「みえない地雷」 (Mienai Jirai)
While melodrama (and lots of it; damn Guel you’re a tsundere and a half) may be the spice flavouring this latest Gundam concoction, the usual base of political tensions and cultural divisiveness remains ever present and now properly back in the spotlight. It took a few weeks of teasing, but we’re returning home to the tried and true, with the only thing left to discern being what sets off the ticking time bomb.
With how much Witch from Mercury has alluded to Earth-Space tensions, it was about time we got an episode delving into it. Or, you know, smashing a fist into it. Unless you’re brand new to Gundam this arrangement is fairly standard – i.e. Terra hates space, space hates Terra, and someone inevitably decides to use the situation to their own advantage. The difference this time is space is the one in charge, with spaceside megacorps exploiting Earth for their own ends while Earth’s children experience the best of Victorian era economic conditions. It’s basically Gundam SEED if it was trying to be IBO/UC, with Mars replaced by Earth and sovereign states usurped by legitimate corporations.
The unknown right now is what will inevitably set both sides at each other’s throat, but we already have some foreshadowing on that front as well. Chuchu and her situation is evidence enough, as working-class background and major expectations (guaranteed she doesn’t want to disappoint those letting her go to school) answer for a short fuse personality and understandable hatred of Spacers. Teasing after all can go too far, simple feelings of superiority can easily give way to retaliation and retribution. This episode was only the harbinger of what’s to come because you don’t bring up personal circumstances for a character like Chuchu if there wasn’t intention on taking advantage of it later on. It may unclear just what will result, but rest assured whatever it is won’t be pretty.
And all of that then leads us back to Suletta and her role in current affairs. Much like Chuchu teases upcoming disaster, Suletta hints towards unification, the one character who can bridge both sides and maybe bring about peace once the fireworks commence. Admittedly this won’t all be her – Miorine has already established herself as Suletta’s guiding hand and firm, loyal support – but those honest dreams of helping her (new) homeworld and innocent ability to slot into both Earth and Space factions does enough to show how a lot of what’s to come will rest on what she decides to do.
We still have some time before this rollercoaster reaches the summit, but expect things to get crazy in a rush when it finally does. Between corporate infighting, illegal technology in the hands of an incredibly introverted (yet no less cute) girl and her mysterious mother, and Earth-space animosity, when the fireworks kick off the show is going to be incredible.