Hot Tomato Soup

Thoughts and observations from Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch from Mercury Episodes 13-25

I’m not sure what I was expecting from the back half of G Witch. Six more episodes of D-D-DUELS? Business Time Miorine? Secelia’s thunder thighs? I knew “Quiet Zero” would be the end-game for this show as every Gundam series has to have some big-box plot, and as usual, a “Death Star” superweapon. Some points for ingenuity that the superlaser was actually just a regular laser that some lab-boy figured out they could just overload and make a superlaser. As for “Quiet Zero”, if you’re an IT professional, what this entire story boils down to, is Prospera Mercury transmuted her daughter into data packets within a Gundam mainframe, and in order for her to be able to “live free”, she intends to force everyone to turn spanning tree off, so her daughter can broadcast packets within every interconnected system in the universe all day, every day. Shou Tucker ain’t shit now, we have a new Worst Parent Ever.

Truly horrifying

But since this is a Gundam series, and that kind of plot doesn’t satisfy the usual WAR = BAD mantra, they needed to layer on some additional warring. Enter the seemingly dull and complicated corporate wars and proxy wars segments briefly looked at in the first cour. Imma be honest, I kind of checked out through most of this, because it was just extremely difficult to follow which house was what was undercutting who was overselling what was merging this was liquidating that. It felt extremely obfuscated and unnecessary. Even the show felt it was a bit too much and tried to simplify it by kicking Suletta out of the Gundam, taking away her Holder status, and just making her an everyday schoolgirl. It kinda reminded me of the part of Evengelion where Shinji got the boot for the dummy plug and tried to live his normal life. But in both instances, how do you live a normal life when your batshit insane lifegiver is running amok trying to SSH into everyone’s Cisco switch so they can plug their kind-of-dead daughter into it?

I actually did like the back half of G Witch more than the front. A lot of that is probably because I just tire of the usual sort of duels for honor or brides or whatever. It’s not a genre, it’s just lazy. It also makes you feel a little cheated because Suletta wasn’t really in control the entire time, Ericht was. Even if you were kind of surprised at that reveal, the back of your mind was probably like “Man I fucking KNEW it!” as you skirt that thin line between fake gamer girl and she’s a Mary Sue! What would have maybe enhanced that a little more is if other characters besides Belmeria knew something that might’ve pointed them in the direction of her being a clone the same way she kinda knew Elan wasn’t the same person as before. If this show had at least one more cour (ideally, two) I would have liked to see the middle actually explain the corpo bullshit and political intrigue, while casting more suspicion and doubt on Suletta than she got. Other examples of plot lines that could have been expanded:

  • The Earthian terrorist organization, orphans, and how that whole pipeline was constructed by Grassley and Shaddiq
  • How Delling went from the military to private companies and was able to consolodate power.
  • Prospera’s slow decent into madness
  • GUND-ARM Inc actually doing something in the show instead of just being a chess piece. No, the artificial legs don’t count, they got less screen time than Ericht.
The only truly shocking scene of the anime. Petra MVP.

Ultimately, it comes down to the Gundam-on-Gundam action, and mobile suit fights. Those were predictably solid and on-point. This is one of the few shows that kept some of the more fantastical backpack features to a minimum, and instead showcased some good melee weapon combat, with both the usual beam sabers, and other beam weapons. Earlier I quipped that many of the duels seemed a bit boring, both in suit variety and combat. This got much better once they got out of the school and into space, depots, ships, and even Earth. I also enjoyed that the final battle had Suletta going in without Eri’s help, having to bear down on her own expertise and incur the weight of the system trying to kill her. For a character that had no real stakes up until now, it paid off in spades, and she damn well deserves Miorine.

Unordered List of Thoughts

  • MVP of the Show: Three-way tie between Norea, Petra, and Lilique. This show wanted to start a race war between Earth and Space, but then wussed out halfway in. Norea was the only one keeping on-brand throughout the show. Petra jumped up to the top by the end just being so wholesome about her love for Lauda. Lilique is just too fucking pure for this show, and part of me secretly hoped she would newtype the fuck out and absolutely wreck someone’s shit.
  • Lowest of the Low: Martin. What a baby-back-bitch. How did he end up the head of Earth House over literally anyone else there? I know the plot needed someone to be the fall guy, but he was the fall factory. Nika should have decked him at least once for what she got put through.
  • I like how Prospera is all nimbly-bimbly prior to the three-year timeskip, and then just looks like she checked the fuck out once confined to a wheelchair. Suzuhara Shuko had more life in her in Angelic Layer.
  • It’s convenient how they moved Eri to the keychain, but it would have been nice to know how. Did someone figure out how to finally download her into a device? Is this Nanoha now?
  • OP/EDs were extremely good, especially the ED for the back half. I always love songs that have good lead-in transitions from the episode into the ED.
  • “There are fourteen varieties of tomato soup available from this replicator.”
Yes I will paint your toenails if you sit on my face thank you.

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