Sunday, April 07, 2013

Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin, Vol.I - Activation

My copy of Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin Vol.1 has arrived, so I thought I'd give it a mini-review. In case you're unfamiliar, Gundam: The Origin is a manga adaptation of the original anime series. Viz attempted an American release, but their run ended due to low sales. Thus, publisher Vertical decided to release The Origin in a format similar to the "Aizoban" collector's editions in Japan. 

The first thing I'm going to say is, this book is absolutely gorgeous...

The book is hardcover and quite large, as you may have noticed from my comparison to the MG RX-78-2 Ver.2.0. It has 456 pages in total, with a beautifully colored covering. Indeed, it feels like a collector's item more than just a manga, which is partly why I bought it in the first place. 

Scattered throughout the manga are dozens of color pages. I think this is the most impressive part of the book; the color pages are a welcome sight and wonderfully done. Though I'm not entirely sure, they appear to be water-colored. These pages are reason enough to own this little product.

It hasn't been too long since I finished re-watching the original anime and the compilation movies, but reading this manga feels like an entirely different experience. If not for the slight differences, I read through this for the amazing artwork. As you can tell from the photos below, there is no shortage of dynamic Gundam action. It definitely beats having to watch the Gundam being drawn in wildly inconsistent blobs (television series).

There are over 400 pages, so Activation takes us from the beginning, through their journeys in space, up to where they are about to enter Earth. In the last few pages, there is an essay written by Hideaki Anno (creator of Neon Genesis Evangelion) about The Origin manga and about the influence of Gundam. It's an interesting read and a great way to cap this item off. 

I think it's great to be able to read The Origin manga, but I found that this was more of a collector's item that no Gundam fan can be without. You get so much for its low $16US price mark. So of course, if you want a piece of Mobile Suit Gundam heaven, I advise you to get a copy for yourself and see just how nice this book feels in your hands.



  1. Congrats on the purchase! Wow $16 is an absolute steal! I bought mine for $25 and I don't regret it one bit. The quality is sooo worth it. Vertical has announced no more reprints, once current stock sells out, the price of this thing is gonna skyrocket. So glad I preordered the next volumes. This is probably greatest western release of a Gundam manga ever!

    1. They still sell for $16 on Amazon the last time I checked, so people should still be able to grab it for that price for a bit. I'm also considering pre-ordering the other volumes, I know now that it will be plenty worth the purchase!

    2. I don't live in the US so got mine from bookdepo because of the free shipping. I envy you guys, I heard amazon has a preorder guarantee for locking in lowest price if things change.

  2. Only a week or 2 left till the release of the next volume!

    I personally can't wait for the later volumes which I heard will reveal more of Char and Sayla's past.

  3. Just received vol.2 of origin! The high quality of the first volume has been kept up here. I gotta say some of color pages in this one are even more amazing. For extras you get interview with Clamp and gorgeous cover gallery. Excellent release overall.


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