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Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin, Vol. 1- Activation Hardcover – March 26, 2013

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Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin, Vol. 1- Activation + Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin, Vol. 2- Garma + Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin, Vol. 3- Ramba Ral
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Editorial Reviews


"It’s a good book. Very good, actually. Very good war comics, requiring no prior experience with anime or mecha or Gundam – just a well-made, old-fashioned war comic, full of thrills and spills and lucky breaks and narrow escapes and preening villains you’ll love to hate and pigheaded heroes you may hate to love, and expert drawings by a master craftsman, and hard, sturdy violence." - Joe McCulloch, The Comics Journal

"It's not often that I bother taking up space just to discuss the presentation of a book, but this is certainly one of Vertical's finest releases. Both the graphic and actual material design of the cover is special, and the interior is of a much higher quality than your average manga. This especially holds true throughout the healthy handful of color sections, which look absolutely gorgeous on the glossy paper stock...The whole package is an absolute must for fans of Gundam, but I'd say there's plenty to enjoy in this nearly 450-page monster for anyone remotely interested in mech action and sci-fi storytelling." - Otaku USA

"This is the root of all the tropes and themes of Gundam but with a loving layer of refinement that cleans up a lot of the rough edges of the original...It many ways this is the clearest vision of the original story and a great place to start as well as revisit." - Reverse Thieves

"From the painted opening prologue, the storytelling is of an incredibly high standard, with Yasuhiko’s touch servicing action scenes especially well. Visual highlights abound... It’s a dazzling, action packed ride, and I’d recommend it highly." - Anime UK News

About the Author

Hokkaido native Yoshikazu Yasuhiko (1947-) is a Japanese animator and manga artist. His career as a character designer has spanned over four decades, creating famed characters for such anime as Super Atragon, Brace Raideen, and the widely known Mobile Suit Gundam. Considered a pivotal player in mecha and sci-fi anime, Yasuhiko's characters, stories and illustrations are unmistakable in their style and serve as timeless examples as pioneers of manga and animation in Japan. 

Yasuhiko began his career as an animator in Osama Tezuka's Mushi Productions, and later on decided to go freelance to work for a number of animation productions for both film and television. In the late 70's, Yasuhiko would turn his attention to the world of comics, as he has since penned nearly two dozen titles since.

In 1981 he was awarded the Nebula Award by the Japanese Sci-Fi Association.
In 1990 his work Namuji won the Japan Comic Artist Association Grand Prize
And in 2000 he took the Japan Media Arts Award for Best Comic with his title A Revolutionary Dog.

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Product Details

  • Series: Gundam (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 456 pages
  • Publisher: Vertical (March 26, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 193565487X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1935654872
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.2 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,129 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By BlueStar on March 27, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Gundam has returned to the United States in the form of a gorgeous, 456 page, hardcover edition of the Gundam: The Origin tale from the beginning! A young Amuro Ray and his friends and neighbors are caught in the crossfire during the One Year War when a Zeon Zaku squad attacks the neutral space colony Side 7. Amuro desperately tries to find an escape but stumbles upon the Earth Federation's secret weapon; the Gundam. This crew of civilians take charge of the White Base alongside the remaining crew and have to escape the colony and make it to Earth, all while being pursued by the Federation's nemesis Char Aznable; the Red Comet! Amuro must battle the enemy in a war machine and utilize his quick thinking to stop Char from destroying everyone he loves and cares for and bring the prototype weapon to the Jaburo base on Earth!

So, the Origin returns in America. Before, it was released by Viz comics in a soft-cover form but here we have a more traditional manga form with a beautiful, sewn-binding hardcover format. It collects the story from the beginning to the Earth entry operation and includes the full color pages as well as all the black and white material. Essays from various writers like Ryusuke Hikawa and Shinichiro Inoue are also at the end. The book basically covers the first two volumes and the writing here is obviously very well done and the translations, although not perfect (and contain a spelling error or two), work well and are fairly easy to read while trying to conform to the original Japanese speech bubbles. The art here is beautiful and especially takes its full form when in the nice, brush-stroked, warm colors.
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24 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Zissou on March 26, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is one of your best chances to show bandai that we want Gundam in English. Even if they ignore the sales your worst case scenario is being stuck with this great book!
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13 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Shmuffalo on March 27, 2013
Format: Hardcover
After Viz cancelled this series in its infancy, I never thought we would have an English edition of Gundam: The Origin. I'm so glad that Vertical not only proved me wrong, but published this treasure in a high-quality format few comics get to achieve. Gundam: The Origin is an excellently-crafted comic that is highly accessible for any reader, reimagining the original Gundam story in a way that accentuates its depth while expanding older fans' views of the source material.

The Origin is more than just an adaptation of a classic animated series. Penned by one of the series' original creators, this series treats the subject matter with the elegance of a masterful cartoonist. Every aspect of the original series' story and world-building is embellished, and Yasuhiko does not do this for the sake of fanservice; each creative decision enriches the reader's involvement in Gundam's setting and their ties to the series' characters. Yasuhiko's background in animation brings a unique sense of pacing and rhythm to his panels; his page layouts never feel like elaborate storyboards, instead using clever design to control the flow of reading. This volume also reproduces his fully watercolored pages (which bookend each chapter) in stunning beauty, showing off his unique sense of emotive color that's rarely been seen in the US.

In terms of production quality, this hardcover is phenomenal. Every inch of the cover is wrapped in elegant art by Yasuhiko, with little text to distract from it. All of the pages are printed on nice gloss paper (which I found a bit strange for the black and white pages, but was well worth it for highlighting Yasuhiko's stunning color pages). The back of the book features three translated essays, providing some background and cultural context for the comic.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Chris M. on October 6, 2014
Format: Hardcover
This book is a masterpiece. It's technically a retelling of the Popular Mobile Suit Gundam Anime, but it actually goes to much greater detail, and better character dialogue than the show with added scenes and restructured stories.

The Illustration of the book is what really sells it. There are panels and pages so cool you just have to stop and admire it for a couple of minutes. I even think some of them would make great wallpapers. The Comic is mostly black and white, but there are some absolutely beautiful fully colored scenes, and these are the best. The colors are lively and deep, but not cartoonishly so. This is due to the art style being more realistic and proportioned than a typical manga or anime. This is also thanks to the mechanical design (Which is taken very seriously), that any futurist can enjoy. It's very action heavy, but it's easy to follow.

The Story is pretty serious and doesnt try to censor itself, though it isn't glorified carnage. Unlike the show which pretty much demonized Zeon with few exceptions, this places both sides on a grayer note; though Zeon still has a hint of Space Nazism to them. If you're familiar with the show, you'll get the same jist, but you'll still apreciate the sublte yet meaningful changes. I'd say this story is better than the show. If you're new to it, this is the best way to start as the anime shows its age at this point.

I should note that the designs are not 100 percent accurate to the typical portrayal of the both the characters and especially the Mobile Suits. They look bulkier and more heavily armed, with certain aesthetic differences, like Shoulder Magnums( which the RX did not have),or different character looks.
Also, i love the feel of the cover of this book. I don't know what its made out off, but i can't stop touching it.
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