This week I’m going back to Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin with volume 9 of the manga, as a long-awaited meeting comes to pass.

Manga Title: Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin – Volume 9
Story and Art by Yoshikazu Yasuhiko
Original Story by Yoshiyuki Tomino
Mechanical Design by Kunio Okawara
Translation by Melissa Tanaka

Available from Amazon.com

The Premise

With the Zeon occupation of Earth routed, White Base sets out once again for space. No longer are they on the run. Their mission now is to pull hit-and-run attacks on Zeon forces, and to keep them disorganized while Federation troops prepare to push into Zeon space.

However, Zeon is putting its faith in the discovery of psychically gifted people called Newtypes. Little does Zeon high command that there are some Newtypes on White Base as well…

High Points

There are so many major reunions and first meetings in this volume. Char & Amuro and Char & Lalah Sune finally meet face-to-face for the first time – with the meeting between Char and Amuro having echoes of Amuro’s first meeting with Ranba Ral. Amuro and his father, and Sayla and Char are finally re-united and able to talk but both of their meetings drive them further apart – Amuro’s father having been driven mad by oxygen deprivation, and Char having bought into the idea of Newtypes being a new master race, and ultimately adopting a viewpoint like Zeon’s spacenoid-supremicist views, but on steroids.

On another note, this volume really shows just how far the crew of White Base has come as soldiers.

Low Points

In earlier volumes, I had an idea of Char’s end game – vengeance in a sort of mecha Count of Monte Cristo fashion – manipulate the Zabi family so they undermine the war effort themselves through their pride and ambition, ultimately leading to their deaths. Now it’s not clear if he even has an endgame. It’s actually rather disappointing.

Scores

Originality: 4/6
Artwork: 6/6
Story: 5/6
Emotional Response: 5/6
Characterization: 5/6
Flow: 6/6
Overall: 5/6

In total, Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin, Volume 9 gets 36 out of 42.