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Mobile Suit Gundam

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Mobile Suit Gundam


Mobile Suit Gundam (機動戦士ガンダム, Kidō Senshi Gandamu)


Story & Script
Character Design
Mechanical Designer
Art Director


Japanese April 7, 1979 - January 26, 1980
English July 23, 2001 - June 2, 2002
Number of Episodes 43

Mobile Suit Gundam (機動戦士ガンダム Kidō Senshi Gandamu?, Mobile Warrior Gundam) is a 1979 anime television series created by Yoshiyuki Tomino and Hajime Yatate. Yoshikazu Yasuhiko did the character designs and Kunio Okawara was responsible for the mechanical designs, including the titular giant robot, the RX-78-2 Gundam. It started the Gundam metaseries and Real Robot genre of mecha anime. The series was later re-edited for theatrical release and split into three movies.


It is the year Universal Century 0079 and the space colonies have declared war on the Earth Federation under the guidance of the Principality of Zeon. In one of these colonies, the Earth Federation is storing and testing a new piloted robot for use in the battle against the Principality of Zeon.

The experimental RX-78 Gundam mobile suit is forced into combat with a civilian pilot and an untested crew before it can be transported to the Federation's HQ on Earth. With few resources available against the Zeon's brightest and best, will they be able to escape, let alone deliver the RX-78 to Earth?[1]


Comprehensive Episode Listing of Mobile Suit Gundam episodes

# Episode Title Japanese Airdate English Airdate
1 Gundam Rising 7 April 1979 23 July 2001
2 Destroy Gundam! 14 April 1979 24 July 2001
3 Vote to Attack 21 April 1979 25 July 2001
4 Escape from Luna II 28 April 1979 26 July 2001
5 Re-Entry to Earth 5 May 1979 27 July 2001
6 Garma Strikes 12 May 1979 30 July 2001
7 The Core Fighter's Escape 18 May 1979 31 July 2001
8 Winds of War 26 May 1979 1 August 2001
9 Fly! Gundam 2 June 1979 2 August 2001
10 Garma's Fate 9 June 1979 3 August 2001
11 Icelina- Love's Remains 16 June 1979 6 August 2001
12 The Threat of Zeon 23 June 1979 7 August 2001
13 Coming Home 30 June 1979 8 August 2001
14 Time, Be Still 6 July 1979 9 August 2001
15 Cucuruz Doan's Island 14 July 1979
16 Sayla's Agony 21 July 1979 10 August 2001
17 Amuro Deserts 28 July 1979 13 August 2001
18 Zeon's Secret Mine 4 August 1979 14 August 2001
19 Ramba Ral's Attack 11 August 1979 15 August 2001
20 Hand-to-Hand Combat 18 August 1979 16 August 2001
21 Sorrow and Hatred 25 August 1979 17 August 2001
22 The Trap of M'Quve 1 September 1979 20 August 2001
23 Matilda's Rescue 8 September 1979 21 August 2001
24 Black Tri-Star 15 September 1979 22 August 2001
25 The Battle of Odessa 22 September 1979 23 August 2001
26 Char Returns 29 September 1979 24 August 2001
27 A Spy on Board 6 October 1979 27 August 2001
28 Across the Atlantic Ocean 13 October 1979 28 August 2001
29 Tragedy In Jaburo 20 October 1979 29 August 2001
30 A Wish of War Orphans 27 October 1979 30 August 2001
31 A Decoy in Space 3 November 1979 31 August 2001
32 Breakthrough 10 November 1979 3 September 2001
33 Farewell in Side 6 17 November 1979 4 September 2001
34 A Fateful Encounter 24 November 1979 5 September 2001
35 The Glory of Solomon 1 December 1979 6 September 2001
36 Big Zam's Last Stand 8 December 1979 7 September 2001
37 The Duel in Texas 15 December 1979 10 September 2001
38 Char and Sayla 22 December 1979 9 April 2002
39 The Newtype: Challia Bull 29 December 1979 12 September 2001
40 Lalah's Dilemma 5 January 1980 2 June 2002
41 A Cosmic Glow 12 January 1980 2 June 2002
42 Space Fortress: A Baoa Qu 19 January 1980 2 June 2002
43 Escape 26 January 1980 31 December 2001

Compilation Movies

Following the success of the Mobile Suit Gundam TV series, Yoshiyuki Tomino returned in 1981 and reworked the footage into three separate compilation movies. The first two movies, Mobile Suit Gundam(機動戦士ガンダムⅠ) and Mobile Suit Gundam: Soldiers of Sorrow(機動戦士ガンダムⅡ哀・戦士編,Kidō Senshi Gundam II: Ai Senshi), were released in 1981. The third movie, Mobile Suit Gundam: Encounters in Space(機動戦士ガンダムⅢ めぐりあい宇宙編,Kidō Senshi Gundam III: Meguriai Sora), was released in 1982.

Each of the three movies are largely composed of old footage from the TV series, however Tomino felt that some things could be changed for the better. Tomino removed several aspects of the show which he felt were still too super robot-esque for the real robot series he intended Gundam to be, such as the Gundam Hammer weapon. The G-Armor upgrade parts were also completely removed and replaced in the narrative by the more realistic Core Booster support fighters, and Hayato receives a Guncannon at Jaburo to replace the disadvantaged Guntank. The third movie also includes a substantial amount of new footage expanding on the battles of Solomon and A Baoa Qu.

The three compilation movies were released originally dubbed in English in the late 1990s to the early 2000s, with a different vocal cast than the English TV show dub, direct to VHS. They then were released again both separately and in a DVD box set in America on May 7, 2002. However, the DVD is only available in Japanese audio with English subtitles. This DVD boxset is identical to the 20th anniversary release of the movie compilation DVDs. The original voice cast members rerecorded their lines with the exception of those who were deceased. The 20th anniversary release is digitally remastered but many of the sound effects are replaced, most notably the futuristic gun sounds being replaced by louder machine gun sound effects. Also, the music soundtrack, while not remixed is rearranged and in some cases removed from some scenes. The vocal songs are rearranged also, especially in the closing credits of the second and third movies. These changes, which were supervised by Tomino, have been criticized by fans.



From left to right;
Top: Kai Shiden, Ryu Jose, Amuro Ray, Fraw Bow, Sayla Mass, Mirai Yashima and Bright Noa;
Bottom: Hayato Kobayashi, Katz Hawin, Letz Cofan and Kikka Kikimoto.

Earth Federation

Further information: see main article Earth Federation


Principality of Zeon, from left to right: Gihren Zabi, Dozle Zabi, Degwin Zabi, Kycilia Zabi, Garma Zabi and Char Aznable .

Principality of Zeon



Principality of Zeon

Mobile Suits

Mobile Armors

Vehicles and Support Units

Earth Federation

Mobile Suits

Mobile Pod

Mobile Armor

Vehicles and Support Units

Side 6

Vehicles and Support Units


  • Tobe! Gundam (Fly! Gundam) by Koh Ikeda (TV series opening)
  • Pathetic, but Decisive
  • Eien Ni Amuro (Forever Amuro) by Koh Ikeda (TV series ending)
  • Suna no Juujika (Cross of Sand) by Takajin Yashiki (Movie I ending)
  • Ai Senshi (Soldiers of Sorrow) by Daisuke Inoue (Movie II: Soldiers of Sorrow ending)
  • Meguriai (Encounters) by Daisuke Inoue (Movie III: Encounters in Space ending)

Note: On Cartoon Network's Toonami and Adult Swim airings, :45 opening and ending sequences were used in place of the Japanese TV openings and endings. These opening and ending sequences are also used in the Bandai releases from Volume 4-10.


The series was not popular when it first aired, and was in fact canceled before the series was intended to end. The series was originally set to run for 52 episodes and was cut down to 39 by the show's sponsors, which included the original toy-makers, Clover, for the series. Luckily, the staff was able to negotiate a one month extension to end the series with 43 episodes. ĥ The idea of Mobile Suit came from the powered suits from the military science fiction novel Starship Troopers. Yoshiyuki Tomino reused ideas from various Sunrise Super Robot anime he had worked on e.g. Char Aznable was partially inspired by Prince Sharkin from Brave Reideen.

When Bandai received the licensing to the show's mecha, however, things changed completely. With the introduction of their line of Gundam models, the popularity of the show began to soar. The models sold very well, and the show began to do very well in reruns and even better in its theatrical compilation. Audiences were expecting another giant robot show, and instead found MS Gundam, the first work of anime in an entirely new genre, the Real Robot genre as opposed to the Super Robot genre.


Mobile Suit Gundam originally aired on the Nagoya Broadcasting Network. Much like the original Star Trek, the original Gundam was not appreciated by its initial audience, and also like Star Trek, proceeded to spawn a massive sci-fi franchise, spawning numerous sequels, model kits, and video-games up to the present day.

One of the first countries other than Japan where Mobile Suit Gundam was broadcasted was Italy, where it began airing on TMC in the February of 1980.

Following the success of the English dub of Mobile Suit Gundam Wing, the Ocean Group dubbed Mobile Suit Gundam in English. It premiered on Monday, July 23, 2001 on Cartoon Network's Toonami in the US. It did very well, but it was later canceled before the entire series was shown . This was due to the September 11, 2001 attacks occurring. Immediately following the attacks Cartoon Network, and many other stations, began pulling war-themed content and violent programming as well. Although Cowboy Bebop came back before too long, Mobile Suit Gundam did not. However, the last episodes were shown as part of Toonami's "New Year's Eve-il" special on December 31, 2001. It is sometimes stated that Mobile Suit Gundam was canceled because of the September 11, 2001 attacks. While this is likely why it was taken off initially, it is not sufficient to explain why the show didn't return. Aside from fan speculation, the source of this seems to be an anonymous report which appeared on the fan-site on September 14, purporting to summarize an internal Cartoon Network memo. This report can be seen in The Internet Wayback Machine.

On Saturday, June 8, 2002 the series was given another chance by Cartoon Network in their late-night Adult Swim block, but it was again pulled before completing its run.

In both American TV showings and on the American DVD release, the fifteenth episode was cut out. It was felt by Tomino, that this episode was not up to par with the rest of the series and so it was never dubbed, making it into a "lost episode" of sorts.

The Mobile Suit Gundam Blu-ray Memorial Box Set was first released in Japan on August 28, 2013, with a launch price of 36,750 yen. The 9 disc set includes all 43 episodes remastered with bonus features, but being a Japnese only release, it has no English subtitles or audio. Contained within the newly drawn box is the set with Yoshikazu Yasuhiko's & Kunio Okawara's newly drawn cover art, episode 1's scenario, storyboards, and script, a production exposition collection (includes series proposal, original key animation, each scene's final manuscript, rough drafts, and more) as well as a "memorial album". The album holds events that happened during broadcast, magazine articles and future events, and the handbook included with the LD-Box. Bonus footage includes the July 2010 interview with Director Yoshiyuki Tomino, Character designer Yoshikazu Yasuhiko, Mecha designer Kunio Okawara, and Art Director Mitsuki Nakamura as well as past PVs and CMs.[2]

Due to Bandai Entertainment going defunct, Mobile Suit Gundam saw no hope of a Blu-Ray release in North America until July 3, 2015 at Anime Expo 2015, where the Right-Stuf and Sunrise announced that they would release the original Mobile Suit Gundam television anime series on DVD and Blu-ray Disc, and the release will mark the first time the series is getting a Blu-ray Disc release in North America. The first 21 episodes will ship in fall 2015 with English and Japanese audio, English subtitles, and on-screen translations.[3] On September 30, 2015, Gundam Global Portal posted a picture showing the Blu-Ray case of collection 01.[4]

Mobile Suit Gundam was never broadcasted and never had a home DVD release in the UK or Ireland and it was thought that a release on Blu-Ray was unlikely there since Bandai Entertainment's European subsidiary Beez also went defunct. Fortunately, on the 25th of July, 2015, Anime Limited announced at their pannel at MCM Manchester Comic Con that they would release Mobile Suit Gundam on Blu-Ray in the United Kingdom and Ireland, marking the first time the the original series will be released in there. The first part, tentatively titled "Mobile Suit Gundam: Part 1" is due to be released in October, followed by a second part soon after. The release will include Japanese audio with English subtitles as well as the English dub.[5][6] Pre-ordering became available on on the 3rd of August 2015.[7] On the 4th of August, 2015 Anime Limited announced that Mobile Suit Gundam Part 1 of 2 will come on Blu-ray in November, with a UK Exclusive Limited Edition box (illustrated by Yoshikazu Yasuhiko) to store the whole series. The front depicts the Earth Federation characters and the back depicts the Zeon characters. There is a card box to fill in the space of the Amaray case for the second volume. It will be limited to 1000 units.[8] The units will be released on the 30th of November, however 100 of the units were also available for purchase beforehand at Anime Limited's stand at MCM London Comic Con 2015.[9]



See also

Variation models: Mobile Suit Variations, Mobile Suit X


  • Tomino's original concept for the series was much darker, with Amuro dying halfway through the series, and the crew of the White Base having to ally with Char (who's given a red Gundam, no less), but finally having to battle him after he takes control of the Principality of Zeon. The original concept found expression in a series of novels written by Tomino soon after the show's conclusion, and elements of the story weaved themselves into Z Gundam and Gundam: Char's Counterattack.
  • Originally, the design for the Gundam by Tomino and Kunio Okawara had the Gundam colored a uniform low-visibility gray. The show's sponsors, looking for a marketable toy line, prevailed upon the two to give the Gundam its arresting (if illogical) white, red, blue and gold scheme. A later retcon explained the colours by making them a demonstration/test scheme that was never repainted. In the novels, Amuro's first Gundam was completely white with some red, supposedly reminiscent of an X-Wing colour scheme, and instead of the Gundam being upgraded with magnetic coated joints, Amuro was simply given a new one - the G3, which had a uniform low-visibility gray color-scheme.
  • The final episodes (encompassing the battles of Solomon and A Baoa Qu) were originally planned to be more elaborate, with exotic Zeon mecha defending the fortresses. Budget cuts scrapped the episodes (and the designs) although at least two (the Dom-like Dowdage and Gelgoog-Like Galbaldy) do become resurrected for Z Gundam and Gundam ZZ.
  • This is the only non-OVA Gundam series to only have one opening theme.
  • This original series of Gundam universe won the Animage's Anime Grand Prix Award twice, which is in 1979 and 1980, the first and second year the award was held.
  • Interestingly, the cover for the first volume in the Right-Stuf! Blu-Ray release of Mobile Suit Gundam depicts the RX-78-2 Gundam fighting Char's Gelgoog and Lalah's Elmeth, an event which does happen until the second part of the series.


External links


Preceded by:
Mobile Suit Gundam MS IGLOO
Chronological order
0079 U.C.0080 U.C.
Succeeded by:
Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team

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