[6] -martian successor nadesico: time-

Time traveling with anime! Or, perhaps it’s actually remembering love…

Martian Successor Nadesico

This post is the seventh of my entries into 2016’s rendition of the 12 Days of Anime aniblogger project. For more about the project, read appropriant’s introductory post. For a spreadsheet containing the work of all the bloggers participating, go here. For my previous 12 Days posts, go here.

I spent a fair bit of my anime-watching time during the last year making an effort to watch more older shows. Aside from the fact that keeping up with airing anime can be a rather tiring affair, I also think it’s rather important that, as an anime fan, I make an effort to engage a bit with the stuff that makes up the history of this little industry I like so much. Knowing my own tastes are rather omnivorous and easily accepting of new things (“it’s always better to have more love”), it’s more about just making sure I give older anime a chance—because I’m bound to find something I’ll like.

One of those older shows I watched was Martian Successor Nadesico, and in thinking about it as a show and what it means, it strikes me as a rather appropriate representative for an older generation of anime because of how much it is itself a sort of musing on time. After all, Nadesico is filled with homages to shows past (and, in some ways, future), some of which I recognized and many others I didn’t. And while I think the show stands really well on its own terms, it’s also neat to consider how in the act of remembering its predecessors Nadesico and I find ourselves busied about a common goal.

Martian Successor Nadesico

We’re oft inclined to think of time as some kind of grand expanse, and indeed it is, but the segment of it that we experience ourselves is but a tiny fraction of it. A small thing. An anime within that, even smaller. A single anime’s fond remembrances of its ancestors? Not even a blip on the wide map of time. And yet that insubstantial half-gasp is something valuable despite its temporality. I’m not given to any sentiment so frivolous as “if you remember me, I’ll always be with you!” but these spots of existence mark out our lives in ways that only creatures as temporal as human beings can understand.

I got too fancy with my language.

All I really mean to say is that Martian Successor Nadesico is engaged in the self-indulgent activity of remember the small snippets of time that are the shows it references, parodies, and lovingly follows. I hesitate to call it a foolish or meaningless act, and yet it many ways it is. The only value it contains is that which comes inherently with the simplicity of fondness and love for something. It is ultimately a very small thing to throw a Macross reference into the middle of a discussion between bureaucrats, and yet that little act speaks of volumes of love. So it is with the motivations that compelled me to reach back and experience Nadesico. I only wanted to know a bit more, to see a bit more, to understand a bit more. And through the show’s little recollections of those things it loved, I came to love them a little more too. Across time. It was the passage of time that made this possible.

7 thoughts on “[6] -martian successor nadesico: time-

  1. Well said. I would only add that in my opinion, Nadesico probably has the best opening song in anime history, and it would have to be counted as among one of the handful of “most clever” anime ever made. It’s the kind of rare show that will still be relevant and watchable 100 years from now.


    • Indeed, I know for a fact that Nadesico, influenced by the shows that came before it, later influenced shows that came after it. Generationality in anime is fascinating.


  2. I’ve just finished watching Nadesico, and it was great (your personal excitement for the show made me want to watch this show in the first place, so thanks!)

    I haven’t watched that much anime, neither those to which it paid homage nor the ones it influenced. But I think that’s the one of the reasons I got to enjoy it for the things it did and wanted to portray apart from all these funny parodies (which I know I’ll enjoy once I watch more anime).

    A particular theme I really like was its love for memories and the time we spend with others, and how it was so related to Ruri’s personal arc (my favorite character, btw). It’s something that really speaks to me, mostly because I enjoy the time I spend with the people I love, and know how precious those memories are. That’s also a reason why I really, really liked the ending.

    And also thanks to Nadesico, now I really want to experience that old anime it seems to love I’m preparing myself to watch some original Macross and some Gundam, and I’m pretty sure I’ll enjoy them a lot.

    This was a nice little piece, Bless!


    • Aww man, this might be my favorite comment I’ve ever gotten on a blog post.

      I’d probably seen a few more of the shows that inspired and were inspired by Nadesico than you have when I watched it, but like you I felt I missed a lot of the references—and thus was primarily able to enjoy it on its own terms. But even if you don’t know the references, you still can feel the affection it has for them, which it seems like you picked up as you were watched.

      Neat thoughts on the shows themes, too, which kind sync up with mine! Ruri is great. ^_^

      Anyways, I’m really glad you decided to give it a shot and enjoyed it! The original Macross is one of my favorite shows as well, so I hope you like it!

      Liked by 1 person

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