Gundam Build Divers is back with a sequel series, Gundam Build Divers Re:RISE, that is just as referential as its predecessor. It would take a keen eye and bottomless Gundam knowledge in order to catch the more obscure references it makes to every corner of the Gundam multiverse. Fortunately, we have Gundam expert Tom Aznable to help.
Welcome back to Deep Dive, Tom Aznable’s reader-favorite column all about catching the more esoteric 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:
Episode 04: Wounded Wings
Gundam SEED Ending Wreckage, Mobile Suit Gundam SEED (anime)
This is not pulling from a specific Gundam SEED ending sequence, but both the endings to SEED and SEED Destiny were distinctive in that it showed all the main Gundams as wreckage.
Captain Zeon’s appropriately named ν-Zeon Gundam is a ν Gundam that incorporates many elements of typical Zeon mobile suit design. When he activates his Gundam, he cries out “Zeonic Generation! Anaheim Fusion!” These are likely both references to Universal Century megacorporation and mobile suit manufacturer Anaheim Electronics. After the One Year War, Anaheim snapped up the talent and assets of Zeon’s mobile suit engineering and manufacturing companies, including Zeonic, the creators of the Zaku mobile suit line. “Anaheim Fusion” is likely alluding to the fact that Anaheim Electronics went on to design and supply mobile suits to both the Earth Federation and Zeon remnant/successor movements such as Neo-Zeon.
Turn A Gundam Prize, Turn A Gundam (anime)
This dastardly Gaza Brother is selling freebies from a Turn A Gundam promotion. The item in question is Turn A Gundam pilot Loran Cehack’s toy fish, and the NPDs giving it away are based on supporting characters Merrybell Gadget and Miashei Kune.
Zakrello Selfie Stick, Mobile Suit Gundam (anime)
This very inconsiderate Gaza Brother nonetheless has kind of a neat accessory, if a selfie stick could ever be considered neat. This one is based on the oddball Zakrello mobile armor, which only appeared briefly in an episode of Mobile Suit Gundam and was edited entirely out of the compilation movies.
Axis Drop, Mobile Suit Gundam: Char’s Counterattack (anime)
Invoking even more Char’s Counterattack imagery in what seems to be a disproportionate show of force, Captain Zeon drops the former Zeon colony of Axis, much like Char Aznable intended to. What’s worse, he appears to be abusing the Newtype phenomenon later known as the “Axis shock” to call it down, where in the film it actually acted to deflect Axis from Earth.
MBF-P02 Kai Gundam Astray Red Frame Kai, Mobile Suit Gundam SEED VS Astray (manga)
- Color scheme: Towa Kiseki (virtual YouTuber)
As Captain Zeon’s G-Tube show ends, his end card recommends “Eternal Miracle,” featuring a thumbnail of the Astray Red Frame Kai. This Gundam is popularly associated online with recently popular virtual YouTuber Towa Kiseki, who drew comparisons with the mobile suit owing to the large triangle on her back. The Astray’s colors here are more in line with her look, and “Kiseki” translates to “Miracle” in Japanese. Re:RISE really seems to be leaning into the “online” aspects of its online game theme this time around.
Kilimanjaro Base, Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam (anime)
Another user mission yields another UC location, this time the Titans base at Kilimanjaro from Zeta Gundam. And sure enough, the Build DiVERS are greeted there by the transformable Titans mobile suit Baund Doc.
Andrew Waltfeld Coffee, Mobile Suit Gundam SEED (anime)
It’s a wonder a coffee themed after Gundam SEED’s coffee connoisseur Andrew Waltfeld doesn’t actually exist, but considering the Strike Gundam outside it makes sense this particular Gundam Café would offer it. The cup is adorned with Waltfeld’s “Desert Tiger” insignia and silhouettes of his LaGOWE quadrupedal mobile suit.
Hinata has been getting in the swing of things at the Gundam Café, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t still have gaps in her knowledge. Unfortunately for this patron, him deforming his face into the likeness of Gundam 0083 protagonist Kou Uraki to express the character’s signature dislike of characters is only taken as dissatisfaction and rudeness. Considering that the “Stardust Plate” is a reference to Gundam 0083’s subtitle, this is probably a commonly quoted line when it’s ordered.
This custom Gunpla combines two of the most popular Gundam designs there are, and certainly two of the wing-iest.
The Strike Freedom Wing Zero is accompanied by the Gundam Heaven’s Sword, known as the Soaring Raven Gundam in G Gundam’s dub. The Heaven’s Sword was one of the Devil Gundam’s Four Heavenly Kings, piloted by Neo Italy’s Michelo Chariot.
Left to Right: Gundam Heaven’s Sword (G Gundam), XXXG-00W0 Wing Gundam Zero EW (Strike Freedom Colors) (Gundam Wing: Endless Waltz), CONCEPT-X 6-1-2 Turn X (Turn A Gundam)