Before anyone start asking me wtf am I smokin’, please read/skim this whole post first. It’s about time I let off my thoughts on this particular Gundam series ever since it finished airing back in 2005 (oh wow…it’s already been four years?!)
Spoilers ahead (but I’ll try to keep it to a minimum in case there are those who are fortunate enough to have not seen it yet)
I refuse to rewatch any episodes ever since the anime ended because I just hate it that much. Going off from my memory, I remember how the series actually started pretty well. It was moderately paced and plenty of fun action and drama. Shinn was clearly the main angsty protagonist and was going the way of being a likeable character… all of that kinda start turning into shit some way after “break the world” (episode 14). WTF happened? It’s like they spent all their effort on the first few episodes and got exhausted already. After that episode, I start noticing stuff slowing down, more stock footages, and a lot more goddamn flashbacks and clip shows. The 20-30’s were when things really started to be convoluted, the plot seemed lost, character focus was blurred (so is Kira or Shinn the main?) and ideas were pulled out of Sunrise’s ass on the fly. Episode 34 was the “sweet” spot… after 34, the anime turned into complete garbage. 80-90% of the battles became the same damn stock footage, old ideas being used (Mwu pulling the same heroic deed back in SEED…only this time he is completely unharmed), characters becoming deluded and very very poor pacing (“Meer” episode). Shinn got degraded, lost his mind and somehow he is now the antagonist, Athrun’s angsting did nothing to improve his character, and Kira completely stole the spotlight. WTF?! The final battle was the most anti-climatic fight I’ve ever seen from a Gundam series… WTF?! FLAWLESS VICTORY?! Not gonna complain anymore…it’s just more of what you probably heard way too much already.
“But You Just Said It was Great!”
Yes, Gundam SEED Destiny is indeed a great anime in my humble opinion. And I don’t mean it in a good way. Not even remotely. The series is great in how much of a reaction it caused from the Gundam community. This is the first Gundam series I’ve ever seen so much rage against from forums and the likes. The series left a disgusting aftertaste inside people even till today. Any mention/topic of “SEED Destiny” or “episode 34” will ignite an endless flame war.
Before the SEED era started, people debating about a Gundam series generally try to use characters’ traits to identify the actions they take or how the plot changed based on stuff the characters did. Arguments were done within the realm of the anime itself. People try to interpret the characters for why they did what they did. After SEED/SEED Destiny, this taken from my observation, SEED Destiny was probably the cause of the majority of people to start blaming the writers directly for stupid actions characters make in anime in general. Saying stuff like “because the plot calls for it”, “poor script, that’s why… LOLOL”, “they need to sell more models”, “the writer thought it was funny to (insert whatever here)”, “Their budget was low” or “the writer got lazy and just decided to kill her off” and other “blame the writers” line became like the answer to all questions about an anime’s plot, twist, character development, train wreck (see: Code Geass). It was funny to read such ways of thinking at first but then EVERYONE start doing it for just about every anime that comes afterwards and start thinking that way for past animes as well…and that’s when it gets old and become annoying. There are far less analytical and intellectual in-anime conversations now as people just resort to “LOL teh writerz did et”. Gundam SEED has changed the way how people discuss and view anime. While there were some “blame the writers” before SEED, this anime just made it into a norm (“cuz iz popular”).
There you have it, SEED/Destiny is great because of how terrible it was. It left a deep scar in the heart of most Gunotas and changed the way how some began viewing anime in general due to the horrible writing (increased level of skepticism and satire of anime). For those lucky enough to have not seen it yet, do take the risk and see for yourself what I’m talking about in this post. I’m not persuading nor discouraging; I’m just presenting a part of my view on this Gundam series and how it effected otakus in general.
Am I wrong? I somewhat hope so in this case… but I don’t think my thoughts are too far off…
If some sentences above didn’t make any sesnse, it’s because it is 2 am right now… *yawns*