12 Moments of 2011 #1: Conversational Meta

This post is part of the 12 Days series.

The Universal Century is not too long as opposed to other fictional timelines, but its 150 years have been fraught with the major war or two, and a dozen different petty conflicts.

UC 0096, where Gundam Unicorn takes place in, is nowhere near the end of charted wars. So it becomes very poignant when two conversations in episode 4 expound on the woes that plague the Earth Sphere. Audrey in the diner shows the rift between Spacenoid and Earthnoid, while taking a stab at CCA Char (as if he needed it). Banagher in the desert is about the futility of making both sides see eye-to-eye with each other, enabling the main character to shed his tears in a gnawing feeling of powerlessness and anguish.

Yes, the content of these scenes are very good. But what kills me is, in the grand scheme of things, none of the problems they address will be solved in the knowable future. Their insignificant lives will burn out like a candle in the wind, and the Earth Sphere will remain wracked in pockets of fighting. Because in the grim darkness of the Universal Century, there is only the exploitation of robot toys.

But it’s conversations like these that remind me how Gundam is a sci-fi series. The ideals are lofty, but humanity can’t keep up. And that Audrey, the diner owner, Banagher, and Zinnerman are just dust. Dust, yes, who can’t help but hope. I wonder how rich Gundam would be if it could spend explaining its themes in this manner, instead of during climactic battles!

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2 Responses to 12 Moments of 2011 #1: Conversational Meta

  1. I wonder how rich Gundam would be if it could spend explaining its themes in this manner, instead of during climactic battles!

    Yes.

    To be fair though, Kira Yamato chews on such themes while growing misty-eyed on some beach, while waiting for his Strike Freedom that is yet to come.

    Guin Sang Lineford and Lily Borjanon would have conversations together and with others about things like this minus the sentimentality.

    Tomino knows Gundam AGE has already had its share of interactions about war and destruction.

    But it is Gundam Unicorn’s compressed narrative, thematic sweep, and concentrated events that bring so much of this forward and with such relevance.

    • R1CK_D0M says:

      yeesssss. There’s something very theatrical and momentous about the way gundam unicorn goes about these conversations that make them feel different from every other gundam series that has done essentially the same thing. Maybe it’s the music? or the great animation? Or the fact that I have a full hour of episode to look forward to? Dunno, but it works.

      also effff that warhammer 40k reference 🙂

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