Hey guys, Kaushik here for this week’s Mecha Monday. As some of you may know, there’s a new Gundam series out this fall anime season. It’s been getting a lot of buzz prior to its release, because the man behind Gundam, one Yoshiyuki Tomino is behind this series. Reconguista in G has been created to honor Gundam’s 35th anniversary, and I could think of no better way to handle that than to bring Tomino back to the series. Since he hasn’t done a Gundam television series since Turn A Gundam way back in 1999, there are a lot of eyes watching this, and a lot of excitement to see the finished product. Well, last week the first 2 episodes aired and I’ve already got some great vibes from the show. So let’s get to it~
So of course this Gundam series takes place along with Tomino’s other works, in the UC universe. For those that might not be familiar with the Gundam series, this means it takes place in the same universe as the early Gundam series, which took place in the Universal Century timeline. Specifically it takes place in 1014 of the Regild Century, which occurrs directly after the Universal Century. This places it after most of the late-series works in the UC universe, such as Char’s Counterattack and the recently ended OVA series Gundam Unicorn. It’s difficult to say where this takes place compared to some of the other later works in the Universal Century, particularly Victory Gundam and Turn A Gundam. If I had to guess, I’d say it took place after Victory and before Turn A, but that’s mostly baseless.
The premise for Reconguista in G (generally shortened to G-Reco) is based upon the concept of space elevator. That is a man-made structure built on earth, extending past the atmosphere to bring people to space. It’s an interesting concept and I’m sure as the series goes on more and more emphasis will be put on their importance. As of the first 2 episodes, there are already a few factions in play and possibly in conflict. However, the state of affairs within the show seems to be somewhat confusing in terms of clear battle lines, so after 2 episodes it’s hard to say what faction is worth supporting besides just the main characters themselves.
If there’s one thing that hasn’t completely sold me on this series, I think it’s the characters and how they interact. So far a lot of it has been rushed and sudden, and I haven’t, as a viewer, really gotten to know the characters. A lot of the interactions between characters has been somewhat terse with clear beginning and ending points rather than naturally flowing conversations, and as a result it’s given me a kind of clipped view of them. That being said, there’s been a lot of exposition going on for the first two episodes, so I will forgive the series… For now. It’s been difficult to put together the motivations behind the main character, Bellri Zenam, but I imagine those will become clear as the series goes on.
If there’s one way I could describe this series, it’s “deliciously 80s.” It may not mean much unless you’ve watched some 80s anime, but the vibe I’m getting from G-Reco is fitting these shows very well. Some examples of this style are going to be things like the long and drawn out cut-ins of characters, the incredibly corny lines (okay, all anime has this, but 80s lines are something else let me tell you), and a kind of goofy humor style that relies a lot on slapstick. In addition, the character designer, Kenichi Yoshida, has done a good job of bringing some of that 80s style to the modern era while still keeping it in his own personal style.
It’s got all the nostalgic vibes I’d love to get from an 80s anime, of course. But it’s also got all the perks of being from the modern era. The backgrounds are gorgeous in the show, and the animation quality is looking good so far. I’m really liking the mecha design so far. The space pirate mecha design reminds me a little bit of the Gelgoogs, but they come in on these flying speeders so it’s interesting to see. I love the G-Self, the Gundam of the series. It’s got all of the classic look of course, but the little horns on its heads offer great personal charm and I think lends a sort of childish quality to the machine. This is the same kind of childish quality I’m getting from the show. I don’t mean that in a bad way of course; instead G-Reco strikes me as an incredibly fun show. I imagine it might be similar to Tomino’s earlier work, Overman King Gainer. In the way Unicorn revived Gundam’s serious aspects while still keeping some of that old style and being gorgeous, I think G-Reco will do the same but for the more fun aspects of the series, and I’m looking forward to that.
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