“The sequel to Gundam” that suddenly appeared
Today, 37 years ago, March 2, 1985, is when “Mobile Suit Z Gundam” started broadcasting.
I think it was a friend who saw Bansen after the previous show “Heavy Metal L-Gaim” that told me that “Gundam’s sequel” would start. It was 37 years ago, but when I first heard about it, I remember feeling a mixture of surprise and confusion. For the author, Gundam was a “final” work.
Nowadays, robot animation has a sequel, but there is no example of a new series of robot animation being made several years after the end of broadcasting. If it continues, it will shift from “Getter Robo” to “Getter Robo G”. As I did, there was only a pattern where the next series started as soon as the first series was over.
The author was learning on Saturday evening, and unfortunately, I could not see the new Gundam. As of 1985, home VCRs were starting to take off, but I couldn’t even record them because I wasn’t at my home yet, and I couldn’t help but listen to my friends.
And on the Monday following the week when the new Gundam, that is, “Mobile Suit Z Gundam”, started broadcasting, I immediately asked my friends what they thought, but the reaction was not good.
“Gundam was there.”
“There was no Amuro.”
“I didn’t understand something.”
Gundam was “Amuro’s ride” for the children at that time. The appearance of Gundam without Amuro is only a funny story now, but it seemed to be the height of contradiction.
Moreover, in the 1985 era, there was a headwind for “Gundam”. Children were crazy about the “Family Computer” released in 1983, and the pocket money that had disappeared from the plastic model was used to save and buy new cassettes.
Furthermore, it was also when Beat Takeshi’s “We Hyokin tribe” was booming on TV, and all the children were imitating. Under such circumstances, “Z Gundam” got a thorough evaluation, but it ended without becoming an explosive boom, and the broadcast frame moved to the subsequent work “Mobile Suit Gundam ZZ”.
The author learned the actual value of “Z Gundam” about three years later when it was rebroadcast in the early morning frame of TV Tokyo around 1988.
Yes, there was a VCR in my house at this time.
I was able to grasp the contents by looking at them repeatedly.
Home video decks were already on sale in the early 1980s, but they became widespread rapidly in the mid to late 1980s. Even in a house that didn’t have a VCR in 1985, it was in 1988 … I think many people have that kind of memory.
In “Mobile Suit Z Gundam”, not only the three powers of Titans, Eugo, and Axis were mixed up, but there were also powers whose standing position was difficult to understand, such as Jupitris led by Paptimus Scirocco. In the first place, Titans and Eugo themselves are internal organizations of the Earth Federation Forces, and it was difficult for children to see who was fighting for what.
The VCR solved this problem by repeatedly watching the parts that cannot be understood by just watching them once in this broadcast. The fact that the rebroadcast and the popularization period of the VCR just matched may have dramatically increased the popularity of “Z Gundam”.
However, the rebroadcast’s opening used the late OP “With love to the water star” sung by Hiroko Moriguchi throughout the whole story, and the last one was cut a little. It took a few more years before I saw Mami Ayukawa’s previous OP “Z: Beyond the Time”, but this is unavoidable.
When director Yoshiyuki Tomino once appeared on NHK’s “Top Runner”, “‘Z Gundam’ is a work that the management team launched because the sales of other robot works were not good, and it disliked the hearts of fans. I thought it was, but I decided that I had no choice but to do it. “
As a famous anecdote as a fan’s voice at this time, Nobuo Tobita, who plays the main character Camille Bidan, said at the audition, “Why do you need to make a sequel because you had such a good ending?” It can be mentioned.
It was a sequel that neither the creator nor the fans wanted, but Director Tomino said that when he added the letter “Z” to the title, he had a premonition that “this is not the end of Gundam”, in fact, 2022. Currently, “Gundam” is content that is highly evaluated all over the world, and “Z Gundam” is an exceptionally positively assessed work.
The origin of the Gundam world is the first “Mobile Suit Gundam”, but it is probably the driving force that created the concept that “the world of Gundam may have a derivative” and greatly expanded the world itself. Probably “Z Gundam”. In that sense, “Z Gundam” may be said to be the “second origin.”