Gundam 00 Post Special (Part 2)

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Part 2 of 3 of Gundam 00 Post Special. (Might contain spoilers. You’ve been warned. =p )

  • There’s just not enough reason to really root for anybody

This is a broader and related take on why the Gundam Meisters didn’t arouse any kind of sympathy from me at first. The whole shebang started because Aeolia Schenberg on a ‘whim’ wanted to eradicate war (or at least that was what his objective looked like at the start; it might not be true). So he embarks on preparations that take centuries and enlist individuals of various nationalities to his cause. This was the novelty of Gundam 00, as well as its weakness. From a cynical point of view, Aeolia Schenberg is just a rich and intelligent guy embarking on a quixotic endeavor. The Gundam Meisters, on the other hand, mostly joined up either to get revenge or just being plain naive about how to stop war. What I’m trying to drive at is that these people actually had nothing to lose except their precious Gundams and their lives. They weren’t protecting anything. On the other hand, I feel not enough has been done to make us sympathize with the HRL, AEU, and Union soldiers. It didn’t help that the soldiers’ dialogue mostly were scripted to be supposedly funny (except for the HRL’s). The supposedly serious moments don’t have much impact on me.

In SEED the objective was clearer: fight for your country/colony/beliefs; fight for your life and your friends. It made for more compelling dramatics. In Code Geass, we all know Britannians are the conquerors. We find ourselves easily rooting for the underdogs–Lelouch and his Black Knights. To further my point–both Gundam SEED Stargazer and 08th MS Team has achieved far more when it comes to making us care for characters despite having fewer episodes.

  • The super-soldier who is a product of experimentation is overused and out of place

This has been used in Gundam SEED/Destiny, with a much greater success (Stellar is the best why did she have to die T_T). I suppose they had to use it to give some sort of background for the HRL’s ace pilot and Halellujah. But it smacks of lack of imagination.

  • Needs more memorable music

One of the things I liked about Gundam SEED/Destiny was the music. The tunes were catchy, and I liked watching and listening to the ending songs. The series changed OPs and EDs like snake shedding skin. Anyway, I still listen from time to time to those songs. With G00, there’s not much to remember in song unless you really dig those Meisters’ barbershop in a beach setting.

  • The ending was just plain, nothing more

At first everything was good until Alejandro Corner came along with his golden monstrosity. It was silly as Corner was supposed to be master, why did he not send Libbons instead? It makes more sense to have Graham Aker as the backup. And I also would have preferred a longer match between Setsuna and Aker. Although yes the ending is still decent enough (unlike Gundam SEED Destiny’s), it was not as good as the 1st season enders of Gundam SEED and Code Geass. Sure you have characters dying but other than Lockon Stratos I couldn’t care that much about the others.

I guess that’s it for what I don’t like about Gundam 00. This post series so far has been a good exercise in putting into words what aspects of Gundam 00 didn’t appeal to me. I just didn’t want to say ‘I don’t like Gundam 00!’ and then fail to explain why. In the 3rd and last post, I will continue my ramblings with focus now on what aspects of the series I like.

To be continued

Related posts:

Gundam 00 Post Special (Part 1)

Gundam 00 Post Special (Part 3)

5 responses »

  1. Once again I suppose I’m compelled to pop up and offer some counterarguments – though once again I should begin my remarks by saying that this is a good post.

    There’s just not enough reason to really root for anybody.

    Actually, I think I agree with this one. 00 didn’t go to great lengths to help us like Celestial Being or their opponents. While this is rather lifelike (there’s rarely a real-life conflict where I feel happy ‘rooting for’ a particular side), it doesn’t make for great drama.

    The super-soldier who is a product of experimentation is overused and out of place.

    Stellar? Liked her better when she was Four Murasame.

    Seriously though, I didn’t feel that this was as much of a problem. ‘Has Science Gone Too Far?’ is a hot topic in the world’s media and to me the super-soldiers felt like the terrorism: both were attempts (not very successful in the case of the terrorists) to tie the show in to ‘Contemporary Issues’. And in a sense (H)Allelujah and Soma/Marie are just more obvious versions of what all the Meisters are: characters who’ve been changed into what they are by other people (Lockon by terrorists, Setsuna by Ali and Tieria by someone-we-don’t-know-who).

    Needs more memorable music.

    Fair point. Fukada made a point of choosing catchy tunes for SEED and Destiny. Music’s a very personal taste, but I must admit I did like the electric guitar business which was used for the Thrones, and the first opening song.

    The ending was just plain, nothing more.

    Maybe. Certainly the wholesale, Tomino-level slaughter of characters wasn’t as affecting as it could have been. Perhaps 00 is much less about the characters than SEED and Code Geass are. I for one found the timeskip tag exciting, though, as it left us with plenty to guess about.

    Anyhow, I look forward to reading your third entry on what you did like in the show.

  2. I definitely agree with all of your points. I thought the OP/Ed songs were pretty catchy though. So I’ll disagree with you there.

    I thought the best part of the show was when Lockon died… other than that the show wasnt all that great.

    btw i wrote a brief review on the series. Doesn’t have as much detail as you but i think you’ll appreciate it.

  3. @TA

    >>Perhaps 00 is much less about the characters than SEED and Code Geass are

    That’s where the trouble starts because what endears me most to my favorite shows (or most shows I consider to be good) are the characters. The times when popular shows that are considered good don’t become a favorite of mine is precisely because of that. Weird preference huh?

    And about the music, well, perhaps that’s something that we may give Fukuda credit for. I still wanna strangle him for botching GSD though.

    @wriXeL

    >>I thought the best part of the show was when Lockon died… other than that the show wasnt all that great.

    I definitely agree when it comes to Lockon. I wonder what personality his twin possesses though.

    >>btw i wrote a brief review on the series. Doesn’t have as much detail as you but i think you’ll appreciate it.

    This is actually the first time I had to break up posts on a series. I can’t believe it myself I’m wasting some brain cells on this. 😀

  4. If that music was not memorable then I don’t know what is. This series had my favourite OST of the season and was one of the few I actually picked up in a while. Your telling me nothing stuck in your head.

    And honestly most of these things strike me of typical nitpicks of a Gundam 00 basher. I’m waiting to find that blogger who actually has something good to say about the series who isn’t just me.

  5. >>Your telling me nothing stuck in your head.

    That’s right.

    >>I’m waiting to find that blogger who actually has something good to say about the series who isn’t just me.

    Here’s to hoping you don’t have to wait for a long, long, time. =p

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