Fri, 27 Aug 1999 13:19:15 -0700
Here at last:
Gundam Archive (1999.6.30, Mediaworks, ISBN4-8402-1211-2) 392 pages (36
color) for ¥10,000 -- numbered (mine's 04126) hardcover in slipcover.
I was not prepared for the sheer size of this book: 380mm (15") by 265mm
(10½") by 50mm (2"). It weighs in at around 3 kilos (6.6 pounds)!
I was a bit disappointed that the slipcover is cardboard, not a hard
plastic shell like the one on Gundam Fix. It's also bright yellow, in
sharp contrast to the book's hard covers, which are bright sky blue. The
title and a Gundam face logo are emblazoned on the slipcover in raised
vermilion, with the book itself is titled much more modestly, without the
logo, in white.
It's almost entirely B&W line art, with 36 pages on which the line art has
been hand painted with watercolors. Flipping through the pages, you can
watch the evolution of Gundam from the first sketches to the final
animation style sheets. Some of these have been published elsewhere, most
notably in Gundam Age, but the vast majority are unique to this book and
the ones that appear elsewhere are not so expansively done.
Gihren Zabi was originally going to be bald and, along with the other Zeon
aristocrats, wear a Zeon mark on his forehead. The Core Fighter was
originally called the Freedom Wing and, at one point, sported an X-wing
and, at another, a Hot Wheels style flame decal. The Gunperry was
originally called the Freedom Cruiser. The Gouf originally carried what is
now called the Gelgoog shield and had knee guard reminiscent of ancient
knight armor. The earliest form of the Gundam as we know it, still called
Gunboy, had a human face reminiscent of Giant Robo, which was covered by
the familiar grilled mask later that same month (October 1978).
I was also surprised by the large number of Romanizations at the tops of
the pages in the middle section (pages 106 to 201):
Katz - Letz - Kicka
White Base Crew
Degwin Sodo Zabi
Like 'em or not, I don't think it gets any more official than this, folks!
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