「白い狼」 (Shiroi Ookami)
“The White Wolf”
For a “supposed” kid show, there sure is a lot of man-service in Gundam AGE. I must’ve missed the memo on how the latest Gundam is only for children. Oh wait, no I didn’t. Joking aside, I really don’t intend to bring up that debate again. I do however intend to look at Gundam AGE for what it is beyond the surface — both in a positive and negative light — such as how this week’s formal introduction to Woolf Enneacle (Ono Daisuke) had some irksome developments that didn’t sit so well with me.
As suggested by the preview last time, Woolf is at odds with Flit over the Gundam and rightfully so because the arrogant “White Wolf” ace pilot/womanizer pretty much does whatever the hell he wants. It didn’t bother me so much that Flit didn’t want to hand it over to him even when he’s not a soldier himself — mainly because he didn’t have any problems entrusting it to Largan in the first episode — but it did bug me when he got ahead of himself when the UE showed up. Yes, he’s the first person to ever destroy one of the UE Gafran mobile suits, but he’s also still a kid in the presence of an actual soldier, regardless of how much of a jerk Woolf may be. Seeing as the Gundam is the only thing that’s proven effective against the UE, I didn’t find anything wrong with Flit’s thinking though. I’m just finding it a little hard to accept how everything’s gone relatively smoothly for him when he too does whatever the hell he wants.
From a plot standpoint, it’s easy to chalk that up to establishing that Flit is destined to be the pilot of the Gundam, but I kind of want to see him falter a bit so that he gets a wake-up call. The perfect opportunity was during his skirmish with Woolf, where I was hoping to see him get absolutely creamed. Instead, he just concentrated after getting scolded by Vargas and was able to land some shots on an ace pilot, winning over the support of the crew even more. It’s a little too fairy tale-like to see him succeed simply by putting his mind to it. To help offset that, it wouldn’t hurt to see more people opposed to the idea of keeping children on board a warship and letting them take part in military operations. Thus far, the only one against letting Flit continue to pilot the Gundam is Emily and she shouldn’t even be there to begin with when the Diva could’ve easily dropped her and Dique off at the same time as Yurin. In short, I’d expect (and want to see) something similar to the talk that Daguza had with Banagher in Gundam Unicorn, even if Flit is willing to pilot the Gundam on his own accord.
As for some other observations, I don’t find that it lessens the value of the Gundam in any way when the weapons developed by the AGE Builder can be used by other mobile suits (in this case, Woolf’s Genoace Custom). After all, the “true power” of the Gundam has always been the learning ability of its AGE System, with the extra benefits being its thicker armor and (probably) faster mobility so that it doesn’t get destroyed so easily. As far as I’m aware, the goal of the AGE System has always been to further the Earth Federation’s technology so that it can fight on even terms with the UE — not to have the Gundam do it all itself. Incidentally, that intended use does seem to support the idea going around that the UE have come from the future to pressure mankind into advancing its technology in preparation for an actual threat that will show up almost a century from now. I threw out the idea of something similar in last episode, but I didn’t really expect that things may actually be headed that way. The UE’s cloaking field is
unprecedented a rarity in the Gundam franchise, so it definitely seems probable.
* Given Woolf’s whimsical personality, Flit should probably just have the Gundam painted black. I bet he wouldn’t want it then.
* Poor Emily is lowering her chances of becoming Flit’s future wife when it falls on her to try and get him to stop piloting the Gundam.
* Full-length images: 01, 12, 34.