Extra: Welcome to America!

In Japan, no show is more iconic than the Gundam series. While the idea of giant robots fighting certainly wasn’t anything new to Japan, Gundam was the first series to successfully pull it all off, and in a very serious manor at that. Interestingly enough, Gundam wasn’t out to break any records. They weren’t even aiming to be a classic show. All they wanted was to sell stuff. Models kits, to be precise. Like Zoids, Gundam only made an animated show to increase its toy sales. Luckily for them, it worked. But it also went farther than they bargained for. Gundam quickly became a new standard for robot shows. All other robot fighting series would be compared to it, almost to a brutal point.

One would think that all this popularity in Japan would have surly carried the series over to America. But, oddly, that’s not the case. It wasn’t until late in 1999 that Gundam made an appearance in America and it wasn’t the original series. It was Gundam Wing that made its debut. And it was a hit (it still has an insane amount of fanfics on fanfiction.net), opening the door for other Gundam shows, from G Gundam to Seed to the original UC series (some of the Gundam series are set in alternate universes that are named by how that world dates the years.The original universe is termed UC, while Gundam Wing is set in AC). It also, of course, sold a lot of toys. Even Walmart carried Gundam action figures in bulk back then.

Unfortunately, Gundam is unlikely to enjoy that early US success again as Bandai no longer sells their titles in America. While other companies, like Crunchyroll, still have streaming licenses for some of these classics, there’s a chance others will simply never see the light of day here. And the toy industry for them in the states is pretty much gone. However, fads do have a strange way of coming back into style years later… Maybe the next few generations will get a chance to welcome back Gundam to the US. Until then, enjoy the free streaming (while it lasts). But good luck if you have a craving for the toys…

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About inrosegalaxy

Raised on everything from Moby Dick to the Star Wars X-Wing books from a young age, it came as no surprise to anyone who knew me that I’d become a literature graduate and avid writer. But my love of a good story wasn’t restricted to the written word in my early years. Star Trek, Mystery Science Theater 3000, and badly dubbed Godzilla flicks helped shape my love of science fiction on screen as well. I wrote my first story while in the second grade. It was a horrifying tale about murdering a fairy-eating dog via a slice of pizza (in my defense, my only exposure to pizza was in the cafeteria and I swear you could legitimately kill someone with those things). I was a special snowflake. Today I write science fiction, fairy tales, Gothic epistolaries, fantasy and anything else that pops into my bizarre and twisted mind. I write new articles for my blog every Tuesday and Thursday. And if you happen to fancy Japanese animation, I also run an anime review blog, RRAR, which updates every Monday.

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