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REVIEW: Mobile Suit Gundam 0083: Stardust Memory Blu-Ray


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Valhern



Joined: 19 Jan 2015
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:20 am Reply with quote
My experience with Stardust Memory was mostly unenjoyable and basically a chore to go through. At first I was actually excited because the OP and ED were pretty cool, the character acting as well as the mecha are gorgeous (and this never falters throughout the show), but everything was so boring, so flatly constructed that by episode 3 I didn't care unless Monsha was on screen because he seemed to have a little of an interesting personality, as well as his eventual girlfriend who was my heroine when that drunkard wanted to grope girls.

Nina Purprleton was mostly a highlight until a momen in which she gets pretty mad at Kou for being a little juvenile about the whole war thing, but in the same episode, with no explanation at all, she rushes to him when he hastily takes the Gundam and tries to give him I don't know what to improve the maneuvaribility. Other than the convenient trope of anybody can take a Gundam and just go because no one is protecting those things, it just seemed way out of place. And that discussion never became relevant; Nina is still kinda cool but her relationship with Kou just fetl incredibly artificial and plain, so I didn't even feel sympathy for the guy being an idiot at asking her out, I felt frustration, even.

I had mostly no care for Gato, he just evily shows up, evily walks out, although his way out had a very old Gundam-like feeling to it. Talking about that, the whole show felt very little like Gundam to me; for one part Kou is not only an unrelatable character, he is NO character, for me he is just there to rethread some bits of previous protagonists (I literally laughed when everyone was so happy he came back because I was way too disconnected).

I remember there is another woman villain but other than planninc the Colony Drop, I have no idea what she does of relevance. Most of the cast outside main four is notably the same.

Gorgeous looking, but emotionally flat and I don't really see the complete appeal of Gundam to it.
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Kicksville



Joined: 20 Nov 2010
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:30 am Reply with quote
It's worth repeating how great the animation in this is - it's not an exaggeration to say this contains some of the best mechanical animation ever produced. The representation of space and space travel is also very significantly improved over previous anime. Definitely worth a look if only for this.

The story itself works well for what it is, and the overall production, I think, manages to survive being Stupid Gundam. Mainly, there is a completely unnecessary, out of nowhere, dumb plot twist in the second half, but things are moving hard enough at that point that it gets away with it (it's something that doesn't really make much of a difference anyway).
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Fronzel



Joined: 11 Sep 2003
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 10:41 am Reply with quote
It strikes me that the main character of this series is a failure by the usual standards of this kind of show. spoiler[He doesn't defeat his giant-robot rival or even gain his respect (a shonen fighting convention that Gundam series are often thick with) and gets ditched by his love interest until she's unwillingly set away by the other guy.]

Quote:
Mayfly of Space and Mayfly of Space 2, a picture drama created for this Blu-Ray's 2016 release in Japan...The story also focuses on the Zeon side, further blurring the line of who the “good guys” are.

Some Gundam series have a fetish for this kind of thing but I find it extremely strange in 0083. The Zeons in this series came off to me as deluded and arrogant; fighting just because they refused to acknowledge that they lost the war a few years previously. They do nothing but cause destruction. There's a reason there's that scene where a construction engineer tries to chide the Zeons that the colony they're stealing is supposed to provide homes for people only to get casually killed just to shut him up, right? The final twist of sorts is that spoiler[the colony drop wasn't aimed at the Federation military HQ like the botched one from the first TV series was but just at the center of North America. This isn't explained in the show but there only thing in the Great Plains is farms so I have to imagine they were deliberately trying to cause starvation on Earth.] Gundam like most multi-series anime isn't big on continuity so it never comes up, though.

Gato has contempt for Kou for not fighting for anything he believes in but Gato's convictions result in nothing but evil. More on that below.

If anything it's Zeta Gundam that get complicated by the events of this seris. In Zeta the Titans are clearly evil but 0083 provides a rather good argument for their existence, and, ironically, for the use of force in general; all the warfare after the original series seems to have happened because that first war wasn't won hard enough; shades of the First World War here.

Valhern wrote:
I had mostly no care for Gato, he just evily shows up, evily walks out, although his way out had a very old Gundam-like feeling to it.

I don't agree; Gato seemed very human to me. He had firmly-held loyalties and beliefs that he fought in the name of and never stoops to cartoonish evil but clearly thinks he's doing what needs to be done...but he seems blind to the fact that the only thing he's accomplishing is death and destruction on a gratuitous scale. He's an excellent villain.
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Valhern



Joined: 19 Jan 2015
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 10:54 am Reply with quote
Fronzel wrote:
Valhern wrote:
I had mostly no care for Gato, he just evily shows up, evily walks out, although his way out had a very old Gundam-like feeling to it.

I don't agree; Gato seemed very human to me. He had firmly-held loyalties and beliefs that he fought in the name of and never stoops to cartoonish evil but clearly thinks he's doing what needs to be done...but he seems blind to the fact that the only thing he's accomplishing is death and destruction on a gratuitous scale. He's an excellent villain.


Not saying he is cartoonishly evil or that he does things for the sake of being evil, but to me he seems to be the villain just because he was placed there and happened to find Kou, and the relationship with him is vastly underwhelming.

To me he shows up, he is the strongest rival in sight, and walks out like that until he has to fight again. I do agree with you about his character being more Gundam-like in the end, which is what I liked about him, but not enough for me to care about him as a villain or as a standout character.
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meiam



Joined: 23 Jun 2013
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 11:04 am Reply with quote
Been awhile since I saw it, but I remember quite liking it. Partially because of the gorgeous mech design/animation and partially because I felt like it avoided most of what I dislike about most gundam show (very little space wizard, not too many overlong speech, a main character who's actually qualified to pilot). Actually about the main character, he's not great, but at least I wasn't actively rooting for him to get killed like Zeta Kamille.

The fact that its an OVA also means its not a monster of the week show which also helps.

I do wish we'd get new updated gunpla for this. The MG GP02 and 03 are really old and could use an update (mechanicore is remaking ths GP02 which should be interesting).
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Zin5ki
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 3:28 pm Reply with quote
Fronzel wrote:
The final twist of sorts is that spoiler[the colony drop wasn't aimed at the Federation military HQ like the botched one from the first TV series was but just at the center of North America.]

In its favour, I can certainly say that 0083 managed to avoid descending into oblivion against its sister OVAs by simply offering something unexpected in its climactic moments. For better or for worse, something tonally extemporaneous took the place of the usual tale of triumph and reconciliation, and in doing so it at least elicited a surprise. spoiler[The act of Nina being lured back to Gato in the face of all moral sense has attracted many a critical utterance—especially given her complicity in the colony drop being passed over without any suggested atonement—but complaints of predictability are unlikely to be amongst them.]
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Levonr



Joined: 19 Nov 2003
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 3:52 pm Reply with quote
I love the music, its a great sounding James Horner ripoff Laughing
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jeromeskee



Joined: 13 Jan 2006
Posts: 142
PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 4:19 pm Reply with quote
The main thing I loved about 0083 was the final battle between Kou and Gato. It was a pinnacle of hand drawn animation for the Gundam series (one of the greatest final battles ever animated in anime ever imo) and truly a sight to behold, especially in Blu-Ray quality where it really shines Cool
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penguintruth



Joined: 08 Dec 2004
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 5:46 pm Reply with quote
It's a good-looking show, but it has probably the worst characters in the entire Gundam franchise. Kou is a loser's loser, he fails at literally everything he sets out to do and he whines every step of the way (even though he volunteered for all this). He even goes AWOL and actively aids the enemy. Nina Purpleton is just as bad, an emotional wreck but a total hypocrite about it, and dumber than a sack of nickels. Monsha is just irritating. Keith is bland to the core. Gato is nothing but a two-dimensional zealot. The plot is excessive, not needing both the fleet nuking and colony drop to justify the Titans, which just makes the Federation look like a pack of imbeciles on top of their corruption, and the heroes go out of their way to sabotage themselves toward the end.

In other words, it's a good entry in the Gundam franchise if you mute it or skip all character dialogue scenes. Otherwise, it's kind of terrible.
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SilverTalon01



Joined: 02 Apr 2012
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:49 pm Reply with quote
Fronzel wrote:
He doesn't defeat his giant-robot rival or even gain his respect (a shonen fighting convention that Gundam series are often thick with) and gets ditched by his love interest until she's unwillingly set away by the other guy.


Kou does get Gato's respect. Did you miss their brief exchange after GP01 and GP02 got totaled and they were getting out of their suits?

Fronzel wrote:
This isn't explained in the show but there only thing in the Great Plains is farms so I have to imagine they were deliberately trying to cause starvation on Earth.


Uh, no... Delaz and Gato's plan was not to try to starve completely unrelated civilians... I really have no idea what gave you the opinion that either of them were that cruel. They just wanted to get back at the Federation. The point of dropping it there was because it was nothing but farmland with nobody around.
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kgw



Joined: 22 Jul 2004
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2017 9:04 am Reply with quote
I liked 0083 a lot. But since I watched just the movie, I missed some of the characters' development.

Still, 0083's Zeon characters are like Area 88's Mick (the American pilot who fought in Vietnam). They miss the war when in peace. Gato & Delaz spent 3 years yearning for a glorious last fight,spoiler[ until they finally got it].

spoiler[(but seriously, how many Zeon remnants were in Earth?. We see them in every series, until Unicorn.)]

SilverTalon01 wrote:
Uh, no... Delaz and Gato's plan was not to try to starve completely unrelated civilians... I really have no idea what gave you the opinion that either of them were that cruel. They just wanted to get back at the Federation. The point of dropping it there was because it was nothing but farmland with nobody around.

Uh, if memory serves me well, spoiler[they never explained why they were changing the colony's course after crashing the Solar Ray].
Also, a fanfic in old Protoculture Addicts' magazine told the story about the "starving to death" idea. As a way to solve some plot holes, I think.

And after all, hey, it is a merit in UC Gundam NOT placing a story in the One Year War.
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SilverTalon01



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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2017 12:28 pm Reply with quote
Like you said though, this was about having a glorious last fight and getting back at the federation for their humiliating retreat at A Baoa Qu.

The starvation idea is completely inconsistent. Absolutely nothing suggests Delaz or Gato are the type to mass murder civilians for revenge. When Nina is freaking out thinking the colony is going to drop and kill a lot of people at Jaburo, Gato tells her that she doesn't understand the plan at all and the colony wouldn't be dropped on Jaburo to calm her down. Why would Gato do that if the actual plan was to murder civilians? Nina would obviously be at least equally upset about that if not more so.

Now what they did do was greatly destabilize the federation causing it to splinter into factions, and this does ultimately lead towards the eventual downfall of the federation. Remember this came out in the 90s even if it takes place in the time line between First and Zeta. Fans knew the final result of the federation when they were seeing this for the first time.
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Fronzel



Joined: 11 Sep 2003
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2017 1:03 pm Reply with quote
SilverTalon01 wrote:
Fronzel wrote:
This isn't explained in the show but there only thing in the Great Plains is farms so I have to imagine they were deliberately trying to cause starvation on Earth.


Uh, no... Delaz and Gato's plan was not to try to starve completely unrelated civilians... I really have no idea what gave you the opinion that either of them were that cruel. They just wanted to get back at the Federation. The point of dropping it there was because it was nothing but farmland with nobody around.

What are you suggesting? That they threw an impact bomb at Earth just to prove that they could? That makes them quite the bunch of psychopaths if the hundreds of deaths which accompanied the operation (including that engineer and his crew) was all just to count coup. But the show itself doesn't peep a word about why they dropped the colony there. It's nearly the very last thing that this is revealed, after all.

Also, dropping a bomb on farmland will wreck it so it would still cause starvation if the damage is great enough. Maybe blasting a city-sized chunk out of the Great Plains wouldn't actually do that much harm, though. I didn't do any math or consider things like dust clouds or anything.
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SilverTalon01



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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2017 2:28 pm Reply with quote
Fronzel wrote:
What are you suggesting? That they threw an impact bomb at Earth just to prove that they could? That makes them quite the bunch of psychopaths if the hundreds of deaths which accompanied the operation (including that engineer and his crew) was all just to count coup. But the show itself doesn't peep a word about why they dropped the colony there. It's nearly the very last thing that this is revealed, after all.


It doesn't need to flat out tell you why. The entire thing went according to plan, and we see the result which is a greatly destabilized federation which paves the way for the Axis fleet to come back under Haman to [temporarily] take control. A series doesn't need a massive exposition dump. Showing is largely superior to telling in a visual medium. That is what they did here.

Fronzel wrote:
Also, dropping a bomb on farmland will wreck it so it would still cause starvation if the damage is great enough. Maybe blasting a city-sized chunk out of the Great Plains wouldn't actually do that much harm, though. I didn't do any math or consider things like dust clouds or anything.


It would if they had no other sources of food. Like you said, we're talking an amount of land the size of a city which is nothing. You can see the area that was hit a year later when Kou gets released, and they're growing stuff right up to the craters. Granted there are a couple of craters, they are all actually smaller than the military base next to them so we aren't talking about a huge amount of land. You want to talk about dropping it for stupid reasons... Gato's nuke would have caused far more damage to the farmland than the colony did.

You also realize that we have more farmland than we need right? The government will actually pay farmers to not grow anything on some of their land in an attempt to hold the supply in check with the demand. The OYW killed off a significant portion of the population so there should be quite a bit less people than we have currently.
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WeskerGriff



Joined: 29 Jan 2013
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2017 3:14 pm Reply with quote
Reading some of the comments in the thread here, it seems people are slightly confused on why the colony was dropped on the North American granary. Operation Stardust in the final stages had two main objectives.

One was to inspire "the next generation of Zeon". Pretty much everyone in the Delaz Fleet knew they weren't making it out alive and even if Stardust was successful, they could never beat the Federation alone. They knew Axis was out there but didn't have the strength at the time to beat the Federation. Delaz had hope that through Stardust, spacenoids would be inspired to resist the Federation. Hence why the Federation after Stardust suppressed a lot of information about it, and deleted a lot of information regarding the GP series.

The second part was aimed at "starving out" Earth. Basically put the power back into the colonies' hands and tip the scales of power in their favorite. The colonies produce A LOT of food, and with a massive colony landing and destroying the main food supply for the Federation, the Federation would in turn become a lot more depended on the colonies for resources and food. One of the cool things about Unicorn was that this plot point was incorporated into Full Frontal's Side Co-Prosperity Sphere, as he notes how the Federation can no longer feed itself and depends on the colonies to survive. This was the main goal of Operation Stardust, and it succeeded.
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