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The Zodiac Alliance of Freedom Treaty

The Zodiac Alliance of Freedom Treaty is the primary antagonist at the beginning of the series. Formed in CE 50 by Patrick Zala and Siegel Clyne as a political organization, the Zodiac Alliance, ZAFT now represents the Coordinators living in the newly independent PLANT nation at L5 as a militia. Fighting for independence from the Earth nations that built the PLANT colonies they live in, their fight is far more complicated than an idealistic crusade against tyranny. Their presentation changes drastically during the course of the series, managing to become both more and less sympathetic at the same time.


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    Rau Le Creuset 

Main mecha: ZGMF-515 CGUE, AMF-101 DINN, ZGMF-600GuAIZ, ZGMF-X13A Providence Gundam

Voice Actors: Toshihiko Seki (Japanese), Mark Oliver (English), Kevin T. Collins (English HD Remaster dub)

"Suspicion, ignorance, prejudice, the dark emotions directed at those who can be loved. If love is the brightest light, then are these emotions created from the shadow it casts? Things that are different, things we don't understand, differences that foster anxiety, leading to hatred, and ultimately...confrontation."

Athrun's commanding officer and Patrick Zala's right-hand man, Le Creuset is a feared ZAFT ship captain and mobile suit pilot, renowned for his ability and his ruthlessness. He is assigned to hunt down the Archangel, and is later given command of the assaults on Alaska and Panama, and the defence of Jachin Due. Always masked, Le Creuset is an enigmatic figure with a grudge against Mu La Flaga, and his own agenda, which he keeps entirely to himself. A very dangerous man.

Le Creuset is a spoiler-heavy character, so read with caution.

  • Accent Adaptation: Gets a nice transatlantic one in English from Mark Oliver to go with his formal manners and theatrical tastes (and a very fine dub performance).
  • Ace Custom: Flies several high-end mass production mobile suits, all of them painted silver. These include a GINN High Maneuver Type, a CGUE command suit, a flight-capable DINN, and one of the new production GuAIZ's, which had just come off the line, and incorporates an OS based on the one in the stolen Gundams. The only exception to the rule is the Super Prototype Providence Gundam.
  • Ace Pilot: One of the few snipers in Gundam, he fights all of his battles from a distance to lethal effect, and unlike other pilots who seem to focus solely on ranged battles, Rau is fully capable of taking on very strong Coordinators like Kira in close range combat provided his mobile suit could keep up.
  • Affably Evil: His courteous and thoughtful nature is real. Considering he was likely raised to be exactly the opposite, it's both innate and his choice. The darkness he throws himself into and the damage he causes are equally real.
  • Alertness Blink: Experiences a Newtype Flash whenever Mu La Flaga is within a few kilometers. It is one of the few things that point to their having newtype-like abilities. Interestingly he also receives it under other circumstances than Mu's arrival, suggesting that his Newtype powers are stronger than Mu's.
  • Archenemy: To Mu and later Kira.
  • Archnemesis Dad: Rau was cloned from La Flaga's father, and meant to serve as a replacement son, he could easily be seen as fullfilling either trope.
  • Attack Drones: The Providence features the DRAGOON System, which is basically this trope. The Gundam possesses 3 large pods and 8 smaller ones, the former equipped with 9 beam guns each for a wideshot, the latter with 2 beam guns each for a normal shot. Together, the Providence carries a total of 43 beam gun nozzles.
  • Ax-Crazy: Post Sanity Slippage. Given that his series-long plan of destroying all life is about to come into fruition, why hide it anymore?
  • Badass Normal: He may be a clone of Al Da Flaga, but that doesn't give him any special abilities- aside from the hints that he and Mu may be Newtypes (see Alertness Blink above). Yet he is still good enough to fake being a Coordinator.
  • Beam Spam: The Freedom's Beam Spam is so famous that it's easy to forget that Rau's Providence is the true king of spam in SEED. The suit itself has one oversized beam rifle and a pair of beam guns built into its shield, and is fitted with a DRAGOON system that lets it remote-control eleven Attack Drones - three large, eight small. The small ones have two beam guns each, while the large ones have nine, giving the Providence a grand total of forty-six beam guns that it can fire from a dozen different directions at once. Most of the Final Battle consists of Kira trying to find a way through Rau's curtain of beam fire without losing too many important parts of his suit's anatomy in the process.
  • Berserk Button: Do not try to take off (or shoot off) his mask. We're looking at you, Mu.
  • Beta Test Baddie: He is essentially a byproduct of the Ultimate Coordinator project, created by Dr. Hibiki in order to secure the funding needed to produce Kira.
  • Big Bad: He's the one pulling both the strings of both Azarael and Patrick Zala, to drive them against each other in war of mutually assured destruction because he believes all life is meaningless and thus should be wiped out.
  • Bigger Stick: The Providence, which is from the same line as the Freedom and the Justice.
  • Bilingual Bonus: It's very subtle, but there are a couple of linguistic things in Japanese that point to Mu and Rau being related, even with the totally different personalities and without the bigger hints: they still both "Oi, oi" and "yare, yare" a couple of times, and there's Rau's "ojousan" versus Mu's "jouchan".
  • Biseinen: His mask obscures it, but he is quite the pretty boy.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: The Providence's beam saber is built into its arm-mounted shield.
  • Break Them by Talking: Rau makes a habit of this — particularly with Flay, Mu, and Kira. His effectiveness varies.
  • Broken Ace: A villainous example, to say the least.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: He is not so much "quirky" as he tends to act on his own initiative more than his superiors might wish. There is also the whole "constantly wearing a mask" thing. Damned if he doesn't get results, though.
  • Char Clone: A blond Ace Pilot with an agenda, alias, and Cool Mask who is also The Rival? Check! Gundam contractual obligations fulfilled.
  • The Chessmaster: He beautifully orchestrates events so that the Earth Alliance will fire nuclear weapons and ZAFT will fire GENESIS.
  • Clone Degeneration: Rau's telomeres are too short, leaving him effectively dying of old age at 25 years old. He is forced to take increasingly large doses of drugs to stabilise this, and is subject to seizures at irregular intervals as his body breaks down.
  • Cloning Blues: More psychological than anything else, though see above. He believes that he has no real identity, and a result his sense of self-worth is more than a little damaged.
  • Commanding Coolness: Like most ZAFT officers he holds the generic rank of "commander".
  • Cool Mask: He is a Char Clone, after all.
  • Cultured Warrior: Rau philosophizes like crazy, has the most skilled rhetoric in the show, and states he doesn't want to be mocked by future historians. He has a fierce intelligence and is clearly interested in more than being a soldier.
  • Cynical Mentor: To Athrun and Yzak. He's the opposite of idealistic, yet still rather sympathetic to unhappy, cynical Athrun and also saves hotheaded Yzak from getting killed at Alaska.
  • Darth Vader Clone: Well, aside from the Truly Single Parent, poor health, lethality, constant face covering, Dragon with an Agenda and the fact that it means "dark father" (and the Luke, I Am Your Father moment)... Both Rau and Anakin were perfectly willing to acknowledge, respect, and even love the good in the world. They just both ultimately believe that hatred is stronger. This even manages to spill over into the next series. Militarily, Le Creuset's commanding authority (and political position) is also comparable to Vader's zenith as Supreme Commander as of The Empire Strikes Back.
  • Dark Is Evil: As an iconic 'evil Gundam', his Providence uses a much darker version of the traditional red, white, and blue colour scheme (the red and blue stick, but the white is replaced a very dark grey). It makes a striking contrast with his earlier silver-gray suits, too - the fact that he starts piloting it shortly after being revealed as a nihilistic Omnicidal Maniac is almost certainly not a coincidence.
  • Death Seeker: Wants to die, with the caveat that everyone else goes first.
  • Dehumanization: An extension of his Cloning Blues above. He's physically, mentally, and emotionally suffering from the consequences of the war as well as his own body breaking down — the scene where he needs his pills after Mendel makes him seem more animal than human — and in the end claims not to believe people will ever stop trying to kill each other. He also loathes Kira for several reasons, two major being getting to live without any comparable consequences and also that Kira's true existence IS likely to set off waves of greed and violence, just like George Glenn's — not to mention the dehumanizing and philosophically horrifying ramifications of being born "exactly how someone else wants you to be". It takes Lacus's countering kindness to keep Rau's initial Breaking Speech to Kira from sticking.
  • Double Agent: Both Patrick Zala and Muruta Azrael think he is working for them. He is manipulating both to his own ends.
  • Dissonant Serenity: Rau is perfectly happy to dole out cheerful Breaking Speeches in the midst of battle. Particularly jarring in the last episode, but this may be due to his questionable sanity at the time. Mu is fond of sticking lampshades all over this.
  • Dragon-in-Chief: He acts as Patrick Zala's right hand man, though he's really the series' Big Bad and Patrick wouldn't have gotten anywhere without Le Creuset pulling his strings.
  • Drone Deployer: The Providence's main feature are its numerous DRAGOON remote weapons.
  • 11th-Hour Superpower: Upgrading to the Providence in time for the finale.
  • Enigmatic Minion: To Patrick Zala. From the beginning it is clear that Le Creuset has his own agenda, but just what that agenda is remains a secret until the end of the series. He actually remains with Zala for a surprisingly long time, only leaving after asking if he should kill Athrun, and being told it didn't matter.
  • Establishing Character Moment: He's a complex guy so he gets a few.
    • First is when he orders anti-fortress equipment used on Heliopolis, showing that he is both fine with and actively willing to destroy things.
    • Then there's the point where he talks about Athrun returning sobbing with Lacus's dead body. Not only does it flash his dark side, Athrun ended up doing exactly this in the sequel with Meer, who certainly counts as "Lacus's" body — Rau tends to be right about a lot of things...
    • And then there's the famous moment he stops going after the Archangel after Lacus yells at him and tells him off, even though someone like him could (apparently) have easily brushed her aside. Even he has limits and a continued willingness to listen, however surprising those might be.
    • Finally, the Clip Show he originally narrates has him thinking way more about people and why they are doing what they're doing than (possibly barring Lacus and certainly onscreen) any other character in the show. It's worth noting that unmasked and alone here, he is very sane and rather fond of the truth, despite later appearances.
  • Evil Counterpart: To no fewer than three characters: Mu (as his cloned "brother" and fellow Mentor), Kira (they're both results of LEGO Genetics experiments, with Le Creuset showing how badly Kira could have turned out if he hadn't been raised by the right people), and Lacus (on a purely philosophical level).
  • Evil Is Bigger: While it is the standard height for a military mobile suit, his Providence is the bulkiest Gundam in the show, with a backpack to emphasise its imposing build. Even its other weapons such as beam rifle and beam saber are larger than the standard, with a beam rifle the size of a beam ''bazooka'' and an arm mounted beam saber that is as long as an anti-''ship'' sword. Even the Freedom and the Justice, which comes from the same line of Gundams, look positively delicate next to it.
  • Evil Is Hammy: Rau is rather understated at the beginning of the series; it is not until his real plans come out that he starts Chewing the Scenery.
  • Exact Words: Overlapping with Cassandra Truth, Rau is fond of these, seemingly because his Newtype abilities come with some unspecified level of Psychic Powers. Among others:
    • Talking about Athrun's engagement at the beginning, he tells him "the blood of Committee Chairman Zala and the blood of Chairman Clyne will create a bright light for the future. I'm counting on you." By the end of the show, Siegel and Patrick have both been murdered and GENESIS has created a very bright light thanks to exploding by Athrun self-destructing his Gundam, killing Rau.
    • Lacus tells him with a knowing look that "war results may be very important, but please do not forget about all the people who die along the way". He promptly and sincerely promises her that he will not.
    • "Earth is going to burn. And the tears and screams of the survivors will fuel the next war." Consider what happens post-Colony Drop in the next show.
    • "The Chairman is having a hell of a time trying to get Lacus Clyne under control." Again, see the following series.
  • Expy: So there's a guy. Constantly wearing a mask, having issues with his health and identity and the rest of the world since birth. Manipulating a couple of jerks, perfectly willing to use threats, psychological pressure, and violence, and the only thing that seemingly has any hold over him is a little soprano ingenue with a Scandinavian father... oh, yeah, and there's also the reasonably decent guy she's engaged to. Rau's dislike of copying is probably the only reason he didn't change his name to ''Erik''. He still makes a hell of a chandelier crash shooting a light fixture at Mendel. note 
  • Faux Affably Evil: With Patrick Zala, yet he still doesn't betray him to his face. To always speak so highly of "His Excellency" and only show infrequent internal signs of displeasure, means the former may not have been entirely an act. Also that Rau is a superlative Stepford Smiler. Downplayed.
  • Foe Romance Subtext: Rau spends an awful lot of time privately thinking about or publicly praising (or actually listening to) Lacus, who has nothing to do with any of his work, goals, or machinations (and even very publicly stops him once). There's even a moment near the end of the show when Ezalia Joule calls upon "the people who love her" in Japanese, and the person we see... is Rau. Considering their characters have strong analogues to Erik and Christine Daäe in The Phantom of the Opera or Star Wars' Anakin Skywalker and Padmé Amidala, or Char Aznable and Lalah Sune from the original series, it's not even that strange.
  • Foil:
    • Mu. Rau's negative skepticism constantly plays off Mu's easygoing willingness not to question much. It's almost a case of Sibling Yin-Yang.
    • Athrun. Patrick Zala treats him like the favored son and shows Athrun what amounts to zero kindness. Due to his own past and probably because of this, Rau's generally quite sympathetic to Athrun. He's also somewhat more interested in Athrun's fiancee than Athrun is...
    • Both he and Lacus are The Philosopher with a knack for good manners and Break Them by Talking. She's accused of being a traitor and a spy; he really is a Double Agent. Neither of them is at all happy with the current state of the world and each looks for channels outside conventional government and warfare to deal with it. Rau even ends up with a pale-purple and white pilot suit that's very similar to her general color scheme. However, Lacus wants people to stop killing each other — Rau no longer believes they're capable of it.
    • And finally, to Kira. Both of them are products of the Mendel Colony, with the cloning process that created Rau having even been used to both fund and advance the Ultimate Coordinator project that gave birth to Kira. Both of them suffer through Dehumanization during the events of the series and both of them represent, in Rau’s eyes, the true hubris and lows humanity will sink to for their ambitions. Kira himself even briefly buys into the idea that he’s a monster before Lacus calms him down. Both of them also desire a change in the world, but what they desire are the complete opposite of each other, which is also why they come to the conclusion that they cannot co-exist.
  • Freudian Excuse: Rau was illegally cloned by an irredeemable rich jerk of a businessman whose first words upon seeing his new son were "This is me, right?" Said biological template went on to abandon and possibly abuse him. Add in his Clone Degeneration, and the fact that he is a dying man at twenty-five, and his actions become much more understandable, but not excusable.
  • Hates Everyone Equally: As much Fantastic Racism there already is with one side wanting to destroy the other, his hatred is focused on all sides of the conflict. In his own perspective, both Natural and Coordinator alike deserve what he believes to be their inevitable fate for all the crimes that they're capable of. This is by no means a positive example.
  • Hero Killer: Even when he doesn't pull the trigger he racks up quite a body count. His manipulations lead to the deaths of both Mu La Flaga (at the time) and Natarle and he directly kills Flay. He'd have killed Lacus and Dearka had Kira and Yzak not been able to intervene in time.
  • In Your Nature to Destroy Yourselves: Part of his philosophy; he believes he is just speeding up the process.
  • Insane Admiral: He masks it well, but at the end Le Creuset is either this or doing a damn fine imitation.
  • Keigo: Not constantly like Lacus, but Rau is essentially the runner-up; still a very formal person who uses a good bit of this, especially around or in reference to His Excellency (Committee) Chairman Zala, and who tends to default to proper speech, frequently.
  • Kick the Dog: He kills Flay just to hurt Kira, though it's highly ambiguous as to whether he knew she was on the shuttle or was just trying to destroy the thing Kira was protecting. He's also the person mainly responsible for the gruesome Cyclops incident at JOSH-A, although that's de-emphasized due to the sadism, racism, and indifference of OMNI high command.
  • Kill All Humans: His goal is to destroy humanity, be it Natural or Coordinator.
  • Large Ham: It's partly Mark Oliver's accent and performance in the Ocean Group dub, but considering Rau is basically The Phantom of the Opera IN SPACE!, he is fond of theatrical gestures and dramatic lines and monologues right from the get-go, with Mendel probably his best performance.
  • The Last Dance: The entire plot of the series is revealed to be winding down to his.
  • Light Is Not Good: He wears white, pilots mostly white mobile suits, has a name meaning "The Crucible", and eventually pilots The Providence. Definitely not a good guy.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Or rather, Mu, I am your father's clone; Kira, this is all your father's fault for getting involved with the guy and you're the lab experiment my existence paid for.
  • Malevolent Masked Man: Constantly wears a mask and is one of the worst people in the series.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Beautifully manipulates everyone, from his subordinates to his superiors to his enemies, to further his goals.
  • Mask of Sanity: Throughout the series seems to be a calm, efficient Reasonable Authority Figure who just happens to be working for the bad guys. This made the revelation of how seriously twisted he really is all the more shocking when he started ranting and raving in front of Kira and Mu. And then he goes right back to being calm and collected in public after said confrontation. Bonus points for actually wearing a mask all the time, and it only comes off when he's at the height of his crazy episode.
  • Meaningful Name: "Le Creuset" is French for "crucible". Doubly meaningful, as he chose the name himself once he discovered what he was.
  • Mercy Kill: Seems to believe he's performing one on the human species as a whole. He implicitly offers it to Kira in their final battle.
    Rau: "Why torment yourself saying, 'Eventually, someday?' How long have you been fighting with your thoughts clouded by that brand of sweet poison?"
  • Mid-Season Upgrade: Le Creuset upgrades his suits throughout the show, starting with a Ginn High Maneuver Type, than flying a CGUE, a DINN, and the first of the new GuAIZs. It's not until the finale, however, that he gains a Gundam, in the form of the Providence.
  • Mighty Glacier: The Providence is pretty bulky and thus not as agile when compared to the Freedom and Justice, but the DRAGOON Attack Drones move with enough speed to counterbalance this defect, and as his sword fight with Mu and Kira shows, the suit's still quick where it counts.
  • Misanthrope Supreme: Firmly believes that Humans Are Bastards, and therefore, need to die.
  • Morality Pet: Lacus. He praises her effusively without an obvious reason, remembers words she said months later, and she's the only one he's ever shown to listen to, even when she does it by playing dirty and threatening a This Is Unforgivable! in front of his whole command. Her status to him as a sort of Barrier Maiden means he still tries to kill her to usher in the apocalypse, but even while in a manic state of homicidal rage, he also says he enjoyed her songs (even loved, if you go by the original Japanese).
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: At Alaska, Rau tipped off Mu to the Cyclops System; Mu promptly went running to save the Archangel crew. Without Le Creuset, they would have been painfully vaporized. What keeps this from being straightforward is Rau later saying "I dearly hope the legged ship will make it out," meaning he wasn't just taunting Mu about a horrific realization, but did it deliberately.
  • Omnicidal Maniac: His life, such as it is, has left him thoroughly convinced that we've all got to go. He may only be trying to Kill All Humans, but it's quite omnicidal in context.
  • Parental Abandonment: Briefly hinted at in the anime; brought up explicitly in the adaptations.
  • Parental Substitute: Downplayed with Athrun, but he's still a more reasonable alternative to Patrick. Played straight and invoked on him by Flay, who claims he has her father's voice at their Rescue Introduction. He ends up protecting her and looking after her for quite a while, before subverting this by using her as a courier of chaos and finally killing her at the end.
  • Pet the Dog: He's kinder, more appreciative, and more understanding to Athrun than Athrun's father is, and saves both Yzak's and Flay's lives in the battle of JOSH-A, even managing to restore Flay's equilibrium to a point where she's more stable than she ever was on the Archangel. Subverted when he nonchalantly shoots her escape shuttle just to cause Kira grief, though it's unclear if he noticed she was inside the shuttle.
  • The Philosopher: See Straw Nihilist + Breaking Speech + Establishing Character Moment.
  • Playing Both Sides: Sells information to the EA while acting as one of ZAFT's top commanders.
  • Rage Against the Reflection: Catching sight of his reflection is enough to send Le Creuset into a murderous breakdown. Seeing the face of the man you hate most does that kind of thing to you.
  • Rescue Introduction: With Flay. Since the choice was "bring her" or "leave her to die", it's not really a kidnapping. Despite still being quite afraid, her time with ZAFT is the first time in the entire show Flay begins to show things like calm, propriety, and concern for others, as well as getting over the worst of her Fantastic Racism, so it doubles as an emotional rescue. Even Rau being responsible for her death doesn't change the fact that without him, she would have been equally dead without having accomplished anything.
  • The Resenter: Towards La Flaga, Kira, and the entire human race.
  • The Rival: To Mu at first, though Kira gets added eventually.
  • Sanity Slippage: In the last six episodes.
  • Self-Made Orphan: His flashbacks rather heavily imply that the fire that burned down Al Da Flaga's home was not an accident.
  • Stepford Smiler: Rau's as polite and concerned as they come. While he does give frequent vent to his internal pain and dark side, it's hard to know just how much he's really screaming unless you are Mu and Kira and trapped in a creepy lab. Lampshaded by this, when he goes from full-throttle rage and breakdown to smiling at Flay, in seconds, and earlier, when he goes from full physical breakdown to speaking pleasantly on the phone with Patrick, almost instantly.
  • Straw Nihilist: It's complicated. His life has more or less convinced him that all existence is fundamentally meaningless, but he still sees that there are virtues in humanity such as kindness and loyalty. However, as would be shown in the sequel, Rau's disappointment in and hatred of humanity kept increasing because they kept proving his worldview correct until he decided to do something about it.
  • Suicidal Cosmic Temper Tantrum: He wants to die, but he wants everybody else to go first.
  • Talking Your Way Out: Flay is once again pointing a gun at his head. Rau coolly shrugs it off, points out she'll die if she does do it, points out she's not really living much at the moment anyway, questions whether it's even loaded, and finishes breaking her by gently and correctly pointing out that she's not really a soldier (so guns and killing aren't really her thing). It's so effective, it not only keeps him alive, her attitude begins to improve afterwards. Compare Lacus with Athrun the following episode.
  • Tall, Dark, and Snarky: Tall blonde and snarky anyway.
  • 13 Is Unlucky: The ZGMF-X13A Providence.
  • The Unfettered: He wishes for the extinction of the human race, and manipulates both sides of the war to do so.
  • The Unreveal: Done in the televised show whenever he's shown maskless, even when the protagonists get to see his face. Even in the Compilation Movie, his face is only ever shown in one shot, and for just a few seconds at that. There isn't even anything odd about his face, which is the point. He only wears the mask to cover the face of the man he was cloned from, the man he despises most in the world.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Inverted. Previously calm and collected, Le Creuset suffers from some serious Sanity Slippage in the final episodes, due to his belief that his plan has succeeded. After all, if it's all going to end, why pretend to be sane anymore? It's also implied that his degeneration is causing him to break down biologically.
  • Villain Has a Point: His belief that Humans Are Bastards and that it is In Your Nature to Destroy Yourselves is a bit hard to argue against when people like Azrael and Patrick Zala are in charge and their endgames are so widely supported by their own sides.
  • Villain in a White Suit: His uniform is white, he flies pale mobile suits and there's something very off about him.
  • White Mask of Doom: That white mask doesn't signify anything good.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Le Creuset's been hurt so badly that he's convinced that we all gotta go.
  • Younger Than They Look: Quite possibly. We don't know how much his condition has sped up his aging and maturation.

    Fredrik Ades 

Voice Actors: Yasuhiko Kawazu (Japanese), Michael Dobson (English original series), Ray Chase (English HD remaster)

The captain of the Vesalius, Ades is Le Creuset's right-hand man and a capable officer in his own right. Sometimes taken aback by Le Creuset's penchant for acting without orders, Ades nevertheless follows his superior's instructions loyally. Despite his secondary role on the ship, he seems to command the respect of the Le Creuset team's pilots.

  • The Captain: She serves as the captain of the Vesalius.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Stands on the bridge, saluting Athrun, Yzak, and Dearka as the Vesalius is engulfed in flames.
  • Going Down with the Ship: Stays aboard the Vesalius while the rest of his men make their escape.
  • The Good Captain: Ades seems like a pretty good guy, despite who he's working for, and gets along well enough with his crew.
  • Number Two: Ades may command the ship, but it's Le Creuset who determines how the missions progress.

    Athrun Zala 

Main mecha: GAT-X303 Aegis Gundam, ZGMF-X19A Justice Gundam

Voice Actors: Akira Ishida (Japanese), Samuel Vincent (English original series dub), Chris Hackney (English HD Remaster dub)

"I can't exactly fight a war with a big smile on my face."

Kira's Forgotten Childhood Friend and one of ZAFT's elite pilots, he spends the first half of the show trying to capture Kira and the Strike. Much more cynical than Kira, he considers himself the realist of the two, and believes Kira is being manipulated by the Naturals. He too grow progressively darker and more bitter as the series progresses, culminating in a brutal fight between he and Kira in the middle of the series.

  • Ace Pilot: Like Kira, he quickly reaches this status, he is in fact the only one who can match Kira toe to toe for most of the series. It's also worthy to note that he is the pilot with the most potent SEED Factor, being the only one who can activate it at will in SEED, and has never even been defeated once he activates it.
  • Anti-Villain: Though not a bad person by any stretch, he's still trying to capture Kira and destroy the Archangel, until he joins the heroes later in the story.
  • Armed Legs: In addition to the ones on his arms, the Aegis has a beam saber mounted on each foot.
  • Arranged Marriage: With Lacus Clyne, as set up by their respective fathers. They both seem okay with the arrangement, even if it does end up becoming a moot point when they both fall for other people.
  • Attack Drone: The Justice's Fatum-00 can be detached and function as an unmanned support unit.
  • Battle Boomerang: The Justice has one mounted on each shoulder.
  • Best Friend: Despite ending up on the opposite sides of the barricades, Athrun remains the closest friend Kira has ever had. Whenever they team up, they move mountains together.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Le Creuset comments that Athrun is too soft for his liking and indeed it shows because Athrun never tried to fully engage Kira trying to talk with him to join the Coordinators instead. Until after the battle when Kira kills Nicol, Athrun is able to effectively ground the Archangel and go one on one with Kira, and actually destroys the Strike.
  • BFG: The Aegis's MA Attack Mode is essentially the Gundam's whole body transforming into a large cannon.
  • Big Damn Kiss: After being rather hesitant to kiss Lacus earlier in the show (and nicely doing it on the cheek), he initiates a zero-gravity one of these with Cagalli, just before the final battle at Jachin Due. It's so damn big, it's gorgeously lampshaded with Earth in the background behind them.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: Rather than hand-held, the Aegis's primary beam sabers ignite direct from its forearms.
  • Char Clone: Shares the other attributes of ''MSG''-era Char Le Creuset doesn't have, like piloting red mobile suits and a rivalry with the hero. Until he switches sides that is.
  • Combining Mecha: The Justice is comprised of two units - the main Gundam and a glider unit backpack, which gives it full-flight capabilities in Earth's atmosphere. It is armed with two beam cannons and two pairs of machine guns and can be remotely deployed to attack enemies on its own. The Justice can ride on it for high-altitude flight, and Athrun loves to ram it directly on his opponent's face in combat.
  • Conflicting Loyalty: His status as a ZAFT soldier and doing as his father wishes conflicts with his friendship with Kira and his desire of actually ending the war peacefully. He sides with Kira when he saves the Freedom with Big Damn Hero moment during the battle of Orb.
  • The Cynic: Bitter, unhappy, and convinced things are only going to get worse.
  • Dead Sidekick: Nicol, the only member of Team Athrun to show respect towards it's commander and a personal friend of his.
  • Death from Above: The Justice's backpack allows it to fly under Earth's atmosphere, and if it is riding on it, it can fly at even higher altitudes.
  • Deceased Parents Are the Best: From the little we know of Lenore, she was apparently lovely, kind, intelligent, and supportive, with the only criticism from her son while she was alive being that she worked too much (which let him spend plenty of time at Kira's house). In contrast with the very-much-alive, cold and brutal Patrick, it's no wonder Athrun remembers his mother so fondly.
  • Deuteragonist: Easily the most important character after Kira.
  • Disposable Fiancé: Ends his engagement to Lacus himself when he thinks she prefers Kira. Of course, he's had more chemistry with Cagalli the entire time, and they become an Official Couple.
  • Double Weapon: Although the Justice carries two beam sabers like other Gundams, Athrun almost always combines them together into a double-bladed beam saber.
  • The Dragon: Is Number Two to Le Creuset for most of the series' first half.
  • Dual Wielding: The Aegis features beam sabres in both wrists and both ankles, enabling it to not just dual-wield but also quad-wield. Averted with the Justice as Athrun prefers to combine its beam sabers.
  • Expy:
    • The purple haired son of the Zeon-expy dictator? He's clearly one for Garma Zabi with some elements of Char thrown in such as a predilection for red mobile suits and status as The Rival.
    • He's formed his identity around being an effective and stoic soldier, tosses out "omae wo korosu", self-destructs his Gundam and tries to do it again, and has some of his views changed due to his ongoing encounters with a princess from a pacifist nation on Earth. Athrun clearly borrowed more than a bit from Heero Yuy.
  • Forehead of Doom: The omake Super-Deformed Character Theatres even poke fun at it, in them he doesn't seem to mind though.
  • Forgotten Childhood Friend: Kira, downplayed. Athrun still has a bulletin board full of photos of Kira, but despite being his Childhood Best Friend, they haven't been in touch at all since Athrun returned to PLANT from the Moon a couple of years before. Kira doesn't know about Athrun's engagement or the death of his mother, let alone that Athrun's in an elite part of ZAFT. It causes some nasty shocks and drives much of the initial plot.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: Created the Haros and Birdy.
  • Giant Squid: The Attack Mode Aegis vaguely resembles a mecha-cephalopod and its only accessible weapon in this mode, the "Scylla" Multi-phase Energy Cannon, is named after a Greek mythological sea monster.
  • The Gloves Come Off: Against Kira after Nicol dies.
  • Heel–Face Turn: After Lacus plants some doubts about ZAFT's (and, more to the point, his father's) end goals and practices in his head, he decides to see for himself what the proper course of action is to take. This ends with him joining Kira and the crew of the Archangel.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Athrun attempts to do this when he plans to use the Justice's self-destruction to destroy GENESIS, but Cagalli talks him out of it. It's implied there's a bit of Sins of the Father in his actions.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Downplayed. He makes no protest when Lacus apparently chooses Kira. However whether it's Lacus he wants to be happy or Kira is another story.
  • Jade-Colored Glasses: Athrun has meaningful bright green eyes and a very hard time seeing the best in other people. His father is a rather odd subversion, where Athrun desperately wants to believe Patrick is better than the monstrous General Ripper he seems to have become, and ends up taking a bullet from him just to disprove his faint hope.
  • Knight in Sour Armour: Big time. He's bitter, cynical, and depressed, but he really does want to make the world a better place.
  • The Lady's Favor: Cagalli bestows her Haumea pendant on him, and he seemingly wears it for the rest of the series, as well as claiming that it saved him.
  • The Lancer: To Kira, post-Heel–Face Turn
  • Lightning Bruiser: With the Justice, which is optimized for close range combat, with two beam boomerangs to complement its arsenal.
  • Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: Both the Aegis and Justice have large shields. The Justice's shield is a bit more practical as its laminated coating makes it's more effective in protection against beam weapons.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • Athrun is Arabic, derived from the Greek erythron, which means red. He is a CHAR after all.
    • His surname is a pun of "Zara", the first heavy cruiser of its own class.
    • "Zara" also means "dawn".
  • Meet Cute: With Cagalli, alone on an island, despite the fact that they try to kill each other several times. He initially doesn't notice she's a girl, she accidentally flashes him to even more embarrassment, and they basically end up noticeably liking each other despite all the bickering, weapons, and violence. Even more noticeably, Athrun actually laughs.
  • Mid-Season Upgrade: The Justice.
  • Military Brat: His dad is the head of the ZAFT military.
  • Missing Mom: Killed in the Junius 7 incident. Her death forms a major part of his motivation.
  • Moral Myopia: Athrun goes on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge on Kira after he killed Nicol in self-defense. Kira had repeatedly told Athrun that he has friends and people he cares for aboard the Archangel, the ship that he's been pursuing and had been trying to sink. He gets better after Cagalli calls him out for it.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Makes the most of the shower and shirtless scenes that he's given.
  • Mutual Kill: Narrowly averted during his and Kira's midseason throwdown.
  • My Country, Right or Wrong: Subverted. He thought he could just continue following orders until the war was over then realized that wasn't going to happen unless he made an effort to seek it out, which is why he joined Kira.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Though he "wins" the final fight against Kira and the Strike he was very shaken up by the event and it caused him to begin questioning what he was really fighting for. Eventually, this leads to his Heel–Face Turn.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • He and Kira issue a plethora of Ineffectual Death Threats to each other in the first half of the show, but it's Cagalli at their first meeting that he coldly tells "Omae wo korosu", in Heero Yuy's famous Catchphrase.
    • Athrun makes Haros for Lacus because Amuro Ray made the much larger original one for Frau Bow in the first series; this was the first non-UC Gundam series to feature a Haro. He even wears Amuro's yellow turtleneck to visit Lacus at one point.
  • Official Couple: He ends up falling in love with and being saved by Cagalli.
  • Perpetual Frowner: Athrun rarely smiles.
  • Please Put Some Clothes On: Said word-for-word to Cagalli. Not because he's offended or upset, just highly embarrassed — like Cagalli immediately is!
  • Pro-Human Transhuman: Eventually comes around to this viewpoint.
  • Ramming Always Works: With the Justice's Fatum-00. A feint tactic Athrun likes to use is to charge the subflight unit at an enemy to briefly stagger them before derailing the backpack to let him or Kira follow-up with another attack.
  • Redemption Earns Life: Survives the war after switching over the Three Ships Alliance.
  • Reluctant Warrior: The quote says it all really. Though it needs to be said that in contrast Kira's vocal protests, Athrun generally opts to suffer in silence.
  • Romantic False Lead: For Lacus. Rau (of all people) lampshades this by being a lot more enthusiastic about her and calling him cold.
  • The Rival: Kira's.
  • Say My Name: Like Kira, he does this a lot.
  • Sky Surfing: When not attached to its back, the Justice rides its subflight unit like this.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: He's quieter about it than Kira, but yeah. The war slowly wears away at the better aspects of Athrun's personality, and by the time the sequel comes along he is pretty damn broken.
  • Shoot the Dog: He reasoned that he had to kill Kira because he couldn't convince him to join his fellow Coordinators and Kira was killing his comrades.
  • Silly Rabbit, Idealism Is for Kids!: Repeatedly accuses Kira of being impressionable and idealistic, and refuses to believe that his and Lacus' idealism will solve anything in the long run. This changes after the revelation that he's the one being used.
  • Super Mode: SEED mode, which he can even activate at will. Athrun is effectively invincible with it active.
  • Tears of Remorse: When he cries over killing Kira because Kira killed Nicol.
  • Throwing Your Shield Always Works: During his final battle against the Strike, Athrun does this to destroy the Skygrasper (and beheading its pilot, Tolle) when it attempted to intervene.
  • Transforming Mecha: The Aegis can turn into a cruiser and attack mode because of its special frame.
  • True Companions: With Kira.
  • Used to Be a Sweet Kid: Shown in flashbacks and invoked by Lacus. The bitter and cynical Athrun we all know and love is rather different from the nice kid who believed Earth and the PLANTS would never go to war.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: While he sincerely wishes to end the war with as few victims as possible, he also fights to earn the approval of his father, whose own agenda is much less benevolent. This clouds his judgement from time to time. Lacus calls him out on it towards the end of the series.

    Yzak Joule 

Main mecha: GAT-X102 Duel Gundam

Voice Actors: Tomokazu Seki (Japanese), Michael Adamthwaite (English original series dub), Daman Mills (English HD Remaster dub)

"Come out and fight, Strike! Or else this pain I feel will never go away!"

A member of the Le Creuset team, he's the most bloodthirsty and callous of the group. He has little respect for anyone he considers weak, and absolutely zero respect for Naturals as a consequence. He's close friends with Dearka, who shares many of his views, and has a developing rivalry with Athrun. He has no particular hate for the Earth Alliance (just contempt) until he's wounded during a battle with the Strike. After the resulting scarring, he develops a massive hate-on for Kira. Extremely temperamental and impulsive, he's the member of the group most loyal to ZAFT as a whole and Le Creuset personally.

  • Ace Pilot: Understated, but Yzak remains one of the best pilots in whole series (mostly held back by his lack of Bigger Stick), particularly following the finale.
  • Always Second Best: Back in his days in the military academy, he was this to Athrun. Implied to be the root of his hostility to him.
  • Anti-Villain: He's a Jerkass, but his worst Kick the Dog moments aren't intentional, and he does really care about his friends.
  • Armour Is Useless: Averted. The Armour Shroud saves Yzak's life during his final run-in with Shani Andras.
  • The Brute: Of Le Creuset's Five-Man Band: he's the most aggressive and bloodthirsty of the team.
  • Close-Range Combatant: Subverted. The Duel is spec-wise a Master of None, but Yzak's headstrong and aggressive nature means it sees a lot of melee action and was the most prone to engaging the Strike in beam saber-to-beam saber combat early on. After acquiring the Assault Shroud, which gave it far more weapon options, the Duel primarily shifted to mid-range combat until purging the armor in the final battle.
  • Disappeared Dad: In line with the rest of the Supreme Council kids (excepting Nicol), we only see one parent. We never see his father, and he's never mentioned.
  • The Dragon: To Le Creuset, following Athrun and Dearka's defections.
  • Dual Wielding: Didn't engage in this as often as one might think, but when he does, hoo boy, Yzak is beast.
  • 11th-Hour Ranger: Though he remains loyal to ZAFT for the longest of the Gundam pilots he starts growing disillusioned and horrified by ZAFT's increasing fanaticism and genocidal intent as early as the Battle of Port Panama. In the Final Battle he eventually chooses to aid the Three Ships Alliance and starts fighting alongside Kira and Dearka rather than ZAFT.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: While not very high standards, he still has them. He is ok with shooting down a fleeing enemy shuttle (after all, the enemy that runs away will come back to fight you another day), but shooting down the enemy when they are helpless and trying to surrender? That makes him frown.
  • Expy: His character design bears a striking resemblance to Henri Claytor from another one of Fukuda's series Future GPX Cyber Formula (sans the red streak on the strand of the bangs). He's also got a lot in common with Zeta Gundams Jerid Messa, in terms of his characterisation as a Hot-Blooded pilot who Can't Catch Up, and has the personality of a stereotypical Jerk Jock. Also like Jerid, Yzak initially serves to remind us that his side are the villains with his aggressive, vicious behaviour, only for the situation to change so much that by the end, he's serving as a reminder that some of them are human beings.
  • Fantastic Racism: Probably the most racist of the Le Creuset team at the beginning, but starts to grow out of this near the end, especially after Dearka's defection.
  • Give Me A Gun: In the final battle, Yzak loses his beam rifle while protecting the disabled Buster and Dearka from a completely manic Clotho. Just as the Raider closes in to finish them both, Yzak grabs the Buster's BFG and, just under the wire, puts the crazed pre-Extended out of his misery.
    Yzak: Gimme that damn thing!
  • Grenade Launcher: The Duel's beam rifle has a single-shot grenade under the barrel.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: He can go from calm to extremely angry at even the slightest provocation. He starts calming down after the Battle of Panama shows him the cost of war.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Downplayed. He aids the Three Ships Alliance, but only against the Earth Alliance.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Dearka. This gets sorely tested after Dearka defects and Yzak finds out, but endures.
  • Hidden Heart of Gold: Much of his attitude towards the rest of the team is this, especially as the show progresses.
  • Hot-Blooded: Of a particularly vicious sort.
  • How Dare You Die on Me!: Towards Nicol. Despite not having much respect towards him, he is still outraged that his comrade was killed.
  • It's Personal: With Kira and the Strike.
  • Keeping the Handicap: He gets a rather nasty scar fighting against Kira and swears to keep it until he defeats the Strike Gundam.
  • Kick the Dog: He has a few, such as mocking Nicol as a coward early in the series. His biggest is undoubtedly when he destroys a shuttle full of refugees during atmospheric reentry for being in his way, though in his (partial) defense, he didn't know it was filled with civilians. Word of God is that he was horrified when he learned the truth.
  • Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: The Duel features a shield. Yzak's not a big fan of it but it saves his life during his encounter with Shani.
  • Magnetic Weapons: The railgun attach on the Duel's shoulder. Astray supplementary material reveals that the Duel was also suppose to be equipped with a 350mm "Gáe Bulg" Rail Bazooka, but this weapon was taken from it during the Heliopolis raid and ends up being used by the Astray Gold Frame.
  • Master of None: The Duel Gundam has no specialized features and is the most ill-equipped of the GAT units because of it. ZAFT developed the Assault Shroud to help improve its performance.
  • Mecha Expansion Pack: The Duel is later equipped with an "Assault Shroud" armor that greatly increases its combat versatility.
  • Mighty Glacier: While the Assault Shroud gives the Duel more weapons and protection, there's a trade-off in decreased mobility, especially under Earth's gravity.
  • Military Brat: His mother Ezalia is a member of the PLANT Supreme Council.
  • Murder by Mistake: The reason behind his biggest Kick the Dog moment. He thought the military shuttle he shot down was filled with fleeing OMNI personnel, not civilians.
  • My Beloved Smother: To a slight degree, though mostly justified by the fact that the few interactions we see between them is just after Yzak has returned from the front lines and will be heading back into combat soon.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: A possible interpretation of his Even Evil Has Standards. After all, if you kill surrendering enemies, the rest will fight to the death, making your job much harder and costing you more casualties.
  • Pet the Dog: His reaction to Nicol's death helps to humanize him. He later yells at the Freedom and the Justice to get out of the way of GENESIS's blast.
  • Physical Scars, Psychological Scars: He keeps his disfiguring facial scar to remind himself of his need for revenge on the Strike and its pilot.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: He's certainly picked up some of his mom's Fantastic Racism. Unlike Ezalia, however, Yzak's manifests more as contempt for the Naturals than out-and-out hatred, and when he finds out about the Final Solution she and Patrick Zala have cooked up he's less than happy.
  • Redemption Earns Life: In Destiny.
  • Screaming Warrior: Most often, epic instance when he defeats Shani.
  • Shed Armor, Gain Speed: After immediately ejecting the Assault Shroud in the final battle, the Duel was able to disarm and impale the Forbidden before Shani even had a chance to react.
  • Sociopathic Soldier: A borderline Type I. He Took a Level in Kindness by the end.
  • Sour Supporter: Of Athrun. He hates the guy's guts, but he did accept Athrun's transfer to a more elite unit after defeating the Strike with an approving, if begrudging, handshake.
  • Teens Are Monsters: Early on, before he realizes the true horrors of war.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Seeing the horrors of war at the Battle of Panama shocks Yzak, at which point he starts noticeably calming down. Despite remaining loyal to ZAFT for most of the series he becomes far less hotheaded and impulsive, reacting to problems with annoyance rather than the outbursts that he was known for earlier in the series.
  • Unknown Rival: To both Athrun and Kira. The former seems to be unaware that Yzak heckles him out of jealousy, the latter knows him only as the pilot of the Duel.
  • Weak, but Skilled: Played with: The Duel on paper looks like the lowest-spec Gundam in the series, lacking any special role (Artillery, Stealth, Agility, Multi-Role), and its normal weaponry is basically the Aile Strike minus the maneuverability boost. However, the lack of gimmicks is due to the fact that it's the first of the Gundams ever produced, and is in fact Seed's version of the RX-78-2, and as a result of lacking special features and being a testbed for the other 4 suits, it both carries no weaknesses overall and is incredibly physically powerful in comparison to its siblings. note  Despite that it's clearly outclassed by its sibling units and becomes woefully underpowered during the course of the series, Yzak gives Kira no end of trouble in the first half of the series, and takes out two of the Alliance's Super Soldiers (the very same ones that could fight Kira and Athrun on even footing). The Duel eventually becomes the only one of the original five Gundams to survive the war in one piece.

    Dearka Elsman 

Main mecha: GAT-X103 Buster Gundam

Voice Actors: Akira Sasanuma (Japanese), Brad Swaile (English original series dub), Johnny Yong Bosch (English HD Remaster dub)

A member of Athrun's team, he, along with Yzak Joule, formed the crueler half of the foursome. Nearly constantly snarky and condescending, Dearka still often has to act as his more impulsive best friend Yzak's conscience. An artilleryman at heart, he prefers to engage his opponents at range, while mocking their inability to touch him.

  • Ambiguously Brown: We don't see Dearka's mom, and as a second-gen Coordinator he wouldn't have been deliberately engineered. We can presume she's a Dark-Skinned Blonde like him, since all his colleagues seem to resemble their mothers, but his dad Tad is unambiguously white.
  • Anti-Villain: Like the rest of his team. His main problem seems to be that he's forgotten that Naturals are people too. When he's reminded of this, he makes a Heel–Face Turn.
  • BFG: The Buster is an artillery mech after all.
  • The Brute: He shares this role with Yzak in Le Creuset's Five-Man Band (although he's more cocky rather than temperamental) and later becomes the heroic version in the Three Ships Alliance. With his BFG and heavily armoured mecha, Dearka is set to do some serious damage.
  • Combo Rifle: The Buster Gundam is equipped with a beam rifle and a railgun, either of which can be powered up by plugging the other gun into its back — the beam rifle becoming a beam Sniper Rifle and the railgun becoming an anti-armor shotgun.
  • Dark-Skinned Blond: Dark skin, bright blond hair.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Unfailingly surly and sarcastic, especially early on. He's still this after his Heel–Face Turn but it loses its edge.
  • Did Not Think This Through: Makes a cruel jibe about a boyfriend dying in war in front of Miriallia, whom he'd already specified was "always crying", without bothering to think that she might not be stable or what came out of his mouth might be true.
  • Endearingly Dorky: Surprisingly enough for such an abrasive jerk. Once he and Miriallia become more cordial with each other he awkwardly stutters whenever he's around her. It seems all of Dearka's time in the military left him unsure of how to deal with girls.
  • Everyone Has Standards: When he realizes that Miriallia's boyfriend had just died even he's rather ashamed at how tasteless his crack about the "stupid Natural getting himself killed" was.
  • Fantastic Racism: He and Yzak were the blatantly racist ones of the Le Creuset team, though compared to his friend, Dearka seemed to have just forgotten that Naturals are people too. He starts to realize this after Mirillia's Freak Out.
  • Heel–Face Turn: He joins Athrun in his desertion of ZAFT, having similar doubts about ZAFT when he's told what they've been up to.
  • Heel Realization: Seeing Miriallia's Freak Out followed by her saving him from Flay makes him realize what a tool he had been and that he doesn't really know what he's fighting for.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: It wasn't Dearka fighting on the front lines that almost got him killed, it was his tasteless manners, inability to keep his mouth shut, and disregard for other people.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Yzak.
  • Jerk Jock: With his high opinion of himself, low opinion of everyone else, willingness to make fun of everything, and tight partnership with fellow "mean guy" Yzak, was basically this before his Heel–Face Turn.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He's pretty nasty until he almost dies not in battle, but in enemy captivity as a direct result of his big mouth. Then he gets better.
  • Long-Range Fighter: The Buster is basically a blunt instrument. It can obliterate opponents from a distance with its powerful long range weaponry but it suffers in close quarters combat or direct engagement with other mobile suits.
  • A Match Made in Stockholm: His relationship with Miriallia has shades of this. She tried to stab him with a knife, but then seconds later had a My God, What Have I Done? and saved him from getting shot by Flay. Once Dearka makes it clear that he wasn't the one who killed Tolle, they start warming up to each other.
  • Mighty Glacier: With the heavily armored, heavily armed, but slow-moving Buster, which often makes him an easy target for Mu in his more mobile Moebius Zero and Skygrasper.
  • Military Brat: His father is a member of the ZAFT Supreme Council.
  • Oh, Crap!: When Miriallia almost stabs him when he's restrained, also when Rau turns all of the Providence's cannons on the Buster in the final battle. He lives through both, despite the Buster's extensive damage.
  • Open Mouth, Insert Foot: He has a hard time reading the situation and knowing when to keep his mouth shut. It nearly gets him killed when he unknowingly insults the recently-deceased Tolle in front of a grieving and unstable Miriallia, prompting her to attack him with a surgical knife.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: Though his racism largely extends to agreeing with Yzak's remarks. Once he meets some Naturals he starts to get over it.
  • Pro-Human Transhuman: After losing the worst of his racism.
  • Shoulder Cannon: The Buster has missle launchers on its shoulders.
  • Tall, Dark, and Snarky: He's one of the tallest characters on Athrun's initial team and one of the tallest teen-aged characters. He's also always got a quip ready.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: One possible interpretation of his relationship with Miriallia post-Heel–Face Turn.

    Nicol Amalfi 

Main mecha: GAT-X207 Blitz Gundam

Voice Actors: Mami Matsui (Japanese series), Romi Park (Japanese Compilation Movies), Gabe Khouth (English original series dub), Casey Mongillo (English HD Remaster dub)

"Mother... my piano..."

The youngest and most sensitive member of the Le Creuset Team. He looks up to Athrun, but is often bullied by Dearka and (especially) Yzak. He pilots the Blitz, and pulls his weight in combat despite the fact that he's not as skilled as the rest of the team. A genuinely Nice Guy, Nicol's only real character flaw seems to be his belief in My Country, Right or Wrong.

  • Anti-Villain: More so than the rest of the Le Creuset Team, even.
  • Blood from the Mouth: Gets a bad case while being cut in half during the Wham Episode. Ouch.
  • The Dark Chick: On a team consisting of a Manipulative Bastard, a cynical stoic, a Hot-Blooded Jerkass, and a Deadpan Snarker, Nicol's a genuinely Nice Guy. Moreover, his caution, use of the Mirage Colloid, and reliance on planning and technology (which would normally make him the Evil Genius) leave him the odd man out on a team that isn't noted for its sense of tact.
  • Evil Counterpart: Serves a very similar role to Athrun as Tolle does to Kira, though he's not "evil" in any meaningful sense.
  • Genius Bruiser: Between the rest of his teammates, Nicol is easily the most rational and collected. His Gundam, the Blitz, was also constructed specifically to handle special equipment and blitzkrieg tactics that require more strategic thinking and level-mindedness to be effectively utilized.
  • Grappling-Hook Pistol: The Blitz is equipped with a large grapple launcher on its left forearm.
  • Half the Man He Used to Be: The Sword Strike's sword slices through the Blitz's cockpit and cuts Nicol in half at the waist.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: He is killed attempting to draw away the Strike from finishing off Athrun.
  • Invisibility Cloak: His Gundam's Mirage Colloid system.
  • Nice Guy: He lacks Yzak's brutality, Dearka's surly nature, and Athrun's bitterness, generally presented as the most even-tempered, pleasant kid on the team.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: Subverted. The Blitz has a red-and-black color scheme with its Phase Shift on, but Nicol is very much an Anti-Villain.
  • Stuffed into the Fridge: Athrun decides that Kira must die after he kills Nicol.
  • The So-Called Coward: Yzak calls him a coward and he's mostly quiet, self-effacing and unsure of himself as well as more reliant on technology than the others, but he soloed Artemis by himself. Yes, he earned that red uniform.
  • Token Good Teammate: He lacks Athrun's cynicism, Dearka's snark, and Yzak's anger issues, making him the only member of the team who's even remotely capable of being objective.
  • Too Good for This Sinful Earth: How Athrun thinks of him afterward.
  • Villains Out Shopping: Nicol is an avid piano player and wishes to perform in a symphony one day. It'll never come to pass.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Green hair.

    Rusty Mackenzie 
One of the elite pilots of Athrun's team, he only has a few minutes of screen time as he is killed in the first episode.

  • Boom, Headshot!: How he is killed.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: He goes in with several ZAFT Commandos and Athrun's team which he is a part of during their raid on the Colony of Heliopolis. He only has a few minutes of screen time and is killed by an Earth Alliance soldier, Athrun does avenge his death by killing said soldier however.

    Lacus Clyne 

Voice Actors: Rie Tanaka (Japanese), Chantal Strand (English dialogue, original series Dub), Jillian Michaels (English singing, original series dub), Stephanie Sheh (English HD Remaster dub)

"I'd like you to inform them: from now on, Lacus Clyne will be singing the song... of peace."
Her classic look, with Pink-chan.

The civilian daughter of PLANT Supreme Council Chairman Siegel Clyne, Lacus is an extremely popular singer and ceremonial figure for her country, and is Athrun's fiancée. Not actually affiliated in any way with ZAFT — something she goes to great lengths to point out — early in the series she is picked up by the Archangel and meets Kira, an event which will come to define the entire course of the war. The eventual leader of the "Clyne Faction" (those moderates who support her father's policies), Lacus is a pleasant, friendly, idealistic girl, who is a heck of a lot smarter than you'd think.

  • 100% Adoration Rating: Lacus is so beloved in PLANT that people are in agonies of confusion when she appears to be an OMNI spy and traitor. Rau discusses this when he points out how difficult she's making the lives of Patrick and Ezalia, telling Yzak and the rest of the team that's exactly why the opposition has her. In English he explicitly says "people believe she can do no wrong". It all ends up as quite a bit of Foreshadowing for the next series.
  • Adrenaline Makeover: Twice. Her outfit at the theater to confront Athrun and her Eternal commander look for the last act are completely different than her earlier, "normal" look, and both are done when she and everyone around her are in great danger.
  • All-Loving Hero: She holds no grudges and instead shows compassion to everyone.
  • Arranged Marriage: With Athrun Zala, only child of her father's best friend, before the war broke out, though in the end it's rendered moot when they end up with different people.
  • Armor-Piercing Question: She uses these the way the rest of the cast use physical weapons — equally devastating. "Is it your intention to make this a battlefield in front of me, the national memorial representative? Can you not hear me?" does the trick with Rau.
    Lacus: "What is it that you believe in and fight for, Athrun? Is it that medal you received? Or your father's orders?" Also "If I am your enemy, will you shoot me, Athrun Zala, soldier of ZAFT?"
  • Badass Long Robe: She wears a sleeveless gold-trimmed white one over her Purple Is Powerful wrap minidress when commanding Eternal, a foil to ZAFT's Badass Longcoats.
  • Beautiful Singing Voice: As seen in Informed Ability, it's on display more than her actual career as a performer.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: She prefers to be friends with everyone, because you do not want to make an enemy out of her. Given how the show establishes her ability to engineer the collapse of murderous dictatorial regimes, Rau was probably wise to be seen putting this into practice.
  • Big Fancy House: It's especially a sign of high status in the PLANTS which are man-made habitats.
  • Big Good: Inherits the position after her father is assassinated and she uses his power base combined with Orb's to Take a Third Option in the war between OMNI and ZAFT.
  • Break Them by Talking: She does this to Athrun, very dramatically, and to the other master of this, Rau, in a much earlier and shorter fashion.
  • Commanding Coolness: She hijacks and runs the Eternal in the last arc, and debuts her own purple outfit and white-and-gold long coat to go up against ZAFT, as Rau's analog, though Waltfeld is actually The Captain.
  • Cry into Chest: After her escape from ZAFT and her father's demise, she collapses in tears into Kira's chest.
  • Dangerous 16th Birthday: A slight variant. In PLANT, the age of majority is 15, and Lacus's 15th birthday prior to the series is also what's known as The Tragedy of Copernicus — a massive bombing on the Moon that killed most of the UN, would have killed her father if not for a delay, and generated OMNI. It kickstarted the war and provided the basis for the Bloody Valentine nine days later. Downplayed with her 16th birthday, which she spends in Earth Alliance custody onboard the Archangel — far from an ideal situation, although the day itself is uneventful.
  • Disposable Fiancé: She becomes very close to Kira despite being engaged to Athrun, though it's shown her relationship with Athrun was friendly, but awkward and strained due to his misplaced patriotism and their general lack of chemistry.
  • Dissonant Serenity: Her calm and unruffled nature becomes this at a couple of points, notably at White Symphony when people are being shot all around her, and she doesn't blink or flinch.
  • Elemental Motifs: Water and air. Neither of which are in space, ironically, but then, none of them are. Her name means "lake" and her second (and what can be viewed as her image) song is called "Proof of Water", however, she's also a canon Aquarius ('water-bearer'...which is an air sign), and her first song is called "In This Quiet Night", seemingly associated with stillness and air. She also has heavy mermaid and Disney Princess allusions, which cover both.
  • Establishing Character Moment: A few early on.
    • First, asking Mu if he knows who her father — a world leader — is because he mentioned his name, giving us the impression she is ditzy and a little too innocent. While persistently wandering around the Archangel may have also appeared ditzy and innocent, it also showed a subtle willingness to continually and casually break rules — and get away with it.
    • More revealingly is when she strips in front of Kira, showing that she also intimidates others with ease and basically produces the unexpected no matter what anyone thinks of her.
    • Which means reprimanding Rau of all people later in the same episode for trying to start a battle isn't really surprising, since she already showed us that she is more than she appears.
  • Excellent Judge of Character: She proves to be this despite her young age, in addition to being an inspirational political figure. Throughout the series, she has entrusted power to several unlikely individuals (most notably, Kira, a soldier who had fought against her country and her people), but has yet to experience a serious betrayal of her trust.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: Lacus wears her normal Rapunzel Hair in giant pigtails to confront Athrun at the White Symphony theater, complete with a different hairclip. Her command outfit for Eternal involves an elaborate ponytail with a braided crown, and we don't see her hair down again for the rest of the series.
  • Expy: The daughter of a high-ranking government official who espouses her family's pacifist beliefs, has strong relationships with the lead character and his rival, and is an inspirational figure to the general public? She's a more idealized, active, and cunning Relena Darlian, if Relena were also a popular singer instead of an actual princess.
    • She's also the daughter of the local leader, tends to explore and "float" around a lot, has a Beautiful Singing Voice, something permanently in her hair, dresses which feature "fins" (as seen above), a big dramatic moment sitting on a rock, and another one after which we see She's Got Legs. She has strong shades of The Little Mermaid, and it continues in the sequel. She's basically a Disney Princess in a Gundam show.
    • It should be pretty obvious that her status as an idol-singer is more or less inspired by Lynn Minmay from Super Dimension Fortress Macross, something Fukuda attested to.
    • She's also the slightly mysterious military-outsider with the strongest emotional abilities in the show, who appears to be thinking of anything but war. Her introduction is a Shout-Out to Lalah Sune from the original series. Unlike Lalah, though, Lacus is no follower and in fact quite the independent ringleader. She also survives.
  • Fire/Water Juxtaposition: The Water Is Womanly to Cagalli's Tomboy Princess fire, although they don't actually interact in this series.
  • Foe Romance Subtext: Although he seems to think more highly of her than... anyone, how Lacus and Le Creuset know each other well enough for him to take orders from her (and be on a no-honorifics basis) is never elaborated. It's also noteworthy that unlike Zala or Azrael or Djibril or Durandal in the sequel, she actually speaks to him, which is a mark of favor. She also has one of her only Oh, Crap! moments when she deduces he's come after her at Mendel and ends up looking completely shocked and crying when he dies.
  • Foreshadowing: Orders Le Creuset of all people to stand down during her rescue, providing an early hint as to just how much steel she has in her.
  • Friend to All Living Things: Birds flock to her hands, both in her music video and while she's having tea.
  • Geisha: Along with her Yamato Nadeshiko side, as a highly-trained "arts person" who occasionally dresses sexy with her Unlimited Wardrobe, spends a lot of time in an otherwise all-male environment being persuasive, counseling, or convincing, or does other "daring" things outside yamato nadeshiko scope, she's this.
  • Girly Girl: Not in the 'fashion and makeup' sense like Flay, but she does exaggerate both Pink Is Feminine (Athrun mentions in an audio drama that her In-Series Nickname at 14 by her fans was "the Pink Fairy", and she later gets called a princess) and Long Hair Is Feminine (to Rapunzel Hair), never wears pants, and is highly gracious, graceful and soft-spoken.
  • Girly Skirt Twirl: Combines this with some Airplane Arms in the Eye Catch for some Spectacular Spinning.
  • Giving Them the Strip: Has to put on a spacesuit in order to escape the Archangel. Which requires removing her elaborate multilayered dress. Which she nonchalantly does... in front of Kira. Taking her clothes with her ended up getting her Mistaken for Pregnant.
  • Graceful Ladies Like Purple: It tends to be overlooked in all the pink, but her iconic first outfit has multiple shades of this, her resistance dress appears purple-trimmed in dim light while she's broadcasting, she wears a purple hooded cape while she's in hiding, and her Commander wrap mindress on Eternal is a pastel shade or two. Certainly also a case of Purple Is Powerful.
  • Guile Heroine: Lacus isn't a fighter, but she doesn't have to be. With her political connections, oratorical ability, and flawless public image she's set to completely upset Patrick Zala's agenda.
  • Heroic BSoD: She briefly falls into despair shortly after Siegel is murdered.
  • Hidden Depths: She appears innocent, unfailingly kind, and a bit naive. She really is that kind, but that naive exterior hides a sharp mind and an iron will that few see coming from her. The depths start when she has no problem taking her clothes off in front of a relative stranger, working the communications in a mobile suit she's never seen before, or exercising military authority she isn't even faintly entitled to, and her hits just keep coming. She's less full of surprises than consists of them.
  • Hidden Eyes: Happened to her in the original version, when she told Kira that her father was killed. Subverted in the HD Remaster.
  • Idol Singer: Very popular in the PLANTS and she uses that popularity to her advantage.
  • Informed Ability: Downplayed. She's said to be the most popular singer in PLANT. Although she does have a beautiful, professional, influential voice, she never performs for an audience, despite speaking of the first time she sang in public. This gets defied to heck and deconstructed in the sequel with her imitator Meer.
  • The Ingenue: She seems sheltered and none-too-bright, at least at first, but there's more to her than that..
  • Keigo: She's kind and has a noticeably offbeat and quirky side, but Lacus speaks incredibly formally, distantly, and deferentially in Japanese, period. The one exception is her brief monologue in her head at the end of the show. The first English dub attempted some of the same distant effect between her and other people by making her sound much younger.
  • Lady and Knight: She's the Bright Lady to Kira's White Knight. She's his chaste relationship and inspiration. She provides him with a shiny new mobile suit like a medieval romance counterpart might distribute plate mail, although she calls it a "sword". See Meaningful Name.
  • The Lady's Favour: She gives Kira a ring before the final battle. The compilation movies imply that it might have been her mother's.
  • The Leader: Charismatic Type to the Clyne Faction and Three Ships Alliance.
  • Magic Skirt: Despite having a very short skirt (in space) at the end of the series, she only has a Panty Shot in the Compilation Movie.
  • Martial Pacifist: She wants this war over now, and if that means leading her own army against ZAFT and the Earth Forces, so be it.
  • Meaningful Name:
  • Missing Mom: Unlike Athrun's, hers is simply never mentioned. Lacus does bring her up when consoling Kira in the compilation movies.
  • Mistaken for Pregnant: An inadvertent Pillow Pregnancy, as a result of needing to stuff her clothes in her spacesuit. Sai makes the obvious "how far along is she?" bad joke.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • In episode 20, Lacus draws a ∀ Gundam-like moustache on her navy-blue Haro.
    • Her exit from her escape pod at the end of episode 7 and the beginning of episode 8 was a nod to Lalah Sune's exit from Char's shuttle in episode 34 of Mobile Suit Gundam. Given how both characters appeared eccentric only to be far more than they appeared, this may have been foreshadowing.
    • Lacus wears a minidress with long sleeves and bare legs to command Eternal. Why? Partly because it's what her fellow "Nice Girl with a Haro" Frau Bow wore as a Custom Uniform on White Base in Mobile Suit Gundam. Lacus's even features a large bow. Her ultimate outfit in the sequel features two. Her official birthday (February 5) is the day before Frau's semi-official one.
    • Her getting a moody, powerful Newtype to do a lightning-quick 180 while seemingly being pregnant is a Shout-Out to an older Frau doing the same thing to Amuro in Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam. Rau even finally calls her on a Full-Name Basis, like Amuro (and others) tended to do.
  • Nerves of Steel: She's perfectly calm and tranquil when she's introduced having wound up with the enemy forces after being shoved into a one-person life pod without a spacesuit, and she's not fazed when Athrun tracks her down in her outlaw period with a Dramatic Gun Cock, or when a rain of gunfire subsequently starts. Lacus is a very cool customer, especially for a civilian teenager with no apparent military training.
  • Nice Girl: A pleasant and friendly girl, but Beware the Nice Ones. She manages to be strikingly gracious and kind almost without exception.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: She certainly can make mistakes. She wasn't wrong to take a stand against Patrick, but her life as an outlaw and, perhaps, never exonerating her father from it, inadvertently got him killed. Lacus is incredibly upset Siegel was killed, but we never really learn how she feels to have paid such a heavy price for her actions, or be directly responsible for provoking Zala's murderous rage. Even her Exact Words, "My father died", rather than "was killed" or "murdered" are a bit vague and distant.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Mitsuo Fukuda said in a 2003 interview that Lacus was based on the late British actress Audrey Hepburn.note  What makes it even better — although coincidental — is that while Hepburn was a superstar for her talent, beauty, and poise, it's now also known that a teenaged dancer Audrey participated in La Résistance activities in the occupied World War II Netherlands that Those Wacky Nazis would have happily shot her for.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: More like "Obfuscating Innocence", her biggest advantage is that virtually everyone underestimates her. While it's never stated, it's hard to believe that she didn't deliberately cultivate that image.
  • The Ojou: Despite being the daughter of a democratically elected leader, she lives on an enormous fancy estate and is treated as if she were royalty, never using anything but Keigo herself. It helps that she's also a national celebrity in her own right.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: The only time Lacus is ever shown as angry in this series, she's about to get Rau to back off the Archangel (and not use her as a pawn, incidentally).
  • Phantom Thief: Fitting for her Guile Heroine status, Lacus is a kind, sweet, very well-bred young lady who manages to mastermind the theft of ZAFT's newest mobile suit, a warship, and her ex-fiancé, surviving weeks of a nationwide dragnet in-between the first two. Unfortunately, her father was not so lucky.
  • The Philosopher: Her question "What is it that one should be fighting [for]?" is picked up by a number of other characters, and becomes largely the Arc Words of the series. She also has a very serious internal monologue brooding about humans, conflict, and bloodshed just before the end, which prompts her to go into Super Mode.
  • Plucky Girl: Going into exile doesn't dampen her spirit. Though she understands the severity of the situation, she doesn't give up.
  • Politically Active Princess: A Foil to Cagalli; Lacus isn't actually a princess but is highly interested and influential in not only PLANT politics but global ones. Cagalli is a princess and an heiress to boot, but is more at home in battle than with negotiations, let alone politics.
  • Pro-Human Transhuman: Lacus wants a peace treaty that's good for Natural and Coordinator alike.
  • Rapunzel Hair: She has the longest hair of any major character. It changes a bit in length and especially texture Depending on the Artist and medium, but usually starts below her hips. As you can see from the picture, she can easily sit on it.
  • Rescue Romance: Her relationship with Kira developed from this. In fact, both traded roles of rescuer and rescuee in some points.
  • La Résistance: Fights the Zala dictatorship in PLANT and continues to coordinate the opposition when her homeland is no longer a place she can either recognize or accept. She's also the Voice of the Resistance, quite naturally.
  • Robot Buddy: Her pink Haro from Athrun, nicknamed "Pink-chan"/"Mr. Pink". She refers to Pink-chan as her friend, and like Lacus herself, there's a bit more to him than meets the eye — he's much sassier than her, can unlock doors and later serves as a Hastily Hidden MacGuffin. In episode 20, Lacus has an entire collection of different colored Haros in her house, including the aforementioned navy-blue Haro. Several of them make an appearance in the 3rd and 4th OP.
  • Romantic False Lead: For Athrun. She's a lovely girl, they like each other fine and they're an important genetic match, but they both have stronger and easier feelings for other people.
  • Rose-Haired Sweetie: She's innocent and naive (at first), and she's definitely nice and sweet. Bonus points for being engaged to blue-haired Athrun before the war.
  • Second Love: Subverted. Unaware of Kira's relationship with Flay, Lacus expresses great affection for him, but Kira is ultimately too traumatized to do anything other than gently return her earlier cheek kiss.
  • Sexy Backless Outfit: The animation opted not to focus on it, but merchandise makes it quite clear her "Mizu no Akashi" performance dress is this. It also has large slits in the skirt that foreshadow She's Got Legs.
  • Shameless Fan Service Girl: While Giving Them the Strip, she does it in front of Kira with absolutely no hesitation. Kira (on the other hand) is quite embarrassed.
  • She's Got Legs: After wearing long or relatively-long skirts for most of the show, she breaks out a minidress to lead Eternal and the Three Ships Alliance.
  • Signature Headgear: Lacus has her distinctive and famous barrette.
  • Silk Hiding Steel: Despite her initially seeming to be The Ingenue, she's made of sterner stuff than most of the rest of the cast.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Her relationship with Kira, the knight in gundamium armor.
  • The Smurfette Principle: She's the only teenage female or major character on the Athrun/PLANT side and the only girl or woman seen in her resistance faction or on the Eternal, and it applies even after the compilation movies add The Voiceless Shiho Hahnenfuss to ZAFT.
  • Super Mode: SEED Mode, though the seed-burst animation for her isn't shown, implying that it might be something even more mysterious.
  • Take a Third Option: Runs the Clyne Faction and later The Three Ships Alliance as a counter to Patrick and Azrael.
  • Talking Your Way Out: Athrun once had her at gunpoint and she convinced him not to shoot or capture her.
  • This Is Unforgivable!: As an All-Loving Hero she point-blank tells Rau Le Creuset (and everyone else assembled there, using an open channel) she will not forgive him attacking the Archangel "in front of" (and by using) herself, the national memorial representative. It works.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: The Girly Girl to Cagalli's Tomboy because of her feminine style of dress and desire to talk things out peacefully if possible.
  • Tomboyish Name: Despite her extremely Girly Girl image, lacusnote  is an unequivocally masculine word in Latin.
  • Übermensch: Begins her trek towards this status in SEED. While everyone else tries to play by the cynical realpolitik of the Cosmic Era, Lacus flat out rejects the premise, choosing instead to overhaul the series' morality and try for something better.
  • Unlimited Wardrobe: Lacus has at least half-a-dozen outfits in the show. Not necessarily more than anyone else, but her style flair makes it seem like more. It's really notorious when she changes on her way to hijack Eternal.
  • Voice of the Resistance: Under the Zala regime, she sends out messages of hope and defiance. She's seen ushered to and from safe houses by subordinates a couple times.
  • Water Is Womanly: It's probably not a coincidence that singing idol Lacus wears her most revealing, most elaborate outfit to perform "Proof of Water".
  • The Wonka: A female version. She's the only civilian in a cast full of military in a world at war, and tends to constantly astound, startle, and baffle everyone around her. While she operates almost entirely idiosyncratically and quite enigmatically, Lacus does make a lot of sense to people... eventually. She actually becomes the voice of reason and the show's moral compass, if not quite the Only Sane Man.
  • Yamato Nadeshiko: Unfortunately for the villains, the Clyne family business that Lacus was very devoted to was not singing, but politics. And Lacus will dare to use her wits if you are a warmonger like the leaders of both sides are.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are!:
    • She does this every time Kira hits an emotional breaking point in her presence. First when she encounters him wailing and screaming on the Archangel because of his difficult and loathed position as an OMNI soldier, and she reveals she knows Athrun and sympathizes that he and Kira are both good people and it does make the situation very sad, then after recuperating at her mansion after his duel to the death with Athrun, and again after Rau reveals Kira's dehumanizing origins as the Ultimate Coordinator and his and Kira's Not So Different status as indifferent and mistaken lab products from the same funding stream. The last is made more explicit in a scene in the compilation movies, where she expresses that he has a right to exist and be himself, and she's been made happy by his existence and presence, thus he's his own person and more than Rau's negative summary
    • This is also the gist of her Breaking Speeches. She gets both Rau and Athrun to reconsider what they're doing and temporarily or permanently choose the more moral alternative.
    • She also does this with some success to the entirety of PLANT, repeatedly urging forgiveness and coexistence with the Naturals in speeches while she's underground.

    Patrick Zala 

Voice Actors: Kinryu Arimoto (Japanese), Andrew Kavadas (English original series), Marc Diraison (English HD remaster)

"We Coordinators are very different. We should view ourselves as a completely new species. There's no reason to coexist with Naturals."

Athrun's father, Patrick Zala was one of the founding members of ZAFT alongside Siegel Clyne. At the beginning of the series, he's the PLANT Supreme Council representative for December City and Defense Committee Chairman, overseeing the Coordinator armed forces. Patrick is a stoic but driven man, throwing himself into the execution of the war to the exclusion of all else — including his son. Patrick's fanaticism comes from the loss of his wife Lenore in the Bloody Valentine tragedy, which has left him with a deep-seated hatred of Naturals. He believes that Coordinators are a new species, distinct from (and superior to) Naturals.

  • Abusive Parent: In the second half of SEED, he shoots Athrun and tries arresting him.
  • Archnemesis Dad: To Athrun by the end of the series.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: It's possible to feel some pathos for Patrick as he dies, unable to let go of his hate even in the end.
  • Bad Boss: Don't question Patrick's orders. It won't end well. In fact, don't talk back to him at all.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: He's the leader of ZAFT and appears to be in a Big Bad Ensemble opposite Blue Cosmos leader, Muruta Azrael, but they're actually Rau Le Creuset's Unwitting Pawns.
  • Blood from the Mouth: After being shot in the back.
  • Broken Pedestal: Athrun is initially shown to have a high amount of admiration for Patrick. However, the pedestal is eventually shattered when Athrun learns about the full extent of his madness.
  • Casting Gag: Kinryu Arimoto was Mr. Winner in Mobile Suit Gundam Wing, and here he gives a master class in "How Definitely Not To Treat Your Only Son After His Mother Dies". Athrun even calls him the rarer and extremely formal chichi-ue, just to drive the point home.
  • Cycle of Revenge: Throws himself into the war effort because of a nuclear attack that killed his wife, only to ultimately become desperate enough to order construction of technology to undo anti-nuclear defenses and create a gigantic nuclear-powered doomsday weapon.
  • Expy: He's a slightly more sympathetic Gihren Zabi, right down to the outfit, the politics, and oratorical skill. The only real difference is that Gihren's Master Race philosophy is a facade, while Patrick's paranoia and bigotry is very real.
  • Fantastic Racism: He really hates Naturals.
  • Final Solution: He intends to fire GENESIS at Earth, wiping out all the Naturals.
  • Foil: Against his former Best Friend, the much calmer and more pragmatic Nice Guy Siegel Clyne.
  • Founder of the Kingdom: Started ZAFT as a political organization with Siegel Clyne and helped establish PLANT's breakaway.
  • General Ripper: This is what happens when one of them becomes Supreme Council Chairman. Ironically, Patrick was less bloodthirsty and somewhat saner when he was just Defense Committee Chairman/in charge of ZAFT.
  • The Generalissimo: He continues to appear in his uniform as Chairman, and effectively transforms PLANT into a military dictatorship, using the army to suppress all dissent.
  • Glorious Leader: He becomes closer and closer to the archetype as the show progresses and he becomes convinced that only he can save his people.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: When his Bad Boss tendencies backfire on him. He shoots one of his underlings for questioning his orders. Said underling, wounded but alive, draws his own sidearm and kills Zala with it.
  • The Horseshoe Effect: He is just as extreme, hate-filled, and dangerous as Azrael, the anti-Coordinator Natural. This is Lampshaded by Uzumi Nara Athha.
  • Hypocrite: He rages at Naturals as barbaric monsters after Blue Cosmos orders a nuclear attack destroys the Boaz space fortress. Hours later he kills thousands of Naturals using the GENESIS cannon and was more than willing to fire it at Earth, which could have potentially wiped out all life on the planet. Furthermore Zala admitted previously that they had developed N-Jammer Canceller technology specifically to use Genesis against Naturals in the first place.
  • Insane Admiral: CINC of the army and a genocidal General Ripper.
  • In the Back: He's shot from behind by a man he failed to kill.
  • Jade-Colored Glasses: Like Athrun, literally. Patrick's green eyes and worldview are both much, much darker, however.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Jerk: They keep setting you up to think that Patrick's going to show his nice side, only to promptly disappoint you.
  • Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: First he runs against, and defeats, his old friend and former political ally for the position of PLANT Supreme Council Chairman. Then he has said friend executed for believed treason. It only gets worse from there.
  • Karmic Death: He gets shot in the back by a wounded man he's just tried to murder.
  • Knight of Cerebus: What we see of both sides of the war made both of them look sympathetic early in the series. When Patrick shows up, we start to see both sides are being led by genocidal lunatics who will settle for nothing less than the complete destruction of the other.
  • Knight Templar: He genuinely believes that only the most extreme methods can save his race.
  • The Lost Lenore: His appropriately named wife was killed in a nuclear attack on Junius 7 a year prior to the start of the series. He is not over it.
  • Love Makes You Crazy: He keeps a picture of Lenore and a younger Athrun on his desk while he destroys everything around him in a search to regain some peace, including his relationship with Athrun. Lenore would probably not be pleased by this, to say the least.
  • Love Makes You Evil: His Start of Darkness was his wife Lenore's death.
  • Master Race: Up to Eleven. Patrick views Coordinators as a full on Superior Species, and sees the Naturals as deserving only of extermination.
  • A Nazi by Any Other Name: Brags about Coordinators being a Master Race that deserves to rule the world? Plots the genocide of his Natural adversaries? Wins an election and then promptly suspends the democratic process? Why yes, he is a Nazi. Being Gihren Zabi's expy will do that.
  • Never My Fault: He blames Lacus and her father for his strategy to end the war failing, because he can't admit that Naturals outsmarted him. His pride won't even let him just blame the Naturals themselves.
  • Non-Action Big Bad: Of ZAFT. Patrick may be a military man, but he's never in combat, is only ever shown in a command role and fails to do a proper job the one time he tries to kill someone.
  • The Paranoiac: From his birth and upbringing as a "hidden" illegal Coordinator in the Atlantic Federation to what we see of him on-screen, everything about Patrick seems to fuel this. From a character only needing three criteria to qualify (and revenge, suspiciousness and being a Jerkass are there from the start), Patrick may hit all seven by the end of the series. Unfortunately, one of the only people he trusts is betraying him, but it's Rau, not Siegel. So much for those secret late-night meetings...
  • Perpetual Frowner: More so even than Athrun. In his time on screen Patrick never genuinely smiles. Not even once.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: He is basically foaming at the mouth when he talks about the Naturals, and how terrible they are as a whole, and why all of them must pay for the crimes of a handful.
  • President Evil: The voters wanted a hardline military leader. They got a genocidal madman.
  • Propaganda Machine: He has one that's engaged in a constant battle with Lacus' Voice of the Resistance.
  • Putting on the Reich: All of ZAFT does this, but it's most noticeable on Patrick.
  • Remember the Alamo: Invokes the Bloody Valentine on multiple occasions to justify his extreme militarism. That he lost his own wife in the attack only lends his arguments more gravitas.
  • Rousing Speech: Gives a great one on the anniversary of the Bloody Valentine.
    "Who exploits the Coordinators?!"
  • Smug Snake: Fueled by his Fantastic Racism and belief that Coordinators are a Superior Species.
  • Start of Darkness: He was Siegel Clyne's Best Friend for two decades prior to Lenore's death at Junius 7.
  • Superior Species: He's convinced that Coordinators are far superior to "unevolved" Naturals.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Though less of a pawn than most, Rau Le Creuset is using him to help drive humanity to extinction.
  • Villain Has a Point: Prior to SEED and at the start of the war, Chairman Clyne already swore to resist the Alliance to the death. When Patrick reminds the Supreme Council members with a Rousing Speech that PLANT was oppressed, then attacked, innocent people died, they need to protect themselves, and they can't do that without fighting, even beleaguered Siegel has nothing to say.
  • We Have Reserves: Downplayed, compared to Azrael, but there are indications during the series that Patrick also possesses this mindset, as Operation Spit Break was already a risky gamble that the council only approved because they didn't know the target was JOSH-A, precisely because the projected casualty rate was considered too high. Siegel's comments to him, while mostly being about the low birth rate issue, are still also clearly intended to call him out on this. And then there's his decision to fire GENESIS despite ZAFT troops being in the line of fire.
    Siegel: "Patrick! Lives are born into this world! Not manufactured!"
    Patrick: "Don't you see that mindset is grossly outdated?"
  • We Used to Be Friends: Foils to Athrun and Kira, Patrick and Siegel were Best Friends of more than twenty years. This is All There in the Manual because they fall out so fast in the actual show, this is nearly all that remains, and it's because of this that Patrick takes Siegel's perceived "betrayals" so hard that he has him executed.

    Siegel Clyne 

Voice Actors: Yosuke Akimoto (Japanese), Don Brown (English original series), Christopher Sabat (English HD remaster)

"You still fail to grasp the underlying truth, Patrick. We [Coordinators] didn't evolve."

Siegel Clyne is Lacus's father. He helped found ZAFT with Patrick Zala, and is the representative from Aprilius City and PLANT Supreme Council Chairman at the beginning of the series. Leader of the moderate faction of Coordinators, he and his allies believe in coexistence with the Naturals, but they're steadily losing ground to the radical faction that favours all-out war. Eventually voted out of office and replaced by Patrick Zala, he attempts to remain a voice of reason, earning him the enmity of the radicals.

  • Character Death: Patrick's goon squad guns him down.
  • Beleaguered Bureaucrat: Unlike Patrick Zala, he's a pure politician, not a soldier. His contribution to the war effort is to try to ride herd on the PLANT Supreme Council's rather quarrelsome members.
  • Founder of the Kingdom: Of the original ZAFT organization with Patrick Zala and the newly independent PLANT nation.
  • The Heart: Of ZAFT as a whole since he insists on diplomacy, cooperation and rational thinking as opposed to hatred.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Well, as far as harm goes. The execution-style hit put out on him by Patrick is a little too similar to the killing of gangster Ben "Bugsy" Siegel, who is loosely considered the founder of modern Las Vegas. His best friend Meyer Lansky may or may not have been the one who ordered it.
  • Only Sane Man: The main representative of the Supreme Council faction that realizes how the war is escalating, how costly it has already become, and who are trying to moderate its foreseeable course.
  • Pro-Human Transhuman: Actually, he swore PLANT would fight the Naturals to the death after the Bloody Valentine. But a year on, he sees what escalating the war will cost the living Coordinators, and he's not interested in Patrick's Final Solution, looking to Take a Third Option and co-exist in peace. He is, after all, the one that Lacus got it from.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: He's the leader of the moderate faction for a reason.
  • The Scapegoat: Patrick blames Siegel for the theft of the Freedom. And has him shot without trial. Although Siegel fled with his daughter, we only see Lacus's part in the matter, and her resistance speeches which only fueled paranoid Patrick's hatred for his "traitorous" best friend more. Siegel's part in everything is quite murky, which makes him very much this trope and probably the Sacrificial Lion too.
  • Superior Species: Averted. He's not sure the Coordinators should even be there, and points out their falling birth rates to Patrick. Patrick isn't listening.
  • We Used to Be Friends: Siegel is both depressed and eventually angry about the steep decline of his relationship with Patrick, but he's not willing to go along with genocide and not afraid to stand up to Zala about it. It costs him his life.

    Ezalia Joule 

Voice Actors: Kotono Mitsuishi (Japanese), Alison Matthews (English original series), Cindy Robinson (English HD remaster)

Yzak's mother, the Martius City representative, and a member of Patrick Zala's faction on the Supreme Council, Ezalia is his second-in-command, and is even more ardent than Patrick in her belief that Coordinators are a new, superior species. Proud of her son's military service, Ezalia nevertheless worries about his safety, and can be quite controlling — if well-meaning — in her interactions with Yzak.

  • Demoted to Extra: In SEED, Ezalia serves as Patrick's Number Two on the Supreme Council. In SEED Destiny, she makes her only appearance in an audio drama as a comic relief character.
  • Dissonant Serenity: Patrick rants and raves about how the Naturals have to be exterminated. Ezalia takes it as a simple fact.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: It's her love for her son Yzak that humanises her and makes her less of a monster than her boss.
  • Evil Matriarch: Her status as Yzak's mom is her one redeeming quality. It doesn't make her beliefs or plans a jot less evil, though.
  • Fantastic Racism: At times she's scarier than Patrick.
  • Final Solution: She fully endorses Patrick's plans for a Natural genocide.
  • Icy Blue Eyes: Ezalia's eyes are as cold as her personality.
  • Knight Templar: Only a Natural genocide can save the Coordinators!
  • Master Race: Fully endorses Patrick's agenda believing the Coordinators are this.
  • My Beloved Smother: To Yzak. Which makes her a damn sight better than Patrick.
  • A Nazi by Any Other Name: Her politics are of the same radical bent as Patrick's and she supports his policies wholeheartedly.
  • Number Two: To Patrick Zala. From a political standpoint she's practically The Dragon.

    Andrew Waltfeld 

Main mecha: TMF/A-802BuCue, TMF/A-803 LaGOWE

Voice Actors: Ryotaro Okiayu (Japanese), Brian Drummond (English original series dub), Matt Giroveanu (English HD remaster dub)

"At what point do we put an end to [war]? When every single one of your enemies has been destroyed? Perhaps then."

Known as "the Desert Tiger", Waltfeld is a feared ZAFT commander operating in the Libyan desert. He serves as the first major opponent Kira faces other than Athrun and his team, and poses a serious threat to the Archangel and her crew, despite being a pretty decent guy. Meeting him forces Kira to further reevaluate his moral stance on the war.

  • Ace Pilot: His piloting skills make him a feared ZAFT commander.
  • Affably Evil: It helps that he's more affable than evil.
  • An Arm and a Leg: After his fight with Kira, he returns in the final arc of the series missing his right arm and left eye. He has a prosthetic arm attached later on in Destiny.
  • Animal Mecha: Only pilots the nonhumanoid BuCue and LaGOWE.
  • Animal Motifs: He takes his "tiger" nickname to heart, complete with orange and black striped pilot suit.
  • Anti-Villain: He treats all his enemies and opponents with tact and respect, has many interests outside of war, and is both genial and a fan of doing the right thing. He's just not on the protagonist's side...
  • Battle Couple: He and Aisha are this in the LaGOWE.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: He takes his food and especially his coffee very, very seriously. He is however, most effective.
  • The Captain: He runs Eternal for Lacus and serves as her executive officer after helping her steal it. She calls him "Captain Waltfeld", so it's a definite switch from his former Commander title.
  • Commanding Coolness: Another ZAFT Commander, like his model Ramba Ral, he has many deeply loyal subordinates, including his ADC Martin DaCosta, who is simultaneously baffled by and would do anything for him. Waltfeld's clever and easygoing manner ratchets him up to Very Cool.
  • Cool Old Guy: Despite not being that old, he's this when compared to others in the cast, who are mainly teenagers. He has experience, wisdom and steel nerves that they lack.
  • Expy: Of Ramba Ral, fulfilling a very similar role in terms of story and personality.
  • Eye Scream: His battle with Kira cost him an eye.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: After he turns up alive, he has a very visible scar where his left eye used to be.
  • Heel–Face Turn: He joins Lacus after his apparent death. It helps that he was shown to have a similar, or at least compatible, outlook on war to her own.
  • It Gets Easier: He discusses it with Kira and Cagalli. Unlike Mu, he considers it to be a negative thing.
  • Last-Name Basis: Only subverted by Aisha, who calls him Andy. No one else even calls him Andrew.
  • Must Have Caffeine: He is regularly seen drinking and/or brewing coffee. The only exception is inside his mobile suit.
  • Noble Demon: Burns down a town after letting the civillians evacuate, leaves the areas he's conquered in relative peace, lets Kira and Cagalli escape when he could have captured them... it's no wonder he couldn't stomach the Zala regime.
  • No One Could Survive That!: What Kira does to his mech kills Aisha but not him.
  • Pro-Human Transhuman: He's not very prejudiced, and ends up siding with the Three Ships' Alliance.
  • Red Baron: The Desert Tiger.
  • Shout-Out: To Erwin Rommel. Has a nickname similar to "The Desert Fox", not to mention being courteous and honorable to his enemies. Bonus points for the fact he even gives the civilians of a town time to evacuate before leveling it, which is something Rommel would have done.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": There were many variations such as "Bartfeld" before the official romanization was clear.
  • Trademark Favorite Drink: Coffee. Trying new brews is a running gag with him.
  • Turn the Other Cheek: When he meets with Kira again after their battle, he tells him he doesn't hold any ill will against him at all.
  • Villains Out Shopping: He's constantly experimenting with different coffee brews.


Main mecha: TMF/A-803 LaGOWE

Voice Actors: Vivian Hsu (Japanese series), Fumi Hirano (Japanese Compilation Movies), Saffron Henderson (English original series), Michelle Ruff (English HD remaster)

"You're taking this rather well. This is difficult for you, isn't it? I can tell you're really fond of him."

Girlfriend of Andrew Waltfeld, the Desert Tiger, and a capable gunner in her own right. Just as sympathetic a character as Andy, she's rather friendly toward Kira and Cagalli when they encounter each other.

  • Action Girlfriend: Waltfeld's gunner in their unique two-seater LaGOWE. Aisha isn't even in ZAFT, but she still wants to fight together with the man she loves. She explicitly says that she's okay with dying for it.
  • Battle Couple: With Andy, fighting with him in their own mobile suit.
  • Character Death: She died in the battle with Kira.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: She has orange streaks in her black hair because Waltfeld is the Desert Tiger.
  • Deadpan Snarker: When she's not being sweet and understanding, she's making full use of her snarking abilities. Her best moment is probably her response to Yzak's claim that he and Dearka have more experience against the Strike than she and Waltfeld do.
    Aisha: "Losing experience doesn't count."
  • Expy: She's the Crowley Hamon to Andy's Ramba Ral - though he ends up outliving her in a reversal from the original series.
  • Foreign Fanservice: Subverted. Aisha is played by a non-native Japanese speaker, and looks appropriately 'exotic' as a Coordinator from PLANT note , but the odds of Waltfeld finding a girlfriend who can pilot ZAFT mobile suits in the impoverished desert as opposed to bringing her from home are rather low.
  • Hime Cut: Long hair, sidetails and even bangs; yes she looks the trope and her sweet and understanding personality goes along with it.
  • Only One Name: If she has one other than "Aisha", we don't hear about it.
  • Satellite Character: Her presence in the show revolves entirely around the Tiger.
  • Sexy Backless Outfit: Aisha's regular outfit basically cuts out to the bottom of her spine, although no one says anything or even stares.
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: The one doing the cleaning; she personally picks out a nice dress and jewelry for Cagalli and re-styles her hair. Waltfeld comments how much the temporary makeover suits her.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: A "natural" Girly Girl, especially when compared to Cagalli, who isn't thrilled to be stuck masquerading as one, although Aisha is so skillful that Cagalli suits her changed look well.
    Martin Da Costa 

Voice Actors: Akira Sasanuma (Japanese), Brian Dobson (English), Robbie Friedman (English HD Remaster dub)

Waltfeld's ADC and second-in-command.

  • Big Damn Hero: He saves Athrun from being arrested after confronting his father and essentially initiates him into the Clyne Faction. Prior to that, he also shows up leading a counterstrike force when Athrun and the outlaw Lacus are under heavy fire from a plainclothes unit sent for her by Patrick.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Joins the Clyne Faction along with Waltfeld.
  • Number Two: To Andrew Waltfeld.
  • Undying Loyalty: Again, to the Desert Tiger. And also seemingly to Siegel and Lacus.


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