[Great Gundam Wing Rewatch] Episodes 9 & 10
Oh man, episode ten is feels central and episode nine has Heero in goddamn gym shorts mmm. What a jump from sexy gym shorts to, well, feels.
IN THESE TWO EPISODES the plot thickens more and there will be plenty of tech geekery stats shit and possibly pictures of Heero and Duo in short as fuck gym shorts. That latter point is what you all came here for right? Mmm.
Episode 9 – Portrait of a Ruined Country
What is this ruined country that Zechs has a portrait of? Does he have an actual portrait or is it just metaphor? Why the hell does Zechs wear that stupid mask? Let’s find out! (Or not, in the case of why he wears that stupid helmet.)
Our opening music is still “Just Communication”, and though the introduction is similar to the past eight or so episodes, it focuses now more on OZ and the Gundams, because it has to advance with the plot too you know. Or something like that.
Does anyone know if Zechs’ title is “Lightning Baron” or “Lightning Count”? I mean it seems like some people use one over the other, but there’s a difference between a “baron” and a “count” in peerage, and Zechs is a baron in Romefeller, so probably “Lightning Baron” would make the most sense. In the Japanese version of this scene, he’s called “Lightning Baron” but the subtitles say “Lightning Count”, thus making this whole thing even more confusing. We’ll just call him Zechs, it’s easier.
Otto is also pretty ravaged from piloting Tallgeese. Only the most hardcore of pilots can pilot the Tallgeese and I guess Otto is not one of them. Or, you know, you don’t have to have the thrusters set to maximum, but that’s just me. Tallgeese has three times the speed of an Aries. So how much speed does an Aries have? Well, let’s just say that the Leo still beats it, and the Tallgeese beats them both, and Tallgeese is 20 years old whereas the Leo and especially Aries are pretty new.
So what is Zechs’ motivation for this episode? Well he wants to free Sanc from Alliance control, I guess by slapping them around a little in Tallgeese until they realise how wrong they were. Will this work? Who knows. I guess we’ll find out.
Here’s what we all waited for though:
Now that that’s out of the way…
Duo tells Heero to act like a normal 15 year old if he wants to not stick out so much since Heero shrugging off all the attention from the ladies and acting all mysterious will just make people more suspicious.
The history of the Alliance: basically they were originally supposed to handle disputes between countries but then their military force became quite large and all the countries all became One World and shit slowly rolled downhill from there.
Zechs shows hesitation and I think the reason why he hesitates is because a.) Sanc and b.) he’s actually afraid he’ll end up dying due to Tallgeese’s power so c.) he’ll die before freeing Sanc and then what good is that since it would still be under Alliance control.
MEANWHILE in a desert somewhere, the Maganacs decide to lecture Quatre on running off because apparently he’s still just a kid and they’re his bodyguards and so forth.
“Quatre won’t leave on his own anymore.”
“Mmhm! I promise!” Except we all know you will, Quatre, who are you trying to fool like at least tell Rashid where you’re running off to? When Rashid asks him how everything was, Quatre explains that he met the rest of the pilots and, “They’re violent and dangerous but they’re all nice guys.” When Rashid asks him how he can tell, he responds that the “soul of outer space tells me.”
Whatever you say, Quatre.
Apparently if you pilot Tallgeese you end up with irregularities in your circulation which is a Bad Thing and it’s due to the G forces you get from piloting the damn thing. I guess OZ doesn’t train their soldiers to handle G forces above a certain threshold? Which is kind of dumb when you think about it, especially if you want them to fight on Earth and in space and go from one to the other. You’re gonna encounter all sorts of G force.
“I still have a long way to go before I can conquer my own fears.” So Zechs is basically scared of dying. Death means failure. There is a lot of that mentality in this series, probably because everyone is on some kind of suicide mission for one reason or another. Hell, even Otto realises that the Gundams are on a suicide mission for peace.
One of my favourite scenes is this one with Relena, which is towards the end of the episode:
Most remarkable is its [Wing’s] mobility as an aircraft. We’ll lure it to an Aries air zone and shoot it down. Without its wings, we can overcome it in a long battle. 02’s [Deathscythe’s] features allow it to remain unnoticed. It specializes in close combat. It is important to make 03 [Heavyarms] use up all of its firepower at an early stage. 04 [Sandrock] is also a close-range battle type but we believe its battle range is broader than 02. Avoid direct combat with 05 [Shenlong/Nataku]. Barrage until it’s destroyed. Be extremely cautious of the firepower in its left arm.
Une has all of this technical stuff about the first four Gundams and then for Wufei she basically says AVOID LIKE THE PLAGUE ahaha. She makes a point to talk about Wing, but Zechs is the one who’s going to deal with him, so I don’t see why it matters, but whatever.
“Dare da?!” The way Heero says this, he was probably ready to shoot whoever was at his door, which would have not been a good thing since Duo is the one in the doorway. He’s just come to say goodbye before he goes off and blows up some mobile suits. If you’re doing some secret shit with Dr J, maybe you should lock your door? Just a suggestion.
Apparently Gundams can flip entire trains o_o I’m not surprised but at the same time I am surprised. A whole train! All because Quatre tripped and landed on the tracks. Would a train even really scratch up a Gundam? They weigh like 7 and a half tons, or at least Sandrock does. Apparently your average train can weigh between 3 and 8 tons. I don’t think it would do much, though speed could be a factor… But even so, maybe it would just knock Sandrock either off the track or further along, but I don’t think it would do much damage. And really, if Duo wanted to effectively detrail the train he should’ve just kicked the last car off and it would cause a domino effect. (What a showoff he is!)
Anyway. Zechs thinks Heero wants to duel–what is this, Yu-Gi-Oh!? I don’t think you’d want to duel with Heero, Zechs, have you seen what he does to people he fences with? He’s really underestimating Heero and that is…not a good idea. Heero puts up a good fight and Zechs is kind of like OOPS HE’S BETTER THAN I EXPECTED and then when Dr J interrupts everyone and Heero comes out to surrender, Zechs and everyone else is just like, “wtf he’s just a little kid!”
I wouldn’t call 15 “a little kid”, but yeah, he is just a kid, albeit one who could launch a grown man into orbit very easily if he wanted to, but a kid nonetheless.
So Une decides to use the Colonies as a bargaining chip. If Heero runs or attacks, well, say goodbye to half of the colonies! Whether Une would’ve actually done anything, who knows. It’s Une, so the answer is probably “yes, yes she would have definitely blown them to kingdom come no questions asked”. I’ve meta’d about this scene on Tumblr before, because people have screamed OH HEERO IS SO STUPID TO BLOW HIMSELF UP OBVIOUSLY HE WANTED TO DIE AND THIS WAS THE PERFECT EXCUSE.
Well. No. Logistically speaking, Heero had four choices:
- Surrender and be taken in by OZ soldiers who would likely interrogate him relentlessly on who is giving him orders, where he’s from, what his mission is, etc.
- Run and risk Une not bluffing with the colonies; you also can’t run forever and where would he go when he’s in the middle of nowhere? He would be caught, which would lead to #1.
- Destroy all evidence, which would include the Gundam and himself. They can’t find out anything if it’s all destroyed, and they can’t interrogate someone who is dead.
- Blow up Wing and make it look like he died as well. They can’t interrogate a dead guy, and if they assume he’s dead, they won’t go looking for him.
Well #1 is definitely out, since he’s on a “secret” mission. #2 is out because the colonies are what the pilots are fighting for. So he has door 3 or door 4. #4 done incorrectly could lead to #3, but really either option is fine. Heero picks #4.
In episode 10 of the series, Heero stands out on the hatch. In Glory of Losers, Heero stands above the cockpit, right below the head of Wing. When you self-detonate a Gundam, all the fun stuff for that is in the cockpit, which is around the Gundam’s power source. The worst place to be with a self-detonating Gundam is right in the cockpit. That is the first thing to go and it is the one that gets completely destroyed. Everything else is collateral damage from the explosion. The head goes because of the fact that it is wired to the cockpit–the head is the external cameras. Standing on top of or in front of the cockpit launches you into the air, so what would kill you is getting impaled by shrapnel (or environmental objects such as trees or fences) or falling to your death. If you know the correct way to fall from specific heights you will likely survive with a lot of broken bones and maybe something punctured (like a lung from your ribs breaking).
If Heero wanted to die, he would’ve just sat in the cockpit. But also, who the hell would survive a fall like that?
Either way, this is totally the face of fear and regret over life choices:
Yep definitely an “oh fuck” face.
Heero blows up Wing, Quatre gets hit hard in the feels, Duo is absolutely shocked that it came to something like this, all because “they bluffed with the colonies.”
Trowa takes Heero after Zechs lets them get away. Pretty sure Trowa thinks Heero is either dying from shock due to his injuries or is, in fact, already dead since Heero’s pretty covered in his own blood (but not really enough to kill him).
This is where the major conflict really starts to roll… Now the Gundams can’t fight. Where do/can they go from here? It’s only a matter of time before something else happens…
Une calls the Colonies “insignificant worlds”, showing probably the general opinion of how people on Earth tend to view the Colonies.