I remember when I was just a kid my mother taught me a life lesson when she brought home some silkworms, which at first did nothing beside nibbling incessantly on some jagged-edge leaves for days until they wrapped themselves round and round in their white silk cocoons. A few days passed in absolute stillness. Then on one morning, one of the cocoon started to shake ever so slightly, which I caught the sight of and tried to help the struggling moth by peeling the cocoon that was entrapping it. Immediately, my mom reprimanded me, explaining that unless this moth was given the chance to break through the cocoon under its own strength, as its first act of commitment to life, it will not triumph over life’s many challenges ahead.
In similar ways, it is times like these that will give Sheryl the chance to reach deeper and realize strength that will surprise even herself. If you think her I am Sheryl Nome was ostentatious, wait til she breaks through this cocoon and spread her wings.
And I do not mean on a variable fighter’s wings. No, the opening theme has her singing, the closing theme has her singing, and given the kind of show Macross F is, Sheryl Nome will certainly be singing.
But let’s take a step back and meditate on this: even if she never recovers her fame, even if she never sings again, or even if she never recovers from her sickness, what will it mean for Sheryl? It’s a shame that we celebrate those who succeed but forget those who fail, while both good and bad fortunes befall us indiscriminately. I don’t know who first said this: it matters not how you fell, but it matters how you pick yourself back up, but these words are so true in defining what a character is. By the time Macross F ends, it will not be what she did when she was famous that I will remember her by, rather it will be what she did during these tribulations that I will recall who Sheryl Nome is.
Ranka, on the other hand, has consistently been the polar opposite of Sheryl in terms of fortune. When one girl is on top of the world, the other is at the bottom of the pit. But beside this opposing timing of fate, these two girls are strikingly similarly in terms of their stories: both are most likely specimens of some cruel experiments, both are orphans, both are manipulated by Grace.
The difference now is that Sheryl is cast aside by Grace, while Ranka is still deep in her clutch.
In this sense, what had just happened to Sheryl might have been a good thing for her since she is now free of the devil’s poison and can finally promote some real growth. So, believe it or not, dawn is rising for Sheryl.
Ranka, on the other hand, will see her gift turning around to become her bane, as Grace will push Ranka further into hell than she had with Sheryl. By now, there should be little doubt that, rather Ranka was a mere enhancement after birth or genetically engineered before, her violent reaction after the Vajra was wiped out highlighted that she is, in fact, a Vajra. The fold waves are her means to communicate with them like sound waves are for us human. She was not confusing them as the Macross F President had thought; she was summoning them, even if unknowingly.
A long nightmare lies ahead of Ranka.