Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin Episode #01

Ladies and gentlemen, I bring you back to a conflict that’s so intriguing and made legendary over a span of one-year. I’m talking about the One-Year War between the Earth Federation and the Principality of Zeon.

And so, I present you Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin. It’s a four-part series where it expands the TV series by showing stories before and during the war. The first episode revolves around Casval Rem Deikun, also known as Char Aznable.

So let’s begin with Zeon Zum Deikun’s death as he’s about to declare independence from the Earth Federation. Some say that he was assassinated by Federation agents, but Jimba Ral pointed out that the Zabi family are the one who carried out the assassination.

Speaking of the Zabi family, they’ll eventually take power from Zeon Zum Deikun and turn the peaceful republic of Zeon into a tyrannical principality.

While Gihren and Dozle will have their role on the upcoming One-Year War, the biggest surprise coming from the Zabi family is none other than Kycilla Zabi as she’s far ruthless than the original TV version, which involves killing her brother Sasro by blowing up his convoy in which the rest of the Zabi family took advantage of it.

Don’t let her looks fool you, Kycilla is one manipulative bitch who can’t be messed with. With the Zabi family taking control of Side 3, who would oppose them?

Enter Zeon Zum Deikun’s two children: Casval and Artesia. While young Artesia is innocent and she wants to be with her mother Astraia, Casval wants nothing more than avenging his father’s death by bringing down the Zabi family with his hands.

Heck, he doesn’t get scared when being molested by Kycilla of all people. I guess the reason why Casval is interested in little girls because of that incident.

Of course, in order to carry out his revenge against the Zabi family, Casval will have to escape Side 3 together with Artesia and Jimba Ral. By the way, this is the most tear-jerking event on this first episode as Casval and Artesia will have to bid farewell to their mother Astraia, as she was put into solitude by Zeon Zum Deikun’s mother, Lady Roselucia.

While Casval doesn’t show his emotions, Artesia does as she wants to be with her mother. Too bad that Artesia would realize that Astraia will never come back as she and Casval part ways to their homeland. Oh, and their escape towards Earth wouldn’t be successful without Jimba’s son Ramba and Crowley Hamon. so kudos to both of them!

Anyways, now for the presentation. Gundam: The Origin sure captured the spirit of the original 1979 TV series, ranging from the music up to the 2D animation. Of course, traditional animation is applied for character interactions. For the cast, I’m okay with having Minami Tanaka voicing young Casval aside from Shuuichi Ikeda. Apart from that, I’m surprised that Miyuki Sawashiro handled Crowley Hamon very well.

For mobile suit battles (which only has two scenes), it uses CGI animation where the action is fluid and it shows intensity, especially the first scene where the Red Comet showed his stuff during the Battle of Loum. Did I mention that Casval first piloted an early version of the Guntank become joining the Zeon Army later in his life?

While using CGI is great, it doesn’t fit with the aesthetics of this four-part series. It would be better if the mobile suits are animated using 2D animation, but I feel that it’ll take more time to finish the series. However, the good thing about Gundam: The Origin is the mobile suit designs. While some suits resembled their original design, it has minor changes to look more heavily-armed like the Zaku, which now has chest vulcans aside from having the usual armament of machine guns and bazookas.

With that said, that’ll be it for the first episode of Gundam: The Origin. While the next episode will premiere in Fall 2015, I’m hoping that the last two episode would feature the Federation side since Episode 2 will focus on Artesia Som Deikun.

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