One Fan's Thoughts on Z Gundam

Mobile Suit Gundam and all its spinoffs

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Tachyon
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One Fan's Thoughts on Z Gundam

Post by Tachyon » Sun Nov 06, 2005 6:32 am

I finally finished episode 50 today of Z Gundam. I have now seen the entire show subtitled. I haven't had the chance to see all of Mobile Suit Gundam but I did see the 3 movies subtitled and read some translated manga on it.

Now I want to watch Gundam ZZ real bad! :!:

I really liked Z Gundam but that shouldn't be a surprise to any of us. I feel safe saying we all know it's good. Although it isn't my favorite mecha series it's in my top 5. It has earned its place as one of the "high water mark" mecha series to which so many others are compared.

Some things did annoy me but I'm so picky that that always happens. The fact that mobile suit cockpits are unsecured and access to the flight deck(s) is so easy got to be too hard swallow. Especially towards the end when Katz regularly acted like a psycho. Using teenage pilots somehow worked in Mobile Suit Gundam but in Z Gundam Fa, Katz and a few others were such liabilities to their factions/teams that it got a little ridiculous. Has any nation ever sent teenagers to war as fighter pilots or tank crew members? I'm guessing no.

One point worth pondering was whether or not it was a worthy successor to Mobile Suit Gundam. I think it was. There were differences, certainly, but I think it succeeded admirably as a sequel to the first series. It didn't deal with the overall setting of the UC Gundam world as much as the first series but I didn't mind that. I felt like I wasn't missing anything I needed. The animation and overall "look" of things was updated without breaking too much from what came before.

The topic of newtypes was raised and explored in more depth. Newtypes was always an aspect of UC Gundam that interested me so I'm thankful Z Gundam was created before Studio Sunrise decided to shut the door on the idea. Char and Amuro were newtypes that used their abilities to boost their combat reflexes and sometimes benefited from insightful flashes. Camille, however, was a different sort of newtype. His connections with people and potent sensing abilities opened the door to new areas of newtype talents. It wasn't clear if later newtypes were becoming more powerful than earlier ones but I got that impression.

To sum up, people aren't blowing hot air when they say Z Gundam is a landmark mecha series. Those of you who haven't seen it should consider buying the DVD box set.
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Post by Mave » Sun Nov 06, 2005 10:08 am

Gotta agree with most of your post tachyon and I think also that sometimes people let nostalgia cloud their judgement on the series.
It is good, but not over-the-top-and-then-some good. There definately are some sillyness present in the series despite its grim and dark tone and some arcs do have pacing problems (and more sillyness).
The ending left things open for ZZ... BUT on its own merit it wasnt really that complete or good IMO. Guess they wanted to save some stuff for ZZ...
The series had excellent characters (and bad ones too) and some really good mechadesigns. I dont think there ever was so many and such varied mechadesigners working on the same project and the result shows.

Engage

Post by Engage » Sun Nov 06, 2005 9:55 pm

Has any nation ever sent teenagers to war as fighter pilots or tank crew members? I'm guessing no.
Actually, there have been countries that sent teenagers to war. The first, and most famous, example that comes to mind would be Hitler Germany's SS and its last-ditch effort to defend Berlin. Some soldiers were as young as 12 and most of the older, veteran soldiers, joked that the young recruits were barely out of diapers.

Even today this is happening. Africa forces 13 year olds into service with the military and lets not forget the various militias that still exist in other countires.

So the part about teenagers during a war is entirely possible. Even Captain Paolo from the first Gundam series admits this "He may be too young to enlist these days, but history is filled with tales of soldiers only 15 or 16 years old."

Sorry, but I'm kinda a history buff.

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Post by Tachyon » Mon Nov 07, 2005 12:57 am

I don't doubt that teenagers have been involved in wars as soldiers -- but as aircraft pilots or tank crew members? That's what I guessed no on. And, it was just a guess. I don't claim any knowledge on the subject.
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Re: One Fan's Thoughts on Z Gundam

Post by hitori » Mon Nov 07, 2005 1:09 am

Tachyon wrote:...The fact that mobile suit cockpits are unsecured and access to the flight deck(s) is so easy got to be too hard swallow.
Modern fighter aircraft don't have ignition keys either.
It is that way to reduce steps to clear before a takeoff.
If the pilot has to have a key or submit to retinal scan, that's time wasted when bandits are destroying your runway.

The only security measures are cockpit door lock and control lock.
The former locks the cockpit out but it can always be opened from the outside, ie. pilot sitting inside cockpit can't prevent outside access.
The latter locks the yoke (steering wheel) and one of the pedals.

Also, during initial 'ignition', a startup cart has to be hooked up to the engines to fire it up since there is no starter motor.
For planes like the F-18 series, once one of the engines is running it can be used to fire the second one.
There are various covers and tags for intakes and whatnot that needs to be removed as well.

But Agama was always on standby.
Which means MS's would probably be prepped for takeoff at any time.
No covers, no locks and engines running.
So if you know even just a little about MS piloting, I think you'd be able to steal an MS on standby.

Just last month, a charter jet was stolen in FL and found on a remote runway in GA.
Nobody noticed it take off, nobody noticed it land.
Sound ridiculous?
But it's true.
A charter jet is left running hot when awaiting the next charter and a runway closed for the night will not be monitored by anyone.
You just need some skills to land and takeoff without guidance and lights, but that can be done.

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Post by hitori » Mon Nov 07, 2005 1:32 am

Oops that's not what I wanted to write... :?

I really like the Zeta Gudam as well.
I'd say I like it best out of any Gundam directed by Tomino.
The actions and philosophy of many characters were hard to understand.
But think that was done intentionally to show how ridiculous war is.
During a war, it's not rational thinking and reasons that decide the outcome, but the determination and hard will of the people who have power.

And Tomino always tried to show the ugly side of 'adult world'
He says that he doesn't believe in that as much now.
The Zeta movie, he says, will show a different angle.

If you would rate Z in top 5, what other 'giant robot' are your favorites?
My top 5 would be:
-Aim for the top! Gunbuster (Top wo nerae! Gunbuster)
-Stellvia of Space (Uchu no Stellvia)
-Mobile Suit Z Gundam
-Mobile police Patlabor
-Macross+

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Post by Mave » Mon Nov 07, 2005 8:58 am

Id have to say my Tomino favorite is definately Turn A. Its to this date his most mature (as in a storytelling sense, not blood and gore) and complete work, with great characters, cool mecha (yes sue me! :P ), almost no Tomino-sillyness and a superb ending that ties together almost everything.

King Gainer is another recent Tomino-favorite that I think gets absolutely too little attention. Its a excellent little show if you like more lighthearted mecha with some truely unorthodox designs (again, probably why it didnt got the popularity it deserves).

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Post by junchoon » Mon Nov 07, 2005 12:21 pm

imho, Z is as Tachyon said, a worthy successor to the original series, but i still feel the original series retains the crown. having not seen Turn A, i will have to say that the original TV series still the best. guess i will try and get the series one of these days.

as for ZZ, i feel it is kinda silly, no focus, i can't finish watching the series straight, and skipped and fast-forwarded the episodes. :(

wps

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