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The Gundam |OT| Destiny is something we all have to deal with

Oct 25, 2017
15,813
MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM:

FIRST AIRING: 1979

OVERVIEW: The granddaddy of them all, the godfather of "real robot" and the Japanese Star Wars. Everything about the series you love, and most of what you hate, originates here. Radar being useless, nuclear powered walking death mobiles with knockoff light sabers, knockoff jedi in the Newtypes, kids who think the adults are ruining everything, rebellious Space Nazis getting the upper hand on the New World Order World Government that has its own problems before some plucky young kids hop aboard the latest and greatest space carrier with a newly commissioned officer getting a field promotion, struggling to get to safety while being pursued by said space nazis with their only hope being a nerdy teenager who jumped in the giant robot named Gundam and reads the manual as he goes along. The show is so successful that some of its sequels follow this example note for note only slightly changing some of the experiences around.

BRIGHT SPOT: Bright Noa. Oh, you'd think I'd give it to Char, whose popularity led to the softing of the space nazis in future shows and is easily the coolest person in UC Gundam, but no. Bright Noa, namely so I could name this bit after him. That and he is the glue that holds the UC together, appearing in the first three series, the most important movie (even though it sucks) and more recently in Gundam Unicorn. That's more than Amuro and Char combined, both of which missed ZZ entirely and were dead in Unicorn. His real star turn isn't until ZZ arguably, but his signature bright slap is another staple of the series.

SHOULD YOU WATCH IT: Maybe. I really like it and as a piece of anime history it's something that you should watch for no other reason than the exhaustive impact it has on the history of anime. The only show more influential than it is Dragon Ball. Story wise it's got a lot of villain of the week but the tone is just so different than a lot of other shows of the era.

WOULD I HANG OUT WITH THE MAIN CHARACTER?: Amuro Ray is a neeeeeerd. He's also a bit whiny, but give him a break, his life got turned upside down by this whole nonsense and he's got the lives of the entire ship in his hand. So yes, I would hang out with Amuro Ray.

THE RANKING:

Mobile Suit Gundam
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,668
i've been reading youtube comments on Char's turning from Zeta to CCA. the comments suggested that Camile turning into jello was the straw that broke the camel's back so he went aggressive in CCA.

it's still so jarring.
 

xEik

The Fallen
Nov 17, 2017
2,630
The Catalan Republic
i've been reading youtube comments on Char's turning from Zeta to CCA. the comments suggested that Camile turning into jello was the straw that broke the camel's back so he went aggressive in CCA.

it's still so jarring.
Rationalization. Char was always a despicable person. A very charismatic one but despicable nonetheless. Zeta simply happens to be a situation where all stars aligned so his characteristics made him a person you want to side with. But he is generally someone you'd easily give the side-eye.
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,668
Rationalization. Char was always a despicable person. A very charismatic one but despicable nonetheless. Zeta simply happens to be a situation where all stars aligned so his characteristics made him a person you want to side with. But he is generally someone you'd easily give the side-eye.
Zeta was my first exposure to Char. Watching that series alone, i thought Char was noble. His Dakar speech was so inspiring. Then i saw CCA after ZZ and was shocked.

i have yet to watch the original series. That may give me a better understanding of his despicable nature.
 

xEik

The Fallen
Nov 17, 2017
2,630
The Catalan Republic
Zeta was my first exposure to Char. Watching that series alone, i thought Char was noble. His Dakar speech was so inspiring. Then i saw CCA after ZZ and was shocked.

i have yet to watch the original series. That may give me a better understanding of his despicable nature.
I watched the UC Gundam series in production order and I was still shocked by CCA. MSG Char isn't exactly bad although it gives some hints. He is almost but not quite a frenemy (mostly because of his relationship with Sayla).
The problem is that one is led to think going from MSG to Zeta that he is on a positive progression but he isn't.
Watching The Origin only cements his worst traits and make you doubt if his high points in Zeta were merely circumstantial.
 
Oct 25, 2017
15,286
Rationalization. Char was always a despicable person. A very charismatic one but despicable nonetheless. Zeta simply happens to be a situation where all stars aligned so his characteristics made him a person you want to side with. But he is generally someone you'd easily give the side-eye.
Char is shit, but he's not exactly Jamitov Hymen or Bask Ohm tier till CCA. That's pretty much the best thing going for him. At best he's like the inverse of Paptimus.
 

xEik

The Fallen
Nov 17, 2017
2,630
The Catalan Republic
Char is shit, but he's not exactly Jamitov Hymen or Bask Ohm tier till CCA. That's pretty much the best thing going for him. At best he's like the inverse of Paptimus.
There's a category reserved for the most vile people in Gundam where you can only enter after committing genocide and similar war crimes typically involving civilians who want to have no involvement with all the warmongering.
Ghiren belongs in there as do Bask Om and Jamitov. As you point out, Char doesn't enter the club until CCA.
A person can still be a bad person even if they are never given the opportunity to commit crimes against humanity.
 
Oct 25, 2017
15,286
There's a category reserved for the most vile people in Gundam where you can only enter after committing genocide and similar war crimes typically involving civilians who want to have no involvement with all the warmongering.
Ghiren belongs in there as do Bask Om and Jamitov. As you point out, Char doesn't enter the club until CCA.
A person can still be a bad person even if they are never given the opportunity to commit crimes against humanity.
I wonder if Fonz Katajie is in that warmongering tier. His Angel's Halo plan was fucking crazy.
 

xEik

The Fallen
Nov 17, 2017
2,630
The Catalan Republic
I wonder if Fonz Katajie is in that warmongering tier. His Angel's Halo plan was fucking crazy.
In my opinion, yes he is. Taking agency away from all the inhabitants of Earth is in no way acceptable.
Incidentally one of the blandest persons to be in the category would be Ronan Marcenas, who is willing to potentially destroy Industrial 7 completely just to cover their collusion. And then the asshole is devastated when it is revealed that he will probably kill his own son in the process.
 
Oct 25, 2017
15,286
In my opinion, yes he is. Taking agency away from all the inhabitants of Earth is in no way acceptable.
Incidentally one of the blandest persons to be in the category would be Ronan Marcenas, who is willing to potentially destroy Industrial 7 completely just to cover their collusion. And then the asshole is devastated when it is revealed that he will probably kill his own son in the process.
Yeah I can see Ronan being in that category, he's just as you say "bland." His plan has no spice to it. At least the evil people in Gundam are legit evil to the point where you really can not side with them.
 
Nov 15, 2017
660
My opinion so far of Char (or rather Casval to be accurate) in particular only comes from having so far watched The Origin, MSG, MSG:Z, and MSG:ZZ.

To me he borders on a type of extremely psychotic personality, although he does have empathy for those he cares about and for those he fights against in war.

* Casval knowingly sets in motion the events that led the death of the real Char Aznable, his real life doppleganger. Even if he didn't really know Char would die, he had to have known that would have been an outcome as the Zabi's were trying to assassinate him and any survivors of Deikun's line of succession
* To top this off he pretends to be "Char" without the real Char's parents even knowing their son was in fact dead and continues to do so for the rest of his life
* His absolute devotion to revenge, even if it takes careful plotting for a years or a decade to kill off the Zabi family like building up a fake friendship with Garma then letting him die or pretending to go along with the Zabi Zeon's ideals throughout the conflict in MSG. And Garma's sin? Simply being born a Zabi.
* Garma's death leads to Rambal Ral going on a quest for revenge that ultimately gets him killed for nothing - the death of Rambal Ral absolutely shows how absolutely pointless and tragic the war was. Rambal Ral, after all, was the a long time friend of Casval's father and helped protect both Casval and Sayla (Artesia) from assassination.
 
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Oct 25, 2017
15,286
My opinion so far of Char (or rather Casval to be accurate) in particular only comes from having so far watched The Origin, MSG, MSG:Z, and MSG:ZZ.

To me he borders on a type of extremely psychotic personality, although he does have empathy for those he cares about and for those he fights against in war.

* Casval knowingly sets in motion the events that led the death of the real Char Aznable, his real life doppleganger. Even if he didn't really know Char would die, he had to have known that would have been an outcome as the Zabi's were trying to assassinate him and any survivors of Deikun's line of succession
* To top this off he pretends to be "Char" without the real Char's parents even knowing their son was in fact dead and continues to do so for the rest of his life
* His absolute devotion to revenge, even if it takes careful plotting for a years or a decade to kill off the Zabi family like building up a fake friendship with Garma then letting him die or pretending to go along with the Zabi Zeon's ideals throughout the conflict in MSG
* Garma's death leads to Rambal Ral going on a quest for revenge that ultimately gets him killed for nothing - the death of Rambal Ral absolutely shows how absolutely pointless and tragic the war was. Rambal Ral, after all, was the a long time friend of Casval's father and helped protect both Casval and Sayla from assassination.
Char is all about that long con douchebaggery.
 
Oct 25, 2017
15,813
MOBILE SUIT ZETA GUNDAM:

FIRST AIRING: March 1985

OVERVIEW: Mobile Suit Gundam was an overnight success but it took them about five years to get a follow up done. It had to be the right show to satisfy all demands. It needed a lot of mobile suits for Bandai to sell. It needed to be the Empire Strikes Back to MSG's Star Wars, and it basically is. This was a huge budget TV anime for the mid 80's. The show looks gorgeous compared to everything else that didn't have a movie budget. Tonally it is also a lot like Empire; After winning the one year war the Earth Federation started cracking down on the colonies and the new types that helped them win said war, and after a major terrorist attack that left the planet in an even more precarious situation they bring forth a group called the Titans, who make the Space Nazis look like kindergarten bullies in comparison. Members of the federal forces who are appalled by this jackboot behavior form a rebellion called the Anti Earth Union Group. Kamille, a teenager who is sick of the titans and knows of their development of a new mobile suit decides to jack the thing and punch some Titan scum right in the face, joining Bright Noa's ship in the rebellion. The Titans will stop at nothing; this isn't even a cliche phrase here, the Titans are the worst monsters in the entire franchise gassing civilian colonies to make a point, killing hostages for fun, turning people into newtype slaves, doing everything possible to maintain their power and oppress the people of space. Also in the AEUG is Char wearing glasses with the worst nickname ever. The rest of the MSG crew either make cameos or outright join...but no one is safe on the Argama; main characters die all the time. The war gets even weirder when the Zeonic remnant shows up from the outer solar system to make this a three way conflict. A dark space opera.

BRIGHT SPOT: Emma Sheen. She starts the series as one of the newest recruits to the Titans. When presented with the evidence of their heinous crimes against humanity she instantly joins the AEUG. This immediately puts her in the upper echelon of Gundam characters in that when she was presented with the atrocities of her horrible group she actually does something about it. Jerid is cool with all the murder, so are many other future Gundam antagonists where their short sighted goals or personal honor or whatever mean more than mass murder.

SHOULD YOU WATCH IT: Another strong maybe. It's very well put together with the only real gripes being the enemy of the week to sell more toys nature of the show and Reccoa's awful heel turn which might be the worst moment in UC history. You get to see Kamille get his ass beat. You get to see gorgeous mid 80's anime. You get to play Russian roulette with the side characters to see who dies next. You get to suffer.

WOULD I HANG OUT WITH THE MAIN CHARACTER?: Emphatic yes. Kamille is misunderstood. He's really not that whiny, especially not by Gundam protagonist standards. Same with his rebellious streak; I mean he joined a rebellion. His corporal punishment is as much on the stress relief of his shitty higher ups than any real gaffe he makes. He saw what a piece of shit his dad was and where the Titans were going with their 1984 wet dream uniforms and took a stand. Punching Jerid within ten seconds of meeting him, convincing Emma to join, teaching Bright's shitty son how not to be a drag. Kamille is cool. Hell I'm cool with most of the cast of this show. Even Reccoa is neat before she gets Newtype fever. Fuck Katz though.

RANKING:

Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam
Mobile Suit Gundam
 
Oct 25, 2017
15,813
I'm quite enjoying these write-ups so far, Man God. Keep em coming.
Thanks for that! ZZ Gundam to follow later on today.

I thought of two more categories this morning that I should have had all along so I'm going to do them from now on and here they are for MSG and Zeta.

MSG:

MECHA: Iconic. You got the Gundam, the GMs, the Guncannon/Guntank, and then you have all of the ridiculously cool stuff the Zeons use with their equally weird names. Zaku being a pun on a japanese term for cannon fodder but you also have Ric Diaz, Goufs, the totally unnecessary water mobile suits. Zeons might be space nazis but they know how to make a cool looking mobile suit.

MAIN CAST: The White Base crew is pretty cool; a bunch of kids conscripted into the military led by a young ensign who assumed command. Char despite all the issues that will spring up later is just the coolest in his mission of personal revenge including using a bazooka to kill a space nazi ninja lady. Even the trope super young children foisted on one of the characters aren't too bad. Overall a great cast.

ZETA:

MECHA: Mixed bag here. The Zeta and Double Zeta are among the coolest things in UC Gundam; so distinct, with a bit of the Macross transformation flair thrown in. You also have Not Char running around in a GOLD PLATED GUNDAM THAT LASERS BOUNCE OFF OF. What swag. It's the Titans/Zeonic suits of the day that are kinda meh. There's so many of them too! They probably average about 1.5 new suits an episode during the middle stretch of the series. Plus you have boring super weapons like the Psycho Gundam, which is basically just a really big black Gundam.

MAIN CAST: One of the best in UC Gundam. I already talked about Kamille/Emma/Bright but all of the returning people are cool. Fa Yuiry has an interesting growth curve from girlfriend of Kamille swept up in all of this to competent pilot, everyone loves Wong Lee kicking the shit out of Kamille for basically no reason, Beltorchika is just a cool name. Also fuck Katz, he's basically proto Hathaway. The bad guys are even better. Jerid is such a fucking inhuman punk. Bask Om deserves what happens to him and Haman is probably the best villain in gundam. Paptimus is interesting but he's also the instigating factor in the whole newtypes are super extra attracted to other newtypes thing. Yes you could make the case for the whole Char/Lalah/Amuro thing but Reccoa literally abandons her principles to get with this guy.
 
Oct 25, 2017
10,260
I love how the official reason for the Rick Dias’s name is that it’s named after Bartolomeu Dias, a Portuguese explorer from the 1400s. It’s such a random and out of nowhere detail, and it’s great.
 

xEik

The Fallen
Nov 17, 2017
2,630
The Catalan Republic
At least Quattro Bajeena's name actually has a (convoluted) reason behind it: it being the fourth name (Casval, Edouard, Char and Quattro) of someone that we first met as Char Aznable which is based on Charles Aznavour whose real name was Shahnour Vaghinag Aznavourian since he was French but his parents were Armenian.
 
Oct 25, 2017
15,286
At least Quattro Bajeena's name actually has a (convoluted) reason behind it: it being the fourth name (Casval, Edouard, Char and Quattro) of someone that we first met as Char Aznable which is based on Charles Aznavour whose real name was Shahnour Vaghinag Aznavourian since he was French but his parents were Armenian.
I would not want that middle name. Do we know if Char fucked over the real Quattro Bajeena at some point?
 
Oct 25, 2017
15,813
MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM ZZ:

FIRST AIRING: March 1986

OVERVIEW: The three way war between the AEUG, Axis Zeon, and the Titans is over...but the cost was deadly. The EF is in tatters after the civil war, the Argama barely survived, Kamille is comatose, Fa is ready to leave with him, and all the other pilots are dead or got their ass kicked by Haman like Char did. Who the fuck even knows where Amuro is. Bright, despite being a young man at this point, is too old for this shit. The newly named Neo Zeon is now in a position to cause trouble for earth and its colonies with Haman leading the charge...when somebody makes an awful, horrible mistake. They kidnap Judau Ashta's little sister. Judau and his friends are junk dealers who want to steal the Zeta and sell it for parts you see, but he's forced into dealing with Neo Zeon after a blond pedophile not named Char Aznable ends up kidnapping his sister. ZZ is wacky for the first half. The Gundam team lead by Judau fights off increasingly bumbling forces from Neo Zeon all while trying to get his sister back. The first half of the series is Gundam The Big Lebowski. The second half is the start of the Federation being absolutely spineless and useless as it spins the dark tale of Dublin getting a colony dropped on it and the Gundam Team taking out Haman once and for all.

MECHA: Horrible. ZZ is an ugly suit. Zeon just has a bunch of super chunky, brightly colored, slightly different Zaku looking things. Queen Mansa at least looks okay and there's a whole bunch of extra Qubeley's running around.

MAIN CAST: Besides Judau and a couple of returning characters this is mainly not a great crew of people. The rest of the gundam team are pretty annoying. A completely fried Bright who just lets Judau do whatever he pleases is a weird change of pace. Haman should just give up on being evil and try living a normal life. Elpeo Ple gives us another enhanced newtype, this time instead of a quiet girl with no emotions you get a rowdy girl who is in love with the main character. Glemmy is here because Char was too busy filming Char's Counterattack, which is why he turns ultra serious in the last half. Glemmy sucks and is a horrible human being.

BRIGHT SPOT: Judau. I'm pretty damn sure this is the only time the main character will ever win this award. He is a singular treat. He's the strongest newtype in the series besides maybe Shakti and her mom, who have miraculous powers. But he's also a really shitty pilot. He just wants to get rich/get his sister back. I swear all the little sister stuff in anime dates back to ZZ, including having another character who is jealous of not being said little sister. Anyways who cares about all that, Judau is a riot. He's voiced by the same VA who does Franky/Bon Clay.

SHOULD YOU WATCH IT: Hmm, probably not unless you are a giant Gundam fan. It's not as iconic as MSG. It's not really that important to the series as a whole like Zeta is. It doesn't really look or sound as nice as Zeta does... but it does have heart. The show is genuinely funny during the first half at various points, and it's just weirdly amusing to see Bright this burnt out. The final act has some great battle stuff and becomes deadly serious again, which is completely off tone from the first 60% of the series.

WOULD I HANG OUT WITH THE MAIN CHARACTER?: Yes but he'd leave right away to go save his sister.
 

xEik

The Fallen
Nov 17, 2017
2,630
The Catalan Republic
While I don't particularly like ZZ because the wackiness of the first 60% is too often simply dumb, I have to disagree on the mecha being horrible.
The problem of mecha in ZZ is generally that it is derivative: AUEG reuses almost everything from Zeta with the only new thing being ZZ itself which is too chunky for my liking and it doesn't appear until the second half. Neo Zeon has a lot of variants of existing stuff but that has always been a Zeon staple (there are tons of different Zakus, Goufs, Gelgoogs, etc. even though most of them only appear in OVAs or MSV).
In my opinion, it's the Neo Zeon stuff where the mecha shines in ZZ even if some are variants or are heavily based on previous MS:
  • Qubeley Mk-II: a mere variant with just more funnels, I simply like Puru's color scheme more than Haman's.
  • Gaza C/D: what a true mass produced transformable MS looks like compared to the slick prototypes that never make it out of being ace pilot machines. It looks a bit simplistic and it dies if anything grazes it but that's more or less equivalent to a GM just not as bad as a Ball.
  • Dreissen: what you get when you remove the goofy parts of Doms and fill the empty space with awesomeness.
  • Bawoo: Neo Zeons own take on the Zeta concept. A cool machine even if it's piloted by an asshole.
  • EWAC Zack: again completely derivative of a Hi-Zack but an interesting concept of mashing AWACS with MS getting you a very distinct head.
  • Honorable mentions: Döven Wolf, Geymalk, Galluss, R-Jarja and Capule.
Not all the Neo Zeon MS are used effectively and some of them just have a joke of a performance but their designs when taking them out of the series itself are perfectly fine and I'd say some of them don't really shine until they appear in Unicorn where they can perform better and are drawn and animated with a lot more care.
 
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Oct 27, 2017
7,931
Char was still advocating for Spacenoid sovereignty and people getting the fuck off Earth in Zeta. The major difference between then and CCA is in Zeta he says he's willing to wait for humanity to grow into that, whereas by the time of CCA he's clearly done waiting and wants to jumpstart that himself. I remember Char's speech in CCA saying something about how Haman in ZZ inspired that change though I can't remember the details.
 
Oct 25, 2017
895
Char was still advocating for Spacenoid sovereignty and people getting the fuck off Earth in Zeta. The major difference between then and CCA is in Zeta he says he's willing to wait for humanity to grow into that, whereas by the time of CCA he's clearly done waiting and wants to jumpstart that himself. I remember Char's speech in CCA saying something about how Haman in ZZ inspired that change though I can't remember the details.
Char was impatient because he doesn't trust people. Man has never had a real relationship that didn't involve deceit or deception beyond his mother.

Except Lalah. Kamille can also arguably be in there.

Amuro?
 

mute

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,800
I love some ZZ zeon suits. With exceptions though I will always gravitate towards bulkier suits, rather than sleeker ones.






Shame so many lack even HG kits.
 
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Oct 25, 2017
15,813
I just watched CCA. Char is a moron. The earth is actually healing before he dumps a rock on Tibet. Then he wants to nuke another chunk of the earth with Axis. He's being a big baby.

The Federation is really lost in the woods after the Gryps conflict. They let Haman destroy Dublin. They literally help Char drop a rock on Tibet before taking his blood money for Axis. They're arguably worse than the Sleeves are in Unicron. They do fuck all in F91, which I'm unfortunately watching as I type this. The cool ones had to rebel to get anything done in Victory Gundam.
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,441
How many canonical colony/asteroid drops has the Earth suffered by the current end of the UC timeline?

My count is...4?
Operation British hits Australia
Operation Stardust hits North America
Dublin gets hit in ZZ
5th Luna hits Tibet

This all happens in the span of about 15 years. The planet should be completely uninhabitable.
 
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xEik

The Fallen
Nov 17, 2017
2,630
The Catalan Republic
I love some ZZ zeon suits. With exceptions though I will always gravitate towards bulkier suits, rather than sleeker ones.
Shame so many lack even HG kits.
The best bet most ZZ MS have at getting an HG is either appearing as a mod in a Gunpla Build series like the R-GyaGya or as an old MS in some OVA like Unicorn as is the case with Nemo (this had an MG previously, though), Zssa, Döven Wolf and Dreissen.
 
Oct 25, 2017
10,260
The core base shows up an episode before the rest of the ZZ IIRC.

The interesting thing about the ZZ being introduced so early is that it's not completely superior to the Zeta. It's better most of the time, but the Zeta's better maneuverability has Judau switching suits with Roux on a few occasions.
 
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Oct 28, 2017
1,757
What was the reception to IBO here?

I'm catching up on stuff from the past few years and totally tuned out any reactions and overall reception to IBO.
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,998
I feel like IBO's reception was generally pretty positive. Speaking for myself, it's easily one of my favorite series. Definitely my favorite AU for sure.
 
Oct 25, 2017
10,260
What was the reception to IBO here?

I'm catching up on stuff from the past few years and totally tuned out any reactions and overall reception to IBO.
It's pretty good. Very unique series. Mika's a really great protagonist and probably the best part of it.
 
Oct 27, 2017
4,744
What was the reception to IBO here?

I'm catching up on stuff from the past few years and totally tuned out any reactions and overall reception to IBO.
It has a couple of boring arcs but overall it’s fantastic and has some of my favorite Gundam characters.

Speaking of IBO, did they ever dub season 2? I wanted to rewatch it all dubbed.