Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch from Mercury Review: If You Move Forward, Gain Two
Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch from Mercury has a different set up compared to the other entries in this franchise. Even though the bulk of this season was based around a slice-of-life style, the small moments where it truly becomes Gundam were satisfactory and entertaining.
Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch from Mercury is the newest entry into the Gundam franchise. After an intense prologue episode, the anime diverges into a slice-of-life show that is set in a school setting. Even though this shift is surprising, the show still has its moments where it truly feels like a Gundam show.
Compared to other entries in this franchise, The Witch from Mercury takes a bit of time to increase in intensity. Although the slice-of-life style might be off putting to certain people, I still found the series enjoyable. For a first season with only 12 episodes, I enjoyed seeing a different take on Gundam. This show also had an interesting twist at the end of the season, which was worth the wait.
If you aren’t sure if this is the type of show for you, keep reading to find out more. Contrary to other entries in the Gundam franchise, no prior Gundam knowledge is needed to enjoy this show, so it’s good for new and veteran viewers alike.
Do You Need to Watch Anything Else Before The Witch from Mercury?
The first topic I want to touch on in this review is any background information you might want to have before jumping into this show. Contrary to other Gundam series out there, The Witch from Mercury is set in its own universe, which means that it has no ties to the other timelines, like the Universal Century or Cosmic Era timelines. As a result, this could be a good starting point for any new fans to the franchise. The only bit of extra one might need before beginning the show is to watch the prologue episode. This prologue sets up the premise and the background for the season. Other than that, no other piece of content is required to enjoy the show.
Background Information on The Witch From Mercury
Now, for the show itself, it currently has a 12 episode season, with roughly 20 minute episodes. After its season finale that aired in January, an announcement has been made that a season 2 has been confirmed to start in April. Similar to the first season, the second season will also feature 12 episodes. Currently, the series can accessed on Crunchyroll, or through the Gundam.info YouTube channel, depending on your region.
Art style and Mech Design
Onto actual aspects of the show, I have to say that I liked the mech designs. Gundam Aerial has that classic Gundam feel, with a slimer waist like the Iron Blooded Orphans models. With this design, the mobile suit feels light and agile, which is perfectly replicated in the show. Along with that, the GUND-ARM system is an interesting addition. Not only does it made the drone technology that Aerial use interesting, but the fact that certain areas on the Aerial glow red is a nice touch. The way the drones move on screen was also very satisfying to watch.
Besides the Aerial itself, I also liked that all the other mobile suits featured felt unique. Since the characters are split based on their families and businesses, it was interesting to see how each family’s suits were all unique. It added some nice variety to the show. In other shows, there would be many more mass produced suits that would used as filler for many battles. Since this show doesn’t start in a war setting, I liked seeing the different styles of mobile suits.
Finally, character design. The cast for the Witch from Mercury has to be one of the more diverse group that I’ve seen from other shows. Each powerful family at the school are unique and distinguishable from each other, which is something I appreciate. The one thing that slightly bothers me are Suletta’s eyebrows. Whoever designed them definitely did her dirty.
Is Gundam: The Witch from Mercury Worth Watching
Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch from Mercury is an interesting show. On one hand, this show doesn’t rely on any prior knowledge to get into. Since The Witch from Mercury is in its own universe, other entries in the franchise don’t affect this show directly. As a veteran in the Gundam franchise, you might notice some clues from your experience with other shows in the franchise. On that same token, veterans in the series may be off put by the style of the show. I know when I first started this show, I was taken aback by the different atmosphere between this show and others in the franchise, to even the differences between episode 1 and the prologue. Typically, Gundam has a darker tone and atmosphere. The series usually revolves around war, politics, and child soldiers after all. So starting with a slice-of-life may be too much of a shift for some people.
I do have to say the fight scenes, soundtracks, and mech designs were top tier for me. The first entrance of the Aerial in episode one, with its theme in the background definitely gave me chills. And though the slice-of-life school stuff wasn’t what I was expecting from Gundam, the moments that the show became dark were nice shocks that subverted expectations. I’m definitely excited for season 2.
If you want to try Gundam for the first time, then this is a nice way to ease into the franchise. If you aren’t sure, just give it a shot. Being only 12 episodes, there isn’t too much to lose. For veterans of the franchise, I’d still recommend giving it a shot. It changes up the old formula, and who knows, maybe you’ll enjoy the change.