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YMMV: Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam
  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Quite a few.
    • Char/Quattro: Complete Jerkass who is ready to lie and try to bed Reccoa...maybe just for fun, or is he a perfectly human character that can be charismatic to many people but is useless one-on-one when it comes to stuff aside from combat?
    • Jerid: An anti-Char: blonde hair, likes red, and instead of becoming the big bad/main antagonist of the show is killed rather quickly in the penultimate episode after appearing less frequently. Or was he supposed to be a joke-rival from the start, who just scored a few lucky wins early on? Though he did ascend rather quickly, even working right next to Jamitov, and though he failed to kill Kamille he did survive numerous fights with him for a long time.... You can't promote pilots who die can you?
    • Reccoa: Did she go to the Titans because of Scirocco pulling some kind of Newtype power on her? (Scirocco demonstrates in the finale that he can Mind Rape people.) Or is she really a "combat junkie" who felt spurned by not getting more combat missions, and went to the Titans to handle her addiction instead? (She did admit to Kamille the "combat junkie" bit) Or was that bit of both?
    • Scirocco: Is he manipulating women and seizing power for his own profit, or is he acting out of more Dark Messiah motives? His speech in the final episode hints heavily at the latter... but as numerous characters comment, Scirocco can't really be predicted at all and even twenty years later, his motives are still shrouded in mystery.
      • Does his stated desire to create a world ruled by a woman stem from a belief that they're less warlike? Or did he actually have a desire to be The Man Behind The Woman, considering the fact that he's a glorified pickup artist who finds them easy to manipulate and does manipulate emotionally-unstable ladies like Sarah and Reccoa to be insanely devoted to him?
  • Anvilicious: Can be seen this way, particularly about how Newtypes are the future, and how our 'souls are bound by gravity' and that we need to move into space to both evolve ourselves as well as give the exhausted Earth some breathing room. It's just the show really shoves it in your face, but then again, some might argue that Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped.
    • The exact opposite is argued in other Gundam series such as Crossbone, it's likely just an example showing the Titan's kind of Earth first extremism is just as bad as Zeon's.
  • Base Breaker: Kamille big time. There some who find him as a good replacement to Amuro whereas others find annoying to his high angst and tanctrums. This goes so far that they believe he doesn't deserve his Fix Fic from the movies.
  • Complete Monster: Yazan Gable and Bask Om, neither of whom ever displays a single good trait, and who both take great delight in causing as many casualties as possible. Yazan participates in a Colony Drop that he knows won't work, solely to draw out AEUG pilots to kill; he admits he joined the army because it allows him to kill people legitimately, and over the course of the show racks up a truly impressive kill count. Bask, in the meantime, brutalises the colonials, arranges two enormous colony gassings, and incites the outrage of everyone, hero and villain alike. Characterised as a feral predator and a rabid General Ripper respectively, Yazan and Bask make everybody else, from Jerid Messa to Paptimus Scirocco look good in comparison.
  • Creepy Awesome: Paptimus Scirocco. He's a practitioner of Mind Rape, and yet despite that—or because of it—he's one of the most effective, well-liked villains in the franchise.
  • Die for Our Ship: Fa has been bashed often and for a long time by Kamille x Four fans. Made worse when Four actually does die, Kamille lives but his brain is fried after being Mind Raped and Fa stays with him by his side as he slowly recovers from it.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: Scirocco and Four are both really prone to this.
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: The series is far darker than the first Gundam employing serious social issues such as Kamille's poor relationship with his father. While the first episodes are dark, the last ten are Up to Eleven due to a massive Kill 'em All and a Downer Ending. Tomino disliked this which apparently led to the changes in the compilation movies.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Apolly, to an extent. He had by far the most character of the minor cast and he almost made it to the end despite being a Mook Rick Dias pilot, only dying because he was protecting Fa. Almost everyone who watched the show likes him, but it really didn't come apparent until him and the other minor Z Gundam pilots were removed in the Super Robot Wars games to make room for the Gundam ZZ pilots. Thankfully, he and Roberto help represent Zeta Gundam in SRW Z and SRW 64 as well.
    • Also Emma and Henken are still extremely popular characters in the fandom. It might have something to with the fact that the two are likable, (mostly) rational adults that don't annoy the cast and watchers, and are overall healthy mentally and emotionally. Also fans found the fact that Henken having a crush on Emma was adorable.
    • Haman Khan for being seen as awesome, piloting a cool suit, sexy, her bitchiness, being a good pilot or all of the above. She's especially popular on 4chan's mecha board where she's hailed as the Queen of /m/.
    • Also Four seems to have her fans considering she gets saved and joins the heroes in many SRW games. She even won Animage's Anime Grand Prix Award in 1985 in the category of favorite female anime character of the year.
  • Family-Unfriendly Aesop: Peace is a nice ideal, but you have to be willing to fight because the world is full of bad people who delight in tormenting others. Indeed, the Grand Finale basically has Kamille getting over his earlier "Why do we have to keep fighting?!" attitude and killing the Big Bad.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: The movies for the several changes.
  • Foe Yay: Between Haman and Char.
  • Fridge Horror: Kamille, on average, kills two people an episode.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: The Libyan word for Scirocco is "Ghibli" (Studio Ghibli didn't technically exist yet when Zeta first came out). Scirocco's self-important attitude and two-faced "male feminist" pretensions could easily be mistaken for a rather unflattering caricature of Hayao Miyazaki. Both of them even have a background in aviation mechanics.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Kamille Bidan. Four Murasame is one as well; no matter how sorry you feel for her, she's still the one who burns down Hong Kong while laughing about it in her first appearance.
    • Also, Jerid. He may have the personality of a 1980's Jerk Jock and killed Kamille's mom and Four but he also lost all the people he genuinelly cared for throughout the series because of Kamille.
  • Love to Hate: Yazan Gable and Paptimus Scirocco.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Paptimus Scirocco and Haman Khan go back and forth on this one. But the former deserves some detailing: He starts out as a glorified mercenary for the Titans, but eventually takes over the entire faction. He's also a genius inventor, a potent Newtype, and remains one of the few Gundam villains who wasn't also The Rival (most Gundam main villains being manipulative politicians rather then soldiers) who nonetheless engages the hero in a final one-on-one mobile suit duel, in a suit he personally built and design himself.
  • Magnum Opus: Along with ∀ Gundam, this is considered by many fans to be Tomino's masterpiece.
  • Memetic Mutation: "Captain Quattro, He is a CHAR!"
    • Zeta PAUNCH!
    • Kamille is also sick of adults and their lies.
    • To a lesser extent: AMELIAAAAAAA.
    • I came here to laugh at you.
    • Dissappear from this world and go where the X is!
  • Memetic Molester: Yazan "I'm gonna violate you!" Gable. There's also the early episode where he checked how "excited" rookie pilot Adol was about their mission with his hand.
  • Moe: Four and Rosamia for some.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Bask crosses this in the 3rd episode by tricking Jerid into executing Kamille's mother Hilda and somehow only gets worse further on. Reccoa has hers when she gasses a civilian colony.
    • Kamille's dad Franklin was a huge jerk and he showed it via slapping his wife Hilda when she calls him out on his crap and regarding her death very coldly, but it really shines when he tries to kill Kamille in battle despite Kamille pleading with him to not fight. It's a relief when Quattro decides to kill Franklin with his own mecha.
  • Narm: At the end of "Half Moon Love" Kamille's contorting and tortured face, after realizing Sarah had escaped, makes him look like a stoner.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: Beltorchika in her second appearance. Not only is she more mature and humble than she used to be, but she got a Moment Of Awesome via recording the brutal mecha battle whose footage Char uses in his speech.
  • Rooting for the Empire: It's not hard to root for the Titans when noting that Kamille also killed several of the people Jerid cares.
  • The Scrappy: Katz Kobayashi. Some people cheered when he crashed into an asteroid during the finale.
    • Tomino unfortunately took all of the hubris out of the scene in the Compilation Films. Originally Katz bragged about how Yazan's shots couldn't hit him, only to be caught unaware and crash into an asteroid. In the Compilation Films, the bragging is gone.
    • Reccoa becomes one of these in record time following her Face-Heel Turn and the reasoning for it.)
    • Beltochika as well, but she gets Rescued from the Scrappy Heap in hear second appearance as noted above.
    • Wong Lee, huge cheers when Judau punches him in the sequel.
  • Selfish Evil: Reccoa Londe.
  • Strangled by the Red String: Kamille and Four, whose Newtype powers cause them to fall in love within seconds of meeting. This is justified in-show (Four is badly messed up due to her Dark Andtroubled Past, Kamille was the first person to treat her like a human being and not a test subject), but it doesn't make the relationship any more real to those watching it.
    • It's given a lampshade by Chris of MAHQ. When commenting on G Gundam's Grand Finale and the epic end of Domon and Rain's love story, he points out that "They ( [Domon and Rain) are not Newtypes who magically reach an understanding of each other, they're normal people who have to develop their love over time."
    • Amuro and Beltorchika meet in episode 15. They barely talk. Then in episode 16 they are already kissing for the third time. Somebody needs to learn how to write romance apparently. Again, justified in-story: Amuro doesn't actually love Beltochika, but is using her presence as an excuse to not deal with his massive traumas.
  • Tastes Like Diabetes: The ending of the A New Translation trilogy for some.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks: The movie receives this criticism for removing the Downer Ending, changing the roles of several characters which resulted in the impossibility of the Double Zeta story.
  • Wangst: Kamille, especially. It's not even a girl's name, you know.
    • Four, Beltorchika, and Katz are all prone to obnoxious bouts of self-pity too. Then again, two of them are teenagers (and one's very mindscrewed) and the other is extremely naive in regards to war.
  • Tear Jerker: Where to even begin!?
  • True Art Is Angsty: Aside for the many deaths and dark themes, it has also one of the saddest endings in the franchise and many loves the series because of it.

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