What is this? A sequel review to Gundam Iron Blooded Orphans.
So we’ve finally reached the end of the ride, and what a ride it has been.
What IBO has is full of tear jerking moments, a few twists and turns which depending on your experience you may be able to predict, and lots and lots of deaths. Which I don’t want to go into details as I don’t to spoil too much.
Who will like this? If you are a fan of the first season, fan of a great space opera or Gundam series in general
What makes Season 2 good? The child soldier setup in Iron-Blooded Orphans works so well. They’re already trained and brutally exploited, so not only do you sympathise with them but also their general combat prowess is very linkable to the current real world conflicts.
The stories started when Tekkadan has been recognised as a legitimate organisation, not just an ordinary group, this season they deepen the main theme of this series, FAMILY. Orga, as their leader is trying to find a place and future where they can live happily ever after. But, the conflicts that revolve around them can’t let it happen in subtle ways. Of course, the blood and the brutality of this series are increased. Mika character development (although he’s kuudere), his wish to run a farm when the battles end humanises him as something more than a killing weapon; the love triangle around him, between Amelia and Kudelia.
What is the hook? The finale of this season, strengthen the statement that war is always the most painful no matter which side you are on. This strengthen the roots of the stories of all Gundam series, that war is too painful for both sides and it can’t resolve everything wrong with society. In the end, our “antagonist” Rustal Ellion, created the world that Tekkadan and McGillis want to made both are not alive to see this new world. Gjallarhorn evolved and became more democratic, the world is blessed with peace and equality, and Mars has achieved its true independent. Is all the deaths worth it? I think so, and Rustal Ellion, is more complex than we gave him credit for because he made all this possible, so don’t judge someone just because he has the different perspective and ways to achieve the goal that we want to attain too.
What can make it difficult to watch? Well, aside from all the deaths that made me cry like a wreck you ask? The new season feels especially slow when it focuses on the internal working and administrative matters of the new Tekkadan as it strives to make a proper name for itself. Watching this rebel group trying to mature into an actual organisation that has the respect and business it needs while it tries to become a successful and self-sufficient organisation is awe inspiring because these children who were called “human debris” are trying their best to live. Next, the series has moved past its less narrative-friendly elements, and onto grander plot lines, finally answering questions about the great Calamity war and the role the Gundams played in it centuries ago. These give the series an epic quality not seen since its Season 1 conclusion.
The technical stuff. The art far away better than the 1st season. The pacing is solid, plot and the’ depiction of the world and its people is very real. The art gave us great fight scenes that don’t focus entirely on the mechs, but the ships and transport vehicles as well. The details of the mobile suits and its character are much better than the 1st season. As usual, the Openings, endings and on OST are very good. There is a sense of danger and struggles in the OSTs
My favourite scene. That final bit where Akihiro gets Iok in his giant binders and crushes him, make me sing halleluiah. I had never hated a person so much in my life. Iok was the cause of so much pain for me.
My less favourite scene. Julieta, who is the second worst character, has vowed to remain human while being as ruthless as Rustal needs her to be, beheads the bestial Barbatos Lupus Rex and raises it in triumph before her elated comrades. It is over. Mika, Akihiro are dead, and so is Tekkadan. But life goes on, and those who survived thanks to their fallen brothers continue to follow Orga’s final order to keep moving forward.
I want to watch more gundam series and review them on this blog when I find the time. This series has become my favourite Gundam, but then I have only seen Seed, Seed Destiny, and Wing before this.