Gunpla fans are rejoicing over Gundam Build Divers, a new Sunrise anime all about our favorite model kits. But it could be tricky to catch the more obscure Gundam references in the show… until now.
Welcome to Deep Dive, a new column from Gundam expert Tom Aznable that points out the more unexpected aspects of the Gundam multiverse that make it into the show. Nothing passes Tom’s eagle eye for spotting this stuff (we suspect Newtype abilities), but this column focuses specifically on rare sightings and deep cuts. Read on to see what you may have missed.
- References in ‘Gundam Build Divers’ Prologue and Episode 1
- References in ‘Gundam Build Divers’ Episode 2
- References in ‘Gundam Build Divers’ Episode 3
- References in ‘Gundam Build Divers’ Episode 4
- References in ‘Gundam Build Divers’ Episode 5
World Hobby, Hobby Japan (magazine)
While we previously saw an issue of Hobby Hobby in an earlier episode, World Hobby seems to even more closely resemble the real-life Hobby Japan magazine. An issue that appears later actually has screenshots of the Woundwort and Musha Gundam Mk. II from the first episode.
MS-17 Galbaldy Alpha, MS-X (design series)
Koichi has a thing for the Galbaldy line of mobile suits. While the first Galbaldy to appear in animation was the Galbaldy Beta (Zeta Gundam) seen prominently later in the episode, Koichi’s award-winning model is the original Galbaldy Alpha from the MS-X design series. MS-X debuted designs for multiple mobile suits previously only mentioned in the “Tomino Memo,” the original outline for Gundam before it was cut short. In the Tomino Memo, the original Galbaldy was actually piloted by Char Aznable. While it’s not animated, this marks the first appearance of the Galbaldy Alpha in an anime. Looks like next time, Koichi will debut his own Gundam IBO-flavored take on the Galbaldy: the Galbaldy Rebake.
When Riku is admiring Koichi’s Gunpla, he zeroes in on the G-3 Gundam. This variation on the original Gundam features the magnet coating used to upgrade the Gundam late in the original anime. In the novelization, the G-3 actually replaces it entirely at a similar point in the story.
This build may just seem like a straightforward Anavel Gato’s Gelgoog, but there’s something special about it. This Gelgoog is actually a Commander Type (as indicated by its horn/antenna) and has a large custom beam rifle. Gundam manga artist and character designer Tsukasa Kotobuki revealed on Twitter that this is actually a recreation of an illustration he did years ago.
— ことぶきつかさ (@t_kotobuki) May 8, 2018
Type 61 Tank, Mobile Suit Gundam (anime)
Here we see that Koichi has been building a UC Hardgraph M61A5 Main Battle Tank “Semovente Phantom Element” kit. The Hardgraph kit version of the Type 61 tank gives it a more realistic tan color scheme, but Koichi has painted it in the sci-fi purple of the original anime.
Star Seven (Seven Stars), Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron Blooded Orphans (anime)
Evidently not content with the Seven Stars food stand in GBN, Gjallarhorn’s Seven Stars have opened a chain of 7-Eleven-esque convenience stores.
This episode features a ton of Universal Century era company logos. More on those later though, because Zwinemn in particular deserves special attention. Zwinemn is explained as being the company that created the Acguy, and by extension the Agg MS line. But this isn’t always consistent, and the vast majority of the time these MS are credited to Zeonic, the company that created the Zaku, Gouf, and Gelgoog. There’s a reason for this: Zwinemn was originally made up on a popular Japanese Gundam fansite called (I’m not kidding) “Sorry for Being Born.” Somehow from there it managed to jump into official material, including a poster included with the book Anaheim Journal (presented as an in-universe magazine from Anaheim Electronics), multiple manga, and even in the pre-Bandai-Namco merger Namco PS2 Gundam game The One Year War. Considering how huge it appears in several shots during this episode, this may be Zwinemn’s most prominent appearance yet, and one of the deeper cuts Build Divers has shouted out thus far.
Universal Century Companies
It seems like for a lot of the company logos that show up in both the GBN lobby and even in the real world are pulled straight from a poster that came with the aforementioned Anaheim Journal, which would also explain the specific logo used for MacDaniel in an earlier episode. Apart from what appears to be the real-life logo for Scandinavian Airlines for some reason, UC logos we see in the lobby include:
- PCST (Public Corporation of Space Transport): a company that supports emigration from the Earth to the colonies
- Bowa: manufacturer of beam weaponry for Federation mobile suits
- BW Industry Co., Ltd: maker of parts for the Homo Avis glider, as seen in Zeta Gundam
- Zas Thermonuclear Reactor: manufacturer of reactors for Zeon MS during the One Year War
- AirUNA: a civilian airline offering transport to the moon (Anaheim Journal actually comes with an AirUNA inflight magazine)
- Felipe: manufacturer of sensors and cameras used by Zeon mobile suits
- Zeonic: MS developer and creators of theZaku, Gouf, and Gelgoog
- Kojak Airlines: a freight and passenger airline
- Monotone Mouse Co., Ltd: a colony repair company and subcontractor of the Colony Corporation
- Banger Industrial: subcontractor of the Colony Corporation
Logos at the Gundam Base are a mix of UC companies and other references:
- SNRI (Strategic Naval Research Institute): a Federation weapons developer which creates the Gundam F91 and other miniaturized next-gen mobile suits
- Anaheim Electronics: the huge conglomerate largely known in Gundam as the manufacturer of most mobile suits post-One Year War
- MIP: makers of the Z’Gok mobile suit and Bigro and Zakrello mobile armors
- Vic Wellington: a spacecraft development company
- MacDaniel: a chain of fast food restaurants on the moon and colonies, as seen in Zeta Gundam and at the real life Gundam Cafe
- Yashima Heavy Industrial: developer/manufacturer of propulsion engines for spaceships, owned by White Base helmsman Mirai Yashima’s father
- Crossbone Vanguard: the military of Cosmo Babylonia, as seen in Gundam F91
- Hervic: the primary Earth Federation aircraft developer during the One Year War, responsible for the Core Fighter and G-Fighter as well as more conventional fighters
- Seabook: Seabook Arno, pilot of the Gundam F91
- Zwinemn: as mentioned earlier, creators of the Acguy depending on who you talk to
Type 74 Hover Truck, Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team (anime)
Koichi must be a fan of the UC Hardgraph line, because behind some dusty glass on his bookshelf you can see he’s built the Hover Truck from the MS[G] Platoon Briefing Set. Now if only those book titles weren’t so blurry!