Before I Knew it, I Became a Gundam Fanboy

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In this post I reflect on some stardust memories. I was a mecha fan before I was an anime fan (if that’s even possible), but I’ve only become a fan of Gundam sometime after I started writing here in October of last year. It doesn’t mean that I love Macross less, there’s just more mecha anime to love.

When I started this blog, I initially wanted it to be about anime in general. Mechafetish gave me the title ‘We Remember Love’ and I saw it encompassing enough for all the anime that influenced me, if not everything I’ve seen. My monstrous devotion to Macross got the better of me and I pretty much became a supporter of any and all Macross propaganda. At that time, I’ve seen a few Gundam shows and was watching Gundam 00, skeptically. But I so very wanted to get into Gundam, I was fascinated by the range of love, hate, intelligence, and idiocy within the fandom. We Macross fans are a simple and happy lot, I think (though recent forum activity brought to my attention shows how any fandom can have hateful and unintelligent representatives). The Gundam fans are far more interesting.

I didn’t say better. In this post some of my remarks may seem disparaging but I mean not to disparage or make fun of anyone here. I’m counting myself as one of the fans, so anything I say about the fandom I liberally take on myself. Gundam fans routinely rage, hate, and troll at each other. There’s always someone who gets real upset about something in a particular episode or series. I have my own litany of discontent for Gundam 00.

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I had said in the beginning that I was tsundere for Gundam. The extent of my feelings for the franchise then:

I also feel that I’m watching Gundam the way I would read required authors back at university. I never read Dickens. I’m sure he’s great and all but I never went after him the same way I did Umberto Eco or Fyodor Dostoevsky. I’m watching Gundam because I feel that it is important as a mecha anime fan, the same way one can’t really earn a degree in English without studying Shakespeare (I was lucky Dickens was not required reading).

…or Tolkien, who I wrote my undergraduate thesis on. Anyway, I really felt that the franchise is nowhere as good to merit the fanaticism it inspired. Reading the reviews that I had access to at the time, Gundam shows do get a lot of acclaim. But I just didn’t get it.

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[Mechafetish]  showed me Turn A Gundam – so highly regarded, with a Kanno Yoko score to boot! How can I go wrong?

After 9 episodes, I had enough. It didn’t seem any more real robot than SDF Macross. It felt every bit as super robot – with the robot doing nothing super. It was ugly with that upturned mustache and the most dramatic thing it did at that point was to save a cow. A COW!

I was not impressed at all. I wanted those 4 hours or so of my life back.

I had since changed my mind about the show, and that cow did give me an important lesson. I quoted the above excerpt from my post to illustrate what I think is an important point:

We will not like some anime because we are not ready for it.

It doesn’t matter whether the show in particular is widely regarded, and is a 10 on many people’s scales. I don’t care if the anime is Aria itself. I am not always in the best place, the best time in my life, the best context to be in, to appreciate an anime. Looking at the above example, I had created for myself an idea of what real robots shows should be like. And I expected all Universal Century (continuity) Gundam shows, and the best-regarded Gundam shows to conform to my idea of what a real robot show should be like. Iknight responds,

What Kairu said.

I think you’ve more or less said what needs to be pointed out yourself: the majority of the UC isn’t ‘grit and metal’ like some of its sidestories are. (*cough* cf. VOTOMS, some of the time *cough*) And really there’s no great obligation on fans to like the whole franchise.

And I do agree that there’s no obligation to like the whole franchise – as in like every series in it, but that’s different from liking the franchise as a whole.

Some of the shows I dropped include Eureka 7 and Last Exile. These are both well-regarded shows. I don’t think that they’re bad, but I did not make a connection with them and I didn’t feel compelled to complete them. There will be shows that are recommended to me that I won’t appreciate immediately. I hesitate to give fixed evaluations in part because I know I can change my mind later on, after subsequent viewings.

So it is with Gundam. I’ve tried watching Gundam shows before and I’ve dropped them all: the original series, ZZ Gundam, Mobile Report Wing Gundam, Victory Gundam, the aformentioned Turn A Gundam, and 0083: Stardust Memory. Of these shows, I’ve re-watched Stardust Memory and am re-watching Turn A. The experience is much different and far more satisfying. Did the shows change in any way? No. I did.

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At present, these are the shows I completed:

While I am currently watching:

  • Gundam 00 (s2) (good and bad together, but worth watching)
  • Mobile Fighter G Gundam (what a great ride so far, and it keeps getting better)
  • Turn A Gundam (gems inside, but takes getting used to)
  • MS Igloo 2 (awesome)

I can’t place it precisely, but something turned in me. I was really getting into Gundam more and more. It’s a late marker, but a definitive one: I finished watching the 08th MS Team a week after my birthday, and having done so I launched a campaign to promote Gundam to a fine Macross fan. I think I did a fair job, utilizing tools such as Finding Your Gateway Gundam, and providing a concise background to the UC as can be done via instant messenger.

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At present, she’s enjoying her potential gateway experience. I’m confident since I think the 08th MS Team deserves its reputation. I’m waiting to see if she’ll agree with me about the epilogue (I liked it, it seems a lot of  people didn’t; here’s one).

Looking and reflecting on that list, I really think that the experience of Gundam is greater than the sum of all the hours spent watching. It’s the interaction with the fans that does it for me. People really get a rise out of this metaverse, and of course, the pretty robots. Schneider and I are alike in this, though his Gundam-Fu is far more advanced than my own. When I watch a good show, let’s say Ghibli’s Mononoke Hime. I’m totally absorbed, and am very very impressed. After the show, I don’t have a context to relate my experience to – given that Nausicaa, Laputa are similar and awesome Ghibli films, they don’t exist in the same world.

I thoroughly enjoyed Code Geass, but after 50 episodes I don’t feel that there’s a larger world for it to relate to. It’s not the case with Macross Frontier, and certainly not the case with Gundam 00. Both franchises allow us to take the events in a particular member anime and reference the whole metaverse. This is why I like the Universal Century so much, and feel so cheated by Char’s Counterattack. The sweep of the continuity is so romantic to me. Amuro, Bright, and most especially Char are gigantic characters. I enjoyed watching the compilation movies even if to just look at the footprints they left on anime itself. I don’t say this to disparage alternate continuities like SEED and 00. There’s something about the root text, akin to what I felt when I read the Silmarillion after reading the Lord of the Rings books. It was obvious to me what work I’d choose for my undergraduate thesis.

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It’s amazing how many stories a one year war can yield. Honestly I dearly wish for side stories in the UC to be set in other contexts, particularly during the time of Zeta Gundam. Stardust Memory was a step in the right direction, I wish they’d make more. 2009 marks the year of Gundam’s 30th anniversary. Old franchise is old. What a great year for me to hit my stride as a fan of Gundam! We Remember Love will be doing something pretty special to commemorate this event. Here’s to the future!

Some acknowledgements: with Mechafetish aside being the primary Gundam, and anime pimp in my life, the following bloggers influenced me greatly in my ‘transformation’: Kaioshin Sama, Iknight, Crusader, and OGT (links are to posts they wrote with the ‘Gundam’ tag, except for Crusader’s which is a comprehensive listing). Kaioshin really makes time and effort to ‘educate’ me into his particular taste for Gundam, which involves OPs and EDs of the classic shows. I really appreciate this.

I think they fit me now

I think they fit me now

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 and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

49 Responses to Before I Knew it, I Became a Gundam Fanboy

  1. Funeral says:

    You have completely won me over now! Tolkien is my favorite author hands down and that’s awesome you did a thesis on him. Definitely the most influential fantasy author.

    As for Gundam, I know where you’re coming from with this because I sort of feel the same way about this. I believe Gundam is the definitive real robot show.

  2. animekritik says:

    Actually, yeah, I was gonna ask about your Tolkien thesis. What was it about? Also, if you’re in a deserted island and you can only take the full works of Gundam or the full works of Macross, which one would it be?

  3. no name says:

    Awesome! I greatly enjoyed 08th MS Team and War in the Pocket. I’ve rewatched almost all of the Gundam shows twice.

    I’ve seen G Gundam 2 times. My 3rd will be with digitalboy. Hopefully we’ll finish it sometime this week 😀

  4. I only skimmed this unholy, gargantuan post, and I’ll just say thumbs up for picks of Turn A Gundam glad you realized what a stupid whore you would have been for hating it.

  5. OGT says:

    Ignorant as I am for the basis of your taste, you seem to be on the track for sharing in the glory and agony that is the G Gundam fan: the show that you love, to death, all the way through, even though it’s patently ludicrous, completely disjointed from every Gundam series before and since, and has a bad English dub. I have to take extra-special care when I mention–almost casually–that G Gundam is one of my favorite Gundam series, right up there with Turn-A and (now) 00.

    Words cannot describe the feeling of shame, of rage, of the desire to Shining Finger those who would mock G Gundam, those who cannot understand that this is what happens when you let Yasuhiro Imagawa loose in the Gundam franchise. It is an epitome of the love-it-or-hate-it anime: the very reasons that make its fans so fervently in support of it are the very reasons its detractors despise it.

    In other news: the comment about the personal context needed to enjoy a work of fiction (or anything, really) is dead-on. If you’re not in the mood for a certain series, or are mentally unprepared to set aside prejudices and take the work for what it is, it can be very, very hard to like something, even something that’s very well done. The saga of my life has been, to this very day, finding out new things that I previously thought I didn’t enjoy, until I found out that I did: I had trouble watching Mushishi, because I thought of it more as “horror” than “character portraits” and was summarily creeped out by needles in eyes and green-mold disintegration. Someone finally described the series in a way that was accessible to me at the time and cast the series in a different light, and so I watched it, and loved it from then on. Broadening taste is a good thing–but one step at a time, usually.

  6. ghostlightning says:

    @ Funeral

    While there may be some robot shows that are more ‘real’, (in terms of practical application I still favor Macross’ Variable Fighters over Mobile Suits), Gundam simply offers more as a franchise. The range of experiences you can get out of it is pretty substantial.

    Yeah I like Tolkien a lot too, though I haven’t read him in over a decade.

    @ animekritik

    In reverse order: I would choose Macross, no question. Never has a Gundam show inspired re-watches in me the same way Macross has (I keep re-watching the finale of Macross Frontier, the whole of Flashback 2012), as well as the musical extravaganza it offers.

    Kanno Yoko did pretty good work for Turn-A, but that’s not enough for me to give up Fire Bomber, Minmei, and Kanno’s own works for Macross Frontier.

    Also, the characters – while ranging from the legendary (Char, Bright), to the Badass (Norris Packard, Ramba Ral), to the lovely (Aina Sahalin), and the lovable (Rain); I don’t love them the way I love my Macross friends. Minmei, Ranka, Misa, Sheryl inspires more love than the totality of Gundam female characters. Isamu Dyson is more charismatic as a pilot, than any of the characters I’ve met in Gundam. It’s a matter of preference, love, and loyalty.

    My thesis: “Where in the World is Middle-Earth? A Post-Colonial Reading of J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Silmarillion”

    It’s really a warning to non-anglo readers of Tolkien’s text, that they may internalize the anglocentric ethnic value system that can be read from the text.

    The easiest examples to make: Easterlings look like Mongols, Southrons look like Moors; with an obsession for all things Western at the center. And the farther West on goes, the more anglo characters become. Valinor/Avallone itself is in the West.

    Dunedain/Westernesse needs little explanation.

    It’s important to note that I did not accuse Tolkien for being anglocentric/white supremacist/catholic. It’s but a reading that’s too easy to miss and whose values are easy enough to buy into.

    @ no name

    Your anime consumption is the stuff of legend. G Gundam is a wild hoot. What’s your favorite show in the franchise?

    @ digiboy

    Not liking an anime doesn’t make me a stupid whore, you jackass. Get Devil Gundam out of your system and stop it from putting dirty stinking verbiage in your foul mouth.

    But yeah, I’m warming up to Turn A. Also, I’m watching Nadesico too just like you said. Episode 3 was quite something.

    @ OGT

    G Gundam is so much fun. It’s very difficult not to see the kind of love for the franchise, and for shonen anime itself that has been lavished on the series. Master Asia will deliver the comeuppance to those who choose to mock this show.

    And yeah, I hesitate to dismiss shows as long as I can, even when I do drop them. I find it difficult to agree with people when they say a show is bad, while I have no problem affirming a positive opinion on a show that I didn’t even enjoy. This is because not only due to the point we’ve been discussing, but also because I have a capacity for appreciation that is difficult to top. Add this to my ability to change my mind without issues or drama, I can foresee a time when I revisit an anime I currently don’t like, and find myself enjoying it thoroughly.

  7. mechafetish says:

    This post warmed my heart dude.

    I feel like the long journey I spent trying to get you to love something I loved so much is coming to an end. *Sniff*

    To this day, I find it hard to explain why I love Gundam. I don’t think its just nostalgia, and it certainly isn’t because of some absolutely (read:least subjective) quality in these shows. I just do, in my own unconditional, vulnerable way.

    Cheers to the birth of another Gundam Fag!

  8. schneider says:

    I’m honestly flattered, even if I haven’t reached PhD in Gundam-fu yet (i.e. get the perfect ending for Gihren’s Greed).

    >We will not like some anime because we are not ready for it.

    Very true. I didn’t like G at first but I had a blast rewatching it. X marathon is coming up soon and I think I’m going to love it.

    I’m curious about your dislike about CCA. What part of it ruined the thing for you? Quess and Hathaway? Nu-Sazabi space bar brawl ending in a copout? Lack of sexy Re-GZ? I still think the ending was a monumental event in anime rivalries, though.

    I enjoy the Gundam fandom a lot, because it’s very diverse. I’ve done my part of broadening other people’s horizons in Gundam (i.e. making them watch UC or appreciate other AU than Seed and Wing), and I don’t plan on stopping.

    Also, yay Tolkien, and The Hobbit is my favorite book out of him.

  9. ghostlightning says:

    @ mechafetish

    Despite our justifications and rationalizations, love is ultimately arbitrary. If it is contingent, or conditional, it’s not the same.

    You love Gundam, and it’s been good to you.

    @ schneider

    First of all, I don’t think much of the rivalry of Char and Amuro. It’s not as riveting.

    From a response to Mechamarshmellow some time ago:

    The foundation of their rivalry is flimsy, and the fact that they made such a big deal about the quasi-peseudo-love triangle involving Lalah Sune gives me headaches.

    Here are some rivalries that rivet me (even if they don’t have the breadth and scope of Amuro v Char):

    Asuka v Shinji (especially since Shinji wants no part of it)
    Isamu Dyson v Guld Bowman (Macross Plus; this led to probably the best mecha dogfight ever)
    Lelouch Lamperouge v Kururugi Suzaku (made me rage against Suzaku and in the end they both won me over)
    Kallen Kouzuki v Kururugi Suzaku (GAR mode of the above rivalry, and tragic ending from the perspective of their relationship with each other moves me)
    Yagami Light v L
    Sakuragi Hanamichi v Kaede Rukawa (immature and moronic, but very endearing)
    Atobe Keigo v Tezuka Kunimitsu (they should just yaoi it, dammit)

    Other rivalries that didn’t interest me as much as it could:

    Uraki Kou v Anavel Gato (Stardust Memory)
    Uraki Kou v Bernard Monsha
    Schneizel v Lelouch
    Saotome Alto v Brera Sterne
    Setsuna F. Seiei v Ali Al-Sarchez

    Secondly, I’m not a fan of the Newtype concept. I don’t like magic and pixiedust in my real robot anime (the same way I don’t like Ranka’s Vajra Voodoo). The Newtype theme is BIG in CCA, which brings us finally to,

    Quess Paraya.

    I’m so irritated that I’m concerned that I won’t make any sense. Let’s start with an easy mark: Quess Paraya. I don’t like her not because she’s a stupid whore, but how important Tomino makes her in the story. A big part of the revenge of Zeon, CHAR’S FUCKING COUNTERATTACK, is distracted by her. Her storyline (ugh) caught EVERYONE in its web: Amuro, Char, Gyunei, Hathaway… it’s sickening. Hathaway Noah is one of the worst emotards in all anime (if there’s a worse one I don’t want to know) – he endangers missions and fucks everything up for her sake. He’s NOBODY! Gyunei would’ve been an interesting character, save that the rivalry with Char that would’ve been good to watch became more about Quess Paraya… Oh good lord. Conveniently, Quess just happens to be A POWERFUL NEWTYPE that has a CUSTOM MOBILE ARMOR that conveniently, the WHOLE OF ZEON CAN’T FIND A PILOT FOR. She enters the battles as a completely random entity – totally unconcerned with any of the causes, and fights for… wait for it… CHAR’S LOVE. Oh give me a number of dunderhead Rankas to equal the stars.

    Goodness, I sound so angry! Maybe I’ll warm up to Newtypes someday, and appreciate the FAINAL ATTACK OF LOVE AND DEATH AND THE POWER OF DEAD FRIENEMIES. But for now, this is really not how I wanted the UC conflict to end. What a waste.

  10. sybilant says:

    @ghostlightning

    You forgot the pivotal Setsuna F. Seiei v. Mr. Bushido, note:

    “This is… Love!”

    And that thing about “only have eyes for me!” 0_o

  11. ghostlightning says:

    @ sybilant

    But, sybiliant is love, and I have eyes only for you.

  12. no name says:

    My favorite would be G Gundam. It makes my heart race faster than any other Gundam show.

  13. gaguri says:

    That’s an interesting and passionate way of looking at what a certain franchise means to you. It’s something I don’t subscribe to, but hey as long as we enjoy what we’re doing right 😀

    I’m most likely never going to explore the whole gundam franchise, but I am interested in watching maybe one or two just to put “gundam” label under my repetoir. From the opinions I value, Victory Gundam and 008th have been recommended as its best works. I’d like to hear your recommendations as well.

  14. ghostlightning says:

    @ no name

    Awesome. I think love for G Gundam is its own category.

    @ gaguri

    Enjoyment is the game.

    I can straight out recommend The 08th MS Team and 0080 War in the Pocket.

    Iknight once said that for the fandom, The 08th MS Team is the pinnacle of the franchise, while for anime fans in general War in the Pocket is the pinnacle. (This is quite manageable because 08th is only 12 eps long and WitP is only 6) I agree with Iknight.

    But if for any reason you really want to get into Gundam and its world, try this tool: Finding Your Gateway Gundam.

  15. schneider says:

    @ gaguri

    Victory is… trippy. Opinions of it are mixed: some say it’s Zeta-level good, others say it’s bad. Either way, Reinforce Jr. has the bravest crew in all of Gundam, and the combat is all sorts of awesome.

    @ ghostlightning

    If you don’t like Tomino’s Newtype concept, then you really won’t like CCA. The truth is, Tomino made Gundam in order to explore human evolution through Newtypes, instead of selling robot toys. The Gundam novels are a proof of this–less mechs and more philosophizing, and no room for a sequel (though he regretted ending it as he did, so he put the novels in its own separate continuity).

    I took the Axis push for what it signified–the hope for a better tomorrow, Newtype or Oldtype.

  16. ghostlightning says:

    @ schneider

    I invoke intentional fallacy. In literary criticism, it addresses the assumption that the meaning intended by the author of a literary work is of primary importance. By characterizing this assumption as a “fallacy,” a critic suggests that the author’s intention is not important.

    In this case, it’s not as important as my own intention in experiencing the text. After all, it is my experience. The same way my intention in this post is of less important to you than your own experience of it. It’s not meant to invalidate or disparage Tomino at all, it just frames my own bias and expectations.

    “Word of God” will have little relevance to my experience. And if he did indeed value his newtype philosophizing over TEH GUNDAMs, then I’m even less inclined to like him. It’s not even particularly well-done as evolutionary concepts go. I’d even prefer Jack McKinney’s shoehorning of “The Shapings” in creating a protoculture mythology for Robotech (but that’s me).

    And the way Newtype abilities were treated, oh lord don’t get me started. If you recall our exchange re bits and funnels, you’ll see how even this aspect of the Newtype concept isn’t enjoyable for me.

    And robot toys… I BUYS TEHM.

  17. gloval says:

    I feel out of place with all these Gundam fangasms LOL. But your posts get me more and more intrigued with War in the Pocket.

    I must agree that long-time Macross fans are a simple and happy lot. It’s simply because we understand the optimistic message of Macross and try to live it out. And I tend to believe that recent foul activities aren’t from the long-time fans but from shippers.

  18. ghostlightning says:

    @ gloval

    I had just finished watching Legend of the Galactic Heroes, and I’m geeked out that the seiyuu for Walter von Shenkopp is the same for Bruno S. Global. LOL.

    You can’t go wrong re War in the Pocket. It’s nothing like Macross, in a very good way.

    Yeah maybe we need to make a distinction between long-time fans and those who kind of started just a few years ago – when being an internet blowhard is already prevalent.

    I hesitate to attribute our being simple and happy to Macross’ optimistic message, but I’ve no problem relating it to love, Minmei, and music.

  19. I think part of the pleasure of G Gundam is the gradual discovery that, underneath the ‘How on earth is this like any other Gundam?’ elements, the show gradually begins to conform more and more to the tropes laid down by its predecessors. That’s a good example of the kind of ‘metaverse’ pleasure that the franchise offers.

    Interesting point about the desire for more Zeta-era sidestories. I’ve heard others say that before, and I’m inclined to agree. Since you liked 0083, you might like the Ecole du Ciel manga: it’s set in 0085, it focuses on a female pilot and the chap who draws it was involved in 0080, Tytania, SDF Macross and Macross 7. And I suppose there’s Char’s Deleted Affair (or ‘A Portrait of the Comet as a Young Man‘), which follows Char’s progress before Zeta. But that one’s a bit wacky, to say the least. Still, one of the nice things about Gundam manga is its ability to explore obscure corners.

    @ gaguri: I’d recommend 0080: War in the Pocket over Victory: it’s much more manageable in size and I think it’s better. Moreover, from reading your own posts and comments – do correct me if I’m wrong – I get the impression you’re interested in children’s stories, and the ramifications of what stories we tell to children. 0080 is partly about that. But whatever you do, avoid spoilers!

  20. otou-san says:

    30 this year? As am I. Perhaps it’s time for me to revisit the franchise as well, since it shares my birth-year.

    You and mechafetish have done a pretty good job of convincing me so far, but I think the main reason for my wanting to watch Gundam is summed up in your older post: I feel like I should in order to appreciate the genre, which is so inextricably linked to the franchise. Seeing as how I’m on a big vintage kick lately (Matsumotoverdose), it might be the right time.

  21. omo says:

    >> We will not like some anime because we are not ready for it.

    True true.

    I’m not entirely sold out, but I think the underlying point you didn’t state explicitly is that the Gundam metaverse is just a corner of a bigger world. A person does no one any favors by sticking to it like dogma. Or any particular psychological construct not rooted in even-handed observance.

    The journey is rich and rewarding, despite ups and downs. If you find the landscape relevant to your interests then by all means keep going.

    The road we walk is like a typical ending animation for a Gundam show. Most of them are juicy as all hell.

  22. ghostlightning says:

    @ mechafetish

    DO YOO HAVE THE STUFF THAT @ The Animanachronism SUGGESTED?

    @ The Animanachronism

    Thanks for the suggestions, it’s certainly more interesting than @ mechafetish’s calls for me to watch SEED. (I ended up downloading it anyway, threatening to prove him right that I will end up watching it when I run out of Gundam).

    @ otou-san

    Yeah, I do feel that being a mecha fan is incomplete without exposure to not just one Gundam show, but a selection of Gundam shows. Lbrevis and I have been talking about this – like her I was bothered that I didn’t get what the fuss about Char was.

    So even if you only see The 08th MS Team or 0080: War in the Pocket, you’re still ‘missing out’ on a gigantic presence in the world of mecha. In any case you’re starting out with the original movie trilogy, which is a great idea since you’ll be meeting the holy trinity of Amuro, Bright, and Char there. Even if you don’t see any other Gundam, you know who they are (but they move on to better things in the sequels).

    I’ll recommend a sequence when you’re done with the trilogy and feel like watching more.

    P.S. I’ve just seen ep 03 of Nadesico and am very concerned about Gai Daigoji (he rocks my world).

    @ omo

    >>The road we walk is like a typical ending animation for a Gundam show.

    Very interesting, but I find that there’s a wide variety of EDs in Gundam (Kaioshin won me over with MS Igloo 2’s Hello Mr. Lonely Heart). So I’m not sure what typifies it. I remember Fa running after a bouncing Haro in Zeta, which is very different from Lockon Stratos doing Setsuna F. Seiei’s hair in the 2nd ED of Gundam 00 (S1).

    Please elaborate because I feel like I want to make a post out of this simile of yours.

    And yes, I’ve no intentions of sticking to Gundam or the UC like dogma. I stick to Macross like dogma (kidding).

  23. digitalboy says:

    Oh no, you definitely CAN be a stupid whore for not liking something, particularly if that thing is Turn A Gundam. I know, because I invented the definition of stupid whore, and that definition is ‘people who don’t like Turn A Gundam’

    *sounds the ‘he’s at it again’ alarm*

  24. KaeBoo says:

    Geeezez! I have never seen anyone getting converted into being a gundam fanboy this fast and this bad! Congratulations to your (tor)mentors!

  25. Camario says:

    I really need to re-watch CCA one of these days, to finally make up my mind about it.

    Right now I’m also watching Turn A too, which seems to be all the rage at the moment, and it’s been extremely rewarding, certainly, considering I essentially dropped it back when was originally released (1999-2000 or so).

    Big mistake, I suppose, but no harm done. I expect to finish it and get on to X shortly as well.

    “I thoroughly enjoyed Code Geass, but after 50 episodes I don’t feel that there’s a larger world for it to relate to.”

    Well, with Gundam and Macross it certainly helps that the larger world is already out there and has, in fact, been built over decades.

    Honestly, I don’t think the original Gundam and the original Macross, especially as a couple of TV series and not in their more refined movie formats, were that much different in this particular respect. I don’t think they screamed “yes, there’s a larger universe here” in and of themselves. There was some potential for it, which was exploited, but it could easily have been left alone. Thankfully, of course, it wasn’t.

    The quality of the individuals shows in either of the two franchises still fluctuates a lot though, regardless of whether they fit into some larger continuity or not.

  26. ghostlightning says:

    @ digiboy

    Suit yourself.

    @ Kaeboo

    It’s been a long time coming, it’s remarkable to me why it took me so long. Maybe because there were no Gundam shows back when we were kids. I was already in my 20s when they started showing Wing on local tv. By then, not having torrents and such, the franchise was so intimidatingly huge to take on.

    @ Camario

    I discovered Macross when it first aired here in 1984. Interestingly in the Philippines there was a local dub in english. Goodness I even remember part of the opening theme:

    “Super Space Fortress! Macroosssssss!”

    At the time there was no larger context for me, and being 7 years old I wouldn’t know what the concept of context was.

    The feeling now is that when I watch Macross 7, or Frontier – the larger context is available. Same with Gundam. Watching MS Igloo 2 was a very rewarding experience.

    I wonder if something else can be made further in the Geass universe? I find it difficult to imagine, but I never know. It’s the same with the Gurren Lagann universe, and the Evangelion universe. I’m tempted to consider the Gunbuster OVAs, but they’re still quite short.

  27. Sakura says:

    @gl Congrats on finally discovering your burning love for Gundam.

    Its well worth it, well some of it XD

  28. maakusutipen says:

    I totally liked the joke you did with the first image. Maybe because im still spazzing about Ranka and Sherly singing.

    I too think am not ready yet to appreciate Gundam much like you were.

  29. ghostlightning says:

    @ Sakura

    Thanks, I’m happy to have Gundam in my CHARGING HEART OF LOVE.

    @ maakusatipen

    Sheryl shouting Watashi no uta wo kike is a shoutout to Basara Nekki from Macross 7 (see my avatar). He is a god. Watch moar Macross in the meantime.

  30. Crusader says:

    After the passing of Lord Tomino the Gundam fandom has been fractured, all sense of unity was lost when the dreaded barbarian hordes of SEED invaded at the behest of the Dark Lord. Since that day the glory of Gundam has been all but spent, though there is probably one who can reunite the the Kingdoms of UC and AU.

    Still I trust you found Norris Packard vs. 8th MS Team to be one of the most memorable fights you have ever seen yes?

  31. ghostlightning says:

    @ Crusader

    Your trust in me is well placed, comrade. That encounter deserves a post from me. Norris is to me, the baddest badass in the metaverse.

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  35. Nate says:

    Since I can be considered a non-anglo reader of Tolkien I’m really interested in your undergraduate thesis. Do you have a digital copy you could send me? Thanks in advance!

    • ghostlightning says:

      That thesis was submitted in 1997, and a great many personal catastrophes have befallen me since, including the loss of my copies. The De La Salle University (Manila) Library should still have it.

      However, if you so permit me I’d be happy to converse with you over email with regards to any questions you may have. Not exactly presenting myself as a thesis adviser (though I’ve done such work in the past), but I’d be happy to contribute to any writing on this subject.

  36. moritheil says:

    I’m totally seeing this huge “growth as a man” theme present in your writing. And for that growth to come from mecha anime, well, that . . . that is awesome.

    • ghostlightning says:

      This made me think. I certainly didn’t intend this theme, but far be it for me to invalidate your reading (author is dead and all that). I thought I’m kind of odd that I’ve seen almost a hundred days worth of anime (from childhood in at the dawn of the ’80s; I’m 32 now)and yet I feel like I know very little about even the anime that is relevant to my interests. In the months after I started blogging I got exposed to a lot of new shows and I suppose I charted the growth of my appreciation for them.

      Thank you for generously sharing your observation.

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