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Episode 1: Is the Moon Out?

 

Review by Chris Guanche

Original Review: June 24, 2000
New Review: October 2, 2004

 

Summary

 

In space, the 7th Space War rages between the United Nations Earth Forces and the Space Revolutionary Army. After eight months of stalemate, the SRA attempts to end the war by threatening to drop space colonies onto Earth. The UNE responds in force with its Gundam type mobile suits, including the Gundam X, Gundam Airmaster and Gundam Leopard. In the final battle of the war, the Gundam X and its GX-Bits use their satellite cannons to destroy a space colony. In response, the SRA initiates a massive colony drop and kills 9 billion people on the Earth's surface. In the meantime, the Gundam X is damaged in a battle with the massive mobile armor Febral. In A.W. (After War) 0015, people continue to live in the post-apocalyptic wasteland. In a small North American town, two con men masquerading as UNE soldiers ask a crowd for work. Suddenly, a custom Jenice mobile suit piloted by a bandit named Crockas attacks. The citizens futilely attack Crockas with anti-air artillery, and he easily dispatches them. A 15-year-old boy named Garrod Ran tosses a flashbang bottle at the Jenice's main camera and blinds Crockas. He then uses a wire gun to propel himself up to the cockpit and open it. Crockas is impressed and asks Garrod to join him, but Garrod tosses Crockas out of the cockpit to an angry crowd waiting on the ground. An old man named Rike Anto approaches Garrod and says he wishes to discuss a job. The two sit down for a drink, and Rike tells Garrod that it's a waste to sell an undamaged mobile suit. Garrod counters that mobile suits are worth a lot of money, and he doesn't want to risk his life as a mobile suit pilot. Rike shows Garrod a picture of a girl named Tiffa Adill and asks him to rescue her from some Vultures. In the After War era, Vultures scavenge the land looking for old UNE technology to sell and trade. In the wasteland, the Vulture ship Freeden travels across the desert. Captain Jamil Neate leaves navigator Shingo Mori in charge as he leaves the bridge. Toniya Malme and Sala Tyrrell wonder why so much effort was spent capturing one girl. Tiffa dreams of the Gundam X reaching out to her, and she wakes up and looks at the Moon.

 

The Freeden stops near a lake on the way to Saint Range, and Sala supervises the pumping of fresh water. Garrod takes this opportunity to sneak aboard the ship. While exploring the corridors, he nearly runs into Toniya as she runs out of the shower to complain about a lack of water. Later, Garrod breaks into Jamil's quarters in the hopes of finding something valuable. He cracks open a safe and is disappointed to find a G-controller. He continues to explore the ship and finally finds Tiffa's room. He tells her that he's come to rescue her, and she answers that she's been waiting for him. As the Freeden takes off, Garrod and Tiffa escape in a small buggy. Just then, several Daughtress type mobile suits attack the Freeden. Garrod drives Tiffa to a nearby location where Rike is waiting to take her away. Garrod notices that Tiffa is frightened of Rike, so he drives off with her. Rike uses a radio to call for mobile suit reinforcements. As Garrod drives through the desert, Rike and two other men attack him with Daughtress suits. Tiffa senses incoming attacks and grabs the wheel to steer Garrod to safety. He wonders if Rike is after her because of her power. He asks Tiffa where it's safe, and she leads him to a nearby UNE base. Rike and the others chase Garrod into the base and damage the buggy. After the buggy crashes, Garrod finds himself next to a perfectly preserved Gundam X unit. He grabs Tiffa and jumps into the cockpit as Rike attacks. The Gundam X won't move, so Garrod uses the G-controller to activate it. Garrod then attacks one of the Daughtresses and destroys it. Rike and the other pilot run away, but Garrod chases after them. They ambush him outside and think they've destroyed him, but he attacks again. Garrod pulls out his beam sword and destroys the Daughtress and Rike's Daughtress Command. He tells Tiffa everything will be ok, but he stops when he sees Witz Sou's Gundam Airmaster and Roybea Loy's Gundam Leopard pull in nearby, followed by the Freeden. Witz thinks a battle against a Gundam will be interesting, and Jamil asks his crew if the Moon is out.

 

Commentary

 

Unfortunately, Gundam X has acquired a bad reputation over the years due to its cancellation. Many presume that bad ratings and cancellation are the result of a poor series, but this is completely untrue in this case. As the third alternate universe series, Gundam X is a "what if" variation of the One Year War from the original series. Instead of one colony, we get several dozen, leading to the deaths of billions. This gives us a new setting for Gundam, a post-apocalyptic wasteland that is certainly not an ideal place to live. Happy-go-lucky Garrod Ran is the hero here, and like many other Gundam pilots before and after him, he accidentally stumbles upon a Gundam. This series is also the only non-UC show to explore Newtypes, as evidenced with young Tiffa Adill. What exactly is her power, and why do people want it? These are questions for subsequent episodes to answer.

 

Overall Rating

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3.5 out of 5 stars
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Gundam X Episode 1 Gundam X Episode 1

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Buy the collection (eps 1-19) on DVD from Amazon
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