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Offline JasonPratt

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #15 on: January 08, 2018, 08:00:57 AM »


MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM VICTORY (aka V Gundam or Gundam V or V, 1993) -- the latest (so far) story in the Universal Century timeline (aside from a poorly made and received live-action movie, G-Savior, which Sunrise doesn't like to talk about), Gundam V is a crazy beast, even literally so: after the failure of F91's launch, which didn't help Tomino's depression, Bandai was pressuring Sunrise for a hit series better designed to sell toys. It ought to feature a lot of young kids, and be a new property without all the UC baggage making it easy for new fans to get into (especially the new generation of young boys, but also young girls so have a really young girl carrying her baby brother around everywhere), and it should feature mobile suits that transform into helicopters and other things, and LOTS AND LOTS of motor bikes. Heck the enemy suits should ride motor bikes. The enemy battleships should be GIANT MOTORBIKES! Yes, that's the kind of thing Bandai wanted; and if Tomino promised to deliver that, Bandai would fund Sunrise for a full 50 to 52 eps this time.

This also didn't help Tomino's depression.

So he did what they wanted.

But in a giant Take That to the studio, he wrote the series as such a scathing indictment of war, with so many secondary and primary characters dying, that the boy hero constantly has to work through emotional trauma. (Tomino also made sure the Gundam only shows up for the first time in episode 5, leading Bandai to order Sunrise to run that episode first and cobble together the previous three or four eps as subsequent flashbacks through hasty re-edits.)

In effect, Tomino overtly did his best to suicide his own series so no one would bother him about it again -- in his own commentary for the original DVDs, he outright tells people not to watch it.

The result is a series which, despite only recently (2017) being exported to English speaking nations (Malaysian clunky English subtitles again for those who wanted to watch it before recently), and despite being somewhat poorly received by its target audience, has earned a reputation for being one of the best two UC Gundam series to date, up with Zeta Gundam.

In many ways it's a stereotypical Gundam story: a young Newtype boy (Uso Evin, or Uso Ebbing, depending on how his name is transliterated) whose absent parents are heavily involved in the new Gundam prototype, gets caught up in a colonial war against his will when a space colony group (the Zanscare Empire this time, complete with a mysterious white-masked prince antagonist "Char"-ish character named Cronicle Law) decides to militantly expand its influence; the boy falls into a Gundam cockpit through a series of coincidences and learns he has some nascent skill which he develops over the series into being an ace pilot; etc. etc.

But there are some interesting differences, too, the least of which being an inversion of the standard story progression: now the boy starts out on Earth in a settlement colony, goes to space, and finishes back on Earth. (And goes back to space. And finishes back on Earth. This series had a lot of executive meddling.) The series takes place so far into the future of the UC storyline (60 years after Char's Counterattack) that the mobile suits other than the titular Gundam look quite different. (Indeed aside from some brief mentions of the Gundam of the distant past, and the satellite designs, it might as well be a whole new series from scratch. Not coincidentally, most Gundam series henceforth would be fresh alternate universe continuities.) And a lot of mileage is wrung out of the idea that the weapons have advanced so far that even the Gundam's armor is easily breached, meaning Uso has to learn to fight with more obvious tactical skill than previous heroes. V is the first Gundam series to give the "peace princess" character actual political power, too, though unlike future versions of her character her political influence is with the enemy! The animation, though primitive and kind of jerky by 1993 television standards (much moreso by modern anime standards), does have the benefit of almost never using recycled footage: the money is up there on the screen, just not in a way that's easily obvious to appreciate.

Is it a good Gundam series? Despite Tomino's own efforts, or paradoxically because of them, yes it is. I'd still rate a lot of them over it, but it's a worthy entry.

Does that make it a good gateway series? It's a very standard "Gundam" series in many ways, while being surprisingly mature for its deceptively "kiddie" look, and its story stands alone well -- it treats prior stories in a very distant fashion. But I think there are better options.



This ends the report on the Universal Century Gundam storyline.

Next I'll introduce the Alternate Universe stories, which by design are much more self-contained.
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Offline Sir Slash

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #16 on: January 08, 2018, 09:07:04 AM »
Jason Pratt, Ladies and Gentlemen. The 'Cliff Claven' of the Grogheads.   :clap:  And if you don't know who that is..... I bet Jason does.
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Offline mirth

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #17 on: January 08, 2018, 09:15:25 AM »
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Offline JasonPratt

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #18 on: January 08, 2018, 11:27:58 AM »
NOW FOR THE TOO LONG DIDN'T READ VERSION!  >:D O:-)

About half of the Gundam series are set in one continuity, known as the "Universal Century". Consequently, even though some of the later series in the UC are very good, they don't serve very well as gateways to the series as a whole. Whereas some of the earlier ones are of lesser quality (being older productions).

I'll mark the series which seem to me (for various reasons) to be good gateways into the overall property.


* MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM -- this is the original series. As a series it's kind of painful; as the three compilation theatrical films, it works quite well as an introduction to the UC story and, naturally, it introduces a lot of the story tropes that future series play with. (And you need to know this series is ALL ABOUT playing with its own story tropes. Usually; there are a few exceptions.)

MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM: ORIGINS -- this is a series of prequel films, setting up the original series. They retcon some things, and also focus on the rise of the main antagonist of the series (and his sister). I've heard variable things about the quality, but I haven't seen the films yet myself so I don't know how well they'd serve as a Gundam gateway.

* GUNDAM 0080: WAR IN THE POCKET -- this was the first Gundam OVA series (produced to sell directly on home video, not broadcast), created for the 10th anniversary. It's basically a 2 hour movie broken into four episodes, and might have a compilation film. Its plot structure is a little weird, as though the writer(s?) couldn't decide if this was supposed to be set toward the end of the original series or as a prequel. (I like to watch it as a prequel; but officially it's the other way around.) It plays around with its established story tropes a lot. In a way it's a good introduction to the series, packed into a little pocket of a story, so to speak.

* GUNDAM 008TH TEAM -- this is another OVA series, set during the period of the second theatrical film of the first main series. It has very little to do with the plot of the first main series, but a lot of fans regard it as one of the top 5 or 3 (or 1) best. The short version is "Gundam Vietnam", and it remains one of the most "real" of the "real robot" entries in the series (despite the vagina telepath superweapon at the end. ;)  :D ) It can serve as a good introduction to the series per se, but not very good as an introduction to the plot of the story of the Universal Century.

* GUNDAM IGLOO -- the first all-CGI series, created as 9 sequential short stories which cover the periphery of the main original series story from the start to the end of the One Year War. Despite looking like a PS2 cutscene, it's pretty good, and could serve as a good gateway series. It's also verrrry strong on the "real robot" aspect of the series. (On the other hand, the facial expressions go for hyper-emotional anime types in a realistic 3D model so... ymmv.) It hammers down hard on the war-is-the-greatest-enemy themes, although by its design it tends to avoid child soldiers.

GUNDAM THUNDERSTRIKE DECEMBER SKY -- a miniseries created as webisodes, compiled into a film. This is set near the end of the One Year War, but only deals with the main plot in a periphery way. The film is set in and around the wreckage of a space colony destroyed by the fighting of the war, which by a quirk of the war's development now controls a key logistic track. (Like a ruined fortress tower overlooking a road.) The Zeon hold the ground, using the "Living Dead" battalion: an experimental unit comprised totally of handicapped soldiers wounded in combat. The Federation group trying to take the ground are based around survivors and family of the colonists who died thanks to Zeon's war in the area. The film (miniseries) was created by the team who made "Cowboy Bebop", I think (or if not they're aping that style amazingly); so for anyone who knows that show, this is essentially "Gundam Bebop". ;) It plays around a ton with established story tropes, which is fine. It's a flashy and stylish but also hard-hitting war film. I greatly recommend it, but maybe not as a gateway introduction to the franchise. (A sequel series is being produced and running right now somewhere; I look forward to the film compilation.)

GUNDAM 0083: STARDUST MEMORY -- another OVA series, set as an immediate sequel to the original main series, and bridging into Zeta Gundam. As such it doesn't serve well as a gateway series; but among established fans it has a high reputation.

GUNDAM ZETA -- also known as Zeta Gundam. The official second series in the UC continuity, and the second Gundam anime ever produced. It's also the whole reason why Gundam has continued on until today, since the first series flopped hard! The series itself has a well-earned reputation among the top 5 (or 3, or 1) series, and introduces a lot of story tropes that future series play with; but naturally it isn't good as a gateway really. Avoid the compilation films in my opinion: they chop too much of the story out, leading to incoherence.

GUNDAM ZZ -- also known as ZZ Gundam or Double Zeta. The official third series in the UC continuity. Often reviled by older fans, it was only recently given a proper North American release. It introduces a few important new story tropes for future series to play with, but its overall concept (of the aftermath of a three-or-four-sided war where the sides are all exhausted and trying to scrape up enough oomph to finish the conflict) naturally generates some serious pacing problems. Also the start of the series involves some major mood whiplash compared to the end of Zeta. Personally I like the series, but not a good gateway recommendation.

CHAR'S COUNTERATTACK -- the first (and as far as I know still the only original) Gundam cinematic feature film. It has some plusses and minuses, more minuses in my opinion, and concludes the storyline of the main protagonist and antagonist from way back in the original MSG series. This isn't the end of the "Universal Century" storyline. Nor, regardless of quality opinions, is it a good gateway. A lot of fans adore this film, probably for the grand finale where everyone sacrificially cooperates to save the world.

GUNDAM UNICORN -- a series of seven (originally meant to be six) movies. Sort of "The Da Vinci Code Gundam", but not that controversial. Consciously tries hard to give the stereotypical tell-the-same-story-over-again-but-different Gundam story design (for which the series is famous and infamous), but does so for purposes of saluting the series. Personally I wasn't much of a fan of the series, but it has its supporters. Not a good gateway in any case.

* GUNDAM F91 -- the second produced feature film, but cobbled together with some animation upgrades from 13 episodes of pre-production on a series that was sold with the promise of !!PIRATE GUNDAMS!! but which was taking too much time to get there so the producers abandoned the project. Better than it has any right to be, it manages to tell a whole stereotypical Gundam story arc in 90 minutes, and while it's a sequel to everything in the above list the story doesn't really require knowing that. Technically I list it as a gateway, but there are better options. (The !!!PIRATE GUNDAMS!!! do show up eventually in some manga sequels to this movie, and were a huge hit among fans.)

* GUNDAM VICTORY -- this series, one of the few that ended up running the full planned 50 eps, happens so far in the future of the UC that it kind of counts as the first alternate universe story. It's readily available in North America now, and fans tend to think highly of it, but it's a quirky beast because the lead writer was intentionally trying to kill the franchise (and in the commentary for the original DVD release, he actively tells people not to watch it. ;) ) Features a lot of the typical Gundam story tropes, but plays with them a little more, and is liked by fans for being more grimdark than the bouncy toy-like presentation (battleships made of motorcyles!) would visually indicate. Technically I suppose it could count as a gateway, but there are better options.

G-SAVIOR -- this is the only live-action film so far, set sometime after GVictory, and it's so bad that Bandai practically disavowed it so that it doesn't use the "Gundam" name or terms. Might be impossible to get anyway, and we shall never speak of it again.  :crazy2:

GUNDAM RECONQUISTA -- really it's own self-contained alternate universe story, but technically takes place very far in the future of the UC (so no longer called the Universal Century). Gorgeous animation, in some places; but while I own and have watched most of it, the age of its main characters feels too young for me to care much about the situation, and in my opinion it doesn't distinguish itself enough from many previous series (some of which it apes, as traditional for Gundam series). Technically I suppose it could count as a gateway, but there are better options.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2018, 07:40:01 AM by JasonPratt »
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Offline JasonPratt

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #19 on: January 08, 2018, 01:00:09 PM »
NOW FOR THE TL;DR VERSION FROM AT LEAST ONE OR MORE ALTERNATE UNIVERSES!  :D

I figured I'd spare the thread from essays on these. But I have them. I DO HAVE THEM!  >:D


MOBILE FIGHTER G GUNDAM (aka Mobile Suit Gundam G, Mobile Fighting Legend G Gundam, Gundam G, G Gundam, G, 1994... it has a lot of nicknames and relabels) -- this is one of those Gundam series for people who hate Gundam series, but it's ssssoooooooo different that I can't in good conscience call it a good gateway series. Yet it's the reason the series wasn't canceled after Gundam Victory (see previous entries), where the producers felt like the series was running out of gas and figured they couldn't lose anything and would still sell toys for a final 15th anniversary run, so they gave the keys to a writer/director who did not even remotely want to make a Gundam series and told him "make it about whatever you want to do that sounds fun and awesome; just include some Gundamy things occasionally for flavor." {inhale!} The result not only kick-started the never-ending Gundam series going down to today, but also is a wild, epic ride in its own right. Assuming you like crazy super-robot martial art tournaments where the martial artists pilot giant robots. Including a giant robot horse. Piloted by a horse. This is Gundam on way too much breakfast cereal. I find it deliriously entertaining, but it's admittedly an acquired taste -- and admittedly this series kind of spoiled the whole "real robot" genre standard. (But Gundam was slowly doing that anyway.) Pacific Rim borrows a number of things from this series! For my essay on it click here.


!* GUNDAM WING -- this series helped launch the American anime network TOONAMI, and introduced Gundam to major audiences in North America for the first time. It takes the competing/friendly martial artists in custom Gundam suits from Gundam G, and marries this concept to the original storyline, serving as the first real reboot to the proper series. It was freakishly popular, and due to its cute-boy character designs almost single-handedly brought a major girl audience to anime (and to Gundam) for the first time. (It also, incidentally, started serious fan shipping of the characters as homosexual couples, though this is not literally part of the show at all.) The series has a grand finale film (sometimes split up into a 3-part OVA) called Endless Waltz, which is worth watching as a finale although the series doesn't really need it. It takes the themes of youth in war from the original series a lot more seriously than Gundam G did, and with its snazzy art and complex political plotting and hectic action sequences and decent soundtrack... {inhale} I actually recommend this as a gateway to the property more than I do any of the series from the main UC continuity! It's still one of my top three recommendations. My longer essay on it here.

Toonami gets some details wrong, but focuses more on the plot than Bandai's own trailer. And still, it's Optimus Prime promoting the series.





* AFTER WAR GUNDAM X -- only recently made available for the first time in North America, this series is beloved by fans for... well, I honestly don't know. I like it, but it isn't the best thing out there. It's the shortest of the full series, and that's a plus I guess! Also it has an especially dark Mad Maxian post-apocalyptic setting, where 99 percent of humanity has been wiped out; and yet the series is pretty upbeat and chipper (with telepathic dolphins even), with one of the happiest endings ever in series history. It takes the basic series tropes and has fun playing around with them. I'd recommend it over the later UC series as a gateway, but there are better and/or more important series (to the property) out there.


TURN A GUNDAM -- the original series creator returned here for an alternate universe story, which he intended to be his final work on the series, and which he designed as a distant future sequel to all previous series before (loosely tying in the alternate universe stories, too). It is one quirky beast! -- uhhhhh very roughly, it's World War One Gundam. Not quite as cool as that sounds, mainly because not quite as WW1 as that sounds. People on Earth are living a late 19th / early 20th century European life when Spacenoids from the Moon start arriving -- and start causing trouble, both politically and in an HG Wells War of the Worlds kind of way. I really thought I was going to like this series, but perhaps due to only being able to get a Malaysian subtitle I've never finished it. It's available now in a proper North American release (but the effort to release it originally in North America sunk Bandai's distribution arm!) I don't really recommend it as a gateway.


If you watch this promo for its original canceled American release and think, "Wow that looks dumb as hell"... yeah, trust your instincts on this one. It isn't that dumb, but it's reaaaaaaaalllllly an acquired taste.




!!!* GUNDAM SEED -- this was the first truly modern reboot of the original story, although still in its own separate continuity and storyline (with different characters and situations), bringing along a lot of the new trope developments since Gundam Wing. Very popular in its day, this is still my top choice for a gateway Gundam series, combining at least a little of the best of all previous series before it. It only suffers from too much repeated animation, and (more importantly) too many flashbacks and recap episodes -- a sign that Sunrise was struggling to fill the expected 50 episodes. Notably in the recent High Definition Remaster, at least two episodes were outright omitted for being mere recap eps! My essay on it here.

Let Optimus Prime commercial this for you:




GUNDAM SEED STARGAZER -- a very skippable short animated sidestory in the "SEED" continuity, technically set during the sequel. It has its fans, partly for showing better a colony drop situation from the sequel, and partly because it takes an interesting route of designing a Gundam for exploration rather than combat.


GUNDAM SEED DESTINY -- the only full sequel series to an Alternate Universe series so far, roughly comparable to Gundam Zeta's plot. It's a fine followup to SEED, and if you like the first series you should continue on hereby, but I personally recommend getting the series of four compilation TV films instead (which are typically sold as an OVA set) since the series per se includes a ton of filler and recap and flashbacks. Obviously, being a sequel series, it isn't a good gateway candidate. My essay on it here.


SUPERIOR DEFENDER GUNDAM FORCE -- the first fully CGI Gundam series (not miniseries, but series), this oddity remains hard to find in English and very expensive to collect, at least in its first season. (The second season can be found in a nice collection pack for reasonable prices.) It is at least three thousand percent insane, and intended for young kids; and its plot has nothing to do with Gundam story tropes. But I was surprised to find I really enjoyed it, and it was produced in North America (for American kid consumption) with good English voice acting. My essay on it here. Not at all a gateway to the franchise per se, but in its own way it's a Gundam series for people who hate Gundam series, and as a serial cartoon for young kids it has some dark seriousness to it every once in a while.


!!** GUNDAM 00 -- a verrrrrryyy loose thematic remake of Gundam Wing (much as SEED and SEED Destiny remade MSG and Zeta Gundam respectively), this series benefits from its two seasons being twice as short (25 eps each) as usual, keeping production values high and the plot moving along briskly. Like Gundam Wing, a somewhat older teen cast might resonate better with older watchers. It makes just as good an introduction to major Gundam ideas and themes as Seed (+ Destiny), in an attractive and easily accessible package (including fine English vocal dubbing). Seed (+ Destiny) admittedly fits the basic Gundam plot much more closely, but Seed's 100 episode length also decompresses into filler much more often (though largely addressed in Destiny by the special edition films). Arguably 00 provides the highest quality gateway to Gundam (even if not to the basic plotline) currently available, though Wing itself is no slouch in that department. I give the slight edge to Seed as a gateway show only because of its more traditional plot structure.  My essay on it here



This series didn't need an epilogue film, but got one anyway: "A Wakening of the Trailblazer". I enjoyed it a lot as a fine send-off to the series, and it's worth watching if you like G 00, but otherwise don't bother.



There have been several more series since I compiled that report, including two I own (a super-deformed kid's version of Romance of the Three Kingdoms, and a UC story called Thunderstrike) but haven't watched yet; and one that sounds good on paper (the colonies typically found on the story are on Mars instead of orbiting along with Earth), Iron Blooded Orphan. Reconquista I just can't get myself to finish. Gundam AGE I haven't watched, but its fan reception has been highly variable, with everyone agreeing that the premise (to run three generations of kids in a somewhat typical Gundam story) sounds better on paper than in execution as the series goes on.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2018, 01:02:33 PM by JasonPratt »
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Offline JasonPratt

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #20 on: January 08, 2018, 01:11:17 PM »
Since my TLDR posts need a TLDR...  :timeout: :wow: #:-)

Recapping my top three recommendations for getting into the series, in ascending order:

• Gundam Wing (and its epilogue movie Endless Waltz). The first "modern" series.

• Gundam 00, which (with its grand finale movie A Wakening of the Trailblazer) I'd regard as the best Gundam series on the market currently.

• Gundam SEED (plus the four Destiny TV movies) which though not quite as high quality as 00 is the most traditional of the recent Gundam series -- thus arguably serving as the most representative version of the franchise as a whole.

These are all self-contained series which don't require knowing anything about each other, although watching Wing first might help in appreciating some tropes it establishes when they show up in later series.


My best recommendation for the classic Gundam "Universal Century" storyline, remains the MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM compilation film trilogy, which introduces the whole franchise from scratch. If you like that, and want more UC story, try Zeta Gundam afterward (though not the film trilogy compilation), with War in the Pocket, Stardust Memories, 08th Team (especially), Thunderstrike (especially), and Igloo all salted in for sidestory taste.


For something completely different afterward, and/or if you just like the idea of a martial-art competition series like Kickboxer or Enter the Dragon (or Mortal Kombat or Street Fighter) featuring giant robots wearing sombreros or dressed like a windmill -- Mobile Fighter Gundam G is a fun hoot with a serious meditation on the horror and grandeur of war sprinkled among a Gundam shaped like a cobra.  :D (It was also hugely influential in shaping story tropes afterward.)
« Last Edit: January 30, 2018, 07:41:47 AM by JasonPratt »
FIRE IN THE GROGS TOO -- a four-player full team mp of GMT's Vietnam War boardgame Fire in the Lake, recreated in TTS.

The GROGPUBLIC OF ROME ongoing forum game thread

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR

The full pdf of Cry of Justice has been posted to the Grogheads Book category here.

Offline Sir Slash

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #21 on: January 08, 2018, 02:14:52 PM »
WHO hid Pratt's Decaf? PLEASE, give it back!  ;D
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Offline mirth

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #22 on: January 08, 2018, 02:22:50 PM »
"45 minutes of pooping Tribbles being juggled by a drunken Horta would be better than Season 1 of TNG." - SirAndrewD

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Offline Staggerwing

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #23 on: January 08, 2018, 05:40:55 PM »
^LOL
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Offline undercovergeek

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #24 on: January 09, 2018, 07:41:39 AM »
Could you elaborate on that Jason?

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #25 on: January 11, 2018, 10:30:20 PM »
Of course!


...just kidding.  >:D


I legitimately tried to get back into Gundam Reconquista tonight, but only could get through one more ep (to the 2/3 mark) before calling it quits and consigning it to be resold back on Amazon if possible. I can understand why other people might like it; even other Gundam fans maybe: it has good art (usually, not always, and the distinction can be insanely jarring), some colorful designs, a generally bright upbeat tone...

It's the bright upbeat tone that does me in along with the overly young age of most of the cast. The latter isn't unusual for a G property, but the former is.

I actually like another even more upbeat G series, Superior Defender Gundam Force, but it's more of an affectionate fan homage with tons of references but not really a "Gundam" story. It also has a much smarter plot than the American kiddie presentation would suggest on the surface, and plays somewhat like a (very affectionate) satire of what the Japanese think American kids' action serial cartoons are like. But the key point is that SDGF isn't really a Gundam story, so I don't mind its tone so much.

G Reconquista is very overtly a Gundam story all across its surface. But it seems shallow and repetitive, and the spirit of the franchise just isn't there -- not for me anyway.


By illustrative contrast, I hopefully popped in the film (based on a limited manga series) Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt: December Sky, and in that 70 minutes of story was more of the spirit of the franchise than in 2/3 of Reconquista so far.


The essential thematic premise of Gundam has always been, from the beginning, that war, while often glorious, is the true and ultimate enemy of mankind generally and of individual persons specifically. That's a concept simple enough and deep enough to run many variations on (even if the franchise sometimes runs the variations too similarly.) And it necessarily rests at the root of all character designs, character arcs, and dramatic tensions in the best representatives of the franchise.

Thunderbolt gets that. Reconquista doesn't seem to. The form of the theme is occasionally there, and that was when I had some hope for the series, but I just lost patience waiting for the theme to come back.


Thunderbolt is a dark, gritty, adult rumination (set toward the end of the One Year War of the original series, as a side story) on those themes, from plenty of different angles and to different degrees. It also looks sharp as hell (despite some intentional deformities in facial animations), being set in and around the ruins of a couple of shattered space colonies, where the debris itself is lethal (hard sci-fi in space, woo!) and the static shocks spark off the huge thunderbolts of the title.

It also leans hard on how monstrous the Zeon (space colony faction) mobile suits seem when fighting the under-developed Federal suits; and on how monstrous the Gundam is by comparison to most of the Zeon suits. I ate that up like cake, on the side of the steak of the rest of the film.  :smitten: The general grey and gray morality of the franchise is in full effect, too, as good people try to deal with the war situations they find themselves in -- sometimes crumbling under the pressure, sometimes rising above it, sometimes both at the same time.

Thunderbolt doesn't require knowing anything about the main plot of the (early part of the) main continuity of the series; anything necessary, the plot delivers brief instruction on. The Zeon want to be self-determining colonies, and are willing to lean into fascism to get there. The Feddies don't want them to and ditto. A war about this has been going on for about a year, and everyone keeps being scarred by it, physically, mentally, and (so to speak) spiritually. The heroism of war is necessary just to keep going; but slams repeatedly into the harsh realities of war, rising to transcend beyond war on rare occasions. (More rare in this film than often in other G series.)

A Federation task force, comprised of survivors of the doomed colony, fights to drive out the Zeon battalion that has taken up position within its wreckage, which both sides think (rightly or wrongly) to confer a strategic position in the broader strategic war around them. That battalion, known as the Living Dead, is also a science research project on how to fit disabled soldiers with prostheses to continue the war effectively: which means on defense they take up positions and snipe incoming Federal attacks.

That's all you need to know; the rest is gravy and icing (and steak).

Also unlike Reconquista which has no English dub at all (which usually doesn't bother me much), Thunderbolt has a fine English dub.


For those who know the now-classic anime series Cowboy Bebop? It's like that, but in the Gundam franchise. (Otherwise never mind; but go watch CB sometimes, a super-stylish bounter-hunter series blending a lot of genres set in a pretty realistic sci-fi future of colonizing the solar system.)
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Offline BanzaiCat

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #26 on: January 12, 2018, 05:15:56 AM »
I'm still not getting it. Are Gundams like Pokemans?

Offline Barthheart

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #27 on: January 12, 2018, 06:25:45 AM »
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Offline mirth

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #28 on: January 12, 2018, 08:26:47 AM »
That's not a Gundam. Or a Pokieman. Nor is it a Digomin.
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Offline JasonPratt

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Re: Gundam?
« Reply #29 on: January 12, 2018, 12:19:40 PM »
Is it a Dogman!?  :D


(I lol'd at poking the bear, btw.)
FIRE IN THE GROGS TOO -- a four-player full team mp of GMT's Vietnam War boardgame Fire in the Lake, recreated in TTS.

The GROGPUBLIC OF ROME ongoing forum game thread

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR

The full pdf of Cry of Justice has been posted to the Grogheads Book category here.