Re: [gundam] More Turn-A Info in May Newtype

Prabal Nandy (nandy@U.Arizona.EDU)
Wed, 14 Apr 1999 20:33:03 -0700 (MST)

> Very false! History so far shows that the more automation you add into
> the manufactory, the more concentrated power becomes. Whether you look
> into good old fascism or bad new communism, there's an uncanny
> co-incidence between concentrated power and concentrated industry.
> Democractization of technology, if possible, will have to be a result of
> political decision, not a product of technology itself.

  Well, I think this is very true!
  But what if Automated technology productions exist-- nah, forget that.
What if some movement, perhaps after all the big "Eve Wars" of GW and
"Space Wars" of XG and "Gundam Fights" of GG, etc are over, there was a
titanic popular grass-roots movement to eliminate the military-industrial
complex after a complete overhaul (revolution) against the Federal
Government? What if the people got so sick and tired of the environmental
travesety of the Gundam Fights/Wars that they took matters into their own
hands and said "No more!"
  Then wouldn't it be possible that the only factories still in use would
be factories producing technologies that people were willing to "support",
i.e., a 'cooperative factory' where people worked and sold existing
technologies as needed for supplimentary income, and perhaps raised their
own smaller farms as their 'main job'? Hence, tech probably wouldn't
improve much, but certain very-important techs might persist simply
because people are willing to pay for them. Weapons techs would probably
slowly wear out, simply because of the complexity of gundam-era weapons
and the fact that this new depopulated Earth is sociopolitically in a sort
of 17th century phase...

> > high-technology level of development, with fancy TVs, butt-massaging
> > Lazyboy chairs, heated toilet seats and potato-chip IVs.
> that's why Tomino said [some] technology kills the human spirit (from an

  What? Butt-massaging leather chairs kill the human spirit? (Laughs)
Sorry, just kidding there.

> old interview). I guess Turn-A's ambition is to somehow reconcile
> technology with the human spirit. > > >

  I really wonder how he's gonna do this... HAS ANYONE SEEN BRAINPOWERD's

terms with it as time has gone on. Hence Turn-A. >
> But do you agree that Tomino saw some kind of conflicts between mechas
and > the human spirit even back in OYW? If nothing else, all the
important > human characters Amuro, Char, Bright, Sarah survive, but all
the > mechanical 'characters' Gundam, Guncannons, Jiong, White Base were >
sacrificed without even a drop of tear. It's a stretch, but a kind of >
concluding statment could be: people are important, technology is not. >

  Well, I agree and disagree here:
  I think, with MSG, Tomino was trying to bring people away from the "God
Robot" technophilicism of the old Giant Robot Genre and show them a new
universe of storytelling that was more human-centered, more viscerally
satisfying and closer to the heart than the old monster-of-the-week shows.
  In this show, Technology was a Tool, as you've said. It's expendable,
it's replaceable, it's not the star of the show. In a certain way it's not
important... but in another way it's VERY important. Gundam, like it or
not, was a hardware show, and it was the Gundam mechanisms that gave it
such mass-appeal. However, I think it is very significant to gundam that
at the end of MSG, it was the robot present from episode #1 (The Gundam)
that's beaten every single advanced-high-tek-prototype all the way to the
final episode (Ziong). I.e., the hero doesn't need a new upgraded toy
every week to sell toys and prove how macho-cool he is (And Amuro
definately wasn't). So you see, the Technology, while not the focus, was
definately a tool for the _story_ as well. There is definately a thread
running through all the Gundam series about the power of technology, and I
think nothing fits this idea better than the concept of "Newtypes", i.e.,
people who's natural brainwaves can be used to merge their minds with
advanced technology to create unimaginable power, and become living
weapons! It's clear through the later Gundam series that Tomino thinks
this is cool cool cool stuff.
  I think he's begun to _regret_ that! I think he's realized that he's
influenced a generation of Japanese kids to become obsessed with
technology as a sort of materialistic crutch for a deep-seated spirtual

> Perhpas he's developed an answer over the two decade and so now canclaim
> to bring a satisfying conclusion to the whole Gundam saga.

  If this is the case... I will be _VERY_ pleased and surprised! I will
even forgive the butt-ugly Turn-A, because I will believe that Tomino made
it look stupid on purpose, as if to tell us "Tek is not the answer! Look
at me and weep! The Plastic Warrior cannot save you!"

> are gradually re-learning them. >
> Ah, but you (very legitimately) are the one who doubted the possibilty
of > a pastoral utopia. Obviously, any race or nation that suppress
military > tech in the presence of violent conflicts must be short-lived.
So the > backwardness of their military arts CANNOT be a result of any
suppression, > but must be a result of a prolonged lack of threats. > >
Any piece of technology (pyramid-building, moon-landing, typewriter- >
making) no matter how important and glorious at the time, will be >
forgotten if it's not needed for a period of time. If the Earthlins get >
rid of violent conflicts then it won't make much sense to build mass >
killing machines right? > > The fun (and the anime)

  Well, I think you're very correct here, and right.
  Human nature can't change even after 2000 years... there simply aren't
big long-range threats anymore, and I think this is simply because the
Earth has been devastated... there are too FEW people rather than too many
people, and these people are so geographically separated that it is rather
pointless for them to go to war. And perhaps the climate has changed so
much it takes all their time just to make enough food to feed themselves,
they can't quite bear the expense of total war.

can hardly build a flyable aircraft can support and maintain a Mobile Suit
> > but well.... > > yeah. that does defy logic. But then, if Turn-A
shows some good eye-candy > like Laputa, I will eat it up too. > > > Hey,

  Hey, works for me!

I believe that technology will in a few more decades, solve every > >
problem that has ever plagued mankind and create a future world of > >
ildyllic peace and prosperity... the Golden Age of Robotics! > >
HALLELUJAH! > > CHIN, Chien Ting > Dept of Medical Biophysics, Sunnybrook

  REJOICE brother! Raise your hand and bow your head to the Plastic
Warrior! Stand up to the Victory!


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