It has been a week since GMA7 unleashed its most recent trailer for its live-action adaptation of the 1970’s super robot anime series “Voltes V.” It was much needed assurance after the very first teaser in the New Year transition to 2020, before the COVID pandemic put many things to a halt. The second preview, while pooh-poohed by some Filipinos disappointed in how some SFX-laden action series produced by GMA were reduced to Philippine soap-opera drama style, was conversely positively received by Japanese commenting on social media. Now, the biggest Japanese fan yet has praised the trailer: the original singer of the theme song herself.
As The Manila Bulletin tells it, anime fans on Twitter, particularly Filipino fans of “Voltes V,” are now reacting to an effusive post by Japanese singer Mitsuko Horie regarding “Voltes V Legacy,” the heavily-anticipated live-action remake on the classic mecha anime coming soon to the Kapuso network. Horie performed the opening theme, “Voltes V no Uta” (literally “Song of Voltes V”) in 1977. But in the Philippines the song with its trumpets and distinctive 70s Japanese pop style remained timeless, getting repeat performances from marching bands and TV comedy shows.
Horie’s tweet, dated January 19, roughly translates thus: “It seems that the popular Voltes V is still evolving in the Philippines! It is amazing! Watching it makes you want to sing! And above all, I am glad that everyone in the Philippines loves and loves me!” The artist, now aged 63, had already once visited the Philippines in 2018 as the special guest performer for a “Voltes V” themed charity run, where of course she sang the theme song with her familiar, seemingly unchanging voice.
Mitsuko Horie may have a solid anime background as a theme song performer and even voice actress (Sailor Galaxia in “Sailor Moon: Sailor Stars” and the main character in “Remi: Nobody’s Girl,” both airing 1996), but to Filipinos she is the singer for “Voltes V,” no more and no less.
“Voltes V Legacy” is spearheaded by GMA7’s best creative minds, from director Mark Reyes to Head Writer Suzette Doctolero, the latter of whom has defended the show from predictions that it will be bogged down by drama tropes such as love triangles and third parties. Original anime producer Toei Animation has oversight over the series, believed to be airing only weekly instead of Monday to Friday. There is no official word yet on the character casting, or when in 2021 “Voltes V Legacy” will premiere.Image courtesy of JPopAsia