Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin

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Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin
Mobile Suit Gundam The Origin cover.jpg
Volume one cover of Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin manga
機動戦士ガンダム THE ORIGIN
(Kidō Senshi Gandamu Ji Orijin)
GenreMecha, military science fiction, space opera
Written byYoshikazu Yasuhiko
Published byKadokawa Shoten
English publisher
Viz Media (former)
Vertical Inc. (current)
MagazineGundam Ace
Original runJune 25, 2001June 25, 2011
Volumes23 (12 in English) (List of volumes)
Original video animation
Directed byYoshikazu Yasuhiko
Takashi Imanishi
Produced byOsamu Taniguchi
Written byKatsuyuki Sumisawa
Music byTakayuki Hattori
Licensed by
Released February 28, 2015 November 19, 2016
Runtime58–68 minutes
Episodes4 (List of episodes)
Mobile Suit Gundam The Origin MSD:
Cucuruz Doan's Island
Written byJunji Ōno
Published byKadokawa Shoten
MagazineGundam Ace
Original runJune 25, 2016May 25, 2019
Original video animation
Mobile Suit Gundam The Origin: Loum Arc
Directed byYoshikazu Yasuhiko
Takashi Imanishi
Produced byOsamu Taniguchi
Written byKatsuyuki Sumisawa
Music byTakayuki Hattori
Licensed by
Released September 2, 2017 May 5, 2018
Runtime84 minutes each
Episodes2 (List of episodes)
Anime television series
Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin –
Advent of the Red Comet
Directed byYoshikazu Yasuhiko
Takashi Imanishi
Produced byOsamu Taniguchi
Written byKatsuyuki Sumisawa
Music byTakayuki Hattori
Licensed by
Original networkNHK General TV
English network
Original run April 29, 2019 August 12, 2019
Episodes13 (List of episodes)

Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin (Japanese: 機動戦士ガンダム THE ORIGIN, Hepburn: Kidō Senshi Gandamu Ji Orijin) is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Yoshikazu Yasuhiko. It is a retelling of the story from the 1979 anime television series Mobile Suit Gundam, of which Yasuhiko was the original character designer.

An original video animation adaptation of the manga, focusing on the stories of Casval Rem Deikun (more famously known as Char Aznable) and his sister Artesia (aka Sayla Mass), produced by Sunrise was released between 2015 and 2018 in six parts. Yasuhiko was the chief director of the adaptation, with Sunrise veteran Takashi Imanishi as director, and Katsuyuki Sumisawa as the scriptwriter.[1] A 13-episode anime television "recompilation" of the OVAs aired on NHK General TV in 2019.


The plot of the manga follows somewhat closely to the plot of the original series. It is the year Universal Century 0079, and the eighth month of a vicious war between the Earth Federation and a breakaway nation of space colonists, the Principality of Zeon. The story follows the crew of the warship White Base, as they fight to ferry the experimental RX-78-02 Gundam mobile suit to the Federation base at Jaburo.

Although for the most part faithful to the original series' plot (all of the major events unfold in mostly the same manner as the TV series, though often in different locales), Yasuhiko has taken the liberty of changing certain elements in the series universe, giving a different character to the series and the struggle that unfolds. Primary among these is the presence of mobile suits in both sides well before the conflict begins—in fact, in the flashback sequences, both the Earth Federation Forces and Zeon use Guntanks in 0068, and they and the Guncannon mobile suit are described as "obsolete" and fit for target practice in the first volume (in the TV series proper, both the RX-75 and the RX-77 were as new as the RX-78 Gundam itself, designed to serve as long- and mid-range fire support units).

Other differences concern the breadth of the Gundam's journey to Jaburo. Where it's implied that the White Base's journey to Jaburo in the series was pretty much a circumnavigation of the globe unconnected to many real-world locations, Yasuhiko's journey places the White Base's landfall near Los Angeles, the headquarters of Garma Zabi (in the series, Garma was based out of a generic "New York"Origin in fact states the Zeon occupation HQ as Los Angeles City Hall, with Garma residing in Hollywood/Beverly Hills) and moves the craft steadily to the southeast, and down the South American coast—past Caracas, Venezuela and through Machu Picchu and into Brazil, where Jaburo, the headquarters of the Earth Federation, is located. This retelling cuts out some of the more trivial encounters seen in the original series, while keeping and expanding on important characters like Garma, Ramba Ral, and the Black Tri-Stars. As a direct result the events of Operation Odessa which takes place around the Ukrainian city of the same name, occur after the events of Jaburo, as opposed to the anime where they occur before.

Yasuhiko further finally tells the entire back story of the Gundam universe in the manga. After the successful defense of Jaburo, the story diverts into a very in-depth flashback, told primarily from the viewpoints of Sayla and Char (with a secondary thread being told from Amuro's POV) recounting the downfall of Zeon Zum Deikun, the rise of the Zabi family, the construction of Side 7 and the research into mobile suits, and leading up through a decade until the launching of the One Year War. It also goes into detail answering many previously unanswered questions such as the appearance of heretofore unseen Zeon mobile suits prior to the MS-05 Zaku I, how Dozle Zabi received his trademark scars and even the origin of Casval Deikun/Edward Mass' "Char Aznable" identity. Volume fourteen, deals with the Battle of Loum at the beginning of the One Year War, and is the last piece of the in-depth flashback.

The story shifted back on track to the original anime's storyline, featuring the White Base's involvement in the Federation's Operation Odessa, as well as including Kai Shiden's encounter with Miharu. Afterwards, the manga deals with the end of the Odessa campaign and, in another departure from the series, takes M'Quve and his Gyan out of the picture before he has a chance to confront the Gundam.



The series was first serialized in the magazine Gundam Ace in Japan from 2001 to 2011 and has been collected in 23 tankōbon volumes. Both are published by Kadokawa Shoten under their Kadokawa Comics A imprint. Viz Comics attempted to translate the series and publish it in America in a quarterly, perfect-bound magazine-sized format, although low sales very quickly ended the American run.

Although Viz released 12 volumes of its English translation, they do not correspond with the Japanese volumes. The English volumes, with an average length between 100-130 pages were about half of that of the equivalent Japanese tankōbon, which ran anywhere between 200-270. The length varied as some contained just four chapters, some contained an additional "special" shorter side story, and others contained a full five chapters. The reason for this could be that the Japanese serialization focused on keeping distinct chapters. As a result, the English serialization ended up having a higher price point than its Japanese equivalent with only roughly half of the content. The Viz release stopped near the end of volume six in the Japanese version.

The popularity of the manga in Japan has led to the release of aizōban or Collector's Edition versions. Each collector's edition combines two tankōbon volumes (combining the beginning and end sections into one), creating large, leather bound, hardback editions with dozens of pages printed in full color, as opposed to about 5 pages per tankōbon.

At Otakon 2012, North American publisher Vertical announced that it will publish an English language adaptation of the series in hardcover format similar to the Aizoban editions.[2] The first volume was released on the March 26, 2013 and the series was completed with the publishing of the 12th volume on December 17, 2015.

A spinoff of the manga, titled Mobile Suit Gundam The Origin MSD: Cucuruz Doan's Island (Japanese: 機動戦士ガンダム THE ORIGIN MSD ククルス·ドアンの島, Hepburn: Kidō Senshi Gandamu THE ORIGIN MSD Kukurusu Doan no Shima), was written by Junji Ōno and serialized in Gundam Ace from June 25, 2016 to May 25, 2019, 10 years after the original manga's serialization and collected into five tankobon volumes. The manga serves as a prequel to episode 15 of the original TV series.[3]

English manga volume list[edit]

No. Title English release date English ISBN
1ActivationMarch 26, 2013[4]978-1-93-565487-2
2GarmaJune 25, 2013[5]978-1-93-565488-9
3Ramba RalDecember 17, 2013[6]978-1-93-565497-1
4JaburoDecember 17, 2013[7]978-1-93-565498-8
5Char & SaylaMarch 25, 2014[8]978-1-93-913019-8
6To WarJune 17, 2014[9]978-1-93-913020-4
7Battle Of LoumSeptember 30, 2014[10]978-1-93-913067-9
8Operation OdessaDecember 16, 2014[11]978-1-93-913068-6
9LalahApril 28, 2015[12]978-1-94-122015-3
10SolomonJune 23, 2015[13]978-1-94-122016-0
11A Cosmic GlowSeptember 17, 2015[14]978-1-94-122046-7
12EncountersDecember 17, 2015[15]978-1-94-122047-4


Sunrise announced in June 2011 that an anime adaptation of Gundam The Origin was in production.[16] In March 2014, it was announced it will be a four-episode OVA series with event screenings at Japanese theaters, in celebration of the 35th anniversary of Gundam, and centering on the stories of Casval Deikun and his sister Artesia. The first episode, titled The Blue-Eyed Casval (青い瞳のキャスバル, Aoi Hitomi no Kyasubaru), premiered in limited Japanese theaters on February 28, 2015.[17][18] Sunrise produced an English dub recorded at NYAV Post for the first time since Bandai retired their Gundam license.[19] Another two-episode OVA series, Mobile Suit Gundam The Origin: Loum Arc, was released in 2017 and 2018.[20]

A 13-episode anime television recompilation of the OVA series aired from April 29 to August 12, 2019 under the title Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin – Advent of the Red Comet (機動戦士ガンダム THE ORIGIN 前夜 赤い彗星, Kidō Senshi Gundam The Origin Zenya Akai Suisei).[21] Sugizo produced the theme songs.[22] His band Luna Sea performed the three opening themes, the first being "Sora no Uta ~Higher and Higher~" (宇宙の詩 ~Higher and Higher~),[23] the second "Hisōbi" (悲壮美),[23] and the third a cover of TM Network's "Beyond the Time (Moebius no Sora wo Koete)" (BEYOND THE TIME(メビウスの宇宙を越えて)), the ending theme of 1988's Mobile Suit Gundam: Char's Counterattack.[24] For the ending themes he decided to collaborate with female singers. The first ending theme is a cover of Daisuke Inoue's "Meguriai" (めぐりあい), the theme song of 1982's Mobile Suit Gundam III: Encounters in Space, by Sugizo feat. Glim Spanky.[22] The second ending theme is a cover of Hiroko Moriguchi's "Mizu no Hoshi e Ai wo Komete" (水の星へ愛をこめて), the second opening theme song of 1985's Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam, by Sugizo feat. KOM_I (Wednesday Campanella).[24] The third ending theme is the new song "A Red Ray" by Sugizo feat. miwa.[24] The last is a cover of his and Morrie's co-composition "Hikari no Hate" (光の涯) by Sugizo feat. Aina the End (BiSH).[25] The English dub for the Advent of the Red Comet TV recompilation series was broadcast in the United States on Adult Swim's Toonami programming block from July 7 to October 6, 2019.[26][a]


  1. ^ Adult Swim lists the series as premiering on July 6, 2019 at 3:00 a.m. ET/PT, which is effectively July 7.


  1. ^ "Main Staff". Sunrise Inc. Archived from the original on 2017-05-17. Retrieved 2017-05-19.
  2. ^ "Vertical Adds Gundam: The Origin, Wolfsmund Manga". Anime News Network. 2012-07-29. Archived from the original on 2012-08-01. Retrieved 2012-07-29.
  3. ^ "ガンダム「ククルス・ドアンの島」1巻、謎多き脱走兵の過去が明らかに". MyNavi. 2017-02-26. Retrieved 2017-11-27.
  4. ^ Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin (1). Vertical. ASIN 193565487X.
  5. ^ Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin (2). Vertical. ASIN 1935654888.
  6. ^ Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin (3). Vertical. ASIN 1935654977.
  7. ^ Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin (4). Vertical. ASIN 1935654985.
  8. ^ Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin (5). Vertical. ASIN 1939130190.
  9. ^ Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin (6). Vertical. ASIN 1939130204.
  10. ^ Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin (7). Vertical. ASIN 1939130670.
  11. ^ Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin (8). Vertical. ASIN 1939130689.
  12. ^ Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin (9). Vertical. ASIN 1941220150.
  13. ^ Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin (10). Vertical. ASIN 1941220150.
  14. ^ Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin (11). Vertical. ASIN 1941220460.
  15. ^ Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin (12). Vertical. ASIN 1941220479.
  16. ^ "Gundam The Origin Manga to Launch Anime Project". Anime News Network. 2011-06-22. Archived from the original on 2011-09-01. Retrieved 2011-09-23.
  17. ^ "Gundam the Origin Anime and Tomino Latest Slated for 2014-2015". Anime News Network. Archived from the original on 6 July 2013. Retrieved 3 July 2013.
  18. ^ "より第1話「青い瞳のキャスバル」最新90秒予告映像が公式サイトで公開!". Gundamofficial. Archived from the original on 2014-11-11.
  19. ^ "Sunrise Partners With Right Stuf to Release Gundam Franchise Stateside". Anime News Network. 2014-10-11. Archived from the original on 2014-10-12.
  20. ^ Komatsu, Mikikazu (May 23, 2016). ""Gundam: The Origin" Anime Continues to "Battle Of Loum" Arc". Crunchyroll. Archived from the original on October 9, 2016. Retrieved October 9, 2016.
  21. ^ Pineda, Rafael Antonio (February 22, 2019). "Gundam the Origin TV Recompilation Anime's Title, Songs, April 29 Premiere Revealedl". Anime News Network. Retrieved February 22, 2019.
  22. ^ a b "SUGIZO、GLIM SPANKY&miwa&コムアイ&BiSHアイナと共に『ガンダム』を彩る". Billboard Japan (in Japanese). 2019-04-18. Retrieved 2019-04-20.
  23. ^ a b "LUNA SEA、新曲ジャケットを『ガンダム』の安彦良和が描き下ろし". (in Japanese). 2019-04-15. Retrieved 2019-04-21.
  24. ^ a b c "【対談 #前編】SUGIZO × miwa、「音楽観の重要な部分を『ガンダム』から学んだ」". (in Japanese). 2019-06-25. Retrieved 2019-06-25.
  25. ^ "【対談】SUGIZO × アイナ・ジ・エンド(BiSH)、「すごく綺麗な曲をいい意味で汚してくれた」". (in Japanese). 2019-08-13. Retrieved 2019-08-12.
  26. ^ "Adult Swim's Toonami to Run Gundam: The Origin Starting on July 6". Anime News Network. Retrieved May 25, 2019.

External links[edit]

Preceded by Gundam metaseries (production order)
Succeeded by
Preceded by Gundam metaseries (production order)
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Gundam Universal Century timeline
U.C. 0068 – 0079
Succeeded by