The State of the Gunpla Union – 042009

Just random stuff today.  I’ve done a little cleaning on the menu side to the right here, getting rid of the tag cloud, and simply making categories for the kits I’m building.  Hopefully it’ll make it easier to find what you’re interested in.

The PG Astray is 99% done, finished top coating the last couple of pieces yesterday, just need to put it together.  Overall, a good kit, and I think the red looks even better after the top coat.  Even the wife, who has absolutely 0% interest in Gundam though the same.  I’ve posted part 3 of the WP, and will finish up in part 4.

Next kit up for building… still thinking about it.  I picked up Turn A yesterday because the local department store had it for 1800 yen, so maybe I’ll build that.  I’m actually thinking about doing my first “mod” so to say, as I’ve stocked up on some metal parts.  I’m most likely going to bling bling a Zaku II kit, as I’ve got 5 (!) of them.  From there I may go back and finally finish the Hi-nu.  I really like the Hi-nu kit so I want to do some practice with metal parts before I try my hand on the Hi-nu.  So next up is most likely going to be the Turn A followed by a Zaku II (Shin Matsunaga’s unit).

I should probably take the time to break open my Zeta Plus GFFMC, as I’ve not even touched it in the PG frenzy.  I guess I really shouldn’t have worried about not being about to find the Limited blue model, as it’s still widely available, and I’ve already seen some places offering it for 14,000 yen or even cheaper.  In the long run, the GFFMC’s are a tad on the expensive side, so I guess that’s why you see even the limited editions perpetually in stock.

On the Gundam front though, news has indeed been slow since the double whammy release of the Zeta Plus and the Astray.  Guess Bandai is wise enough to let everyone’s wallets recover…  For the foreseeable future, there is simply nothing coming out that I’m interested in.   The only thing that has me somewhat excited is going to go see the life size Gundam that will be put up at Odaiba, and next year’s Unicorn Gundam Movie.  Would prefer a TV series over a movie but you take what you can get.

As for my thoughts on Gundam 00.  Nearly a month after it’s finished, I’ve looked back, and I’m pretty much eh.  At this point, there isn’t very many things “new” that a Gundam series can do, but the first season started off with a great premise.  Armed intervention of warfare with Gundams.  Unfortunately, we ran into a big problem of having too many characters, much more than was needed.  Did we really need the Gundam Thrones?  Do we really care about Patrick or Mr. Bushido, or the majority of the innovators that are introduced?  I feel too many characters led to poor character development.  This is particularly true of the second season which simply focused a little too much on Setsuna.  The others had their moments, but it felt like we were clearing them up in the first 10 episodes and then it’s all Setsuna. We also see then the obvious play on previous Gundam themes such as the classic, fall in love with the enemy girl for the oh so convienient “Hi, I’m Lock-on’s twin brother” (See Lala (First),  Four (Zeta), and Stella (Destiny).  Allelujah’s character development was finished in the first season, so we throw in Soma Peries who for the most part just joins up and that’s that.  And probably the most original character of the show, Tieria, well, he’s just enigmatic.  No for the most part, season 2 was all Setsuna, stone cold Setsuna, with the annoying, do we really need Marina? (See Relena Peacecraft (W), Lacus (Seed)  and whiny Saji.  No, overall by the end of the show, there were just too many characters, that really made it hard to care about just any one.

Again, season 2 decided to rip off the Grypps war from Zeta, by replacing the Titans with the A-Laws, with a mixture of Char’s Neo-Zeon ideals of moving humanity to the next level.  Now I liked the Grypps war story, but I also cared about the characters, here it was, oh, yet another innovator popping up, or prattle from Marina…

As for the mech design, I’ve said before, I’m not the biggest fan of the 00 designs.  Particularly season 2, which outside of Exia -> Double 0, the others were just tweaks.  I will admit the Exia, Double 0, 0 Gundam design grew on me, but not enough to make me want to go out and pick up a kit to build.  Outside of the 300 yen SD figure.   When they eventually make the MG line, I’ll look at it, but there simply wasn’t something that made me say, bad ass!  I will admit some of the fights were cool, but by the end of it I was more like, just let Setsuna handle it, apparently he’s the man, everyone else takes the backseat.

Quality of animation was overall topnotch, and outside of Marina’s shitty song, the music was over all good.  (Still doesn’t hold a candle to stuff like Turn A and some of SeeD’s music)

So in the long run, I found it to be enjoyable, but definitely not the best.

Would love to hear what others thought about 00 overall, what are your opinions?

2 thoughts on “The State of the Gunpla Union – 042009

  1. Inclined to agree with pretty much all of your points. Seems like all the characters I wanted to see more of (Doubelluja- who gets the most badass kill in the entire show when he rips the enemy MS apart and also has about 30 seconds of screentime total, Teiria) didn’t get as much time as other far more useless characters (Shut up Marina, the men are fighting). The ride wasn’t bad but I think I enjoyed Turn A/Zeta more.

    Not to mention bandai milked the hell out of the 00 kits, giving us the 00 Gundam, the 0 Raiser, a 00 Raiser kit and a 00 Raiser Desginer Color Ver., and a Trans Am version somewhere in the mix. Naturally the kits that came out at the start of the season are lacking things like the GN Sword 3 (which sucks pretty hard), so I feel kinda like I got zapped by getting the 00 Raiser when I did. Add in that the kits themselves feel a bit lacking as far as detail goes (I’ve seen this remedied with some mods but that’s a bit beyond what I can manage right now) and I’ll tell anyone straight up that I think the S1 0 kits are superior at least in terms of design.

    Finished watching Turn A last night though and I pretty much need to build the MG now.

  2. Agreed on the Hallelujah point. When he’s let out at the end of the series for his nice 30 second rampage, and you see that Allelujah is cool with this, it makes you wonder why they didn’t use that point earlier, rather being relegated to a final “oh look, he’s at peace with himself” closure type segment. They could have brought him out earlier to kick some as weith Memento Mori, etc.

    I expect that when they start making MG kits for 00 Gundams, you’ll see more details with all the weapons. Bandai just wants to milk what they can out of the HG and non-grade scale models before that.

    Turn A ended up being one of my favs just because of that fact that overall, it’s so much brighter. The atmosphere, colors, and just everything. Watch V Gundam before or after Turn A, and you’ll be amazed at the complete difference. I’ve started on the MG Turn A too, it’s amazing how simple and fast a MG feels after you’ve been working with PG’s!

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