Episode Analyses

Turn A Gundam Staff, Production, and Episode Analyses – Episode #19 “Sochie’s War”

Turn A Gundam‘s nineteenth episode was broadcast on Fuji TV on August 13, 1999. This episode was produced in cooperation with studio Artland.

Turn A Gundam‘s nineteenth episode was broadcast on Fuji TV on August 13, 1999.

Militia members are angry that Guin has brought on Moonrace engineers to help with the excavation of the Willghem (the spaceship). Guin however rebuts by pointing out that they need their help to get it up-and-running. We are introduced to a chubby Moonrace engineer named Horace, who’ll be a recurring character for the remainder of the show. He’s a very knowledgeable fellow whose thirst for knowledge allows him to serve as a a explanatory character of sorts. For instance, he suggests that special nanoskin might have been what prevented the mechanical dolls from degradation as they rested in the mountain cycles for millennia. Character designer Akiman modeled his hairstyle after someone he personally knew.

The Militia and Moonrace engineers have excavated a small land battleship that uses hover locomotion and thrusters to stay afloat. It’s seemingly a small transportation base for mobile suit repairs. Guin assigns Loran as its captain and orders him to tidy it up for operation, and Dianna offers her assistance—she later points out that the battleship seems highly mobile too, as if moving at a “gallop” like a horse; they aptly name it the Gallop. It’s in direct reference to the Gallop-class hovercraft from the original Mobile Suit Gundam, which was used the flagship of Ramba Ral.

This episode has a very cute and endearing scene: Dianna doing the laundry! Much to Loran’s distress, of course, as he exclaims that a queen shouldn’t have to involve herself in such chores. She uses the White Doll’s hands to hoist a clothes line. Not only does this fit the show’s emphasis on practical purpose mobile suit usage, but Dianna herself is an advocate of the idea that a machine is not just a tool for war, i.e. the pilot makes the machine. The two also talk about Kihel’s dazzling speech at the ceremony, and Dianna approves of Kihel’s rejection of statehood and finding ways to avoid fighting.

Horace and the engineers have removed the White Doll’s head for examination. They discover that the suit is equipped with nanomachines that allow itself to reconstruct itself after taking damage, as if internally aware of its overall design. Even its damaged mustache is slowly recovering to its original form. He further comments that nanomachines are vital to urban construction on the Moon, but the White Doll’s technology is far more advanced and closer to that of a biological process. This type of pseudo-sentience to mobile suits is nothing new for Tomino; Ideon, Brain Powerd, and later on King Gainer & G-Reco all incorporate elements of it. Horace is piqued by the mysterious nature of the White Doll and wonders if it’s a “Gundam”, as spoken about in myth and legends. According to him, the “Gundam” was a tormenter of space immigrants.

At the Soleil, Kihel (as “Dianna”) asks Harry if there are people who oppose her rejection of statehood, a la those who would reject the Dianna monarchy. Harry claims that it’d be the type of moderate person who follows Agrippa Maintainer. Even though the Moonrace has waited a millennium for the Earth Return Plan, public sentiment can change now that it’s actually happening. However, he insists that, despite it all, he will do everything in his power to make sure she remains safe. This reassures Kihel, and the viewer can tell that she’s beginning to develop feelings for Harry.

Back at the Gallop, Sochie appears out of nowhere to give Loran a piece of her mind (her words!). She’s upset that Loran isn’t at the frontlines like her and is instead in charge of a mobile shelter to fix & repair mechanical dolls. It’s worth nothing that this functionality of the Gallop actually fits Loran’s personality very well. He’s a defender and protector type of person, one who ensures the safety of the people close to him—a natural pacifist, not a fighter. Loran retorts that he’s always willing to head to combat if he’s called for it, but Sochie isn’t convinced. She thinks he’s simply just clinging to Kihel and “chasing” after her. Sochie asks Dianna if she or Miashei would be a better fit, but Dianna thinks Loran will do a fine job commanding the Gallop. Sochie begrudgingly obliges (remember, she still does not know that Dianna is “Kihel”). The two see Dianna off, who leaves in a car… somewhere…

Poe is on patrol with a squadron of WaDoms and spots the Gallop and the headless White Doll that is in repair, so she commences an attack to capture it. Loran and Sochie spot the group, and despite Loran warning her of the dangers, Sochie launches in her Kapool to engage the enemy. In the midst of the chaos, Horace releases the White Doll’s head for Loran to catch it and place it onto its body. Once he’s combat-ready, he pushes back some of the WaDoms and then goes to Sochie’s rescue who’s in a bit of a pinch. The Gallop provides backup fire as well. The episode ends with Sochie apologizing for rushing into combat and causing problems for everyone.

Turn A Gundam Episode #19 Credits
Loran – Romi Park
Kihel – Rieko Takahashi
Dianna – Rieko Takahashi
Sochie – Akino Murata
Guin – Gou Aoba
Sid – Akio Nojima
Ladderum – Ikuya Sawaki
Horace – Hirohiko Kakegawa
Harry – Tetsu Inada
Phil – Tsuyoshi Koyama
Poe – Yumiko Nakanishi
Operation Chief – Yutaka Aoyama
Operation Soldier A – Dai Matsumoto
Operation Soldier B – Toshihide Tsuchiya

Key Animation – Nobuaki Shirai, Masaki Hinata, Masashi Kudo, Naoko Ozawa, Yoshitaka Kato, Hideo Kawaguchi, Toshio Kobayashi, Naoki Aisaka, Masakazu Kawazoe, Masami Nagata, Seiichi Tanaka, Etsushi Mori, Yasushi Shingo, Studio Dove

In-between Check – Chie Kokubo
In-betweens – Studio Dove (Liu Jun, Akihiro Saitou, Tomohiro Zaizen, Katsuhiro Yokoyama, Mari Yasuhiko, Kazuko Otake, Reiko Saito, Seoul Dove, Shanghai Dove)
Art Land – FAI International

Color Setting – Akemi Nagao (EMUAI)
Assistant Color Coordinator – Miyuki Sato (EMUAI)
Finishing – EMUAI (Toru Kawamura, Atsuko Iiyama, Mizuho Ueda, Mayuko Kato, Junko Iida, Miho Tanak), FAI International

Art Board – Yukiko Maruyama (Atelier Musa)
Backgrounds – White Map (Masashi Hasegawa, Sachie ENdo, Jun Sakurai, Akiko Manabe)
Special Effects – Toshio Hasegawa (Marix)
Title Lith Work – Maki Pro

Photography – Asahi Production (Shinya Sawada, Atsushi Tamura, Asami Kumazawa, Noriaki Akitaya, Tomokazu Kaneko, Akihiko Fujino)
Assitant Editor – Nobuhiro Akiho (Jay Film)
Development – Tokyo Laboratory

Sound design – Koji Kasamatsu
Foley – Eiko Morikawa
Recording Adjustment – Yasushi Nagura (Avaco Creative Studio)
Recording Adjustment Assistant – Mika Kamemoto (Avaco Creative Studio)
Sound Production – Rakuonsha
Desk – Yoshimi Sugiyama
Music Production – Yoshiaki Ota (Borderline Records)
Digital Effects – Sunrise D.I.D. (Hiroshi Furuhashi, Makoto Takakura)
Digital Coloring – EMUAI
Video Editing – Qtec
Telecine – Makoto Imazuka
Video Editor – Tetsuro Fujita

Mechanical Design – Hitoshi Iwaki, Yoshikazu Miyao, Junya Ishigaki, Mahiro Maeda, Tsukasa Dokite
Setting Proof – Shigeru Morita (Studio Nue)
Title Logo Design – Daisuke Unno

PR Management – Sachio Tamenaga (Fuji TV), Kaoru Asai (Sunrise)
Setting Management – Shigeru Horiguchi, Yoshitaka Kawaguchi

Episode Director – Masato Kitagawa
Animation Director – Noboru Sugimitsu
Screenplay – Hiroyuki Hoshiyama
Storyboard – Toshifumi Kawase, Minoru Yokitani
Assistant Episode Director – Satoshi Toba
Production Advancement – Michiru Taiko
Production Cooperation – Art Land
Production Desk – Yoichi Watanabe
Literary Coordinator – Tetsuko Takahashi
Setting Production – Koji Yasukawa
Production Secretary – Michiko Yamamoto
Production Advancement – Hirofumi Ogura

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