Mobile Suit Gundam Wing – Season 1, Episode 4 – “The Victoria Nightmare” – The Spark the Gundams Made

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    “The Victoria Nightmare” is a good episode for exploring Zechs’s character, how the UESA is making things worse, Wufei’s ideology and the connection between the other Gundam Pilots. This episode really gives us a glimpse of what is to come from the feel of it as well as giving us the chance to know two other fascinating characters.

    The episode was directed by Tetsuya Watanabe and Atsushi Shigeta and written by Katsuyuki Sumisawa.

    The premise picks up where we left off with Zechs going to Victoria base since he heard a Gundam was going to attack there and meeting his colleague, friend and possible love Noin who has been training the new recruits. Shenlong Gundam attacks and the story unfolds from there. Around the same time Duo and Heero are repairing their Gundams and the UESA is holding a meeting on what to do about the rebel colonies since they know that is where the Gundams came from.

Here is the assessment of the episode:

The Pros: Noin and Zechs – These two have a great relationship. They both went to the academy together and their approaches balance out one another. Noin is about saving soldiers while Zechs is about defeating the enemy no matter the cost since those who survive learn. You can tell why each of them are specials because of this. We also learn that Noin is better but took the mentor role for Zechs so that he would be seen as the best of the group. Sadly we don’t see why this is the case but we haven’t truly seen them in action yet in my opinion.

Tallgeese – Tallgeese is the Gundam that Zechs gets at the base as it is as large as the Gundams being fought and is their best bet at fighting it. We see ones later being based off it so that OZ and UESA have a chance to fight back against the Colonies’ Gundams.

Heero and Duo – I like how these two interact. Duo is nice and carefree, while Heero is morose and bitter and doesn’t care about anyone. We see this when he steals equipment from Deathscythe so he can fulfill his mission of destroying a Gundaniam shipment. Heero is about the mission where Duo is trying to make a life as well as do the mission.

Trowa and Quatre – Quatre is a musician and he and Trowa play together. The music in this scene is beautiful and it’s a nice contrast to the war going on, especially as Quatre is such a tender personality.

Vice Foreign Minister Dorian and the UESA – Dorian wants them to not up the war with the colonies as Operation Meteor came about because of the UESA oppression. No one listened to him though, except Treize who maybe killing him as for now the war is profiting OZ.

Treize – We really see how cold and calculating he is and that he has no room for people who don’t serve his purpose as he tells Lady Une to take care of Dorian after he hears about what was said during the meeting.

Wufei’s Assault on Victoria – Wufei does a lot of damage but is nearly injured by Noin before he destroys one of the ships and takes the lazer that the base was holding. I don’t like Wufei at this point as he sees “Bleeding hearts and women” as unworthy of death because they are so weak. I did like the battle though and Shenlong Gundam is a pretty amazing Gundam.

The Con: Wufei – Wufei is sexist and obsessed with being the best. Right now I have no reason to like the character as he is the definition of arrogance.

Relena – She still has a death wish as the one scene we see her in is her screaming for Heero to come and kill her. Why are we supposed to like this character again?

     This was a really good episode where we got the chance to know Dorian and Noin, both are fascinating characters. Also it’s great seeing that the UESA is slowly becoming a threat again…mostly due to Zechs and Treize but it’s a good direction that the show is heading. I’m looking forward to see how the war unfolds and more about where the Gundam Pilots came from.

Final Score: 9.2 / 10. Solidly great.

Mobile Suit Gundam Wing – Season 1, Episode 3 – “Five Gundams Confirmed” – The Pilots Make Contact

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“Five Gundams Confirmed” is the episode where the pilots outside of Duo and Heero begin meeting each other and we see what this means in relation to their relationships and the UESA and OZ react to these new threats. It’s a good character episode that does a great job showing rather than telling.

The episode was directed by Yumekichi Minatoya and Nobuyoshi Nishimura and written by Katsuyuki Sumisawa.

The episode picks up with the pilots continuing their missions and Heero in an Alliance hospital. Relena goes to try and help break him out, but Duo is already on it. From here the story unfolds as Trowa attacks the base with Heavyarms where Zechs discovers Tallgeese and Quatre makes contact with Trowa in Sandrock and his forces. From here the story unfolds.

Here is the assessment of the episode:

The Pros: Major Sally – Major Sally shows us that not all members of the Alliance are incompetent or manipulators as we see her resist using truth serum on Heero since he’s a kid. She’s ethical and driven to find the truth. I’m hoping she survives as she made a good first impression as a character.

The Specials – We learn in this episode the Specials are an elite military force that doesn’t need military oversight to act. Zechs is a member of the specials and Treize is their leader as he is nobility and is a the leader also of the mysterious Romafeller Foundation as well as the organization of OZ.

Zechs and Treize – Treize is good at using Zechs’s curiosity and passion to his advantage as they change tactics to see what the Gundams can do and to account for all of them. It’s a great scene and you can tell that Treize is almost like an older brother to Zechs in how he acts around him.

Zechs – Zechs is a special and always looking towards the future. This is what motivates the soldiers he talks to in their battle against Trowa and Heavyarms as they know that what is discovered during the battle will create better soldiers to defeat the Gundams later.

Heero and Duo – Duo is a cool guy who is really laid back compared to Heero’s seriousness. Duo also loves living and is having fun in the mission. He is undercover as a farmer too and clearly enjoys his undercover job. Heero is miserable and at one point almost kills himself and doesn’t pull his parachute. Whatever happened to him in the past mus have been pretty horrific.

Trowa and Quatre – Trowa is the overly serious guy who doesn’t want help, even though if Quatre hadn’t arrived with Sandrock he would have been killed by Alliance and OZ forces. He respects Quatre’s strength though and recognizes they are on the same side in the final scene between them.

Okay: Relena – Her dialogue is still stilted and it doesn’t feel like her character is fully formed. Her drive is entirely Heero at this point which is messed up given how he threatened and tried to kill her.

This is a great episode and shows that it really is the character dynamics that drive this show, since at this point there isn’t the political depth of “Mobile Suit Gundam,” that has yet to come. Still does a great job at letting us know all of the Pilots in different ways and seeing Zechs and Treize interact.

Final Score: 9 / 10. It was a solidly great episode.