Captain Mandarin is the meek subordinate to Commander Barratt, acting as his main second-in-command onboard the Stellar Federation battlecruiser Oshan Akuma. Mandarin's primary task is to assist Barratt with strategic planning, although she also commands fighter carriers and squadrons directly.
Mandarin doesn't employ any kind of tactics in battle, preferring to launch wave after wave of fighter attacks against enemy combatants. While this strategy does work against lesser enemies, it does have its weaknesses, as shown when Mandarin tries to use the same tactic against Jaws MacTaggart.
Despite being a major commanding officer onboard the Oshan Akuma, Mandarin doesn't have much of a say in what goes on: Commander Barratt is always there to dish out his own orders. Mandarin tends to spend most of her time carrying out these orders, and accepting the blame when things go wrong. Despite the abuse she constantly receives, she is desperately keen to win the approval of Barratt, even though he thinks of her as a coward and an imbecile.
Admittedly, Captain Mandarin's most prominent characteristic is her incompetence and complacency. She always goes along with Commander Barratt's schemes, even when it's obvious that they will fail, and it's this that helps to ensure that the Stellar Federation will never achieve the goal of Galactic dominance it longs for.
If Mandarin was in Barratt's position, her actions would be just as evil as his, if not more so. She has ambitions for promotion to a higher rank in the Military Police, by distinguishing herself in action. She is good with cold and mean strategy, but is timid as a person, and often makes errors at the last minute.
Physical Description Edit
Captain Mandarin is a red vixen who stands at about three feet five inches. She has blue eyes, and reddish-brown hair which she wears in a ponytail. She also sports a number of facial markings, including a prominent raccoon mask. She is well built in the chest, but sadly not enough to prevent her from becoming the subject of derision from her peers.
In comparison to her fellow officers, Captain Mandarin dresses rather casually: the only standard issue item of clothing she wears is her brown infantry jacket, and even then, she bought this herself. Other items of clothing include a pair of skinny jeans, and a grey t-shirt bearing the legend, I was' the Space Gypsy's double!'. Mandarin herself has refused to pass comment on the context behind this shirt.
The most prominent physical aspect of Mandarin is the eyepatch she wears over her right eye. She wears it on the pretence that it covers up a scar she received during a fighter battle, but in fact all that's there is a light mark across her mask that she's rather embarrassed by.
Captain Mandarin was born Joanna Edison Mandarin on May 4th 2985. She was born and raised in the large town of Fulchester, in the Tyneside region of Great Britain, on Earth, and grew up in a area of relative poverty.
From an early age, Mandarin was rebellious and troublesome, constantly stirring up trouble in school, and getting into fights at home. Both her parents and her teachers were convinced that Mandarin had no direction in life, and that her troublemaking could only be stopped if she found her particular direction.
What nobody realized at the time is that Mandarin had already found her direction: she had aspirations of a career out in the stars, but at the time she didn't consider the Military as an option. She continued to cause trouble during her teenage years, and things came to a head when, in a bid to straighten her out, her parents enlisted her into the local subdivision of the Military Police. Even though they'd done so without her knowledge or consent, Mandarin didn't protest against the idea: without realizing it, they'd played into her ambitions for life beyond Earth.
Mandarin entered the training school in late 3002. However, she was practically rushed through her training, as the outbreak of the Fourth Galactic War had created a surge of demand for new officers. Mandarin was hurriedly commissioned as an officer, and posted as a Midshipwoman onboard the HMS Chiselton, a replenishment fleet tanker.
By the time Mandarin had been promoted to the rank of Sub-Lieutenant in early 3004, she'd undergone something of a change in her personality. Gone was the troublesome, rebellious teenager from Fulchester, and in its place came the meek, ineffectual commanding officer. This transformation was to be completed when Mandarin was transferred to the battlecruiser Oshan Akuma in 3006, when she met Commander Barratt for the first time.
Under Barratt, Mandarin-now a Lieutenant-Commander-was able to harden up considerably, but by no means was she any more competent. Luckily for her, she rarely suffered the full brunt of the blow from Barratt, for she was not his primary subordinate at the time. That dubious distinction belonged to Captain Gwydir, a slightly older Welsh officer.
During this time, Mandarin also participated in Commander Barratt's fruitless battle against Captain Jaws MacTaggart, though she had her own reasons for fighting this space pirate. For one thing, their constant failure to destroy her had led to the sudden execution of many of Mandarin's fellow officers, and she did not want to be the next in line. For another, the freedom she represented was a kick in the teeth for the oppressed Mandarin, and she was determined to destroy her, and end this rubbing in of her past life.
Mandarin was promoted to her signature rank of Captain in mid-3009, and it's shortly after this that the most documented portion of her career begins. After yet another failed attack against Jaws, Captain Gwydir found himself being executed on the spot by Commander Barratt, who promptly summoned Mandarin to take his place.
As we have seen so far, however, Mandarin is not that much better than Gwydir, but it still remains to be seen whether this will turn out to be her downfall or not. However, given that it's now been nearly a year since Captain Mandarin started regularly working with Commander Barratt, it's likely that she will remain in her position of authority for a long time to come, making the same mistakes and taking t he same punishments from Barratt.
- Her place of birth (the North East of England) is, at least to producer Jordann Edwards, an indirect shout-out to his friend Mark Appleyard, also known as BluebottleFlyer, who is from Durham. However, the specific town, Fulchester, is fictional, being the primary setting for the British comic magazine Viz.
- Creator Craig Black has admitted that, if the series was to become animated, he'd really like to see Sophie Aldred, of Doctor Who fame, as the voice of Mandarin.