Gundam: Undeserving Figures of Hate

I won’t type much here because I’ve already posted earlier. Basically, I’m rather irritated by the baseless hatred many worldwide have of popular series like Gundam. I’m using this as an example because of Stargazer.

It’s cool to say, "Gundam sucks." It’s cool to say "Gundam sucks, I prefer [insert non-mainstream anime]." But question deeper why they think that way and they come up with all sorts of silly reasons which you can tell are made up. They haven’t even watched ANY (maybe except Seed and D which are not considered real ones) yet. Probably surfed some forums, picked up some hear say and noticed the general popularity of the Bandai franchise and decide to go all "underground". This is similar to how Haruhi haters surfaced. It’s just "cool" to be a voice of dissent.

I’m not a hardcore Gundam fan. I have however watched most of the Gundam series and I do know almost ALL the mecha, thanks to my old plamo hobby. I can safely say that 08th MS Team ranks possibly alongside Full Metal Panic as one of the best mecha series so far. And yes in my opinion, it’s better than Evangelion (which wasn’t bad but just not as good). Ok so besides good old 08th and perhaps Igloo, the others aren’t that great. But neither are they worth hating, besides Seed Destiny of course, which destroyed the Seed line. It’s just a matter of "Is it for you?" If no, then move along now.

Btw personally I think being an anime fan does require some degree of Gundam knowledge. It’s like you can’t say you’re a true nerd if you have never heard of Obiwan. For example, if you watch Keroro, you’ll miss half the fun when you don’t know Gundam. Yakitate Japan did some Gundam parodies too.

The original, MSG, was pioneering. You don’t flame pioneers. It’s like saying "WOah man this Sailormoon is gay! Nanoha owns it!". Btw the mangaka of Sailormoon is the wife of the Hunter x Hunter and Yu Yu Hakusho mangaka.

Anyway, Stargazer goes back to the 08th and Igloo style, with lots of death, destruction and grunt units. The fact that a GiNN was the most powerful fighting unit in that episode and like it took tens of tanks to take down utilising teamwork and self-sacrifice is realistic. It reminds me of WW2 battles, where taking out a Panzer was a great deal for the puny Shermans. The full impact of Junius seveN, with all its gore, death, destruction and despair, was shown in a deservingly raw and tragic manner. In Destiny (I spit and rinse my mouth at the mere mention), it was glossed over with still frames and Kira striking poses.

So yeah, Stargazer was great. But many jump to the conclusion that it’s just a merchandise vehicle (which it is) and brand it the Devil’s Spawn. That is pure bias.

Another thing is people complaining they don’t like the show because they don’t understand the terms. It’s foolish to barge into a 16 minute OVA of a 100 episode "saga" and demand to understand all the lingo used. It’s like watching the "Birth" OVA of the Stars trilogy and complaining about why the people have blue hair and elfin ears.

Hey I sound like Rainy.


23 Responses to “Gundam: Undeserving Figures of Hate”  

  1. 1 Kozumura

    Actually, I hated Stargazer. Sure, that Ginn was beastly, but the atmosphere surrounding the episode was just ugh.. hopefully, we’ll finally see Strike Noir, verde Buster, etc in action next ep. And I swear to god if I see even a glimpse of Kira Yamato, hell is raised.

    Of course, 8th MS team is by far one of the best Gundam series out there. Lesser known sidestories always get me.(Of course, my favorite will always be ZZ) In fact, I consider myself a full blown Gundam fan. I love Gundam with a passion and I build gunpla, but seriously, I just think Sunrise has to stop beating a dead cow. 3 fifteen minute episodes aren’t going to that helpful.

    Stop with the AUs and do some more UCs.

  2. 2 Alvin

    For me … I still feel tat the new stuffs cannot be comparable to the ZZ and 08th MS team that made the series famous

  3. 3 tj_han

    WATTT?? If Z, I can still understand. But ZZ is possibly the worst Gundam besides Destiny.

    I think you mean Z right?? right?? Anyway I liked F91 too but only for the mecha.

    Kozu: Actually I think the atmosphere was pretty good. As for the length, it’s alright too. They don’t want to make anymore UC cos it’s not going to be as popular as CE for the simple reason that the major forces (teenagers) don’t know UC.

  4. 4 T_T|||

    Alvin >> And I thought Wing was the one that made Gundam series famous. LOL. At least that was my first Gundam anime.

    tjhan >> Somehow when I stated similar views(regarding Haruhi) I sounded dumb but when you blog about it, you sound intelligent. Maybe I should start blogging in English. Or not.

  5. 5 shiachan

    lolz my $0.02 is , as long as u like it its ok, some people liked Gseed and all its gh3yness, others prefer Zeta for its angst, others like how fragile life is like 08th ms team, others in is Super robot cheese like G gundam , personally i like tomino’s works, with all the angst , dying people everywhere, ala zeta. where nearly everyone except camille dies. this is how war should be like, people dying suddenly. not like WTFOMFGBBQ akatsuki gundam, pwning everything in sight -.-.

    We need More UC more Tomino! :D

  6. 6 Tsubaki

    I’m one of those that hate gundam without understanding why.
    And yet I keep ranting about how people condemn zegapain without watching it.
    the irony.

  7. 7 jpmeyer

    Yeah seriously, are you all sure that you don’t mean Z and not ZZ? ZZ was so bad that the new Z movie trilogy rewrote the ending of Z in order to retcon out ZZ.

  8. 8 IvanHoeHo

    Hey, I have biases towards stargazer only because it’s got the word SEED in it.

    Also, I think that War in the Pocket and AoZ (not an anime yet, though) is not getting the love it deserves.

  9. 9 Kenny Liu

    I thought the first part of Stargazer was good. They did a good job showing us what happened on earth when Junius Seven fell.

  10. 10 air!

    As a kid, I liked Macross than the Gundam series, so tj_han mentioned anime fans should have some kind of Gundam knowledge, I feel the same way for Macross.

    T_T|||:
    I think Cartoon Network caused Wing (and pretty much Gundam in general) to gain mainstream attention in the U.S. I don’t think Pioneer released any licensed VHS/DVD/toys, etc. until Wing completely finished airing.
    As far as subbers, they knew that there were fans out there who wanted the U.C. timeline Gundam series and those were definitely available in fansub form.

  11. 11 tj_han

    Yeah everyone should know at least what Macross and Valkyies are. Basically, being an anime fan can be more enriching if people’ll just bother to do a wee bit of research.

  12. 12 kokanaden

    Who cares about what others say? You like what you like, simple as that. Who is to critisize you for liking FYGs anyway? Its your preference, your life, so those idiot who blindly critisize should just shut up and watch tammy.3gp

  13. 13 T_T|||

    kokanaden I just realised you’ve levelled up to be a better nonsensical troller than me. Good job. I shall now retire.

  14. 14 Gary Ee

    I have great respect for the elder Gundam series that were true visionaries during their time. For me Mobile Suit Gundam ranks alongside Macross and Space Battleship Yamato as the kind of anime that got me interested in sci-fi in the first place and which helped define their genre.

    However…..

    Aside from those who think its “cool” to go against the establishment, part of the “Hate Gundam Wave” may come from some of the oldsters looking at GSD or even Wing and screaming in sheer horror (like me) at what they did to our old favourites. It took Macross Zero to restore my faith in the Macross franchise after Macross 7 for example. For some of us, its part of our defining years when we grew up and we expect it to bring back the same emotions as back then. This is an utterly unrealistic view of the world; a continuing series must evolve. It cannot remain frozen in time and replay itself endlessly. However emotions and nostalgia are hardly rational.

    Another part is the existence of crud like GSD and Gundam G. The SHINY FINGER (aka God Finger) traumatized me almost as much as the idiotic windmill Gundam (which made it to the later rounds by pretending to be, well, a windmill >_

  15. 15 tj_han

    I’ve been wondering. How old are you Gary? You are the most old-school commentor here by a large margin lol. Even I couldn’t get half of your quiz questions right.

    I’m actually in the Wing generation, being born in 86 and all, so my first Gundam was Wing. However I only started liking the franchise when I watched Seed. That was when all the oldies started telling me that Seed sucked. I took their advice constructively and thus came across 08th MS team and others which they (namely the Nakamoto store regulars) all raved about.

    If you compared Seed to Z, I dont think Seed fares too badly other than in unrealistic mecha pwnage. But Destiny is a nightmare. Of course, 08th is still unbeatable up till now and thanks to that Ez-8 still is my favourite Gundam. Followed closely by F91 for some weird unknown reason.

  16. 16 Gary Ee

    Well I’m not really that much older than you, I was born in ‘81. However I had an uncle who worked in the States and brought back fansubs and fandubs (ironically some of them were better than later, professionally made, dubs) of anime so I got into anime pretty young. When other kids at the time were watching He-Man and Mask, I was watching Science Team Gatchaman (which I knew as Battle of the Planets), Cutey Honey (before there was the Shin and Re: versions) and Space Battleship Yamato. Ah those were the days…. I must have started when I was about 7-8 years old when I was in primary school.

    One fond memory was that my very first VCD was Akira followed by the original Bubblegum Crisis VCDs. Remembering what anime used to cost in those days makes me so grateful that we can buy most good series now for a fraction of the cost, DVD or VCD. The Kimagure Orange Road OAVs cost me $120 back in 1994! And it was just 12 eps….. ~_~

  17. 17 Michael

    As usual I will gladly join in on the GSD-bashing-bandwagon. It’s horrible, it’s a disgrace, it’s pathetic, it’s nothing but an appeal to emotion every episode. I could go on. Everyone who’s watched the series should know exactly what I’m talking about.

    As for “bashing” the original Gundam series, I’d say that there is a difference between constructive criticism (of which there is much to be said, concerning Tomino’s directing style - not so up to par with the newer generation of directors now, as displayed in Garzey’s Wing and Brain Powered) and the pointless, “I want to be cool by saying that I hate Gundam.” I prefer to stick to the former. Although I am quite the fan of the Gundam franchise, I would not say that I am a fan of Tomino. In fact, the Gundam Origin manga (published by Viz Media in the US) is a much needed breath of fresh air into the original story that gives it the modernization that the story needs (both in terms of art and plot direction). Tomino’s story to some extent reaches across the generational gap, but I’d say that Macross does a better job as a standalone piece (no taking into account the follow-up stories), both in terms of animation and thematic appeal. Gundam lacked the focus of Macross, and while this was one of its strengths, it is also a weakness that I feel keeps it from being at the top of my all-time-greats list.

    As for the comments on Zegapain, I love that show. I did a post on it a little while ago, referring to it as “style over substance.” I still think that to some extent it’s Sunrise trying to milk yet another mecha franchise, but overall I love the pacing of the story, and the depth of the characters. In fact, I will probably be doing another post soon retracting my earlier statements. It’s surprising to me that no matter how many mecha shows come out, there always happens to be one that really captures my imagination and inspires me to continue watching the battles of giant robots.

  18. 18 helspectre

    tj, as you probably know, i hate GSD and Stargazer… but I like Seed. What i dislike isn’t the storyline, but the very very very reused plotlines.. its gone stale. Seed was great till the end, but when destiny started screwing up i knew it was the end of my love for the remaining sequels to come.

    Try talking to a whole bunch of crazy gundam fans who claim to be anime fans cuz they watched gundam. Maybe that contributes to my hate too. hmm.

  19. 19 jammi

    i honestly love gundam, especially those along the “official” and “main” story line. which is pretty rare for a girl, since most of us think gundam wing is the alpha and omega of all mecha ;) but my favorite side story was gundam 8th MS Team, and even if my modelling skills suck, i had to buy a gouf custom! i’m a proud mommy of a few mecha models, i’m in love with zakus and soldier gms.

    at any rate, i understand your point. there are a lot of people subconsciously thinking they reap a multitude of “cool points” by disliking whatever’s popular. they’re their own herd, following in the opposite direction. it’s inevitable, but to trample over the legend that is gundam…well, that’s just pure ignorance on their part.

    i can still rewatch the original MSG, no matter how aged it’s gotten. it’s still got amazing things to say, and Char honestly kicks a thousand shades of ass in that one.

  20. 20 Kozumura

    Oh shit I didn’t see it that I accidently typed 2 Z’s. You need an edit button! D: I meant Zeta.

    Of course, it’s nice that Sunrise did Z movies(Even if they were just remakes with some alternate stuff), at least I get to look at Amuro Ray(Even Camille, even though I hate the guy) instead of Kira Yamato.

    I spend an unhealthy amout of hours playing Mecha Video games anyway. ._.

    Even if Sunrise doesn’t want to do anymore UCs, at least do something besides CE. (I mean, even stuff like G Gundam was tolerable to me.)

  21. 21 DrmChsr0

    I think Fukuda should be fired. He’s no story writer, he’s a goddamn corporate whore.

    08th MS Team rocked, What little I saw of War in the Pocket rocked, Wing was overly gay, SEED was bleh, and GSD made my “OMG THIS IS SHIT” sensor tingle. After one episode. Episode 19, to be precise.

    One thing about storytelling is, YOU DON’T REVEAL THE MOTIVATION BEHIND THE STORY BEFORE THE END. And of course I’ve head the news about Fukuda basically giving up writing the story. Because his wife wanted to fuck up the franchise.

    Sunrise had better release 90 minutes of yaoi for CE, or I’ll swear off Gundam for a very long time.

  22. 22 Bridge Bunny

    IMHO Sunrise has just lost it’s sense of direction with what to do with it’s Gundam franchise, not withstanding pressure from parent company Bandai.

  23. 23 Tess

    That’s amusing. I’m not a Gundam fan, though I will say I don’t like Gundam Seed or GSD. I’ve only watched a little of GS though, I just couldn’t continue. I’d only say I hated a series if I got myself to watch the whole thing, since -most- series have something good about them. The only Gundam series I liked was 08th MS team, I really need to get around to watching it again sometime. I did enjoy Gundam Wing sometimes, but only SOMETIMES. Lots of the characters scared me… not to mention the whole boy band image it had.

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