Reviewby Darius Washington
Mobile Suit Gundam
"A good story is a good story, no matter when it's told..."
Last year, Bandai America launced its sales site Anime Village.com to promote their products in the U.S. One of those products is the 20th anniversary release of the original Mobile Suit Gundam trilogy as a box set.
The trilogy tells the story of Amuro Ray, an inexperienced newtype (ESP user) who come across an advanced battle mech while his colony is attacked by a force from the Zeons, led by "The Red Comet" Char Aznable. They duel many times over the series while dealing with personal issues. Amuro is trying to come to terms with the responsibilities of being a man (he's only 15), while Char is out to kill the family of Degin Zabi, the man who murdered his father and made himself leader of the Zeons to declare war on Earth. At the same time Char is attempting to reunite with his sister Sayla Mass, who is fighting alongside Amuro and Earth's military forces. The war that ensues ties Amuro and Char together for many years (and a couple sequels) to come.
Originally a novel written by Yoshiyuki Tomino (Brain Powered, Aura Battler Dunbine), the 43 episode series is decently directed and condensed into three films. The animation is (obviously) dated, but the fight scenes are still cool to watch, as are the character designs of Yoshikazu "Yas" Yasuhiko (Venus Wars, Dirty Pair: Project Eden). The music ranges from typical action-style BGM to whimsical 70's style ballads. The subtitling is nice and clear while the translators keep much of the orignial material and attitudes intact and don't attempt to imprint stupid Amrican names on the characters. (Joe Saber, ugggh!)
For those who maintain that only Gundam stories produced in this decade like 0083 or Wing would be worth watching, it might be fun to go back and look at the characters who've inspired ones from today. How does Amuro compare to Kou or Heero? Is Char Aznable as charasmatic as Anavel Gato or Lt. Zechs? Why did they hate each other so much in the sequel film "Char's Counterattack"? Seeing as how it's three 2.5 hour films for $60, you can afford to find out.
Overall (sub) : A
+ Great story, nostalgia value
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