Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Thoughts on Gundam SEED

This is pretty interesting; I got some good feedback on my last post about Gundam Wing, so I figured I would continue with another Alternate Universe series: Gundam SEED. Unlike Gundam Wing, Gundam SEED is incredibly difficult to discuss properly without a flood of arguments coming from both sides.

I'll say it here and now: Gundam SEED is a perfectly enjoyable series. Put away the bias fanboy goggles and you'll find that SEED is a decent entry in the Gundam franchise, with impressive visuals, high-quality battle scenes, and a good balance of drama and politics.

Despite all this, opinions are incredibly divided. Objectively, SEED was a great way to bring in newer fans to Gundam. Older fans of the U.C. era are incredibly against SEED, unfortunately. It has a lot to do with the fact that it was spiritual remake of the original Mobile Suit Gundam, and long-time fans couldn't help but resent the direction and style it took.

So, what do you think? Just how good was SEED, if at all?



  1. Seed was my very first Gundam series and I can say without shame that I really enjoyed it. It handled emotional tension very well and the soundtrack is excellent to this day. While the first half was a bit slow, I did like how it picked up the pace in the second half which led to well-executed climax.

    That said, Seed didn't exactly whet my appetite for rest of the franchise and I'm not sure why.. (that wouldn't come until 00). Looking back I think it may be because the story lacked that deeper philosophical component found in a lot of Gundam shows, a "spirit" for lack of a better word. I still think it's a perfectly solid show in its own right and agree it did a fine job of introducing new fans.

  2. Honestly, I find that Gundam series are usually not very good. Don't get me wrong, I love Gundamm but being an excellent anime isn't one of them. I fell in love with Gundam back when I was in second grade. My best friend who was around three years got me into it just by talking about the show and the mechs. I soon found myself in Toysrus looking at the terrifyingly awesome 1/100 Deathscythe Hell "Custom". I had to have it and I have probably never been more excited than when she bought it for me. I soon begged my mom to purchase me Endless Waltz on Amazon and after watching it I was hooked.
    I found that philosophical crap utterly boring but it didn't matter because I loved the mobile suits. When G Gundam came on the air I thought the designs were ridiculous as well as pretty much the whole show but I enjoyed it because the mechs were unique and the series was action packed. I didn't watch seed because the designs were too plain compared to those of Wing or G Gundam and it also didn't provide the cocaine injected thrill ride that G Gundam or Dragon Ball Z did. Once 00 came out I just couldn't bring myself to watch it at the time either. I hated the mecha designs and found myself not being able to watch that boring crap.
    Recently within the past four years I have gone back and watched most of the shows. Wing was boring as shit but I love it for the nostalgia. Endless Waltz still holds a special place in my heart. G Gundam was just as I remember it, not very Gundam like except for the recycle animation sequences. 0083 was one of the most epic series I have ever seen but most people would agree that it's not best. The 08th MS Team was really good. Gundam 00 wound up being an awesome series and I actually warmed up to those designs. I've seen the UC OVA's so far which seems pretty good with the only thing lacking in my opinion is the story direction. I still have so much more to watch but so far it seems to me that I forgive these shows because of the love I have for the mobile suits.

    1. Pretty reasonable explanation actually, I think most fans are more concerned with the mechs themselves. They get into and stay fans for the Gundam, and eventually get into gunpla (though this isn't always the case).

    2. Well like it or hate it Gundam has always been a 30 minute toy commercial. Were it not for the model kits the whole franchise would have died in 1979. I'm guessing audiences at the time probably felt the same way you do since the show itself did so poorly it got cancelled.

      Personally, I would never put Gundam on the same level of sophistication as, say, Legend of the Galactic Heroes but it still manages to be more entertaining than 90% of the crap coming out of anime these days.

  3. Seed didn't age very well in my opinion. It's clear that despite a massive budget (compared to other anime at the time), Fukuda pumped most of it into music which was indeed great but no substitute for the writing and animation.

    I did feel very emotionally satisfied the first time I watched Seed but after thinking about it some more, the story really doesn't hold up. The problem is that the whole CE universe seems to bend itself around the main characters. Any faction not with Kira is depicted as a bunch of raving lunatics. The final battle between Kira and Rau also appears to shoot itself in the foot regarding its anti-racist message. In short, Rau pretty much revealed Kira as a complete hypocrite who was only able to do what he did because of his abilities. Kira is in denial of this all the way into Destiny.

    I think on the surface Seed appears to be an excellent show with likeable characters and emotional drama but if you try to think about any of its ideas in depth, that's when the problems start to come up. The coordinator concept should have been the focus of the story since the beginning but got lost among all the loose plot threads of clones, ultimate coordinators, and most significant of all, the Seed itself.


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