Ep 8. The military parade held in Dessler’s honor in Yamato III is slightly altered. In 2199 Ep 15, it’s held in Domel’s honor. Airships pass by, tanks roll down the street, people are buzzing to bless the war hero. And Dessler is just as proud of the celebration as he was in Yamato III.
In Yamato III, this parade is set the day after a limo ride with Dessler and Kodai. There, they speak intimately about Iscandar, Starsha and the family they both lost in The New Voyage. And of how Gamilas society has changed for the better. In 2199, the limo ride came after the parade, and instead of Kodai and Dessler, we got Domel, Gul Dietz and Velte Talan. Instead of jubilating over Garmillas’ greatness, they discuss the various ways in which the military, political and environmental policies of Zoellick, Gimleh and Hyss are tearing the planet apart, both spiritually and politically.
Bemlayze meeting & the origins of the Garmillan people
Upon first meeting President Bemlayze of the Bolar Federation and Governor General Boroze in Yamato III, Yamato’s crew – spearheaded by Kodai – appeals to the president’s heart to release all prisoners on planet Berth. Bemlayze laughs this off, telling them that criminals and subjects under his own jurisdiction are his to do with as he pleases, and that a Bolar Federation “member nation” like Earth shouldn’t stick its hand in their affairs.
“Member?” Kodai asks. Bemlayze explains that since they previously tried to save his vassal Captain Ram, they’re obviously part of his Federation. If not, they’re his enemies and will meet a swift doom. Kodai refuses to comply, which leads into another prison revolt.
2205 Chapter 1’s prologue depicts Dessler arriving at planet Galman, confirmed in Chapter 2 to be the ancient ancestral home of his people. As in Yamato III, these far-off cousins of the Garmillans have been persecuted by the Bolars ever since most of the planet’s population left 1,000 years ago. There’s even a statue of Mother Shalbart on-site, its eyes gouged out for unknown reasons.
The meeting between Dessler and Governor General Boroze goes through the exact same motions and topics of conversation as the ones facing Yamato’s crew and Bemlayze. The differences between the two works are superficial in origin, such as the planet, the representative Dessler speaks to, and the result. Just like his liberation of Galman in Yamato III, the revolt this time around is a success. Dessler, like Kodai, refuses to become another slave to the Bolar Federation. He refuses to yield to the “Eternal Administration” and their system of governance. Conversely, Dessler’s appeal to Boroze directly cites Boroze’s own appeal to Yamato‘s crew in their initial Yamato III meeting.
Hostile Takeover of Galman
Between The New Voyage and Yamato III, Dessler searches the universe for the perfect planetary candidate to become a new home for his people. On this journey, he finds his ancestral homeland of Galman, located somewhere inside the Milky Way galaxy. It’s under heavy and oppressive occupation by the Bolar Federation. The Galmans are chained, beaten and forced to work. Seeing this, Dessler immediately attacks, retaking this ancestral home. A great unification of his people and the Galmans results in the creation of the Galman-Gamilas Empire.
The reboot has approached this storyline in different ways. 2199’s production materials establish how Dessler’s uncle Erik unified the Garmillan provincial areas and feudal lords, resulting in the planetary nation of Garmillas that Abelt would come to rule over 103 years later. 2202 canonizes this in animated and text form, referring to this as Erik Dessler’s “Great Unification.”
Succeeding his uncle, Abelt attempts the Great Unification of Iscandar and Garmillas. This fails with devastating consequences, leading Abelt into self-imposed exile from his home. But his efforts did result in more open diplomatic dialogues between the twin planets.
2205 adapts this Yamato III storyline beat for beat with an added level of nuance thanks to the previous character-building. The Galmans are still oppressed by the Bolars. Dessler still liberates the planet. But he does so with a scheme in hand; with style. The planet’s head honcho is General Governor Boroze, the man who originally governed the prison planet Berth in Yamato III. Like Bolar President Bemlayze does for Yamato’s crew, Boroze offers Dessler his cooperation if he puts on a deadly (and might I add symbolic) slave collar. Cooperation under tyranny. But Dessler enacts his scheme, blowing up his own flagship to emit a catastrophic EMP wave. In comes Berger and dozens of more ships via the SMITE system to destroy Boroze’s defending fleet. Frakken takes care of the infantry and planetary garrison.
Before Boroze can activate the annihilation switch on the slave collars, Dessler shoots him in the shoulder. Dessler vows that his people will never be forced to live under harsh tyranny or oppression, releasing them all. Interestingly, this scene could harken back to the death of Rebarus. In Yamato III, he’s just about to order the execution of a bunch of slave workers, when he’s gunned down by a passing Cosmo Tiger. Or it could be a visual callback to when Dessler kills Miru in Farewell.
Frakken & Gaidel vs. Yamato: The One Battle Yamato Lost
This monumental event of a two-parter was adapted throughout four Episodes of 2199: 7, 13, 15 and 18. Its results were loosely adapted in 2202’s 15th and 16th Episodes. Let’s dive in.
While searching for a new Earth, Yamato encounters Frakken’s space submarines. They’re capable of moving through subspace at will. They number at least a dozen. Due to their means of travel, they cannot be traced without a subspace sonar. Domon suggests its implementation, to which Sanada agrees. Frakken’s amused at experiencing Yamato’s resistance. “Farewell, Yamato.” What proceeds is a deadly battle, ending in minor losses on Frakken’s side and a heavy hit to Yamato’s bridge, knocking Captain Kodai unconscious.
Sado performs surgery on Kodai. A nurse wipes off his sweat as he proceeds. On the bridge, Domon asks Shima if the Captain will be all right. “Let’s trust Dr. Sado,” he responds. The surgery is a success, prompting an immediate visit from Yuki. Happy to finally spend some alone time with Kodai, she isn’t sure if she can be upset about the circumstance. Some engineers peak through their door, witnessing the tender moment. Once caught, they all laugh it off. Meanwhile, Frakken decides to abandon his wait-and-see approach, opting instead to throw all his ships at Yamato. “But won’t our allies be endangered?” asks his XO. Frakken cares little.
On his way to aid Frakken is Gaidel, an old friend and superior. He’s traveling in a large, bulky space fortress. His intentions? “I would love to meet the capable crew aboard this beautiful ship.” He aims to capture it for Dessler. In a desperate attempt to evade capture, Yamato tries ramming and firing at the space fortress’ front hull. The shots just peel off. Yamato is crippled, defenseless and has nowhere to go. Gaidel captures it. After they giddily present the ship to Dessler, he flies into a fit of rage and orders its release. The Milky Way takeover – and the accidental involvement of Earth – was pure coincidence caused by Dessler’s oversight.
2199 split the bulk of this event into three parts, allowing each to present the same level of stakes as this two-parter once did. Ep 13 got the Frakken encounter, Ep 15 received the Gaidel encounter and Ep 18 the relentless pummeling of Yamato, itself inspired by the Grodez space fortress encounter from Be Forever Yamato. Yuki’s part in the scene with Kodai was stolen by Akira in Ep 7, prompting a fit of metatextual jealousy on her part.
Every single detail about Frakken, his encounter with Yamato, the subspace sonar and Kodai’s surgery was faithfully adapted, with minor alterations. Frakken’s disregard for the lives of his men was a character trait Zoellick inherited for the Balan sequence in Ep 18. And since Okita’s the captain at this point, he takes Kodai’s place in surgery, his illness being the main culprit. Instead of Shima and Domon talking about Kodai, we get Yabu, Yamazaki and Tokugawa talking about Okita. Like Shima has faith in his old friend Kodai, Tokugawa has faith that his old friend Okita will survive the operation. Instead of Sanada tacitly approving of Domon’s idea, Sanada rejects Kodai’s idea, since Domon isn’t here. Many lives are lost as a result of this decision, something that haunts Sanada. Yamato chases off the Space Hound and wins the day.
For 2199 Ep 15, Domon and Göer take turns to fill Gaidel’s shoes. Rather than a space fortress, Domel’s given the heavily armored dreadnought-class ship Domelaze III. Which evidently has armor and shields thick enough to deflect Yamato’s sustained beam barrage, just like Gaidel’s fortress. Exceptions? Yamato manages to actually ram the Domelaze III. That’s when the rest of Domel’s forces surround and start to run Yamato dry.
But victory is robbed from Domel. A call from the home planet forces him to retreat. He’s to be extradited for supposedly taking part in an assassination plot against leader Dessler. This plotline evolved from his original counterpart’s troubles at Balan, where Göer calls Vice-President Hyss behind Domel’s back and inadvertently ends up saving Yamato by forcing Domel’s restraint. This moment and character dynamic itself was carried over to Dagarm and his XO in Ark of the Stars.
In Eps 15 & 16 of 2202, Yamato’s capture and release at Dessler’s hand was merged with his prison arc from Yamato 2, except this time he’s the captor. In Yamato III, they’re likewise beaten, surrounded and captured while their Captain is incapacitated. Instead of Gaidel gifting Yamato to Dessler, it’s Ranhart Dessler (Klaus Keyman), his nephew. This time, Dessler accepts it. But after coming to some sort of understanding with Ranhart and Teresa, he lets Yamato go. They may not be friends, but that doesn’t mean they have to be enemies. This is the same conclusion Kodai and Dessler reach in Yamato III’s Ep 17.
Kodai and Dessler’s Mutual Friendship and Respect
Bits and pieces of this story have been adapted. Dessler’s love for Starsha – as revealed to Kodai in The New Voyage and further elaborated on in Yamato III – was handled in Ep 15 of 2202. The secret history of Dessler’s nation-building equally so. The future bridge of understanding that originally came from Farewell was set up in 2199 Ep 25, with Kodai meeting Dessler face to face, only to let him go. 2202 Ep 15 adapted the mutual respect and understanding that originally came from The New Voyage and Yamato III, while opting to leave some elements for future works, such as Sasha.
In Yamato III, upon reuniting for the first time since The New Voyage, Kodai and Dessler find that they’ve both grown and changed. Kodai had wondered where the Supreme Leader had gone, now happy to receive his aid with fixing their sun (dying as a result of a stray missile from Galman’s fleet). Earth has been roped into a war with the Bolars that they never wanted.
While talks are at first fruitful, the two scarred men soon come to a realization: their ideals are too different to be compatible. Dessler wants an empire run on fear. Earth wants a democracy run on openness. Even so, Dessler aids Yamato in fixing their sun.
Seeing as 2202 borrowed nuggets of both this story and The New Voyage, it’s only reasonable for the creators of 2205 to use Yamato III elements in their continuation. It begins with Kodai sending a recovered data log from Klaus Keyman to Dessler, together with an anguished concern from Kodai regarding Dessler’s whereabouts.
In 2205 Chapter 2, Kodai reunites with both Berger and Dessler. It’s just as tense and disconcerting. But then there’s the scene where their differences are made abundantly clear.
Kodai proposes to Dessler and his command structure a complete evacuation of Iscandar, focused primarily on Garmillan refugees. They agree, but Melda has one question: “Kodai, will you help persuade Queen Starsha to leave the planet behind?”
Kodai responds meekly that she won’t listen to someone like him, who has repeatedly broken the promise Okita made to her. He defers this duty to Dessler. Dessler asks if Kodai came here not to save them, but to run away from his own troubles. He walks away, bemoaning the fact that his nephew Ranhart entrusted the future to two small-minded men like himself and Kodai.
There’s no retort. They’re both weakened men who can’t face the consequences of their actions. Thanks to Yamato‘s intervention, Earth is now in a war with a hostile nation, and they would rather resolve it diplomatically. Even so, Yamato will help save the Garmillan people, creating an inverse of Yamato III‘s death-of-the-sun storyline.
If it does turn out that the Dark Nebulans are future Earthlings, then this storyline can be anchored to Dagon’s mishap as well. Rather than Galman-Garmillas being the culprit for the sun’s slow death, we have the future Earthlings being the culprits behind Garmillas’ destruction.
Yamato Saves Galman-Gamilas
Yamato’s about to enter Galman-Gamilas’ atmosphere. Youths like Domon remember the pain of growing up on Earth under the planet bombing, openly calling them demons who Yamato and Earth shouldn’t cooperate with. Kodai orders them to wait and see where the talks go. They need Gamilas’ help in order to save their sun, after all. Kodai and Dessler’s talks are fruitful, but they can’t entirely settle their differences. Dessler wants to establish a new empire, one that’s ruled through the security given by an autocratic regime. Kodai wants the universe to be free from control, and thus can’t sit quietly by.
That’s when the Bolar Federation attacks! They warp in planet-destroying missiles, past Dessler’s defenses! Yamato, under Kodai’s command, departs to bring down the missiles. Not for Dessler or for Garmillas, but for what’s right. Having also learned this moral lesson, Domon’s given the opportunity to fire at the missiles. He does and they succeed, with Talan and Dessler left in shock and awe. Yamato saved their world.
2199 adapted this story in piecemeal. Kodai and Dessler being friendly – but not quite coming to terms with one another politically – was shifted to Kodai and Melda. And later, on Leptapoda, to Okita and Dietz. Domon, Bando and Ageha’s bigotry toward Gamilas was shifted to Nanbu, with him expressing similar sentiments about “Garmillans being lying demons,” or how “destroying a planet or two” is fine if they’re under Garmillan control. Over time, as with Domon, he softens. And come Ep 23, he willingly saves Garmillas by firing the WMG. Come 2202, he’s completely shifted in attitude.
The WMG sequence was shot and faithfully adapted. Hyss and Garmillan HQ received Ghader Talan for this scene, while Dessler received Velte Talan. Both are equally amazed and surprised at Yamato aiding Garmillas.
Shalbart’s royal graveyard, Ruda’s Fate & Iscandar’s true origin
This portion has been partially covered in the “Locations” section, but there’s much more to say now with 2205 having finished up. Let’s begin.
Planet Shalbart is a pacifist world that once ruled the universe with an iron fist. After coming to terms with their own cruelty, they chose the path of peace to make up for their own mistakes. An avatar of peace, Mother Shalbart, was spiritually constructed and the word spread across the cosmos. Believing in Mother Shalbart is the same as believing in peace for all living beings.
Of course there’s no one who lives for a millennia to fill that role, so every few years a new heir to the mantle of responsibility is born – such as Ruda – who subsequently takes the former’s place as this spiritual guide. She’s not a physical being; she’s an eternal idea who carries the memories, scars and harsh truths that belie wars.
Yamato’s crew discovers this harsh truth underneath the crystal graveyard on Planet Shalbart, where the nation also buried all their ancient artifacts and WMD’s. The key to access is a necklace worn by Ruda, the heir. Shortly thereafter, Ruda and her would-be companion Ageha share a loving embrace and a tearful parting. She’s to become the next Mother Shalbart, for that is her destiny. But she says she’ll never forget him.
2199 showed us glimpses of this story, depicting Starsha as an arbiter of peace who withholds the key to mutual assured destruction via Wave-Motion Energy. She leads the “salvation of all intelligent life in the galaxy” as well, but 2205 takes the Shalbart connection even further.
Underneath the crystal graveyard first seen in 2199 lies a mausoleum, or a sanctum if you will, called Sanctel. The key to access? A crystal worn by Starsha. Here, the souls of all Iscandarians have been given an eternal existence, free from their bodies in a different way from Teresa’s people.
It is revealed that Iscandar’s dark past as a warring nation came from them destroying civilizations and worlds across the cosmos in order to crystallize and catalogue their memories as “Wave-Motion energy.” This gave them the gift – or curse – of an eternal existence. Starsha, Sasha and Yurisha are not completely physical beings, but rather avatars projected from their souls lying buried in Sanctel, to act as ceremonial representatives of Iscandar.
Garmillans were used to carry out many of Iscandar’s past atrocities, until Starsha came along and motivated Dessler’s Uncle Erik to unite the Garmillans. Ever since, Starsha has been trying to redeem her elders’ sins by subtly guiding Abelt to become the best man he could ever be. She couldn’t do as much as she wished, of course, seeing as it would go against the role given to Starsha by her kind.
Like Ruda, Starsha spends her last moments in physical form embracing Abelt, telling him these words: “I always wanted to see those eyes of yours. I’ll never forget them. Thank you…”
Note: The same strand of stars depicted in Yamato III when the Shalbart governor explains his kind’s dark past can be seen by young Kodai in 2205 Chapter 2’s Sanctel sequence.
Yamato’s return and the most powerful WMG yet
On the precipice of Earth’s impending doom in Yamato III, Todo and the rest of EDF HQ are internally falling apart. Hope leaves them, their faith in Yamato wavering. But in the eleventh hour, Earth receives a signal. It’s Yamato! After a fierce final confrontation with the Bolar Federation, Yamato fires the Hydro-Cosmogen to fix the sun. Its light is vibrant, brilliant and golden. It is much larger in scope than any WMG, and to fire it, both Kodai and Yuki hold the trigger together. This shot’s for Earth.
The first half of this scene was adapted in Ark of the Stars’ post-credits scene. Instead of Todo sweating to death, Earth’s desperation is conveyed through Cosmo Marine Saito Hajime’s account of the chaos. Earth is close to dying and riots are getting out of hand. That’s when Yamato shows up on Earth’s radar.
And the Hydro-Cosmogen? In 2199, the Cosmo DNA machine from the original series became the Cosmo Reverse System. Its functions grew closer to Shalbart’s Hydro-Cosmogen from Yamato III, in that it reverses a dying state and restores something rather than just fixing it.
In 2202, this system was reconfigured to become a defensive amplification system aboard the experimental ship Ginga. This was meant to provide and enhance allied ships with shields, but ended up being capable of strengthening the power of wave-motion weapons as well. Ginga’s CRS was meant to be a tool of peace, not a weapon for use in war.
In Ep 21, this system was used to amplify the effect of Andromeda Kai’s four-way split WMG, recreating this iconic scene all the way down to its visual direction and thematic motifs. The CRS didn’t help kill anyone, it helped Andromeda Kai power down a gravity core, saving Yamato from a dreadful predicament. “The heart of this ship came from Yamato,” as Captain Saki Todo says.