Lacus Clyne (ラクス・クライン Rakusu Kurain?) is a fictional character from the Japanese science fiction anime television series Mobile Suit Gundam SEED and Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny. She is a popular female vocalist and becomes the co-leader of the Clyne Faction.
Personality & Character
Lacus Clyne, in her first few appearances, originally appears to be naive and a bit of an airhead, but it is only due to her idealistic and pacifistic nature. Beneath the surface as a pop star and a PLANT idol, she is actually a quite deep and philosophical person, as she demonstrates when she delivers speeches throughout the series - mainly about the widening rift between Naturals and Coordinators, the ironies of calling for peace yet doing so with weapons in hand, and the real causes of war as being within the human heart itself. As the leader of the Clyne Faction (and later the Three Ships Alliance and Terminal), Lacus is very charismatic, strong-willed, and determined to see their fight for peace through to the end. Like her father, Siegel Clyne, Lacus wishes to see a world where Naturals and Coordinators would willingly work together and coexist in harmony, disregarding the notion that Coordinators are an evolved species. Being a pacifist, Lacus holds a strong dislike for war, expressing that they are simply started and repeated through a neverending cycle of attack and retaliation.
Skills & Abilities
Because Lacus is a coordinator, her mind and body are enhanced above a normal human's abilities; the full aspects of her abilities are undefined. Lacus' most outstanding talents lie with singing and dancing, as she developed into an influential cultural pop-icon in PLANT. She is shown to have a good sense of delegation and command for those that work under her. Lacus Clyne has the ability to enter SEED mode as well. When in SEED-mode, her delegation and coordination abilities are enhanced for commanding the Eternal; her full abilities are unknown.
Lacus Clyne is the daughter of PLANT Supreme Council Chairman Siegel Clyne. She is a Coordinator whose career as an idol singer has brought her enormous popularity in the PLANTs. She is engaged to Athrun Zala for political reasons; although they get along, it's unclear if there is love or just friendship between them. As the Bloody Valentine War goes on, Lacus meets and falls in love with Kira Yamato.
Meeting Kira Yamato
When she is dispatched on the civilian space vessel Silverwind to the ruins of Junius Seven for an up-coming memorial service, her vessel is attacked by an Earth Alliance Nelson-class battleship, led by information by Kenav Luchini to believe that the vessel is actually a military ship. A fight breaks out aboard the ship, but not before a lifepod carrying Lacus is jettisoned, and departs safety away due to the efforts of Junk Guild tech Lowe Guele in his MBF-P02 Astray Red Frame. Her lifepod is subsequently rescued by the GAT-X105 Strike and brought to the Archangel.
Even though they are technically enemies, Lacus is kind and respectful towards everybody on board the Archangel, and most of them treat her the same way. (Sai Argyle does question whether the reason she has such a lovely singing voice is due to her genetic alterations.) However, Flay Allster refuses to shake hands and scorns her kindness because she is a Coordinator.
Later, when Flay's father's escort is attacked by ZAFT forces, Flay drags Lacus to the bridge and says that she will kill Lacus if ZAFT does not cease their attack at once. Before anyone can react her father dies when his ship, the Montgomery, explodes. Lacus' expression shows compassion towards Flay, despite being threatened by her. As the ZAFT forces continue their assault, Natarle Badgiruel informs them that the Archangel has Lacus on board, thus prompting them to withdraw. When Kira nearly has an emotional breakdown on one of the observation decks due to Flay's abusive words, Lacus does her best to comfort him and learns they share a friendship with Athrun.
Kira later smuggles Lacus off the Archangel and returns her to Athrun, who once again beseeches him to join ZAFT. As before, Kira turns him down because he wants to protect his friends on board the Archangel. This saddens Lacus; she knows that Kira and Athrun are both good people and are forced to fight one another because of this war. As Athrun returns to the Vesalius with Lacus, Rau Le Creuset launches in his ZGMF-515 CGUE to begin an assault on the Archangel. Lacus quickly picks up the intercom and orders him to stop his aggression at once, due to her being a memorial representative of Junius Seven. When Athrun visits Lacus at her home in PLANTs, they discuss about Kira and she mentions to Athrun that she is "fond" of Kira.
Second meeting with Kira
Late in the war, a wounded Kira is brought to Lacus' home by Clyne family friend Reverend Malchio. Lacus nurses Kira back to health with the help of her father and Malchio, and assures him that he's welcome to stay as long as he wants and that he's safe in the Clyne home. However, when Siegel Clyne receives word of Patrick Zala's deception - that the target for Operation: Spitbreak was the Earth Alliance base JOSH-A in Alaska, instead of the intended Panama base - Kira wants to return to Earth to save his friends aboard the Archangel. In response, Lacus provides Kira with a ZAFT Red uniform and helps him steal the ZGMF-X10A Freedom. Lacus also grants Kira "her strength" by means of a kiss to his cheek, showing him that he has her support and affections.Because of her helping Kira, Lacus and her father Siegel are declared as traitors. As part of the "Clyne Faction", they try to inform the people about the genocidal ambitions of Patrick Zala, and Siegel is gunned down by ZAFT soldiers under Patrick Zala's command. While in hiding, Lacus meets with Athrun, and her views of the war help lead to his final decision concerning who he wants to fight for. Just then, soldiers of the PLANT radical faction try to assassinate her but she and Athrun are saved by members of the Clyne Faction, notably Martin DaCosta.
Three Ships Alliance
Near the end of the Bloody Valentine War, she leaves the PLANTs with her stolen support ship Eternal and joins the Orb Union-owned Kusanagi and the recently defected Archangel to form the Three Ships Alliance, a group dedicated to stopping the war. Upon seeing Kira again, she tells him about the death of her father and weeps bitterly. In the manga, when the Junk Guild vessel ReHOME joins the Three Ships Alliance as a tender ship, Lacus finally meets the man who saved Kira's life (as well as her own), none other than Junk Guild tech, Lowe Guele.
When Kira discovers his origins as the product of the Ultimate Coordinator project and becomes depressed, Lacus comforts him by saying that meeting him has made her so happy, despite all the sadness she has endured up to this point. Lacus finally admits to Kira her love for him when she gives him a ring before the final battle at Jachin Due and tells him to come back to her safely. Kira thanks her for this and seals his promise to return with a kiss to her cheek. During the battle, Lacus tried to persuade both sides to cease firing the weapons of mass destruction, but failed.
In episode 49, Lacus reveals her ability to go into SEED mode: her pupils become dilated, like characters who go into SEED mode, after she gives a discourse about war and death, but no accompanying seed explosion is seen; the same dilation is seen in episode 50 of Gundam SEED Destiny, again with no seed explosion.
Gundam SEED Destiny
Life at Orb
At the start of Gundam SEED Destiny, Lacus is living with Kira at Reverend Malchio's orphanage in the Marshall Islands until a disaster forces her, Kira, the Reverend, and the orphanage children to move in with Andrew Waltfeld and Murrue Ramius at their shared mansion in Orb. Meanwhile, PLANT Supreme Council Chairman Gilbert Durandal, in need of political clout, showcases Meer Campbell as Lacus, using her to influence the populace. The real Lacus is almost killed in an assassination attempt by Coordinators from the "Coordinator special forces". But their plans are disrupted by Kira who fights off the assassins with the Freedom. She, along with Murrue, Kira, Andrew, Cagalli Yula Athha, and most of the Archangel's crew reunited hoping to stop the new war. Lacus acts as the CIC officer for the Archangel until Cagalli takes over. (Ultimately, Kira's old friend Miriallia Haw would take over this position.)
Return to space
Lacus, along with Andrew later hijacks a shuttle (which was meant for Lacus' double, Meer Campbell) to go into space, to see what the situation is at the PLANTs. They rejoin the crew of the Eternal and the Terminal factory satellite. In the Special Edition, the scene is edited so that Kira begs her to let him come along. Despite her personal feelings for Kira, she tells him he must remain on Earth to help Cagalli and the Archangel. In the original Gundam SEED Destiny, Kira made the choice of staying back himself. After the shuttle is found, Durandal declares that she is an impostor.
When Lacus and the crew of the Eternal are discovered and attacked by ZAFT again (due to an intelligence-gathering error made by Martin DaCosta), she and the ship try to deliver the newly-built Strike Freedom and Infinite Justice mobile suits to Kira and Athrun on Earth. Kira arrives in space via Cagalli's Strike Rouge and is nearly killed when his mobile suit is severely damaged. Andy uses his ZGMF-X88S Gaia to provide Kira enough cover to retreat to the Eternal, where his new mobile suit is awaiting. Aboard, Kira and Lacus are reunited and share an emotional embrace and words of happiness at seeing each other again. Lacus then takes Kira to his new mobile suit, the Strike Freedom; once again, she wears a worried expression, much like she did when Kira wanted to pilot the Freedom to save her in Orb. After Kira saves her and the Eternal, she takes the Infinite Justice to Orb herself, giving Kira the freedom to participate in the already-heated battle in Orb. She lands on the Archangel and her words again help Athrun decide on what he wants to do concerning the second war.
Ending the confusion
When Meer interrupts Cagalli's television broadcast following the Second Battle of Onogoro, Lacus subsequently interrupts as well, revealing her presence and the fact that Meer is an impostor. Most people are shocked, including the Joule Team and the Minerva crew; even Durandal himself is perplexed that Lacus is in Orb. In her broadcast she also denounces Chairman Durandal's agenda, but also states she does not support Lord Djibril either: she says that the war is the responsibility of everyone, for they created this type of world. After the broadcast, the world and the PLANTs argue over who is the real Lacus.
Later, Lacus and Kira reveal to the crew of the Archangel that Durandal intends to assign behavioral genes to every human being in order to render war and conflict obsolete. By doing this, no one can make a decision if their future was planned. Terminal vows to stop Durandal from implementing his radical "Destiny Plan."
After the sudden attack on PLANT by Lord Djibril's Requiem, Lacus goes back to space aboard the Archangel. She joins Athrun, Kira, and Meyrin Hawke in information gathering on the Moon, where they are contacted by Meer. Even though Athrun and Meyrin think it is a trap, Lacus chooses to meet Meer. Lacus tries to convince Meer to stop working for Durandal; however, they are attacked. Athrun, Kira, and Meyrin deal with the attackers, but Meer ends up dying in Lacus' arms after taking the shot that was originally meant to kill Lacus. After a funeral on the Archangel, Lacus and the others read Meer's diary and are visibly moved. When Durandal appears on a television broadcast, Lacus looks at him with an expression which had never been seen on her.
During the final stages of Gundam SEED Destiny, Lacus leads Terminal and the bulk of the forces that stand in the way between Durandal and the implementing of the Destiny Plan. She once again tried to convince the ZAFT forces to stand down and remind them of the principles of humanity. However, believing she was a fake and part of Logos, ZAFT forces attacked.
After the death of Chairman Durandal, Lacus Clyne is invited back to the PLANTs to serve as a mediator between the PLANTs and the other nations. At the end of Gundam SEED Destiny "Final Plus", she is shown walking towards the PLANT Supreme Council. Lacus Clyne becomes Chairwoman of the PLANT Supreme Council. The final installment of the Gundam SEED Destiny: Special Edition reveals Kira, in a white ZAFT commander uniform reuniting with Lacus in the PLANTs. They share a familiar embrace, startling other some members of ZAFT.
Lacus is usually accompanied by a pink Haro (Mr. Pink, Pink-chan in the original Japanese version) given to her by Athrun Zala, who has a penchant for making small robotic contraptions (such as Kira’s Birdy). Over time Athrun made her more Haros in many different colors. Mr. Pink is usually there to keep her company when everyone else is away, and she often talks to it despite the fact that Mr. Pink has a very limited vocabulary. After the Bloody Valentine War, it held the two keys to the Freedom's secret hangar. Haros are considered to be the mascot of Gundam, appearing in several other series in the Universal Century timeline, but Athrun's Haros are visibly smaller than the Universal Century originals.
Lacus is a Pilot in Dynasty Warriors: Gundam 2 piloting the Infinite Justice like Athrun.
She often shows her worrying of Kira getting hurt and also encourages Kira and Athrun throughout the game. In a collection mission she is seen piloting a ball and makes references to Haro. Also in some missions she can appear asking for the players help to find Haro. If the player finds Haro, Lacus becomes an ally and gives the player an advantage in the current mission.
Lacus is also playable in Gundam Vs. series in Alliance vs ZAFT 2 and SD Gundam Generation Wars/Spirits, unlike in Dynasty Warriors, she does not have a default unit.
Lacus makes her first appearance in the Super Robot Wars franchise with Super Robot Wars Judgement. She appears on board the Eternal alongside Andrew Waltfield. The big difference here is that, unlike the game's other battleships (the Archangel and Martian Successor Nadesico's Nadesico), the Eternal is a selectable unit. Lacus can be switched with Andrew as the captain before launch. She's also seen possessing a SEED mode.
Lacus develops a relationship with Relena Darlian in the Dynasty Warriors: Gundam and Super Robot Wars games.
- Mitsuo Fukuda, the director of Gundam SEED, claimed in a 2003 interview that he drew inspiration from actress Audrey Hepburn for the creation of Lacus' character.
- Three of her songs Shizukana Yoruni (In the Quiet Night), Mizu no Akashi, and Fields of Hope can be found in the various Gundam SEED soundtracks and music albums.
- Chantal Strand also voiced Feldt Grace from Mobile Suit Gundam 00.
- English voice actress Chantal Strand who voiced Lacus also voiced Kazumi Yoshida from Shakugan no Shana. Lacus and Flay's English voice actresses, Chantal Strand and Tabitha St. Germain, play a similar love triangle relationship role with Kazumi Yoshida and Shana from Shakugan no Shana.
- Chantal Strand also voiced Diamond Tiara in My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, which is much stranger considering that Maryke Hendrikse voiced Spitfire, Matt Hill voiced Soarin' and Tabitha St. Germain voiced Rarity. Who in turn, those actors portrayed Lunamaria Hawke, Kira Yamato and Flay Allster.
- In Gundam SEED: Rengou vs ZAFT series, it is possible to designate Lacus as a pilot of a mobile suit. However, her statistic points are considered as one of the worst in the game. In Gundam Musou series, it is possible for the player to put Lacus in the ∞ Justice, yet her statistic points are far worse than Athrun Zala's, the default pilot of the mobile suit. Maxed out however, she has a much greater Shot stat than Athrun and Defense on par with his. In the PS3 version of Gundam Extreme Vs. Full Boost, Lacus can be obtained as free DLC as an alternate pilot for the Infinite Justice with the suit's cost slashed down to 1000, lacking the ability to ride the sublifter and having the kick combo removed in lieu of Strike Freedom as an assist.
- Lacus can arouse her SEED Factor in Super Robot Wars series. The game show her SEED Factor phase animation, unlike in the TV series.
- Lacus has created a remakable record in the history of Animage's Anime Grand Prix award. She won the first place four times in 2002, 2004, 2005 and 2006 as the best female anime character, plus a couple of times selected as the runner up. It is a feat that not only can not be defeated by any other Gundam characters, but can not be equaled by any other anime characters in general, even by male anime characters.
- Despite being one of her most popular roles, Rie Tanaka said at her appearance at the 2008 New York Anime Festival that Lacus is the hardest character she played so far.
- Lacus's exit from her escape pod in episodes 7 and 8 of Gundam Seed is a nod to Lalah Sune's exit from Char's shuttle in episode 34 ("The Glory of Solomon") of Mobile Suit Gundam.
- In an episode of Seed, Lacus draws a Turn A Gundam-like moustache on her dark-blue Haro.
- Lacus is the first ever female leader of the PLANT Supreme Council. Eileen Canaver was only acting Chairwoman until Gilbert Durandal replaced her as permanent Chairman of the PLANT Supreme Council.
- ↑ "Lacus was Audrey Hepburn." -- Mitsuo Fukuda, at his appearance at Kyoto University
- ↑ AnimeVice.com: NYAF08: Interview with Rie Tanaka
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