You know, I gave Gundam AGE a chance. I really did - All the way from the inconsistent start, the mediocre middle, and the disaster at the end. Gundam AGE isn't as bad as the naysayers would have you believe: It's worse. Way, way worse. This a Gundam series that utterly fails at *being* a Gundam series, a fact made infinitely more embarrassing by copious stealing from the playbooks of it's predecessors. The first arc is a tired rehash of Mobile Suit Gundam's plot, fraught with Expy characters and designs - Yet done with none of the care or heart that made the original a classic. Plot points are obviously and insultingly telegraphed, effectively performing a shoddy play-for-play re-enactment of the original: There's a thin line between a homage and self-plagiarism, and AGE skips across it without looking back. This is, however, merely a harbinger of things to come. After a marginally improved second arc (Hampered, as always, by a lack of character development, shoddy designs, and a lukewarm climax), AGE crashes and burns *hard* right when it should be racing towards the finish line. The final arc of AGE is everything wrong with the franchise as a whole, with characters being introduced simply to be killed off for the sake of cheap tragedy, climatic fights about as exciting as a damp squib, and the absolute worst, most insultingly stupid villainous master plan of ALL TIME. You thought Gundam Seed Destiny's rehashed finale was bad? You haven't seen 'bad', until you've watched AGE. AGE's third generation is where the bad writing and diminishing episode count come together in unholy unity: You'll struggle to remember who these characters are, and why you should care about them. There's no attempt to communicate the weight of seemingly significant events, and the plothole-ridden episodes unfold with neither rhythm nor reason - Further crippled by a downright stupid protagonist, who shoehorns the dreaded cancer of UNDERSTANDING into the plot with all the grace of a sledgehammer blow to the head. It's forced and utterly contrived, a senseless trainwreck that collapses at the slightest scrutiny. Between the terrible writing, rushed and disjointed plot, watered-down designs and paper-thin characters (And let's not even get into the disgusting treatment of women), AGE is simply not worth your time.
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