Hello, Kyra here! This is Onamae wa? #11, our weekly encounter where we pick Anime character’s names and look for anything interesting in them.
Music can be used for many purposes but seeing it as a weapon is quite interesting. Be it school drama in Euphonium, world menacing threats in Symphogear or rising stars in IDOLM@STER, music is the weapon of choice to overcome hurdles. And of course there is a staple franchise, Macross. Spring 2016 marked my debut in this series and it has been a good experience so far.
Our main singer today is the marvelous 美雲(mi.kumo)・ギンヌメール(Guynemer) from Macross Delta, the latest anime of the renowned series. For the sake of this concert, it is recommended to have watched up to Episode 11 to avoid being infected by Spoiled Vars.
聞かせてあげる、女神の歌を！(kikaseteageru, megami no uta wo; translated by gg as Lend an ear to the song of a goddess!)
美雲(mi.kumo)・ギンヌメール(gin.nu.mee.ru; officially written as Guynemer) is the mysterious and beautiful lead vocalist of Walküre, the idol group who can neutralize Var infection through music. Mikumo is strict, especially when it comes to Freyja and prefers to work alone when possible. I’d say she has quite an air of stubbornness, albeit I’d be too if I were this perfect. I don’t remember when (or even if this was mentioned over the series), but apparently no one knows where she lives. Another interesting point is her high interest in the Heinz’s Song of the Wind. Let’s check her name out and see if we can find out more about our queen.
Family Name: ギンヌメール (Guynemer)
We start off with a non-Japanese name. Y-yey. Don’t worry, this one is quite good.
Guynemer (also recorded as Gummer, Gyimer, Guymer and others) is a medieval surname that probably is of pre 6th century Germanic origins. It derives from an ancient phrase win-mar, which can be roughly translated as celebrated friend. At the time, names like win-mar were seen as expressions of hope for the future, considering how chaotic was the sociopolitical situation during the period known as Dark Ages. One famous bearer of this name was
Frances Georges Guynemer (Credits to KumoKumo on the comments below!), one of the most famous french fighter aces of the First World War. Alright, let’s review this:
- Period of war ✓
- Hope for the future ✓
- Chaotic sociopolitical structure ✓
- Celebrated Friend ?
- RENOWNED FIGHTER ACE: X
I can’t believe we missed that last one! So close to a perfect score… if this series was about pilot idols who also sang while piloting, this would have been the best reference ever… BUT NOOOOO. Why even live? Anyway, we don’t know anything about Mikumo’s parents so this connection could still be a thing.
You might be asking, why not checking Celebrated Friend as well? Mikumo is beautiful, gorgeous and perfect. But we don’t know much about her. She is way too mysterious, way too interested into the Song of Wind… so, I don’t know. It could be a trap. In this sense, Celebrated Friend could actually be a ironical way to put it. As in Mikumo not being an actual friend, but because of her position as lead vocalist of Walküre, we are made to think that she is on our side. Once again, this is all conjecture. Love her either way!
As a last trivia, her Family name starts with Guy and ends with メール(which can be read as Male). I deeply apologize, my queen.
Given Name: 美雲 (mi.kumo)
A fitting name for a beautiful goddess. 美雲(mi.kumo) literally means Beautiful Cloud. But there is way more than that hidden in this word. Her pompous hairstyle resembles a cloud. It could also be a reference to her personality, beautiful from afar but otherwise hidden behind clouds of mystery. When you think this way, 美雲 really summarizes our lady here: Beauty and Mystery.
Another interesting finding is that 雲 is made by 雨(ame; rain) and 云, a kanji mainly featured in 云々(un.men; comment, criticism). So now we could understand 美雲 as a beautiful rain of criticism, which as we have seen over and over along the series, is a incredibly precise description of Mikumo.
The most common way to write Mikumo is 三雲(mi.kumo; lit. three clouds), although 美雲 isn’t really rare. There are some other ways to write it which could be quite interesting for our girl in case. Due to her mysterious behavior, the first word that came to mind was 蜘蛛(kumo; spider). When thinking about possible kanji for Mi to put together with 蜘蛛, I ran into the word 水蜘蛛(mizugumo; lit. water spider). This word could also be read as Migumo or Mikumo. This kind of spiders uses a bubble made of silk to dive into water. They literally isolate themselves into bubbles containing oxygen, which has a trivial link to our singer lone wolf tendency.
Other two relevant ways to write Mikumo is 美空萌(mi.ku.mo; lit. being infatuated with the beautiful sky) and 実久萌(mi.ku.mo; lit. being infatuated with the truth about an old story), both really interesting and appropriate to the overall theme of Macross Delta and Mikumo herself.
Let’s review our goddess:
美雲(mi.kumo)・ギンヌメール(Guynemer), the celebrated friend shrouded in beauty and mystery.
Thanks for your time, hope you guys enjoyed it. Mikumo is my favorite character in Macross Delta and might feature in my Top 5 Waifus of Spring 2016. See you all next weekend!
歌は神秘！(uta wa shinpi; Music is mystery!)