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Episode 12: The Threat of Zeon

 

Review by Chris Guanche

August 7, 2001

 

Summary

 

At Zum City, Degwin listens to the last recording sent to him by Garma, and Kycilia tells him that he has a royal obligation to honor Garma at the funeral. She escorts him to the funeral service outside the palace. On Earth, a Zeon fleet led by Ramba Ral's Zanzibar is finishing re-entry procedures. For many people like his lover Crowley Hamon, it's their first time on Earth. On the White Base, Amuro inattentively fixes a Gundam computer part when Fraw brings him his dinner. After she leaves, he eats his food. On the bridge, Bright is under pressure and yells at the kids when they come in to vacuum the floor. He apologizes and leaves to take a break. Ramba's ship spots the White Base, and they decide to attack it to avenge Garma and gain Dozle's favor. Back at Zum City, Kycilia asks what happened to Char and is told he was dismissed and went home. Mirai comes to tell Bright to relax, but their conversation is interrupted by Ramba's attack. Bright returns to the bridge and orders Mirai to steer the ship directly into a thunderstorm to escape. Everyone on Ramba's ship thinks lightning is a Federation weapon, but he explains it's a natural phenomenon. Amuro stares at the lightning and remembers his encounter with Icelina. Bright orders Mirai to land the ship on a small island, and he orders Amuro, Ryu, Kai and Hayato to all go out into battle. The Zanzibar searches for the White Base, and Hamon urges Ramba to give up since their fleet is mostly comprised of Komusai shuttles. Ramba refuses and presses the search. Ryu finds Amuro spaced out and gives him a good slap to get him moving. He helps Amuro get into his pilot's suit, and Amuro complains that the helmet is suffocating him.

 

Several Komusais spot the White Base, and the Zanzibar changes course to intercept. The White Base fires blindly at the attacking Komusais and the Zanzibar. Bright asks Ryu why they haven't launched, and Ryu explains that Amuro has battle fatigue. Bright tells him to just stick Amuro in the Gundam and throw him into battle. Sayla encourages Amuro to fight well and launches the Gundam with the catapult. Ramba dresses for battle and launches in the new Gouf mobile suit, accompanied by Acous and Cozun in Zakus. The Gundam crashes into rocks due to Amuro's distraction. He returns to his senses and manages to get up and see the Gouf. He decides to attack it, and to his surprise it's much more powerful than a Zaku. The Komusais run out of fuel and stop attacking, and the White Base fires at Ramba and his men. Amuro finds they are still intact, and one of the Zaku pilots throws a cracker bomb at Amuro. Ramba uses the Gouf's heat rod to shock the Gundam and destroy Amuro's bazooka. He is amazed at the Gundam's firepower, and he wonders if it can handle it. Ramba tells him that the Gouf is no Zaku and knocks him away easily. The Guncannon and Guntank open fire, and Ramba and his men retreat by using blinding flashers to cover up their escape. Amuro wonders if they ran away or decided to spare them. When Amuro and the others return to the ship, they see Gihren giving a speech about the tyranny of the Federation. Gihren says the cause of Zeon is just and that they are winning the war despite the superior resources of the Federation. He tells the people to use Garma's sacrifice as a focus for their hatred of the Federation. Char watches the speech in a bar and is approached by Kycilia's Royal Guards, who give him an offer to join her forces. Bright calls the speech useless propaganda and says Gihren is trying to create a royal dictatorship. Gihren ends his speech with the rallying cry of "Sieg Zeon!" which the crowd chants many times.

 

Commentary

 

Here is an episode that was included in its entirety in the movie. However, it is bumped ahead of episode 13 so that it forms the end of the movie. We see the first appearance of veteran Ramba Ral and his famous Gouf, which is much more powerful than a Zaku. For the moment, it's enough to defeat Amuro. It's good to see that Amuro isn't invincible and that his body can break down and cause him problems in battle. We also get to see Gihren's famous speech about Garma, which is also recreated in the first episode of The 08th MS Team. In another development, it looks like Char was kicked out of the Zeon forces for failing to protect Garma. Seeing him in a bar with sunglasses reminds me of his Quattro Bajeena disguise from seven years down the line in Zeta Gundam. I don't know why he'd need a disguise in a bar because no one's really seen his face anyway. Even with the disguise, Kycilia's men found him easily enough. Though Char is temporarily out of the picture, Ramba is on the scene, and he's quite the formidable match for Amuro as well.

 

Overall Rating

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4 out of 5 stars
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Buy the collection (eps 1-14, 16-22) on Blu-ray or DVD from Amazon
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