What is 'ROBOTECH Defenders' and is it Related to the ROBOTECH TV Series?
The name 'ROBOTECH Defenders' mainly refers to an Revell model military sci-fi mecha/vehicle kit series of the 1980's that was also paired with an attempt to create more fans with a limited DC Comics series by the same name that developed a story aspect ..which flopped. When it comes to relationship to the Harmony Gold ROBOTECH TV series...that greatly depends on the time frame. For a brief time, around 1985, the Revell model kit line and the TV series were in conflict. However, this was quickly settled by Harmony Gold with a co-licensing agreement. Some believe that in order for Harmony Gold to seal the deal with Matchbox Toys, the issue with Revell's line of ROBOTECH Defenders had to be settled.
The Confusing History of the ROBOTECH Defenders
During the period of 1984-1985, the original FASA Battletech RPG, and Harmony Gold's ROBOTECH TV series, Revell's ROBOTECH Defenders and several other American model kit lines were all dipping from the same pool of plastic Japanese models!
The Model Kits of the ROBOTECH Defenders
When these new war machines go after the Grelon warship...and get their metal ass kicked and captured. But, using the magical red button, the pilots released the consciences of the mecha to fight back. Much like the old Robotix toy storyline, the conciseness of the mecha creators are transferred into their machines. The sentient mecha tell their biological pilots that they are actually at war with another older race called the S'Landrai, who feed off of the living energy of other races, and now they are awake and using the Grelon has a proxy force to weaken this solar system for a culling...maybe this is where Stargate: Atlantis got the idea for the Wrath? These sentient tin-cans were just waiting for the right time for the S'Landrai to make their move, and the time is now.
What Happened to the ROBOTECH Defenders?
Given the comic's rushed story-line and poor quality 'flex-o-graphic' art failed to impress buyers, causing the three-part series to be cut to two when sales were extremely low. Originally, the comic series was to testing of the waters for a continued endeavor between DC and Revell...but, it died right there, causing the 'story' portion of the ROBOTECH Defenders to never go beyond those two 1985 comics. However, the model kits were fairly successful, and Revell continued to push new kits onto the American market until the late 1980's. However, like all things, the giant robot crazy of the 1980's died out, and so did Revell's Japanese imported kits. Due to the limited time frame and the niche market it was aimed, ROBOTECH Defenders is one of those products that was of it's time. Some of the unopened model kits are sold on eBay, including the rare and highly cool 'Robotech Factory'. Today, the ROBOTECH Defenders exists only as a footnot on various hobby/mecha/ROBOTECH wiki and informational websites.
My Memories of the ROBOTECH Defenders
Read the original 1985 comic book...if you dare!
Here is the list of the vintage Arii Macross Model Kits