What do we know about Turn A Space?

I was asked recently about Turn A Space, so I figured I’d use the opportunity to write up a little post summarizing what’s out there. So, what is Turn A Space? It is, of course, related to Turn A Gundam, and a concept or idea Yoshiyuki Tomino once had that never came to fruition. There are many rumors surrounding what it would have entailed, and as such, much of this post is dictated by rumor.

A screenshot from Turn A Gundam ep #35

What little DO we know about Turn A Space? Here’s a brief rundown I’ve gathered from bits and pieces of rumor and hearsay:

  • along with mobile suits, it’d feature mecha from Tomino’s works outside of Gundam, such as Dunbine or Ideon. Much as Turn A Gundam “unifies” the Gundam timeline, Turn A Space would “unify” Tomino’s filmography as a whole.
  • it is unclear whether Turn A Space was the original project plan for Turn A Gundam or not. There is reason to believe it’s what Tomino initially wanted to do but was forced to adapt to fit it within the Gundam framework. There’s also reason to believe it was planned as a sequel to Turn A Gundam.
  • if a sequel, what exactly it’d entail is anyone’s guess. It’s reasonable to assume that the mountain cycles on the Earth and Moon could begin revealing ancient mecha from works outside of Gundam.

And that’s the gist of it, really.

In 2002 at Anime Expo New York, Tomino revealed to Western audiences that he’d like to create a story close to the world of Gundam that does not continue the metaseries itself. This was never green-lit, and Tomino would instead go on to be involved in other projects such as King GainerThe Wings of Rean, and Gundam Reconguista in G. This gives credence to the rumor that a sequel to Turn A Gundam was being planned on some basic level. In fact, in the Turn A Gundam Blu-ray box 2 audio commentaries (2014), Romi Park and moderator Ryota Fujitsu both share that the show’s ending was left open-ended to leave room for a potential sequel. No further explanation or detail was provided.

So what happened? Why didn’t it see the light of day? According to Tomino, it would need the support of Sunrise and its sponsors; support which was presumably never garnered.

I believe that despite Turn A Space never taking off, aspects of it live on in other works. For example, in Turn A Gundam: Wind of the Moon, a prequel manga by character designer Yasuda Akira (“akiman”), it’s stated that in the past humanity expanded far to the stars and galaxies and built a network encompassing all of “space” (Turn A Space, anyone?). The manga even features mass-produced Turn A variants, as if to indicate that the titular mecha itself is just one but many. I wouldn’t be surprised if the remnants of what began as Turn A Space eventually dialed down to form the basis to Gundam Reconguista in G. Like Turn A Gundam, Reconguista in G is set in the distant future and has callbacks to previous Gundam series. It even dubiously serves as a sequel! To further this claim, in a recent interview Tomino even states that it was not he who decided to attach the Gundam name to Reconguista in G in the first place.

In the end, we don’t know much and I doubt we’ll learn more in the future. Lost in the abyss, Turn A Space~

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