Thursday, May 27, 2021

Star Blazers, Episode #24


In this installment of the first season of Star Blazers (1979), the Argo escapes from a trap in Gamilon’s “sulfuric acid” ocean, as Desslok activates the Sulfuric Acid Storm Machine in an effort to melt the ship.

Facing missiles, acid, and other hazards, Deputy Captain Derek Wildstar takes Nova’s advice and seeks guidance from the bed-confined Captain Avatar. 

The good captain recommends total submersion of the Argo in the acid sea for ten minutes, so the ship can get a good shot (with the wave-motion gun) at the unstable volcanoes devastating Gamilon.  This could be the advantage the Star Force so desperately desires...




Wildstar accepts this risky recommendation, and even as Desslok orders the Argo “erased from the skies forever,” the great ship survives the final battle and devastates the planet Gamilon.  

One of Desslok’s panicked underlings notes that they “have been fighting a force” they “don’t understand" since the day the Argo left Earth.

After the fierce battle, Nova and Wildstar share a quiet moment atop the hull of the Argo, now twisted and nearly melted by the Gamilon oceans.  Nova expresses her fatigue with constant war and strife, and Derek assures her: "I think this was the last battle..."


Whether that observation is true or not remains to be seen, as two episodes of Star Blazers remain.  

Still, this episode makes a satisfying conclusion to the long-standing chess game between the Gamilons and the humans from Earth. For episode after episode, we've witnessed the Star Force defeating the plans of Gamilon underlings such as Lysis and Volgar.  

Here, Desslok himself is in charge, and there's no one else to blame for his failure.  During some moments of this episode, he seems to go mad at the prospect of defeat.  Oddly, there is not as much joy in seeing Desslok's defeat as one might expect.  We know now that Desslok is trying to save his own planet.  That knowledge adds a melancholy feeling to the episode.  Earth and its people may be saved, but Gamilon still, will die. 


Once Desslok and Gamilon are firmly in the rear-view mirror, Star Blazers features a great visual composition. Near the end of the episode, we witness the Argo rising triumphantly over the planetary curve of Gamilon.   Then, the planet recedes out of view as another planet appears directly ahead: Iscandar.  

The danger is passed, and the destination is in sight!

Only 161 days left!

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