Manga Review: Mobile Suit Gundam – The Origin, Volume 12

Last weekend we concluded the film version of Zeta Gundam. This week we finish the manga version of the original series.

Title: Mobile Suit Gundam – The Origin, Volume 12
Written & Illustrated by Yoshikazu Yasuhiko
Original Story by Yoshiyuki Tomino
Mechanical Design by Kunio Okawara
Translated by Melissa Tanaka

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The Premise

The anger between Char and Amuro has come to a head, as Char challenges Amuro to a sword fight. Meanwhile, Zeon forces loyal to Sayla, and those loyal to the Zabis do battle in Aboa Qu, while alos fighting Federation forces, Kai and Hayato among them.

High Points

The fight between Amuro and Char is appropriately cathartic, considering all the anger and frustration that’s come between them since the very beginning of the series. the entire conclusion of this volume, complete with how Amuro uses his Newtype telepathic abilities, is very well done.

Low Points

The three side stories that wrap up this volume err on the side of slapstick comedy, which occasionally causes some tonal whiplash.


Originality: The conclusion hits most of the same notes from the third compilation film. 4/6

Artwork: This volume uses the art to great effect in order to add some emotional weight to the manga’s conclusion. 6/6

Story: This volume wraps things up very well. 5/6

Emotional Response: 6/6

Characterization: Char’s final character beats in this story feel very well earned. 6/6

Flow: It bears repeating – the conclusion of the story is a three-way fight – but the layout, writing, and art allows you to follow it very easily. 6/6

Overall: This series as a whole is eligible for a Hugo this year for Best Graphic Story. I’m writing this review before the nominations are announced, and I really hope it’s nominated. 6/6

In total, the final volume of Mobile Suit Gundam: the Origin gets 39 out of 42.