Hibiki and Ishtar watch a news report about the battle at Culture Park, which is promoted as yet another victory for U.N. Spacy. After that, a commercial plays for the U.N. Spacy Moon Festival featuring idol singer Wendy Ryder. Ishtar wants to go to the festival, but Hibiki says that it’s just a military propaganda show. Ishtar says that she wants to learn about Earth’s music, and Hibiki figures he can do a report on the festival. However, before leaving he wants to know who exactly Ishtar is. She tells him that she needs to go to the Macross to find out and promises to tell him if he takes her there. Sylvie has dinner with Nexx at a fancy restaurant and can’t believe that U.N. Spacy is going to hold the Moon Festival during a war. Sylvie wants to stop the festival, but Nexx thinks that would cause a panic. She says hiding the truth won’t help, and Nexx says that U.N. Spacy is the symbol of Earth. If it appears that they can’t defend Earth the people will lose confidence in them and panic. A female fan approaches the table and asks them both for their autographs. Later, Nexx wants to take Sylvie for a ride, but she tells him she wants to be alone to think. As she drives along the highway she spots Hibiki and Ishtar and turns around to follow them. Hibiki and Ishtar arrive at the Macross, and he’s amazed that it’s still functional after so long. On the bridge, Ishtar touches Claudia LaSalle’s console, and suddenly all the computers activate. Ishtar loses balance, but Hibiki catches her. Ishtar then explains that she is a Mardook, not a Meltrandi. She tells him that the Meltrandi are an ancient race that wander space and destroy every culture they encounter. She says that as an Emulator she sings songs that force the Zentradi to fight and carry out the will of the Mardook. For all her life, music has only ever been uses for war. She believes that the Macross is the ship of the Alus, which is destined to lead the Mardook to peace. Sylvie listens to them from below and demands that Hibiki hand Ishtar over. Hibiki refuses and says that if he does that the public will never learn the truth. Sylvie says they are fighting a different enemy now, and Hibiki says that censoring the truth won’t end the war. He says he wants to show Ishtar the benefits of human culture, and Sylvie reluctantly lets them go. The next day, Hibiki and Ishtar board a shuttle and head for the Moon.
On the Moon, Sylvie and the Faerie Team begin the festival with a light show from their Valkyries. Nexx’s Valkyries fire their weapons and fly around destroying spotlights. Feff watches the Moon Festival on his ship and sends out scouts to see if Ishtar is connected to what’s happening. At the festival, the U.N. Spacy 12th Unit led by the flagship Gloria puts on a show of force by firing out into space. In the crowd, Hibiki and Ishtar watch as idol singer Wendy Ryder comes out and begins to sing “Only Your Friend.” At first, Ishtar’s head hurts from listening to Wendy’s song, but eventually she becomes accustomed to the song and begins to enjoy it. Feff watches Wendy’s performance and believes that she must be a human Emulator, so he orders his men to capture her. Once the song ends, Wendy climbs into the new non-transforming prototype fighter Metal Siren Replica, which Sylvie is piloting. Ishtar says that she wants to sing a love song like Wendy, and Hibiki asks her if she’ll sing for him one day. The Metal Siren takes off and flies over the Moon’s surface, but it quickly comes under attack by Zentradi Powered Suits. Sylvie engages in evasive maneuvers and dodges their attacks. Nexx launches and is told by Nexx that they can’t afford any embarrassments this time. Matsui calls Hibiki and asks why they lost their live feed of the festival. Hibiki explains that the Mardook are attacking the Metal Siren, and Matsui tells him to use their Civilian Valkyrie to go get the story. Wendy asks Sylvie to stop fooling around, and Sylvie explains they are being attacked by a real enemy and have no ammunition. Hibiki suits up for space flight, and Ishtar tells him she wants to come along. He refuses at first, but she says she thinks the attack is her fault. She wants to go back to Feff and tell him about Earth’s culture to that the war can end. Two Mardook suits grab onto the Metal Siren, but Nexx destroys them. Nexx and the Faerie Team fight the Mardook suits, and two more capture the Metal Siren again. Hibiki and Ishtar arrive in the SNN Valkyrie, and Ishtar offers to turn herself over to Feff if he lets Wendy go. Feff agrees, and Sylvie switches over to Nastasha’s Valkyrie. She chases after Hibiki and reaches Feff’s scout ship just before it performs a space fold.
After two episodes of teasing, the story finally takes us inside the Macross. Aside from being abandoned, it looks the same as it did in the original series. We learn why Ishtar is so interested in the ship- she believes it is a legendary ship that will bring peace to the destructive Mardook. Although Sylvie doesn’t want to hide the truth of the war, she wants to take Ishtar into custody. She must know that doing that will definitely hide the truth about the war. Things get more complicated when the Moon Festival begins and the Mardook attack. It’s amusing that Feff watches Wendy and wonders why as an Emulator her music isn’t motivating people to fight. Hibiki and Ishtar are captured and taken away, but Hibiki probably sees it as the scoop of a lifetime.
Original Review: May 1, 2000