Gundam Iron-Blooded Orphans 1

I haven’t picked up a Gundam series in a long time, and have no idea what to expect from Iron-Blooded Orphans. My experience with the director, Tatsuyuki Nagai, is hit and miss. I enjoyed some of his work like Honey & Clover, and Toradora, but despised the melodrama in the most recent anime by him, Anohana. Mari Okada is also working on series composition, and I generally like her framing and use of color.  The rest of the staff I haven’t heard of, but it sounds promising enough to at least check out. So lets get started!

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00:27 – Typical Gundam start with kids in wars holding guns.

01:01 – Sunrise always has great mech designs. I can already tell its going to look bad ass.

02:30 – Just imagine playing paintball with these vehicles on the field.

02:40 – The tongue is a fun touch.

03:16 – The same face syndrome strikes again! Though the other two we saw earlier, tan man and biscuit, had more distinguishing features.

04:07 – Natural conversation which leads to learning a lot about the characters. I already know Mika is carefree, Eugene is an aggressor, and Biscuit is a mediator.

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04:35 – Sunrise did a great job making her look noble.  I think it’s the hairdo which gives the design the over the top ojou hime feel.

05:29 – More great dialogue granting insight into character personalities within a few moments. Aina is naive, empathetic, curious, and already aware of the world around her.

06:44 – These characters have way more defining facial features to tell them apart other than their hair.

08:01 – Is that supposed to be a bullet wound on his back?

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08:13 – Definitely not bullet wounds. Great visual way to bring them into the shot without it being too awkward. Hopefully they will find a way to explain them visually instead of with exposition. The script writer has been doing a great job moving things along at a brisk pace while still remaining relatively easy to understand.

08:56 – Oh look! I know why they have those holes on their back now, and barely a sentence was said.

09:47 – “independence for Chryse” sounds very similar to independence for Christ. I doubt this will play an important role in Iron-Blooded orphans though.

09:49 – Can’t be an anime without fan service.

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11:28 – Captured the stunned look on Aina’s face. Someone is unused to being disrespected.

12:10 – Harsh words which speak of the truth. If one has to say they are on equal terms for it to be balanced, then it isn’t at all.

13:32 – Not subtle at all, but I guess it gets the point across. This Gundam in particular is incredibly powerful.

13:42 – That picked up quickly.

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15:56 – I never enjoyed Gundam action that much. Most of the Gundam fights end up being bullets being traded, and even the more dynamic fights never match the energy of drawn hand to hand combat.

16:41 – What a luxurious life. Aina has never even entertained the thought of death before.

19:40 – This mecha design brings back memories from my Gundam Seed days.

21:44 – Sunrise makes sure to raise the hype levels for the turn around with some epic music. A smattering of small acoustic guitars here and there along with the base transforms into an explosion of the violins when Mika appears.

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22:31 – The Mobile Suits cause them to bleed? Also seems like one of the main themes of Iron-Blooded Orphans is to find a feeling of belonging in the world.

A solid premiere from Gundam this time around. Unlike the more eccentric Tomino Gundams it looks like Iron-Blooded Orphans is going to take a very direct approach to their narrative. They started with a simple introduction episode, and focused on their execution.  Each character had a small moment of screen time revealing the prominent traits of their personality through expressive facial features and well written dialogue. This allows the show to quickly move into the action, while introducing the main conflict between the mars independence rebel group and Gjallarhorn, the earth military force. There are still many ways Iron-Blooded Orphans can go wrong, but I’m hopeful for a decent action packed war drama.

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