I’m not sure what this robot is, but I have never known a world without it

Lysander Chau has taken my breath away with this digital rendition of a Macross VF1J Max. I confess to not knowing a ton about the source material this robot hails from, but that doesn’t stop it from being an icon of my childhood. A confusing web of 1980s imports and copyright law put this robot (and others like him) everywhere back in the day – from the The Transformers toy line to knock-offs in Radio Shack and everywhere in-between.

LEGO Macross VF1J Max

Here’s what I do know: This piloted mech can transform from cool looking space-age robot into a modern-style fighter jet, and it can even form a sort of weird minotaur-like GERWALK mode. And Lysander has captured all that functionality and included all the various armor and jump jet add-ons that give the jet mode its distinctive look. And, really, when it looks this cool, does anything else matter?


5 comments on “I’m not sure what this robot is, but I have never known a world without it

  1. Alldarker

    Cool, Maximilian Jenius’s VF-1J Valkyrie. All it needs now is Millia Jenius’s red VF-1J, to make the husband and wife team complete!

  2. Joey Jouan

    This is a fantastic likeness! For those who don’t know, the source material is a series called Super Dimension Fortress Macross created by Studio Nue and brought to the US by Harmony Gold. To have enough episodes for syndication, two additional standalone Studio Nue series were combined under the name Robotech. Through licensing, the figure’s body was repainted as the Jetfire Transformer but only bears a passing resemblance to the animated character. In Japan, Macross, sans the other two series, received several sequels and a full-length animated feature. One even featured the pilot of this mech as captain of his own colonization fleet. But trademarks and licensing have prevented their US release until an agreement last year — Robotech grabbed my attention in 1983 for its complex characters and story but I will never forget the first commercial I saw. Jets resembling F-14 Tomcats flying to join combat with alien battlepods when one barrel rolls and SPROUTS LEGS! My twelve-year-old mind melted. Robotech introduced me but Macross made me stay.

  3. Ivan

    Robotech was the name of the cartoon that, in the 80’s, became an essential component of my daily watch list. That’s a veritech fighter, specifically piloted by Max (the only blue one). Max also had blue hair and glasses. He was a secondary character, but actually the best pilot of the series. There was also a red one, piloted by his green-haired spouse, who incidently was an alien.

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