Aina Sahalin: The Vagina of Peace

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Hello, I'm Aina Sahalin. I'm ghostlightning's #1 crush in the Gundam Franchise.

Happy Valentine’s Day! It’s a day to remember love! However, we won’t be doing a Macross post today because I want to share with you a great moment in animation. This is from Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team; one of my favorite installments of the franchise. One of the remarkable things about this show is the Capulets vs. Montagues kind of love story between a young commander in the Federation forces and an experimental mobile armor pilot from Zeon.

What makes the love story remarkable, among a number of reasons, is the sudden and utter turnaround in attitude by the Federation commander Shiro Amada after a sexual encounter with his paramour in the snowy mountains.

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Aina is a beautiful work of character design.

Shiro was present at his homeland, Side 2, during the initial Zeon G3 poison gas attacks on the colonies in the first weeks of the One Year War, witnessing all of the fellow colony inhabitants die horribly around him, Shiro saved himself only because he was lucky enough to wear a sealed space suit. Witnessing this wanton civilian death filled Shiro with a deep hatred for the Zeon, and everything they stood for.

shiro-hates-the-zeon

I was actually surprised, to be quite honest, of this declaration of hatred. In episode one he showed remarkable compassion to a Zeon pilot he engaged in space.

Despite this hatred, I never saw Shiro display any actual bloodlust. I saw in him an eagerness to prove himself as a leader to the more experienced members of the 08th MS Team, which led to several reckless moves. But that is all, I never got the impression that he is a hateful or bitter victim of war.

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Again, it felt convenient that Shiro was especially hard-line anti-Zeon in this episode. Nonetheless, I accept that he does carry some bitterness after surviving the Zeon gas attack in his colony.

The pilot Shiro showed much compassion for in the first episode is Aina Sahalin herself, who was especially touched by his behavior. She too, was apparently led to think that the only good Feddie was a dead one.

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Oh Shiro! They were freezing up in the mountains and his hands were showing symptoms of frostbite. Aina told him he needed to warm them, so Shiro used the Gundam's beam saber to make an onsen in the mountains.

For whatever reason, Aina left Shiro a treasured keepsake – a pocket watch that’s some kind of heirloom of the Sahalin. This encounter (Shiro actually brought down Aina’s mobile armor, though not without critically damaging his Gundam) allowed him to return it.

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The pocket watch had a photo of Aina and Gineas Sahalin (her brother). Shiro had thought he was her boyfriend.

At first I thought this relationship was going to be a tad forced, but given the events of the first episode it felt inevitable. So I just kicked back and enjoyed the romance. It was quite romantic up in the mountains.

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I somehow always found Zeon girls hotter.

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hmhmhm

And Aina happens to be the hottest.

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You know you want to, Feddie.

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He really tried not to look.

They actually started talking, getting to know about each other while in the hot water. To his credit, Shiro did his best to listen – even though he probably didn’t understand much about Gineas and what he and Aina did in their work on the ground. And I thought nothing more would come out of this romantic interlude, until…

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You're going to make him blind, Aina!

Okay, I really thought to myself: Oh my, this is Gundam! (I had seen a naked Frau Bow taking a shower in the orignal series but that’s it)

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It's hard not to imagine the siscon subtext in the show, to be quite honest.

And then the mist covers everything. The evils of war are pushed aside for the moment, to be confronted seriously later.

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How's your hand Shiro?

And then, Aina’s rescuers arrive – to be met by the 08th MS Team search party. A battle inevitably ensues, and both Shiro and Aina are confronted by how fleeting their moment truly is.

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War really sucks right now.

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*love*

And then the changes in Shiro begin to manifest.

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Of course you're not going to take that on your back, commander.

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mmhm

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And there you have it: a fully-formed pacifist.

Shiro would spend the rest of his career preventing further hostilities between the Federation and the Zeon, something his own team and his superiors get quite disturbed about. But yes, the power of love and Aina really turned this man (yes, he is. He attacked a Zaku II Prototype with a Ball)  into a daring pacifist. If you’ve never seen a Gundam show before, The 08th MS Team isn’t a bad show to start with at all. And if you’re a Gundam fan and you haven’t seen this, you simply must see it. I may seem to make light of it in this post, but this OVA is very very good.

Haven’t seen any Gundam at all? Don’t know where to start? Find your Gateway Gundam!

About ghostlightning

I entered the anime blogging sphere as a lurker around Spring 2008. We Remember Love is my first anime blog. Click here if this is your first time to visit WRL.
This entry was posted in fanboy, Gundam, moments in anime, Valentine's Day and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

23 Responses to Aina Sahalin: The Vagina of Peace

  1. This was the show that turned me into an anime fan. Props ghostlightning for talking about this great series.

  2. HOLY SHIT THAT CHICK IS FUCKING AMAZING – I just 100% increased my desire to watch this show. That is probably the hottest Gundam character indeed. It’s a rainstorm down there.

  3. schneider says:

    Shiro helping Aina in the first place was perfectly justified! She’s a beautiful woman, all healthy males are supposed to have their bone-deep hostilities melt away at the sight of her!

    Not. Let’s just say I’m not a fan of the romance aspect in 08th. But it did make THE FIGHT work. Poor Norris.

    >I somehow always found Zeon girls hotter.

    CRUSH THE ZEEKS WITH YOUR MIND

    Also, Noel Anderson > all Zeon girls

  4. ghostlightning says:

    @ ilikewhiterice

    I like rice too! There are many rice dishes, but steamed is still the best and brings out the best in food.

    The 08th MS Team used to have the grittiest, realest, and most satisfying robot action in the Gundam franchise (at least within the Earth’s atmosphere). No longer, the honor now belongs to MS Igloo 2. Go watch it.

    @ digiboy

    Don’t listen to Schneider. Aina is where it’s at. Also, she’s a really good person without being a wimp at all. She has backbone and guts. Can’t go wrong with this girl.

    @ schneider

    I never claimed it’s unjustified. The remarkable thing about their encounter is how Shiro did a 180 and turned completely pacifist. Releena and Marina should’ve taken notes.

    AWAY WITH YOUR NEWTYPE BALDERDASH.

  5. Action Bastard says:

    So he’s guilty of fraternizing with the enemy, desertion and possibly even treason.

    Good going, there, Romeo. All capital offenses, he’s lucky he didn’t get the chair.

  6. ‘[C]ompletely’ pacifist? I’ll grant that this episode marks a sea-change in his attitude, but he still pilots a MS. His battle with Norris is hardly non-violent!

    Other than that very minor quibble, nice post – good work on the captions especially.

  7. ghostlightning says:

    @ Action Bastard

    Well, the Feddies tried to kill him didn’t they? And there’s Miller’s Report that I haven’t seen yet that should cover the accusations you deem him guilty for.

    @ The Animanachronism

    Hmm, perhaps he’s on leaning more towards Celestial Being on the Sliding Scale of Anti-War Sentiment. Thanks for pointing it out. ^_^

  8. Action Bastard says:

    @ Ghostlightening

    Yeah, they did kind of put him on a suicide mission as punishment. He and Aina survived and went on to copy the God Gundam by ramming the Ez8′s hand through the Apsalus’s cockpit while screaming really loud. As for the conclusion, he and Aina ran off to the mountains. You see them briefly at the end of the wrap-up episode. Aina is pregnant and Shiro had apparently lost a leg in that final battle.

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  10. MS Igloo, you got it. I wasn’t too interested when i first heard about it but definitely going to look into it now, thanks.

  11. rollchan says:

    dang, I haven’t watched 08th MS-Team yet.

    maybe I should download it. I’m still stuck, rewatching Gundam SEED. haha.

    nice title for a post. Vagina of PEACE. :)

  12. Crusader says:

    I find your diction offensive I hope Norris guts you for being so disrespectful to Aina-sama. :P

    Still I loved her voice, who would have thought that Aina would have a successor such as Grace O’Connor…

  13. ghostlightning says:

    @ ilikewhiterice

    I find MS Igloo 2 superior to the first OVA series, by far.

    @ rollchan

    Hurry up and watch it.

    @ Crusader

    It wouldn’t be dishonor to be gutted by the likes of him, but there’s nothing inherently disrespectful with the latin word vagina. To use english would hardly be euphemistic, I think it would be far worse.

    I was counting on you to point out that particular seiyuu connection. Good job!

  14. rollchan says:

    @ghostlightning

    ever watched Zeta Gundam? also the movie versions? :D

  15. ghostlightning says:

    @ rollchan

    I’ve seen the movie version and will watch the TV series sooner than later. Judging by the movie, I feel that Zeta is overrated, but my recent experience of re-watching Stardust Memory which is turning to be a more entertaining and fulfilling experience than my first full viewing does make me want to watch the Zeta TV series.

  16. rollchan says:

    @ghostlightning

    “I feel that Zeta is overrated”

    what? haha. anyhow, you should watch the TV version. as long as you don’t mind legacy animation drawings. :D

    hey man, make a review of Crest of the Stars & Banner of the Stars. :D

  17. ghostlightning says:

    @ rollchan

    I don’t mind fugly old animation, so I’m keen on watching Zeta.

    Check our archives for my ‘Lafiel’ post. I don’t do reviews per se, but I’m open to writing about the Stars franchise once I figure out a good angle.

  18. rollchan says:

    @ghostlightning

    “I don’t mind fugly old animation”

    right. as long as the story is good and interesting. :)

    “I don’t do reviews per se”

    :((

    “but I’m open to writing about the Stars franchise”

    when? ok, I’ll wait for that. I’m excited about your thoughts on the whole series.

  19. Ar says:

    While I understand everyone has their own opinion, I must say that the only thing Aina did for me was piss me off and make me glad when her brother shot her. She started off well enough, but once the second director took over she quickly turning into a whiny, pathetic Damsel in Distress who stole screentime from other characters so she could try to garner sympathy from the viewer. Honestly, I feel way more sympathy for her brother (there’s no way something fucked up did not happen to him in his youth) than I do for her.

    [/3AM rambling]

    • ghostlightning says:

      No problem, though I don’t see how standing up to get sniped at, in front of the gathered Federation forces counts really as damseling in distress.

      Gineas is a loser, who is caught in the romance of many Zeeks in creating silver bullet super weapons. Remember, ONCE THE BIG ZAM IS MASS PRODUCED…

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  22. banagherlinks says:

    I need to get my hands on a copy of that. Can anyone here give me some link where to download? =P

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