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Elsa, Catty, Rabby, Pony, Patty, and Rumy are the crew of the Starleaf, a spaceship in the Solnoid Navy, at war with the alien Paranoids. Unknown to any but the highest-ranking officers, the Solnoid leaders have decided that the two species must unite to preserve the best qualities of both-the Solnoids are all female clones, so their gene-pool is self-limiting (compare to Vandread). Fighter pilot Lufy joins the Starleaf when her ship crashes onto the flight deck. Though she is a hostile, hot-tempered loner, the real source of danger is elsewhere. When Patty is injured in an encounter with the enemy, her "injury" is revealed as an accelerated pregnancy. She is about to become mother to a new race, providing they survive long enough to get her and her child to safety.
Based on a series of model features in Model Graphix magazine and illustrated with photos of the plastic cuties that inspired the characters, the original story for GF was accompanied by a manga from Hideki Kakinuma. Replaying both the sci-fi horror of Alien and its use of conspiratorial androids (Catty), the U.S. movie audience had Sigourney Weaver in a role written for a man, but the Japanese had an all-female crew whose heroism was counterbalanced by dollops of fluffiness. Gunsmith Cats-creator Sonoda's designs for GF would establish him as a fan favorite. Subsequent parts of the saga were released on video, starting with GFII: Destruction (1987). Years after the violent conclusion of the movie, Lufy is found floating in space by the crew of the Solnoid ship Lorelei-as in Aliens. Most of the crew are androids, and one is identical to Catty. Lufy learns that the original Catty is the prime mover of the plan to interbreed the species, and her rescuers are en route to see if the plan is working. On Terra, Patty's half-Solnoid, half-Paranoid child and his mate, Starleaf-survivor Rumy, are starting a new race, but the war is still raging, and not everyone wants the plan to succeed. By GFIII: Stardust War (1988), the last remnants of both armies are still determined to annihilate each other and thwart the Unification Plan. A new GF team is set up, with another android Catty joining Lufy and some old friends to try and avert the final conflict. The plots were stuck in a rut by this time, but the theme of heroically cute young women fighting military boneheadedness and political machinations still had mileage in it.
Rhea Gall Force (1989) moves the action aeons into the future, when Patty's descendants have repopulated the ruined wasteland of Earth. On Earth's moon, an ancient crashed Paranoid spacecraft has "bred" cybernetic MMEs (Man-Made Existences). These cybernetic creatures turn on their creators and, à la Terminator, force a nuclear war. The only hope is to evacuate the survivors to Mars, regroup, and plan the repopulating of Earth. A small group led by Sandy Newman and her best friend Melodi resolves to save Earth's population. Though conceived as the first of a four-part series, the "Rhea" prefix was a victim of the same acrimonious split between the producers that plagued Bubblegum Crisis. Consequently, episodes 2-4 were released under a new title, renumbered 1-3 as the GF: Earth Chapter (1989) videos. The war machines led by computer entity Gorn, who wants to eliminate humankind, are opposed by Sandy and her comrades, while Catty is still pulling all the strings behind the scenes. Once again, two different species must come together if the best of both is to survive, and once again military forces are conspiring to annihilate everything in a vain quest for victory. Later episodes of the franchise hint further at the series' cleverest conceit-it is implied that the narrative is completely cyclical (a true "eternal story"), with look-alikes of the original cast continually reappearing, and Catty living through the entire process. Asides in the original reveal that the Solnoids' homeworld was planet "Marsus," whence they had fled to avoid a catastrophe on their real homeworld-the similarity to Earth Chapter's "Mars" likely to be more than mere coincidence. By GF New Era (1991), the action moves to 2291, when the humans live in peace on Earth with the machine entities now called Yuman, but Yuman leader Gorn is not convinced it's over and plans a preemptive strike. Android Catty, still planning for survival, selects six young women for a dangerous mission. Catty still has a few secrets in store-she's been around the human race for longer than anyone knows and has always worked to prevent its extinction. But if this last remnant of humanity is wiped out, the galaxy will be left to the machines.
A final lackluster outing came in the form of Gall Force: Revolution (1996), a flashback to the time of the original Gall Force, with the crew (now played by different actresses) caught in the crossfire between the East and West Solnoids. However, it could be argued that this final chapter is not an inexact remake, but instead the beginning of another cycle-compare to the similarly mind-bending continuity of Uro-tsukidoji. See also Super-Deformed Double Feature. LNV