Reviews Comments: OK Gundam series, coulda been better
OK Gundam series, coulda been better
V Gundam is often called the most depressing Gundam series from the mind Yoshiyuki Tomino. While I can certainly agree about high body count, I think that after seeing so many deaths over the course of the series you tend to get used to it and it stops becoming shocking. Eh, that's a side note though. I just think that this series has a lot of deficiencies compared to many of the other Gundam series. First thing, the Zanscare Empire. I don't think that they're quite as fleshed out an enemy as the various Zeon factions or even the Titans were. The officers of Zanscare kill our heroes with whatever weird weapons based around their interests. We get a sympathetic one-episode-wonder character every so often but the majority of the characters just seem obsessed and cruel, even more so than the Titans or many of the Zeon. The League are much more clear-cut "good guys" than any of the protagonists of previous series. I'm a big battles-type guy too, and I think that the battles in Victory are somewhat more subdued than the battles in many other series. Sure the original Mobile Suit Gundam had mostly small-scale battles, but a large amount of focus was on the tactics due to the newness of the Real Robot concept. Since by then it was now long-established, I think Tomino was trying more to highlight the visceral conflict between characters, especially between Uso and Katejina, but this (and of course all the extra spotlight on the requisite annoying kid and pet, YMMV on that though) kind of gets in the way of the action at times. This show tries a bit harder than previous Gundam shows to incorporate the Slice Of Life-type elements as well as being a bloody, gory war drama, (somewhat schizophrenically at times) and I don't think that Tomino entirely handled it properly until Turn A Gundam. The charm that allowed that show to function with those conflicting premises isn't quite as present here. Still, this doesn't blatantly declare to the heavens that "I'm a UC show!", so I think that nonfans could get into it without a lot of confusion...and fans of the blood-stained detail of UC series should identify with the well-known Gundam and Tomino tropes.
I don't know about it being the most depressing - Zeta and Double Zeta rank pretty high in that regard. Uso and Shakti seem to get a pretty happy ending once the major trauma settles down. It was pretty much a foregone conclusion that the Shrike team would be extinct by the end, and Odelo seemed to exist purely for the sake of tempting fate. I would say that Victory was the least coherent Gundam series - at least, amongst the UC shows. Character motivations are not presented clearly (when they're presented at all), and the specific reasons for any fleet moving from one place to another are either completely absent or mentioned in a "blink-and-you'll-miss-it" way. Katejina goes from matriarchal disapproval of using Uso as a weapon to outright despising him (and everyone else in the League) with no clearly established reason behind it. Gundam tends to get a lot of its mileage out of showing the eggshell-thin façade of some characters' sanity, but the lack of coherent development from sane to axe crazy made Victory Gundam a bit of a wallbanger for this troper.
comment #2732 220.127.116.11 2nd Jun 10
In order to post comments, you need to