G Gundam: An Anime-ted Video Game

I’ve compared other Gundam related titles to Romeo and Juliet, an opera, and even the Bible, but I would have to say that what Mobile Fighter G Gundam most reminds me of is a video game come to animated life. Here, the characters are sneaking, trying to avoid detection. Here, the characters are fighting like action figures being smashed together. Here, a dramatic cutscene and a plot twist. Here, the characters are being exactly as they were designed to be, right down to their simplistic choice of dialogue. One stage after another, progressing towards the big finish and the happy ending.

That’s not a bad thing, I will emphasize, but it’s not necessarily a good thing either. Basically, if you want something realistic, this is not for you. But if you want something dramatic, something that has an undeniable resonance within the human soul, then this anime does have something for you.

The premise of the story is that all the nations of the world, or at least the rulers of said nations, have migrated to space colonies: Neo-Japan, Neo-America, Neo-China, etc. right down to Neo-Hong Kong (reflecting nations as they were thirty years ago). To avoid the catastrophic devastation of the 20th Century’s world wars, all the nations have agreed that they will compete every four years for the right to rule all of Earth and space. They each send a champion to Earth in a Gundam to fight all the other champions, never minding the ruin their tournament makes of the planet, and the last one standing wins. But something mysterious and nefarious is happening during the 13th tournament. A great evil is rising to threaten the whole of the world, the whole of humanity, and only the Gundams can stop it.

I remember enjoying this show quite a bit more as a kid than I do as an adult, but that probably holds true for most of such shows. There is a veritable bevy of flaws and critiques which I could level at G Gundam, and every word of it would be true. The premise is absurd, the world-building is lacking all realism, the high-fantasy level of martial arts is obviously impossible, the show is heavily formulaic, repetitive, and predictable, everything is far more dramatic than realistic, the lead hero tells the lead female to shut up far too often… and so on and so forth. And having everyone talk in unison so much is actually a bit creepy.

And yet it’s still fun!

I know that’s partially childish nostalgia speaking, but to this day I still enjoy many of the overly epic moments, and I think I have finally realized why.

I once read the words of particular author, who had achieved some success and renown, when he spoke of the principle of resonance. It is when the elements of any given story resonate within the audience such that a connection is formed, and that is when the deepest stories can be told and enjoyed. When there is resonance, I suppose all sorts of flaws can be tolerated and a story still be held up as worthwhile.

This anime has its flaws and would be more fun as a game, but it still very much has elements which resonate with the audience. It speaks to the pride of warriors and nations alike. It speaks to the rising of each new generation to take the mantle from the old and safeguard all that we hold dear. It speaks to the harshness of war as it ruins the world, and the lifelong pursuit of peace. It speaks to the most ancient drives which are present in our stories, to overcome all obstacles and rescue the most beautiful woman in the world from the clutches of evil. That woman, the one who loves and supports the hero, she is the princess of every story, the holy priestess of life, the virtuous daughter of a wicked man, the pure sacrifice offered up by the deceptive wizard to a dark power which devours everything. And thus must the knight in shining armor ride his noble steed to rescue his lady love from the very heart of madness! Whoo!

And I just love Allenby! 🙂

There is indeed a reason why I still love so many of the pivotal scenes in this series. They may be ridiculous at times, and far more poetic than realistic, but I’m just a sucker for humanity’s most epic moments: when the heroes come together to fight a horde, set to a military anthem sort of song; when the lead hero overcomes his fallen, villainous master, and redeems him in the act; when the warriors of all the bickering nations come together as one force to protect their world. All of which, I will mention, have great background music. It’s not a masterful soundtrack by any means, but it certainly has a couple of powerful hits I still can’t get enough of.

Seriously, this would be a fun game to play!

G Gundam has many flaws, and it certainly is targeted squarely towards young, teenage men, rather than any adults. Though, on that note, there are one or two risqué moments which I am actually glad Cartoon Network censored when they aired it. Really, there is no place for bare physical forms, male or female, in a kids show. If that can be overlooked, however, then this is simply a fun ride with a simple tale as old as time.

Rating: 7 stars out of 10.

Grade: B-Minus.

This entry was posted in Anime and Cartoons, Tuesday Review and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to G Gundam: An Anime-ted Video Game

  1. Pingback: #MechaMarch2023 Posts From Other People – Mechanical Anime Reviews

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