Djallel Zouita (scirocco@gundam.com)
Sat, 15 May 1999 15:49:40 +0200


Kota Fujimura wrote :
 
> > Another point that I typically get uncomfy with is the issue of murder with
> > Gundam pilots. Doesn't anyone get the jitters when you realize it's a *15
> > year-old boy* wiping out dozens of men & mecha every episode? And *enjoying*
> > it? And that's only in Gundam Wing.
>
> Well, you could never tell in the animation, but all the OZ MS are
> equipped with very good ejection system, so the survival rate of the pilot
> is actually in 80% range, I believe.

Yeah, but we don't see any ejection pods or whatever that much in the
series (I've only seen up to 20, 26-30 and Endless Waltz). And I can't
figure how victims of Wufei's bombing for example could survive. In
Gundam Wing's case I think it's hardly defendable, IMO it's just an
attitude given to the show to make it look radical (and make Relena look
"cool"?). That's why I feel *deeply* concerned when I see the first
Gundam show to hit our shores will very likely be Gundam Wing. I mean
this show has inner qualities but to me, it's unhealthy, as Mark noted
further. And I don't want Gundam to have that remorseless killer image.
OTOH, most of UC is different...
 
> > In Victory, Usso is what, *13*?! And a
> > killer? Hmph.
>
> ....And he spend about 1/4 of the series trying to cope with it.

Yeah, I'm sorry for the analogy but Usso remembered me more or less of
Ender Wiggin (that's the closest one I could think of). And I think
that's what putting children in such situations should be about, not
making them cold killing machines but rather see how they try to cope
with it, how they're affected (I know you hate him, but Al is in a way
the most striking example).
 
> But one of the things people are overlooking is the war is subtraction.
> If you don't kill your enemy, he/she will kill you, or someone who's close
> to you gets hurt/killed. I believe this is how many of the teen pilots in
> UC got over the fact that they are mass murderers. If you are still not
> convinced, well, what can I say?

Mmm, basically that's what of most UC stuff boils down to: the cheapness
of human life, particularly when children are concerned, just take Katsu
for instance: no matter how you hate him, he's just a child when he gets
killed in Grips conflict and that seems almost normal, actually, this is
a poor example since everyone was almost relieved when he died. :-)
But maybe it's not the characters who should be shocked by that
behavior, but just us, the audience and that would be an argument in
favor of Gundam Wing, although I can't endorse it.
 
> If you think the story about someone who was forced to be mass murderer at
> the age of 13, and think it's ridiculous than it's sad, there's not much I
> can do about it.

That's actually very sad but that's another part of what makes most UC
Gundam so great (and dramatic): putting people in situation they should
have never faced, making them take desperate decisions they should never
have taken hadn't a war erupted and ultimately, making the audience
understand you aren't that free to choose at such times.
I guess children were employed in that purpose and also because they
could provide plot twists adults couldn't.
 
> (unless, it was portrayed in extremely corny way, which Episode Zero is
> somewhat guilty of)
 
Are you speaking of V Gundam's Episode Zero? How did it depict the show?
Is it available on any volume of the videos?
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