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[Crusader] Of effeminate antagonists and junk collectors (ZZ Gundam 1-10)

This was written in appreciation for Crusader’s monetary aid. A follow-up will be written after the completion of the series.

The first Gundam series I ever watched was Gundam Wing. I was so entertained and enthralled by it that it was actually the anime series that got me into being addicted with anime. I would study hard and not watch TV the entire day so long as the 7:30 pm slot was evacuated by my other family members just for me. Although I still missed some episodes, I was able to enjoy almost the entirety of the series. It is no joke to say that I have much respect for the Gundam metaverse: I am not averse to mecha, and the space drama is often quite entertaining (it just became rotten with Gundam Seed).

zz gundam

To be entirely honest, ZZ Gundam wasn’t too impressive when it started: unlike most series that start with a cold open, or in medias res, it started with a Judau Ashta who was just a delinquent and a junk collector who had no experience whatsoever piloting a Gundam. In addition, unlike the more melodramatic prequel of Zeta Gundam (having surmised from the preview episode), I think Yoshiyuki Tomino sought to lighten things up: Zeta was a great series for Gundam fans, and I think the reason for this was the amount of pathetic tragedy that was to be found in the show. (I mean pathetic in a postive way – invoking pathos.) No one wanted Four to die, but she did, leaving Kamille a shell of a man at the beginning of ZZ Gundam.

I wasn’t too impressed with the hijinks of junk collection and while the slapstick was amusing it did not contribute much to the progression of the plot. Consequently, the first few episodes were middling for me – they weren’t exactly unwatchable, just that they weren’t as much fun as I expected.

Mashmyre Cello as the villain was a pleasurable hypocrite, and I think it helps that he doesn’t really act villainous: he’s more effeminate than most antagonists. I think he’s even more effeminate than Aina Sahalin. There was just something lacking in the first few episodes that made the series somewhat boring.

This all turned around starting from episode seven, where after all the hiding by the Argama and the chasing by Mashmyre the Argama sought to escape into space, and did so with flair. It was also quite helpful that Roux Louka first appeared into the fray. I don’t like to admit it, but the romance in Gundam is also a wonderful selling point to me. I don’t like it to the point of bathos but if done properly (like in 08th MS Team) is simply spice to the politics and melodrama.

I also find purple-haired women to be very attractive. I hope Roux eventually develops a relationship with Judau, since they’re both tsundere for one another. The advice (by Crusader) to watch until the tenth episode was wonderful advice since it seems to have ended the beginning arc of the series: Fa finally goes back to her Kamille (oh, what tragic, unrequited love!) and Judau as well as his crew continue their adventure further into space. I cannot adjudge upon the entirety of the series as I have not finished it yet, but this was a very nice conclusion to the first ten episodes.