-Z- (Z@Gundam.Com)
Wed, 14 Jul 1999 19:18:32 -0700

At 20:22 7/14/1999 +0000, you wrote:
>3) how does zechs (and for that matter, char) get away with wearing a mask?
>(not to mention the long locks of hair :P) i mean, it's a military
>organization! the long hair, i can ignore, but not the mask.
>and, presumably, the false records and histories behind their assumed
>identities? how do they hide those? (is it just to fill the angst and
>dark-past content requirement?)

You only need a single false entry in your military records to justify a
mask: a medical record citing a disfiguring injury that cannot be corrected
by cosmetic surgery. See also eye patches and gloves (although the loss of
an eye or fingers would disqualify one from direct combat-related duty) and
nosepieces. Facial burn scars are the most common rationales for masks and
half-masks, but I've also seen them allowed for extensive birthmarks. It's
not common, but it's not a problem, either.

Wearing a mask as an affectation, well, when the military officers are also
aristocrats, anything is possible. "Iron Mask" wore his eponymous iron
mask as a badge of shame, not really all that different from Vera Ronah
cutting her hair or someone wearing a black armband while in mourning.
Different cultures have different rules about what's allowable and what's
not and the rules by which the Gundam military operates are not those of
the American military.

By the way, short hair for military members is a recent phenomenon,
originally necessitated by the vagaries of trench warfare in World War I.
Just look at General George Armstrong Custer or his compatriot General
Ambrose Everett Burnside (from whom we get "sideburns") to see the lengths
to which they went prior to that.

>4) are there no ejection seats in gundams? (is it the same for other gundam
>series?) i read in some fan website that it's because the gundam pilots are
>chosen for extreme courage (one might say lunacy...) that ejection seats are
>not necessary. and thus, the option of ejecting might weaken the pilot's
>resolve to win in battle. uhm...i don't yet know what to think of that,
>but it's kinda hard to take. a bit on the illogical side. (no to
>ejections, yes to self-destruct?)

You can't judge the Gundam by what you see in Gundam Wing. Most MS eject
the entire cockpit as a spherical space pod -- that's how Yazan Goebbels
gets to Shangri-La in Gundam ZZ -- and the original Gundam uses the Core
Fighter as an escape vehicle.


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