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Volume 6

 

Review by Chris Guanche

May 6, 2020

 

Summary

 

The Quavarze grapples onto the Crossbone X3 from behind, and Giri tells Tobia that his attack was half-hearted because Tobia was more concerned about Barnes’ condition than the combat situation. At the same time, a cloaked mobile suit rushes through the forest. Giri states that he can’t go back to Dogatie and explain how his carelessness cost him both his teammates. Tobia tries to break free from the Quavarze’s tail, but is unable to. A voice tells Tobia to lower his top thrusters, and Tobia does so, which hits the Quavarze. The impact allows Tobia to break free, and the cloaked mobile suit attacks Giri. Its anti-beam mantle then falls off, revealing Kincade’s Crossbone X1 Kai. Giri fires his cannon, but Kincade dodges and attacks from above with his screw whips, which disable the Quavarze. Tobia dismounts and asks who the pilot is, so Kincade opens his cockpit. Tobia grabs onto Kincade, but he winces in pain from his injuries. Tobia starts bombarding Kincade with questions about how he survived, and Kincade answers that he’ll explain everything in order. Giri emerges from his cockpit with a gun drawn, and Tobia tells him that the battle is over. Giri repeats that he can’t go back because he was a Newtype chosen by Dogatie as well as Karas’ top student, and if he can’t meet their expectations, he’s no different from filth like Tobia. Giri says he can’t report such a failure and points the gun at his own head. However, before he can pull the trigger, Barnes grabs the gun out of his hand from behind. Several Earth Federation helicopters arrive to fight the fire, and Tobia tells Kincade that they’d better leave. They return to the cabin, where Berah rushes to embrace Kincade. She’s shocked at the sight of his new robotic right hand, but he tells her that he’ll be ok. The lumberjack lets everyone, including the Death Gale Team, stay in a friend’s unoccupied cabin. Barnes laments knowing that their battle had no meaning and that the Jovians won’t be claiming Earth for themselves. He thinks they were saved by the Earth in the end and finds that strange. A news report states that less than 24 hours remain until Dogatie’s nuclear strike and that all EFF military bases on Earth have been taken out by Jovian forces. As a result, no EFF backup will be able to launch from Earth. Barnes tells Tobia that the Jupitris 9 has a weak spot between its eighth and ninth blocks, and he adds that he doesn’t think they have any trump cards to use in this situation. Kincade counters that they do and tells Tobia that they’re heading to the EFF’s 117th Base to join up with all the other survivors of the Crossbone Vanguard. He states that the Crossbone X3 is their trump card, and he intends to show everyone a miracle. Tobia, Kincade, Berah and Bernadette take off in a transport plane.

 

In space, the EFF fires volleys of missiles at the Jupitris 9, but they’re all shot down. Dogatie tells Karas that he seems unconcerned about Giri not returning, and Karas explains that if Giri was defeated, it means he wasn’t good enough. Dogatie assigns the Newtype squad to report to Karas. He also tells Zabine he has a role to play and asks what his purpose is. Zabine states that he wants to create an aristocratic society, and Dogatie responds that he intends to eradicate Earth. Zabine then kisses up to Dogatie, but Dogatie laughs and says he couldn’t care less about a world without Earth. He adds that he doesn’t mind handing Earth over to Zabine or Karas - whichever survives the final battle. On the Eos Nyx, Sherindon realizes that Dogatie is a threat because he intends to wipe out Earth, and if no one can stop him, they’ll have to rely on the Crossbone Vanguard. On Earth, the transport plane arrives at the 117th Base just as the Crossbone Vanguard’s new mass produced Flints attack. Umon is impressed with the power of the Flint and wishes SNRI would’ve handed them over sooner. Kincade tells Tobia that the 117th Base doesn’t have any space shuttles to transport mobile suits, but they do still have solid fuel rockets that predate the Universal Century. Tobia and Kincade launch, and Kincade explains that after the battle in space, he was pulled into Earth’s atmosphere and survived by using his beam shield. After crashing on Earth, SNRI picked up the signal from his Core Fighter and rescued him. He states that he narrowly avoided death, and surgeons gave him a robotic replacement for his right forearm. After the EFF soldiers surrender, Umon, Yona and Jared all greet Tobia. Kincade explains that his plan is to attach their mobile suits to the top of the rockets and have them use their beam shields as protection during atmospheric escape. Bernadette finds Tobia outside at night, and he explains that he’s writing a message to Sherindon, who is using her resources to find Newtypes on Earth. Kincade delivered a message from her asking Tobia to come to her after the conflict to learn how to awaken his Newtype abilities. Bernadette asks Tobia if he’s going to go to Sherindon, and he answers that he won’t because he isn’t a Newtype. Tobia comments that Bernadette doesn’t look well, and she tells him that she thinks Dogatie is already dead. She thinks the one giving orders is just a copy, because she doesn’t think her real father could be so cruel. She asks Tobia to stop Dogatie so that his hatred doesn’t cause more cruelty, and he promises that he will. Berah asks Kincade if he’s bringing Tobia with him, and he answers that Tobia wouldn’t listen if he said no. Berah cries and hugs Kincade, and addressing him as Seabook, asks him not to go. She says she doesn’t want to lose him, and he responds that right now he’s still Kincade and has to go back and finish this war so that Cecily can come back. After they kiss, Kincade prepares for launch. Tobia tells Berah not to worry because he’ll protect Kincade. With both Crossbone Gundams and the Flints strapped to the top of the rockets, the launch sequence begins. Sherindon receives Tobia’s letter, which opens by asking if she can walk 12 kilometers on a mountain road in a single day. He states that mankind has always adapted to its environment, but it has nothing to do with evolution. He thinks Newtype powers are an adaptation to living in space, but humanity is still the same as it always was. He thinks people becoming Newtypes will be a long road, but before that happens, there are things he can do. As the EFF loses ground in space, Harrison realizes that Dogatie’s 48-hour warning was just a ploy to weaken Earth’s defenses. The Jupitris 9 picks up multiple rockets on approach directly beneath them, an area they didn’t anticipate an attack coming from.

 

A Jovian commander is informed that they haven’t deployed any mobile suits to defend the ship’s underside, so he reassigns units from the front. The Crossbone Vanguard charges toward the Jupitris 9, and several attacking Batallas are destroyed by Harrison’s mobile suit team, which offers its full support. Tobia and Kincade use a nuclear round to attack the weak spot that Barnes outlined, which sets off a large explosion that breaks the Jupitris 9 in half. Dogatie calls his people fools who he can’t rely on and decides to join the fight. Tobia is happy about their victory, but Kincade tells him it isn’t over. He says that Dogatie is still alive and that he can feel his hatred. Kincade wonders why it is that Dogatie has to destroy Earth. Harrison’s Heavyguns are then sliced apart by a wire attack from Karas’ mobile armor Nautilus. Karas congratulates Tobia on having gotten so far, and Tobia responds that he doesn’t want to fight Karas, only stop Dogatie from destroying Earth. Karas counters that only the strong can turn their will into reality, so if the strong declare that Earth isn’t necessary, that’s the truth. But if Tobia wants to make his desires reality, he has to beat Karas and the Newtype squad. Dogatie’s bio units then launch in seven massive mobile armors called Divinidad. The Divinidads begin destroying EFF ships as they set course for Earth, and Kincade concludes that each mobile armor is probably capable of destroying the planet. Kincade chases after the Divinidads, but he comes under attack from Zabine’s Crossbone X2 Kai. Zabine says that he thought he’d already dealt with Kincade and that dead men should stay dead. Tobia attempts to dodge attacks from Karas’ Nautilus and the Newtype squad’s Mass Production Quavarze. Karas tells Tobia that in evolution the stronger always survive, so the Jovians have become different beings from Earthnoids. Tobia slices a Quavarze in half and yells that the Jovians are killing people for senseless reasons. Tobia dodges Karas’ attack and gets close enough to the Nautilus to cut into it with his Muramasa blaster. Explosions rock the Nautilus, and Karas congratulates Tobia on having done well. A Quavarze targets Tobia from behind, but Karas destroys it and says that a loser won’t stand in the way of a victor like Tobia. The Nautilus then completely explodes, killing Karas. The Divinidads inflict heavy damage on the EFF mobile suit force, and Harrison wonders if this is their limit. At that moment, reinforcement mobile suits from the colonies join the battle, led by the Eos Nyx. Tobia thinks that the count of seven Divinidads feels wrong and remembers Kincade’s words about Dogatie’s hatred. He realizes that machines don’t emit hatred, which means that the real Dogatie must still be alive. He then spots a large sphere detaching from the Jupitris 9 and entering Earth’s atmosphere. While Tobia gives chase, Kincade continues to battle Zabine. Kincade uses his dagger to stab the Crossbone X2 Kai’s cockpit and mortally wound Zabine. Zabine states that Dogatie was supposed to give Earth to him so that he can build an aristocratic world where the nobles rule. Kincade points out that Berah, the woman the aristocracy chose as their ruler, rejected that system, which means their ideals were wrong from the start. The Crossbone X2 Kai then explodes, and Kincade sees Tobia chasing Dogatie into the atmosphere. The sphere breaks apart, revealing Dogatie’s Divinidad. Bernadette sees a light from the ground and wonders if it’s someone returning to Earth.

 

Dogatie laughs and tells Tobia to get out of his way, and Tobia accuses him of not being human anymore. Tobia wonders how he can fight Dogatie since the Divinidad is likely full of nuclear fusion reactors that could irradiate Earth. Kincade deploys his beam shield to reenter the atmosphere and chase after Dogatie. The Divinidad and Crossbone X3 crash into the ocean, and Tobia uses his Muramasa blaster to start dismembering the Divinidad. In space, the allied forces succeed at destroying the seven Divinidads piloted by Dogatie bio units. Tobia asks Dogatie why he wants to destroy Earth so badly, and Dogatie boasts that he made the Jupiter Sphere what it is. He says that over the course of 70 years, he took a world that had nothing and where no one could live and made it suitable for humans, but the Earth Federation never helped them. The Jovians banded together into a nation, and the Earth Federation requested a political marriage, giving him a young woman from an Earth family. Dogatie was told this made them equal, but he saw it as a disgrace. Tobia notes that Bernadette is his daughter, and Dogatie said that his wife’s kindness made him miserable because it could only result from someone who grew up rich. He equated it with a rejection of the world he created, and now he wants to wipe out everything that rejected him by making Earth barren like Jupiter. Tobia asks what happens after that, and Dogatie answers that he only wants to see Earth burn. The damaged Divinidad emerges from the water and fires multiple nuclear missiles, but Tobia uses the Muramasa blaster to slice off the warheads. Tobia tells Dogatie that he is still human after all - not an invader from another planet, but just a man with a twisted heart. Dogatie fires a mega particle cannon, which destroys the Muramasa blaster. Tobia charges toward Dogatie and emits I-fields from both hands at full power. He then ejects the Core Fighter just before the mega particle cannon shot and I-fields collide and create a massive explosion. Kincade rescues Tobia’s Core Fighter, but the damaged Divinidad emerges from the water again. Kincade attacks the cockpit with his screw whip, killing Dogatie and finally ending the threat. Tobia thinks to himself that despite the destructive conflict, he believes that good came from it and that people have much to accomplish before they evolve into something more. After landing, Berah removes Kincade’s medical mask, revealing a long scar around his right eye. Kincade gives Tobia the Crossbone X1 Kai and asks what he’s going to do now, but Tobia answers that he’s not sure. Since he’s officially dead, he might stay as a space pirate and see to it that people can live together in space. Tobia asks Kincade what he’s going to do, and Kincade answers that he’s going to walk a mountain trail, breathe in the fresh air, embrace the woman he loves and think about things now that he has time to be the man he once was. Berah then addresses him as Seabook, and he calls her Cecily.

 

Commentary

 

The original Crossbone Gundam ends with a fierce battle to save Earth from destruction at the hands of the Jupiter Empire. This last leg of the story was not unlike a Gundam TV series, with unlikely alliances forming to unite against a deadly threat. As expected, Kincade was indeed safe, but the price of that safety was a scar and a lost hand. The Death Gale Team is finally defeated, and Barnes finally stands up to the Empire and provides information that proves invaluable to the effort to stop Dogatie. In contrast to other Gundam heroes, Tobia rejects the label of a Newtype and acts merely his his self-determination and ingenuity. This is echoed a few years later in Gundam X's Garrod Ran, who fights against the idea that only Newtypes can do certain things. Karas the space cockroach finally dies, and he definitely died as he lived with his strange code about the survival of the fittest. Having acknowledged that Tobia was the victor, he shot down one of his own people to prevent that victory from being spoiled. The "real" Dogatie finally appears, and we learn that his extreme hatred of Earth was born out of decades of bitterness over the Earth Federation withholding support for the development of Jupiter. That bitterness is understandable, but Dogatie's plan to destroy Earth for revenge is utterly insane. Dogatie inspired fanatical, cult-like devotion from the Jovians, which must've been cultivated over several decades by stoking their shared sense of bitterness and hatred. It is unfortunately all too believable that so many people would follow a madman like Dogatie. Seabook and Cecily got a happy ending, and though this doesn't make up for so much of their story being untold, it is better than nothing. Zabine, however, was a disappointment. He ended up as nothing more than a sniveling brown-noser serving anyone he thinks could lead to the return of the aristocracy. He's so far from what we saw earlier that he could've been a different character entirely and it wouldn't have impacted the story. This isn't the end for Tobia, who has further adventures in various sequels, but these stories are written solely by Hasegawa and have no involvement by Tomino. In the end, the original Crossbone Gundam series is an enjoyable read for what it is - a completely typical Gundam story that doesn't do anything new aside from having some space pirate aesthetics. That aesthetic has its appeal, but Space Pirate Captain Harlock this is not.

 

Overall Rating

Full StarFull StarFull StarHalf StarNo Star

3.5 out of 5 stars
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