Mobile Suit Gundam Wing – Season 1, Episode 37 – “Zero vs. Epyon” – Endless War

Gw-ep37-zero-vs-epyon

Just when it looks like the Romafellers are going to be victorious the theme of “Gundam Wing” comes in to shake that up. The theme I’m talking about is oppression breeds more oppression and war breeds more war. In this instance it’s under the banner of the Artemis Revolution who kidnap Tsuberov and plan to use the Carrier to bring about their end goals of free colonies again. This is of course happening while our characters are facing their own dilemmas too.

“Epyon vs. Zero,” was directed by Shinichi Sakuma, Hitoshi Waraya and Tetsuya Watanabe and written by Katsuhiko Chiba.

The story involves the Artemis Revolution of the Colonies fighting again to be free. They kidnap Tsuberov who escapes and sets the Mobile Dolls on them before Wufei arrives to destroy them all. On Earth Epyon an Zero fight to the death and Dermail presents Relena with an offer to be the primary representative of the Romafeller Foundation to bring about peace.

The Pros: Romafeller and Dermail – Dermail is a smart guy. He knows that making Relena the face of Romafeller will make them untouchable and unite the people enough to bring about the World Government and order, which is apparently the aim of the Romafeller Foundation. It’s nice that it’s agenda is finally getting explored. Their goal is peace through domination.

The Artemis Revolution – They are also called the White Fangs and in many cases are ex-Treize faction people fighting for a free Colony that has control over their own destiny. Their approach though is domination as they planned to use Tsuberov’s surrender to dominate the Romafeller Foundation and now plan to use the Cruiser to do the same.

Wufei – Is fighting to stop violence and those who want to fight. It’s his integrity now, which is a bit confusing, but explains why everyone is his enemy. He has no way of knowing if there is violence in anyone’s heart. At this point he is just like Quatre when Quatre destroyed one of the colonies.

Epyon vs. Zero / Zechs vs. Heero – Zechs and Heero are similar but Heero is still purposeless wth Zechs losing his purpose because of Relena’s surrender and him being too late to defend her. Now all he and Heero have is revenge against Romafeller, which they realize after fighting though Heero still sees Zechs as his enemy. In the end they switch Gundams though with Zechs now in Epyon and Heero now in Zero.

Relena – Relena is faced with a hard choice and only makes it when she thinks there is no other way. She sees how people keep fighting and realizes that if she is the face of the enemy and can change them from within than there will finally be peace. She doesn’t trust the Romafeller Foundation obviously though.

The cons: Tsuberov – Nothing interesting or compelling about this character. He was just a man mad with power. His death meant nothing.

This was another great episode and the theme of war breeding more war is done really well. Of course the Artemis Revolution would come around, the Romafeller Foundation was sucking away the resources of the Colonies just to dominate them repeating what they’d already gone through with the Alliance. How this is all going to end remains to be seen though but the Sanc Kingdom’s destruction pretty much shows the death of peace.

Final Score: 9.7 / 10.

Mobile Suit Gundam Wing – Season 1, Episode 26 – “The Eternal Flame of the Shooting Stars” – Romafeller’s Revealed

Ep26-eternal-flame-of-the-shooting-stars

 

This is the episode that shows that OZ is truly one of the better factions and that the true villains are the Romafeller Foundation and their plan for domination of the Colonies and Earth via the Mobile Dolls. We also see how broken the pilots are and are given questions in regards to the deaths of some characters (Trowa and Une maybe alive?) We shall see though as we finish up the last half of the series.

The episode was directed by Yasunao Aoki and Nobuyoshi Nishimura and written by Katsuyuki Sumisawa.

The episode begins with Heero and Quatre ordered to be killed by Tsuberov. The troops disagree and we are introduced to the Treize faction who are also fighting the Romafeller Foundation and their invasion of Earth, though the Romafeller Foundation is winning the war by sheer numbers. From here the episode unfolds with Quatre and Heero in roles traded as Heero becomes the new insane soldier.

The Pros: The Treize Faction – The Treize faction is fantastic and the only ones fighting the Romafeller Foundation besides the Gundam Pilots. These guys are great and their gundams have shields too. They also rescue Quatre and Heero for the Colony Scientists who are working with them against the Romafeller Foundation.

Heero – Heero loses it this episode when he is hooked up to Gundam Wing and targets those who he sees as his enemies (mirroring what happened to Quatre when he was in Wing). From here it unfolds with him planning to kill the scientists until he has a vision of Quatre and one of Relena before he leaves the Gundams behind and escapes with Quatre to get to Earth.

Quatre – Heero brought Quatre back and this episode Quatre brings Heero back. He has finally learned from his father and found himself again. He only fights to defend and realizes the Gundams are a major problem as they are the greatest weapon of war and keep the cycle of violence going. He is a wise character in this episode and feels what he did to the Colony he destroyed.

The Message – The Message is that the cycle of war will always continue as long people build weapons and become weapons. It’s a great message and it shows how the use of weapons and war can break people as it broke the Gundam Pilots.

Okay: The Scientists – These guys are neutral again. They discover that the Pilots are faster than the Mobile Dolls and the computer system in the Gundams. They are special and that when the system makes their abilities sharpened. They make a great comment too on how they will not let Gundam Wing defeat them…as it survived the explosion and may serve a purpose later.

This was a great episode and a must see! We get to see Heero and Quatre grow as characters, see how Gundam Wing is out of everyone’s control…and the Romafeller Foundation’s conquest. This is the episode that establishes the factions for later and shows that some of our heroes may still be alive. It is a lot of fun and full of shades of grey.

Final Score: 9.6 / 10.

Mobile Suit Gundam Wing – Season 1, Episode 25 – “Quatre VS. Heero” – Sacrifice and the Automation of War

msgw25

Where the last episode felt unfinished, this one feels complete and is actually a great place for a mid-season finale. This episode reveals the Romafeller Foundation’s plot, shows the character of Treize and Une and shows how our pilots have changed and their lack of place in this new world. It is definitely a favorite, and has some pretty amazing fights too.

“Quatre VS. Heero” was directed  by Tetsuya Watanabe, Shinichi Sakuma and Hitoshi Waraya and written by Masashi Ikeda.

The episode picks up where we left off with Trowa incapacitated while Heero and Quatre fight while Wufei, Duo and the scientists are losing air. What also happens, besides the fight continuing is Treize resigning from control of OZ and Lady Une mounting a rescue attempt to save the Pilots. Around this time is when Quatre realizes Trowa is in danger and stops fighting.

The Pros: The Battles – There are a lot of great battles in the episode. From the reveal of the new Mobile Dolls called Virgos and them fighting Une and her troops, to Heero and Quatre’s battle to Duo and Wufei’s escape in their upgraded Gundams. There is some pretty amazing action this episode.

Treize – Treize resigns as he against the use of soulless weapons that do not value human life. This puts him at odds with the Romafeller Foundation who arrest him as he realizes the value of the zen state and how powerful the Pilots are and that they are the examples in their perfect feeling of their feelings. Great seeing Treize make a stand and to be shown as noble.

Tsuberov – This guy is a boss for sure. He shoots (and most likely kills) Lady Une! He is willing to die and kill for his ideas of power and control. The guy is like a minor Sith Lord as he is the face of the Romafeller’s in space.

Trowa – Trowa convinces Quatre to stop fighting and let go of his hate and in the process dies? He loses his Gundam but his body is still around. I’m hoping him or Lady Une die though as it shows actual cost this episode beyond nameless troops.

Quatre – Quatre finally stops fighting and defeats Heero (which is suprising, given Heero is supposed to be the best of the pilots) and he has finally began to heal as we see him caring for an injured Heero and realizing that his actions and hate led to the loss of his friend Trowa.

Duo and Wufei – They have their upgraded Gundams! Deathsyche Hell and Altron and they rock! The Gundams aren’t fully upgraded but they are more than a match for the automated Virgos. Can’t wait to see Duo and Wufei in action again, especially since they have grown so much.

The Message – The use of robotic and automated soldiers is bad as machines do not value human life and there should be the human idea of fighting for justice and freedom that is lost when there are only tools on the battlefield and not soldiers aware of things changing or making things change by their choices. It’s a powerful message and a good one too.

This is another one of those perfect “Mobile Suit Gundam Wing” episodes and one I highly recommend. It doesn’t even need the setup as  you see it in the lead up to the episode by the narrator. Great character growth and loss if Lady Une is actually dead (which given she was shot and this is a Gundam series, is probably the case). RIP Lady Une, you had a great character arc and were an awesome character!

Final Score: 10 / 10.