You might not realize it but Tuesday this week (April 7th) was a very special day for fans of Gundam or mecha in general. It was on that day in 1979 that the very first Gundam series premiered on Japanese television! Now, I openly admit that I’m not a Gundam fan but I do know that this is a franchise that has had a major impact on anime history, which is why I decided to pick out a few Gundam series which (for better or worse) have lasted within the minds and hearts of fans over the years.
Mobile Suit Gundam
This is the anime series that started it all for Gundam fans… the big bang as it were. Starting in 1979 and lasting for 43 episodes, this is the series that would introduce fans to the Universal Century calendar, characters like Char Aznable and many more features that made fans fall in love with the franchise, and turn it into the phenomenon that it is today.
Mobile Fighter G Gundam
Taking place in the Future Century timeline, this is a series that will forever live on as an infamous chapter in Gundam history due to some of the craziest robot designs to ever be created. In this series, mankind is largely living on space colonies but agree to hold Gundam Fight tournaments once every four years to determine who is control. Each country sends a Gundam back to Earth to fight in a winner take all, one on one tournament until only one Gundam is left standing.
If I were to watch a Gundam series, this is one that I think I would want to check out because of how goofy the designs are. I’m told that this isn’t the best representation of a Gundam series but it’s still one of the most interesting and I knew that it had to be included on this list.
Mobile Suit Gundam Wing
For many fans in the United States, this was their gateway into the Gundam franchise thanks to a run on the afternoon television block Toonami. When I was in high school, this series would air every afternoon and you could find at least half a dozen anime fans sitting in the common area of the school watching it on one of the televisions. This is a pivotal series for many fans in the west and will forever live on in their hearts as a treasured chapter of the franchise.
Gundam Wing: Endless Waltz
I remember about a decade ago (maybe a little more than that) everyone I knew who was even vaguely a Gundam fan had a copy of Endless Waltz on their DVD shelf. It was considered required watching by so many people that it was almost impossible to walk into someone’s house and NOT see a copy of this laying around somewhere. This story takes place in the After Colony timeline and features a story where Gundams are no longer needed. Unfortunately things don’t go as planned and the Gundam pilots must retrieve their Gundam and go into battle once again.
Gundam Build Fighters
One of the more recent and popular entries into the Gundam franchise isn’t really about Gundam at all, but more about Gundam building. This series takes place in the modern era where clubs build Gundam models and put them against each other in competition. This is a series that fans have been raving about ever since the first season premiered a couple of years ago. Gundam fans and non-Gundam fans alike have been able to bond over the heart that this series displayed on a weekly basis, and was even popular enough to spawn a direct sequel: Gundam Build Fighters Try.
These are just a handful of the many, many Gundam series that have been made over the decades but now we want to pose the question to you:
What’s your favorite Gundam series of all time?
Sound off in the comments and let us know!