Burke Rukes (god_of_gundams@hotmail.com)
Sat, 08 Jul 2000 17:02:24 CDT


Just finished watching the first 15 episodes (preceeded by a preview/history
of Gundam special) of Turn A Gundam a couple of days ago, and I thought I'd
give my impressions. Don't worry, I won't write anything that'll give away
the plot, for those of you anxious to see it (probably not to many of you
^_^).

If I have one word which can describe my reaction after seeing it, it would
probably be "refreshing." It's good to see a Gundam sequel which, in very
subtle ways, sort of pays a salute to all the previous Gundam series', but
can truly stand on its own. And for those of you who've been pulling your
hair out trying to figure out how all the other Gundam timelines tie
together and lead into the Turn A timeline, I can only say this: it's not
that necessary. Considering Tomino's comment that the appearances of
various UC-timeline MS like the Zakus and Kapools and such are merely "sight
gags" or "jokes," you could watch Turn A with the assumption that the mobile
suits they dig up are nothing more than "relics from some ancient time," in
addition to being a tongue-in-cheek salute to Gundam series' past. The
basic plot is also so different from anything they've done in the past
(except for mabye G Gundam, but I consider that more of a parody/spoof
myself), you can watch it and appreciate it without having ever seen ANY
previous Gundam animation.

Yet it does indeed have that "Tomino touch," as he definitely seems to focus
even more on the characters in this series. That's one thing I love about
Turn A so far... the mobile suits aren't really "played up" at all... Tomino
seems to handle them as purely bloodless machines, without all the "heroics"
we've gotten used to in previous Gundam shows.

Another touch I immediately fell in love with is the library of all-new
sound effects! Personally, I've gotten kind of sick and tired of hearing
the SAME DAMN SOUND EFFECT used for the last 20 years. The new mecha sound
effects used in Turn A seem more high-tech... the walking and limb-movement
sounds sound more like actual motors turning and working... the energy
weapons sound like they're trying to break the sound barrier... lots of neat
little cool sounds like that.

As for the animation itself, I'd rank the quality as "fair to good",
although probably not as good as Gundam Wing's or even Gundam X's. I
noticed that the animators seem to have done a good job putting in every
last panel line from Syd Mead's Gundam and Sumo design in just about every
frame of animation. Something else about the animation that kinda bugged me
at first - but then made some sense after a little bit - is that in many
scenes where we see mobile suits walking or running along, the only parts
that are usually moving are just the legs... the torsos and arms stay pretty
much level and still. At first, I thought this was just laziness on the
parts of the animators, but after I got to thinking about it, I figured I'd
rather ride in the "smooth-ride" Turn A's cockpit rather than an "old-style"
Gundam cockpit that bounces up and down with every step and makes me want to
lose my lunch. :-)

I will also proudly admit that I'm in the minority that's fallen in love
with Syd Mead's Gundam design, as well as the other designs he's done for
this series. Akira Yasuda's character designs took a little getting used to
(I've never been a big Capcom character design fan), but they're a little
less hard on my eyes now. Although I'm still having trouble picturing an
albino boy for a Gundam pilot... ^_^

That's about it. I think I'll be getting more episodes soon, and I can't
wait!

-Burke "Burkenator" Rukes
god_of_gundams@hotmail.com

The Mecha Domain Mark-II - http://mechadomain.gundam.com

"You can't fight City Hall, but you can goddamn sure blow it up!" - George
Carlin

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