What's Past is Prelude Again: Examining the Shadow Chronicles Comic Preview (Part 3)

Folks, digging through comics and scanning stuff and clipping it out JUST right takes time, and I've got work in the morning, so this one might get cut a little early. I hope you understand. Feels nice to be flexing these muscles again, but on the other hand, I'm starting to remember why I put all my Robotech-related projects on the backburner ...

The first three panels of page two give us a good look at our two heroes in Haydonite armor. One of them is obviously the newly redesigned Dr. Jean Grant. I've provided a Tommy Yune piece of her in her Shadow Chronicles garb that appeared in the Robotech 20th Anniversary/Robocon 20 promotional folder for comparision. But as for the fellow with her ... well, as you can see, it's got to be Rick Hunter. One continuity tidbit I've been assured hasn't been screwed up is that anyone who appears in one of those Haydonite armors is someone who recieved one of those armor discs on Haydon IV in the Waltrips' Sentinels comics. We never see Jean recieve one, but then again we never see Max and Miriya recieve them either, but when they walk up to Rick and Lisa to tell them that they're not coming along to Spheris, they are wearing the discs on their standard Expeditionary Force uniforms. Those leaving for Tirol (Breetai, Vince, Jonathan Wolff -- remember, they left to stand trial) didn't recieve them, but those staying behind apparently did. Jean Grant also stayed behind, so she's fine here. But if we see Vince suited up ...

At the same time, Rick Hunter is the only character out of those who recieved a Haydonite armor disc who has the right hair color, age, build, etc. to be this other armor-clad person we see here. And look at the screen grab from the Macross animation as compared to the image of this guy from the next page over. Who else has hair that does that, seriously? So yes, this strong-chinned fellow who looks to be in his thirties or so appears to be Rick Hunter. He certainly looks more like Rick Hunter than the guy who appeared in the framing sequence in WildStorm's Robotech #0 ...

And hey, is it just me, or do those Haydonite armors look really silly outside of the streamlined world of the Waltrips' Sentinels comics? Super anime hero Rick from the cover of Sentinels Book IV #10 looks pretty slick, but "big chin dude" Rick on panel #2 looks totally out of place in that outfit.

This also brings to the fore the issue of the man identified as Rick Hunter on the cover of Prelude #4 (see below). This Rick has extremely light brown hair. The other two Rick Hunters I've presented here, TV series and Waltrip Sentinels, have black hair. The Rick Hunter on the cover of Prelude #4 has light gray hair. (He also has it spiking out at the bottom again, which means yeah, it's probably him.) So again, deliberate misdirection, coloring mistake, or are we looking at a five-issue mini-series that takes place over five-to-ten years? I guess only time will tell.

With these two characters positively identified, we now turn to the issue of, should these people be here?

Behold the Ark Angel, a Haydonite starship gifted to the Sentinels at the same time as the armor discs. As I've scrawled across the bottom of this image, this is from the first page of the next to last issue of the Sentinels comic book series. The Ark Angel is in orbit around the planet Spheris, the next to last planet that the Sentinels have to liberate in order to have fully spread freedom throughout the Local Group. They really don't get much farther than this in their quest -- they begin a skirmish on the surface of the planet that leads to a cliffhanger at the end of Sentinels Book IV #13. The main reason for this is that these last two issues are strongly focused on the political goings-on back on Tirol, as well as the violent aftermath.

Based on the fact that Rick gets to sit in the "Kirk chair" on the bridge of the Ark Angel, he's probably the Admiral Hunter being talked to in this panel. In any case, though, this is where he is when Edwards makes his escape, kills Kyle, grabs Minmei, and takes off. (More on where he went tomorrow.) Now, the Ark Angel is equipped with a proper fold system, so Rick could speed back to Tirol if need be, but considering the fact that he's starting a campaign here and he still hasn't found out how the trial went -- remember, it just blew up in everyone's faces -- that just doesn't sound right.

Even worse is the situation with Jean. As I noted, Jean stayed behind on Haydon IV after the liberation of that world. She stayed there to help Miriya through her childbirth; Max and Miriya are having their second daughter soon, the one Dana connects with psychically in the last episode of Robotech Masters. Since this hasn't happened yet in the Waltrips' Sentinels comics, that's where Jean should still be. But no, she's right here at Rick's side looking over a dead man. This has bugged me ever since I saw some early rough work on Tommy Yune's Powerbook out at Anime Expo, and continues to bug me in ways I'll explain in further detail when an issue or two of the series is in my hands.

As an aside, that dead man's uniform needs some more color. I've never seen a Sentinels era Expeditionary Force uniform with that much white. Obviously somoene failed to give the colorist a proper reference, which is a bit of a shame, given how totally spot-on the Haydonite armor designs are color-wise.

I really need to sleep now, so Cyclones & T.R. Edwards will have to wait until tomorrow night. Let me know if you think I've missed something -- I've kind of rushed through this, since this is the second time I've typed all this (and I'm sure you can guess why by my irritated tone). Sooooo, more later. Ciao.


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