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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 3:32 pm 
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I'm going to have to break up the love-in and get real with the themes and messages of this show. It will not be pretty.

But first:

The Forbidden was my favourite Gundam from SEED, it had a well-balanced arsenal and the beam-reflection technology was pretty cool. The Blitz and Aegis are tied for second place, I love the Aegis' MA mode but the Blitz has invisibility and that very useful armed shield. Providence would probably come fourth, because of the funnels.

Okay, here it is.

Although I didn't mind the anti-war message on the first couple of runs through, I've since come to kind of hate it. Co-ordinators may not be a separate species in terms of emotions, but they are in terms of everything else. They don't get many of the diseases that Naturals get, and I would assume that their version of the common cold would kill a Natural, since any disease that could survive a Co-ordinator's enhanced immune system must be pretty frightening. Co-ordinators, on average, have better reflexes, stronger muscles, hardier bodies and better minds.

If I was a Co-ordinator up in the PLANTS I would look down on Naturals, metaphorically (and literally) speaking. If I was a Natural on Earth, I would only have to look up into the night sky to see the twinkling of the PLANTS and realise that there are forty or so million people up there superior to myself in almost every way and armed with better technology. This was a war that NEEDED to be held. If I had been born a Natural, then I would have legitimate reason to hate and fear Co-ordinators. However, if I had been born a Co-ordinator, then I would have legitimate reason to fear and despise Naturals.

Whichever side I would be on, I would be one of the first volunteers for the military. Of course, SEED went out of its way to show us how despicable the leaders were on both sides. Zala and Azrael were horrible people, true, but I think that is actually a major problem with the show. Instead of being comfortable with its strong anti-war message as it stood - showing traumatised orphans and what-not - the show thought that wasn't enough and made the leaders these horrible people that you couldn't morally support. Except I do support them, or at least Zala. Azrael I don't, but I do agree the Blue Cosmos ideology of removing Co-ordinators from the planet, from a Natural point of view of course.

Fact is, the show tried to tell me what to think and who to root for, and that's a big no-no. So the Archangel was supposed to be sacrificed at JOSH-A. I think that was actually a pretty smart tactical move from the part of OMNI, since as powerful as the ship was it was not worth anywhere near as much as 80% of ZAFT's terrestrial forces. Should the crew have been told that they were to be sacrificed? Not sure, there are arguments both for and against. But what I really didn't like is that we were supposed to be outraged that our heroes were to be killed, just because they were the heroes. It's like the crew of the Archangel thought that fighting ZAFT and killing its soldiers was okay, so long as they themselves were not placed in mortal danger. That riles me.

Similarly, we were supposed to be angry at Patrick pointing a gun at his son. Never mind that his son had signed up to be a soldier and obey orders only to disobey direct orders and leave his nuclear-powered Gundam behind somewhere and refuse to divulge its location. Athrun then advanced on his father, or course Patrick was going to point a gun. The fact that they were father and son didn't - and shouldn't - factor into it. In a military, chain of command must surpass familial ties. You cannot expect people do to whatever they hell they want and get away with it just because their superior officer is a family member, that's just not on.

Finally, because although I could talk much more about this I want to keep some powder dry for Burke's thoughts on SEED Destiny, I will just say that I think the anti-war message in SEED was a huge joke. After all, the whole purpose of Gundam is to sell expensive model kits of war machines and to glorify what war might be like in the future. Yet here is one advertisement in question that tries to sugercoat all of this by INCESSANTLY expounding on how bad war really is, all the while showing just how awesome these machines are and having them fight one another with well-choreographed and excellently-scored battle scenes. Oh, the freaking irony of it all.


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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 4:48 pm 
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I'm going to withhold all comments about Destiny until we get to Destiny! Okay, time for scattershot comments.

As far as Kira being the Ultimate Coordinator, I guess myself and a buncha other people were expecting it to be a lot more than it was. With all the drama around the reveal it just seemed like there was a lot more to this Ultimate Coordinator thing and then when you figure out that it just means that you've been "designed" perfectly and came out the exact way you were supposed to and we said ...and?! That's it?! I guess it does work towards the themes of Gundam SEED but it still seems that it was done more for Rau than Kira and you'll see what I mean by that in Destiny. I find it a little amusing that the Ultimate Coordinator issue was brought up in a way in the video game Mass Effect 2, with Miranda Lawson. (I can't decide who's sexier, Murrue or Miranda :))

Murrue's heart-rending scream when Mu dies. Probably one of the best bits of voice acting I've heard from Lisa Ann Beley, better than her cry of Heero!!! at the end of Wing she did as Relena. Can't comment on Sumeragi as I've never really watched 00 in English. Oh Mu, why'd you have to die on her? I thought you were safe! But at least he died in an awesome way. The man got hit with a frickin' ANTIMATTER beam. So sad, even if he physically survived the destruction of the Strike, the bursts of gamma radiation would have killed him anyway. Therefore, I award Mu la Flaga the Roy Focker Medal of Awesome Sempai Death And Going Out Like A G. It's shaped like a pineapple. :P

I did like the ranting/debating that Kira and Rau have as they battle. I do think that it would have been nice if we'd gotten some more hints as to what he was up to. We knew the score with Char as soon as he got Garma killed. In Rau's defense I liked that while he had a mask, he didn't have a red MS or a red uniform.

Miriallia and Dearka... are they or aren't they...? I would have liked it if they were.

Yzak finally becomes cool! Speaking of Yzak, I wonder what happened to his mom?

Natarle Badgiruel. After thinking about it some more, I think she's kinda the Boromir of this series. She honestly believed that doing things the way she was trained too would help make a difference, that her loyalty to the Alliance would allow her to do what she thought was right. All that turned out wrong and even though she made some bad calls, she did the right thing in the end and died a hero, even if no one but us knows it.
Spoiler: show
Wasn't there a scene in Destiny were Murrue expresses regret for killing Natarle in anger?
She even went out a lot like Boromir too, getting shot multiple times by Azrael!

Kira Yamato. I like him as a Gundam lead, he cries a bit too much, but I like him, perhaps a bit more than Kamille. I still like the Gundam Meisters better though.

The METEORs are awesome but too bad they were used more to shoot down missiles than awesomely blowing up battalions of MS.

Ahh, why couldn't my girl Cagalli get more screen time in the Strike Rouge to awesomely blow up grunts? That's a strike against SEED
Spoiler: show
and Destiny
, no awesome female Gundam Pilots. The cute Astray girls come close but the M1s don't quite count. Still, I award Mayura Labatt, Juri Wu Nien and Asagi Caldwell the Biggs Darklighter Distinguished Named Grunt Death Cross. Keep on keeping on girls.

In the final analysis, as much fun as I had watching SEED the first time, compared with other entries in the series, most recently 00, I still have to dock it points for following First Gundam's basic plot points for about 2/3 of the show. There are some dropped plot threads that should have been expounded on. But I still enjoy it and it's one of my favorite Gundam series so far. I may get crap for this but I think it's a better entry in the pantheon of Gundam than F91 or Victory (Victory actually depressed me!)

Since I typed this up without having access to the internet, I couldn't post it earlier, so I'll have to post what I have and do more later.

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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 5:02 pm 
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I wish I had something productive to add to what everyone else is saying, but I'm afraid I really don't. I'd like to again thank you for the wonderful trip down memory lane though, and a fresh viewpoint on the show. I'm very much looking forward to your views on Destiny, and much more so 00.

In particularly I wonder what you'll think of Sumeragi from 00, seeing as how you've warmed up so well to Murrue. >.>


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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 5:49 pm 
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Burke Rukes wrote:
I hope to watch it again not too long from now. Maybe I'll give the English dub a whirl and see how it holds up. :)


I'm more of a dub guy, so long as the dub is solid or exceptional. SEED has a solid dub with some exceptional moments. (Rau, Mu, Murrue all give outstanding performances to name a few).

Arbiter GUNDAM wrote:
In the final analysis, as much fun as I had watching SEED the first time, compared with other entries in the series, most recently 00, I still have to dock it points for following First Gundam's basic plot points for about 2/3 of the show. There are some dropped plot threads that should have been expounded on. But I still enjoy it and it's one of my favorite Gundam series so far. I may get crap for this but I think it's a better entry in the pantheon of Gundam than F91 or Victory (Victory actually depressed me!)


Hmm. That's a tough question of where SEED fits into the pantheon! (I've been able to get over a lot of its similarities to 0079 in recent years due to its quirky changes that provide a different tone). I haven't seen more than a few episodes of Victory (intriguing), have only seen half of Zeta (not finding it all that exceptional), and not one whole episode of ZZ, Turn-A, or AGE. That said...in terms of TV Gundam (because judging movies and especially OVAs in comparison gets tricky)

I like SEED better than 00 overall. (Too many missteps and rushed/unfulfilled/unsatisfying plot points and character explorations in 00). And I think Destiny, while not as solid as SEED*, held my attention more than 00 as a whole as 00 slipped into the
Spoiler: show
inane Trinity siblings
and then the quagmire of Season 2. I've yet to see the movie finale, which does have me intrigued; though I doubt it can undo the damage altogether.

*And I realize Destiny perhaps had just as much in unfulfilled promises as 00, but it kept me believing much longer with the stage presence of characters like
Spoiler: show
Durandal, Gibril, Shinn, Neo, Talia, Rey, and Athrun's conflict of interest, and what decisions they would all make and what their end games were. (I didn't give a hoot about much of the SEED Season 1 cast, as they horned in on everything and Cagalli did her cry attack over ocean waters I don't know how many times). In short, I guess I cared about the charcters more than in 00. I stopped caring in 00 a few episodes into Season 2, and wasn't fully sold before then because not enough solo time and variety of scenarios had been given.


So, my favorite TV series are Wing, G, X, and then 0079, I think. So, SEED slips somewhere around X and 0079 probably...

But if we bring in OVAs, I don't think SEED is better than 0080 or 08th MS Team (which are up there with G and Wing). Is it better than 0083? Too close to call; for all of 0083's missteps, it really is a spectacle-and-a-half. If you pressed me, even if its unfair, I probably like SEED a little better than Char's Counterattack and F-91 (though the latter has grown on me with re-watchings).

APendragon wrote:
I'm very much looking forward to your views on Destiny, and much more so 00.In particularly I wonder what you'll think of Sumeragi from 00, seeing as how you've warmed up so well to Murrue. >.>


Spoiler: show
Murrue > Sumeragi: Drunken plot point aside, Sumeragi came off as a half-explored clone of Murrue more than was needed (she even had the dead pilot boyfriend), and she seemed to be less and less important as things went along. The Billy/Sumeragi subplot was good in Season 1, but became goofy in Season 2. In retrospect, I think it was Season 2 that hurt her for me, because she fit well into the flow of the plot and had good command during the HRL/Sergei space duels. All the Katy duel stuff was too fast and convenient. But, regardless, why would they put in a character so similar in such a short amount of time between series? They could have done a lot more with Sumeragi to make her her own woman. It was like when they did the War for Two beach adventure with Al and Marie way to close to SEED, Destiny, and Code Geass--it just felt shoe-horned in, unoriginal, and rushed. And that whole plot point between Al and Marie became something to brush aside. Eh. Sorry. I guess I'm still stewing a bit on the way 00 was executed. It did have a lot of good points mixed in, but it just felt underdeveloped--partially due to the time skip, 2-season format. Nevertheless, I shouldn't complain. I did get some enjoyment from 00. It's just that unlike Destiny, which had already had the luxury of exploring its AU world through SEED, 00 was starting from scratch with a lot of potential, and never fully got off the ground because it kept shooting itself in the foot, not wanting to give appropriate time to character development and the workings of the world and its rival "aces"

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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:48 pm 
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Izayuukan wrote:
Although I didn't mind the anti-war message on the first couple of runs through, I've since come to kind of hate it.

Gundam Seed does not have an anti-war message. It, like most Gundam, does not simply say "war is bad, you shouldn't do it". It says "war is bad, but sometimes not fighting is worse". Recall that Orb is not pacifistic, does not advocate talking through its differences with its enemies. Orb is militantly neutral; "we won't start any fights, but if someone starts one with us, we'll do our damnedest to kick their ass". This is the real message of Gundam Seed. Not "wars are bad, don't fight them", but "wars are bad, so don't start them, but don't let anyone who does start one with you push you around".

Izayuukan wrote:
forty or so million people up there superior to myself in almost every way and armed with better technology.

It's actually about 30 million people total (120 PLANTs with a quarter million people each), an unknown percentage of which are presumably Naturals (unless one assumes that Coordinators universally abandon their Natural relatives -- parents of first generation Coordinators most especially). But more importantly, Coordinators do not have better technology. If you compare the tech created by Coordinators by the tech created by Naturals, even just during the war, Naturals win by a mile. Coordinators created mobile suits, N-Jammers, N-Jammer Cancelers, and DRAGOONs; those are the major new pieces of tech that show up during the war. At the same time, Naturals came up with phase shift, beam weaponry, Mirage Colloid, transforming MS, laminate armor, positron weaponry, trans-phase shift, and Geschmeidig Panzer. The story is much the same in the sequel (though I won't get into it here, to avoid spoilers).

Long story short, while they may be physiologically superior (better reflexes, immune systems, etc), there's nothing to suggest they're mentally superior.

Izayuukan wrote:
Fact is, the show tried to tell me what to think and who to root for, and that's a big no-no.

Every work of fiction does this. The creator always has a point of view, even if they're not actively trying to push it on the audience, it's impossible to completely separate a creator from the work they create. Calling Gundam Seed on it specifically seems to be criticism for criticism's sake.

Izayuukan wrote:
It's like the crew of the Archangel thought that fighting ZAFT and killing its soldiers was okay, so long as they themselves were not placed in mortal danger.

There's a large difference between "being told to do something dangerous" and "being tricked into allowing yourself to be killed". It wasn't just the fact that they were being sacrificed in order to pull off the ruse that pissed them off -- it's that they were deliberately singled out as someone to be killed off. They pulled their favorites -- Natarle, Flay, and IIRC Mu -- off the ship, because they wanted the rest of the crew dead. If there's a difference between being told to do something dangerous and being tricked into allowing yourself to be killed, there's a huge difference between being put into danger and being deliberately murdered by your supposed allies.

Izayuukan wrote:
Similarly, we were supposed to be angry at Patrick pointing a gun at his son. Never mind that his son had signed up to be a soldier and obey orders only to disobey direct orders and leave his nuclear-powered Gundam behind somewhere and refuse to divulge its location.

Fun fact: soldiers are legally required to disobey illegal orders. Such as genocide. The excuse "I was just following orders" hasn't been valid since WWII -- Athrun was both morally and legally in the right in that situation.

Izayuukan wrote:
The fact that they were father and son didn't - and shouldn't - factor into it. In a military, chain of command must surpass familial ties. You cannot expect people do to whatever they hell they want and get away with it just because their superior officer is a family member, that's just not on.

Then ignore the family aspect and consider that Patrick just tried to summarily execute a subordinate for refusing to go along with genocide. He doesn't come off in a positive light there, either.

Izayuukan wrote:
I will just say that I think the anti-war message in SEED was a huge joke. [...] expounding on how bad war really is, all the while showing just how awesome these machines are and having them fight one another with well-choreographed and excellently-scored battle scenes. Oh, the freaking irony of it all.

This isn't unique to Gundam Seed, either. Every Gundam series falls victim to it. Hell, everything ever about war falls victim to it. No matter how terrible you try to make war look in fiction, there will be some people who think it looks cool. Singling out Gundam Seed for this is, again, criticism for criticism's sake.

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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 7:22 pm 
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I look forward to Burke's first impressions of my favorite Gundam series, even though it might be negative like all the rest. :(


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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 8:46 pm 
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Brave Fencer Kirby wrote:
Gundam Seed does not have an anti-war message. It, like most Gundam, does not simply say "war is bad, you shouldn't do it". It says "war is bad, but sometimes not fighting is worse". Recall that Orb is not pacifistic, does not advocate talking through its differences with its enemies. Orb is militantly neutral; "we won't start any fights, but if someone starts one with us, we'll do our damnedest to kick their ass". This is the real message of Gundam Seed. Not "wars are bad, don't fight them", but "wars are bad, so don't start them, but don't let anyone who does start one with you push you around".


You do make a good point, I concede that the show did say fighting was okay as long as you are protecting something. But what about the Naturals trying to protect themselves from the Co-ordinators, and vice-versa? One side were losing jobs, their economy and their place as the dominant species alive, while the other lost a quarter-million people from nukes.

Brave Fencer Kirby wrote:
It's actually about 30 million people total (120 PLANTs with a quarter million people each), an unknown percentage of which are presumably Naturals (unless one assumes that Coordinators universally abandon their Natural relatives -- parents of first generation Coordinators most especially). But more importantly, Coordinators do not have better technology. If you compare the tech created by Coordinators by the tech created by Naturals, even just during the war, Naturals win by a mile. Coordinators created mobile suits, N-Jammers, N-Jammer Cancelers, and DRAGOONs; those are the major new pieces of tech that show up during the war. At the same time, Naturals came up with phase shift, beam weaponry, Mirage Colloid, transforming MS, laminate armor, positron weaponry, trans-phase shift, and Geschmeidig Panzer. The story is much the same in the sequel (though I won't get into it here, to avoid spoilers).

Long story short, while they may be physiologically superior (better reflexes, immune systems, etc), there's nothing to suggest they're mentally superior.


Junius 7 was not only at half-population when it was destroyed, but as a farming colony it probably wasn't intended to have many people in the first place compared to other colonies. I would say forty million is a conservative estimate, although you are right in thinking that many of those would be Naturals.

A lot of those things Orb came up with, not the Earth Alliance, and Orb used Co-ordinators. It was a big point in the early episodes of SEED Destiny. Co-ordinators are also shown to have enhanced mental abilities, at least on average. The smartest Co-ordinator may not be smarter than the smartest Natural, but that doesn't matter when the population of the PLANTS on average are smarter.

Brave Fencer Kirby wrote:
Every work of fiction does this. The creator always has a point of view, even if they're not actively trying to push it on the audience, it's impossible to completely separate a creator from the work they create. Calling Gundam Seed on it specifically seems to be criticism for criticism's sake.


It was doing it pretty crudely, and I assert that it was indeed telling us what to think. I've read Starship Troopers many times and I've never thought that it was as pushy as SEED was. I disagree with Heinlein by the way on much of his politics, so it isn't because I'm biased. It is one thing to say "this is what I believe in and what I believe will work" and quite another to say "this is what is right and true". Heinlein was pushy, but he was never preachy. That's the best way I can put it.

Brave Fencer Kirby wrote:
There's a large difference between "being told to do something dangerous" and "being tricked into allowing yourself to be killed". It wasn't just the fact that they were being sacrificed in order to pull off the ruse that pissed them off -- it's that they were deliberately singled out as someone to be killed off. They pulled their favorites -- Natarle, Flay, and IIRC Mu -- off the ship, because they wanted the rest of the crew dead. If there's a difference between being told to do something dangerous and being tricked into allowing yourself to be killed, there's a huge difference between being put into danger and being deliberately murdered by your supposed allies.


One group being used as cannon-fodder has happened time and time again throughout history, and while it is not okay to do so, it is also not okay to turn traitor and run away just because you got the short end of the stick. ANZAC soldiers at Gallipoli didn't run away, they toughed it out despite Churchill's incompetence and the clusterf*ck the situation turned into.

I guess my real gripe is that if the Archangel crew was indeed singled out by the writers as being too important to kill. I bet Murrue and the crew wouldn't have agreed with the plan even if they had been told about it. In real life soldiers are expendable, and taking three useful people off a ship that was intended to be sacrificed anyway (whether its crew were to be told or not) is a sensible decision.

Brave Fencer Kirby wrote:
Fun fact: soldiers are legally required to disobey illegal orders. Such as genocide. The excuse "I was just following orders" hasn't been valid since WWII -- Athrun was both morally and legally in the right in that situation.

Then ignore the family aspect and consider that Patrick just tried to summarily execute a subordinate for refusing to go along with genocide. He doesn't come off in a positive light there, either.


In a war between two species, genocide is not illegal. After all, the Geneva Convention - if it even still existed then, let alone if the PLANTS were a signatory to it - only covers actions by nations of humans against nations of humans. Simply asserting that Co-ordinators did not have to treat Naturals as humans because Naturals were an inferior species would get the PLANTS off the moral and legal hook. Let me put it this way; if I was a Co-ordinator and had been in the room along with Patrick and Athrun I would have sided with Patrick.

To be blunt: this is not a war between two nations, it is a war of survival between two sentient species. If aliens invaded Earth you would not seek to treat them as another nation, you would launch a nuke into their mothership and say sayonara. At least, I hope you would.

Brave Fencer Kirby wrote:
This isn't unique to Gundam Seed, either. Every Gundam series falls victim to it. Hell, everything ever about war falls victim to it. No matter how terrible you try to make war look in fiction, there will be some people who think it looks cool. Singling out Gundam Seed for this is, again, criticism for criticism's sake.


First off, Gundam SEED is pretty much more anti-war than pretty much any other Gundam (that I've seen, which is most of 0079, 08th MS Team, most of 0083, Zeta, Char's Counterattack, Wing, some of Turn A, SEED, SEED Destiny, 00 S1, 00 S2 and half of Unicorn). So the hypocrisy is worst here. I've heard that 0080 is pretty anti-war, but as I haven't seen it I can't speak for it.

Secondly, I take it you have never seen Grave of the Fireflies. It is an anti-war movie which doesn't glorify war at all.


Last edited by Izayuukan on Fri Oct 28, 2011 11:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 9:04 pm 
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@LightningCount: (chuckling) Dude, yours and my opinions about 00 seem to be about as different as night and day! :D
Spoiler: show
I really don't see where you're coming from about Sumeragi being a clone of Murrue. We actually learn more about Sumeragi in-show than we ever do about Murrue. Plus their personalities are different as well. Do they play similar roles in their series? Yes, but I think that's about it.
We can get into this more when Burke gets to 00 or PMs, whatever you feel like. :lol:

Again, I do enjoy SEED, it was the second full-length Gundam I watched after Wing (in between I had seen 08th MS Team, Endless Waltz, Char's Counterattack, 0083 and snippets of 0079 and G Gundam)

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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 9:09 pm 
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Asserting that Coordinators and Naturals are separate species does not make it true.

Gundam SEED really provides no good reason to divide Coordinators and Naturals into separate species, since they're perfectly capable of interbreeding and all, and the similarities between them are far greater than the differences--which, incidentally, is a point that SEED ends up making anyways by lumping a bunch of them together in the Three Ships Alliance and highlighting their commonalities. And although off-hand I can't think of any examples in the animation, the ASTRAY mangas provide the example of Xist Elwes, an Earth Alliance pilot with Coordinator and Natural parents. If they're capable of interbreeding and producing fertile offspring, they're not separate species--and nowhere do they say Xist's got any problems formin' babby. But even without Xist floating around, you'd still be hard-pressed to find such immense, essential differences between Coordinators and Naturals that they should be considered separate species. The approvingly-presented relationship of Athrun and Cagalli, for example, runs rather counter to your assertion that Coordinators and Naturals are different species.

So we're back to plain ol' genocide, and that's even without the host of ethical issues that surround the decision to completely exterminate another intelligent species.


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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 9:28 pm 
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I feel like I should write more. I do.

But all I'm going to say here is that I've now seen, perhaps, the two most disturbing posts I've ever thought I would see in a manga/anime forum, if not in general. I'm going to go shower and get the stench off.


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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 9:30 pm 
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And what posts would those be hmm?

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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 9:42 pm 
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Arbiter GUNDAM wrote:
And what posts would those be hmm?


Now, now, Mister Fry! You won't get me to talk about the war! :P

Burke, please do me a big favor and get to SEED Destiny now. I'll pay for your first pint while watching it! :)


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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 10:15 pm 
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First of all ShadowCell, the interbreeding thing was never raised in either animated series (your post is the first I've ever heard about it), and I have never considered Manga sidestories to be canon anyway.

Let me turn your belief on its head. Asserting that Co-ordinators and Naturals are the same species doesn't make it true. That's called wishful thinking.

Yes, Co-ordinators and Naturals are very alike, in terms of emotions and phenotype. But one is superior to the other in numbers, while the other is superior in terms of average intelligence and average physical abilities. Co-ordinators, if they solved their fertility problems and were left unchecked, would take the best jobs, be the best sportspeople, have the best infantry army, and be the longest-lived (and therefore wisest), and so on and so forth. Resentment would exist amongst Naturals for not being as good as Co-ordinators. Even if Co-ordinators and Naturals existed side by side, Naturals would eventually become relegated to the poorer classes and you might even see an outright caste system being implemented. At best, they would be a minority that are given preferential treatment like many indigenous peoples around the world.

Don't get me wrong, I am not against Co-ordinators. If I was one I would be very happy with my lot in life, and I would naturally consider Naturals to be inferior. If you think most people would think differently you're dreaming.

If a species - intelligent or not - is trying to kill me and my kind (or even just wants to kill me) then I'm going to fight to remove the threat. That's human nature. No matter the similarities, humans will always look at the differences between themselves and others. The world is not kind, or fair, or reasonable. Humans are no different.

Niche differentiation tells us that two species cannot inhabit the same niche at the same time. Long-term, one species must either perish, move away or occupy a different niche (like being slaves to the victors). Therefore, Lacus Clyne can sing the song of peace all she likes. But that song is a false one, a stalling motion, a filibuster if you will. Eventually, one side will win and one side will lose. That's nature for you.

I think the only way to have peace between Co-ordinators and Naturals is to make being a Co-ordinator a human right. If there aren't any Naturals, then there isn't room for conflict. At least, there's one less reason for conflict anyway. Human beings go to war over the stupidest of things . . .



ANYWAY, I too look forward to reading Burke's thoughts on SEED Destiny. I have really enjoyed this thread, made me remember why I loved SEED in the first place. I'm curious to see if he will have the same reaction to SEED Destiny as I did.


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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 11:06 pm 
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I really don't see how Coordinators can be a separate species, though that might be because my major isn't in Biology or genetics. But to me it seems that all Coordinators are, are genetically enhanced homo sapiens, not homo superior or homo coordinator or whatever you want to call them. Are Newtypes a completely separate species? Innovators?

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Now, now, Mister Fry! You won't get me to talk about the war! :P

Huh? I was just trying to see if you were thinkin' what i was thinkin'.

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 Post Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 11:30 pm 
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In social terms, Co-ordinators are indeed a separate species. After all, human history is full of people who think those with different skin colours (a superficial, meaningless difference) are from another, usually inferior species/race. A leader who is wanting to play up differences between Naturals and Co-ordinators would have little problem in convincing their people to go to war with those who are demonstrably different from them in more than just superficial ways.

In biological terms, Co-ordinators are just Homo Superior, because they haven't fixed their fertility problems. Once they do - and believe me, as long as there are humans there will be greedy rich humans who want perfect children, which means fixing the problem will a top priority, so they certainly WILL - then Co-ordinators could be considered a completely different species biologically speaking. Heck, finches can be broken up into many different groups based on tiny differences in their freaking beaks. The sheer amount and size of the differences between Co-ordinators and Naturals would, from a neutral taxidermy viewpoint, easily ensure that Co-ordinators are classified as a separate species.

Not sure about NewTypes. They were enslaved, used as weapons of war and then pretty much died out (which is farfetched; if smallpox is still around, I hardly think that humanity is just going to forget about cyber-NewTypes). I guess I consider New Types to be a temporary class of mutants more than anything else. The idea that simply moving into space would cause some people to have telepathy is a stupid idea anyway. I try not to think about it too much.

As for Innovators,
Spoiler: show
maybe if they had actually DONE something instead of sitting around on their couches then I could comment, but I plead insufficient information. Yeah, they fought in battle, and had links to VEDA, but I still don't have enough to go on. The whole business about magic pixie dust changing people into superhumans is too bizarre to sufficiently contemplate. It makes NewTypes look reasonable.


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 Post Posted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 12:00 am 
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Izayuukan wrote:
Let me turn your belief on its head. Asserting that Co-ordinators and Naturals are the same species doesn't make it true. That's called wishful thinking.

Iza, ShadowCell is not "asserting" Naturals and Coordinators are the same species. He's using the most applicable criteria used by biologists for this case: if two populations can interbreed and produce viable offspring, they are of the same species.

Sure there are more complex layers to it such as geographical location and whatever, but insisting that two populations are different species because of hatred and political climate isn't quite right...scientifically, at least. (And geographical location is not very applicable here because of how mobile humans are, and the fact that Orb exists where both populations live together.)

To me, you can kind of compare the situation of Naturals and Coordinators to animals that can be bred/altered artificially. Let's take dogs for instance:

You can have street dogs and pure-bred pedigree dogs (not to say Naturals are muts, lol.) The pure-bred dogs are created artificially in a sense like Coordinators to have superior characteristics in traits in both appearance and physical ability. These two types of dogs live and think very differently, and yeah I can see how they may fight and tear at each other, but they're all still dogs. And they can interbreed very easily if parts of the population got along, and it shouldn't be that hard for them to get along.

Anyway, that makes my point, right?

***

Burke, I'm happy to see you getting back into Gundam with such a positive impression. I personally abhorred SEED when I first viewed it in its original CN airing, and it stung a little too hard for me to ever rewatch it or to continue on with Destiny. I've had some disagreements to the compliments for the show, but I thought it best to be respectful and keep out of the thread. Though, it gives me hope to see someone else very enthusiastic about the series, and it may give me more reason to not be so harsh on it. I very much enjoyed your writings here. It must have been a lot of hard work, so thanks for taking the time for it.

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 Post Posted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 12:07 am 
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Izayuukan wrote:
In social terms, Co-ordinators are indeed a separate species. After all, human history is full of people who think those with different skin colours (a superficial, meaningless difference) are from another, usually inferior species/race. A leader who is wanting to play up differences between Naturals and Co-ordinators would have little problem in convincing their people to go to war with those who are demonstrably different from them in more than just superficial ways.


This is the most ridiculous argument you could try to use. I can convince a bunch of people that the sky is purple, but that doesn't make it objectively true. A bunch of Naturals can insist until the end of time that Coordinators aren't the same species, but that, is like you said, wishful thinking.

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 Post Posted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 12:40 am 
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I'm not sure why you're bringing up all these extraneous things about niche differentiation and the differences between finches' beaks when you haven't met the most basic criterion of defining separate species. Disregard the manga if you wish; you're still up against a show that portrays the Coordinators as essentially a bunch of gifted human beings. Claim that you're shifting the definition from biological to social; not only is that disingenuous, it's also impossible, because that's not what "species" means. The greatest evidence at any rate that Coordinators and Naturals are capable of interbreeding is the relationship between Athrun and Cagalli, and the relationship, such as it is, between Dearka and Milly. It's not ironclad, but it's certainly more robust than this different-species argument, because otherwise you'd have to explain the basis of sexual attraction between two creatures that cannot actually reproduce, and then Occam's razor will come crashing down like one of SEED's patented great big anti-ship swords.

If not for the show telling you that Coordinators have superior genetics, you would never know it by looking at what the characters do on-screen. The only thing you really see that suggests a Coordinator character has superhuman abilities is Kira's speed-programming. So spinning that portrayal into a claim that Coordinators are an entirely different species, when you have the show piling on the evidence that they are not, makes me wonder what it was you were watching.

And if we're going to disregard manga in this argument (which is completely arbitrary, but fine, I'll play along), I'm not sure why I should buy your extrapolations about niche generalization and growing resentment and how a politician's propaganda decides who is part of species A and who is part of species B. Those are all based on even less than the manga.

But even if we do, it still doesn't matter, for the simple fact that the animation about which you're arguing disagrees with you. You're trying to argue for some vast gulf between Naturals and Coordinators, and the show says you are wrong. If the show about which you're arguing keeps undercutting your argument, well, to quote our friend Kira, "you're wrong!"


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 Post Posted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 1:00 am 
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Chris and Shadowcell, the point I was making was that people go to war over what they perceive to be differences. It doesn't matter if there are differences or not, that's besides the point. As long as people think that there is a difference then that is a source of conflict, even if there is no difference at all.

We fight one another over the smallest of things, such as skin colour or cultural identity or what political system you prefer or what day you take the sabbath on. If we are so eager to do that, do you honestly believe that when you have ACTUAL differences that people would be willing to overlook them?

(I can't talk about politics or religion in specific terms because that's prohibited by forum rules, so please forgive me for not being able to provide better examples like I want to.)

I do still believe that there are actual differences between Co-ordinators and Naturals, that the two are separate species, and that one of them is eventually going to die out (hint: it's the Naturals). I mean, it ain't hard to project yourself into the mindset of a Co-ordinator or Natural and make intelligent and reliable assumptions (don't try and twist those words) based on what we know about human history and the field of evolutionary biology.

I don't think I can put it simpler than that.
If you are both still confused, then I give up trying to convince you and I'll go and watch the second Macross Frontier movie or something. Better for everyone involved I think.



Seraphic, humans are not dogs, but we are animals. And like many animals we are prone to tribalism and forming a group identity. Like many animals, we fight ourselves as well as other species. Ever heard of young males from the same species fighting one another for the right to mate or for access to food and territory? Even if Naturals and Co-ordinators can breed (and the animated franchise is silent on this matter), but even if I accept that they can, then so what? That doesn't mean they aren't separate groups in conflict with one another. A german shepherd can breed with a bichon friese, but if packs of both were starving and fighting over territory then you think the bigger dogs would be willing to share with the littler dogs? You don't think that the bigger dogs would, over time, defeat the littler dogs, as per natural selection?

Besides, dogs are commonly regarded to be highly unusual with their ability to cross-breed. You would never see that level of physical difference in amongst most species, so it is an exception that doesn't really prove anything.


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 Post Posted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 1:28 am 
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Izayuukan wrote:
Chris and Shadowcell, the point I was making was that people go to war over what they perceive to be differences. It doesn't matter if there are differences or not, that's besides the point. As long as people think that there is a difference then that is a source of conflict, even if there is no difference at all.

We fight one another over the smallest of things, such as skin colour or cultural identity or what political system you prefer or what day you take the sabbath on. If we are so eager to do that, do you honestly believe that when you have ACTUAL differences that people would be willing to overlook them?


Irrelevant. You're trying to make scientific claims about Coordinators and Naturals being different species, while at the same time throwing in societal issues that have nothing to do with the science.

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