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Queen Emeraldas has got herself into a war by fighting a race that wishes to conquer everything in the universe. While fighting this enemy she is tormented by the memory of her lost love.
In the distant future, the Afressians are out to dominate the galaxy, and humankind's only hope for freedom is the pirate known as Queen Emeraldas. Driven by the memory of a long-lost love, she sails the seas of space in her namesake ship, fighting evil on her own terms-more like Robin Hood than a traditional pirate. She is fiercely determined to protect the "good name" of her vocation, and when an Afressian crew flies the Skull and Crossbones she insists they cease, employing her usual forceful arguments when reason fails. In a remote corner of space she meets a young man who has no faith in humanity and a group of ordinary folk who do their best to revive that faith. When the Afressians under Captain Eldomain come looking for revenge, they take these ordinary folk hostage as bait for a trap for Emeraldas.
Leiji Matsumoto has spent most of his career constructing a huge personal universe in which to develop his notions of honor, justice, courage, and what it means to be a real human being. At the center are his two most glorious creations, the heroic pirate-knight Captain Harlock and his friend and ally Emeraldas. Around them revolve a huge cast of friends and foes, people who define their own place in the universe by their responses to its trials and hardships. The video series shows us a young boy with a hard, sad past setting out to make a hard, sad future for himself, until pirate queen Emeraldas and an unlikely crew of galactic deadbeats show him that an open heart is as vital as courage.
Emeraldas is the active facet of Matsu-moto's ideal woman, most fully embodied in Maetel of Galaxy Express 999. In a sense, every Matsumoto story is the same story, and so the viewer always knows what to expect and is drawn into Matsumoto's world without any protest or difficulty. An enticing introduction to Matsumoto's old values and never-changing style, combined here with up-to-the-minute animation techniques. Though limited in places, the animation itself is stylish, and while the computer graphics vary in quality, they don't impede the flow of the story.
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