The second anime that I every reviewed was a little show from the Gundam series called Mobile Suit Gundam 00. A show that was brought into my life right after Code Geass ended, and I decided to review it on this blog because I loved it so much. But I realized that a lot of things happened in the show so I decided to break up the seasons and review them separately. I vowed that I would follow up soon with the second season’s review.
Almost three years later and I still have not done it.
But I am now! This starts the first of, hopefully not too many, follow up reviews that I will do for shows where either I did not review the second season with the first (for some reason) or because it had not yet aired when I reviewed the first season!
So here is the follow up to my 2nd Anime Review and the 1st Sequel Saturday post, the review of Mobile Suit Gundam 00’s Second Season.
*SPOILER WARNING: Since this is a review of the second season there are spoilers for the end of the first season*
Now before we get started if you have not read my review of Gundam 00‘s first season you can check it out here: Mobile Suit Gundam (First Season) Review. I did my reviews much differently back then and went much more into detail on things like characters than I do now. There is also a summary of the plot if you were wondering what happened in the first season, and of course my final verdict on the first season.
Gundam 00‘s second season started airing during October 2008 as a part of the Fall 2008 anime season, and concluded in March of 2009. The show had a total of 25 episodes which brought the entire series to a total of 50 episodes. The second season started only a few months after the first season ended (March to October) so there was not too big of a gap between seasons for those who watched it as it aired.
The story of the second season starts four years after the defeat of Celestial Being by the United Nations. To prevent anything like that happening again the UN becomes the Earth Sphere Federation (ESF), who then develops the independent Autonomous Peace-Keeping Force, or the A-Laws, to stop terrorists uprising and keep major organizations (like the ESF itself) from becoming too powerful. In a complete plot twist, the A-Laws start abusing this power (shocker) but no one is there to stop them. UNTIL Celestial Being reappears to fight the A-Laws.
The addition of both the ESF and the A-Laws was confusing because while they were kind of the same, they were also very different. Both have mobile suit pilots who fight Celestial Being, but at the same time do not work together. This kind of confuses the world that they created in Season 1 because now the UN is not really in the picture any more because the UN merged with AEU and the HRL to become that ESF, and it just gets very confusing. (So many abbreviations!) Some old organizations are still around, but they have either been put together to form the ESF or just are not longer important to the story. It is just frustrating because it felt like the world we had just gotten used to (and understood) in season 1 is now completely different and we have to learn it all over again, and how these changes have changed the characters affiliations.
Sounds confusing right? But wait there’s more!
We find out that one guy who seemed like just an overly involved personal assistant is actually the head of ANOTHER organization who was just waiting to jump into the chaos. We are introduced to the Innovators and are then playing a game of “Guess who the innovator is” to try and see where possible issues could arise. As if there was not enough going on! There are a few additional organizations that were briefly mentioned in the first season that also come play a role in the story in the second season. We also find out that Celestial Being was a much larger organization than originally thought, which begs the question “How come they never helped out before?”
Oh! And for some reason they wear uniforms now. Because why not?
And now for how our character cast has changed. When we left them at the end of season 1 Setsuna was MIA, Allelujah was in…jail?, Lockon was dead, and Tieria was the only one still with Celestial Being. The only “regular” members of the Ptolemy crew left between seasons were Felt, Ian, and Lasse. The others either having died or have left the ship. The rest of the cast outside the Celestial Being crew have pretty much either joined the ESF or the A-Laws. We are reintroduced to the show with Saji, who actually starts being an enjoyable character, as he reunites with Setsuna and ends up finding himself with Celestial Being. So Setsuna’s back but we still only have 2 Gundam meisters. Allelujah is not going to get himself out of captivity, so they’ll have to do something about that, but what about Lockon’s spot? Well, luckily for them Lockon had a twin brother that Setsuna convinces to join Celestial Being as the new Lockon, which is not confusing at all. Sense I could not remember their real names at first I started refering to them as “Eye Patch-Lockon” on and “New Lockon”. It helped differentiate but was still frustrating because here is this character that we came to love in season 1 that died, but is still kind of present in a new way but he had nothing to do with what happened in season 1 whatsoever.
As the show goes on, a good majority of people question just who they are affiliated with or even end up switching sides. Some characters became much more likable, especially Louise who was one of the downsides of the show to me during the first season. Saji also becomes not only more relevant, but much more developed than he was in season 1. He went from a character I was kind of iffy about to one that I loved. Marina, on the other hand, just got worse which was something I never thought could happen. I would go off on a rant about that but I already kinda have and this post would become less about the show and more about this character I hated. They also add even more characters (which seemed impossible with the already large cast this show had) that also added to the growing amount of things we had to get used to in season 2.
The important thing is that the characters do develop, and seeing them question where their loyalties lie was SO good. Major points to Saji on that one. Setsuna….is still Setsuna so while he does change a little bit, it is not as much as you would have liked a main character to this far into a show. I still love him though, that’ll never change. Also! Graham Aker, one of my favorite antagonists from the first season, changed quite a bit between seasons so it was nice to see that change in him as well. As I mentioned back during season 1’s review, the one nice thing about this show is that (for the most part) each character is given their own personality or quirk that sets them apart from everyone else. It makes them easy to remember and follow their part of the story as it goes on. Which is nice with a cast of characters this large.
Sunrise continued the development into season 2 and not much changed between seasons. Some things became more….shinny? if that makes sense but the animation was pretty much the constant beauty that was present in season 1. But it is Sunrise after all, so that’s kind of to be expected. The soundtrack was also pretty well done and both openings and all the endings made their way onto my iPod. While I do not listen to them as much now as I used to, I still like it when they suddenly pop up on shuffle and bring some nostalgia with them.
In all, Gundam 00 is still one of my favorite anime of all time. It is one of my favorite Gundam series of all time, but Iron-Blooded Orphans could give it a run for its money whenever it get around to finishing season 2. The second season did change a lot of the story aspects and character cast that I had gotten used to, and if there had been a test on it I probably would have failed. It did still have all the aspects that I loved from the first season, and changed some problems that I had with the first season.
In the end I award Mobile Suit Gundam 00’s Second Season with an A. Sure the info drop was…a lot but it kind of stirred things up in a way I did not expect. Is it perfect? No. But the nostalgia I get from just watching it is more than enough to make up for it’s flaws. The story lines had me hooked and the characters had me rooting for most of them at every turn.
And that is all that I have for this time! What do you guys think? Have you seen the show and if you have, what was your opinion on it? What is your favorite Gundam series? Let me know down in the comments below!!
See you next time!!
I want to do a Q & A to celebrate the blog’s anniversary on the 19th. If there are any questions you would like to ask me, ask them down below, message me on twitter (@Kachan_Anime), or you can even email me your questions (firstname.lastname@example.org) I would greatly appreciate any questions that you ask. Plus it lets you guys get in on the anniversary fun! You can ask them anytime between now and the 19th, but they will not be answered until the post on the 19th. Oh! And make your you mention it’s for the Anniversary Q & A, I may just think it’s a random question otherwise!