Mark Simmons (scorpio@best.com)
Tue, 28 Dec 1999 17:29:10 -0800


Hey folks,

  Since I've recently been contemplating events related to Gundam 0080,
here's a digression as to possible dates for the start of the Universal
Century calendar...

* First, we have the date on the newspaper seen in the last episode of
Gundam 0080: Monday, January 14, UC 0080. If we posit that anything seen
on-screen is canonical, then we know for certain which dates in Gundam
history correspond to which days of the week.

* The Gundam 0080 timeline seems to be internally consistent in this
respect. The timeline in B-CLUB's Gundam 0080 Visual Comic Volume 2
(which seems to have been used as a source for the timeline in Sunrise's
Gundam 2000 calendar) says that Al's joining the Cyclops team and his
infiltration of the secret Federation base took place on December 15 and
16, respectively. If January 14 is a Monday, these days would be Saturday
and Sunday. December 14, when Operation Rubicon begins, is a Friday -
hence, as shown, a school day. December 17, the date shown on a parking
meter the day after Al sneaks into the secret base, would be a Monday -
lo and behold, Al's back in school again.

* Meanwhile, Shindosha's venerable timeline indicates that UC years that
are multiples of 4 are leap years (witness the date of February 29, UC
0088, listed for an event in ZZ). Assuming this is true, UC 0080 must
also be a leap year.

Thus, UC 0080 is both a leap year _and_ a year in which January 14 falls
on a Monday. That narrows it down to a pretty small range of candidates.
Here's two centuries' worth:

  UC 0080 = UC 0001 =

  AD 2036 AD 1957
  AD 2064 AD 1985
  AD 2104 AD 2025
  AD 2132 AD 2053
  AD 2160 AD 2081
  AD 2188 AD 2109
  AD 2228 AD 2149
    ... ...

Of these, AD 1957 is a cute option - the year Sputnik launched! - but if
we've moved half the human race into space already, I haven't noticed. AD
1985 isn't really pegged to any historical event, but it still gives us
12 years to found Von Braun City, and it puts UC 0079 just about the date
Tomino gave in his original series proposal. AD 2053 is probably going to
be Dafydd's pick, since it's closest to the 2045 date from the older
timelines.

  Not compatible with the above two conditions: AD 1969, when man first
set foot on the moon, and longtime fan fave AD 2001. Neither is
compatible with January 14, UC 0080, being a Monday. And, although AD
2013 meets both conditions, it would make UC 0088 equal to AD 2100 - not
a leap year - and thus breaks the Shindosha timeline.

-- Mark

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Mark Simmons / scorpio@best.com / http://gundam.anime.net
"He's a god - it'll take more than one shot."

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